People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it. Welcome to From On High.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

At Last!

Okay, I know I was dead set against the Republican effort back in the 90's to impeach Bill Clinton for fill in the blank. But I'll admit there is a certain amount of glee engendered by this headline in the Charleston Daily Mail:

Democrats finally impeach the Clintons

Darned if it doesn't feel good.

I Think I Like This Guy After All

At first I thought Robert Gates was just another politician brought in to the Defense Department to mollify the Democrats in Congress (like that is possible ...). Now, my opinion of the man is changing. This action of his earns a bit of respect:
Gates ousts Air Force leaders in historic shake-up
By Robert Burns, MyWay.com

Washington (AP) - Defense Secretary Robert Gates ousted the Air Force's top military and civilian leaders Thursday, holding them to account in a historic Pentagon shake-up after embarrassing nuclear mix-ups.

Gates announced at a news conference that he had accepted the resignations of Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Michael Moseley and Air Force Secretary Michael Wynne - a highly unusual double firing.

Gates said his decision was based mainly on the damning conclusions of an internal report on the mistaken shipment to Taiwan of four Air Force electrical fuses for ballistic missile warheads. And he linked the underlying causes of that slip-up to another startling incident: the flight last August of a B-52 bomber that was mistakenly armed with six nuclear-tipped cruise missiles.

The report drew the stunning conclusion that the Air Force's nuclear standards have been in a long decline, a "problem that has been identified but not effectively addressed for over a decade." (link)
Wow. You don't see much of this kind of thing in this day and age. Too bad too. I'll bet it gets everyone's attention.

We're Doomed

A bunch of economic experts got together in Roanoke on Tuesday to show the locals here in Southwest Virginia how to climb their way out of the economic depression that we've created for ourselves (see "Roanoke summit discusses economy").

So what did these geniuses propose that we do about our crumbling manufacturing base and pathetic gross domestic product output in the area? Hold on to your seat:
Sean McGinnis, director of Virginia Tech's Green Engineering Program, emphasized in the keynote address of the morning that companies large and small can save money, generate positive publicity and avoid regulatory nightmares by investing time and energy in environmentally friendly, or "green," business practices.

Scott Martin, Franklin County's director of commerce and leisure services, lightened the mood with a forceful yet amusing review of how the region should promote its access to natural resources and recreational activities and also work diligently to protect these assets as key contributors to economic development.

Roanoke City Councilwoman Gwen Mason led a panel discussion about sustainable business practices. She said small businesses can be important players. She and others talked about the aesthetic and polluting impact of cigarette butts tossed at intersections and elsewhere and the attractions of being a green community.
These people have the luxury of spouting such idiocy. They are employed. How any of this - aesthetic and polluting impact of cigarette butts? - actually brings jobs to Southwest Virginia and keeps thousands of others from fleeing to foreign lands is beyond my ken.

A question: Shouldn't the organizers of this little gabfest have invited some economists to this economic summit?

That House Of Cards ...

... continues to crumble:
Marine acquitted in Haditha killing cover-up case
By Chelsea J. Carter, The Associated Press

Camp Pedleton, Calif. -- A military jury acquitted a Marine intelligence officer Wednesday of charges that he tried to help cover up the killings of 24 Iraqis.

Cheers erupted as the seven-officer panel cleared 1st Lt. Andrew Grayson, who was the first of three Marines to be tried in the biggest U.S. criminal case involving Iraqi deaths linked to the war. The verdict came just five hours after deliberations began.

The judge, Maj. Brian E. Kasprzyk, admonished the noisy courtroom, saying: "There will be no more of that."

Grayson, who has always maintained he did nothing wrong, was not at the scene of the killings of men, women and children on Nov. 19, 2005, in Haditha. He was accused of telling a sergeant to delete photographs of the dead from a digital camera and laptop computer. (link)
Not guilty.

I expect an apology to be coming from Time magazine and Congressman Murtha any day now.

On Our 'Energy Policy'

George Will:

Rising in the Senate on May 13, Chuck Schumer, the New York Democrat, explained: "I rise to discuss rising energy prices." The president was heading to Saudi Arabia to seek an increase in its oil production, and Schumer's gorge was rising.

Saudi Arabia, he said, "holds the key to reducing gasoline prices at home in the short term." Therefore arms sales to that kingdom should be blocked unless it "increases its oil production by one million barrels per day," which would cause the price of gasoline to fall "50 cents a gallon almost immediately."

Schumer does know that if you increase the supply of something, the price of it probably will fall. That is why he and 96 other senators recently voted to increase the supply of oil on the market by stopping the flow of oil into the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, which protects against major physical interruptions. Seventy-one of the 97 senators who voted to stop filling the reserve also oppose drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

Drilling is underway 60 miles off Florida. The drilling is being done by China, in cooperation with Cuba, which is drilling closer to South Florida than U.S. companies are.

America says to foreign producers: We prefer not to pump our oil, so please pump more of yours, thereby lowering its value, for our benefit. Let it not be said that America has no energy policy.

"The Gas Prices We Deserve," The Washington Post, June 5, 2008

- - -

And for those of you who still want to blame Exxon Mobil and BP for high gas prices at the pump, take heed:

India Sharply Raises Fuel Prices

The government of India owns the oil production therein, not "Big Oil." What say you now?

This Is Why We Spend $17 Billion a Year On NASA?

Space Station Toilet Is Working Again

For the love of God.

You Know These Guys Aren't Serious

Here I've begun to worry about the carbon footprint with which I'm saddling the planet every time I cook wienies on the barbecue. I, of course, being the conscientious environmentalist.

I'm also beginning to wonder if those who've led me into this new state of consciousness were just joking around the whole time. News like the following kinda shake up the psyche:

Latest Round of U.N. Climate Talks Under Way in Bonn
With 2,400 Participants Jetting in from 172 Countries, U.N. Might Consider a Carbon Tax on Air Travel
By Dan Shapley, The Daily Green

The latest round of international climate talks is under way in Bonn, Germany, as environmentalists warn that the United Nations predictions for a warmer world are too conservative.

This round of negotiations, a two-week session, is only the latest, and not the last (there are at least eight more planned in the next year and a half).

Also to be considered, according to the Associated Press, is a carbon tax on airline
. With 2,400 participants from 172 countries and eight more meetings yet to take place (the next in Accra, Ghana), the delegates certainly have a large carbon footprint from all that air travel. (link) (my emphasis)

Nine meetings. 2,400 attendees flying to exotic locations from all over ther world for each. Meeting to figure out a way to conserve on fossil fuels and control carbon emissions.

Get the impression these guys and gals aren't really all that caring about the climate?

A No-Brainer

I'm surprised it took this long for Verizon and Alltel to partner up:
Alltel Sale to Verizon Looks Likely
By Andrew Ross Sorkin and Laura M. Holson, The New York Times

Verizon Communications is near a deal to buy Alltel for about $27 billion, including the assumption of debt, creating the nation’s largest cellular telephone provider, people involved in the negotiations said. A deal could be announced as early as Thursday, these people said.

The deal would catapult Verizon’s wireless business ahead of AT&T Wireless, which would fall to No. 2, followed by Sprint Nextel and Deutsche Telecom’s T-Mobile. A combination of Verizon, based in New York, and Alltel, based in Little Rock, Ark., would have more than 80 million subscribers. Verizon would add coverage in Midwest and the South. (link)
Alltel has always been a highly sought-after company. Well-managed and innovative - oh, and very profitable - its acquisition by Verizon (and others) has been out there in the rumor mill for years. Goldman Sachs purchasing the Little Rock company made good sense, but Verizon, which operates with nearly identical software technology as does Alltel, provides a wonderful fit.

Just sayin'.

Thank God A'Mighty!

This saga is going to play out the same way that "comprehensive immigration bill" debacle went. And the way HillaryCare went.

The most sweeping government takeover of the private sector in American history will never withstand the light of day. The more we know about Senate machinations, the better able we are to defeat the dark forces of socialism. The latest news:

Climate bill stalls in Senate after dispute

John Warner must be pissed. A good beginning.

If I Were Him ...

... I think I'd steer clear of Ft. Marcy Park:

Ex-Obama Fund-Raiser Is Convicted of Fraud

Of course, Barack Obama isn't Bill Clinton. But when Tony Rezco starts squealing, crazy things are bound to happen.