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

Friday, July 31, 2009

Uh, Rick?

In his sniveling attempt at pleading for understanding the other day (see "Boucher's Running Scared") Congressman Rick Boucher (D-Sierra Club) forgot to mention another reason that led him to side with the environmental left over his constituents in the coalfields of Southwest Virginia. M-O-N-E-Y:
Stream of New Lobbying Money Helped Climate Bill Flow Through House
Christa Marshall, writing in the New York Times

Major global-warming legislation that squeaked past the finish line in the House last month attracted millions of dollars in new lobbying money.

The fresh cash came from a combination of new groups and existing companies ramping up their payments to hired advocates in the second quarter of 2009. Entities hiring climate lobbyists for the first time shelled out more than $1.5 million overall from April to June and included a new natural-gas coalition and an arm of former Vice President Al Gore's nonprofit empire.

Corporations with a long-term presence in the nation's capital also opened their coffers specifically to push lawmakers on the cap-and-trade bill sponsored by Reps. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) and Edward Markey (D-Mass.), which passed the House 219-212 last month. For example, Energy Future Holdings, a Texas-based firm, hired the Madison Group to push lawmakers on the bill and paid the firm's lobbyists $80,000.

At the same time, sectors with a stake in the measure, such as oil and gas and coal, upped their spending this spring by millions of dollars from the same period last year, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. [link]
M-O-N-E-Y.

Let's bring it down to a level we can all understand:

· Boucher's climate tax bill (HR 2454), among other things, provides for protection for local electric distribution companies (LDC's) in the way of "allowances" starting in 2016. Sizable allowances.

· Thomas F. Farrell II, President and CEO of Dominion Resources (Dominion Power), has come out in favor of Boucher's bill.

· Dominion Resources - Surprise! - is an LDC.

· Dominion Power will be a major beneficiary of Boucher's largesse.

· By all accounts, Boucher's bill is going to raise utility rates substantially.

· Dominion Power doesn't pay for rate increases. You do.

· Since electric rate increases resulting from Boucher's bill come out of your wallet, Boucher's largesse comes out of your wallet. What a guy!

· Guess what organization happens to be Boucher's leading 2010 campaign contributor so far this year?

Dominion Resources.

· It all becomes clear.

M-O-N-E-Y.

The Pressing Issues Of Our Day

Staggering recession.

Looming inflation.

The scourge of terrorism.

Impending flu pandemic.

Illegal immigration.

Global warming or cooling or ... (what's today's weather going to be?)

Light pollution.

What?

Light pollution.

Woody Allen movies.

Brussels sprouts.

French women with smelly, hairy armpits.

Maxine Waters.

Pee on the toilet seat.

Whopper Of The Day

From the Bristol Herald Courier editorial board:
While Barack Obama was talking to Kroger employees Wednesday afternoon, Democrats reached a needed health care reform breakthrough that meets the president’s chief goals – extending coverage to about 95 percent of Americans without increasing federal deficits. [my emphasis]
Beyond laughable.

The truth.

This Is Hilarious

New York Times columnist Paul Krugman is a big believer in nationalized health care. So when he asked during a recent panel discussion that dealt with ObamaCare how many people in the audience were Canadian and then how many of those who were Canadian thought their health care system was terrible, a fellow panelist muttered, "Almost all of the same hands are going up."

The video doesn't lie:


Krugman's response: "Bad move on my part."

In so many ways, pal.

Hat tip to Right Wing News.

Something That Should Concern Us All

I read recently an article written by a prominent American economist that argued the point that the Chinese holding so much American debt was nothing to be concerned about and that we can feel reassured by the fact that they'll continue buying U.S. debt in the future because there was nowhere else on earth where they'd get any decent financial return on their investments.

My reaction? How shortsighted can this guy be?

Apparently the Chinese agree with me:
Weak Treasury Auctions Raise Worries About US Debt Burden
By Reuters

The U.S. Treasury sold $39 billion in five-year debt Wednesday in an auction that drew poor demand, raising worries over the cost of financing the government's burgeoning budget deficit.

It was the second lackluster showing in as many days, convincing analysts that the stellar results of debt auctions just a few weeks ago were a fluke and that Thursday's $28 billion seven-year offering could suffer a similar fate.

"It was just a horrendous result," said William O'Donnell, head of U.S. Treasury strategy at RBS Securities in Greenwich, Connecticut. [link]
With regard to the five-year notes, it all comes down to this: What will the dollar be worth in five years? If inflation kicks in here in the USA, as the Chinese have apparently decided it will because of Obama's massive spending initiatives, the answer is not a whole lot.

Thus, they're taking their investments elsewhere. Why buy increasingly worthless paper?

This is not a good thing.

I wonder how our gifted leader is going to hope&change his way out of this one.

Headline Of The Day

Suppose they pay people to write this stuff?

Health Care Affects Everyone

I want that gig.

Obama's Plan Is Working!

Stimulus
Noun: stimulus ˈstim-yə-ləs
1. Something causing or regarded as causing a response.
2. An agent, action, or condition that elicits or accelerates a physiological or psychological activity or response.
3. Something that incites or rouses to action; an incentive

- - -

Regarding Obama's $780,000,000,000 effort to rouse and accelerate the economic recovery:

May-June joblessness up in 90 pct of metro areas

- - -

Antonyms: deterrent, discouragement, hindrance, tranquilizer

It Becomes Clear

For the life of me I couldn't figure out how in the world AARP could have come out in favor of ObamaCare. After all, it's AARP's membership that has a great big bullseye painted on its back if Obama's plan to ration care passes Congress. Everyone agrees: It's the elderly who are going to suffer most.

Then I read Mark Tapscott's article in the Washington Examiner and it all became clear. AARP deosn't represent old people. It represents Washington D.C. Big government. Liberals.

Tapscott:
Obamacare could kill AARP

Marketing operations don't get any slicker than the one behind AARP. Their invitation to join arrived in my mail box even before I turned 50. I joined for one year, but never renewed because I knew the truth about this famous group.

That truth is this: Millions join AARP and in return receive a host of useful services and resources. But their money and influence are hijacked to support causes that are absolutely inimical to their best interests.

The hijacking is the work of AARP's Washington staff, which is an integral part of the tireless liberal lobbying machine that runs 24/7 in the nation's capital pushing to protect and expand current government entitlements and to create costly new ones.

[S]tick around D.C. for any length of time during the past three decades and you likely figured out that AARP's national office was and is today a key player on the side of Big Government, higher taxes and more bureaucracy.

But AARP's leadership has outsmarted itself by going all out to aid President Obama, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in their drive to nationalize America's health care system. [link]
Read the whole thing. AARP's 35 million members have reason to be frightened by Obama's health care plan. Yet AARP is blissfully happy with it.

There's something seriously wrong with that.

Race Problems Solved!

At least for 15 minutes.

Obama brought black and white together yesterday and made history.

All will be well now.

I hear Al Sharpton and David Duke have been summoned to the White House for brewskies next.

I feel a kumbaya moment coming on.

If only Michael Jackson were still around to see this day.

"We are the world ..."

- - -

* I'm kinda surprised that they allowed Joe Biden to attend. I can hear him now, as he wipes the Stroh's off his crotch:

"You boys hear the one about the rabbi, the negro, and the 14-year-old virgin?
"

Leavin' 'Em In The Dust

Here's the latest from Pollster.com on the McDonnell/Deeds race for governor:

McDonnell: 53.5%
Deeds: 40.2%

And the trend is going red - big time:

Click on the image to enlarge it.
Graph courtesy of Pollster.com.
Hat tip to Isophorone.

Who Is Jeanette Rishell?

And why does she think she might become a delegate to the Virginia House?

When I read of her (partially successful) attempts to have an opposition video suppressed by YouTube, I couldn't help but wonder if she has any idea what kind of firestorm she would create.

The story - and video - come from Greg at Black Velvet Bruce Li:
Jeanette Rishell Tries To Silence Critics

This is a new one. What political campaign has ever tried to remove videos from YouTube on the basis that the video included some of their own campaign content and argued that the criticism was a violation of their copyright? Well, Jeanette Rishell sets a new standard for utter incompetence today, which is arguably a really difficult thing for her hapless campaign to do. I must really be getting to them for Rishell’s campaign to start acting this stupid.

Here’s what showed up in my inbox this afternoon:

"This is to notify you that we have removed or disabled access to the following material as a result of a third-party notification by Friends of Jeanette Rishell claiming that this material is infringing:

Jeanette Rishell and Used Condom Girl: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xrlgPdg9910

Please Note: Repeat incidents of copyright infringement will result in the deletion of your account and all videos uploaded to that account. In order to prevent this from happening, please delete any videos to which you do not own the rights, and refrain from uploading additional videos that infringe on the copyrights of others. For more information about YouTube’s copyright policy, please read the Copyright Tips guide.

If you elect to send us a counter notice, please go to our ..."
That came to Greg via email from YouTube, Inc.

His video has been blocked by a candidate for public office.

How bright is that? Now the videos in question will be all over the blogosphere* with mocking snark accompanying. They'll get a hundred times the play than had this Rishell woman just ignored them. As any experienced politician would have.

I'll get a copy of Greg's video(s) (he now has another) up and you can view them. They're very professionally done. And they're hard-hitting, as Greg's approach to politics in northern Virginia always is.

Here's to the First Amendment!

* The video in question can be viewed here.

- - -

Update: Greg has followed up his weblog post with a press release:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

JEANETTE RISHELL CAMPAIGN SEEKS TO SQUASH POLITICAL SPEECH

July 30th, 2009

Manassas, Virginia: The campaign of Jeanette Rishell, a candidate running for the 50th District House of Delegates in Virginia has filed a copyright infringement claim with YouTube regarding a video created by local blogger Greg Letiecq on July 29th. The video criticizes her selection of a campaign manager and uses short clips from her own campaign videos to demonstrate the hypocrisy of claiming to support family values, but hiring someone to represent her campaign who posted pictures of used condoms on her public Facebook page, written articles advocating homosexual relationships, and had supported including hard-core pornography videos in the collection of the library at Rochester University.

“YouTube maintains a policy of disabling video content after receiving any complaints regarding copyright infringement, so the videos are currently unavailable on YouTube” said Letiecq, the blogger who operates the Black Velvet Bruce Li blog. “It is unprecedented for a political campaign to allege copyright infringement when someone uses short clips of their campaign videos, and this is a clear effort to stifle criticism of her bad judgment by misusing the law.”

Copyright law provides limited use of the material of others under the “fair use doctrine,” particularly when such use is essential for parody, criticism or educational purposes and is limited to the minimum portion of the original work necessary. Recently, a similar “fair use” issue involving a video by the National Organization for Marriage and contested by Perez Hilton was resolved by YouTube in favor of the “fair use” of Perez Hilton's statements. Using short clips of a video for permitted purposes, even without authorization, is permissible "fair use" under Title 17 Section 107 of the United States Code.

Ben Tribbett, the blogger behind “Not Larry Sabato” called the Rishell campaign's actions “total insanity” in a post late on July 29th he decided to make the video available for download from his own servers so they could evaluate the claims of the Rishell campaign themselves. The attempt to misuse copyright law in an effort to stifle free political speech has failed because of a bipartisan effort by Virginia bloggers to stand up for free political speech.
Total insanity, indeed.