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

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Global Warming Nonsense

Time magazine/Daily Beast contributor Sharon Begley (who we are told is the science columnist and science editor of Newsweek magazine) looked out the window, saw weather, and derives from her observations the following assertion:

"Even those who deny the existence of global climate change are having trouble dismissing the evidence of the last year."

Bullshit.

She of course refers to all those tornadoes that have been ripping through the Midwest in recent weeks. And to unprecedented "wetness" in the same area, along with droughts in Texas and China, floods in Australia and Pakistan (which has suffered horrific floods since forever), and heat in Russia.

Odd she didn't include record cold in Minnesota and in that same Australia just months ago. That would fit her pattern of extremes, wouldn't it?

Oddly, no. Cold weather doesn't fit the "climate change" scenario.

But it, along with those droughts and heatwaves and tornadoes and hurricanes (where are the major hurricanes her kind were predicting a few short years ago?) and ... wetness, do fit another scenario.

It's called weather.

The same weather that the planet has been experiencing, in varying degrees, since time immemorial.

"Even those who deny the existence of global climate change are having trouble dismissing the evidence of the last year."

If this twit who claims to be a scientist knew the first thing about CLIMATE (i.e., the weather in some location averaged over some long period of time), she wouldn't even be making such a foolish statement.

Look! A tornado! The climate changed!

For the love of God.

Tick Tock Tick Tock

While we here in the U.S. worry that the dismal jobless numbers in this country are permanent, and as we watch manufacturer after manufacturer close its doors and leave, and as Barack Obama moves to accelerate their departure and add to our gloom by proposing confiscatory taxes and evermore burdensome regulation, just to the north of us times are good:
Canada's GDP Expands 3.9%
By Nirmala Menon, Wall Street Journal

Ottawa—Canada's economy expanded at a 3.9% annualized pace in January through March, the fastest clip in a year and more than double the rate in the U.S., as businesses replenished inventories and boosted investment spending and exports rose while consumer and government spending stalled, Statistics Canada said Monday.

Gross domestic product growth was marginally below the consensus call of 4%, and also undershot the Bank of Canada's 4.2% forecast.

GDP growth accelerated from a downwardly revised 3.1% in the fourth quarter, which was originally reported at 3.3%. The economic performance was the reverse of the U.S. where growth decelerated to 1.8% in the first quarter from 3.1% previously. [link]
It's eye-opening to watch leading American economists tell us that we can solve our unemployment problem by having the government simply hire everyone who's unemployed and put them to work picking up litter and repairing pot holes, without telling us who's going to pay their paychecks (hint: it's a four-letter word that begins with r-i-c-h). 

At the same time they're howling for higher taxes to pay for those meaningless government make-work jobs (and myriad other things).

Welcome to the Welfare State.

While we go down that suicidal path, Canada has slashed a number of taxes, particularly on business, and, as a result, is prosperous beyond our wildest dreams.

They do what we once knew to do.

They succeed while we struggle to keep our heads above water.

And the disparity, as long as Obama and his ilk run things here in the land of tax-it-if-breathes, regulate-it-if-it-moves, will grow ever wider.

Monday, May 30, 2011

On This Memorial Day ...

... I can't help but wonder ...



... if we are even worthy of their sacrifice.

A Day To Honor Those Left Behind

To you our hearts go out:




May God bless and comfort you.

The Civil War Was About Slavery?

I'm still having difficulty believing we have a need to go over this ground again.  But some in this great land of ours think it so.

Here we go again.  See "The slavery issue's lingering relevance."

To quote the Roanoke Times op/ed piece:

"It is amazing, really, that there is still debate about what caused the American Civil War. Amazing, that is, from the viewpoint of the historical record."

Does the fact that a few cranks and crackpots hold out hope that the Civil War wasn't about the obvious mean they have to be debated?

Perhaps.

But let's get real.

It wasn't about anything else.

End of story.

* As to the part that "states' rights" played in the impetus for war, the author phrases it perfectly:

"The doctrine of states' rights, as espoused for decades by South Carolina's John C. Calhoun, was indeed invoked by the commissioners, not, however, as the cause of secession but rather as the constitutional justification for it. The cause, certainly in the minds of these commissioners, was the catastrophic threat both to slavery and to the white race posed by the election of Abraham Lincoln and the "Black Republicans."

As I've stated it before, less eloquently, slavery was the dynamite, "states' rights" was the fuse.  Three quarters of a million dead Americans later ...

Coal Has a Bright Future

As long as there are politicians who fear the unknown and act before they think, and make rash decisions accordingly, we don't have to worry that the coal industry will be "bankrupted" into oblivion.

See "Germany Wants Nuclear Exit by 2022 at Latest."

So what is to replace nuclear?

They haven't considered that yet but it'll soon dawn on them ...

Headline of the Day

One wonders where they get these people:

DNC chair: Republicans think illegal immigration should be illegal, or something

To which she would retort:

Democrats think illegal immigration should be legal.


Embarrassing.

Pretty In Black

My kind of president.

Sarah Palin does "Rolling Thunder."

And she actually makes all those old-farts-on-Harleys around her look ... sweeter.

Uh, well, no.  That's a stretch.

But this is certain: Sarah is the only person in the presidential race (?) who can make a Bell helmet look down-right fashionable.

Nice.

Weinergate Erupts

It doesn't appear to amount to much but it makes for a great weblog heading, and provides the first opportunity to use that ... word ... since Bill Clinton was president and Paula Jones was asked to describe the man's funny-looking (look it up) johnson.

See "WeinerGate: MSM Ignores Trifecta of Sex, Politics, and a Rising Political Star."

I think it's a stretch to call Anthony Weiner a "rising political star."  He is and will always be, to most people who have heard him speak in public, nothing more than ... a wiener.

- - -

From the ridiculous to ...

What we really need is someone who's seen Anthony Weiner in his underwear before.

Personally, I'm not sure I want to know who's ever seen this guy in his undies before.

When The Globe No Longer Warmed

This was inevitable, as data started pouring in over the last several years that refuted computer model calculation and "scientist" speculation. 

Nice theory.  Wrong planet.

Thus:
Kyoto deal loses four big nations
Sydney Morning Herald*

Russia, Japan and Canada told the G8 they would not join a second round of carbon cuts under the Kyoto Protocol at United Nations talks this year and the US reiterated it would remain outside the treaty, European diplomats have said.

The future of the Kyoto Protocol has become central to efforts to negotiate reductions of carbon emissions under the UN's Framework Convention on Climate Change, whose annual meeting will take place in Durban, South Africa, from November 28 to December 9.

Developed countries signed the Kyoto Protocol in 1997. They agreed to legally binding commitments on curbing greenhouse gas emissions blamed for global warming.

Those pledges expire at the end of next year. Developing countries say a second round is essential to secure global agreements.

But the leaders of Russian, Japan and Canada confirmed they would not join a new Kyoto agreement, the diplomats said. [link]
Why are they backing away from "saving the planet"?  Because the premise they've been pushing is proving, with each passing day, to be unsupportable.

They back away none too soon.  These people were on the verge of wrecking civilization in an effort to ... well, no one can really explain why they were doing what they were doing, since that same Kyoto Protocol was never intended to do much in the way of reducing global temperatures.  It was more of a feel-good proposition.  Or something.

Anyway, Kyoto is dead.  May it stay dead.

* A question: Why did I have to read this (which originally appeared in a French publication) in an Australian publication?  Do U.S. papers not want me to know the truth?

- - -

Texas Governor (and soon-to-annnounced presidential candidate?) Rick Perry:

"Virtually every day another scientist leaves the global warming bandwagon. ... But you won't read about that in the press because they have already invested in one side of the story. I'm not saying we shouldn't be good stewards of our environment. We should. I am just saying when politics hijack science, it quells true scientific debate and can have dire consequences for our future." (source)

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Bringing A Fallen Warrior Home

Brandon, Mississippi shows Americans how it should be done.

See "Fallen USMC Staff Sgt. Jason Rogers returns home to Brandon MS."



Paula watched this video and asked: Why don't the national news people consider this to be newsworthy?

Whatever the reason, it doesn't really matter.

We don't need them anymore.

We the People celebrate the lives of our fallen heroes regardless.

We grieve for their families.

We honor them for their sacrifices.

We will be forever indebted.

We make every day Memorial Day.

I Can See It Coming

Bob Dole. 

John McCain.

Mitt Romney.

They all just ooze "electability."

Or did.

As the case may be.

Two of the three being former electables. 

Electable until they proved to be totally unelectable.

Despite their making all the right moves.

Going to the right places, saying the right things.

As to the third?

The right move calls for him to go to Corn Crop Central, and say what they want to hear!

Romney in Iowa: "I Support the Subsidy of Ethanol"

For the love of God. Say it ain't so.  It's happening again.

Keep It In Perspective

I try to remember this when I see John McCain's daughter plastered on my TV screen - she's there for one reason.  To get under the skin of us conservatives.  Like Ann Coulter does to them.  That being understood, I can then deal with her inanity, just before I click to a different channel.

Here's Meghan in all her glory:

Sarah Palin’s Like Totally Ruining Meghan McCain’s Dating Life

She gets no dates.

Go figure.

Local Economy Continues Path To Extinction

In economic downturns past, companies laid workers off and tightened belts.  Then, when projections looked favorable, they'd hire those workers back and crank up production.

But not this time 'round.

Too many businesses are bypassing the layoff route and are closing their doors forever.

Here in Southwest Virignia that now includes the region's largest employer.

My God:
StarTek Closing in Collinsville, 631 Jobs Lost
By Sarah Bloom, Roanoke Times

Collinsville, VA - StarTek announced Monday their Collinsville facility will close, leaving 631 people without jobs.

StarTek says they have to close the facility because of "clients changing business requirements."

Company officials say the jobs will be eliminated by July 22.

"We will help employees with job placement services and also offer resume help," said Chad Carlson, COO of StarTek in a release Monday. "We will do what we can over the next few months to make sure their transition goes as smoothly as possible."

These job cuts affect the area of Virginia with the highest unemployment rate - the Martinsville/Henry County region. [link]
The jobs affected were mostly entry level positions.  But entry level beats the unemployment line any day.

Now the unemployment line is the only alternative available to all those poor souls.

So, hey, let's talk about bank bailouts, Moammar Ghaddafi, green energy, and Mexican immigrants some more.

So sad.  In so many ways.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

A Note Of Thanks

From one who has never taken up the sword, to those many brave men and women who have.  Especially to those who gave "the last full measure of devotion" in doing so:

Thank you so much.

Rosie O'Donnell Is An Idiot

It's as simple as this:

The cock crowed.
The Sun rose.
The cock therefore caused the Sun to rise.

Which takes us to Rosie O'Donnell, darling of the media left and really deep thinker. This comes to us from Brian Maloney:
ROSIE O'DONNELL: It's hard to find a reason that is not environmentally centered, that [doesn't have] something to do with global warming or what the planet is going through. The amount of tornadoes...it's like three times the highest amount ever before, right? Something weird is happening with all of these natural catastrophes.

JANETTE BARBER [executive producer of Rosie's radio show]: It's global warming. People can say whatever they like. It's global warming.
Really?  That means then that there was no global warming last year or the year prior since the "amount" of tornadoes in 2009 and 2010 was way down from 2008.

What idiots.

You may recall, it was this same mindset that brought about all kinds of wild speculation relating to the number and ferocity of hurricanes (attributed to that same global warming) we could expect in the future right after we went through Hurricane Katrina. And that speculation ran rampant until subsequent years proved such predictions to be completely bogus.

Now it's tornadoes.

Next year it'll be sun spots.

Then warts on frogs.

This is sheer ignorance.

Mixed with stupidity.

Perhaps Rosie O'Donnell should do herself and her adoring fans a favor and go back to doing what she knows something about.  Which is ... uhhh ... hmmm.

It's High Noon

We cannot continue down this path for long:

See "America can be a superpower or a welfare state, but not both."

It's fair to say, the latter is winning.

We Deserve An Explanation

Memo to Tim Kaine: It ain't goin' away, pal:
Now that he’s running, Kaine can’t run from Soering decision
By Kerry Dougherty, The Virginian-Pilot

Sixteen months.

That’s how long former Gov. Tim Kaine has had to cook up an explanation for his attempt – days before he left office in 2010 – to send double-murderer Jens Soering back to Germany.

It was an astonishing act of gubernatorial nose-thumbing that Kaine reportedly refused to discuss until recently, when he decided to run for the U.S. Senate.

Yet, after all this time, the best excuse Kaine can muster is that he was trying to save Virginia taxpayers a few bucks.

“He is not a sympathetic character, that’s true,” Kaine told The Associated Press recently. “I would never grant him clemency.

“I did feel like Virginians have paid for his incarceration for a very long time – let the Germans pay to keep this guy.”

Danke schön, governor. But honestly, we don’t mind the cost of keeping animals like Soering behind bars. It’s the price we pay to live in a society with laws. Apparently Kaine’s compassion for taxpayers even extended beyond America’s borders. The AP reminds us that “Kaine secretly agreed to a plan that would have kept Soering behind bars for two years” in Germany.

Kaine has some serious explaining to do. Perhaps he should hire a new spin doctor before he makes a stab at it.

Ooops. “Stab” is a poor choice of words. After all, that’s what Soering did to his girlfriend’s parents in 1985.

For those who’ve forgotten, here’s an abbreviated account: In March of 1985, Nancy and Derek Haysom were butchered in their Bedford County home. After the murders, their daughter Elizabeth and her boyfriend, Soer­ing – who met as students at the University of Virginia – fled the country. The duo hopscotched around the globe until they were arrested for check fraud in London the next year.

Elizabeth returned to America, pleaded guilty to being an accessory to the murder of her parents and was sentenced to 90 years in prison. She has a mandatory release date in 2032, when she’ll be 68 years old.

The son of a German diplomat, Soering fought extradition. He was finally shipped to the States in 1990 after American authorities agreed that he would not face the death penalty.

Soering confessed to the near-decapitation of his girlfriend’s parents. Eventually he recanted and blamed Haysom. A jury found him guilty and sentenced him to two consecutive life sentences.

Soering’s story is familiar to those who know what goes on behind bars. Many convicts steadfastly insist that they’re innocent. Once their appeals are exhausted, they inevitably find Jesus and try to enlist the patronage of gullible religious leaders to lobby politicians to get them out of the big house. Catholic clergy took the bait in this case. Like our present governor, Kaine is a practicing Roman Catholic. Perhaps pressure from the clergy had something to do with Kaine’s inexplicable decision to show mercy to this murderer.

What Kaine didn’t count on was that his successor in Richmond and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder would work in concert to foil his plans. As soon as he took office, Bob McDonnell asked Holder to stop the transfer. Several months later, the attorney general did just that.

Earlier this week McDonnell refused to recommend parole for Soering, after a plea to do so from the convict. According to news reports, the governor said he remains convinced of Soering’s guilt.

Soering’s re-emergence in the headlines is bad news for Kaine, who no doubt would prefer to tiptoe away from his peculiar actions during his last week in office.

Heck, Soering may have done him a favor. Kaine now has an opportunity to clear the air with the election still 18 months away. [link]
Yeah.  Tell us why you let this murderer walk, Tim.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Oh, Yeah. It Has So Many Meanings.

Good grief:

CNN's Randi Kaye on Ed Schultz's Rant: 'There Are Mixed Interpretations' of the Term 'Slut'

What? 

Is there no intelligence requirement to get hired bu CNN?

Blind Devotion

That's the only explanation for this bit of idiocy:
LAT Columnist: Obama's Too Smart to Speak Clearly, or Something
By Lachlan Markay, NewsBusters

Liberals are quite fond of chalking up President Obama's shortcomings to his near-inhuman intelligence. His repeated failures to offer policies that are both popular and successful are routinely written off as failures in "messaging." Honestly presented, that translates roughly to "too smart for the rubes he governs."

But now Obama isn't just too smart for the country, he's apparently too smart for…himself! He is so intelligent, in fact, that he has developed a stutter. Sorry, an "intellectual stammer," as Los Angeles Times columnist Meghan Daum dubbed it. Our president's mind moves too fast for his tongue.

"It's not that Obama can't speak clearly. It's that he employs the intellectual stammer. Not to be confused with a stutter, which the president decidedly does not have, the intellectual stammer signals a brain that is moving so fast that the mouth can't keep up. The stammer is commonly found among university professors, characters in Woody Allen movies and public thinkers of the sort that might appear on C-SPAN but not CNN…"

So Obama has trouble communicating because he's just too darned intelligent. [link]
Honestly, I've never read anything so preposterous in my life.

What is it with these Obama worshipers?

I Can Live With This

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie thinks "global warming" is real.  I don't.  He says 90% of the scientists who study the subject agree with him.  For now, he's right.

Either way, as long as he's not holding a gun to my head or demanding that I change my way of life to suit his whimsy, I couldn't care less what a northeast governor of a liberal state believes when it comes to anthropogenic warming.

More favorably, he's not prepared to waste the taxpayers' hard-earned income in pursuit of that - perhaps - windmill:
Chris Christie: Global warming is 'real,' but program is ineffective
By Darren Samuelsohn, Politico

Chris Christie wants it known he’s not a skeptic on global warming.

Before the Republican New Jersey governor launched into an explanation Thursday for why he’s bowing out of a landmark regional cap-and-trade program for power plants, he first strapped on his layman scientist’s cap to give a brief overview of what’s widely considered accepted climate science.

“In the past I’ve always said that climate change is real and it’s impacting our state,” Christie said at the start of a 14-minute prepared statement. “There’s undeniable data that CO2 levels and other greenhouse gases in our atmosphere are increasing. This decade, average temperatures have been rising. Temperature changes are affecting weather patterns and our climate.”

Christie said he made his decision to pull the Garden State out of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative following a 16-month internal review that included town hall meetings and private chats with climate scientists, academics and environmentalists.

"I’m certainly not a scientist, which is the first problem," he said. "So I can’t claim to fully understand all of this, certainly not after just a few months of study. But when you have over 90 percent of the world’s scientists who have studied this stating that climate change is occurring and that humans play a contributing role, it’s time to defer to the experts."

Still, Christie argued that RGGI hasn't done the job when it comes to curbing greenhouse gases.

He said RGGI emission allowances have not reached the $20-to-$30-per-ton threshold many experts say is needed to get energy producers to switch to lower-carbon fuels and make other changes to their business practices. [link]
There are actually three topics for discussion here.

1) Is the planet warming?  Over the last few decades, yes.

2) Are humans causing the planet to warm?  As far as I'm concerned those infamous computer models have been woefully inaccurate and have proven nothing.

3) If the planet is warming, has anyone come up with a solution that will stop it, short of sending humanity back into the Stone Age?  No.

And I think that's what Christie is arguing.

He and I disagree about "warming."  He and I agree that the taxpayers shouldn't be wasting their money to make frightened scientists sleep better at night.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

The You-Can't-Make-This-Up Headline of the Day

They's them and they's us:

U.S. Transportation Secretary rolls up in big SUV to unveil new fuel economy stickers

Fuel economy, as Al Gore will attest, like the nation's laws, as Bill Clinton will attest, is for the little people.

Webb Conveniently Forgets His History

I had every intention of agreeing with our one-hit wonder of a United States senator, Democrat James Webb, when I read this.  Until he opened his mouth and stuck both feet in it.  Here's the "retiring" Mr. Webb addressing the War Powers Clause in the Constitution and the War Powers Act (I'm guessing) and their non-use:
Webb: U.S. 'blasé' on use of force
By Mike Allen, Politico

Sen. Jim Webb, a Vietnam War hero and former secretary of the Navy, said President Barack Obama “needs to narrow his focus a bit when it comes to judgments about using military force” and needs to give more sway to the views of Congress.

“We have to have a very serious debate about presidential authority in terms of using the military around the world and have sort of a tighter string on these unilateral decisions that end up getting us into these situations,” Webb said in an interview for the POLITICO video series “A Decade of Fighting Terrorism.” [link]
I'm guessing he's hacked off about what we're doing - whatever it is we're doing - in Libya.

On that we agree.

But then Webb made this boneheaded statement:
You can’t have 535 commanders in chief. But at the same time, we have become — over the past 10 or 11 years — very blasé about the use of military force around the world. I never thought we would be so blasé as a nation in terms of where we’re going in and dropping bombs and doing these sorts of things. And we need to be a lot smarter about it.
Say what?

"10 or 11 years" of being "very blasé about the use of military force around the world"? That would take us back to George W. Bush's years. Does Webb suggest that we went nonchalantly into Iraq and Afghanistan?

Of course he does.

May I remind the good embarrassment of a senator of the following:
Begun and held at the City of Washington on Wednesday, the third day of January, two thousand and one,

Joint Resolution

To authorize the use of United States Armed Forces against those responsible for the recent attacks launched against the United States.

Whereas, on September 11, 2001, acts of treacherous violence were committed against the United States and its citizens; and

Whereas, such acts render it both necessary and appropriate that the United States exercise its rights to self-defense and to protect United States citizens both at home and abroad; and

Whereas, in light of the threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States posed by these grave acts of violence; and

Whereas, such acts continue to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States; and

Whereas, the President has authority under the Constitution to take action to deter and prevent acts of international terrorism against the United States: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

Section 1 - Short Title

This joint resolution may be cited as the 'Authorization for Use of Military Force'.

See "[Congressional] Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Terrorists."
It's understandable that Webb would want to drag the man he most despises in this country into his criticism of President Obama. But that being understood doesn't make it acceptable. Or in any way true.

Obama is "winging it" in Libya.

And for doing so he deserves Webb's criticism.

But George W. Bush had every necessary congressional approval in his pocket, achieved after lengthy debate and deliberation, before he launched Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan and Operation Iraqi Freedom in Iraq.

James Webb is entitled to his opinions. But he'll not get away with twisting the facts.

When's he leaving office again?

Palin's a what, again?

Let's revisit some stupid guy's comment about the next president of the United States:

"Sarah Palin Has Proven Herself To Be Profoundly Stupid."

I can only assume that pronouncement was made because she has a knack for doing things like this:

"Twitter is lighting up over President Obama’s bizarre guest-book autograph — seen in a photo taken by Getty Images/AFP — which he dated 'May 24, 2008.'"

Oh, wait. That wasn't Palin.

That was the guy who sends orgasms of joy down Chris Matthews' leg.

Expect that quote to appear on his show this evening.

When pigs fly ...

Okay, I'm Impressed

The first sentence alone makes me collapse in submission to this dude's grasp of history:

"I had never thought there were many similarities between the pleasure-loving Charles II of England and the more upright Barack Obama until this week."

Now if I were your average know-it-all pundit, I'd say, "Why, shoot, I think of the similarities between Obama and Charles II all the time."

But really.

My first guess went along these lines: Charles II.  Wasn't that the poor schmuck who got into it with Oliver Cromwell and ended up having his head separated from his shoulders?

Turns out?

No.

That was his father, appropriately named Charles I.

Charles II?  Here's what I've learned: He wore tights and had hair down to his butt crack.

Does Walter Russell Mead know something about Obama we don't?

I Feel Bad For My President

I heard about this on the radio yesterday and had to hunt down the video.  The moment caught on film has been described as an Obama screw-up relating to protocol and the Queen of England.    You can see it here and decide for yourself.

I can see how awkward the incident is, with Obama trying to do the obligatory "clinking-of-champagne-glasses" in a toast with Queen Elizabeth, while she looks at him and does nothing in response.

But I can't see how this is a faux pas on his part.  It appears to me that the whole thing was properly choreographed but a signal simply went awry.

If you watch closely it appears that the band was to strike up the British national anthem as soon as Obama had delivered his toast.  But the script went off track after he said, "To her majesty, the Queen."   Obama, having raised his glass, in his usual staccato manner hesitated at that point, leading the band director to believe that the toast, which is customarily brief anyway, had been done.  What happened then was seriously awkward for everyone there, as Obama went on to Sentence 2 of his toast and the band launched into "God Save the Queen" at the same time.  The queen, stopping to honor the national anthem, did nothing to reciprocate Obama's outstretched glass-gripped hand.

So Obama stood with his champagne aimed at her and the queen stood at attention.

Ouch.

Can't fault the dude for this one.

So let's get back to him ruining the country I love ...

What's a Vacation?

Americans gave up $67 billion worth of vacation days in 2010.

Stand Up and Fight!

Or pretend that America is not on the brink of disaster and let the Democrats define the issues of the day.

Karl Rove on that Republican loss in New York:
Five and a half weeks after House Republicans passed their budget, Democrats and liberal pundits have decided it is political kryptonite that will fatally weaken the GOP.

Their evidence is Tuesday's special election in New York's 26th district, where Democrat Kathy Hochul defeated Republican Jane Corwin for a vacant congressional seat. This is not just any congressional district, but one carried by George W. Bush and John McCain in the last two presidential elections, and one represented for 58 years by a Republican.

Liberals can barely contain their glee.

[T]he question remains: Did the Medicare reforms proposed by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan and supported by Ms. Corwin play a role in the outcome? The answer is yes, though not with the blunt force and trauma some Democrats are claiming.

Polling by American Crossroads (an independent expenditure group with which I'm associated) showed that while Ms. Hochul's Medicare attacks galvanized Democrats, they swayed few independents. Among voters who had an unfavorable view of Ms. Corwin, just 20% focused on Medicare, with most Democrats already voting for Ms. Hochul.

The GOP candidate did not respond with TV ads until the campaign's closing week, and only then with an ad many voters thought lacked credibility. It alleged Ms. Hochul had endorsed Medicare and Social Security cuts that she claimed she had not.

An earlier, more aggressive explanation and defense of the Ryan plan would have turned the issue: 55% in the Crossroads survey agreed with GOP arguments for the Ryan reforms while just 36% agreed with the Democrats' arguments against it.

Next year, Republicans must describe their Medicare reforms plainly, set the record straight vigorously when Democrats demagogue, and go on the attack. [link]
We all know that the Democrats are going to "rouse the rabble" over issues like Medicare (or "Mediscare" as the Wall Street Journal terms their effort at frightening seniors).  Republicans who seek office need to be prepared to deal with the deceit and go on the attack, as Rove (a guy who knows something about winning elections) advises.  Label the lies LIES.  And then confront the voters with this unshakable truth:  Unless changes are made to the bloated and unsustainable Medicare program, America will go bankrupt.

As Rove points out, even with that truth confronting them, Democrats won't care.  They want their handouts until the doors to the Big Food Bank in Washington close for good. 

Independents and Republicans, however, have a deeper need.  They want America to be robust and thrive.  And they, in overwhelming numbers, understand the serious dilemma facing our country.  The government is handing out hundreds of billions of dollars in freebies these days and can't pay for them.

Save America!  Make that a rallying cry and watch the votes roll in.

- - -

Or adopt the Democrat strategy and go with this:


You too can scare the urine out of the weak of mind.

Wisdom For The Ages

Liberals like to think that without all those federal agencies breathing down our necks, America would disintegrate into total upheaval.

Walter Williams challenges that preposterous notion with this little statement of "common sense":
Here are a few facts and then a question. Each Boeing 747 costs $317 million, its 777 goes for $284 million and its 737 sells for $80 million. Airbus' giant 555-plus passenger A380 sells for $375 million. Here's a true or false statement: If it weren't for the FAA, airline company CEOs would not take the necessary measures to ensure that their aircraft took off and landed safely.
The same holds true for, say, meat packing companies. Liberals like to believe that without those USDA meat inspectors walking the slaughterhouse assembly line, we'd all die of ptomaine poisoning.

Ask any corporate type who works in manufacturing (those who actually know the business, unlike liberals) and he or she will give you a different explanation for their producing disease/germ-free products - they don't want to be sued when their customers become ill having eaten their produce. 

Just ask the unemployed leadership at Peanut Corporation of America.  Put a faulty product on the market and the feds will be the last of your thoughts.

Then there's the simple issue considered by those CEO's who are deathly afraid that their company will gain a reputation of producing inferior (as opposed to faulty) stuff.  A reputation that doesn't bring about lawsuits, but doesn't bring about any sales either.  A la General Motors.

Not that any of this will change the mindset.  Liberals think we need inspectors to keep corporations in line.  Those who run America's corporations shrug and say:

Whatever.  Just get it over with.  We have work to do.

* Let's talk about OSHA sometime.

If a Tree Falls In The Forest ...

One of those annoying and irrational MSNBC talking heads, according to the news, has been yanked from the air for having done what annoying and irrational MSNBC talking heads routinely do.

The question of the day is: With this fat bastard's viewership ratings being so bad, will anyone notice that he's gone?

It's Enough To Give You Sleepless Nights

You have to admit, the Republican Party of Virginia produces the best political videos on the planet.

The latest in a long line of many that bring smiles, from "RPV Films":

RPV Presents a Democratic Horror Movie: "Raise the Gas Tax"



On a more serious note, can those fools really be contemplating a gas tax at this point in our struggling lives? Are they that out of touch with the common folk?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Where There's Smoke There's ...

... nothing.

One would think, when a guy writes a tell-all book about former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, there'd be some there there.  Especially when he's quoted as saying:

"I am convinced that her priorities and per­son­al­ity are not only ill suited to head a political party or occupy national office, but would lead to a disaster of, well, biblical proportions.”

A disaster of Biblical proportions?

Gosh.

So what is it that this ex-director of boards and commissions under Palin (a critical post one can only imagine) has on the Sarahcuda?  Did she snort cocaine in high school (as our president freely admits that he did)?  Did she rape someone (as a former president is accused of having done)?  Did she withhold evidence from a grand jury probe (as the wife of the alleged rapist and former presidential candidate in her own right was accused of having done)?

No.

Something far worse:

"Bailey also helped smear a neighbor who complained about excessive tourist traffic around the governor’s mansion. After hearing of the gripe, Palin sent her daughter Piper out to sell lemonade and then derided her neighbor for protesting children at play. Soon, the neighbor was portrayed on conservative blogs as 'sick,' 'unhinged' and 'drug-addicted.'"

AAaaaagggghhhh!!!

What?!  A lemonade stand?!  And what??  The immoral and unforgiveable act of DERIDING

Let's see.  Vince Foster was murdered because he knew too much.  And Juanita Broaddrick was raped because she was a woman and Bill had a "stiffy."  And the person(s) who committed those acts are feted to this day by the press as being greater beings than the rest of us.

But let Sarah Palin set up a lemonade stand and, by God, we are not going to take it!!  It's ... Biblical!  You hear me?  We are not going to allow it!

These people crack me up.

Okay, I Was Wrong

I mentioned my bemusement the other day over the news that Delegate Ward Armstrong might pack up and move to another district just so as to be able to keep his part-time $18000 a year job in the Virginia legislature.  I couldn't believe that career politicians would go to such lengths.

But then I was subjected to a story in the New York Times about lefty wacko Dennis Kucinich thinking about leaving his congressional district in Ohio and moving to Washington (state) and running for a seat in Congress there.

It then made sense.  If worms like Dennis Kucinich didn't have politics, who in their right mind would hire them?

Lo and Behold

First we are told that "Species Extinction Rates [have been] Grossly Overestimated" by the experts (whether intentionally or not has yet to be determined).  And now this:
The Myth of Killer Mercury
By Willie Soon and Paul Driessen, Wall Street Journal

The Environmental Protection Agency recently issued 946 pages of new rules requiring that U.S. power plants sharply reduce their (already low) emissions of mercury and other air pollutants. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson claims that while the regulations will cost electricity producers $10.9 billion annually, they will save 17,000 lives and generate up to $140 billion in health benefits.

There is no factual basis for these assertions. To build its case against mercury, the EPA systematically ignored evidence and clinical studies that contradict its regulatory agenda, which is to punish hydrocarbon use.

Mercury has always existed naturally in Earth's environment. A 2009 study found mercury deposits in Antarctic ice across 650,000 years. Mercury is found in air, water, rocks, soil and trees, which absorb it from the environment. This is why our bodies evolved with proteins and antioxidants that help protect us from this and other potential contaminants.

How do America's coal-burning power plants fit into the picture? They emit an estimated 41-48 tons of mercury per year. But U.S. forest fires emit at least 44 tons per year; cremation of human remains discharges 26 tons; Chinese power plants eject 400 tons; and volcanoes, subsea vents, geysers and other sources spew out 9,000-10,000 additional tons per year.

All these emissions enter the global atmospheric system and become part of the U.S. air mass. Since our power plants account for less than 0.5% of all the mercury in the air we breathe, eliminating every milligram of it will do nothing about the other 99.5% in our atmosphere. [link]
Along with the hysteria thrown at us about species extinction, we find out that they've been making this up as well.

Can we trust leftists to tell us the truth ever?

Can We Talk About Oprah?

Sure, she has more money than the U.S. Treasury has (well, since our treasury is $14,351,47,438.14 in debt, I guess I do too). And she can spend it however she wishes.

But am I the only person who finds it a bit indecorous for the gal to buy a magazine, put her monicker on its masthead big and bold, and then feature on its cover a warm "thank you" to herself for all her years of merriment and moneymaking?


What next? Will she award herself the title of Miss Planet Earth?

"For the joy, the laughs, the lessons, the adventures of a lifetime ..."

It's her dough but ... please.

I Have To Laugh

The mainstream press, it appears, is just aghast at how Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had the temerity to "lecture" President Obama on national television the other day.  One longtime cheeleader for the Democratic Party even called his (respectful) seven-minute speech in the Oval Office "rude."

You just don't treat American presidents like that, don't ya know.

George W. Bush, Ronald Reagan, and George H.W. Bush being the willful and enthusiastic exceptions to their rule, of course.

One can only smile ...

CNN Anchor, Smoke Nazi

And proud of it.

See "CNN Anchor Shamelessly Lauds Mayor Bloomberg's Newest Smoking Ban."

She doesn't like the smell of smoke when she's out jogging in New York City parks. It offends her.  So she's happy that those who smoke in New York City must now do so in their homes (as she says, ""that is still legal, at least for now") so that she can run in blissful contentment.

I wonder if there will be those who will want jogging in New York City parks banned next because of the underarm stench created by people like this small-minded and selfish anchorette, a smell that offends them.

Tit for tat, babe.

Quote of the Day

From (seemingly) eight-year-old Michael Moore:
The auto thing is a good example too of where I wish Obama would just, if he would just ratchet it up another notch. Yes, he saved the jobs of all my friends back in Michigan. But now that we sort of control the car companies, let's get them doing mass transit. Let's get them doing things that are going to save this planet. Because the internal combustion engine is not going to get us to the 22nd century. That's just not going--we're not going to have a planet. That has to stop. And I just thought: gee, we have this power. You know, you can do things.
Gee. Do you suppose this guy will ever reach adolescence?

Barnie Day's Latest

He was kind enough several years ago to give me a copy of his uproariously funny, yet informative, and enlightening, and at times shocking book about the dealings and machinations of the Virginia legislature entitled "Notes From The Sausage Factory."  Although he was just the editor, his writing style proved to be engrossing in its own right.

Well, our own Barnie Day has a new book out.  And it looks like it might be worth the $4.99 it'll cost to download.  (That's right.  No trees were killed in the making of this book.)  For those of you who have e-reader capablilities:


The Last Pahvant.

The scoop from the publisher, Smashwords:
The Last Pahvant
Ebook By Barnie Day
Published: May. 19, 2011
Category: Fiction » Literature » Historical
Words: 83046 (approximate)
Language: English

Ebook Description
An astonishing prodigy is raised in a squatters' camp on the Colorado River during the Great Depression. An orphan, she flashes to world acclaim when discovered by The New York Times. Searing loss and heartbreak follows.
You can get an excerpt of the book here at EPUB*.

Take a look.  Intriguing.

- - -
* There are lots of ways to download books these days to your e-reader, each having advantages over the other depending on the operating system that you're using.  EPUB is the most user-friendly format for my kind of setup.  I save books in EPUB format to something called Calibre, a really cool and easy to use e-book management system, where I store them (to my desktop computer), organize them, refashion them, and upload them, as the need arises, to my e-reader.

Works great.  No hassles.  No screw-ups.

Just a suggestion.

Memo To Tim Kaine:

If the Nixon Tapes saga taught us anything, it's that stonewalling only makes things worse for the accused.

What, do you actually think you can keep this from blowing up in your face until election day, 2012?

Seems so.

A shot across the bow from the Republican Party of Virginia:
Governor McDonnell Acts to Keep Murderer Behind Bars, Kaine Stonewalls on Release Decision

-- RPV Chairman Mullins calls for Kaine to open his Soering records to the public--

Statement of RPV Chairman Pat Mullins on Gov. McDonnell's announcement regarding Jens Soering:

"I applaud Governor McDonnell's decision not to intervene in the case of Jens Soering. Releasing Soering into German custody could see him released in as little as two years. A jury of 12 Virginians sentenced Soering to two life terms in prison, and Governor McDonnell's action makes sure that the sentence imposed by that jury will be carried out.

"At the same time, I'm surprised that we haven't heard more from former DNC Chairman Kaine about this issue. Chairman Kaine's recently said that he has 'no regrets' regarding his decision to allow Soering return to Germany, and a spokeswoman's said Kaine  'welcomes questions on any part of his record.'

"Just last week, we provided Chairman Kaine with a pre-written records release that, with his signature, would open up his files and let us understand his decision-making process.

"If Chairman Kaine truly has 'no regrets' about how he handled this situation, then he shouldn't be ashamed to let us see what went into the decision making process.

"Just what is Tim Kaine so afraid for Virginia voters to see?" [link]
I guess Kaine would rather shift the conversation to taxes or something. Or Bush's war.

If only W. were still around to scapegoat ...

A Memo From Phil Puckett

Our senator (from Virginia's 38th district), Phil Puckett, sends out the following reminder:
I wanted to remind you that [today] there will be a public hearing about the Appalachian Power rate increases. I hope you can attend. It is important that we voice together our opposition to these rate increases. If you can not attend and have not e-mailed me a letter to hand deliver at the public hearing you can e-mail me at phillip@senatorpuckett.com. The meeting will start at 5:00 p.m. and will be held in the Abingdon High School Auditorium. The address is 705 Thompson Dr. Abingdon, VA. I hope to see you there.

Phillip
FYI

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The World Is Coming To An End!

Where have we heard that before?

Oh. Yeah. Al Gore.

As we watch the media contemptuously ridicule Christians over that California evangelical's prediction that the world was coming to an end last Saturday (initial reports indicate that it didn't), there is this, from James Taranto, worth remembering:
Something else bothers us about the media mockery of Harold Camping, as justifiable as it may be. Why are only religious doomsday cultists subjected to such ridicule? Reuters notes that "Camping previously made a failed prediction Jesus Christ would return to Earth in 1994." Ha ha, you can't believe anything this guy says! But who jeered at the U.N.'s false prediction that there would be 50 million "climate refugees" by 2010? We did, but not Reuters.

Doomsday superstitions seem to fulfill a basic psychological need. On the surface, the thought that God or global warming will destroy the world within our lifetimes is horrifying. But all of us are doomed; within a matter of decades, every person alive will experience the end of his own world. A belief in the hereafter makes the thought of death less terrifying. But so does a disbelief in the here, after. If the world is to end with us--if there is no life for anyone after our death--we are not so insignificant after all.

To reject traditional religion is not, as the American Atheists might have it, to transform oneself into a perfectly rational being. Nonbelievers are no less susceptible to doomsday cults than believers are; Harold Camping is merely the Christian Al Gore. But because secular doomsday cultism has a scientific gloss, journalists like our friends at Reuters treat it as if it were real science. So, too, do some scientists. It may be that the decline of religion made this corruption of science inevitable.
Harold Camping is considered by the really smart set in this country to be a fool for predicting, wrongly as it turns out, that the world is was coming to an end.

So why are they silent when it comes to Al Gore doing the exact same thing?

Is there ... an inconvenient truth ... they dare not face?

Sinister or Just Foolhardy?

So Libya is in flames.  Egypt is disintegrating.  The Syrian government is slaughtering its own citizens in its streets by the hundreds.  Tunisia is a seething cauldron of unrest and discontent.  Algerians clash with the police.  Protesters march in Bahrain.  Morocco and Kuwait, ditto.

And Barack Obama feels it's time for Israel to give up land to the Arabs.

To secure ... peace ... in ... the ... Middle ... East.

For the love of God.

OK, This Got My Attention

Someone needs to say it.  In fact, someone needs to shout it from the rooftops.

We cannot afford this waste.  We're going broke.  Stop the madness.

It wasn't just that he said it. It's where he said it that makes me think better of him:
Pawlenty on Ethanol
The GOP candidate takes on King Corn in Iowa, of all places.
Wall Street Journal

One of the immutable laws of modern American politics is that no candidate who wants to win the Iowa Presidential caucuses can afford to oppose subsidies for ethanol. So it's notable—make that downright amazing—that former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty launched his campaign for the Republican Presidential nomination Monday by including a challenge to King Corn.

"The truth about federal energy subsidies, including federal subsidies for ethanol, is that they have to be phased out," Mr. Pawlenty told a crowd in Des Moines. "We simply can't afford them anymore."

He's certainly right about that, though that hasn't stopped nearly every other candidate from deploring the federal deficit while supporting the most egregious of corporate welfare subsidies. This marks a change for Mr. Pawlenty, who over two terms leading Iowa's northern neighbor first fought farmers on subsidies but later supported their push for a 20% ethanol mandate for gasoline. But in refusing to stick to the script for candidates looking to harvest votes in February's Iowa caucuses, Mr. Pawlenty has passed an early test of fortitude. By opposing ethanol despite the political risks, Mr. Pawlenty will also gain credibility to tackle other energy subsidies that drain the federal fisc to little good effect.

Intriguingly, Mr. Pawlenty said he's also ready to take on other taboos of modern politics. "Conventional wisdom says you can't talk about ethanol in Iowa or Social Security in Florida or financial reform on Wall Street," he said. "But someone has to say it." Maybe this Presidential season will be more interesting than we've imagined. [link]
Barack Obama came into office with great fanfare and a lot of talk about "hope and change."  So what about our unsustainable Social Security system has he even proposed to change?  What has he done to end the monstrously wasteful ethanol subsidies to those "rich corporations" (the mega-farmers in Iowa) that he wails so much about?  In truth, he didn't bring "hope and change" to Washington; he brought more of same.

Perhaps Tim Pawlenty is cutting his throat by going this route.  All the experts seem to agree that a good politician doesn't do what he's doing.

Maybe so.

But this walk we're taking off the cliff has to be halted.  Someone needs to be there to stop the seemingly unstoppable plunge to our deaths.  Obama has proven himself unwilling or incapable of being that person.

Tim Pawlenty?

Hmm.

I've Had About Enough Of This

I have a question for this New York Times columnist:
This summer has the potential to be another turning point for the electorate, and it’s not necessarily pegged to the performance of the president. It may hinge largely on the callousness of conservatives and their seemingly inexorable desire to overplay their hand.

This may be the summer that we see more clearly that the working class has developed a lingering sense of disillusionment, that right-wing politicians have developed an unshakeable immunity to empathy and that corporations have developed a taste for blood squeezed from turnips.

And it may be the summer for seeing through the right-wing squawk machine that hopes to distract us from the damage the rich and the right are doing by manically hurling torches at the Obama administration to see if something catches fire.
I'm conservative. I'm the guy you're trying (poorly) to chastise.  And here's what you fail to recognize: I've given, over the years, career opportunities to hundreds, if not thousands, of those "working class" individuals whom you wouldn't know if you had to step over them as they lay on the sidewalk outside your New York Times headquarters building. You offer up op/ed columns that are read by your fellow elite.  Callous?  How many Americans have you offered paychecks to, Mouth?

Pffffftttttt

Howard Dean's An Idiot

What a chump:


I - a member in good standing of the "far-right" - can honestly say I hate no one.

But having to endure dimwitted, clueless Democratic politicians gets me almost there.

Good Grief

Monday, May 23, 2011

How to Spot a Career Politician

The mindset escapes me.  What government gig is worth this?
Armstrong will run again, but where?
By Michael Sluss, Roanoke Times

Democrat Ward Armstrong of Henry County is running for another term in the House of Delegates.

But the House minority leader hasn’t decided what district he will seek to represent.

Armstrong said today that he is considering moving to an adjacent district rather than staying in a redrawn district and battling Republican Del. Don Merricks of Chatham.

He’s thinking about moving into the 9thHouse district, represented by Republican Charles Poindexter of Franklin County, or the 14th District, represented by Republican Danny Marshall of Danville. Staying put also is an option.

“I’m considering all three districts,” said Armstrong, who intends to make a decision in early June. [link]
Is he serious?  Would Armstrong pack up and move so that he can keep his part-time, $18,000 a year job?  Is his life outside government that meaningless?

Seems so.

Kinda pathetic when you think about it.

- - -

* At least when I made household moves (many times) over the years, a lot more money was dangled in front of me.  Armstrong's motivation?   Helping the downtrodden?  Couldn't he do more good as a nun?

I just don't get it.

Speaking of Hysterics

Are we to believe one word of this?
Environmental report aimed at Va. coal-fired plant
Associated press

Norfolk, Va. (AP) -- A report by the Chesapeake Bay Foundation concludes a $6 billion coal-fired plant in Surry County would create a range of negative health and economic impacts.

The report released Monday in Norfolk says pollution from the power plant could trigger hundreds of asthma attacks, cause dozens of premature deaths and cost millions in health care costs. [link]
"[H]undreds of asthma attacks, dozens of premature deaths and cost millions in health care costs [sic]"?

A two word response is in order:

Non.

Sense.

Or, better yet:

Prove.

It.

No.  Even better:

Shut.

Up.

Reality TV

Only this one was really reality.

I tuned in to the Weather Channel yesterday evening to catch the local weather radar and found myself riveted - for the next few hours - to the story coming out of Joplin, Missouri.  The unfolding story of widespread devastation and human tragedy.

As it turned out, the WC had a reporter, Mike Bettes, tracking the storm on the ground as it pushed through Kansas and into Missouri, and, as events unfolded, he arrived on scene before most any first-responders did, no more than half an hour after the incident occurred.  Shocked and awed by the destruction around him, Bettes at one point broke into uncontrollable spasms of tears and pleaded for help from local, state, and regional authorities.  Help that was painfully slow in coming.

I too was shocked and awed by the desolation left in the twister's wake.

I had to wonder, as Bettes stumbled through the debris that, moments before, were homes, what was happening at that hospital that was just across the street. The one that looked to have every one of its windows blown out and with smoke rising (apparently) from an auxiliary building at its rear entrance.

A hospital.  Presumably full of patients.  With not one ambulance light flashing around it or emergency crew member responding to its obvious needs.

The feeling of helplessness ...

Well, here's the rest of the tragic story:
Death Toll Rises to 89 From Missouri Tornado
By Noam Cohen, New York Times

The tornado that steamrolled over Joplin, Mo., late Sunday night killed at least 89 people and left much of the small town in ruins, the city manager, Mark Rohr, told reporters early Monday morning.

The twister, which touched down at around 6 p.m. on Sunday, spread its destruction over a wide swath of the town, ripping apart buildings, touching off fires and tossing cars into mangled stacks of metal. Television images and video posted to the Web captured scenes of devastation that hinted at the storm’s power as neighborhoods appeared to vanish into violent piles of lumber and debris.

A major hospital in town, St. John’s Regional Medical Center, had to be abandoned, witnesses said, and the triage unit set up on its grounds to care for the patients had to be temporarily moved across the street when the hospital caught fire.

Joplin, which was in the direct path of the tornado, was left isolated and in the dark after the destruction, with telephone connections largely cut off and many homes without electricity.

Initial reports from Joplin said that schools, apartment buildings, megastores and fire stations were ravaged by the tornado. [link]
The storm moves east.

Joplin tries to dig out.

And soon will begin burying its dead.

Life goes on.

May God have mercy.

Why Do We Put Up With This?

Barack Obama's words about "the social compact" occasionally come to mind:

"This story could not exist without a basic social compact in this country. That compact says that if you work hard, your work will be rewarded. That everybody has an opportunity to make a decent living, to raise a family, to give their children the best chance at success, and to look forward to a secure retirement. That people like Fraser and Marian Robinson can give their children the chance to dream bigger, and to reach new horizons.

"That social compact is starting to crumble
."

And what's causing that "social compact" to crumble?

People like him.  And other people like that 350-pound waste of human flesh who leaches off the American taxpayer.  And who demands to do so:
Senator questions benefits to ‘adult baby’
By Stephen Dinan, Washington Times

A key senator has asked the Social Security Administration to investigate how people who live their lives role-playing as “adult babies” are able to get taxpayer-funded disability payments — after one of them was featured on a recent reality TV episode wearing diapers, feeding from a bottle and using an adult-sized crib he built.

Sen. Tom Coburn, Oklahoma Republican and the Senate’s top waste-watcher, asked the agency’s inspector general to look into 30-year-old Stanley Thornton Jr. and his roommate, Sandra Dias, who acts as his “mother,” saying it’s not clear why they are collecting Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits instead of working.

“Given that Mr. Thornton is able to determine what is appropriate attire and actions in public, drive himself to complete errands, design and custom-make baby furniture to support a 350-pound adult and run an Internet support group, it is possible that he has been improperly collecting disability benefits for a period of time,” Mr. Coburn wrote in a letter Monday to Inspector General Patrick P. O'Carroll Jr. [link]
The most enraging part?
In an email response to The Washington Times, Mr. Thornton threatened to kill himself if his Social Security payments are taken away, and said the television episode showing him doing woodwork oversold his abilities.

“You wanna test how damn serious I am about leaving this world, screw with my check that pays for this apartment and food. Try it. See how serious I am. I don’t care,” the California man said. “I have no problem killing myself. Take away the last thing keeping me here, and see what happens. Next time you see me on the news, it will be me in a body bag.”
Let me speak for those who pay for this sack of shit's way of life. We're no longer interested in keeping you in diapers. We will, however, pay for that body bag.

So please, do us a favor. End it now. We who nurture that "social compact" that Obama is fond of babbling about are tired of working 50 hours a week so that you can lay in bed and suck from baby bottles.

Make good on your threat.

Or man up.

Either way.

- - -

A picture speaks a thousand words. This one courtesy of NatGeoTV and the Washington Times:





What a miserable excuse for a human being.

Maybe I'm Cold-Hearted ...

... but the most interesting aspect to this story about police officers in Tucson shooting a bad guy was the fact that officers fired 72 rounds from outside the perp's residence and hit their target with 60 bullets.

(Overkill?  You stand in their shoes for a day.)

60 hits out of 72 shots fired.

I want those guys on my side when the revolution comes.

How Much Are You Willing To Sacrifice?

Let's talk about inconvenience.  Drive a conventional gasoline-powered car and your biggest gripe might be with "git-up-n-go" or with the rear window defogger taking too long to clear the glass of morning haze.  Or with the floor mats.  Or getting 23 miles to the gallon instead of the advertised 25.

But one of those electric cars that are all the rage?

The word "inconvenience" takes on a whole new meaning.

If you're willing to put up with this  - "Review: Nissan Leaf: Day Three" - you're a masochist.

Or a loony environmentalist.

Or both.

For $35,000 I'll stick to something that will get me to the grocery and back, without fear of being stranded on the interstate, thank you.

To Those Who Think 'Climate Change' Is Settled Science

Princeton PhD William Happer asks that you think again:
The Truth About Greenhouse Gases
The dubious science of the climate crusaders.

I want to discuss a contemporary moral epidemic: the notion that increasing atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases, notably carbon dioxide, will have disastrous consequences for mankind and for the planet. The “climate crusade” is one characterized by true believers, opportunists, cynics, money-hungry governments, manipulators of various types—even children’s crusades—all based on contested science and dubious claims.

The earth’s climate has always been changing. Our present global warming is not at all unusual by the standards of geological history, and it is probably benefiting the biosphere.

The supposed reason for limiting [CO2] is to stop global warming—or, since the predicted warming has failed to be nearly as large as computer models forecast, to stop climate change. Climate change itself has been embarrassingly uneventful, so another rationale for reducing CO2 is now promoted: to stop the hypothetical increase of extreme climate events like hurricanes or tornados. But this does not necessarily follow. The frequency of extreme events has either not changed or has decreased in the 150 years that CO2 levels have increased from 270 to 390 ppm.

Let me summarize how the key issues appear to me, a working scientist with a better background than most in the physics of climate. CO2 really is a greenhouse gas and other things being equal, adding the gas to the atmosphere by burning coal, oil, and natural gas will modestly increase the surface temperature of the earth. Other things being equal, doubling the CO2 concentration, from our current 390 ppm to 780 ppm will directly cause about 1 degree Celsius in warming. At the current rate of CO2 increase in the atmosphere—about 2 ppm per year—it would take about 195 years to achieve this doubling. The combination of a slightly warmer earth and more CO2 will greatly increase the production of food, wood, fiber, and other products by green plants, so the increase will be good for the planet, and will easily outweigh any negative effects. Supposed calamities like the accelerated rise of sea level, ocean acidification, more extreme climate, tropical diseases near the poles, and so on are greatly exaggerated.

“Mitigation” and control efforts that have been proposed will enrich a favored few with good political ties—at the expense of the great majority of mankind, including especially the poor and the citizens of developing nations. These efforts will make almost no change in earth’s temperature. Spain’s recent experiment with green energy destroyed several pre-existing jobs for every green job it created, and it nearly brought the country to bankruptcy. [link]
Read the whole thing.

You'll be seeing a whole lot more articles like this now that the global warming hysteria that gripped the scientific community for the last several years is waning, and science kicks in again.

And none too soon.  The hysterics were on the verge of destroying the planet to save us from - as it turns out - them.

A lesson to be learned.  Names to be taken.  Punishments to be handed out.

Let's not let this ever happen again, what say?

The Only 'Fair' Way To Go

Why I support the "Fair Tax":
The Political Basis for the FairTax
By Robert E. Dell and David G. Tuerck, American Thinker

As the current debate over fiscal reform suggests, very few proposals for fundamental changes in tax policy have the potential to command support across the ideological spectrum. The "FairTax" is the great exception. Correctly understood, the Fair Tax Act (HR 25, S13 with 67 cosponsors), which would replace almost all federal taxes with a direct tax on consumption, should appeal to conservatives, progressives, and libertarians alike.

Let's start with conservatives. The FairTax enjoys more support from this quarter than any other tax reform proposal, including the flat tax and the reforms outlined in Congressman Paul Ryan's Path to Prosperity. The latter two reforms provide for large personal exemptions and do not specifically tax imports. By taxing a wider base with a lower comprehensive average marginal rate, on the other hand, the FairTax encourages more new hiring and faster economic growth. Several dynamic simulation studies suggest U.S. GDP could be 10% higher in a few years under the FairTax than under the current tax code.

But the FairTax should appeal to progressives as well. It eliminates subsidies to Cadillac health plans and millionaire mansions, along with the regressive Social Security tax. It makes the wealthy pay taxes on their consumption while permitting the poor to consume tax free. It eliminates every vestige of corporate welfare that is embodied in today's tax code.

Libertarians, for their part, should celebrate the end of income tax withholding. As FairTax proponents Neal Boortz and John Linder have put it: "[I]ncome taxes are seized. Consumption taxes are paid." Equally celebrated should be the end of the practice of ratcheting up the tax rates on top earners in the pursuit of new revenues and of selling tax expenditures to special interests for votes or campaign support. The FairTax calls for one universally transparent rate to be paid by everyone on all final consumption. Thus, everyone acquires an economic interest in all government spending decisions and the tax code disappears as a playground for special pleaders. There should be a natural convergence of conservative, progressive, and libertarian pundits who oppose the blatant cronyism that goes on now. [link]
There's another reason to support the Fair Tax.  One I've mentioned on more than a few occasions.  When all the other taxes are ended, and when paycheck withholding comes to an end, and support for federal government spending is levied at the time consumers make a buying transaction (in the form of a sales tax), only then will they face the stark reality as to just how much they are paying the government to "invest" in everything it spends our money on.

When that $30,000 car costs an additional $12,000 in federal sales tax, then the reality (the reality being this: that's essentially what we're paying now in taxes) will set in.  In a big, big way.

Maybe those same consumers will take a more active interest in Democrat proposals to raise taxes at that point.

That's also why - despite the author's suggestion that progressives should support it - they never will.  Higher taxes - especially the hidden kind - allow them to spend more.  And control our lives more.  Which is their ultimate goal.

So, even though it's a great idea, I don't see it happening.  At least not until enough Democrats are driven from office and America can get back down to the business of making America a better place to live.

Here's to the Fair Tax.  May it some day before I die become a reality.

Revisiting ObamaCare

It's a simple question.  Now that it's been the law of the land for a good length of time, is Obama's plan to rein in costs and provide for more recipients of free health care working?

The Wall Street Journal provides the answer (in "Republicans and Mediscare"):
This reality is underscored in the just-released annual report of the Medicare trustees. Democrats sold ObamaCare as a way to slow the growth of costs, but the report shows that the program's finances have deteriorated even since last year. Medicare is carrying $24.6 trillion in unfunded liabilities through 2085, and chief actuary Richard Foster says even that does "not represent a reasonable expectation for actual program operations."

As a matter of simple arithmetic, this problem can't be solved with tax increases, because health costs and thus government spending on health care are rising so much faster than the economy as a whole is growing. The U.S. capacity to pay for Medicare on present trend diminishes every year.

With ObamaCare, Democrats offered their vision for Medicare cost control: A 15-member unelected board with vast powers to set prices for doctors, hospitals and other providers, and to regulate how they should be organized and what government will pay for. The liberal conceit is that their technocratic wizardry will make health care more rational, but this is faith-based government. The liberal fallback is political rationing of care, which is why Mr. Obama made it so difficult for Congress to change that 15-member board's decisions.
Also comes a warning:
The political forces unleashed by ObamaCare will grow unimpeded if Republicans now retreat from offering an alternative. Once the White House's efforts to limit costs by fiat fail—as they inevitably will—liberals will turn to even harsher controls. This future is already emerging in post-Mitt Romney Massachusetts, and also in Vermont, which wants to move to single government payer.
There's this nagging thought that I can't shake that makes me think that the Democrats - at least a good number of them - intended for ObamaCare to be a massive failure all along, so as to be able to kick their effort up a notch and create their beloved single-payer system.  When that happens, our once-great health care delivery system will finally and forever be doomed to mediocrity and ineffectiveness.

Is our health care system to be nothing more than one that rations poor care like that of Britain?

Another question: When that happens, to what country will Obama and Pelosi travel to get competent, quality doctor care?

Would It Be Courage or Stupidity?

Really, Andrea?


History tells us that when the Republicans agree to a tax increase - which they've done way too many times over the years - the Democrats spend it. And more.

As that saying goes: Fool me once, shame on you; fool me eighty-five time, shame on me.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

It's Hard To Be a Republican

Everyone, right down to Rush Limbaugh, has been harshly critical of the national Republican Party of late for its being - or seeming to be - lost in the wilderness.  Adrift.  Without a clear message.  And they may be justified in their criticism.

But if Republicans lack a driving narrative, it could be because the electorate doesn't really have a good, hard stance on the issues of the day either.  Or, to put it another way, the people of the United States of America want their cake and eat it too.  Federal debt?  Fix it.  Taxes?  Lower them.  Defense?  Defend it!  Medicare and Social Security?  Hands off!

Uhhhhh.  What do you do with that?

Well, you do what Obama and his Democrats do.  You ignore all America's problems and attack Big Oil and Big Banks. (And you continue to attack a TV talk show host, Sarah Palin, and a radio talk jock, Rush Limbaugh; the searing issues of the day, don't ya know?) And you let Social Security and Medicare go headlong toward that cliff.  And you ignore defense spending (they have powerful contractor constituencies/donors too, make no mistake).  And you give lip service to the crushing federal deficit.  Unemployment?  Hey, let's talk about opening the immigration flood gates for our Latino brothers and sisters who will be flocking here by the millions to take jobs ... that don't exist.  It's the .. humane ... thing to do!

At least give the Democrats some credit.  They know what they hope to achieve with that smoke-and-mirrors and they are totally focused on achieving their goal.  That being reelection.

And the GOPers?  Pity them.  The poor bastards actually hope to solve America's oppressing problems.  Those that the American people demand be fixed.  As long as the solution doesn't have any adverse effect on their plans to vacation in Cancun.  Or mess with their Social Security.  Or reduce their free access to Medicare.  Or raise their taxes.  And why aren't we doing more for those pitiful polar bears in Alaska?  And the AIDS afflicted in Africa?  And our poverty-stricken schools ...

So the Republican Party isn't addressing "the issues."

BOO freaking HOO.

As in HOO could blame them?

How To Explain This?

Virginians have become appreciably more liberal on social issues over the last four years?  If a Washington Post poll, as portrayed by David Boaz with the Cato Institute, is a solid reflection of our attitudes, it sure seems so (click on the image to enlarge it):

Mr. Boaz:
Thanks to the generosity of Post polling director Jon Cohen, I can report that the percentage of Virginians who said they were socially liberal or moderate and fiscally conservative went from 16 in 2007 to 23 in the latest poll. This reflects a small increase in the number of social liberals and a larger increase in the number of fiscal conservatives. 
The Washington Post poll results - and analysis - can be found here.

I have a few comments (call them guesses):

1) The 2007 poll was taken just weeks after Virginians voted overwhelmingly against homosexual marriage.  The Post poll suggested that 31% of us were - to one degree or another - liberal, while 37% of us were conservative.  This despite the fact that 57% of the voters who turned out in November, 2006 voted conservative on this very "social" issue57%.  So be a bit suspect.

2) One wants to attribute the rise in social liberalism here in the Commonwealth to the growth in the D.C. suburbs, where government jobs have mushroomed in recent years and private-sector jobs have plateaued.  But that flies in the face of the flip side of the poll.  Considerably more Virginians are fiscally conservative now than four years ago.  How to explain that?

3) Much has been written - whether accurate or not is anybody's guess - about the decline of the evangelical movement in politics in recent years.  Could this be another reflection of that?  Maybe.  For that we need to consult an expert over at Liberty University (the powerhouse that Jerry Falwell built) (which thrives, by the way).  The "religious right" seems to have lost its sway since the days when - not long ago - a Pat Robertson or, more recently, a Mike Huckabee could draw legions to their cause.

4) "Social issues" go well beyond the issue of gay marriage.  On another subject that falls within this category - the legalization of pot - I'd be considered liberal.  And brutha, nobody ever considered me liberal.  (In fact I fall under the heading of libertarian on the issue, being accepting of getting government out of our smoking habits altogether.)

5) With social issues off the table in 2012 (unless Obama does something stupid like force gay marriage on the country by presidential decree) this bodes favorably for Senate candidate - and staunch conservative - George Allen.  His opponent, Tim Kaine, is best known in this start for his efforts - his repeated efforts - to raise our taxes.  An increasingly conservative electorate will not look kindly on that effort as 2012 rolls around.

(A memo to Kaine's handlers: get the gay marriage amendment and "gays in the military" back on the radar.  If you believe in the accuracy of this poll, that is.)

(A memo to George Allen: When Kaine's handlers try to resurrect these "social issues," laugh, and remind them that it was they who routinely criticize conservatives for "dwelling on ... social issues.")

* Graphic (modified in a small way by me) courtesy of the Cato Institute.