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

Saturday, October 31, 2009

She's Fired Up Now

Annie B (Republican delegate, 6th Virginia District) has released a new ad that goes after her opponent's allegation that Ms. Crockett-Stark had voted in favor of electric rates four times in recent years.  It's direct and to the point:

"Why is Carol Pratt lying?

"The truth is Annie B never voted to raise electric rates.  She led a bipartisan group to lower them."

You can view her ad here:




She sounds upset.

I think I would be too.

- - -

Interestingly enough, the attacks by her opponent two years ago had as their main point the "fact" that Annie B was responsible for dramatic electric rate increases. Same as today.  You know how well that played out.

Maybe the local Democratic Party needs to be finding a new strategist.  This dawg ain't a'huntin'.

- - -

There are those who doubt me on the poll numbers.  Just as they did in 2007 (a huge Democrat year statewide and nationally; a year when Annie B won by double digits). 

I hereby predict she'll win again by double digits.

You can take it to Las Vegas.  It's that much of a sure thing.

On Party Affiliation

If I were to ever declare my allegiance to a political party, it would be for one reason and one reason only:

BABES.

These People Are Not To Be Trusted

If Obama and his team keep this up, they're sure to become the laughingstock of the 21st century:
Stimulus saved, created 650,000 jobs, gov't claims
By Matt Apuzzo and Brett J. Blackledge, Associated Press Writers

Washington – Nearly 650,000 jobs have been saved or created under President Barack Obama's economic stimulus plan, the government said Friday, and the White House declared the nation on track to meet the president's goal of 3.5 million by the end of next year. [link]
What's the response I'm looking for ...

Even "You lied!" doesn't provide the appropriate counter to this unadulterated bullshit.

How does Obama square his number with those from the Bureau of Labor Statistics?
Nonfarm payroll employment continued to decline in September (-263,000), and the unemployment rate (9.8 percent) continued to trend up, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. The largest job losses were in construction, manufacturing, retail trade, and government.

Among the unemployed, the number of job losers and persons who completed temporary jobs rose by 603,000 to 10.4 million in September. The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks and over) rose by 450,000 to 5.4 million. In September, 35.6 percent of unemployed persons were jobless for 27 weeks or more.

The civilian labor force participation rate declined by 0.3 percentage point in September to 65.2 percent. The employment-population ratio, at 58.8 per-cent, also declined over the month and has decreased by 3.9 percentage points since the recession began in December 2007.

About 2.2 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force in September, an increase of 615,000 from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) These individuals were not in the labor force, wanted and were available for work, and had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months. They were not counted as unemployed because they had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey.

Among the marginally attached, there were 706,000 discouraged workers in September, up by 239,000 from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) Discouraged workers are persons not currently looking for work because they believe no jobs are available for them.
That's about as bleak a picture as could be painted.

Couple that with the fact that nearly three million jobs in the USA have vanished since Obama signed his stimulus bill (the one that was to have created jobs).

And Obama's response?

We did wonderful.

Here's Crazy Joe Biden:

"We're starting to make real progress on the road to recovery."

Any more progress, you old coot, and we're all out of work.

- - -

Of course, one part of Obama's report may be accurate:

"Teachers and other education employees represent the largest number of jobs in the report — about 325,000."

Government jobs have grown dramatically under Obama.

Did anyone think the government stimulus would have any other consequences?  It stimulated growth in government.  But nothing else.

- - -

So what does the Obama administration base its laughable estimate on?  Even those in the know haven't a clue.  Politico:
White House officials announced Friday that they had counted exactly how many jobs were created or saved by recent stimulus spending: 640,329.

So how many were saved and how many created? They don’t know.

In a briefing with reporters, officials acknowledged they can’t tell the difference between jobs “saved,” and jobs “created” by the $787 billion stimulus package.

They said they also can’t tell the difference between private sector jobs and government jobs.

And they said that they had found and corrected significant errors in the data submitted in 57,000 separate reports to the federal government by Recovery Act funding recipients.
And they ridiculed Bush for his response to Katrina ...

- - -

Also, see "Jobs Created or Saved’ Is White House Fantasy."

- - -


And speaking of that crazy uncle locked in the attic: "Biden: Job Stats 'Not 100 Percent Accurate."

- - -

See "Hey, Ma’am, where are the jobs? Twice as many Californians lost jobs in one week in October than put to work in nine months by the 'stimulus.'"

A Monicker Is Born

Al Gore.


The shoe fits.

Friday, October 30, 2009

With Five Days To Go ...

... before the election, word has it that ...

... Anne B. Crockett-Stark is up by 11 points in her bid for reelection in the 6th House District.

Villagers never forget who was there to protect them when the wolves were at the door.

Question of the Day

Congressman Rick Boucher has made it known that he opposes the public option in health care legislation that is moving through Congress.  Now that Pelosi has rolled out, for full House consideration, a bill that includes the public option, will he oppose it, as his constituents demand?  Or will he do what he's always done - salute and do what he's told by his bosses in Washington?

Now would be a good time for Mr. Fightin' 9th to stand up for his real bosses.  Us.

When We Send Infants To Congress ...

... we get stories like this:


So, who's going to break this twit's heart and tell him that it takes something more than legislation to make it so.

How Do You Get Through To These People?

Frigid temperatures?  Unseasonably cold weather?

Why, it's global warming!

My God:
Sudden temperature drop jolts Mountain Province town
By Delmar Cariño, Philippine Daily Inquirer

Sarah Umayat, medical technologist of the town's rural health center, was forced to bring a vaccine thermometer to find out of it could be used to gauge the temperature.

Umayat said she hoped the thermometer could give the accurate reading.

At 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, the temperature read at 13 degrees Celsius.

The sudden dip in temperature had surprised residents, she said. She noticed the change in temperature after Typhoon "Pepeng" struck the Cordillera's upland towns.

"Maybe this is another effect of climate change," she said. [link]
Now you know why those who are trying to foist this mindless idiocy onto a gullible and IQ-less public changed the terminology from "global warming" to "climate change."  The temperature fluctuations - even those that plunge downward - occur and the nitwits of the world will attribute them to global warming ___fill in the blank___.

Quote of the Day

From Daniel Henninger:
People thought something small, agile and smart was coming to government, but so far it's turning out to be just big-box politics.

The health-care bill is big, complex, incomprehensible and coercive—all the things people hate nowadays.
"People," of course, being those fools who thought "Hope" and "Change" were some kind of campaign platform.

While Fire Rains Down On Our Troops ...

... their commander-in-chief is out golfing.

Someone needs to get this guy by the collar and explain what it is the gig entails:
Beyond Dithering
Investor's Business Daily editorial

As the fire grows in Afghanistan and U.S. troops suffer their worst casualties since Fallujah, the commander in chief remains AWOL on his intentions, delaying the tough decisions. Is he opting for defeat?

Afghanistan commander Gen. Stanley McChrystal warned in August that time was short to win this war. Now October is ending as the deadliest month in the Afghan war. With 55 dead since August, McChrystal's warning now stings.

Even so, each day brings a new excuse from the White House for delaying a decision on troop reinforcements McChrystal has sought. The goal posts move almost daily. This isn't leadership. [link]
 Yesterday's excuse?  Obama wants a study done of Afghan village elders' capabilities and attitudes before he decides on a war strategy.

The cold, painful truth: Barack Obama hasn't the leadership capability to command a drive-thru at McDonald's.  The sooner everyone comes to grips with that fact, the quicker we end this nightmare.

- - -

Charles Krauthammer:
It's as if Obama's presidency hasn't really started. He's still taking inventory of the Bush years. Just this Monday, he referred to "long years of drift" in Afghanistan in order to, I suppose, explain away his own, well, yearlong drift on Afghanistan.

This compulsion to attack his predecessor is as stale as it is unseemly. Obama was elected a year ago. He became commander in chief two months later. He then solemnly announced his own "comprehensive new strategy" for Afghanistan seven months ago. And it was not an off-the-cuff decision. "My administration has heard from our military commanders, as well as our diplomats," the president assured us. "We've consulted with the Afghan and Pakistani governments, with our partners and our NATO allies, and with other donors and international organizations" and "with members of Congress."

Obama is obviously unhappy with the path he himself chose in March. Fine. He has every right -- indeed, duty -- to reconsider. But what Obama is reacting to is the failure of his own strategy.  [my emphasis]
If it weren't tragic, it would be hilarious.

SW Virginia To Soon See Its First Tourist

With trumpets blaring:


What...ever.

'You Lied!'

Either that or Obama just doesn't have a clue as to what he's talking about.

Here's the report.  You decide.
Stimulus jobs overstated by thousands
By Brett J. Blackledge and Matt Apuzzo, Associated Press

Washington (AP) - An early progress report on President Barack Obama's economic recovery plan overstates by thousands the number of jobs created or saved through the stimulus program, a mistake that White House officials promise will be corrected in future reports.

The government's first accounting of jobs tied to the $787 billion stimulus program claimed more than 30,000 positions paid for with recovery money. But that figure is overstated by least 5,000 jobs, according to an Associated Press review of a sample of stimulus contracts.

The AP review found some counts were more than 10 times as high as the actual number of jobs; some jobs credited to the stimulus program were counted two and sometimes more than four times; and other jobs were credited to stimulus spending when none was produced.

For example:

- A company working with the Federal Communications Commission reported that stimulus money paid for 4,231 jobs, when about 1,000 were produced.

- A Georgia community college reported creating 280 jobs with recovery money, but none was created from stimulus spending.

- A Florida child care center said its stimulus money saved 129 jobs but used the money on raises for existing employees.

There's no evidence the White House sought to inflate job numbers in the report. But administration officials seized on the 30,000 figure as evidence that the stimulus program was on its way toward fulfilling the president's promise of creating or saving 3.5 million jobs by the end of next year. [link]
"There's no evidence the White House sought to inflate job numbers in the report."  There's no evidence that they have any credibility either.

Whether it's a matter of subterfuge or gross incompetence is of less importance than the fact that these people are simply not to be trusted.

Ever.

The Die Is Cast

The Democrats will pay for their treachery and deceit. 

This from a Democratic political consultant:
Monday's big news that Harry Reid was opting for the public option in the Senate health care bill provided one of those rare clarifying moments in American politics that actually exceeded the hype it generated. In one fell (and potentially felling) swoop, the soft-spoken Senate Majority Leader gave Democrats sole ownership over the riskiest experiment in social policy since the New Deal, gave the kiss of death to Obama's still-born hope of a new post-partisan era and, most significantly, cemented the reactionary battle lines that will likely shape our national elections for years to come.
We brought this on ourselves by electing this pack of vermin.

We are the ones who will have to correct our error as well. 

Come election day ...

Don't Let Them Fool You

Next time you read a piece in the mainstream press that extols the virtues of that federal "Cash for Clunkers" program - how it did so much to spur car sales and kick-start a faltering economy - you might want to remember this - It did no such thing:
Clunkers: Taxpayers paid $24,000 per car
Auto sales analysts at Edmunds.com say the pricey program resulted in relatively few additional car sales.
By Peter Valdes-Dapena, CNNMoney.com senior writer

New York (CNNMoney.com) -- A total of 690,000 new vehicles were sold under the Cash for Clunkers program last summer, but only 125,000 of those were vehicles that would not have been sold anyway, according to an analysis released Wednesday by the automotive Web site Edmunds.com.

The Cash for Clunkers program gave car buyers rebates of up to $4,500 if they traded in less fuel-efficient vehicles for new vehicles that met certain fuel economy requirements. A total of $3 billion was allotted for those rebates.

The average rebate was $4,000. But the overwhelming majority of sales would have taken place anyway at some time in the last half of 2009, according to Edmunds.com. That means the government ended up spending about $24,000 each for those 125,000 additional vehicle sales. [link]
24,000 bucks for per hunk of junk.

Only the federal government can perform at that level of performance.

So, what do you suppose your next doctor visit is going to cost you?

By the way, I've gone into the t-shirt business.

Yours for just $699.95.  While quantities last.

What Are They Afraid Of?

Nancy Pelosi unveiled her health care industry takeover bill yesterday to great mainstream media fanfare. "An historic moment," and all that.

One interesting thing about this production. Had you tried to attend the historic event, you - the person paying Pelosi's salary and, as a member of "the governed," providing consent for her sorry ass to even be there - you would have been shunted to the hinterlands, where you would have been out of the way.

Seeing is believing:





Citizen to Pelosi staffer: "Where can members of the public stand?"

Pelosi staffer to peon, pointing toward the distance: "All the way at the end."



 The faces have changed.  But the attitude hasn't.  Welcome to second-class citizenry.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Are You Willing To Risk Your Children's Future?

Dr. Steve Running, co-author of the Nobel Prize winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change studies, on the U.S. going it alone:
If the US passed a cap and trade and other countries did not, it wouldn’t work. It would ruin the US economy and it wouldn’t save the climate either. So this is a global issue, the global climate statistics are global in nature, global carbon emissions are global in nature, and we really have to have an international consensus of what to do. That is going to stretch our international diplomacy to its limit, there’s no doubt about that.
Oh, there's this too: Despite the fact that this global warming proponent feels that it could ruin our economy, he's in favor of us passing cap-and-trade anyway.

The Law Of Unintended Consequences

The Democrat-controlled government might pass an employer mandate to pay for health care.  The Democrat-controlled government might pass a cap-and-trade bill that might be a major burden on business large and small.  The Democrat-controlled government might pass legislation that raises the fuel costs of America's businesses.  Environmental legislation.  Taxing "the rich."  Repeal of Bush's tax cuts.  Taxing health care benefits.  Card Check.  Fuel efficiency mandates.  Highway tolls.  Pressuring lenders.  Consumer "protection."  Smoot-Hawley II.  On and on and on and ...

Should this news surprise anyone?
Political Uncertainty Puts Freeze on Small Businesses
By Gary Fields, writing in the Wall Street Journal

W. Michael Brown has scaled back hiring plans in his Virginia auto-parts stores. Carl Redman halted an expansion project at his Oregon contracting business. Bill Hammack is preparing layoffs at his road-construction company in Georgia.

The economy remains unsteady 22 months after the recession began, with banks restricting credit and consumers hunkering down. For these small businesses, and many others across the country, there's an additional dark cloud: uncertainty created by Washington's bid to reorganize a wide swath of the U.S. economy.

Many companies say they have responded by freezing hiring, cutting benefits and delaying expansion plans. With at least 60% of job growth historically coming out of the small-business sector, according to the government's Small Business Administration, that kind of inertia could impede an economic recovery.

Already, 7.2 million jobs have been lost during the recession, and forecasts show little or no job growth expected for the rest of the year. [link]
When you suspect that a tornado is approaching, you find a safe place to crawl into and hide.  That's what America's small-business owners are doing.  Expecting the impending storm.  Battening down the hatches.

There are those who buy into Obama's spiel about "change."  What those geniuses fail to comprehend - or are incapable of comprehending - are the unintended consequences that are sure to come from such chatter.

With the tornado thundering toward your community are you going to set the picnic table?  Or are you going to find a hole in the ground?

Welcome to American small business, 2009.

We're Not Asking For a Freaking Ph.D Dissertation, Barry

Just a decision that either brings victory for our troops in the field or an evacuation of Afghanistan so that no more lives are sacrificed.

This is beyond annoying:


For the love of God.

They Blame Rush

But since when did they start taking Rush's advice on anything?

Matt Latimer:
As an eyewitness to the final days of the Bush administration, I can report with assurance that the absolutely last people the powers that be listened to were conservative activists on radio and TV. If Chief of Staff Josh Bolten happened to catch Rush or Laura, it likely was only on his way to finding NPR. And Condi Rice wouldn’t take her marching orders from Glenn Beck if he renamed his program The Glenn and Condi Variety Hour and let her play piano concertos between segments.

Nonetheless, top Republican strategists in Washington are now testing out the "Rush is the problem" line. Fresh from managing two mammoth back-to-back election losses for their party, these gurus recently postulated in the influential D.C. publication Politico—our version of Variety—that “angry” conservatives riled up by Rush and Glenn and other “flamboyant” talk-show hosts were the true source of the party’s woes. Ed Gillespie, one of President Bush’s top aides, bemoans the very same talk-radio crowd his White House massaged and threatened for espousing “the kind of harsh rhetoric that the left used against former President Bush.” Pete Wehner, another Bushie, blasts Glenn Beck as “a rolling mix of fear, resentment, and anger.” Yet Beck and Rush (and Savage and Levin and Laura) had virtually nothing to do with the party’s collapse. It’s like a producer blaming the disaster that was The Astronaut’s Wife on Roger Ebert and Michael Medved (although that tactic may, in fact, have been tried).
If only the Republicans had paid attention to Rush and me.

But no.  They continued to believe in "electability."

Which worked out great for Mr. Electability himself, John McCain.

Good grief.

'May No Soldier Go Unloved'

Go to the 2009 Soldiers' Angels Valour-IT fundraiser and make a donation.  The effort is to bring laptops to those wounded in battle.

A worthy cause indeed.

Quote of the Day

From The Anchoress:
It takes no courage for an rich, unbelieving “artist” to piss on Christ. After all, that’s been done before. And Jesus voluntarily submitted himself to much worse, which means nothing an “artist” does to any image of Christ can do anything but reflect on the spiritual poverty of the “artist,” himself. For an “artist” to use Jesus for a cheap joke is about as “courageous” and “bold” as making a joke about George W. Bush before an audience of like-thinkers; it takes no courage at all.

But for an “artist” to make an identical satirical “joke” on Obama and his adorers? That would take great courage. That would be bold, and daring. And it would speak reassuring volumes about free speech in America.[link]
If asked, I'm sure this worm would say he most assuredly would piss on the image of Obama to get a laugh.  But it takes no courage to say such things.  Actions speak louder than empty words.

Economics 101

Obamanomics - or The Coming Conflagration - as viewed by Victor Davis Hanson:
When Obama talks of a trillion here for health care, a trillion there for cap-and-trade, it has a chilling effect. Does he include the cost of interest? Where will the money came from? Who will pay the interest? Has he ever experienced the wages of such borrowing in his own life? Did he cut back and save for his college or law school tuition, with part-time jobs? Did he ever run a business and see how hard it was to be $200 ahead at day’s end?

What destroys individuals, ruins families, and fells nations is debt—or rather the inability to service debt, and the cultural ramifications that follow. When farming, I used to see the futility in haggling over diesel prices, trying to buy fertilizer in bulk, or using used vineyard wire—when each day we were paying hundreds in dollars in interest on a “cut-rate” 14% crop loan.

The difference between the 5th century BC and late 4th century BC at Athens is debt–and not caused just by military expenditures or war; the claims on Athenian entitlements grew by the 350s, even as forced liturgies on the productive classes increased, even as the treasury emptied. At Rome by the mid-3rd century AD  the state was essentially bribing its own citizens to behave by expanding the bread and circuses dole, while tax avoidance became an art form, while the Roman state tried everything from price controls to inflating the coinage to meet services and pay public debts.

Integral to public debt are two eternal truths: a public demands of the state ever more subsidies, and those who pay for them shrink in number as they seek to avoid the increased burden. [link]
Oh, stop.  You're just trying to distract us from more important issues like health care for all and bank bailouts and auto company bailouts and mortgage-holder bailouts and airports in Murthaland and ...

The money will be there.  The money will be there.

* Hanson rightly faults "conservative" Republicans in Washington for going along with the madness.

It's That Time of Year

It's amazing what some fruit, a carving knife, and a few beers will fashion:


Click on the image to enlarge it.

Happy Halloween.

P.S. Don't drink and drive, er ... carve.

In the Race for the 6th District

ProjectVirginia has a profile of Delegate Anne B. Crockett-Stark posted to its website.  For those of you from this area, I thought you might be interested:
Candidate Spotlight: Anne Crockett-Stark (VA-6)
Chris Walling, ProjectVirginia’s Social Media Coordinator

Anne Crockett-Stark (VA-6) is one of Virginia’s pioneering women in politics. In 1978, Anne was the first female elected to the Wytheville Town Council, serving until 1982. She then served on the Wythe County Board of Supervisors from 2000-2006 and in 2003 became the first female chairperson of the board.In 2005, Anne was elected to the House of Delegates in the 6th district. As a delegate, Crockett-Stark has used her vast amount of government experience and understanding of the education system – she was a school teacher for thirty-two years – to help bring economic development and increased funding for education in Virginia. Delegate Anne Crockett-Stark understands the concerns of her constituents and knows what it takes to bring home results. For more information on Anne and her re-election bid visit: http://www.annebcrockett-stark.org/Home.html [link]
If experience means anything ...

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Ulysses Grant To Barack Obama:

“In war, anything is better than indecision. We must decide. If I am wrong, we shall soon find it out and can do the other thing. But not to decide…may ruin everything.”

See "256 dead US Soldiers in Afghanistan as Obama dithers and ignores McChrystal."

I Don't Disagree

If we're not there to win it, we're sure to lose it.
U.S. official resigns over Afghan war
By Karen DeYoung, Washington Post Staff Writer

When Matthew Hoh joined the Foreign Service early this year, he was exactly the kind of smart civil-military hybrid the administration was looking for to help expand its development efforts in Afghanistan.

A former Marine Corps captain with combat experience in Iraq, Hoh had also served in uniform at the Pentagon, and as a civilian in Iraq and at the State Department. By July, he was the senior U.S. civilian in Zabul province, a Taliban hotbed.

But last month, in a move that has sent ripples all the way to the White House, Hoh, 36, became the first U.S. official known to resign in protest over the Afghan war, which he had come to believe simply fueled the insurgency.

"I have lost understanding of and confidence in the strategic purposes of the United States' presence in Afghanistan," he wrote Sept. 10 in a four-page letter to the department's head of personnel. "I have doubts and reservations about our current strategy and planned future strategy, but my resignation is based not upon how we are pursuing this war, but why and to what end." [link]
On that last point regarding the strategic purposes of our presence in Afghanistan, Mr. Hoh is perfectly justified in having lost confidence.  Because Obama freely admits that he has no purpose.  Or strategy.  That's what this months long strategic confab is all about.  He's trying to figure out what he believes and square it with promises he's made.

This is no way to fight a war.

Hoh is right.  If we no longer have a good reason for being there, get out now.  Not another brave American life lost.  Now.

Why We Need Employers

With the exception of the federal government, which grants itself the authority to print as much money as it can find paper, all other governments have to live within their means.

And in the case of Radford losing its Intermet foundry and its remaining employees, well, the result is utter catastrophe:
City begins tallying cost of Intermet closing
By Amy Matzke-Fawcett, Roanoke Times

Radford -- The Intermet foundry's closing could cause the city a loss of revenue so large that it could be offset by steps as drastic as closing the fire department, museum and library or major increases in the city's real estate tax rate.

City Manager Tony Cox doesn't advocate any of those options but used them during Monday's council meeting to put in perspective the effect of the company's closing on city finances. He called it a "doomsday scenario."

"I do this just to give you a feel for the magnitude of this," Cox said. "Clearly, the answer lies somewhere in the middle."

Intermet plans to close the New River Foundry on Dec. 12, laying off its remaining 76 employees, according to a letter a foundry official sent to the city Oct. 15. [link]
In all, Radford expects to lose about $2 million in tax revenue from the closing.

And then there are the poor souls who find themselves out of work who won't be contributing revenue to their tax authorities.

Then there are the malls and grocery stores ...

Times Have Changed

To my way of thinking, James Webb should be counting his lucky stars that he ran for the Senate when he did.  The one-hit wonder of American politics - his golden oldie: "George Bush is an asshole and we need to get out of Iraq!" - was, by anyone's standards, the weakest and most inept campaigner in 21st century politics.  But those stars were aligned.  He being the anti-Bush brought success here in Virginia.  Much to everyone's surprise (including to his own friends and family, I'd bet).

Well, that was then.  And Bush is gone.

What now?

I think we need a new refrain, and "Fox News breeds the anti-Christ!" ain't gettin' it.

Case in point:
Something really scary for Obama's Democrats
By Wesley Pruden, Washington Times

This is one Mr. Deeds who apparently isn't going to town. The collapse of the Democratic campaign for governor of Virginia speaks volumes - chapters, anyway - about what the body politic is trying to tell Barack Obama's Democrats.

They're learning, painfully, that campaigning without George W. Bush is baffling, frustrating and scary. Worse, it offers a preview of what the congressional campaigning will be like next year.

For weeks, The Washington Post, the house organ of the national Democratic Party, pounded away at Bob McDonnell, the Republican nominee, for having written politically incorrect term papers in graduate school, citing his master's thesis, which decried abortion, gender-bending and radical feminism, as proof that he doesn't like women very much.

Only a month ago, Mr. Deeds, the Post's horse in the race, wouldn't talk about anything but the McDonnell graduate-school thesis - maybe a boon to master's and doctoral candidates who can't get anybody but a professor to read their wit and wisdom, but, as it turns out, a bore to voters in Virginia. The public-opinion polls continue to show Mr. McDonnell ahead, despite all the Post's ineffective deeds, and with a lengthening lead. [link]
Deeds needs a rallying cry, and fast.  "Out of Iraq!" worked for another mediocrity.  Why not for the Man From Bath?

Quote of the Day

From Investor's Business Daily:

"Democrats are considering rebranding the government-run public option as the 'competitive option.' There is nothing competitive about Washington wrecking the private health insurance industry."

"The New 'Option': Rebranding A Lie," editorial, October 27, 2009

Powerful Stuff

I think, when I invent a new widget, I'll ask former Senator Fred Thompson to go on television and promote it.  Nobody can do it better.

Here he is in a TV spot for New York independent candidate for the House of Representatives Doug Hoffman:




Is that folksy or what?

I would bet the good people of northern New York will eat it up.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Roanoke Times Endorses Another ... Oh, never mind

You know which party gets all their endorsements.

Tick Tock Tick Tock Tick ...

I will never rush the solemn decision of sending you into harm’s way.”
-- Barack Obama to the troops yesterday.

Troops to Obama: We're in harm's way, man.  Where are you?

Headlines on Drudge this morning:

•  14 Americans Killed in Afghanistan ...
•  Obama plays more golf in 9 months than Bush did in nearly three years ...
•  Troops hope sacrifices not in vain ...
•  Morale dips ...
•  War fatalities leave Obama with dilemma ...

Some of this may be unfair.  Obama, after all, did respond quickly to one dilemma of his own making:


It's good to know that he can act decisively when he wants to.

Meanwhile ...


Someone should tell our golfer-in-chief.

Don Quixote Would be Proud

Carbon sequestration is one of the most promising new concepts for curbing carbon dioxide emissions. Sequestration holds potential for Virginia’s vast coal reserves to be used in an efficient and environmentally-sound manner well into the future.
-- Democratic Senator James Webb 
The Race Against Nothing
By Rob Smith, American Thinker

We have busied ourselves in a race between technology and nothing. Huge amounts of money and effort are being spent to develop an approach to address the hoax that is man-induced global warming, arguably the definition of nothing. While much of the world struggles with even the basics for life, sufficient food, shelter, clean water, and basic disease prevention, the "developed" world tilts at the windmill of nothingness.

Thoroughly discussed in the news is the fact that the world CO2 concentrations are still alleged to be elevated, although they are within historic levels, while the cooling trend continues daily, no correlation. Warming was modeled and predicted by the purveyors of man-induced global warming.

One of the many approaches to address the impending doom of naught is the cutting-edge technology of "let's just bury it" -- in this case, an aspect of carbon sequestration. Already a carbon sequestration technology is quite well established. This technology is the ongoing sequestration of carbon by plants, both living then dying, but this simply won't do. Capturing CO2 emissions and pumping them into the ground is gaining in popularity on the established plant technology as a mitigation measure for the terrible effects of nada.

Geologic sequestration of CO2 is a testimony to our lack of reality, humanistic vanity, and proportionality addressing the pressing problems facing our world today. Shall we spend our efforts wisely and maintain our own economic abundance so that we may help others and ourselves? We provide huge contributions throughout the world to assist poor nations to grow crops, access clean water, overcome diseases that are only history to us, respond to natural and man-made disasters, as examples. Or shall we deal with the nullity that is man-induced global warming, cripple ourselves and diminish our ability to help others? [link]
"Geologic sequestration of CO2 is a testimony to our lack of reality, humanistic vanity, and proportionality."  It's also a dodge.  Democrats here in Virginia want the environmentalists to believe they are doing something to combat the scourge of global warming while, at the same time, wanting voters in the coalfields to believe they are doing everything they can to protect their way of life.

So far, Webb and his ilk have been able to get away with it.

So far ...

It Comes To Pass

I don't feel sorry for them.  In fact, I feel only disgust for both.

West Virginia Senator Jay Rockefeller and Governor Joe Manchin.  Two Democrats who campaigned enthusiastically for the candidate of their party who vowed to bankrupt the leading industry in their state. 

Coal.

I do feel for the miners though.  They don't deserve this.

The latest on Obama's move to end life as they know it in the coalfields:
War On Coal
By Amanda Carpenter, Washington Times

While campaigning for the Democratic presidential nomination, Barack Obama said his cap-and-trade tax plans would "bankrupt" anyone building a coal-fired power plant. Although those taxes haven't materialized, the Environmental Protection Agency has put the brakes on 79 surface mining permits in four states since he was elected.

The EPA says these permits could violate the Clean Water Act and warrant "enhanced" review. But the agency went even further last week, announcing plans to revoke a permit for the Spruce No. 1 Mine in West Virginia - a move that has caused anxiety among coal-state Democrats about the future of the industry under the Obama administration.


Although his favored cap-and-trade bill hasn't yet been passed, West Virginia's Democratic Gov. Joe Manchin III, who supported Mr. Obama's candidacy, called the EPA moves part of a stealth campaign to stifle the industry.

"Right now, my belief is that they're trying to kill off surface mining through regulation what they cannot get done through legislation," Mr. Manchin told MetroNews Talkline, a West Virginia call-in radio program, earlier this month. In West Virginia, 23 permits are being held up, with other affected states being Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee.

Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV, West Virginia Democrat, who also backed the Obama presidential bid, is outraged that the EPA is revoking a permit in his state. "I am angry with the EPA's announcement that they will use veto power to revoke the authorized Spruce Mine permit in Logan," he said. "It is wrong and unfair for the EPA to change the rules for a permit that is already active."

The West Virginia-based Register Herald was equally harsh. "Coal is under attack by the Obama administration," an Oct. 4 editorial said. "And now, even those who supported the Obama-Biden ticket in 2008 have come to that realization." [link]
"Have  come to the realization."  The baseball bat upside the head didn't get their attention (""So if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can. It's just that it will bankrupt them ...").  It took a knife plunging into their chest cavities to make them aware of what's going on.  Hey, this president is trying to harm us ...

The people of West Virginia deserve better than this.

You Know This Had To Hurt

With all the effort that the small people at the Washington Post put into getting Creigh Deeds elected governor this year, this is what they had to put to print yesterday:
McDonnell has double-digit lead in Va. governor's race, Post poll says
By Jon Cohen and Rosalind S. Helderman, Washington Post Staff Writers

Republican Robert F. McDonnell carries a double-digit lead over Democrat R. Creigh Deeds into the final week of the campaign for Virginia governor, according to a new Washington Post poll.

McDonnell is also buoyed by support outside of Northern Virginia, where he is currently outperforming all other top-of-the-ticket Republican candidates this decade. Statewide, McDonnell now leads Deeds among likely voters by a 55 to 44 percent margin. McDonnell, who narrowly defeated Deeds in the race for attorney general four years ago, has been above 50 percent in all four Post polls in the campaign. [link]
Time is drawing nigh ...

Monday, October 26, 2009

You Ask, I Answer

A commenter on one of today's posts thought a particular Roanoke Times article was important enough for me to (find it and ...) render an opinion on it.

Having read the piece, I agree.  It is important.  Very much so.

Here's the meat of it:
Lawmakers walk fine line of conflict
Bill Sizemore and Julian Walker , The Virginian-Pilot, and Michael Sluss, The Roanoke Times

The 2009 Virginia General Assembly was a fiscal nightmare. The national recession had left the state a record $3.7 billion short of revenue needed to balance its two-year budget, and everything was on the chopping block.

Nevertheless, the lawmakers found $250,000 in planning funds for a new library at the University of Virginia's College at Wise.

David Prior, chancellor of the branch campus in the Appalachian Mountains, couldn't contain his excitement. And he knew just whom to thank.

"Senator....LIBRARY!!!" he e-mailed state Sen. William Wampler, R-Bristol, hours after the Assembly adjourned. "I am frickin' stunned ... thrilled and deeply appreciative ... thank you does not capture the depth of my feeling for all you do ... I am not the huggy type, but would lay a Green Bay Packer, Brett come-from-behind winning drive hug on you were you standing here with me this morning."

A month later, Prior e-mailed Wampler with news of a different sort: He had a green light from the university board of visitors to offer the senator a half-time position on the college faculty. Wampler went on the payroll June 1 at an annual salary of $60,000. [link]
The related story that drew the most attention this past summer had to do with another delegate working a similar angle.   From the same article:
Each case is different, and none is an exact parallel to that of Del. Phil Hamilton, who lost his $40,000-a-year position at Old Dominion University in August following revelations that he was lobbying for the job while he was shepherding the state appropriation that funded it. The Newport News Republican is now the target of investigations by a House ethics panel and a federal grand jury.
First, I should put up a cautionary thought.  These guys and gals don't get paid squat for what they do.  What? $17,000 a year (plus expenses)?  So it's understandable that they are going to have outside income.  Some latitude is appropriate.

But the potential conflict of interest is there - in part because these folks don't make squat, one might argue.

And William Wampler, if the information presented above is accurate, crossed well over the line.  Perception, in politics, is reality, sir.  And though Mr. Wampler may be able to separate the quid from the pro quo in his mind, the voters of the commonwealth cannot.  And should not.  He is receiving cash across the table from the university for which he secured taxpayer cash.

That's wrong.  Unequivocally wrong.

William Wampler should have refused the position offered by the university or refused to continue being a member of the House of Delegates, and accepted the offer.  But he should not have done what he did.

There is another example cited in the article, of a politician - again a delegate to the House - who, by all appearances, handles himself properly, and understands where that clearly defined line is:
Del. David Nutter, R-Christiansburg, has worked for Virginia Tech since 1988. After his 2001 election to the House, he moved from the school's office of university relations to the office of economic development. He takes unpaid leave during legislative sessions and earned $61,000 in 2008.

Nutter said he is careful to avoid potential conflicts between his legislative and university work.

"I just try to walk the line as best I can," he said. "Fortunately, I haven't had to abstain much."

Nutter said that he abstained from voting on a 2006 bill authorizing management agreements that gave Tech, William and Mary and the University of Virginia greater autonomy "because that was so specific" to those institutions.
That, friends, is how it should be viewed.  And that's commendable.

Nutter avoids even the appearance of a conflict of interest.

How to handle this and maintain one's position (as well as one's credibility)?  "Nutter said that he abstained from voting ..."  It's as simple as that.

Some, it seems, just don't get it.  Or don't want to get it:
Sen. John Miller, D-Newport News, has worked for Christopher Newport University off and on since 1996. He is now associate director of CNU's Virginia Electronic Commerce and Technology Center. The center will cease operations Dec. 31, and Miller plans to leave the university then.

Elected to the Senate in 2007, he has taken unpaid leave during legislative sessions. He earned $79,000 in 2008. He introduced $33 million in CNU-related budget measures this year.

"I would hope we would not require everyone who works in the public sector to find another career after they are elected to the legislature," Miller said. "Christopher Newport University is a big part of my district, and the folks that work there are my constituents.

"When the president of the university comes to me and says 'I'd like you to offer budget amendments' that don't affect me in any way, I'm proud to introduce them."

Miller's wife, Sharron Kitchen Miller, also works at CNU in the office of university advancement. She earned $62,000 in 2008.
No, Johnny Boy, we don't expect you to find another career (for both you and your wife, ahem).  But we do expect you to stop padding the wallet of those who are padding yours.  There's no gray area here.  It's flat out black-and-white wrong.  So stop it.

Either that or have a widely read and influential weblog denounce you for the impropriety of your actions and watch as I call upon the voters of your district to bounce your ass from office. (Like you and your wife really need the state gig anyway).

Why don't you have a sit-down with Dave Nutter and have him explain to you how to avoid the obvious.  Learn the word A-B-S-T-E-N-T-I-O-N.  And F-I-D-U-C-I-A-R-Y.  Make us proud.

Or move on.  And make us proud.

- - -

* By the way, a simple heads-up when things like this appear in the paper would be nice.  That's partly why I offer up my email address.  Use it.  I try to read EVERYTHING written here in the United States EVERY DAY, but I occasionally miss one or two news items that are worth comment.  Drop me a line.  I enjoy the mental exercise. And I enjoy equally the opportunity to expose the work of good reporters to the world around us.

And thanks to the commenter for bringing this article to my attention.  Good stuff.

This Is Interesting

As you know, the Roanoke Times yesterday endorsed the candidacy of Creigh Deeds for governor (poor guy; he didn't deserve the humiliation).

On the same day the Bristol Herald Courier endorsed Bob McDonnell.

Here's what's interesting:  The rationale behind those two decisions.

Here's part of the Roanoke Times's explanation:
The difference is strikingly evident on the single most crucial issue facing the state: how to fund Virginia's crumbling and inadequate transportation infrastructure.

McDonnell boasts that he has a plan while Deeds only promises to work with the General Assembly to develop one.

McDonnell would have a point if not for one thing: His plan, as detailed as it may be, is a farce.
Here's the Herald Courier's reasoning:
Virginia has two chief problems – higher than acceptable unemployment and transportation needs across the commonwealth. We believe Republican Robert F. McDonnell has outlined the most robust plans to address both as governor of Virginia.

McDonnell’s transportation plan includes 12 measures – from privatizing ABC stores to adding tolls to issuing bonds – with the money going directly to transportation.

Democrat R. Creigh Deeds proposes a bipartisan commission to study the problems, if he is elected.

It’s an inclusive step, but one that seems slow in a state with enormous and mounting transportation needs. Everything McDonnell is pitching might not work, but he has done more to offer specific solutions during this race.
Two views that diverge.

Where both agree?

Deeds has no plan.

For that the Herald Courier rejects his candidacy while the Times, being the deep thinkers that the boys there are, well, the Times is apparently okay with being left clueless ("Deeds could have shown more political leadership by putting forth a specific proposal with clear sources of revenue. But he at least has the guts to tell Virginians the truth."  Like O.J. Simpson was being truthful when he said, "I think I'm a good guy."  No faulting that truth.)

Anyway, two perspectives on the same topic.

The Bristol Herald Courier rejects the candidacy of Creigh Deeds for governor because - in part - he has no plan for transportation.  The Roanoke Times supports him for the same reason.

You decide which holds more credibility.

Another Reason To Vote For McDonnell

The radically liberal National Organization for Women (Virginia chapter) endorses Creigh Deeds.

It's help like this that has doomed the poor guy.

Food For Thought

A quote from Cardinal Sean O'Malley of the Boston diocese of the Catholic Church:

"We will stop the practice of abortion by changing the law, and we will be successful in changing the law if we change people's hearts."

It's not about legislation.  It's about convincing people that the lives lost were - are - precious.

The legislation will come.

Quote of the Day

From one of the Democratic Party's shining stars.  A man who came close to being president of the United States.

John Kerry:

"I don't want--you know, I don't even--I don't think that's appropriate, de facto, whatever, whatever."

The Edward Everett of our time.

Out Of Control

You thought the government spending $1400000000000 more than it took in in revenue this year was a point of concern? 

Did you forget who's in charge in Washington?

You might want to be very concerned:
The Spending Rolls On
Wall Street Journal

The White House disclosed the other day that the fiscal 2009 budget deficit clocked in at $1.4 trillion, amid the usual promises to do something about it. Yet even as budget director Peter Orszag was speaking, House Democrats were moving on a dozen spending bills for fiscal 2010 that total 12.1% in more domestic discretionary increases.

Yes, 12.1%.

Remember, inflation is running close to zero, or 0.8%.

These spending hikes do not include the so-called mandatory spending programs like Medicare and Medicaid, which exploded by 9.8% and 24.7%, respectively, in the just-ended 2009 fiscal year. All of this largesse is also on top of the stimulus funding that agencies received in 2009. The budget for the Environmental Protection Agency rose 126%, the Department of Education budget 209% and energy programs 146%.

House Republicans on the Budget Committee added up the 2009 appropriations, the stimulus funding and 2010 budgets and found that federal agencies will, on average, receive a 57% increase in appropriated funds from 2008-2010. By contrast, real family incomes fell by 3.6% last year. There's no recession in Washington. [link]
Make no mistake. The Democrats in Washington cannot keep this wild and undisciplined effort up.  The day of reckoning is approaching.

This Can't Be Good

Even the notoriously liberal "60 Minutes" is questioning the viability of government-run health care?  Can this be true?
'60 Minutes': Medicare Fraud Raises 'Troubling Questions About Our Government's Ability to Manage a Medical Bureaucracy'
By Noel Sheppard, NewsBusters

"60 Minutes" did a fabulous exposé Sunday on Medicare fraud that should be required viewing for all people who support a government run healthcare program in this country.

The facts and figures presented by CBS's Steve Kroft were disturbing as were the details concerning how shysters bilk the system for an estimated $60 billion a year.

As Kroft warned viewers in the segment's teaser, "We caution you that this story may raise your blood pressure, along with some troubling questions about our government's ability to manage a medical bureaucracy." [link] [emphasis in the original]
We already know the government can't run a post office bureaucracy. What makes anyone think it can manage 1/8th of our economy - health care! - without killing off the population?

Can we talk about this?

If This Doesn't Frighten You ...

Think about it.  The joker who is promising cheaper, more abundant, more effective health care coverage for all Americans is the same dude who is overseeing the swine flu vaccination program.

We're in big trouble, folks:
From the people who brought us the swine flu vaccine shortage - Government-run health care!
By Mark Tapscott, Washington Examiner

President Obama's late-night declaration of a nationwide public health emergency last night shouldn't be allowed to obscure the most important lesson of the developing swine flu crisis - The same government that only weeks ago promised abundant supplies of swine flu vaccine by mid-October will be running your health care system under Obamacare.

On Sept. 13, Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Health and Human Services, told ABC's "This Week" program that the government was on schedule to deliver an "ample supply" of swine flu vaccine by mid-October:

"We're on track to have an ample supply rolling by the middle of October. But we may have some early vaccine as early as the first full week in October. We'll get the vaccine out the door as fast as it rolls off the production line."

But here we are five weeks later and news reports are coming in from across the nation of long waiting lines of people wanting the shot, but being turned away because of grossly inadequate supplies. The typical explanation from public health offiials is that the swine flu vaccine requires more time to be cultivated than seasonal flu vaccine.

That's no doubt true, but did federal public health officials just discover that fact? [link]
Obama wants to run the doctors' offices, the hospitals, the insurance companies, the research and development facilities, the hospices, and ... ultimately the funeral homes.  One-eighth of our economy.  And he can't even get this right. 

I have a suggestion.  How about we give him the task of lighting the National Christmas Tree on time and without incident before we let him mess up our lives and start killing Americans off in droves.  I'd feel a little more comfortable with Mr. Wonderful, a man who was elected health care emperor without ever having accomplished anything in his entire life, a man who is not having an auspicious, confidence-building beginning.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

It Must Be The Booze

Dan Radmacher, editorial page editor of the Roanoke Times, on August 2:
I'm getting awfully frustrated with Creigh Deeds' dance on transportation.

[snip]

"Maybe it's well placed, but Deeds' shy-on-specifics strategy demonstrates a fundamental lack of faith in Virginia's electorate. He doesn't trust the people of this state to listen to straight talk and make rational decisions."
The same Roanoke Times editorial page this morning, in its endorsement announcement of Mr. Shy-on-Specifics:

"The longtime senator is the candidate for governor who is serious about the most pressing issue facing Virginia: transportation."

What to make of this?

That must have been one "serious" "dance" Mr. Deeds was performing for ol' Dan.

One serious dance indeed.

Fizzzzzle

Wow.  It looks like the environmentalists have really mobilized their base to get out there and promote efforts to combat "climate change."  Apparently rallies were held in hundreds of cities across the globe yesterday to raise global warming awareness.

In this morning's Roanoke Times:
Call to climate awareness
International Day of Climate Action was observed around the world Saturday, including in Southwest Virginia.
By Neil Harvey

The plan in Albuquerque, N.M., was for 350 people to bang 350 gongs.

In Nashville, Tenn., volunteers hoped to distribute 350 shovels of organic compost to urban gardens.

And 350 residents of Boise, Idaho, were scheduled to have their pictures taken for a collage while standing on the banks of the state's Sawtooth Lake.

These and many other number-themed environmental events were slated to occur in more than 1,000 communities around the world Saturday, including the Roanoke and New River valleys, according to the Web site 350.org, a movement that seeks to raise environmental awareness. The organization assembled the events for this weekend as part of its International Day of Climate Action.

The "350" theme stems from climatologist James Hansen's studies regarding effects that occur when the carbon level in Earth's atmosphere exceeds 350 parts per million. Hansen, who heads NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, said the atmospheric carbon level currently sits at about 390 parts per million. [link]
Gosh.  Demonstrations in over a thousand communities.  This must be a force to be reckoned with.  And something that should concern us all.

Or not.

Let's read that article again, with emphasis on that which redefines the whole story:
The plan in Albuquerque, N.M., was for 350 people to bang 350 gongs.

In Nashville, Tenn., volunteers hoped to distribute 350 shovels of organic compost to urban gardens.

And 350 residents of Boise, Idaho, were scheduled to have their pictures taken for a collage while standing on the banks of the state's Sawtooth Lake.

These and many other number-themed environmental events were slated to occur ...
This isn't a news article.  It's a press release.  A public relations announcement.  Propaganda.  Probably originating in the form of a fax from this bunch.

So.  Big plan.  Any action?

Here's a tell-tale warning sign that the event(s) didn't come off as anticipated.  From that same Times article:

"The [350] she hoped for, however, did not materialize. In the end, 45 guests signed the event list and only about a dozen of the [symbolic kites] were in the air at the same time ..."

Hmmm.  So the event was a bust here in Southwest Virginia.

But what about those other cities cited as scheduling big hoopdedoos?

Albuquerque?  the city's largest paper, the Journal, has nothing on the event this morning.

Nashville?  Search The Tennessean and you get this from today's news: "Your search - 'International Day of Climate Action' - did not match any documents."  Nothing. (The paper even has an "Environment" section and, although it does have an article dealing with radioactive rabbit poop, it has nothing on the International Day of Climate Action event, if one took place.)

Boise?  My Yahoo search of the site brought this response:
We didn't find any Web pages containing "International Day of Climate Action".
Please refine your query and try again.
Suggestions:
- Check your spelling.
- Try different words.
- Try words that mean the same thing.
- Try fewer words.
Nothing there either.

So where did this great outpouring of concern for "climate change" actually occur if it didn't take place in those cities where rallies were "planned," "hoped for," "scheduled," and "slated"?

In the minds of those who believe in "climate change." That's where.  The land of illusion. The land of make-believe.

The Roanoke Times.

A Question For Mr. Gore

Boy, the truth can sometimes be ... an inconvenient truth:
Where are the Hurricanes Mr. Gore?
By Alan Caruba, Warning Signs

That god among men and Nobel Peace Prize winner, Al Gore, told us in “An Inconvenient Truth”, his Oscar-winning documentary, that we had to brace for increasing numbers of hurricanes as the result of global warming.

So, where are the hurricanes of 2009, Mr. Gore?

The hurricane season that runs from June through October is about to end with nothing more than one weak to borderline moderate tropical storm that hit Florida’s panhandle, but there have been NO hurricanes. [link]
Just one of the many falsehoods* told by Crazy Al in his Oscar winning piece of fiction.

* Al Gore, in predicting a surge in hurricanes, proved himself to be wrong.  That does not make his pronouncement a lie.  I bring this up so that the boneheads who claim that then-President Bush's predictions of the existence of Iraqi WMD constituted a lie understand the difference between lies and things that ultimately prove to simply be inaccurate.

Quote of the Day

Ed Morrissey:
Now who’s the go-it-alone cowboy?  Obama has damaged relations with the UK, France, the Czech Republic, and Poland, which even Joe Biden was forced to admit yesterday.  Instead, Obama has focused his friendlier attention on Russia and Iran.  What has Obama and the US received in return?  Laughter over Hillary Clinton’s amateurish “reset button” and zero cooperation on Iranian nuclear weapons.  And this is “smart power”?
"Who lost France?" Hot Air, October 24, 2009

H1N1, The Hurricane Katrina of 2009

Sorry. I just wanted to tweak those on the left with that headline. For if George W. Bush had still been at the helm and America's response to the H1N1 virus had been so screwed up, you'd bet the mainstream press would be howling "Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job."

But Obama's in charge. So ...
Obama declares swine flu a national emergency
By Philip Elliot, Associated Press

Washington – President Barack Obama declared the swine flu outbreak a national emergency, giving his health chief the power to let hospitals move emergency rooms offsite to speed treatment and protect noninfected patients.

The declaration, signed Friday night and announced Saturday, comes with the disease more prevalent than ever in the country and production delays undercutting the government's initial, optimistic estimates that as many as 120 million doses of the vaccine could be available by mid-October.

Health authorities say more than 1,000 people in the United States, including almost 100 children, have died from the strain of flu known as H1N1, and 46 states have widespread flu activity. So far only 11 million doses have gone out to health departments, doctor's offices and other providers, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention officials. [link]
This may be the laugher of the day:

"Administration officials said the declaration was a pre-emptive move designed to make decisions easier when they need to be made."

When decisions need to be made? When are they planning on making them? Some time after a freaking national emergency has been declared?!

Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job indeed.

Well, someone's gotta say it.

- - -

For the record, I think the story, in the end, will be that the problem with the virus, though serious, is no more serious than in any other flu season.  The crisis mentality is what's worth watching develop.

- - -

Looks like I'm not the first to make the connection to Hurricane Katrina.  See "Swine Flu Update."

Always Been Attracted To The World of Trains?

You're going to love Hamburg's Miniatur Wunderland:



10,000 HO scale train cars running on 6.8 miles of indoor track.

Something to behold.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

This Is How Obama Treats His Friends?

Looks like poor Creigh Deeds has now been tossed into the same category with Fox News:
Are Democrats bailing on Deeds?
The Washington Post

Washington -- Sensing that victory in the race for Virginia governor is slipping away, Democrats at the national level are laying the groundwork to blame a loss in a key swing state on a weak candidate who ran a poor campaign that failed to fully embrace President Obama until days before the election.

Senior administration officials have expressed frustration with how Democrat Creigh Deeds has handled his campaign for governor, refusing early offers of strategic advice and failing to reach out to several key constituencies that helped Obama win Virginia in 2008, they say.

A senior administration official said Deeds badly erred on several fronts, including not doing a better job of coordinating with the White House.

A second administration official speaking on condition of anonymity, said: "Obama, Kaine and others had drawn a road map to victory in Virginia. Deeds chose another path." [link]
This is painful.

And unseemly.

The fact that Bolling is leaving Wagner in the dust and Cuccinelli is trouncing Shannon should tell you that this goes beyond anything Deeds did or didn't do.  In fact, the argument can - and will - be made that this is a referendum on Obama's success - or lack thereof - in getting this once-great country back on its feet.

But to the point:  With friends like these,who needs enemies?

- - -

It appears that Democrats here in Virginia are not taking Obama's back-stabbing well.  See "Democrat blasts White House for anonymous sniping."

As you might imagine, they have a different excuse for Deeds's impending drubbing.  Roanoke's own king-maker, Mudcat Saunders, came up with this gem:

"The Democrats right now are a real bruised brand right now where I am.  There was so much energy put into last year's race, everybody's just burned out. You can't get anybody fired up."

Call it The Viagra Effect.

The fact that McDonnell has been able to do just that - get his followers standing tall and all-fired-up - kinda shoots that apology  down.

Got a better excuse there, Mudcat?

Innovative

I wanted to bring to your attention a kinda cool interactive map that the Roanoke Times has put together that shows all the mountains that surround the Roanoke valley.  Go to "Interactive graphic: Mountains of the Roanoke area."

Here's the cool part:

"Mouse over each mountain in the area to find out more -- and listen to the music of the mountains as you do. Then explore a little further -- learn more about exploring the ridges in our area, and catch a glimpse from some of the favorites."

You're left wondering: How did they do that?

Shopping For That Perfect Christmas Gift?

Think your husband has everything?

Think again.

What every man needs: 12 gauge armor piercing shotgun shells.

Believe me, he'll love you for it.

* And you know that pesky dog that belongs to the annoying neighbor that roots through your garbage on a regular basis and makes a mess of it?  Fuss and fume no more.  It may cost you $129.95 but your problem is eliminated!


** Yes, I wrote that sentence about the pesky dog and the annoying neighbor as you read it just to have a little fun.

Prognosis Improves For Conservative Takeover in 2010

Quote of the Day

On that mysterious overflight of Northwest 188 bound for Minneapolis the other day, the New York Times:
A police report released Friday said the pilots passed breathalyzer tests and were apologetic after the flight. The report also said that the crew indicated they had been having a heated discussion about airline policy.

But aviation safety experts and other pilots were deeply skeptical they could have become so distracted by shop talk that they forgot to land an airplane carrying 144 passengers. [link]
A multiple choice quiz.  Which is the preferable excuse for the flight crew of a passenger airliner with 144 souls on board to have flown 150 miles beyond their destination:

a) "We were drunk."

b) "We fell asleep."

c) "We forgot what we were doing."

Let's hope to God there's a (d).

For The 'Family Values' Voter

"The Family Foundation Action" has released a neat little YouTube checklist of issues (hey, it's 2009, you think they're going to use snail mail?) that are important to the social values voters here in the commonwealth.  Issues centering around abortion, hate crimes, gay marriage, abstinence education, etc.  Want to know where Creigh Deeds and Bob McDonnell stand on the issues that are most important to you?

The video:





Information is a good thing.  The more the better.  If you believe in democracy, as I do, you know that an informed electorate is critical to America's future.  Use this information to make Virginia a better place to live and prosper.

For more information on The Family Foundation Action go here.

What's Going On Here?

Before we get into that upstate New York race and talk a bit about the Whig Party (say what?), it might be instructive to read this:
73% of GOP Voters Say Congressional Republicans Have Lost Touch With Their Base
Rasmussen Reports

President Obama told an audience at a Democratic Party fundraiser Wednesday night that Republicans often “do what they’re told,” but GOP voters don’t think their legislators listen enough to them.

Just 15% of Republicans who plan to vote in 2012 state primaries say the party’s representatives in Congress have done a good job of representing Republican values.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 73% think Republicans in Congress have lost touch with GOP voters from throughout the nation. Twelve percent (12%) are undecided. [link]
73% of Republicans think Washington Republicans don't represent them.  Add to that the mountain of voters - like me - who'd like to someday consider themselves to be Republicans if they were ever given a good reason why they should, and you have a whole lot of disaffected people out here with which to make a pretty darn powerful party.

With that understood, what's going on in New York's 23rd Congressional District?
Top Republicans jump ship in NY-23
By Andy Barr,

Some of the most prominent names in national Republican Party politics are lining up against the GOP nominee in a key upstate New York House special election, the latest being former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, who weighed in Friday.

In endorsing Conservative Party nominee Doug Hoffman in the Nov. 3 contest, Santorum joined former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, former House Majority Leader Dick Armey, Minnesota Rep. Michelle Bachmann, former Tennessee Sen. Fred Thompson, and former presidential candidate Steve Forbes, all of whom announced their backing for the conservative third-party candidate this week.

Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty suggested Friday that he might be the next well-known Republican to break with the party establishment and support Hoffman. When asked about the race Friday during an interview with ABC, he expressed frustration with GOP nominee Dede Scozzafava and said he will “probably” endorse in the race.

Scozzafava, a state assemblywoman who supports gay marriage, abortion rights and has a close relationship with leading labor officials in her region, has been the target of sustained criticism from conservatives who claim that she is so liberal that they cannot in good conscience support her candidacy. As evidence, they point to her unofficial endorsement from the leading liberal blog Daily Kos. [link]
Reminds one of Obama's late-innings abandonment of Creigh Deeds here in Virginia, no?

Well, no.

In the case of poor Creigh, he agrees philosophically with everything the Democratic Party - state and national - stands for.  Obama and friends are simply scrambling to not be associated with his upcoming loss.  But in the New York race, there is a growing effort within the Republican Party to better define itself.  To get away from the idiotic "electability" thought process that brought the GOP big wins for both President Dole and President McCain.  I'm sure that's what prompted the state party to endorse the candidacy of the liberal Dede Scozzafava.  She was "electable."

New York?  Liberal?  Makes perfect sense, right?

Well, not to upstate New Yorkers, who are, by and large, far from liberal, but who find themselves in the throes of a liberal mindset in Albany that has brought about economic ruin to the area they call home. So conservatives there - and they are legion - are turning away from the GOP candidate and are moving toward ... the conservative.

Sweet.

Which brings us to the Whig Party. (The party of Lincoln, by the way.  Look it up).

The Whig Party was powerful enough in 1848 to elect Zachary Taylor for president.  And a mere decade later it was in ruins.  In 15 years it had effectively disappeared.

Why?

Because a large percentage of its membership had decided that the party no longer represented its base.  Those members (most of them anyway) switched to a new party that called itself the Republican Party.

Think about it (Newt).  Do something about it.

You want the GOP to be the party of inclusion?  I'd be concerned right now, if I were you, about it being a party.

We'll Keep Hammering The Message Home

Before too long, the blockheads in Washington will get the message.

From that Pew survey of ongoing American opinion about global warming:


I should clarify that header for the Pew people.  In fact NOBODY IS EXPERIENCING  SOLID EVIDENCE OF GLOBAL WARMING.  Because the planet, since last century (1998) has been cooling.  It's the perception that's changing.  And changing for the better.

Now if we can get the message to the nitwits in Washington ...

Why We Love Annie B

Delegate Anne B. Crockett-Stark (R-Wytheville) has a new TV ad running.  It hits on all the key points that a good conservative would want to see in a 30-second spot:




"Annie B is working for tax incentives to bring new businesses and jobs."

"She's fighting higher taxes that hurt struggling families."

"She's working to grow our economy and not our government."

And, of course, what she's known for most:

"Working throughout the district to solve people's problems."

Good stuff.

You go, girl.

It's Gotta Be Annie B.

* It's refreshing to see a political ad that doesn't have the candidate saying something goofy like, "I'm for education." Or "I'm for good schools and clean air."  Which falls in the same category as "I'm for all life on earth continuing to exist." Duh.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Vote Accordingly

The laughably liberal Roanoke Times this morning predictably endorses the candidacies of three very weak and inexperienced - but equally liberal - Democrats for delegate seats in the upcoming election.

In the 8th District here.

In the 7th and 12 Districts here.

As with the case of their previous endorsements of an inexperienced retired dentist (here), and a political lightweight (here), Democrats all, expect every one of these wannabes to go down in flames come November 3.

Here's a bit of advice for you political strategists and handlers: Do your best to avoid The Roanoke Times Political Endorsement.  Otherwise known as The Kiss Of Death.

And He's Revered By Millions

Nobel economics winner Paul Krugman argues in the New York Times this morning that China's weak currency is bad.

Nobel economics winner Paul Krugman argues in the New York Times this morning that America's weak currency is good.

Did I mention that he won a Nobel in economics?

Did I mention that he writes for the New York Times?

Callin' The Weasels Out

The Washington Post has a reputation of being a principled newspaper.  If the principle serves.  If the principle is dragged out principally for the purpose of getting liberals elected to public office.

And then there are those occasions where principle is left on the shelf and gutter politics takes over:
The Political Establishment v. Ken Cuccinelli
By Richard Viguerie and Mark Fitzgibbons, writying in The American Thinker

Predictably, The Washington Post, the Washington establishment's newspaper of record, endorsed the Democratic candidate for Virginia Attorney General in the upcoming November 3rd election. Despite previously praising Ken Cuccinelli, the Republican candidate, for his principled independence even from his own party, The Post worries that Ken Cuccinelli "would treat the job of attorney general as an ideological crusade."

WaPo wouldn't object, however, if the AG candidate were a liberal crusader. You see, it has been Democratic attorneys general who redefined, and many say, abused, their positions as chief legal officers of their respective states for ideological -- indeed highly partisan -- purposes. WaPo has always seemed to like, if not outright support, liberal AG crusaders. [link]
Odd how those lofty principles ebb and flow depending on party affiliation.

Odd indeed.

That's Why It's Still Called Evolution 'Theory'

First we get a report that it's the missing evolutionary link.  Then we find out it's not:


Be skeptical of religion if you choose.

But I wouldn't bet the farm on conclusions jumped to by the Darwin crowd either.

Case in point ...

Orwell Winces

The United States Senate yesterday approved broadened thought-crime legislation.

And, naturally, both of our liberal Democrat senators here in Virginia voted in favor.

What will they have to say when liberal thoughts are deemed to be hate?

I Wonder What Really Happened

The company line: The pilots were "distracted."


Distracted.  Sure.

Headline of the Day

It don't get better than this:


Burrrrn.