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

Wednesday, April 08, 2009


The Roanoke Times:
The cost of war

It was a somber, silent ceremony, a dignified assemblage to honor a soldier killed in action in Afghanistan as his remains were returned to American soil.

Only one thing made this different than ceremonies that have honored thousands of other fallen soldiers in the nearly eight years of war in Afghanistan and six years of war in Iraq: This time, the media were allowed to cover the return. [link]

No. There are two things that are different. One is cited above. The other, more important, is that the news media's best buddy - Barack Obama - is now in power and the members of that media can be expected to act dutifully respectful of our war dead now that their favorite guy is ordering them into battle and ordering them to their deaths.

During Bush's reign, we could expect this sort of thing on a regular basis. Our honored dead proved to be nothing more than useful pawns in the hands of those who hated Bush and wanted his war to end. And the president rightly refused to give them the noose with which to hang him.

But now it's Obama's war. And the media will show more maturity. It's a good war now. They'll be respectful. As they should have been all along.

That's why I support the decision to allow photographs to be taken of those coffins of brave soldiers killed in battle being returned home to their final resting place.

Anyone who has seen the heartrending and devastatingly powerful movie "Taking Chance," will understand.* If only we could count on the media to consistently do the same.

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* If you don't subscribe to HBO, get a copy somewhere. "Taking Chance" is one of the best movies I've ever seen. And it's essentially a documentary.

As I Foretold

It was from a good deal of experience that I made fun of a New York Times headline yesterday that tried desperately to make us believe that Americans - as we're struggling in the depths of economic despair - are actually all bubbly and enthusiastic, now that Obama has become president.

See "What's Changed, I Wonder?" which referenced the Times's "Outlook on Economy Is Brightening, Poll Finds."

I poked fun at the headline because the Times used as a point of reference for its optimism a poll conducted by ... the New York Times. Which was convenient, to say the least.

Now, as it turns out, we get the news that the Times poll was indeed a gross manipulation.

Ed Morrissey:
NYT/CBS poll has its thumbs on the scale … again

The only consistent quality about the New York Times/CBS polling is its ridiculous sampling on party identification. Once again, the NYT/CBS poll tries to paint Democrats as unassailably popular and Republicans as losing ground, and once again they have to wildly oversample Democrats to make the argument.

It’s not unusual for the Gray Lady to cook the numbers, either, to make sure their poll shows that support. This is the breakout in their demographics on page 23:

  • Democrats - 39%
  • Republicans - 23%
  • Independents - 30%
Unfortunately, they’re not the only news agencies using ridiculous sampling to bolster their contentions of wild popularity for Barack Obama. Newsweek used a 19-point gap in its latest polling. CNN thus far has neglected to publish the internals of its poll. It’s just another round of dishonesty from the media.

Rasmussen has Obama’s polling at a more rational 58%, but then again, they don’t have an investment in Obama, Inc, as the media does.

The lesson? None of these rags (or CNN) can be trusted.

How Can That Be?

The cloistered monks at the New York Times seem startled that the world's oil companies aren't investing in that "green" energy technology that Democrats are all orgasmic about. Get this:
Oil Companies Loath to Follow Obama’s Green Lead
By Jad Maouwad

The Obama administration wants to reduce oil consumption, increase renewable energy supplies and cut carbon dioxide emissions in the most ambitious transformation of energy policy in a generation.

But the world’s oil giants are not convinced that it will work. Even as Washington goes into a frenzy over energy, many of the oil companies are staying on the sidelines, balking at investing in new technologies favored by the president, or even straying from commitments they had already made.

Royal Dutch Shell said last month that it would freeze its research and investments in wind, solar and hydrogen power, and focus its alternative energy efforts on biofuels. The company had already sold much of its solar business and pulled out of a project last year to build the largest offshore wind farm, near London.

BP, a company that has spent nine years saying it was moving “beyond petroleum,” has been getting back to petroleum since 2007, paring back its renewable program. And American oil companies, which all along have been more skeptical of alternative energy than their European counterparts, are studiously ignoring the new messages coming from Washington. [link]
How can that be, you ask?

Two reasons:

1) This is going to seem harsh what with everyone now being enthralled by all the talk about alternative energies like wind and solar, but they aren't - and won't be - viable on a large scale. Ever. They have a small foothold today only because of massive subsidies that the governments around the world (desperately) pour into them to (desperately) prop them up. Even with Obama's speeches and billions in investment over the coming years, it's estimated that "alternative energy sources" will make up only 14% of total generation by 2030. And hydropower will be more than half of that!

2) This is going to seem harsh what with everyone now hating big corporations and capitalism, but there's no money to be made in alternative energy. Big Oil is staying away from wind power because there are only massive losses to be had from any investments that might be made.

While the government can spend money it doesn't have on such foolishness, corporations can't. Ask Rick Wagoner at General Motors (oops, you can't; Obama fired him for spending money he didn't have).

So be down on the oil companies if you wish. To me, this news means there are smart people running them. And that's a good thing. We've got enough stupid people running too many things around us these days.

2a) Expect Obama to take over the oil companies next. The potential to lose mountains of money is not an acceptable excuse.

I Wonder Who They'll Sell Them To

While Congress and Detroit (what a duo that) are burning the midnight oil redesigning the automobile for the Green Generation, the "Green Generation" is still voting with its greenbacks for MUSCLE.

The top selling vehicles of 2008?

The Ford F-Series pick-up and the Chevy Silverado pick-up.

And where did those gay little hybrid and electric cars rank in popularity among the top ten?

They didn't.

You can lead a horse to water but ...

I Think She's On To Something

Camille Paglia on the conservative lock on talk radio:
The most rewarding aspect of talk radio for me is the callers, whose voices are heard nowhere else in the culture -- the feisty, super-organized home-schooling moms, the gruffly stoical transcontinental truckers, and the fiercely independent and self-reliant small-business owners, outraged by Washington's tilt toward bailing out corrupt, top-heavy corporations.

However, the popularity of conservative radio shows is a round-the-clock phenomenon. There are flamboyant evening hosts as well as night replays of the major daytime shows, extending well past midnight to dawn. Clearly, conservative hosts have an instinctive rapport with AM radio, which I have been arguing for years is a populist medium (an idea that finally seems to have taken wing in its invocation by other commentators).

Salon reader Cecil W. Powell writes: "The failure of talkers on liberal radio is in large part due to an absolute inability to poke fun at themselves." How true! Liberal hosts like to snap and snip and chortle snidely, but they are weighed down by a complacent superiority complex, a paralyzing sanctimony. They mistake irony for wit. The conservative hosts love to rant and stomp and bring down the house. They're doing breakneck vaudeville while liberal hosts are primly stirring their non-caffeine green tea.

"Bow-ow-ow: Obama's painful missteps," Salon.com, April 8, 2009

Leftists So Want To Be Led

Knowing what Fidel Castro has done to his island nation over the last half century, and to his people, how can these Americans be so ignorant?
CBC members praise Castro
By Alex Isenstadt,

Key members of the Congressional Black Caucus are calling for an end to U.S. prohibition on travel to Cuba, just hours after a meeting with former Cuban president Fidel Castro in Havana.

“The fifty-year embargo just hasn’t worked,” CBC Chairwoman Barbara Lee (D-Ca.) told reporters this evening at a Capitol press conference after returning from a congressional delegation visit to Cuba.

Lee and others heaped praise on Castro, calling him warm and receptive during their discussion. But the lawmakers disputed Castro's later statement that members of the congressional delegation said American society is still racist.

"It was quite a moment to behold," Lee said, recalling her moments with Castro.

“It was almost like listening to an old friend,” said Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Il.), adding that he found Castro’s home to be modest and Castro’s wife to be particularly hospitable.

Rep. Laura Richardson (D-Ca.) said Castro was receptive to President Obama’s message of turning the page in American foreign policy.

"He listened. He said the exact same thing" about turning the page "as President Obama said," said Richardson. [link]
Castro could have hauled a political prisoner in chains before this screwy bunch, shot him in the back of the head, watched him quickly bleed to death, and these twits would still sing their fawning praises.

I somehow think these soul mates deserve one another.

Can't Win For Losing

There was a lot of buzz yesterday about GM's new transportation offering (I'm inclined to call it a car, but I'd be stretching it), the Puma (which stands for Personal Urban Mobility and Accessibility). The Obama Auto Company is apparently staking its future on what one critic described as "a souped-up wheelchair."

Take a look:

Well, no sooner does GM roll the contraption out with great fanfare at a time to coincide with the upcoming New York auto show, than someone has already given it a moniker, in honor of GM's new chairman, Barack Obama:

The Depressionmobile

Gm is just not going to get any breaks.

My favorite line: "300 lbs., max speed of 35 mph, capable of running for 35 miles on a single charge to its lithium-ion battery, which makes it ideal for men with short commutes who plan on never attracting a woman again."

Photo courtesy of the Huffington Post.