Thursday, December 31, 2009

Will This Plot Help to Get Obama's Mind Right?,2933,581370,00.html

The above story came from the London Times by way of Fox News. Yemen claims it is overwhelmed with Islamic fundamentalist terror suspects and that it does not have the capability to counter them. Warnings have also emerged that this weeks terror attempt was not the only plot.
The media jumped on Republican criticisms of Obama's handling of this issue in wake of the foiled terror plot. However, Al Quaida's new aggressiveness demonstrates the fact that weakness invited this attempt. They knew that President Bush or a Republican successor would not hesitate to respond with all deliberate force to a terror attempt. Obama's victory last November and subsequent apology tour bore the fruit of an attempt to murder as many innocent Americans as possible.
Obama's conciliatory approach to Islamofascism needs to end. His apologies for America seeking to expand freedom to all peoples must end. Otherwise we are in for more, not less danger. Weakness will invite a war that shall never end. Firmness and resolve will destroy our enemies.
While Democrats debate the destruction of our economy, terrorists have been plotting again to harm us. We must hit back hard.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Commercializing Welcome Centers, Rest Areas Could Ease WVDOH Financial Burden

Forty some odd years ago NASA realized that a ball point pen would not write in space. They worked on the problem and spent over a million dollars to make a ball point pen that would write in zero gravity.

They were successful and developed a beautiful pen at great taxpayer’s expense, but NASA solved the wrong problem. The problem was not to make a pen write in space, but to just “write” in space. The Russians realized that they only needed to write in space, not use a ball point pen and simply used a five cent pencil instead of wasting a million dollars. The lesson is the first thing you must do to be successful in solving a problem is make sure you have identified the true problem.

At the end of November the amount of expected revenue for the West Virginia highway fund was down $14.6 million, mostly because of the poor economy. Immediately there was talk out of Charleston about raising taxes, but the tax rate is not the real problem. The real problem is the rising cost and reduced revenue. Until these problems are solved, the state’s Department of Highways will continue to have problems even in good economic times. The state must get creative on generating additional revenue and cutting cost.

There are 22 welcome centers and rest areas run by the WVDOH. Each costs approximately $500,000 a year in annual maintenance for a total of $11 million dollars. Two of these on the West Virginia Turnpike have a Federal exemption to allow them to be commercialized, which is pretty common on toll roads. However they also occur in a few other places on non-Toll Road Interstates, such as I-95 north of Baltimore, MD.

Commercialization of West Virginia’s other twenty rest areas and welcome centers could provide a partial solution to the WVDOH funding problems. As these are leased to private companies then a $10 million drain on the WVDOH would disappear as responsibility for the maintenance would shift from the state to the private companies. There would also be a revenue stream generated from the lease agreements. A drain on the state highway fund would be turned into revenue generation, all without putting any additional burden on the taxpayers.

There would also be employment benefits for the state. Each rest area at a minimum would end up with a fast food restaurant and a convenience store/gas station. The average fast food chain restaurant employs about 60 persons and the convenience store 10 persons. This would generate approximately 1,400 private sector jobs across the state from entry level fry cooks to well paid manager positions. As an example; if the two rest areas in Braxton County were commercialized in this way, the Braxton County unemployment rate could drop from 8.3% to 5.3% making it the lowest in the state.

The benefits do not stop at increased employment and reduced operating cost to the state. The free market approach also creates new tax revenue streams into the states coffers. The 1,400 new employees and the new businesses created will pay income taxes to the state. There will now be property taxes paid to the counties at the rest areas on the equipment installed where before there was none. Most important to WVDOH is the gasoline sold at the new filling stations will pay new taxes directly to the highway fund without raising taxes on struggling WV families.

In these hard economic times West Virginia must work to solve the correct problems and reduce the burden of taxes on all the people of the state in the process. We must look for new solutions to old problems and stop thinking the only solution is increasing taxes. Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The "N" Word

Federal action against coal operations in West Virginia has put hundreds of men and women out of work and denied the state its share of potential revenue. The Environmental Protection Agency has initiated a War on Coal to destroy mining operations. Right before Christmas, an EPA action resulted in the layoff of five hundred in Clay County.

What can the State of West Virginia do in response?

This may seem painful, but a way might exist to constitutionally void federal regulations. That is nullification.

Nullification doctrine first emerged in the 1830s from the mind of John C. Calhoun of South Carolina. Federal import taxes raised prices on manufactured goods, crippling farmers. Calhoun suggested that the state legislature pass an ordinance nullifying the tariff within the boundaries of the state. President Andrew Jackson met this action with a military deployment. Since then, nullification of a law passed by Congress has been seen as unconstitutional.

What about state legislative nullification of a federal agency regulation or executive order? The Constitution does recognize Congress's right to pass binding legislation. It does not recognize regulatory law or presidential executive orders. State governments are under no obligation to abide by these so called laws. In fact, the Tenth Amendment protects states from many of the laws that Congress uses to bind their actions today.

All states have to do to regain their sovereignty is to swear off of federal funds for anything. At that point, Congress has very little authority over what a state can or cannot do. West Virginia cannot arrest federal officials inspecting or making reports, but it can pass acts preventing the enforcement of executive branch regulations. Swearing off of federal funds does mean a huge drop in money for roads, schools, and other items. However, the drop in money is offset by the fact that the state no longer would have to spend countless resources on paperwork and unfunded federal mandates.

Nullification is a last ditch tactic because it will provoke a serious contitutional crisis. Thousands will gather soon in Austin, Texas to ask their governor to do that very thing. In the name of freedom, strong steps may have to be taken. The election of 2010 will go a long way towards moving back to a Republic, or forward to crisis.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Left Wing Policies Dramatically Hurt the Young

Obama and Democrats generally like to tout their popularity among the youth, even to the point of hauling out pre teens to voice approval of their policy initiatives, as if America ought to follow a ten year old on the country's gravest issues. The current Democratic Congress has already substantially harmed the young when it comes to employment and threatens to do more damage in the future.
According to Walter Williams at George Mason University, teenage employment has not seen such a bleak outlook since directly after World War II. The age 16-19 group currently sees 25% unemployment. When narrowed to blacks in that age range, the percentage jumps to 50%.
Small businesses employ more people than any other sector of the market in the United States. Minimum wage hikes slash away at their miniscule profit margins, forcing them to divest themselves of the luxury of extra part time help. Instead of hiring someone, they will do extra work or get family members to help. These are the places where a kid has teh best chance to find a solid starting job that will give him income and a real reference. Many 16 to 19 year olds do not just work for extra cash. but to support families started too early.
Worse news is coming down the pike. If health care deform and the massive taxes designed to support it pass, small business will take the brunt. They will lay off even more workers or shut their doors altogether.
The minority angle on this problem was explored further by Walter Williams in the link below

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas from the Potomac Highlands Conservative

Please enjoy the performance of the Keyser Middle School Jazz Band

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen

The Grinch

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Another Sign of Things to Come in 2010

Representative Parker Griffith of Alabama's 5th Congressional district announced yesterday that he will switch his registration to Republican as the country moves into its off election year.
In terms of legislation this affects voting in no way at all because Griffith voted a conservative line on most important issues. This does provide the GOP a psychological boost heading into one of its most important election years in recent memory. Griffith expressed his frustration with left wing Democratic ideals last fall to Tea Party activists and in town hall meetings.
Like many other Democrats who rode the anti GOP wave into office in 2006 and 2008, Griffith found himself in step with a majority Republican constituency, but increasingly opposed to the Pelosi led lurch to the left. Republican voting states found themselves denied their proportionate share of the so-called stimulus package, so Griffith had no tangible reason to remain with the Democratic Party either. His voters did not share Democratic beliefs, nor did they benefit by his association with them.
Voters in other areas that have elected Democrats for years find themselves under attack by the federal government and Congress. The West Virginia First and Third districts have congressional incumbents currently rolling over for Pelosi. Since they will not represent their constituents, it is time that the constituents elect someone who will represent them.

Communist Leader Adorns Obama Whitehouse Christmas Tree

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Another Democrat Believes in Bringing Back Legal Sedition

Is this really what the Democratic Party stands for? Several months ago they wanted citizens to report on their friends, family, and neighbors if they heard peopel criticize the health care deform plans. Others favored passing regulations that would destroy conservative talk radio shows. Now an elected member of Congress wants to attack the free speech of a Florida citizen who dared to parody his website.

Is this really the party that Thomas Jefferson and James Madison founded? First they trample the rights of the states, then the citizens. Some of them have no concern for the Bill of Rights, nor do they believe in natural rights' legal ideals. People like this gentleman want your money, the power to control you, and for you to kindly shut up while they are doing it. Of course he wants a citizen put in jail for five years for making a parody of his website, all the while calling female professionals whores and comparing Republicans to Nazis.

Most people understand that Republicans labor under a double standard in politics and the media. I would hope that no Republican would want to jail another citizen for such a trivial thing, or even consider it a crime.

When satire becomes a crime, thousands of actors and commedians may have to find somewhere else to live.

Is This Really Compromise?

Senate Bill Still Cuts Hundreds of Billions from Medicare, Leaves West Virginians to Pay for Sweetheart Deals to Other States

CHARLESTON - As the United States Senate works frantically to meet its arbitrary Christmas deadline on "health care reform,” it appears that Majority Leader Reid has resorted to backroom deal-making in order to gather the necessary 60 votes on legislation that remains unpopular with the American people.

Media reports suggest that Vermont, Nebraska and Massachusetts may get exemptions that subsidize the expansion of Medicaid, while Florida, Pennsylvania and New York will be exempted from major cuts to Medicare Advantage. As most states (including West Virginia) shell out millions in tax dollars to fund new Medicaid recipients and seniors across the country see their Medicare Advantage benefits dry up, these exempted states will be shielded from the impacts of the Senate bill.

"These exemptions strike me as blatant admission by Democratic leadership that major components of this bill are a bad deal for states and a bad deal for seniors," said Capito. "What should have been an open process of give and take appears to have degenerated into a series of sweetheart deals for some states that leave the rest of us to pick up the tab."

Earlier this year, Capito wrote to the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources regarding the budgetary impact of expanding Medicaid. In a letter to the secretary, Capito noted that - after a short-term grace period - states would have to pick up a significantly larger share of the Medicaid burden, which could mean new taxes or more budget cuts.

She has also raised concerns about severe cuts to Medicare which threatens to alter coverage for thousands of West Virginia seniors.

"On top of $56 billion in cuts to home health care and $143 billion in across the board cuts to Medicare providers, by gutting Medicare Advantage the Speaker's bill blatantly breaks the President's promise that if you like your current plan you can keep it," Capito said in November after the House passed their version of the health care bill.


The Price of “Reform”
Some States Get Special Treatment Under Democrats’ Bill – But Not West Virginia

Politico: Reid Holds Caucus Together One Vote at a Time: “Reid was able to hold his caucus together, in part, by writing state-specific provisions that won over senators, one vote at a time. Nebraska, Vermont and Massachusetts scored $1.2 billion in special Medicaid assistance. Nelson got something for Nebraska the other states didn’t — a permanent exemption from increased state costs for new patients that come into Medicaid through the plan. Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah and Wyoming secured higher federal reimbursement rates for doctors and hospitals that serve Medicare patients. Senior citizens in Florida, Pennsylvania and New York will see their Medicare Advantage benefits protected at a time when the program will be trimmed nationwide.” (Politico, December 21, 2009)

Wall Street Journal: Change Nobody Believes In: “…Others got hush money, namely Nebraska's Ben Nelson. Even liberal Governors have been howling for months about ObamaCare's unfunded spending mandates: Other budget priorities like education will be crowded out when about 21% of the U.S. population is on Medicaid, the joint state-federal program intended for the poor. Nebraska Governor Dave Heineman calculates that ObamaCare will result in $2.5 billion in new costs for his state that "will be passed on to citizens through direct or indirect taxes and fees," as he put it in a letter to his state's junior Senator. So in addition to abortion restrictions, Mr. Nelson won the concession that Congress will pay for 100% of Nebraska Medicaid expansions into perpetuity. His capitulation ought to cost him his political career, but more to the point, what about the other states that don't have a Senator who's the 60th vote for ObamaCare? (WSJ Editorial, December 21, 2009)

Washington Post: ‘Cash for Cloture:’ “Indeed, the proliferation of deals has outpaced the ability of Capitol Hill cynics to name them. Gator Aid: Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) inserted a grandfather clause that would allow Floridians to preserve their pricey Medicare Advantage program. Handout Montana: Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) secured Medicare coverage for anybody exposed to asbestos -- as long as they worked in a mine in Libby, Mont. Iowa Pork and Omaha Prime Cuts: Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) won more Medicare money for low-volume hospitals of the sort commonly found in Iowa, while Nebraska's Nelson won a "carve out" provision that would reduce fees for Mutual of Omaha and other Nebraska insurers.” (Washington Post, Dana Milbank Column, December 22, 2009)

Friday, December 18, 2009

Yes West Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus

Hopefully this lack of movement indicates that the faux climate change movement is about to collapse. The timely journalistic coup that exposed global warming's biggest advocates as cunning manipulators of public opinion and enemies of scientific inquiry probably saved the day.

We should continue to find technologies that reduce pollution, but we do not need chicken little scare tactics to keep moving forward towards cleaner use of all energy sources.



Event: Winter Storm Warning









Target Area: Hampshire Morgan Berkeley Jefferson Pendleton Hardy Western Mineral Eastern Mineral

A Crowded Field and Digging a Deeper Hole

Complicated or refreshing? When you look at the field of candidates contending for the GOP nomination in the First Congressional District, either one of these words could come to mind. Yes there is currently a bewildering array of contenders, some strong, some with more of an outsiders' chance. They agree on many basic ideas, but differ in important ways. Over the next few months we will try to help sort out the differences between the candidates.

How is this refreshing? The people have come out and let it be known that Congress as currently constituted has performed unacceptably. As usual they show a complete disconnect from the people, but in the past few years they have also worked very hard to drive our country into decline. Massive debts destroy the financial reputation that we worked so hard to create dating back to Alexander Hamilton. The world has lost faith in our ability to lead the economy and make sound decisions. Some see an opportunity to use the current crisis to tweak the eagle's tail and cut us down a peg. No doubt our own left wing in theis country loves to see the United States shorn of its traditional dominance. But is this healthy for the world at large?

Who to blame? Obama has done a lot of damage, but the current majority party has seen nothing but decline since they took office in 2007. When Obama blames current problems on conditions created before he took office, he is careful to forget the votes and policies of a Democratic Congress.

Obviously the problem is the Democratic Party's massive lurch to the left. Mollohan has to march in step to ultra left winger Nancy Pelosi and her desire to destroy gun rights, coal mining, publicly fund abortions, raise the debt sky high, and do a lot of other things that will harm our nation and its people. We realize that a vote for Alan Mollohan os a vote for Nancy Pelosi and her disastrous record. Regradless of the good services he has done for individuals seeking help from his office, he is supporting the majority party in Congress whose almost every move has harmed West Virginia.

Most recently Congress raised the debt ceiling to allow yet another so-called stimulus package through by the barest of majorities. Alan Mollohan and Nick Joe Rahall voted to waste more money. Shelley Moore Capito voted against it, remembering much of the stimulus money spent last time went to groups like ACORN.

2010 cannot come soon enough. Mollohan's weakness is evident in his paltry fundraising and the enthusiasm of an army of candidates expecting to unseat him. Republicans in the First District need to band together this summer and fall and send Alan Mollohan and the Dmeocratic Congress into retirement.

Thursday, December 17, 2009










Capito Votes Against Democrats’ Year-End Spending Spree

House Leaders Rush to Spend Even More as 2009 Session Comes to Close

WASHINGTON – With the House of Representatives finishing up the year today with appropriations measures and a hike in the debt limit, Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., didn’t mince words when discussing her views on the Democrat’s year-end agenda.

“This is nothing but more of the same: more spending, more taxes and little to show for it,” said the 2nd District congresswoman.

“My colleagues on the other side of the aisle are pushing an agenda with more spending on programs that can’t even spend what they have now. And they’re hiking the nation’s debt limit to $12.4 trillion so they can borrow the money they need to do it. It’s irresponsible, it’s ill-conceived and it’s unlikely to meet with any more success than what we’ve seen with the first stimulus package.

Capito noted the troubling state of the job market and expressed skepticism that the Democrat’s latest “jobs” bill would realistically address it. She also raised objections to Democratic efforts to raid TARP funds that were originally pegged to help pay down the debt.

“Don’t be misled, this is not a ‘jobs’ bill,” she said. “Last time I checked, after passing a $787 billion stimulus package, the national unemployment rate is still in double digits and West Virginia’s unemployment rate is on the rise.”

“Instead of repeating the mistakes of the original stimulus so my colleagues can feign concern on jobs, let’s offer real relief for small business owners and put a stop to the troubling anti-growth policies that continue to stem from this congress.”

Tea Party Movement Now More Popular Than Either Political Party

This morning's news broadcast out of Washington made an interesting statement. For a few weeks now polls showed that the Tea Party movement outstripped the Republican Party in popularity. This morning the Democrats now find themselves looking up at the Tea Party in terms of support numbers.

Liberal media types write with glee about the demise of the Republican Party and th epotential for splintering going into the election of 2010. That being said, the GOP has substantially outraised the Democratic Party since Obama took office.

Left wing control of the government sparked outrage over the waste of money and time. Frustrated protesters have seen the Republican Party as stumbling along too slowly and getting behind the curve on important issues. All too often they accuse Republicans of differing viewpoints of not being real conservatives. The media also fails to realize that committed Republicans have held Tea Party rallies.

The problems within the GOP and conservative movement overall are relatively picayune. Libertarians and conservatives in some areas have problems with party leadership, usually more on procedural than ideological grounds. Democrats are splitting on ideological issues. Conservative Democrats fear the wrath of constituents and left wing leaders. Some have courageously split, others try to steer the rapids in the middle of the river.

Republicans need a leader to emerge as Reagan did in the 1970s. From 1976 to 1980 the GOP was split by ideological differences. "Moderates" such as Nelson Rockefeller battled Goldwater inspired small government conservatives such as Ronald Reagan. Reagan understood the anger he shared with the American people, but channeled it into a specific vision of a brighter future rather than simply dislike of Jimmy Carter.

Where will that leader come from? The same model should succeed in 2012 as in 1980. Whoever it is needs to step forth and help inspire party loyalists and those that are simply mad as hell at the movement away from true American values.

Troops In Afghanistan Face More Restrictions Than Your County Sheriff

This article is almost a month old, but worthy of mention for anyone with loved ones in Afghanistan, as my family has.

It speaks for itself but fails to point out an important salient fact. Your county sheriff, or any other law enforcement officer in the US, has more latitude in fighting crime than Army and Marine officers have in fighting terrorism.

I understand the problems involved in counterinsurgency from an academic standpoint, having researched and delivered papers on the subject. There must be an understanding of the population's role. However you must make the population feel secure to get them on your side. These rules of engagement would seem to weaken the US military's ability to offer that kind of security.

Guest Commentary: And Another Thing....

Hey y'all. Fatcat here again, Obama and the Commie left's favorite whipping boy.

Yesterday we talked about how Obama likes to rip on fat cats to score political points. A little mouse told me, before I ate him, that Obama was not literally talking about cats. Apparently that is a term they use for businessmen and heads of banks and whatnot. Now it all makes sense! Or does it?
Okay let me try and make sense of all this. You (the government) offer banks loans to bail them out because they made dumb decisions that, for the most part you had either been strongly encouraging them or forcing them to make. Of course some of them compounded that by making a lot of stupid decisions all by themselves. These decisions, made at your behest, screwed up the world's financial system. Now you give them bailout money instead of letting them go down the drain, probably because if you did not give them the money, they would reveal just how big a role that you (the government again) helped to screw everything up.

So they make decisions you don't like and now you want to force them to, once again, abide by the political needs of the government instead of the needs of who they are really accountable to, customers and shareholders.

Meanwhile the executive branch and the army of czars have not figured out one idea that actually worked because, surprise, there is no one there that has the ear of the president who has any knowledge of how a free market system actually works!

Take some advice from a real fat cat. Get your hands off the banks, General Motors, etc. Stop buying the support of NBC through cap and trade intercourse with their parent company, General Electric. Let companies rise and fall by their own merits. The free market system works if you let it. Half a$$#d socialism only creates an economy that works at a mediocre level because no one is sure what political whim will next sweep through the system.

If anyone out there wants to blame fat cats, don't blame capitalism and don't blame me. neither one of us had anything to do with what is going on now. We have met our economic enemy and once again it's the flipping government. Oh and guess what. The inflation that is coming? That's the government's fault too! It spends too much!

Fat cat signing off!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Why Is This Man Still In the Executive Branch?

Warning (seriously) the following link has graphic and fairly disgusting material within that relates promotion of bizarre sexual practices to young boys and girls with the "Safe Schools Czar" appointed by Obama

Where does Barack Obama find people like Kevin Jennings? Seriously! It is almost as if he looked for the scuzziest and nastiest people on Earth to serve as his top advisors. And this guy has authority over federal school policy!!!!

If you read the link, you know that Jennings is a man who should never be allowed within a thousand yards of a school, much less serve as an educational advisor to the president. These conventions should be as carefully attended by FBI agents as pro Klan churches were during the civil rights movement. After all, they promote child molestation.

This is an issue that is kind of scary. This guy has written books proudly proclaiming that he encouraged young schoolage boys to have sex with older men in bus stations, but only if they wore a condom. To me if it walks like a duck, acts like a duck, quacks like a duck, a duck it most likely is. If this guy thinks molesting teenage boys is A-OK and is brazen enough to write a book about promoting it (isn't THAT a crime?), I doubt it would take much digging to find a serious felony in his past.

A conservative and a golf star cheat on their wives and it is big news. Obama appoints a guy that promotes child molestation and no one utters a peep. Am I missing something?

The thought that a child molestor currently serves as Obama's top advisor on education is chilling. No one has ever said he actually molested a boy, but he has repeatedly stated that there is nothing wrong with it. And that is horrifying enough.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Irony, Global Warming Style . . .,1518,663858,00.html

If they were not so dangerous, this would be hysterical.

Guest Commentary: A Response to Barack Obama

Hi America. I'm mad as H ee double hockey sticks and I am not going to take it anymore!

Every darned time some liberal or left wing pinko Commie gets a bee in his bonnet about the business cycle or banks or just rich people in general, they attack me. Why? What do they have against me? What you see right here is what you get. I'm not rich. I'm sleeping on a #$!%&!% pizza box for crying out loud. Sometimes I stretch out in the driveway too. It's not like I spend twenty hours a day worrying about the profitability of a multibillion dollar corporation or somwething like that.

Yeah I know what you are saying. You may spend 23 and 1/2 hours a day asleep somewhere and the rest eating, a lot like many of the folks who receive redistribution of wealth, but are all fat cats like you? Of course not. Some fat cats knock $#!& off the counter and break it because they are unaware of their girth. Others do their business in the clean laundry basket instead of in the litter box. My point is that we may all be fat cats, but most of us know how to behave. Liberals and lefties love to assign stereotypes that are not accurate, yet elicit an emotional response (yes I said elicit, you got a problem with that? I may have no opposable digits, but I ain't dumb.) Of course when conservatives suggest that we may want to keep our eyes on the guy rocking back and forth in the airport whispering Allah Akhbar over and over, wearing a trenchcoat in summer over a suspicious bulge in his stomach, they scream "profiling! stereotype!" But when they want to stick all us decent fat cats in the same boat as the one that poops on your foot while you are asleep in bed that is apparently perfectly alright.

So Obama, you go on bashing fat cats on your weekly radio speech that is carried on no radio station I ever heard of, but MSNBC seems to have playing constantly. I'll live my life. Just quit profiling me and my friends. Don't dump the good in with the bad just to get an emotional political response. That's irresponsible. Even a cat knows that.

Medical Marijuana

This is another one of those posts that comes with a caveat of "opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect the opinions of everyone at Potomac Highlands Conservative, etc. etc. etc."

However, with that caveat in mind, the time has come to consider the positives of introducing some form of marijauna for medical use.

In 2003 almost five million people reported using opiate pain medication for "non medical purposes" according to a National Institute in Drug Addiction study. (In comparison, experts believe that two million people have a cocaine addiction.) Now this number has certainly A) risen sharply in the past six years and B) was underreported to begin with because a lot of people do not like admitting to this kind of behavior. Opiates include darvocet, percocet, oxycontin and other pills derived from opium.

For anyone, opium based drugs are highly physically addictive. All too many people have a predisposition towards addiction that makes them highly vulnerable to the "high" created by these medications. Mix a vulnerable person, physically or emotionally, with a highly concentrated opiate such as oxycontin and you are sure to get an addict nearly every time.

Enter marijuana. As a medication or social drug, marijuana has a much lower physical addiction rate. Certainly the high can create emotional dependence in many cases, but that is much easier to break than the physical dependence created by opiates. Marijuana when properly used has almost the same pain killing effect as most of the opiate drugs. Getting a similar benefit with a much lower rate of desperate addiction is a strong argument in favor of legalizing marijuana for medical use. As far as abuse is concerned, misuse and addiction to opiates is rampant already. Any measure that could stem the tide of normal people growing addicted in the course of taking a legitimate prescription is a bonus for society.

Medical marijuana gives us a potential alternative to the highly addictive opiates, but the problem does not stop there. We need to reign in some of these "pain clinics" that have as much concern for their patients as Mexican drug cartels do for their customers. Doctors that knowingly hand out pills to addicts for no real medical purpose at all need to be treated in the same manner as crack or meth dealers. Their degrees and nice clothes do not make them any better than any other drug dealer. Some highly addictive drugs need to be used only in cases of terminal illness or the most severe and debilitating conditions, the kind of real pain problems that would preclude a normal life anyway.

Medical marijuana is only part of the solution to runaway pain pill addiction in this country, but it is an important step towards keeping good people from sliding down that path in the first place.


One last thing. Those of you that support this and have rallies and meetings that end up on TV, here is a public relations hint. Get rid of the long hair and beards. Wear a button down shirt, maybe even a tie. It does not help the cause of medical marijuana to have on television the Jerry Garcia look alike contest. Now I used to have a lot of friends that looked like this, maybe still do. However, seeing these people wandering around in the background of TV coverage does not advance the movement. Not trying to be mean or discriminatory, but just take it as food for thought.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

It's About Time

It is about that time again. Campaign season.

Some people welcome it. Some shrink in horror. Many don't notice any difference at all until they see signs up at every road corner. Nevertheless it is almost upon us.

People involved in politics get jaded because the parties tell us every election year could be the most important ever. This year is the one that demands your time, attention, and money more than any other. We hear that every year, but this year it is true.

We are not debating abortion, gay marriage, high or low taxes, school textbooks, or other such issues this time. These definitely require attention, but they remain secondary to the question of 2010 and then 2012 after it.

This question affects our entire nation and permeates elections at every level. We must ask ourselves as we go vote what kind of nation we want. Do we want a country with a government putting its hands into every aspect of our lives, stealing the rewards of the hard working to buy the votes of the less fortunate, allowing neither to thrive? Do we want a government dominated by the United Nations, its members seeking to force America to give up competitive advantages and bankrupt itself and its people? Some in the world want to see us weakened and chastened, many of those work in the executive and legislative branches of our own government.

Most of us want a strong, prosperous, and secure America. To get that back, we must vote for people that support American values. Beyond that we cannot have the anti-socialist vote split. We must come together. Republican candidates have to clearly oppose the Obama/Pelosi plans and libertarians need to support them.

We as a people and a party must have a clear message that our nation and the wider world needs to hear. The American people are not prepared to follow Barack Obama into the dying of our light. We will vote to protect our freedom and resist tyranny. The Democratic Party leadership and the world need to understand that once and for all.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Apologizing For America Leads Not to Peace, But to War

Over a hundred years ago, President Theodore Roosevelt sent the United States Atlantic Fleet under Admiral George Dewey into the Caribbean. He feared that the presence of a debt collecting European fleet off the coast of Venezuela might destabilize the entire region and produce dire consequences for America. Now it is Venezuela that has emerged as the threat.

In the past several months, Venezuelan strongman Hugo Chavez has been on a shopping spree. He bought over $2 billion worth of weapons from Russia. Certainly these arms are inferior to American materials, but his immediate target is not our country, but likely his neighbor Colombia. By building his military strength, Chavez intends to transform his country into a regional power that will challenge American political and ideological influence. Russia has been only too happy to extend Chavez almost unlimited credit to purchase these materials.

In the past few days, Chavez has massed tanks on the border of Colombia and almost promised war with our most solid ally in the region. He threatens to launch an invasion to back the faltering left wing guerilla/bandit movement known as FARC.

Where is the United States? This is an example of the evil reaped by Obama's Apology Tour. Tens of thousands will die if Venezuela invades Colombia. If this happens, the blame lies partially at the feet of the White House. Obama created a perception of weakness and Chavez intends to exploit it. He either wants Obama to broker a Munich type deal for "peace in our time" or will invade to show the world that America is impotent against him.

Obama needs to deploy the United States Navy to the shores of Venezuela immediately. We also need to publicly move strategic bombers to southern US bases. This actually in military terms makes no difference, but it does rattle the sabre. We need commit no ground troops, but we can demolish Venezuelan military assets from the air with little threat to our own personnel. This will do a great deal to restore our credibility in the world as a power that will use strength to enforce peace. It also mimics John F. Kennedy's successful moves in forcing missiles out of Cuba without an actual fight in the early 1960s. If we make Chavez understand that his behavior is intolerable, he will back down. Chavez is a classic bully. Man up and face him and he will back down.

If not, we are seeing the emergence of the next Hitler right here near our shores. Chavez can destabilize much of Latin America if we do not act to protect Colombia. American weakness will only encourage weak nations in the region to defect to his side for their own protection.
Theodore Roosevelt loved the African phrase "Speak softly and carry a big stick." The current president of African extraction has spoken loudly about how much he dislikes his country's stand for freedom. Now he must use the "big stick" or he will allow a very serious problem to emerge.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Come to Crazy Nancy's! She Has a Deal For You!

Nancy Pelosi said "we would do almost anything to pass healthcare" before Christmas.

What exactly does that mean? Well Crazy Nancy will throw in some perks for seniors, leave out the "Cadillac health plan tax" for union workers. She'll do almost anything because she WANTS TO MAKE A DEAL TODAY!

That is, except for meaningful tort reform, interstate portability, small business pools, or anything else that smacks of free market reform or avoiding an eventual government takeover.

Crazy Nancy Pelosi, other than offering something good for America, is willing to deal today!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

A Chilling Look At the Mindset of an Abortion Advocate

In yesterday's Charleston Gazette, WV Free director Margaret Chapman Pomponio leads her commentary with the following:
I work for a reproductive justice organization. That means that for almost 10 years, I’ve been advocating for West Virginia families to improve education on reproductive decisions, increase access to affordable birth control, and protect personal decision-making, including decisions about whether or when to have a child. This means that we at WV FREE support access to abortion care because it’s what women sometimes need as part of their basic health care.

This is part of a plea on behalf of including abortion services into any government run health care operation. Think of what she says for a second, though. She claims that abortion is part of "their basic health care!" (I added the ! of course.)

In what universe is the killing of a child, along with the harsh psychological consequnces suffered by many of the mothers, on a par with getting a broken bone set or getting antibiotics for an infection? That is what most people consider "basic health care."

They would love for us to look at abortion as routine, something between getting a splint for a broken thumb and removing an appendix. We need to continue to fight this attitude on every level and remind people of what abortion really is.

It's not a "fetus," but a living and breathing child of God.

It's not a "procedure," but the vacuuming away of a viable human life, piece by painful piece.

And women don't "need" it except in rare, life threatening cases. The vast majority of mothers made a conscious choice to engage in behavior that created the child. If they made the choice to take that action, then they have the responsibility to live with the consequences of those actions regardless of age or circumstances. That responsibility runs at the very least to bringing it to term and delivering it alive. The law says that after that, you can drop it off anonymously at certain prescribed spots and never deal with the child again. At least the child is alive and the mother is not traumatized by murdering her baby inside of her. Our law and society have created scenarios where all the mother has to do, if she is completely unfit or unable to take care of the baby, is let it live and we take care of the rest. That baby could cure cancer, create a unified field theory, or compose wonderful music. Unfortunately the law also gives her the option to murder as well so we might never get the benefits of those unknowable lives. I agree completely with providing birth control to the poor as well as education on how and when to use it. Killing a child when one does not have to goes way beyond the pale of acceptable behavior.
I saw my first child born at 19 and despite all the trouble and sacrifice, would never, ever wish away one second of her existence to make my life more convenient, or to extend my college "fun time."

At some point, we will all have to reckon in some way with the horror of what our law has allowed to happen for almost four decades now.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Capito Reacts to Idling of Clay County Mine

Ambiguity from EPA, Courts Leaves Miners in the Lurch

WASHINGTON – In light of reports that as many as 300 employees may face layoffs at a Clay County coal mine, Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., released the following statement:

“Today’s news is a sobering reminder that continued uncertainty surrounding mine permits poses a serious threat to jobs across our state. We’re talking about real families now forced to ponder the future of their jobs and their livelihood. These are not abstract consequences in some far away land; these are our friends and neighbors. These are hard-working West Virginians.

“This mine provides the vast majority of Clay County’s tax-base and is its largest employer, making the prospect of Fola shutting down troubling at best and economically devastating at worst.

“Though today’s sad news stems from action in our courts, we know that the practical differences between delays at the hand of the courts or at the hands of the EPA are few and far between. While some would have us believe that the EPA and government regulators are simply ‘doing their job,’ it is becoming quite clear that the combined impact of litigation and regulatory uncertainty poses a severe threat to the economic climate of our state.

“As the President proposes his new so-called ‘jobs bill’ and heads off to Copenhagen to tout the EPA’s new ruling on carbon, perhaps he should consider the economic impact his policies will reap in the hills of Appalachia.”

Capito on the Federal Response to the Mortgage Crisis

Congresswoman’s Opening Statement to Financial Services Committee Hearing

WASHINGTON – Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, the ranking Republican on the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Housing and Community and Opportunity, made the following opening statement at this morning’s full committee hearing to discuss the status of federal efforts to address the mortgage crisis:

“I would like to thank Chairman Frank for holding this hearing this morning. As the Chairman is well aware, we had a similar hearing in the Housing and Community Opportunity Subcommittee in September of this year on the very issue of tracking progress with the Administration’s foreclosure mitigation programs. Introduced in early 2009, the Making Home Affordable program was rolled out with the promise of assisting 7 to 9 million troubled borrowers, yet the program has thus far assisted only a small fraction of this estimate.

“While the Administration’s plan has been somewhat more successful than the troubled Hope for Homeowners program, I have significant concerns with the over-estimation of the populations served by these programs. Although there are many Americans who are struggling to pay their mortgages, it has become clear that these programs simply may not be capable of handling the volume of borrowers, nor is it realistic to suggest that every struggling borrower will be able to benefit from a modification.

“Furthermore, there should not be a push to achieve these targets at the expense of ensuring that modifications are being processed in a manner that ensures the lender has as complete a picture of the borrower’s financial situation as possible. To this end, I was very troubled to learn that some modifications are being performed with minimal documentation. After all, it was this very practice of no or low documentation that helped create the housing crisis we face today. We should not be in the business of perpetuating this practice.

“According to the Treasury Department, 375,000 trial modifications are set to convert to a permanent modification by the end of the year. However, J.P. Morgan Chase recently disclosed that in November close to twenty five percent of their trial modifications failed to make the first payment, and nearly fifty percent of borrowers failed to make all three payments. Furthermore, the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston cites that thirty to forty-five percent of borrowers who receive modifications end up in default within six months. This raises significant concerns about the ability of these programs to meet the long-term expectations outlined earlier this year.

“These challenges are greatly compounded by a shift in the root causes of foreclosures. With the downturn in the economy, we are now facing more traditional causes of foreclosure, namely the loss of a job. As these programs progress, we must have a realistic understanding of their capability and we have an obligation to taxpayers to focus our efforts first and foremost on families who truly need assistance the most.

“I look forward to hearing from our witnesses this morning and thank the Chairman for holding this important hearing.”

Obama Urged to Violate Constitution

The United Nations Climate Fraud Conference in Copenhagen has an understated theme that might cause havoc in the United States. It wants Barack Obama to use his executive powers to sidestep the Constitution and Congress and impose UN generated emissions regulations.

Senator Jim Webb (D) VA issued Obama a harsh rebuke yesterday, warning him to not circumvent the US Senate in imposing international standards on the United States. Only a treaty ratified by the Senate can do this according to the Constitution.

Webb's public warning exposes the fear and anger felt by Senators at this possible attack on their Constitutional powers. Obama already has ignored the Senate in his appointment of over fifty czars with regulatory powers. What is to stop him from doing the same to curry the love of Europe.

This issue is not about the climate. No raw scientific data backs up global warming theories. Europe adopted these harsh and costly rules that prevent their manufacturing from competing effectively with the US. They want us to voluntarily harm our own competitive abilities in the name of a disgraced theory. Meanwhile China, India, and Russia will not face the same restrictions. Obama himself said that climate regulation will make all of our electric bills "skyrocket."

This is a recipe for electoral disaster for the Democrats and long term economic disaster for the rest of us.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Borrowers Get Time for Proper Review of Documents in Bean-Capito Mortgage Rights Bill

Full mortgage documents would be available days in advance

WASHINGTON – Homebuyers would get three full days to review their complete mortgage documents before signing them at closing under a bipartisan proposal from Congresswomen Melissa Bean, D-Ill., and Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va.

“Buying a home is one of the most important financial investments a family will ever make,” said Capito, the ranking Republican on the Financial Services Subcommittee on Housing and Community Opportunity. “And with a decision of this magnitude, consumers deserve the time necessary to fully review their closing documents. By offering consumers time for proper review, we’re providing the transparency and information necessary for making sound financial decisions. I’m proud to join Melissa Bean in offering this bill and I look forward to our work together to see this legislation enacted.”

Both Bean and Capito noted the importance of ensuring that consumers have an adequate opportunity to educate themselves about the terms and components of their mortgage documents prior to closing.

“The financial crisis was touched off by an explosion in sub-prime loans, many of which were confusing to borrowers who didn’t understand the terms and wound up in loans they couldn’t afford,” Bean said. “When making the biggest single investment of their life, homebuyers deserve the time to fully inspect the details of the loan and ask questions about just what they’re committing to. This measure is part of the broad reforms to Wall Street regulation that I’ve been advocating for all year.”

Under current law, borrowers often do not see the final terms of their home purchase until they reach the closing. At the closing table, borrowers are confronted with a myriad of complex forms that are not easily comprehensible, even to industry professionals. In addition, borrowers often feel rushed during the settlement process and are unable to intelligently ask questions about the meaning of certain disclosures and the costs that they are incurring in connection with the transaction.

While borrowers do have the right to request and review a draft HUD-1 Settlement Statement one business day in advance to closing, many borrowers are unaware of that right, and there is no legal requirement that the HUD-1 be complete.

To be introduced this week, the Borrowers Right to Inspect Closing Documents Act requires the lender and the settlement agent to provide closing documents three business days in advance to review. Borrowers would get a complete and finalized HUD-I Settlement Statement, promissory note, mortgage, and Final Truth-in-Lending Act disclosure.

USS West Virginia (BB-48) December 7th, 1941

On Sunday, 7 December 1941, West Virginia lay moored outboard of Tennessee at berth F-6 with 40 ft (12 m) of water beneath her keel. Shortly before 0800, Japanese planes, flying from a six-carrier task force, commenced a well-planned attack on Pearl Harbor. Several 18 in (460 mm) aerial torpedoes impacted the port side of West Virginia. One torpedo hit the steering gear and knocked off the rudder. At least three struck below the armor belt, and one or more struck the armor belt requiring replacement of seven armor plates. One or possibly two torpedoes entered the ship through holes made by the first torpedoes while the ship was listing and exploded on the armored second deck. Recent evidence indicates that at least one of the hits may have come from a midget submarine. Photographic analysis performed by the United States Naval Institute in 1999 may indicate that one Japanese midget submarine managed to enter the harbor and fired a torpedo into West Virginia. The final disposition of this submarine is unknown.

West Virginia was also hit by two bombs made from 16 in (410 mm) armor-piercing shells fitted with fins. The first bomb hit the foretop, penetrated the superstructure deck, and was found unexploded in the debris on the second deck. The second bomb hit further aft, wrecking one Vought OS2U Kingfisher floatplane atop the "high" catapult on Turret III and pitching the second one on her top on the main deck below. The projectile penetrated the 4 in (100 mm) turret roof, wrecking one gun in the turret itself. Although the bomb was another dud, burning gasoline from the damaged aircraft caused some damage. West Virginia was then seriously damaged by being engulfed in an oil fire started by Arizona and sustained for 30 hours by fuel leaking from both ships.

The torpedoes caused two large holes extending from Frames 43 to 52 and from Frames 62 to 97. Prompt action by Lieutenant Claude V. Ricketts (Claude V. Ricketts later had a ship named after him, the USS Claude V. Ricketts (DDG-5), formerly the USS Biddle), the assistant fire control officer who had some knowledge of damage control techniques, saved the ship from the fate that befell Oklahoma moored ahead. Oklahoma also took several torpedo hits that, in her case, flooded the ship and caused her to capsize.

Instances of heroic conduct onboard the heavily damaged battleship proliferated in the heat of battle. The ship's commanding officer, Captain Mervyn S. Bennion, arrived on his bridge early in the battle, only to be struck down by a bomb fragment hurled in his direction when a 16 in (410 mm) bomb hit the center gun in Tennessee's Turret II, spraying that ship's superstructure and West Virginia's with fragments. Bennion, hit in the abdomen, crumpled to the deck, mortally wounded, but clung tenaciously to life until just before the ship was abandoned, involved in the conduct of the ship's defense up to the last moment of his life. For his "conspicuous devotion to duty, extraordinary courage, and complete disregard of his own life", Captain Bennion was awarded the Medal of Honor, posthumously. Doris Miller, a cook, helped carry Captain Bennion to a safer place and then manned an antiaircraft gun despite having no previous experience. He was the first African-American recipient of the Navy Cross.

West Virginia was abandoned, settling to the harbor bottom on an even keel, her fires fought from on board by a party that volunteered to return to the ship after the first abandonment. By the afternoon of the following day, 8 December, the flames had been extinguished. The garbage lighter YG-17 played an important role in assisting those efforts during the Pearl Harbor attack, remaining in position alongside despite the danger posed by exploding ammunition on board the battleship. With a patch over the damaged area of her hull, the battleship was pumped out and ultimately refloated on 17 May 1942 and docked in Drydock Number One on 9 June. This gave the opportunity for a more detailed damage assessment and it became clear that there had been not six, but seven torpedo hits.

During the ensuing repairs, workers located 66 bodies of West Virginia sailors who had been trapped below when the ship sank. Several bodies were found lying on top of steam pipes within the air bubble existing in flooded areas. Three bodies were found in a store room compartment where they had lived on emergency rations and fresh water from a battle station. A calendar found with them indicated they had lived through 23 December. The task confronting the nucleus crew and shipyard workers was a monumental one, so great was the damage on the battleship's port side. Ultimately, however, West Virginia departed Pearl Harbor for the west coast and a complete rebuilding at the Puget Sound Navy Yard at Bremerton, Washington.

A Date Which Will Live in Infamy

As we endeavor to push to a final conclusion our current war against an evil aggression which struck our nation, let us remember the defining milestone moment of the twentieth century for our country. Let us also remember the men who died on this day in 1941, as well as those that sacrificed to bring retribution home to the Empire of Japan. Below is President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's historic address:
Mr. Vice President, Mr. Speaker, Members of the Senate, and of the House of Representatives:
Yesterday, December 7th, 1941 -- a date which will live in infamy -- the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.
The United States was at peace with that nation and, at the solicitation of Japan, was still in conversation with its government and its emperor looking toward the maintenance of peace in the Pacific.
Indeed, one hour after Japanese air squadrons had commenced bombing in the American island of Oahu, the Japanese ambassador to the United States and his colleague delivered to our Secretary of State a formal reply to a recent American message. And while this reply stated that it seemed useless to continue the existing diplomatic negotiations, it contained no threat or hint of war or of armed attack.
It will be recorded that the distance of Hawaii from Japan makes it obvious that the attack was deliberately planned many days or even weeks ago. During the intervening time, the Japanese government has deliberately sought to deceive the United States by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.
The attack yesterday on the Hawaiian islands has caused severe damage to American naval and military forces. I regret to tell you that very many American lives have been lost. In addition, American ships have been reported torpedoed on the high seas between San Francisco and Honolulu.
Yesterday, the Japanese government also launched an attack against Malaya.
Last night, Japanese forces attacked Hong Kong.
Last night, Japanese forces attacked Guam.
Last night, Japanese forces attacked the Philippine Islands.
Last night, the Japanese attacked Wake Island.
And this morning, the Japanese attacked Midway Island.
Japan has, therefore, undertaken a surprise offensive extending throughout the Pacific area. The facts of yesterday and today speak for themselves. The people of the United States have already formed their opinions and well understand the implications to the very life and safety of our nation.
As commander in chief of the Army and Navy, I have directed that all measures be taken for our defense. But always will our whole nation remember the character of the onslaught against us.
No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory.
I believe that I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost, but will make it very certain that this form of treachery shall never again endanger us.
Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory, and our interests are in grave danger.
With confidence in our armed forces, with the unbounding determination of our people, we will gain the inevitable triumph -- so help us God.
I ask that the Congress declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on Sunday, December 7th, 1941, a state of war has existed between the United States and the Japanese empire.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Urgent Weather Message for Eastern Mineral, WV









Friday, December 4, 2009

Climategate: Not a Victimless Crime

As time passes, details trickle instead of flood out about Climategate. We saw for ourselves how global warming skeptics risked denunciation as heretics by the "faithful," forced to confess their sins of non progressivism or face purification by the fire of not getting important grants. We now know that a conspiracy evolved that tried to suppress publication of competing ideas while blocking access to the raw data they themselves relied on for their claims. The University of East Anglia's Climate Research Unit disposed of its raw data rather than provide it to researchers skeptical of global warming. Now we find out that a Competitive Enterprise Institute scholar had to go to the extreme of filing a Freedom of Information Act request for NASA's data. They have fought that request for over two years. When I was a kid, I requested information from NASA for a science project. They replied within six to eight weeks and I did not need to file an FOIA. Last year NASA said that just because the ice caps on Mars melted quickly during the warm season in the same years as Earth and during a period of intense sunspot activity, that doesn't mean anything. Right.
All this reeks of a conspiracy to hide what most of us figured out on our own. Not only is the earth not warming anymore (other researchers say the temperature plateaued and may have started to cool) but no proof exists that mankind has any hand in raising or lowering global temperatures.
However many countries, including now our own, have started basing economic policy on this idea that now has no supporting data that anyone can or will produce. West Virginia's union miners are among the victims of this disastrous policy. Eighty mine permits have now been revoked because of Obama's War on Coal. Coal is evil according to the Left, and it must be stopped at all costs. Never mind that union miners, the backbone of Democratic strength in West Virginia since the New Deal, will be thrown out of work. Never mind that West Virginia's Democratic governor has worked hard to keep the Mountain State above water during the economic crisis now sees his knees cut out from under him. Families are suffering and now the state will not be able to meet the ever increasing demands of federal mandates. West Virginia, like other states, will face collapse if this continues.
West Virginia has been dealt a savage blow by the advocates of a failed theory. Obama's henchmen shut down our mines and tossed our hard working neighbors out of work because of something they cannot even back up scientifically. His administration sold out traditional Democrats and union members in doing so. Climategate's victims need to stand up in 2010 and 2012 and tell us "which side are you on, boy, which side are you on?" Are you on the side of elite left wing ivy league academic frauds who want to keep West Virginia from prospering, or on you on the side of those that want to expand employment opportunities up and down the line in West Virginia and around the country?

Thursday, December 3, 2009

As a Parent I Want to Thank KPMS, Keyser High School, and Mineral County Schools

Thank you Keyser Primary Middle School, Keyser High School, and Mineral County Schools.

This has been a trying week for parents, teachers, administrators, and law enforcement. Four days of bomb threats have disrupted school repeatedly. Government does not always act efficiently or effectively, but in this case, major kudos to all parties involved.

KPMS officials evacuated the school cleanly and effectively to a different safe location every day. When masses of parents arrived to get their children, the principals and staff worked effectively to maintain organization and keep parents informed. I trust that these people know how to keep my child safe in an emergency and that is important to all of us.

The Mineral County response to these exasperating incidents has been professional and very reassuring. Police presence at both schools, mainly the Keyser Police Department and the Mineral County Sheriff's Department, helps to keep the children reassured. They have also done their jobs very effectively in identifying suspects and getting information from them.

As for the crimes themselves, I do not think that the guilty parties understand the gravity of their offenses, although they soon will. Each day that children must be evacuated and police called means thousands of dollars wasted. Classes and learning is disrupted. Students may have to make up the time during Christmas break (although that would not be the best way to handle making up the lost school time with so many planned trips.)
Worse is the effect on younger and mentally challenged children. Smaller kids get easily frightened by these types of things. I especially feel sorry for the autistic children. Breaks in their routine cause extreme panic and fear for them. Wrenching them out of class is a nightmare for teachers and these students.
When caught and found guilty, these children need to be thoroughly punished. Everyone says that now until faces are put to the crimes. Then we find out about their horrible home lives or some other possible mitigating factor. That should probably not be considered in this case. Threatening a school with bombing is not the victimless crime that defense attorneys may eventually try to call it. We lose time and money and have genuinely frightened children.

Something Rotten in the State of Denmark

Horatio: He waxes desperate with imagination.

Marcellus: Let's follow 'tis not fit thus to obey him.

Horatio: Have after-To what issue will this come?

Marcellus: Something is rotten in the state of Denmark

Something indeed. The global warming community meets very soon in Copenhagen to direct the next round of sweeping proposals for change for the United States and other nations. Many hope that Obama will come and lead the fight at home and around the world against man made global warming. However, there is one catch . . . no scientific proof actually exists.

What, you say? Certainly all those scientists citing all those studies couldn't be mistaken, right? It appears that they were not only mistaken, but they were following a very real and dangerous agenda of using false science to mislead the world.

Scientists at the University of East Anglia disposed of raw data cited in their studies showing rapid warming in the last several decades. This formed the basis of most man made global warming assertions, especially their own. They claim that they still have data, only in a "quality controlled" and "homogenized" form. That is funny. When you homogenize milk, you heat it up. Does this mean that they cooked the books on data? Exactly.

Even worse is news from the academic field where most of these scientific battles are fought. We now know that global warming advocates fought to keep skeptical claims from being published in peer review journals. Professor Phil Jones, director of the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia, expressed fears about global warming skeptics using the raw data to undermine global warming theory. Now why would he be afraid if he was so sure? I imagine that is why he dumped the data. It would be the same as if a prosecutor before arguing a big case tossed out all the physical evidence and asked the jury to just trust his word.
One prominent expert even stated that, if necessary, that the rules of publication ought to be changed to prevent the skeptics from getting a fair shot at publication. Imagine if the Indianapolis Colts were about to play a football game and suddenly just before the game, the forward pass was outlawed.

How do we know this? Russian journalists hacked into computers at the University of East Anglia and found the smoking gun. Just as Richard Nixon did not erase or discard incriminating tapes proving his involvement in the Watergate coverup, it somehow did not occur to global warming luminaries to hide the shell game they have been playing with the world for many years now.
Will any American news sources follow the lead of Russia Today and the London Times to follow a story that completely undermines the certainty of stories they themselves wrote for many years assuming this fraud was true? I imagine it will take some time and pressure from Fox and the Wall Street Journal to get the rest of them in line. It may happen after the 2010 elections, if at all.
In the meantime the Environmental Protection Agency still acts on the premise that this fraud exists. GOP legislators need to go to Capitol Hill and to the people armed with this latest left wing anti-capitalist gaffe and stop cap and trade dead in its tracks.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Capito Opening Statement at Financial Services Committee Hearing on FHA Actuarial Report

WASHINGTON – Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., made the following opening statement this afternoon at the House Financial Services Committee hearing with HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan and other witnesses to address the financial soundness of the Federal Housing Administration and the recently released FHA Actuarial Report:

“Mister Chairman, thank you for holding this important hearing this afternoon on the financial health of the Federal Housing Administration. Last month, Ranking Member Bachus and I wrote you about the importance of having this hearing at the full committee level and I thank you for accommodating our request.

On November 6, 2009, we received the annual independent actuarial review of the Federal Housing Administration’s Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund. The Congress had been warned by Housing Commissioner Stevens that this report would find that FHA’s Capital Reserve Account had fallen below the congressionally mandated reserve ratio of 2 percent. Unfortunately, the report found that it had fallen well below this level and now stands at .53 percent.

As we are all well aware, FHA has re-emerged as a major market participant insuring almost 30 percent of home purchases and 20 percent of refinances. FHA has a role to play in our housing market and if it is going to maintain this level of participation we must work together to ensure that the program remains self sustaining and returns to solid financial health.

I am encouraged by many of the steps Secretary Donovan and Commissioner Stevens have taken so far to shore up FHA and there is more to be done. I look forward to a vibrant discussion of whether or not FHA has the resources to upgrade technology and compete for experienced personnel to streamline their operations and improve efficiencies.

Secretary Donovan mentions in his testimony that FHA may be exploring raising premiums for new borrowers. In late 2007, FHA issued regulations to implement a risk-based pricing program. Yet, Congress implemented a moratorium through the HERA legislation which essentially preventing HUD from implementing any risk based pricing through October 31, 2009. Does HUD intend to implement a risk based pricing program once the moratorium expires? If the need to raise premiums on all borrowers is clear, why should we not have FHA price their premiums based on risk?

I would also like to hear more from the Secretary on stories that FHA borrowers are not able to make the first payment. It would be helpful to know the statistics on first-payment default rates. I know that the Secretary has indicated that he will be seeking greater recourse with lenders and I look forward to hearing more details on this proposal.

I want to welcome Secretary Donovan back to our Committee today. The FHA program is an important component of the housing finance market and Congress and HUD must do whatever is necessary to make sure that this program is run in a manner that does not expose the taxpayer to yet another bailout. I look forward to hearing from all our witnesses today on how best to ensure the future viability of the FHA program. Thank you Chairman Frank for holding this hearing and I look forward to hearing from our panels.”

Capito Statement on President Obama’s Afghanistan Address

WASHINGTON – Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., released the following statement this morning in response to President Barack Obama’s address to the nation regarding his administration’s strategy for the ongoing conflict in Afghanistan:

“First and foremost, our men and women in uniform must know that we stand fully behind them and their mission. They‘ve made a commitment to prevent the spread of terrorism and work towards a stable Afghanistan, and it is critical that our government match their level of dedication.

“While any decision to send our service members into harm’s way is a difficult one, it has become increasingly clear that success in Afghanistan demands that our forces have further resources and manpower.

“As this process unfolds, however, it is critical that General McChrystal and his team of commanders have an appropriate opportunity to succeed. We must not be so quick to judge success or failure based on an arbitrary timeline that we draw premature conclusions about the effectiveness of this new strategy.

“As I have said before, our military efforts should be driven by the expertise of our generals on the ground who know the day to day demands of the mission, and not by the political winds of Washington.

“Put simply, I am encouraged by the President’s decision, but I urge him to let the facts on the ground – rather than a politically-driven timetable – guide our policy moving forward.”

A Couple of House of Delegate Races Worth Noting

Another election year will be upon us in a few weeks, which means that we need to start thinking about ways to start supporting candidates who will return government to the people.

Republicans will concentrate a lot of their donations and time on congressional races this year. We have a shot to get back at least one house of Congress and stop the runaway train that is Pelosi brand socialism. However we also need to think closer to home as well. For approximately eight decades the West Virginia State Legislature has been run by the Democrats. That party sees legislative power in the Mountain State as almost its own by divine right. Let's return West Virginia to two party rule.

I want to mention a couple of races that are important for the state GOP and me personally. I know both these people and believe that they will represent their districts and the state well when elected. I am proud to call them personal friends as well.

In the 41st Delegate district, Tommy Phillips will challenge for the seat currently held by the Democrat Samuel Cann. This district encompasses part of Harrison County. Tommy is a young, energetic, and bright man with youth and talent in his corner. He has served as Harrison County Executive Committee chair and has worked hard for the state party as well. If you are a donor interested in state politics, please consider helping out this candidate. He would make an outstanding delegate.

Of course in our own 49th, Bob Schadler is retiring after many years of faithful and hardworking service. I cannot think of anyone better to hold that seat than Gary Howell. Most of you know already that Gary is an aggressive and hard fighting individual with a talent for learning about the kind of legal and policy details that most folks overlook. A lot of people respect Gary's plain talking and blunt approach to tackling the problems faced by this region. His experience in policy research will prove invaluable to all Republican legislators. They currently have to rely upon a Democratic appointee or their own devices when researching law or policy when crafting their bills. Gary will serve as an important part of a state GOP legislative team that will fight to restrain government size, spending, and taxation in West Virginia. Since announcing his run for the House of Delegates, Gary's fundraising has far exceeded expectations very early in the campaign. This shows how serious Mineral County is about keeping this seat out of Democratic hands.

Of course there are many worthy candidates emerging all over the state. We need to support the viable and strong candidates as much as possible so that we can get the Legislature in the hands of a party that knows what West Virginia needs, more jobs and less government.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Private and Public Lives

Watching the Pitt game the other night (and congratulations to Bill Stewart, his staff, and the West Virginia Mountaineers for a tremendous victory), we couldn't help but to notice that every thirty seconds ESPN would feel the need to update its viewers on a mysterious car crash near Orlando.
By now most people know that the driver was legendary golfer Tiger Woods. His SUV careened off of a fire hydrant and hit a tree at 2 AM. Woods claimed that the accident caused injuries that required hospitalization and that his wife broke out the windows of his vehicle to free him. Woods offered to pay for the damage to city property and apologized for the mishap.
Obviously this story doesn't add up. On the other hand, why do we need all the facts here? Woods has no connection to the government and offered to repair the damage done to city property. CNN Hedline News's rabid group of pundits demand answers. Tiger Woods has the guts to stand up and say that his family remains none of their business.
The main loser in this whole scenario, besides the Woods family, is ESPN. Once again this network stooped to the lowest common denominator, even citing a National Enquirer story on their crawler. Yup, the same magazine that constantly has exposes on Obama's gay lovers and used to report incessantly that President Bush had an affair with Condoleeza Rice. ESPN ran out in front of a story that made you feel dirty for even reading about it on the bottom of the screen. It became obvious fairly quickly that we were seeing a domestic and private issue that all parties directly involved just wanted to forget.
Now what will happen? Probably photographers will follow Woods around until he beats one of them down with a golf club, then he looks like the bad guy. Tiger Woods' family life is no business of ours and has no greater impact on society. It is simply a story of gossip. The press wants to pry into their problems for the entertainment of those people who want to see a good and successful man and his family knocked down a peg.

Monday, November 30, 2009

And This Is What Thanksgiving Is All About

Hat tip to Pastor William Linhart, Calvary United Methodist Church. This shows the mindset of our Founding Fathers in the Continental Congress in the time of their most desperate fears. As our country enters increasingly troubled times, we ought to be mindful of these words.

O Lord our Heavenly Father, high and mighty King of kings, and Lord of lords, who dost from thy throne behold all the dwellers on earth and reignest with power supreme and uncontrolled over all the Kingdoms, Empires and Governments; look down in mercy, we beseech Thee, on these our American States, who have fled to Thee from the rod of the oppressor and thrown themselves on Thy gracious protection, desiring to be henceforth dependent only on Thee. To Thee have they appealed for the righteousness of their cause; to Thee do they now look up for that countenance and support, which Thou alone canst give. Take them, therefore, Heavenly Father, under Thy nurturing care; give them wisdom in Council and valor in the field; defeat the malicious designs of our cruel adversaries; convince them of the unrighteousness of their Cause and if they persist in their sanguinary purposes, of own unerring justice, sounding in their hearts, constrain them to drop the weapons of war from their unnerved hands in the day of battle!

Be Thou present, O God of wisdom, and direct the councils of this honorable assembly; enable them to settle things on the best and surest foundation. That the scene of blood may be speedily closed; that order, harmony and peace may be effectually restored, and truth and justice, religion and piety, prevail and flourish amongst the people. Preserve the health of their bodies and vigor of their minds; shower down on them and the millions they here represent, such temporal blessings as Thou seest expedient for them in this world and crown them with everlasting glory in the world to come. All this we ask in the name and through the merits of Jesus Christ, Thy Son and our Savior.


Reverend Jacob Duché
Rector of Christ Church of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
September 7, 1774, 9 o’clock a.m.