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

Saturday, October 04, 2008

What's the Margin Of Error?

Jim Gilmore is keeping it close. The latest poll is in:

Democrat Mark Warner maintains a commanding slim lead over Republican Jim Gilmore in their race for Virginia's open U.S. Senate seat, according to a poll released Friday.

Warner leads Gilmore by a slender and weakening margin of 57 percent to 31 percent in a poll conducted by Mason Dixon Polling & Research, which surveyed 625 registered voters between Monday and Wednesday. The poll has a margin of error of 4 margin of error of 24 percentage points.

I learned editing from the Washington Post.

Here's Your Input

From this morning's Roanoke Times:
Input sought for greenways plan
By Rob Johnson

The city will hold a public meeting at 7 p.m. Monday on the Roanoke Civic Center's mezzanine to gather input about plans to link the Roanoke River and Tinker Creek greenways in Southeast.

"This is the first opportunity for citizens to share their thoughts and ideas on how to connect the two park corridors," which would create a trail of about seven and a half miles for pedestrians and bicycles, said Donnie Underwood, Roanoke's parks and greenways planner. "This will set the stage," he added. (link)
You want input? Scrap the silly plan. Don't spend the money. Return it to the taxpayers. Encourage businesses to relocate to Roanoke because of its (someday) low-tax reputation and business-friendly, welcoming environment. The employers and employees of those new companies will find a place to walk their dogs all by themselves.

Am I Missing Something?

Can a hit-and-run bring a charge of 1st-degree murder? Apparently so:
Charges filed in jogger's hit-and-run death
By Amanda Codispoti, The Roanoke Times

A Roanoke County grand jury on Friday indicted Jeffery Martin Young in the hit-and-run death of a Roanoke lawyer eight months after Young's Jeep was first connected with the crime.

Young, 31, is charged with first-degree murder and felony hit-and-run in the death of Thomas Farrell.

Farrell, 49, was hit and killed Jan. 28 while on a morning jog in Southwest Roanoke County. His family could not be reached Friday. (link)
According to this legal source:
"A person may be charged with first-degree murder if it is believed that the killing was committed willfully and with malice, deliberation, and premeditation.

It can be enough evidence that the premeditation and deliberation occurred only a moment before the killing."
"Malice, deliberation, and premeditation." A hit-and-run. What does the Roanoke County prosecutor know that the rest of us don't know? And can a jury find the defendant guilty of a lesser charge during deliberations or does Virginia law require that the jurors act on the charge(s) before them?

Puzzling ...

This About Sums It Up

God help me, I support the financial sector bailout, even though it may prove in coming days to not be enough to stem the credit crunch that is seizing both commercial and consumer markets now. The experts who we all need to rely on in times like these say it is necessary. Yes, I support it, but Congress, bringing the bailout to a vote in its inimitable fashion, made me take a shower and wash off the filthy residue for my having backed the effort.

Why can't Washington do the people's work without the now all-too familiar ritualistic thievery and corruption?
A Flawed But Necessary Rescue
Investor's Business Daily editorial

Like the metastasizing federal tax code, the rescue bill swelled from three pages and $700 billion in its first incarnation to more than $800 billion and 451 pages in just a matter of days.

Special interests that have nothing to do with the rescuing of the financial system are today's happy beneficiaries of more than $100 billion in tax breaks — or "sweeteners," as the plan's negotiators called them.

And just what did this rescue package contain — in addition to money for our distressed financial system, that is?

... wooden arrows ...

... auto racetrack owners ...

... solar and wind power ...

... victims of natural disasters ...

... bicycles ... movie companies ...

The disgraceful way this legislation weaved its way through the process is a measure of how corrupt U.S. lawmakers have become. This Congress has earned its all-time low approval rating. (link)
I've not seen where our congressman, Rick Boucher, has had anything to say on the subject (he's been too busy making idiotic statements about Joe Biden's new-found love for clean coal) but he voted for the measure yesterday. Probably with enthusiasm. And I support his vote. The crisis is that troubling.

But unlike Boucher, I detest the deplorable earmarks (Hollywood filmmakers!) that had to be added to a bill that was supposed to be targeting the worst financial disaster this nation has witnessed in our lifetimes. And I detest the way he and his pals in Washington do it in spite of American opposition to the practice.

Investor's Business Daily has it right:

"The disgraceful way this legislation weaved its way through the process is a measure of how corrupt U.S. lawmakers have become. This Congress has earned its all-time low approval rating."

Disgraceful. And I supported Boucher's effort. I need to take another shower.

I Guessed Wrong

I conjectured the other day that the hedge fund community would be next in line, hat-in-hand, seeking relief from the people in Washington who have the money printing presses humming 'round the clock. But I guessed wrong. It's not the hedge fund community; it's A'nold:
California May Ask U.S. for Loan
By Randal C. Archibold, The New York Times

Los Angeles — California, the nation’s most populous state and the world’s sixth-biggest economy, has warned the Treasury Department that it may need a $7 billion emergency loan from the federal government because it is running out of cash and has not been able to borrow more.

State officials said they hoped that the $700 billion federal bailout of the financial system approved by the House of Representatives on Friday would help open credit markets that have balked at providing the kind of short-term financing California and other states and local governments routinely rely on to keep operating.

But Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, a Republican, said at a news conference on Friday that the state “is not out of the woods yet” and in a few weeks could run out of cash to pay for basic services. (link)
Not mentioned is the fact that the state of California was a fiscal train wreck before the financial crisis hit just weeks ago, with the Democrat-controlled legislature in Sacramento spending money they didn't have like ... they printed it themselves.

So now the state is in trouble. And it'll be George W. Bush's fault. And California will overwhelmingly endorse another Democrat to replace him.


Ah, Journalism

The New York Times finally gets around to looking into the Barack Obama/Weatherman terrorist connection. But not too closely. Or for too long. What we are treated to this morning is:
"A review of records of the schools project and interviews with a dozen people who know both men, suggest that Mr. Obama, 47, has played down his contacts with Mr. Ayers, 63. But ..." (link)
"But ..."

"McCain ..."

"But ..."

"Republicans ..."

"But ...

And then we get a bio of William Ayres that reads like a laudatory Who's Who of Hollywood celebrities. Much like the effort of this same paper to "report" but avoid reporting on the Swiftboat controversy during the John Kerry presidential campaign in 2004 (it too involved mostly attempts at refutation and at attacking the messengers rather than presenting any facts related to the charges), this article brings shame to the words "investigative reporting." You'd think, from reading "Obama and the 60's Bomber" that John McCain was the bad guy and that the asshole who built bombs and, in his own words, "didn't do enough" to kill innocent American men, women, and children back in the turbulent 60's and 70's, was an upstanding dude.

If I were the publisher of this rag, I'd be embarrassed.

This Is Rather Startling

There are what, a tad over 300 million people in this country? Subtract those who were working at the time and those who were traveling and those who were indisposed for some reason - how many does that leave? Somewhere around 69,989,000, I'd say. Which means everyone was watching Sarah Palin th'ow down her thang Thursday night in the veep debate:
Final: 69,989,000 viewers -- Palin-Biden the most-watched vp debate ever
By James Hibbard, The Hollywood Reporter

Thursday's highly anticipated face-off between Alaska governor Sarah Palin and Delaware senator Joe Biden was the most-watched vp debate of all time.

Last night's event was seen by nearly 70 million viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research.

That's the most-viewed debate -- presidential or vp -- since at least the second round between Bill Clinton, Ross Perot and George Bush in 1992 (which drew an audience of 69.9 million).

Thursday's event was 33% higher than Friday's top-of-the-ticket debate between John McCain and Barack Obama. (link) [my emphasis]
I expect most of those who tuned in last night did so to be entertained - in one way or another. Based upon what I watched, they were entertained indeed. This debate was so much more interesting than the McCain/Obama debate, which was a big snooze. And it was all because of ... Sarah.