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

Monday, April 06, 2009

They Do Have a Sense Of Humor

The editorial boys over at the Roanoke Times are joking, right? They wrote a 356 word denunciation (see "Huckabee's Bad Joke") of a comment that former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee made recently while on the campaign trail with Bob McDonnell. They were so unnerved by Huckabee's comment that they felt the need to use such phrases as "bad joke," "not funny," "voter suppression," "tasteless," "attempt to reinforce the urban-rural divide in Virginia," "divisive politics," and (my personal favorite) "slap at the most fundamental right of our democracy."

Good Lord. what was it that Huckabee said that prompted such a strident condemnation?

"He jokingly urged Republicans to let the air out of Democrats' tires and do whatever it takes to keep them from turning up at the voting booth in November."

The Republic is under assault. The Earth trembles. Be very, very afraid. Huckabee - we'll call him Domestic Terrorist Huckabee henceforth - calls for fellow terrorists to kill maim slaughter murder burn pillage rape lynch let the air out of Democrats' tires.

Gosh.

I 'll bet their editorial denouncing this hate-inspired act was thundering.

They did editorialize on the subject of Sarah Palin hatred, right?

Bush hatred then?

Cheney hatred?

Rumsfeld hatred?

Newt hatred?

Uh, appears not. Only letting air out of tires rises to the occasion ....

I Get So Confused

They bring these snake oil salesmen to town - at great expense - and are handed nothing but drivel. I continue to marvel at the stupidity of people who are willing to flush hard-earned tax dollars down the toilet.

Let's go to Roanoke:
Boosting the region's prosperity, profile
By Duncan Adams, Roanoke Times

Local skeptics could choose to feast on this freshly stocked buffet of hope.

They could say that at least a few of these newly hatched strategies to boost the region's prosperity and national profile have been tossed about before -- stretching back more than a decade to the work of the New Century Council and even further -- but never achieved.

Yet many of the initiatives described Tuesday were new. For example, the ultimate goal of one would be having a carbon neutral region by 2030. Another, designed to build tolerance among disparate groups, would encourage frank discussion about thorny topics such as race, sexual preference and other hot potato issues.

In fact, optimism seemed to reign during a public presentation in downtown Roanoke that followed a two-day workshop run by the Creative Class Group, an outfit spawned by economic development guru Richard Florida.

In essence, [the plan suggests] that cities must attract and accept artists and other bohemian types, ethnic minorities and gays because evidence of such tolerance and diversity attracts smart young people who will launch fast-growing companies or work for companies seeking a good quality of life. [link]

I go back to the headline to make sure I didn't skip something:

"Boosting the region's prosperity, profile."

So Southwest Virginia will prosper if we find us some gay guys and a few Mexicans and pay them to live in Roanoke? Oh, and we'll have to find us a handful of detached, 60's era dope-smoking, lice-infested "bohemian types." And - voila! - job-seekers will follow.

What?

At the risk of my point of view putting me in that "skeptical" column, here's my response:

Horse shit.

No, I'm not skeptical. I'm way beyond skeptical.

I could have saved these fools a bundle ($50,000?) with the following insights:

(1) "Cities" don't "attract" employment opportunities.

(2) The presence of "artists and other bohemian types, ethnic minorities and gays" does nothing to attract employment opportunities. Detroit has had plenty of all four for decades. Make the argument.

(3) Pay close attention (I can't believe I'm not charging these geniuses an arm and a leg for this advice): Employers bring employment opportunities.

Which takes us to (4).

(4) Employment opportunities attract "smart young people." And stupid old people too!

(5) To those politicians who want to grow the economy (rather than waste funds on goofy projects like this): Quit the silly workshops and work to create conditions such that employers can prosper here in Southwest Virginia. How? By reducing taxes and regulation. By providing quality education to our youth.

I wonder if anyone at this workshop raised his hand and made the point: "Sir, we have lots of home-grown 'smart young people' who graduate from high school and from Virginia Tech who immediately leave the area to find artists and other bohemian types, ethnic minorities and gays gainful work. They're not leaving to find bohemia."

I'll hand it to reporter Duncan Adams for balancing the article with this ray of sunshine:

Steven Malanga, a senior editor for City Journal, has frequently criticized Florida's theories. In an e-mail Thursday, Malanga referenced research conducted by Enrico Moretti, an economist at the University of California Berkeley. Malanga wrote, "This research suggests that educated types don't go to certain cities because of the amenities but because that's where the jobs are."

Job markets evolve first and they then lure college graduates, he observed

"The research suggests, as many have said in criticizing Florida, that he's offering a superficial explanation for why some cities thrive -- that's probably why he's so popular with politicians -- which ignores the deeper reality that is harder to pinpoint."

Job-seekers go where jobs are to be found.

That'll be fifty thousand bucks, made payable to The From On High Organization.

Thoughts To Ponder

Mark Steyn, writing in the Washington Times:

Well, we all hate "the rich," don't we? Last week, David Paterson, the governor of New York, said that if he had known his latest tax increase would persuade Rush Limbaugh to sell his Manhattan apartment and leave the city, he would have raised taxes earlier. Ha-ha. Very funny. In New York City, as Mayor Michael Bloomberg has pointed out, the wealthiest 1 percent contribute 50 percent of municipal revenue. How tiny a number of people does Mr. Paterson have to drive out before it causes significant shortfalls in the public coffers?

On the other hand, the rich can only be driven out if they've got somewhere to be driven to. At the ludicrous Group of 20 summit in London last week, the official communique crowed over a "clampdown" on tax havens - those British colonies in the Caribbean and a few other offshore pinpricks in the map. "The era of banking secrecy is over," the G-20 proclaimed.

Does anyone seriously think a Swiss bank account or a post-office box in the Turks and Caicos is responsible for the global meltdown?

No, but the world's governments have decided to focus on irrelevant scapegoats.
"The G-20 Doesn't Offer Plenty," April 6, 2009

Why Bush Would Sometimes 'Go It Alone'

The alternative was to not go it at all:
U.N. Security Council fails to agree on North Korea reaction
By Paul Richter and Geraldine Baum, LA Times

"North Korea broke the rules once again by testing a rocket that could be used for long-range missiles," said Obama, who was awakened Sunday with word of the launch.

Obama, who is visiting Prague, Czech Republic, said the move threatened countries "near and far" and underscored "the need for action not just this afternoon at the U.N. Security Council but in our determination to prevent the spread of these weapons."

After three hours of talks Sunday afternoon, the Security Council issued a brief statement saying members would spend the next couple of days discussing how to respond to the North Korean launch. But the 15 members could not agree on wording to characterize their joint statement. [link]
"It's critical that we act now!"

"Nahhhhh."

These people to whom Obama now defers are absolutely hopeless.

Now what, genius?