Quote

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

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Get a Grip

The idiots at the Charleston (WV) Gazette are at it again. Mountains from molehills, that is. That which they do best. Which isn't saying much.

The latest shocking revelation:
Fraud: Spurring the crisis?
Charleston Gazette editorial

Disturbingly, two top federal investigators testified last week that big-time white-collar fraud might have driven part of the U.S. mortgage crisis that helped drag the nation's economy into a tragic tailspin.

FBI Deputy Director John Pistole told a Senate hearing that an "exponential rise" in mortgage scams is overwhelming his agency. He said the FBI has 530 such probes in progress "including 38 corporate fraud and financial institution matters directly related to the to the [sic] current financial crisis." The cases involve "financial statement manipulation, accounting fraud and insider trading," he said.

Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., exploded:

"I don't think we've paid enough attention to the mortgage and financial fraud that have so dramatically contributed to the economic downturn. It is now becoming clear that unscrupulous mortgage brokers and Wall Street financiers were among the principal contributors to this economic collapse. I want to see people prosecuted. Frankly, I want to see people go to jail." [link]

On second thought, I can't blame the imbeciles at the Gazette entirely for this bit of silliness. Patrick Leahy deserves some of the credit as well, though I'm reluctant to include John Pistole since the quote attributed to him doesn't relate at all to the Gazette's intended argument.

Look. Here are a few facts that these wild-eyed morons should try to get their brains around:

1) There are an estimated 150 million home mortgages currently extant in the USA.

2) Those mortgages have a combined value of somewhere in the neighborhood of $10.5 trillion.

3) Pistole tells us that his office currently has 530 "probes" in process.

4) That's a very concerning 0.00000000004% of the total financial contracts in place (530 divided by 150,000,000) (that's assuming those 530 "probes" become 530 convictions).

That (potential) fraud "might have driven part of the U.S. mortgage crisis that helped drag the nation's economy into a tragic tailspin"?

Are they serious?

Unfortunately, they are.

But they're also out of their freaking minds.

What To Make Of This?

Would you find this distracting come Sunday morning?
Pastor Charged With Indecent Exposure
By Darius Radzius, Bristol Herald Courier

A Tri- Cities area pastor faces charges of indecent exposure. Police say the man was masturbating in the boys and men’s underwear isle [sic] [at the Dollar General store in Appalachia].

Police arrested Millard Clifton Tolbert, 58, for indecent exposure in Appalachia. Tolbert is the pastor of Trinity United Methodist Church of Big Stone Gap.

“He told the Appalachia officer that he knew he should not have been doing this and was concerned if he was going to go to jail or get in the newspaper,“ said [Ron Elkins, Wise County commonwealth’s attorney]. [link]
I ... am ... at ... a ... loss ... for ... words ...

... except ... to ... say ...

For the love of God.

Is This The Way It's Going To Be?

Obama makes a withering number of campaign promises - some in direct conflict with others - and then immediately starts reneging on them once in office?

He makes all kinds of claims about how we can't wait around debating his stimulus plan - that we need to make bold and decisive action now - just before he and the family go on a Chicago vacation as soon as it passes Congress?

He tells us all the neat things that his stimulus plan is going to do for the economy and, once passed, begins to tell us what it won't actually do?

Is this guy for real? Who does he think he's playing with? Idiots?

As is now true to form, here's the latest affront:
White House dampens stimulus expectations
By Alan Elsner, Reuters

Washington (Reuters)- President Barack Obama's aides warned Americans on Sunday not to expect instant miracles from the $787 billion economic stimulus bill he will sign this week, but said it would help eventually.

"There will be signs of activity very quickly," David Axelrod, the White House senior adviser, said on "Fox News Sunday." "But it's going to take time for that to show up in the statistics. The president has said it's likely to get worse before it gets better." [link]
And if that's not pathetic enough for you, there's this ditty:

The White House hopes the package will save or create 3.5 million jobs. Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Economy.com, said on "Fox News Sunday" that was likely too optimistic.

"By my estimate, it will add 2 to 2.5 million jobs, more than would be the case without stimulus, by the end of 2010. That translates into a lower unemployment rate of about a point to a point and a half," he said.

At this rate, we'll be approaching the truth in about two years.

Good God.

Why These People Are Dangerous

The New York Times comes out in favor of giving the citizens of Washington D.C. a voting congressperson. "Taxation without representation," and all that:
‘We’ll Take It’
editorial

This nation’s founders rebelled against taxation without representation, but residents of Washington are still without a meaningful voice in Congress. A bill to give the District of Columbia a voting member in the House of Representatives has taken an important step forward, and it could become law this year. The bill is not ideal, but it would redress a longstanding injustice. Congress should pass it.

Some critics insist that the bill is unconstitutional because the Constitution speaks of House members representing “the several states.” The better argument, as respected constitutional scholars argue, is that Article I’s “District Clause” gives Congress sweeping authority over the District of Columbia. That authority includes the right to award it Congressional representation. [link]
How weak is that for an argument? Despite the blatant unconstitutionality of the scheme ("The House of Representatives shall be composed of members chosen every second year by the people of the several states, and the electors in each state shall have ..."), current members of Congress, because they have "sweeping authority" over the District of Columbia, can do whatever they please?

So can Congress create 100 new (Democratic) reps for the District if they so choose? What part of "sweeping authority over the District of Columbia; that authority includes the right to award it Congressional representation" doesn't allow for a whole pile of representation?

If these slimeballs in Washington are going to make it up as they go along, and ignore the very document that outlines the parameters to which they should adhere, why not 100 new smiling faces in D.C.? 1000?

Be reasonable, they would argue?

Reasonable? Is it reasonable to defy the document to which each of these people has sworn an oath to defend? Is it reasonable to simply make up rules to suit the moment regardless of precedent or the rule of law?

Public trust in our elected leaders in Washington is at an all-time low. A stunt like this would only drive that confidence - meager as it is - completely into the toilet.

- - -

I still think my solution to the problem of D.C. citizens not having voting rights to be the best one. Except for the several hundred acres of land on which government offices sit, simply hand the District over to the state of Maryland and apportion current representation in the House accordingly.

A look at the map will explain why it makes sense:

It will never fly, of course. It makes too much sense for the nitwits in Washington to comprehend.

From Seemingly Intelligent Human Beings

World Net Daily has a photo up showing a "Religion" section of a Dallas Borders bookstore.

WND contacted Borders corporate office and was told that the offerings and the sign placement had nothing to do with each other given some bullshit reason why we aren't seeing what we're seeing.

I just hope the true-believers there know something the rest of us don't. We could use a few miracles right now from the Magic Man.

* Click on the image to enlarge it.