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

Sunday, May 01, 2011

'When Every Problem Looks Like a Nail & Your Only Tool Is a Hammer'

Well, nobody is ever going to accuse Virginia Congressman Bob Goodlatte of being a libertarian.  They might genuinely accuse him of being boneheaded, but they'll never pin the libertarian rap on him.

I just read his letter to the editor of the Roanoke Times that was published this morning (see "Gambling must stay within a state's border") and I marvel at how obtuse his reasoning is when it comes to the issue of internet gambling. If he had just left it at "the government holds a strict monopoly on it and don't screw with the government," I might understand him.

But this?

"Under current law, states have the ability to allow gambling, including Internet gambling, as long as ... [blah blah blah]."

Too funny. Too weird. "States have the ability to allow gambling"? States are in the active - and lucrative - business of gambling, dude.

But that's only funny, in a pathetic sort of way. This is shameful:

"It is common for illegal gambling businesses to boldly operate until law enforcement finds and stops them. This has turned state laws against gambling on their heads."

Really? Doesn't it simply mean that law enforcement failed in its duty to "find and stop them"?  What new piece of legislation is going to get them to do their freaking jobs?

And the justification for all this? Well, I could rest my case by telling you that Goodlatte quotes disgraceful Attorney General Eric Holder as being the foundation for his argument. No, I'm not kidding.

The quote from Obama's Legalist-in-Chief:

"We do not support the legalization of offshore gambling. When one looks at the negative impact that that has had on the lives of individuals -- the potential it has for problems that it might create even on a community-wide basis, it just seems to us that that is not something that we would necessarily want to support."

Which means, I'm sure, that this Holder fella is opposed to needle exchange programs and bungie jumping for the same reason.

Sure he is.

But getting beyond that nitwit, there is this from Goodlatte:

"Internet gambling has been used by organized crime to raise and launder money."

So have Moneygram and Western Union. And the Cayman Islands.  Are you going to ban them?

"The spread of gambling brings with it the onslaught of a host of social ills including bankruptcy, addiction, family breakdown and even suicide."

Oh, please.  Do we really want to start banning everything that people might become addicted to? Here, Bob, is but a partial list:

● Alcohol
● Aspirin
● Aerosol sniffing
● Action - any activity that is risky and produces adrenalin
● Adrenalin
● Amphetamines
● Anti Depressants
● Anime [look it up]
● Applause
● Art
● Arson
● Asthma
● Attention
● Authority
● Auto Racing

And that's just the A's, big guy.

Are you going to ban them all?

And if gambling is so bad, what do you plan on doing about the largest gambling establishment in the Commonwealth of Virginia?  As it's affectionately known here, the Scratchosky Gameosky Virginia Lotterosky?

Just how awful is gambling again, Mr. Gambling Brings With It The Onslaught Of a Host Of Social Ills?

Are you going to ban Virginia?

Look, here's the cold, hard truth: Stupid people are going to do things that are detrimental to their life spans.  Live with it.  Or not.  As the ... war ... on drugs has proven, you're not going to stop those stupid people from wrecking their lives no matter how many laws you pass anyway.

I don't expect much from a lot of Republicans.  But please.  If I want someone climbing in my shorts trying to save me from myself I'll get a hold of a Democrat, thank you.

If Only That Were The Extent Of It

Somehow liberals think that if they can just show that our government does something right it then should have license to do anything and everything.  With us.  To us.  For us.  Upon us.  At us.  On us.  Against us.  Despite us.

Case in point, the incongruously liberal Roanoke Times editorial page this morning. See "Buchanan solves its water problem":
There's a lot to celebrate in the news that Buchanan has improved the safety of its well water, an achievement in itself for the Botetourt County town of just 1,200 people.

Given the anti-Washington, small-government tenor of the times, Buchanan offers a reminder of the essential nature of government. Only effective government can ensure some things taken for granted in a developed nation, things as basic to life as clean drinking water.
One has to chuckle at the naïveté. We anarchists should be ashamed, and should marvel at the fact that various government entities banded together and actually did something that we consigned to them to do.

Earth to liberals: We conservatives rejoice when those we pay to do our collective bidding actually promote the general welfare of this nation.  But making water potable is a far cry from telling me how much I'm allowed to earn, what I can eat, how I'm to dress, and where I can get medical treatment.  And God help me if I think I'm going to be allowed to smoke a cigarette.

We expect our government to provide basic services that relate to national defense, infrastructure maintenance and improvement, protection of our lives and our property, and the ability to interact with one another without fear of reprisal (that freedom of speech thingy).  We even go so far as to allow for the government to involve itself in dealing with the health and well-being of the sick and infirm among us.

But anything beyond that and we got a problem.

Education policy?  Do you really want to go there?  Energy policy?  What energy policy?  Housing and urban development?  One word: Detroit.  Welfare?  Are we to cheer the fact that an increasing number of Americans who can't find work because, in part, the government has driven jobs overseas through punitive taxation and regulation are on relief and receive their handouts on time?

The government paid for a well to be dug in Buchanan, Virginia.  Oh, happy day.  So shut up if the government tells your children what they will be able to consume for the rest of their lives?

Pardon me.  The logic just doesn't get me there.

We Need To Handcuff Washington

I still like my proposal that requires (unless war is declared) the federal government to spend only that amount it took in in tax and tariff revenue the prior year.  No more of the "spending based on future economic growth projections" bullshit that has gotten us to the verge of fiscal collapse.  Ya got it?  Ya can spend it.  Ya don't got it?  Ya can't spend it.

I bring this up for a reason.  Just how bad were the projections that got us to where we are today?  Investor's Business Daily tells the shocking tale (you can click on the image to enlarge it):
From surplus to debt

In 2000, the United States had $3.4 trillion in debt held by the public. Based on policies in place at the time, the Congressional Budget Office projected in 2001 that the country could pay off its debt by the year 2008 and by 2011 have a $2.3 trillion surplus.

Here's the most damning part: a whole lot of people in Washington knew these projections weren't realistic. But they wanted to believe them. And they spent accordingly.

And here we are, on the edge of the precipice.

No, I like my plan. It's easy to measure, easy to understand, easy to implement, easy to follow, prevents calamity, boosts confidence, and it's risk-free.

Which means it'll never be adopted.

Too bad. This was such a lovely country.

The 'Birther' Issue Doesn't Die

So THIS is where Obama got that "birth certificate" the other day, huh?

I knew it! 

We want the real one, mister.

Hat tip to Bart Hinkle.

Quote of the Day

From Marc Morano:

"The idea that our SUVs are causing severe tornadoes is no better than in 1450 when Aztec priests encouraged people to sacrifice to the gods to end severe drought. We are going back to a primitive culture where we actually think we can affect the weather."

Climate Depot, April 29, 2011

Let's Talk About Herman Cain

I think it would be worthwhile to pause ...

... and reflect on the varied reasons for Obama's utter failure(s) as president of these United States.

(a) He was never the man he represented himself to be.

(b) He was never the man his handlers represented him as being.

(c) He was never the man his media represented him to be.

(d) Most importantly, nobody really knew, beyond the details from his brief stint as a United States senator, who the guy really was or what his background revealed. So his handlers and his media were able to construct - willfully and with malice aforethought - a persona - bigger than life - that totally misrepresented the man.

It's only now, when we are all committed to his success (or failure) that we find Obama to have been dismally unprepared for the job and woefully incapable of meeting the daunting challenges before him.

Though we demanded to know more about the guy, we should have done a whole lot more demanding. When it counted. When we could have moved past the empty suit and elected someone who could have actually been both competent and prepared.

America's mistake.

So along comes Herman Cain.

What do we know about him?

Well, he certainly has an eye-popping résumé.

And he says all the right things.

And the man can certainly wow a crowd with his soaring oratory.

And he's black.  So we'd have our own black candidate (!), so that all those who call us racists can see that we're not (again) (like it would make any difference) (and ours would be by-God 100% black, not half black like their black guy).

But is there any there there?

In truth, Obama has a dazzling résumé. And he says all the right things (the obligatory "I feel your pain" kind of stuff). And, when he has his teleprompter, he can deliver a rousing speech.  And he's almost as black as our black prospect would be.

Uh, we do see where that got us, right?

So let's get past all that. Is there any substance in Herman Cain? Does he have a plan that will get us out of the mess we're in or has he learned which platitudes play best to the crowd?  Is he a problem-solver or a cheerleader?

I, for one, don't have a clue.

So I'm withholding judgment.  Till I know more about him.

I'd advise others to do the same.

Herman Cain seems like the right candidate for our troubled times.  But seeming isn't believing anymore.

Come on down, Mr. Cain.  Talk to us.  Convince us that you're the man.  Our votes are here for the taking.

But understand, we'll be demanding more from you than a résumé, a nice pitch, and lofty platitudes (though we'll take the skin color without question; the charges about us being racists will be so amusing going forward).

Now's the time.  Sell yourself.  Prove to us that you're presidential material.  When you do, the world awaits.