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

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

A Tale Of Two Bouchers

It looks like a major publication picked up on my point from yesterday.  That being that Rust Belt Democrats may have reason to worry about their votes in favor of "climate" legislation coming back to bite them, but one local Southwest Virginia congressman has much more to fear.

Politico picks up on the theme:
Dems feeling burned on climate
By Darren Samuelsohn

Rep. Rick Boucher played a pivotal role last year in getting climate change legislation through the House.

Working with liberal Democrats from both coasts, Boucher demanded several key concessions for coal — the lifeblood of his Southwestern Virginia district — that helped lay the groundwork for the bill’s passage in committee and later on the floor.

Fast-forward more than a year, and Boucher is once again focused on climate change, though this time, it’s in defending his work as he goes before a skeptical and anti-incumbent electorate.

“Given the choice we had, it was better to do it the way I attempted to get it done,” Boucher said. “It’s right. It’s defensible. And I think, in the end, that’s going to be politically acceptable.” [link]
"It's defensible."  He says now.  Because he finds himself having desperately to do just that.  But less than  a year ago he wasn't defending it at all.  He was attacking it and running from it at the same time.  The Kingsport Times News, August 29, 2009:

"U.S. Rep. Rick Boucher voted for cap-and-trade legislation but said he doesn’t endorse the House-passed version of the bill."

That's right.  Boucher opposes that which he voted in favor of.

What?!

The Times News:
“I voted for it because I had to do that to be part of the process and to make the changes that have been made.

Boucher added the easy thing for him to do with the cap-and-trade bill would have been to just vote no.  “And I could have done that,” he said. “But that would have been a cowardly thing to do, and it would not have served well the interests of the district I represent with its large coal industry and the fact that so much of the electricity we consume is coal-generated. ... I would have been out of the debate.”
In other words, he voted for a bill that he opposed because the legislation was going to pass anyway and he would have been taken out of the debate had he simply voted no.  So he voted YES.  Ending debate.

In reality, though, the debate wouldn't die.  But his legislation did.  Because the debate that he gave up on turned decidedly against the economy-killing cap-and-trade bill.   That debate - with our side standing firm and shouting A RESOUNDING HELL NO! - as administered by those of us with no power and far less influence maintained throughout, was, in the end won.  Cap-and-trade was killed and buried.  Without any help from the man we send to Washington to engage in that debate and protect our interests.

Boucher said it would have been "cowardly" to vote no on the Democrats' "climate" bill.  But his constituents knew better and fought, fought hard, relinquishing no ground to his buddies in Congress.  We prevailed.  With Boucher nowhere to be seen.

Who's the coward?

So now we're entertained with the notion that Rick Boucher's actions are "defensible." 

Have at it, dude.  Defend the indefensible.

Anyone Can Type. Anyone Can Ramble.

But not just anyone can be a Virginia Tech professor of English and find her rambling, incoherent nonsense published in Southwest Virginia's newspaper of renown.

See "Our Lives Need Flowers" in this morning's Roanoke Times.

Me?  I read it and realized our lives may need more flowers but a whole lot fewer fruitcakes.

* For more on this clown, a blast from the past.

This Would Be Me

I had routine blood work done not long ago and was startled when I was told I had a problem.  This:

What Do You Lack? Probably Vitamin D
By Jane E. Brody, New York Times

Vitamin D promises to be the most talked-about and written-about supplement of the decade. While studies continue to refine optimal blood levels and recommended dietary amounts, the fact remains that a huge part of the population — from robust newborns to the frail elderly, and many others in between — are deficient in this essential nutrient.

If the findings of existing clinical trials hold up in future research, the potential consequences of this deficiency are likely to go far beyond inadequate bone development and excessive bone loss that can result in falls and fractures. Every tissue in the body, including the brain, heart, muscles and immune system, has receptors for vitamin D, meaning that this nutrient is needed at proper levels for these tissues to function well.

Studies indicate that the effects of a vitamin D deficiency include an elevated risk of developing (and dying from) cancers of the colon, breast and prostate; high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease; osteoarthritis; and immune-system abnormalities that can result in infections and autoimmune disorders like multiple sclerosis, Type 1 diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis. [link]
Test results showed that I was seriously deficient in vitamin D.  So now I'm consuming a whole lot of these.

Though doctors tell me I'm not getting enough sun, I blame it on a lack of booze in my life.

So I'm committed to consuming a whole lot of this too.

The effort may have no measurable effect on my vitamin D levels, but I'll not be worrying about the problem at that point either.

Is Photography Art?

I have my doubts.

A story in the news only bolsters my skepticism.  See "Alleged Adams negatives, bought at garage sale, in dispute" in today's Washington Post.  Briefly, it's about some guy in California who bought a bunch of photographic negatives at a garage sale for 45 bucks that may be worth $200 million if they prove to be authentic Ansel Adams photos.

Problem is, nobody knows for sure.

The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust and the Ansel Adams Gallery say they're simply good photos but not Adams photos.  A host of experts apparently disagree.

Who's right?  Anyone's guess.  They're photos.  "Artwork" that required a quality camera and a steady finger.  And nothing more.

So these photos, depending on who's finger depressed the button, may be worth 75¢ or they may be worth $200,000,000.

That's "art" for you.

Here's Why The Charge 'Racist!' Is Flying

With the ascension of Barack Obama we were to enter a new age of post-racialism.  We were to be beyond race.

What that meant to those on the Left is we were to do a whole lot more apologizing for past transgressions - slavery! -  that no one alive today perpetrated nor became victim to.  A whole lot more apologizing.

In reality, it wasn't to be a "post-racialist" America we were moving into but a post-leave-us-alone America.  Grovel was to be the order of the day.

And calls went forth for "dialogue."  Attorney General Eric Holder:

“Though this nation has proudly thought of itself as an ethnic melting pot, in things racial we have always been and I believe continue to be, in too many ways, essentially a nation of cowards.”

They wanted dialogue.

With us "cowards."

And are they ever getting it.

Trouble is, it's coming in the form of push back.  Instead of apologizing, as was the script, Americans are shouting: We demand a colorblind society.  We are not racists.  We refuse to recognize skin color as a condition of employment or advancement.  And we will not apologize for something unknown people from long ago did to other unknown people from long ago, none of whom we have or had anything to do with.  And with all the problems that exist in this country, why in God's name are we even talking about such foolishness?

Well, this isn't how it was supposed to be.

So the cry Racist! went up.

Fox News is racist. Republicans are racist. Tea Party goers are racist. Your mama is a racist. Your dog. Your hamster. Your 401k.

Dialogue.

It was all so perfect on Inauguration Day, 2009. The storyline was set to go to print. We would all be "good white folks" and follow the script handed to us.

It didn't turn out as planned.

Shucks.

We've moved beyond race, fellas. Get over it.

Or don't. We don't give a damn anymore and we are up to our eyeballs in real problems to deal with.

'Waist Deep In The Big Muddy'

Maybe this is what James Webb had in mind the other day when he called for an end to diversity programs.  Did we give government the authority to do this?
Gov't mandates diversity on Wall St.
By Carrie Budoff Brown, Politico

A little-noticed section of the Wall Street reform law grants the federal government broad new powers to compel financial firms to hire more women and minorities — an effort at promoting diversity that’s drawing fire from Republicans who say it could lead to de facto hiring quotas.

Deep inside the massive overhaul bill, Congress gives the federal government authority to terminate contracts with any financial firm that fails to ensure the “fair inclusion” of women and minorities, forcing every kind of company from a Wall Street giant to a mom-and-pop law office to account for the composition of its work force.

Employment law experts say the language goes further than any previous attempt by the U.S. government to promote diversity in the financial sector — putting muscle behind federal efforts to help minority- and women-owned firms gain access to billions in federal contracts. [link]
What this means in the real world is more firms will put token black and female executives at the head of their companies so as to gain advantage with the government. It's silly but its effective in states where this sort of institutional racism and sexism is practiced today.

Beyond that, though, one wonders, futilely, where in the Constitution that was written to outline very specific obligations we were turning over to our central government does this sort of meddling appear?

Another instance of our government punishing us.  In this case because of the color of our skin.

How did we get to this point?

* Waist Deep in the Big Muddy

And Ne'er The Twain Shall Meet

Make no mistake, he worked hard to earn this:


The destruction of our way of life will have this effect.

Chart courtesy of RealClearPolitics.