Friday, December 31, 2010

The Constitution Confuses Him Because "It Was Written Over a Hundred Years Ago."

This isn't a high school student. It's Washington Post staffer and blogger Ezra Klein. He said that the Constiution should have no binding power and that it is confusing because it was written over a hundred years ago.

Other things that might confuse Mr. Klein are:

A Christmas Carol, published in December 1843

A certain document that starts "When in the course of human events . . ." written in the summer of 1776

Any European based fairy tales, like "Jack and the Beanstalk." They had their origins in the Middle Ages, so they must be, like, waaaayy confusing.

Proverbs 22

This one might be well over Mr. Klein's head, being a liberal and all. Also, Cicero said it over 2,000 years ago. "Cannot people realize how large an income is thrift?"

"A Bill of Rights is what the people are entitled to against every government, and what no just government should refuse, or rest on inference." Thomas Jefferson said this over two hundred years ago, so it must be twice as confusing to Mr. Klein. Does he know that Mr. Jefferson founded the Democratic Party? The background of that is probably too much for Klein to comprehend, it happened in the 1790s.

“You can educate a fool, but you cannot make him think” This comes from the Talmud, a collection of Jewish legal thinking from over 1500 years ago. That makes it fifteen times more confusing than the Constitution. It also sums up left wingers to a T.

And most confusing of all, a link to that mysterious and unknowable document, the Constitution. It's filled with such confusing phrases as "All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives." That is the one that the almighty Obama himself seems to have a lot of trouble comprehending. I think the word "herein" is where Klein is having trouble.

In any event, the Constitution lives so long as we uneducated heathen know it, live it, and defend it when necessary. I think it is amazing that a Keyser High School political science class is poised to win a state title based on their knowledge of not only the Constitution, but also important influences like John Locke and the Magna Carta. Maybe Ezra Klein should take AP Government at Keyser High and learn a little something.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Medieval England Wanted Their People Armed, Why Not Modern Liberals and Leftists?

Assize of Arms
1. Let every holder of a knight's fee have a hauberk, a helmet, a shield and a lance. And let every knight have as many hauberks, helmets, shields and lances, as he has knight's fees in his demise.

2. Also, let every free layman, who holds chattals or rent to the value of 16 marks, have hauberk, a helmet, a shield, and a lance. Also, let every free layman who holds chattals or rent worth 10 marks have an aubergel and a headpiece of iron and a lance....

4. Moreover, let each and every one of them swear before the feast of St. Hilary he will possess these arms and will bear allegiance to the lord king, Henry, namely the son of empress Maud, and that he will bear these arms in his service according to his order and in allegiance to the lord king and his realm..."

From Webster's Online Dictionary, since the Assize of Arms of 1252 is nowhere to be found online:
"citizens, burgesses, free tenants, villeins and others from 15 to 60 years of age" should be armed. The poorest of them were expected to at least have a bow. This made it easier for the King to raise an army, but also meant that the bow was a commonly used weapon by rebels during the Peasants' Revolt. From the time that the yeoman class of England became proficient with the longbow, the nobility in England had to be careful not to push them into open rebellion. This was a check on the power of the nobility of England which did not exist on the European continent.

Medieval England understood the benefits of an armed population. The nation could be defended and the people would be more protected from tyranny.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Time to Eliminate Mike Huckabee From Presidential Consideratin

Former arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, in my mind, eliminated himself from serious discussion of a presidential nomination. He did so by backing Michelle Obama's nanny statist crusade against obesity. She is trying to attack freedom of choice and freedom of speech. She left us with the chilling line that the issue "just can't be left up to the parents."

Huckabee, a formerly obese man, backed her 100% and criticized Sarah Palin for objecting to Big Government making our food choices for us. He should know as well as anyone that weight is a lifestyle issue. It boils down to how much you eat and how much you exercise. Leftists don't believe in individual choice or responsibility, so they would like to use any other excuse to impose their will upon a nation.

MAD TV once ran a skit parodying those late night infomercials. The ad "offered" a can't fail diet plan of "Eat less, move more." The overweight woman kept asking if it was a trick. Would it cost money? The narrator said that if you eat less and move more, it actually saves you money. Michelle Obama convinced Congress to pass a $4.5 billion law that will target obesity. That costs all of us money in a time when our nation does not have it. Government needs to leave obesity alone. It is not their concern.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Tidbits . . .

Is Secretary of State Hillary Clinton resigning? Guess she is getting tired of being sent to town hall meetings in the Congo while Obama sends his secret friends to do the real work. She may also know something that we don't about this administration's horrible foreign policy.

Meanwhile, Obama once again makes a statement when he does not have to. Why would he just blurt out his support of Michael Vick and the Philadelphia Eagles? Politically speaking, it's a bad move. Why anger dog lovers that much more?

The Intrastate Coal and Use Act proposal should get a lot more scrutiny here and across the nation now that the EPA is ratcheting up its anti-global warming campaign. They want to start taxing emissions and hitting power plants with new regulations. States and Congress need to end this unconstitutional seizure of authority. Article 1 Section 1 prevents the EPA from doing anything along these lines without Congressional authority.

Jeff Kessler may have the votes to have himself named Acting Senate President, leaving Earl Ray Tomblin as Acting Governor only. This should remove the constitutional problem of having one man holding both a legislative and an executive branch post. Hope that these guys are "acting" in the public interest.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

It's Not A Cultural Issue, It Is Domestic Violence

There is a famous and rich young woman in Great Britain who is frightened for her life.

She is 22 year old Afshan Azad. Azad played Padma Patil in the "Harry Potter" movie series. Azad is not frightened of maniac fans, but of her own family. Azad dates a man of Hindu faith. Her father and brother would rather that she marry someone of their choosing. Her refusal earned her a beating and threats of death. Azad's fear of the radical Moslem community of Great Britain is so pervasive that she does not even want to risk appearing in court. She had to escape through a bedroom window and now risks death by "honor killing."

America law enforcement and judges must be prepared for cases such as these. Cultural arguments must be ignored because lawyers will try to use them to get reduced sentences or exoneration. Domestic violence is domestic violence, regardless of culture, nationality, or religion. If they do not like our laws and how we enforce them, they should not come here in the first place.

Britain has tried to be accomodating, multicultural, and embracing of diversity. That is fine to an extent. However, one cannot undermine the basic principles of justice to accomodate, or even appear to accomodate, barbarous practices from other lands. Azad does not believe that the British justice system will zealously protect her.

We can take steps to reaffirm our basic principles. These include the positive rejection of any form of Sharia law. Any personal practice of this law must conform with American justice and law. Period.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Yes, Virginia, There Is a Santa Claus

Eight-year-old Virginia O'Hanlon wrote a letter to the editor of New York's Sun, and the quick response was printed as an unsigned editorial Sept. 21, 1897. The work of veteran newsman Francis Pharcellus Church has since become history's most reprinted newspaper editorial, appearing in part or whole in dozens of languages in books, movies, and other editorials, and on posters and stamps.

"DEAR EDITOR: I am 8 years old.
"Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.
"Papa says, 'If you see it in THE SUN it's so.'
"Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?


VIRGINIA, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except [what] they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Yes, VIRGINIA, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no VIRGINIAS. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You may tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, VIRGINIA, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Statement of Acting Governor/Senate President Earl Ray Tomblin

From West Virginia Metro News. This statement reaffirms AG/SP Tomblin's position that he does not see his holding of both of his offices as a violation of the State Constitution. The 1872 Constitution clearly mandates a separation of powers between the three branches and that no one can hold offices in two or three at once. The acting governor ought to step aside from his legislative position. Then the state legislature needs to pass legislation to more strictly define the succession.

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin released the following statement Wednesday regarding the rules of the State Senate:

“With the passing of Senator Byrd, our State has had a shifting of governmental power not recently realized. With Governor Manchin becoming Senator Manchin, another transition has occurred as the duties of acting as Governor have fallen on me as Senate President.

“As you know, the Senate membership has been deeply divided regarding the changing of Senate Rules as it relates to the role of the Senate President while acting as Governor. This has resulted in an emotionally charged environment.

“During our caucus, I opposed the specific rule change that was proposed, which could be read to have prohibited my return to the Senate at all times and for any matters while I act as Governor. I did not believe that such a drastic rule change was necessary to preserve the appropriate separation of powers in our government.

“I am extremely mindful of separation of powers concerns. Indeed, I have taken steps which demonstrate that my main focus will be on running the executive branch only. Current Senate Rules provide that, while I am away from the Senate, the Senate Pro Tempore acts as President. Moreover, I have continually expressed to the members of the democratic caucus that I would listen to their wishes in determining who would be Senate Pro Tempore, i.e., act as President in my absence. Again, I have repeatedly indicated my willingness to abide by the wishes of the caucus in who presides over the Senate while I act as Governor.

“At this critical juncture in our State’s history, we cannot allow political disagreement to get in the way of improving West Virginia and moving her forward. We do not need to create chaos and instability at a time when the people of our State need reassurance that their government is functioning and that the business of vital services they expect continues without interruption.

“I take great pride in the role I have played as one of 34 Senators who have regularly placed the interests of our State first – ahead of personal interests and ahead of politics.

“My colleagues and I have been working feverishly to reach some conclusion where the Senate can come together without fractious differences that prevent the work of the State from being completed. The Senate is so terribly divided at this time that my main concern is getting all sides to begin the process of reconciliation in a manner that will permit the Senate to organize. If we do not work together to resolve our differences, we all lose, regardless of the particular set Rules we adopt.

“I am confident that, as we move toward the Legislative Session in January, the Senate will come together and do what is right for West Virginia. I am committed to continuing that dialogue and working with my colleagues toward a resolution.”

- Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Michael Vick As NFL MVP?

It's a looming issue for the National Football League. Tom Brady is having a typically wonderful year and his New England Patriots seem to have returned to their machine like precision, mauling every team in their path.

The NFL would love to have Brady win the Most Valuable Player award this year. But that may not happen.

Enter Michael Vick.

His very return to football after serving prison time on severe dog abuse charges was in debate. Most figured that the out of shape former Atlanta Falcon would sit the bench for a good team or start for a bad team. After all, he was a potentially exciting, yet mediocre quarterback in his first stint. What would be the difference this time?

He signed with the Philadelphia Eagles and made promises of commitment to coach Andy Reid. Vick's new approach to work and preparation has given a picture of what could have been a Hall of Fame career had he not wandered off the legitimate path and engaged in dog fighting. He now does the right things, says the right things, and makes you want to believe.

But there's still the heinous nature of his crimes. Vick didn't just get into a bar fight or end up at the wrong place at the wrong time. He caused dogs to suffer purposefully.

This begs the question, can the NFL honor a man with such a heinous crime in his past? Or is complete redemption possible?

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

West Virginia Population grows by 2.5% between 2000 and 2010

The U. S. Census Bureau reported that West Virginia's population grew by 2.5% between 2000 and 2010. This was enough to help the state retain its three representatives while Ohio and Pennsylvania each lost one.

West Virginia will see changes in the next year as the state legislature opens the redistricting process. This will undoubtedly reflect the increasing population growth in the Eastern Panhandle and continued diminishing counts south of Charleston. It will also reflect the political priorities of the Democrat controlled legislature. They will try to limit the potential damage done by gains in GOP dominated areas while trying to redraw districts to reflect the new population patterns.

It is difficult to predict what this means for the House and Senate districts locally. However, Mineral County should brace for changes at not only the state legislative, but perhaps also the congressional level as well. It sits on the eastern edge of both the 14th senatorial and 1st congressional districts.

The Potomac Highlands voters need to take an active part in the discussions of where they will end up.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Commentary By Mac Warner From Monongalia County GOP Site

I am not sure where I stand myself on Don't Ask, Don't Tell. I lean towards repeal, personally. However, I agree 100% with Mac's description of Manchin as "gutless" in skipping out on such an important issue. Either vote your conscience, one way or the other, or resign.

Monongalia County GOPManchin: Gutless and AWOL in Don't Ask, Don't TellGutless. Absolutely gutless. At a time of war when so many West Virginia soldiers are deployed, risking their lives in the fight against radical Islamic terrorism, we deserve a Senator who will represent West Virginia values -- not run and hide to protect his own political career.Yet, where was our new Senator, Joe Manchin, on Saturday when it was time to represent West Virginia values on repeal of the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" (DADT) policy? He was purposely avoiding the controversy, hiding at “a pre-planned Christmas party.” Yes, Senator Manchin, the career politician who has been angling for this job the last decade and quit being governor two years early to get this position, now chooses to sit it out when the votes aren’t easy. Less than one month on the job, he thought it better to let others decide whether DADT is right or wrong for our fighting forces.In a case resembling Senator Kerry's "I voted for it before I was against it" fiasco, Joe Manchin voted for the policy before he apologized to fellow Democrats, saying he'd probably be against it in time. You see, Joe Manchin knows West Virginians are largely a conservative, family-value type of people. Joe had hoped DADT would go away after his first vote (a parliamentary issue) with the new Congress being seated in January. He even hoped the President would act unilaterally, saving Joe from having to make a decision. He was trying to pull in DC what he's gotten away with for so many years here in West Virginia, having it both ways. But, when Senator Lieberman continued to push for repeal of DADT in the lame-duck session, Joe Manchin felt very lonely. He had been the only Democrat to vote against lifting the ban. So, when push came to shove, Joe ran. Joe ran out of town, and hid from his place of duty in DC. In less than one month, Joe's Achilles heel was revealed: no principal, no morals, no solid ground on which to stand.You see, his job is to represent us, the people of West Virginia. The people of West Virginia know that open homosexuality will not enhance the US military. That should have been Senator Manchin's vote. Or, he could have stood on principal -- again, open homosexuality is not a family value, and it should not be foisted upon our troops as a social experiment. But, Manchin's political career has taught him to avoid principal, to not make morals the basis for action, and to ride the tide of polls and the political sentiment of the day. When the tide of his own Democrat Party no longer provided him safe harbor, he chose the path of least resistance. Joe ran. The reasons why the policy should not have been lifted are many-fold, but in the interest of time, I briefly mention three. First, the survey used as the basis for this action was flawed. The questions were framed so as to skew and predetermine the outcome. The survey did not ask soldiers if they thought gays should be allowed to serve openly, but rather phrased the question so that if the soldier answered negatively, it made the soldier appear bigoted or insecure. Second, sexual attraction goes to the heart of human nature. Unlike skin color, religion, gender and other benign bases for civil-rights advancements, action based on sexual attraction must be regulated to maintain good order and discipline in our Armed Forces. That is why adultery, fraternization, bestiality, and certain other sex-based actions are prohibited by the Uniform Code of Military Justice. Third, take this to its logical conclusion. What logical basis is there now for not housing men with women? Upon what basis should the military provide separate showers or latrines? What about bisexuals, transgender individuals, bigamists, polygamists, pedophiles, and people with sexual desires/fixations on objects other than the opposite sex?Don't get me wrong. Our military faces much larger threats than repeal of DADT. Our soldiers are resilient, mature, and intelligent. They'll make this work. But, just because you can do something, doesn't mean you ought to do it. DADT worked because it was a compromise -- it kept both a lid on open homosexuality in a conservative, mission-oriented environment, and yet it provided for a reality that has existed in armies since the beginning of time. Gay people serve, fight and die just as straight people do. Until it could be shown that repealing the policy would actually help mission accomplishment (not just be tolerated or used to celebrate a social agenda), the policy should have remained in effect. Senator Joe Manchin wants the advantage of 20/20 hindsight. He wanted to be able to claim victory either way. You watch -- he'll have his spin, put on the Mo-Joe, and tell us how great our Armed Forces are. But, we need to remember that when the battle lines were drawn, and the engagement commenced, Joe Manchin was AWOL. West Virginia deserves better. We deserve leadership, not gutless avoidance. Remember Joe's failed response to DADT in November 2012.Mac Warner3110 North Greystone DriveMorgantown, WV 26508(304) 826-0998

Friday, December 17, 2010

Obamas: $4 billion to End National Security Threat of Fat Kids, $135 million For National Guard on the Border

Michelle Obama got her pet project through. It will cost us over $4 billion and put the president in charge of what snacks go into each school's vending machine. Unconstitutional, but when has that ever mattered to him.

Meanwhile, the funding for the paltry National Guard presence at the border $135 million, has run out. Troops will be withdrawn in February rather than July as planned.

Michelle Obama says that fat kids are a threat to national security. Obviously the Obamas think overweight children are more threatening than drug cartel assassins, threats to local law enforcement, gang infiltration of the Southwest, etc.

The Washington Examiner story is here:

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Nice Guys Don't Always Finish Last

Bill Stewart, above all other things, is a nice guy.

The million dollar question on a lot of folks' minds today is "what does Bill Stewart think."

Oliver Luck, West Virginia University's athletic director, has apparently inked Bill Stewart's replacement starting in 2012. Dana Holgerson has crafted top notch offensive units for Texas Tech and Oklahoma State. He has agreed to be West Virginia's offensive coordinator next year and head coach in 2012. In an interesting twist, Holgerson turned down Pitt's offer to become head coach there immediately.

Stewart agreed to be head coach next year and presumably will afterwards move upstairs to a soft and lucrative job in the athletic department. Barring disaster, he will retire with the best winning percentage of any coach in West Virginia history, at leats two bowl wins and one conference championship under his belt. Pretty good for a guy with a losing record at Virginia Military Institute prior to his stint here.

It is possible that Stewart has grown weary of the abusiveness of a certain segment of the fan base who believed that their school should have looked a little harder at different options to replace Rodriguez. If he was part of this process, it would be good to hear that from him. If he was not part of the process, it shows a possibly necessary ruthlessness on the part of Luck. The team seemed to lose focus at times this year on the offensive side of the ball. The offensive line had not progressed as fast as some had hoped. Skilled players fumbled balls without even being hit. Current offensive coordinator Jeff Mullen obviously will not be invited back. However Jeff Casteel, architect of one of college football's most punishing defenses, has agreed to stay on under the new regime.

Stewart's success at West Virginia includes more than wins. He has recruited top flight talent on both sides of the ball, which should give the new OC a lot of options next year. However, the perception is that West Virginia slipped from a top fifteen program to one once again hovering on the edges of the top twenty.

If the coaching staff can work together next year, this team has a chance at accomplishing some big things. Stewart can have a farewell tour and over time, memory of his coaching tenure will be that of a Beleinlike transition period. You liked the guy, he had some nice wins, but he probably was not going to get you to the top. Holgerson can take the next year as an understudy and learn how to build and manage a program. Some coordinators make that jump pretty well, others don't.

Hopefully this is yet another success authored by Oliver Luck.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

This Is Not a Joke: Michelle Obama Claims That Overweight Children Threaten National Security

There are few people in power in the federal government right now who are more absurd than Michelle Obama. The First Lady is looking very hard to make herself relevant to DC and the nation at large. Like many before her, she has latched onto a cause.

Laura Bush's passion was literacy. She wanted kids to read more books. Education and wide ranging reading expand the mind and enhance teh value of the free citizen on an individual basis.

Michelle Obama has bought into the notion that obesity is one of the greatest problems to ever strike the United States. Apparently when the vast majority of people have more than enough access to food that can sustain them, it's a bad thing. But don't worry, MO has a plan. Congress just passed a $4.5 billion spending bill to address childhood obesity. That'll cure it right?

In the speech after the bill's passage, she actually said that childhood obesity is a national security problem. Nothing that Joe Biden has said has ever approached the strangeness of this assertion. She claimed that if one in four kids were obese, then we would not have enough to recruit for the armed forces.

Let's see. Two million were in the military at its peak during the Cold War, outside of Korea and Vietnam. Probably 2.2 million or so today. We are a nation of over 300 million. That means that less than 1% of the population is in the military at any time. They can probably safely draw from the 75% of the nation, according to her numbers, that are not overweight.

She also said that the issue just cannot be left up to the parents. This is a red flag. Reducing freedom for the sake of the children is a common tactic of nanny staters. You never know precisely what their end game is, but you can bet that their "concern" does not stop with the children.

In all honesty, there are other reasons why kids might be overweight. Let's look at the elimination of recess and physical education classes. Let's look at the long bus rides taken by kids in consolidated school districts. Consolidation also reduces the opportunities to play team sports. Let's look at an antiquated time change structure that makes it dark at 4:30-5:00 PM in the winter. When are kids supposed to exercise if they so desire?

Friday, December 10, 2010

West Virginia Legislature Is Poised to Retaliate In the War on Coal

The original Constitution established a balance of power between the federal government, states, and the people. Protections in the original seven articles. such as state selection of senators and the Electoral College, helped to create that balance. The Tenth Amendment in no uncertain terms protected the rights of states against federal encroachment.

Over the past century, we have seen this balance erode. Popular election of senators seems more democratic, but it leaves state governments subject to congressional action while having no voice in the process. The expansion of the Interstate Comnmerce Clause to form the basis of the Civil Rights Acts was necessary only in that situation, but it has formed the basis of federal regulatory action in a wide variety of areas. Executive orders have become a dictatorial function; witness Obama's theft of over a hundred thousand acres of Alaskan land last week.

Individual Americans and state governments have passively watched these transformations for decades under the assumption that the intentions behind the accumulation of power were good. Most of them likely were intended to increase comfort and prosperity. Under Obama, however, the executive rbanch has a new agenda. It wants to slice away at American manufacturing and redistribute wealth within America and around the world. It has no problem creating artificial shortages of energy and rising prices by restricting coal and oil production. It seems to want the third world to gain more manufacturing jobs at the expense of Americans. Regulatory law has become an intolerable burden on so many facets of society from education to business. The EPA, as we have said time and time again, has made it worse.

When the federal government abuses its power, states must stand up. Governor Rick Perry of Texas refused to accept federal education dollars in exchange for giving more authority over curriculum over to the federal Department of Education. And now West Virginia is showing states how to fight the War on Coal.

Delegate Gary Howell (R) 49th is poised to introduce a bill next month that will limit the scope of the Environmental Protection Agency in West Virginia. It will deny the EPA jurisdiction over coal operations that only sell to a consumer in West Virginia. For example, if a mine only sells to the massive John Amos power plant near Charleston, its operation only falls under state authority instead of federal. This limits the scope of the EPA and potentially every federal agency if the model is followed in other areas. If passed, it could redefine the relationship between states and the federal government, restoring some of the lost balance intended by the Founding Fathers.

Some will ask if we can be sure that our environment will be protected by the state as thoroughly as the federal government. My answer is that West Virginia voters will have a lot more input on environmental policy if the state is controlling it. The EPA is as far removed from state voters as the Queen of England. It forgets that it is part of a federal republic beholden to the people. State governments will not. They will recognize the conservation agenda that balances the needs of man and of nature, not the radical environmentalists who would see West Virginians drop back to the stone age.

We must get the word out about the Intrastate Coal and Use Act both within West Virginia and around the country. This could be one of the opening shots in a true political revolution.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Name That "Martyr"

In the history of presidents, there have been some amazingly bad retorical choices made that veer from the paranoid to the blasphemous to the insane. See if you can guess which president mouthed which words.

1.“It’s tempting not to negotiate with hostage takers, unless the hostage gets harmed. In this case, the hostage was the American people, and I was not willing to see them get harmed.”

2. "The gentleman calls for three names. I am talking to my friends and fellow-citizens here Suppose I should name to you those whom I look upon as being opposed to the fundamental principles of this Government, and as now laboring to destroy them. I say Thaddeus Stevens, of Pennsylvania; I say Charles Sumner, of Massachusetts; I say Wendell Phillips, of Massachusetts..."

3."Who has suffered more than I have? I ask the question. I shall not recount the wrongs and the sufferings inflicted on me. It is not the course to deal with a whole people in a spirit of revenge....I have quite as much asperity, and perhaps as much resentment, as a man ought to have, but we must reason regarding man as he is, and must conform our action and our conduct to the example of him who founded our holy religion"

The first snippet is from a press conference yesterday that might rank as the point at which everyone became certain that Obama may be psychologically damaged. Both the Left and Right reacted with shock at the incoherence, the meandering, and the declining position of this president.

The next two come from Andrew Johnson's infamous Washington's Birthday speech. During this classic, he compares himself to Christ and his GOP enemies to Confederates and Judas Iscariot. And we all know what came of Johnson.

A National Review piece is linked below.,0

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

FCC Aims to Open the Door to Federal Control Over Television Media

One of America's greatest assets is its free market media. News and other television media groups can operate fairly freely under the First Amendment. Now the new FCC chairman, Michael Copps, is considering strict federal controls over broadcasters that would put them under stringent controls aimed at making them more publicly responsible (at least as far as the federal government is concerned.) Copps' issue is news. He believes that news is not as good as it used to be and that it fails to properly inform the public.

Who does this guy think he is? America's news outlets serve the public as it wants to be served. Fox and MSNBC are the obvious targets here. Note Senator Rockefeller's diatribe last month which seems to point to these very proposals.

We live in a free society based on choice. We do not need the FCC run by a Joseph Goebbels. We the people simply wish to be left alone. He wants pressure groups to have government sanctioned influence over the news and entertainment choices offered by the media.

Left wingers blame the news for last year's election. They will do anything possible to manipulate the media. They simply cannot believe that people can inform themselves and make their own choices.

Last, but not least, this is a constitutional issue. The federal government wants to control the message, violating the First Amendment in the process. This must not happen.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

A Day Which Will Live in Infamy

President Franklin D. Roosevelt: Yesterday, December 7, 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. While this reply stated that it seemed useless to continue the existing diplomatic negotiations, it contained no threat or hint of war or 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 as 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 Japanese forces 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. . .

Monday, December 6, 2010

The "Doomsday" File

Julian Assange, Number One of Wikileaks, has threatened to expose to the public a "doomasday" file that potentially contains everything from UFOs to the secret recipe of Coca-Cola (yes I am kidding!) This file apparently does have some actual stuff from BP, Bank of America, and the federal government. Assange wants to be free from not only U. S. arrest for dumping secrets, but also a sexual assault charge in Sweden.

It's hard to get a bead on Assange. Is he a guy that has a sincere belief that openness will help world conditions? Or is he a Bond villain style megalomaniac who is only seeking to destabilize and destroy?

To me it is more mundane. He craves attention. He cries out with every action "look at me!" hence the Bond villain style threat to destroy the world by releasing even more gossip between kings and diplomats, or maybe some callous statements by some executive in corporate America.

Fact is that the release of this information has had a very limited impact on most Americans. We know that information was compromised, but we're not shocked that Kentucky Fried Chicken and Coca Cola keep their secrets better than the feds. And while a lot of the released information was damaging, much of it also sounds like 7th grade gossip about who likes who and who is going to whose party. None of it has toppled a government.

And now the "Doomsday file." I am not sure if any file of any information that Assange has left could topple anyone. A few people get fired, a few PR firms make more money, life goes on. Most likely it is a bluff, an Al Capone's Vault in cyberspace. In any event, calling it the doomsday file makes it seem like the most important information on Earth. Unless it proves that we really are hiding UFOs or Lyndon Johnson and a time traveling Trilateral Commission shot JFK, then it will not live up to its billing.

It's much ado about Assange. And that is the way he wants it.

Friday, December 3, 2010

What Is the Point of This?

The above story describes a Hayden, Idaho man's construction of a hooded Ku Klux Klansman complete with noose.

First of all, let's not make this into a statement about people from Idaho or the state itself. Every state has people living in it whose views are fairly uninformed or downright stupid. Idaho is a wonderful place filled with wonderful people.

However, the frontyard Klansman is a huge monument to at best bad taste, at the worst an evil heart. What kind of person endorses the hanging of other people simply due to race or religion? The Ku Klux Klan victimized and brutalized blacks, Jews and Catholics in their heyday. They blew up schools and churches. They were the most dangerous domestic terrorist group in American history. My grandmother used to tell stories about how they would terrorize Catholics.

Should it be removed or taken down by the town? Not at all. First of all, it advertises exactly who and what this man is. Most people will shun him for it. Second, Americans have discovered that when you do not attack this kind of speech with government force, you deny it any kind of rebellion based credibility. He's not being attacked by the system, he's just one kook. European hate speech statutes have actually encouraged the growth of neo Nazism and skinhead movements.

Hopefully this person learns some kind of respect for other people, but he probably will not. His isolation and humiliation will be punishment enough.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Judges Gone Wild

There was a time when judges and the law profession at large understood the concept of "justiciability." In other words, they understood that judges should not cross into areas better addressed by the executive or legislative branches. This tended to keep caseloads a lot smaller and also kept federal judges from making decisions better left to elected officials.
This concept went out the window a long time ago.
Judge Carrie Webster has halted the West Virginia AAA title game that was supposed to have been played this weekend. Earlier in the state playoffs a fight broke out between players of Hurricane and South Charleston High Schools. The referees ejected the players with fourteen seconds left. Judge Webster said that the officials overstepped their legal bounds. The story can be followed from the link below:
Judge Webster has worked hard to immerse herself into a high school football controversey so that she can garner a lot of headlines and attention. What she has failed to do is to remember a judge's place. This is a job best handled by the other branches of government, not by Judge Webster. She should have dismissed any appeal to the courts as non justiciable and thrown the issue back to the WVSSAC where it belongs.
Judges across the country are on a power trip, seeing themselves as arbiters of nearly any possible situation. This ultimately wastes taxpayer time and money while increasing the stress on an already overburdened justice system.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

DREAM Act Dead For Now

The Senate on Monday killed a defense appropriation bill that, in the Bizarro World of Congress, means that the DREAM Act is also dead for the forseeable future.
The defense bill, for the most part, addresses the need for routine appropriations for the war. However, Democratic congressmen attached two significant "riders" that had nothing to do with appropriations. One eliminated "don't ask, don't tell." The other, the aforementioned DREAM Act, would have given citizenship to any illegal who spent two years in college or the military.
This was widely seen as a Democratic ploy to increase their voter registrations before 2012. However, many on the Democratic side also feared the national security issues that instant citizenship could create. Two years in college could legalize the status of drug cartel people or Middle Eastern terrorists.
Two Democrats joined the GOP in making sure that the numbers were there to fillibuster the bill. It is widely anticipated that the defense bill will return soon without the DREAM Act provision.

Monday, November 29, 2010

The Difference Between Debt and Deficit Is Well Understood

Earlier today, Obama proposed that federal salaries be frozen in place for two years to try and address the federal deficit. While that is a good idea in itself, it ought not be seen as a major part of the solution.

For a long time, politicians have counted on the notion that the public does not differentiate between the deficit (how much more we spend every year versus how much we take in) and the debt (how much we owe in total.)

The difference between the deficit and debt is like a quadruple layer cake with only a thin layer of icing on the top. Lowering the deficit is nice, but it does not solve the problem of spending more than our country makes in revenue. We cannot simply lower the deficit and then pat ourselves on the back and say good job. The deficit needs to disappear completely and we need to put money into paying down the debt.

To accomplish real debt reduction, we need to change our expectations of government and limit what we expect from it. We cannot build every road that anyone proposes. We cannot afford every single expensive program that comes down the pike. We should always be asking, like families, "Do we need this? Is there a less expensive alternative? How can we fit this into a rational budget?" Most importantly, we can ask "can the private sector do this better?"

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Yeager Airport (Charleston) Director Weighs In Against TSA

According to a West Virginia Metro News story, Yeager Airport Director Rick Atkinson is sounding off against the invasive pat downs implemented at many airports across the country. Atkinson says the TSA may be going too far.

He is right and also rightfully concerned. Only 15% of people in many polls have a problem with the nude body scanners, but many more have a problem with the "invasive" pat downs unveiled for this holiday season. Reports have even shown three year old children crying hysterically as a TSA official tries to run hands over the child's body. A man recovering from bladder cancer had his urine bag upset after he repeatedly warned them of its presence. He had to go on a plane covered in his own waste.

While these searches can find non metallic substances that can be threatening to a plane in flight, clearly they upset a large number of people. Airlines and airports may see much less traffic on short to moderate length plane trips as people decide to simply drive or not go at all. The new procedures also have extended the length of time passed in one's attempt to eventually board a plane. The flights to many normal destinations have become too burdensome and inconvenient and the free market will respond.

Of course the airlines will see a drop in revenues, causing them to demand compensation (i. e. bailout) money from the government caused by the actions of the government and the adverse publicity generated. Airports such as Yeager in Charleston will also suffer.

It's time for a new tactic. Get TSA hands away from sensitive parts of people's bodies.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Unfit For Office

It's not often that I say this, even about an extreme leftist. The voters pick who they want and they have the responsibility to live with their choice. However, I doubt that the voters of West Virginia understood that a part of Senator Rockefeller wants to wish away the First Amendment and get rid of FOX News and MSNBC.
Rockefeller comes from a very patrician family. That means that he descends from forefathers who felt that they had the right and the responsibility to exercise power. In Europe, they would carry the title of "Duke" or "Prince" in front of their last names. Here in America, they just try to influence as much as possible. By and large, most politically active members of the Rockefeller family have expressed little support for the dignity of the common man as an individual, although they express much love for "the people" as a group.
I'll address this next part to the Senator. "Faith" in government comes when government is responsive to the people and respects their rights to innocent life, liberty, and pursuit of and retention of, property. When the government sticks to its basic roles and functions, people will have more faith. However we are not meant to have too much faith. We need to be skeptical. Government should be, but rarely is, our obedient servant and we must keep a watchful eye upon it. Government is run by humans who are not always saints. They at times will lie, steal, cheat, and work hard to keep their power. Having faith does not mean that we always extend complete trust.
The fact is that FOX and MSNBC serve a purpose. They are part of that watchful eye on the government and they do not fail to report on the shortcomings of their political opponents. This has the result of making each party and ideological group more responsive because they know that eyes are on them all of the time.
FOX and MSNBC are also symbols of a free society in action. In our country, when it comes to politics, we exchange heated words instead of bullets and bombs. They are a sign of a healthy political society because no one is afraid to speak their mind and no one is shooting at each other. We should embrace the political society that spawns these organizations instead of bashing it.
When it comes down to it, the Bill of Rights is paramount. When Senator Rockefeller officially and publicly expresses the wistful desire to destroy the natural rights of both conservatives and leftists to speak freely, he has made himself unfit to serve.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Question of How a Special Election Should Be Handled For West Virginia State Governor

"7-16. Vacancy in governorship, how filled.In case of the death, conviction or impeachment, failure to qualify, resignation, or other disability of the governor, the president of the Senate shall act as governor until the vacancy is filled, or the disability removed; and if the president of the Senate, for any of the above named causes, shall become incapable of performing the duties of governor, the same shall devolve upon the speaker of the House of Delegates; and in all other cases where there is no one to act as governor, one shall be chosen by joint vote of the Legislature. Whenever a vacancy shall occur in the office of governor before the first three years of the term shall have expired, a new election for governor shall take place to fill the vacancy." You can find that here.

If you have an opinion, contact your state legislator as soon as possible!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


Just got finished watching a TiVoed version of Sarah Palin's Alaska. This show whose pilot was watched by five million (a TLC record for a pilot show) cannot fail to counter the attempts by others in the media to paint her as extreme, not too bright, or whatever else it comes up with.

Her critics will point to it as evidence that they were right all along and so will her supporters. Everyone else will see an accomplished, intelligent family woman expressing pride in her state and kin. Palin comes across on this show as genuine and real, a person whose concerns are by and large our concerns. She is definitely one of those American politicians like Lincoln, Truman, Lyndon Johnson and George W. Bush who speak plainly and honestly. Some like that and some do not.

Palin spends too much time talking about her neighbor and saying that she is not worried about what he does. If you hadn't heard, he is a critical writer putting together a hit piece on her while living next door. She mentions quite a few times how much he kind of bothers them, but they don't let it bother them too much. It's pretty apparent that the neighbor bothers them quite a bit.

With this program, assuming she is running for president in 2012, Sarah Palin has lightning in a bottle. As long as she maintains the balance between scenery and family, personality and politics, she can attract a broad audience and show people who she really is.

Except for resigning early as governor (a decision I still have a problem with), Palin has shown that in campaigning, for the most part, she remains ahead of the curve. This show ought to boost her to the front of GOP candidates. Woe be unto other aspiring politicians who try the same thing. Palin has a special charisma that most of them lack.

This show is her equivalent of Reagan's "A Time For Choosing" speech in 1964. It introduces her to the nation, but strictly on her own terms.

Politically masterful.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Haeth Shuler Might Take On His Toughest Competition

Heath Shuler knows what it is like to face some of the toughest men in the country. As a former Tennessee and Washington Redskins quarterback, he had to stand tough while the meanest, most ruthless, and angriest defensive players in the SEC and NFL took aim at him.

He might face tougher odds now and put himself more on the line than ever. This time his fearsome opponent may not Ray Lewis or someone like that, but a middle aged woman. Shuler is considering running against Nancy Pelosi for House Minority Leader.

He's not going to win. Republicans seized a large number of the seats held by moderate or conservative Democrats who were done in mostly by their last vote for Pelosi. Shuler needs to do something to keep himself relevant to conservative North Carolina voters and obviously is not prepared to switch parties (that is, unless this is a dramatic way to prepare his constituents for that kind of switch.)

Shuler could have a game plan here. If he warming voters up for a party switch, or a run for governor, or something else? He knows where the blitz will be coming from, the far left in Congress and the Republican right at home. A good quarterback anticipates the blitz and throws it in the direction of the blitz because there will usually be someone open. A tough quarterback stands in and takes the hit to make the successful play. So to which side will Shuler pass, right or left? He will take a hit either way. The question is, will he make the right decision so he can continue to be relevant in the game?

Friday, November 12, 2010

How Can a School Teach About the Rights of People When They are Violators of Rights Themselves?

How will the Republic end? It's a question that many ask in many different walks of life. We are under threat now, but what problems could undermine it further?

I suggest that the public school system may unwittingly be conditioning our schoolchildren into sacrificing safety for security in the vain attempt to prevent any tragedy on any level anywhere. To me, that is a much, much larger tragedy than successfully finding out that Johnny smoked a joint last weekend. We are conditioning children to believe that their personal and private bodily fluids are subject to seizure without cause and without a court issued warrant as the Constitution demands. If they do not comply, they are barred from driving to school or participating in extracurricular activities. However, here is the bigger issue. If they get comfortable with this treatment, what will they tolerate as adults for the so-called public good? This is a Bill of Rights matter.

Here is the text of the 4th Amendment.

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

The Bill of Rights is all that protects all of us from arbitrary tyranny where all our lives could be at stake, regardless of whether or not we make good choices in life. Law based in principle is all that protects us from the caprice of evil men and women. Children experimenting in drugs is bad, but it will not cause the downfall of the Republic. I do care if our government thinks it should take from us, examine us, follow us, all in the name of security, but eventually leading to the reality of control.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Is Stereotyping Bullying, too?

Happened to catch a segment on Headline News last night about Hollywood stars speakign out against bullying. Now as we are all aware, according to the media, this all started being a major issue about six months ago. Also it, again according to the created cultural perception, almost always involves football players of linebacker size or larger shoving and belittling one of the few outrageously flamboyant boys in school.

At least that is what I caught from the clips of a few anti-bullying movies shown during the report. Something about a letterman's jacket just seems to make people want to shove around theater students in bow ties.


This is not isolated. Popular culture producers have often depicted the big, bad, violent, over testosteroned football player as the ideal image of a bully. Basketball, wrestling, and baseball are less targeted. But is this accurate?

Just speaking anecdotally, I've played, coached, or otherwise been around football players and other athletes all of my life. They are no more likely to bully a kid than anyone else. As a matter of fact, they have more of their time consumed and have a lot more to lose by engaging in such behavior. As a matter of fact, again, anecdotally speaking, football players will at times find themselves the target of bullying. This happens often to the kids that play the line, because usually they are a lot larger than the other kids, but are reluctant to get physical against smaller children for fear of being accused of bullying.

Is bullying a bad thing? Absolutely. But let us stop the harmful and inaccurate stereotyping of athletes as perpetual malefactors in these cases.

As far as bullying itself is concerned, in most situations things improve when the individual recognizes that he is the only one truly interested in his or her own security. My opinion, encourage kids to fight back on their own or in groups. Bullies are cowards. They will just move on.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Shelley Moore Capito Selected For GOP Transition Team

Nov 08 2010
Capito Selected To Serve On GOP Transition Team
Today, Congressman Greg Walden R-OR, Chairman of the House GOP Majority Transition Team, announced the 21 Members responsible for overseeing the smooth and transparent transition into Republican majority.
Capito, who was elected to her sixth term in Congress last week, accepted the appointment with enthusiasm. “I am honored to be a part of the majority transition team as we seek to implement the first stages of an agenda aimed at listening and engaging the American people,” she stated.
In an earlier release, Walden stated that, “our transition team includes proven leaders who will meet our challenge to restore the House of Representatives as a great deliberative body that respects the will of the American people.” Members of this team will work to implement the congressional reforms included in the Pledge to America and look at additional ways to make Congress more transparent, cost-efficient, and accountable to the people.
To continue to engage Americans directly by seeking their input on themes like how Congress can operate with greater transparency and accountability to the people, the transition team has launched a new website at Americans are able to submit comments, videos and share information via Twitter and Facebook.
“I encourage West Virginians to take advantage of this unique opportunity to share their thoughts and concerns on how we can make Washington work better. I think we will see that transparency and citizen engagement will be tenets of the Republican Majority,” concluded Capito.
Members of the GOP Majority Transition Team
Rep. Rob Bishop (UT-1)
Rep. John Campbell (CA-48)
Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (WV-2)
Rep. Jason Chaffetz (UT-3)
Rep. Tom Cole (OK-4)
Rep. Mike Conaway (TX-11)
Rep. David Dreier (CA-26)
Rep.-elect Cory Gardner (CO-4)
Rep. Bob Goodlatte (VA-6)
Rep. Doc Hastings (WA-4)
Rep. Jeb Hensarling (TX-5)
Rep. Jim Jordan (OH-4)
Rep.-elect Adam Kinzinger (IL-11)
Rep. Buck McKeon (CA-25)
Rep. Candice Miller (MI-10)
Rep.-elect Martha Roby (AL-2)
Rep. Mike Rogers (MI-8)
Rep. Paul Ryan (WI-1)
Rep.-elect Tim Scott (SC-1)
Rep. Pete Sessions (TX-32)
Rep. Pat Tiberi (OH-12)

Monday, November 8, 2010

What's the Big Deal About India?

Obama's current vacation to India, a trip that involves almost twice as many planes as the entire (and nearby) Nepal Air Force, has been roundly criticized for its cost of $200 million per day. This figure, given by an Indian political figure, is in dispute by the White House, but they refuse to admit the price tag.
This may cause people to question why the trip to India is necessary.
Objectively speaking, it is. Of course you do not need thousands of people, the entire structure of the ritziest hotel in the region, forty planes, thirty-four naval vessels, and a partridge in a pear tree. Obama's huge entourage is very reminiscent of the old Mughal princes or the airs put on by British leaders of the Raj such as Admiral Lord Mountbatten. It is meant to show an imperial style more so than one of a republic. However, the trip is worthwhile, if approached correctly.
According to the CIA World Factbook, India occupies the most strategic point in southern Asia and the Indian Ocean. The country borders China's southwest and has skirmished with that country in the recent past. It has substantial mineral wealth, including the fourth largest coal reserves in the world. India also has a population of 1.1 billion. The country has nearly completed its transformation from an autarkic condition into a free market system. It has the 5th largest GDP in the world.
When looking at its economic might and the potential to someday become the strongest economy in the world, one has to take India into account as possibly the next great superpower. It also borders China, so if that country decides to get frisky, it can be a counterweight. Most importantly, India is a free market democracy in the old British tradition. It has the power to influence and guide events in its part of the world and deserves the opportunity to be encouraged to take a leading role. Getting India into the front rank of world affairs means that the United States can shift part of its leadership role to a country that shares our values and also has the capability of projective power and influence. A triad of the United States, United Kingdom, and India would be a powerful force for democracy and free markets in world affairs, if we can keep governments in all three focused on those priorities domestically as well.
So going to India is important. We must cement our relations with this country. It would not hurt for a group of Republicans to follow this up in a few months, obviously including Bobby Jindal. They can be a very important partner, or an insurmountable obstacle. We must deal with them carefully and respectfully.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Watching the Andrew Johnsonization of the President

In 1865, Andrew Johnson entered the White House after the assassination of President Lincoln. High hopes surrounded the presidency even without Lincoln. Some wanted punishment for the South, others wanted leniency. Some called for treating blacks fairly and getting them a new start, others were not as concerned.
Lincoln wanted lenient treatment for Southerners, but also did not impede the progress of his military's seizures of Confederate military and government officials' property for redistribution to blacks. It seemed like a fair punishment for taking arms against the Union, although it was not yet clear whether or not Confederates would face trial.
Johnson followed the leniency policy and forget about the blacks, taking control of Reconstruction. Northerners grew increasingly angry that the South seemed to face no punitive measures for starting the war. Those concerned about the fate of blacks saw legal proscription and impoverishment approaching for them.
Republicans stepped in by 1866 and started blocking Johnson. He reacted wildly, ranting about individuals such as Charles Sumner. Johnson actually made a national figure of the radical Thaddeus Stevens, representative of Pennsylvania, by condemning him so often. Moderates who might have compromised with Johnson recoiled at his bitterness and lack of decorum in speechmaking. The summer and fall of 1866 found Johnson speaking through hecklers and physical threats to support Democratic candidates. Republicans increased their majorities substantially. From 1867 until the end, Congress put Johnson in a box, but overplayed their hand in trying to impeach and remove him from office.
Are there enough angry Democratic moderates in both houses to join with the GOP and put Obama in his place? That remains to be seen, but a repudiation of Harry Reid by a coalition of Democrats and Republicans would be a great start.
Something to watch for. Wait and see if Hillary Clinton doesn't leave office within six months.

Generally Speaking, George Will Says It Better Than Almost Anyone. Obama's Interpretation of the Election

Will is, in this piece, writing on the theme articulated by F. A. Hayek, that planning leads to a government of, for, and by appointed experts, not the people or their elected representatives. Shriking government means getting rid of many of the expert planners. If it is too complicated for Congress and the President, we ought to sometimes argue whether the government should be involved at all.

In my experience, it is difficult for some leftists and liberals to hold a discussion. They believe that their principles are right and people will come to their side if they will only use reason. They do not understand that others can use reason and come to opposing conclusions. I understand the logic behind liberal and left wing arguments. I disagree with their conclusions about human nature and their lack of belief in individual rights.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

More Election Thoughts. Picking Up Seven in the House

Another Republican triumph that emerged this morning was the fact that the GOP picked up seven House of Delegates seats.
This shows that the message about Democratic control of the State Legislature for eighty years combined with consistent last place economic finishes is bearing fruit. West Virginians would call for the heads of a WVU or Marshall coach that always finished 4th or 5th, but have historically not voted differently when Coach Democrat always had us in last place.
Controlling the State Legislature will go a long way twoards changing the dynamic of this state and making it more prosperity friendly. We took a first step towards that change this year. Let us hope that 2012 gets us farther towards that goal.

Election Thoughts

First thought. Congratulations to the Mineral County Republican Executive Committee, Potomac Highlands Patriots Tea Party, volunteers, and candidates. This was a huge amount of effort that resulted in a conservative sweep in Mineral County. Great job, folks!

Mineral County's closest race was between Gary Howell and Charles Messick. Howell won by about ten percentage points. Richard "Doc" Lechliter defeated Wayne Spiggle for county commission by about twelve points. The other Mineral County numbers and percentages were much, much higher.

Thank you Lauren Ellifritz, Mineral County Clerk. Last night we saw that there was a very heavy turnout. Her staff, helped by Rose Ann Maine, Mary Margaret Rinehart, Janice LaRue, Cindy Pyles, and others made the election night go very, very smoothly. Thanks again, Lauren and everyone else!

Thank you to all the volunteers who got almost all the signs up last night. Some people do not mind them, but to other citizens they are an imposition that they tolerate becauseof the season. Getting the signs up quickly ensures that we retain their goodwill.

The narrow John Raese defeat, if seen from August, should be considered a Republican victory of sorts. Joe Manchin successfully deflected the message of the race away from his pro Obama statements and towards Raese himself and the Republican campaign. That is why he ultimately won. That all being said, who would have predicted that this race would have gotten this close three months ago?

Across the state, we saw some legislative setbacks. Craig Blair, a well known GOP figure, may have lost in his bid to jump from the House of Delegates to the State Senate in the Eastern Panhandle. The race is still statistically 50-50 with the mercurial John Unger leading by a few hundred votes. Mitch Carmichael's delegate race was much closer than it ought to have been in a district that is mostly Jackson County, but at this point he looks to have won. Former delegate Debbie Stevens was unable to regain the 46th from incumbent Stan Shaver. Republicans also failed to do well in the 57th and 58th districts in Jefferson County. Republicans certainly did better across the state in areas where they have not enjoyed success for some time. Over the next two years, the party needs to focus on local committees and get them up to the fight in every single county. Gary Howell's brief tenure as Mineral County chair demonstrated what can be done on the local level. Thousands of voter guides were distributed on foot and through the newspapers. Door to door walks were done on behalf of several candidates. The committee organized sign distribution and pick ups in a systematic fashion. Unopposed candidates, such as Krista Dixon and Lauren Ellifritz, remained involved throughout the fall with party functions. This is evidence of what can be done by the committees across the state.

Also do not forget the Tea Party. They held dinners and had some of the largest Tea Party rallies in the entire state. They participated in candidate walks. They raised money and paid for billboards in Keyser and the northern part of the county. Their activity was an essential part of victory last night for Republicans in this county. It could not have been done without their work and support. When Tea Parties and Republicans get behind good candidates instead of sniping at each other, they can do great things. The Tea Party brought people into politics who might otherwise have not been involved. Republicans need to recognize how essential the Tea Party movement has been and follow through on promises made to fight for smaller government and the expansion of freedom.

David McKinley, barring any surprise in any recount, seems to have won a slender victory over Mike Oliverio. This was a seat held by Democrats for a very long time. It reflects frustration with federal anti-mining and industrial policies combined with the growing affluence of Morgantown and Fairmont. McKinley is the star of the moment and the biggest success of this election, so long as Democratic lawyers don't find a way to steal the victory from him.

So both locally and across the state, we have a lot of work to do. Election day may be closer than we think. There is a chance of having a special gubernatorial election early next year. In any event, 2012 is closer than we think.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Stop Reading! Go Vote

This means you!!!

Potomac Highlands Conservative will return tomorrow.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Dude, Where's My Money? or "Da Planes, Boss! Da Planes!"

Forty planes, folks. Forty of them. Barack Obama is taking forty planes to India.

Why? They claim it is for security. Security? We need to pay for forty planes???

When James Madison went to war with Algiers, we only sent ten ships. These were enough to win the war. Now we need forty large planes to protect one man? I don't care what party the president is from or who he is. No one needs forty planes worth of protection.

They say that he has to take several specially made vehicles to form his motorcade. Fine. Wouldn't all of them fit on one or two C-130s? You could probably stuff a lot of the security detail on those planes as well.

Indian media have already pointed out that Obama will be the first to use a teleprompter in the Indian Parliament, many making that reference with obvious scorn.


Speaking of scorn, Jon Stewart called the president "Dude" on his show the other night. We have come a long way from George Washington, who while president once greeted his friend's friendly and public slap on the back with a look of cold anger and scorn. A president must be accessible, but also dignified. When presidents feel that they have to appear on comedy shows, this is what they should expect to happen. Of course this is a desperate Obama. He would have done more for his image to appear on Hannity and answer tough questions honestly.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

If You Are Still Thinking of Voting For A Democrat For House of Representatives This Year, Consider This . . .

Nancy Pelosi has a $19,000 per MONTH apartment in Washington D. C.

Guess who pays for it?


Vote David McKinley and Spike Maynard for Congress on Tuesday. Pelosi is unacceptable!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

How Much Do You Support States' Rights?

It's easy to stand by a principle when you agree with it whole heartedly. States' rights is an issue that conservatives tend to like. We want a balanced system between the state and federal authorities to prevent tyranny. We especially like the laws passed in some states that say firearms manufactured and sold entirely in one state are not subject to federal gun laws. That's great.

But what about something more controversial? Would you oppose federal action against California's Proposition 19?

California voters will decide whether or not to almost fully decriminalize marijuana this November. It does go a little too far in that it prevents employers from disciplining employees suspected of being high and it also does not outlaw smoking by passengers in a car despite the risk of contact highs. This is farther than simply putting pot on par with alcohol which is what most legalization groups want. It will probably also kill the proposal, rendering this point moot. Attorney General Eric Holder has vowed to act anyway regardless of state voters' choices.

Regardless of some of the objectionable parts, this is an issue for the voters of the sovereign State of California. This is not a federal issue. It is a test of our states' rights principles. Would those conservatives who disagree with drug legalization stand by the right of California to act in this manner without federal interference?

Personally I do not oppose putting marijuana almost on par with alcohol, except I'd go further and bar it from public spaces due to the nature of pot smoke. I do think that employers have a right to not have high, or drunk for that matter, employees. But those of you who are against legalization, would you support California or Attorney General Holder?

Federal intervention in state affairs has generally produced damaging results. Every time we make an exception and excuse federal meddling, we undermine the states; rights cause. Any detriment caused by California being able to make its own pot policy would be more than equalled by the benefits of the federal government respecting state voters and legislatures across the board.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Obama Has Lost His D@&^ed Mind, Much Like Andrew Johnson

You can understand why he did it. A month or so ago, Barack Obama made a trip to Georgia to support Democratic candidates. The Peach State's ticket topper, former governor and Democratic candidate for governor again, Roy Barnes, high tailed it for the southern part of the state. he did not want to be seen with Barack Obama.

When Joe Manchin wanted presidential punch, he opted for Bill Clinton rather than Obama.

It's clear that an agitated Obama in recent days has simply lost his mind. Like Joe Biden, you don;t know what crazy thing he is going to say. Unlike Biden, whose shenanigans are cheeky and fun, Obama's are tragic.

Obama told Latinos on Univision that they needed to "go out and punish their enemies."

He told Republicans, after being told himself by the Democratic candidate for governor of that state that he could do something anatomically impossible with his endorsement, that they "had to sit in the back of the bus."

Say what? Were he American, he would understand the Rosa Parks, second class citizen connotations in that remark. But we can't cut him slack. He is the president and should know better. The only conclusion that one can reach is that the strain of the presidency and his failures have left him mentally unbalanced.

The best comparison in U. S. History is Andrew Johnson. Johnson sported a strong inferiority complex and a severe drinking problem and allowed both to sink his presidency. He compared his political opponents to Judas Iscariot, compared himself to Christ on the Cross and generally made himself obnoxious. His attempts to build a Democratic majority in 1866 resulted in higher than expected GOP gains as he was ignored and ridiculed on stops across the nation. Republicans took Congress and put the president into a box where he could do only limited damage. They went too far in trying to remove him from office and created enough sympathy for him that he eventually made his way back to Congress.

Both Obama and Johnson showed two years into their term definite signs of a breakdown. Let's hope that we can avoid too much damage to our nation and its image between now and his loss in the primaries in 2012. Johnson was not renominated, neither will Obama.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Who Is "Public Policy Polling?"

Not every pollster can be believed.

In nearly every poll of the West Virginia race for United States Senator in the past few weeks, John Raese enjoys anywhere from a five to nine point lead.

The only holdout is Public Policy Polling who has Manchin ahead by six points in its most recent evaluation.

Say what? Who is Public Policy Polling?

PPP is an outfit out of North Carolina that Real Clear Politics always denotes with a (D) when publishing its numbers. And D don't mean "Dallas."

PPP has a track record in this election of bucking the numbers of polls that show light to moderate leads for Republicans by indicating ties or Democratic leads. Their effect is to bring down the average reported Republican poll leads every week. If you want any further proof of their bias, they show that John McCain has a moderate 13 point lead over his opponent, while the non partisan Rocky Mountain Poll has McCain up by 34 points.

More proof needed of their bias? Oftentimes their polls are funded by the radical left wing Daily Kos website. No motivation for bias there, right?

Unfortunately for those behind these bizarre results, these polls will have the opposite effect. An energized Republican base will grow even more motivated to bring out the voters if the polls look close. If you only care about the John Raese race, you will be more likely to come out and vote if the numbers look closer. Of course Raese voters will tend to vote Republican on the rest of the ticket, so trying to make the Raese/Manchin contest look closer than it actually is should only help the West Virginia Republican Get Out the Vote efforts.

Monday, October 25, 2010

David McKinley Picks Up Another Endorsement

National Seniors Group Endorses McKinley

"Fighter for the Elderly;” “No Finer Friend in Congress”Alexandria, Va. – The 60 Plus Association, a national non-partisan senior citizens group, has endorsed David McKinley in the race for West Virginia’s First Congressional District.The organization promotes death tax repeal, saving Social Security, affordable prescription drugs, lowering energy costs and other issues featuring a less government, less taxes approach as well as a strict adherence to the U.S. Constitution.“David McKinley is a fighter for the elderly,” said 60 Plus spokesman Pat Boone, noting McKinley’s “views on seniors’ issues” earned him the backing of the 18-year-old organization.“David McKinley can always be counted on to protect Social Security and Medicare,” Boone said. “David McKinley will be a tax cutter, protecting the pocket books of senior citizens. 60 Plus calls on nearly 5.5 million seniors nationally for support, so I believe I can speak on behalf of seniors when I say that they can count on David McKinley. Clearly, seniors will have no finer friend in Congress than David McKinley.”Boone explained that 60 Plus monitors congressional votes bestowing awards on lawmakers of both parties who vote “pro-senior.”On broadcast interviews this week McKinley has called for protecting the Social Security trust fund with a firewall so that its holdings are dedicated exclusively for retiree benefits. He also opposes higher taxes, raising the eligibility age and cutting benefits under the program.Getting most of the nation’s 15 million unemployed back to work, McKinley says, could help pump close to $50 billion into the retirement system helping to shore up its solvency.Throughout his campaign, McKinley pays calls on senior citizen centers to hear their concerns. In debates this week with his opponent, McKinley touted dozens of endorsements of his candidacy from business groups, labor organizations and a diverse collection of advocacy, professional and trade associations.###

Friday, October 22, 2010

Juan Williams Is a Victim of Left Wing Attack On Traditional American Liberalism

Juan Williams is currently a contributor to Fox News Channel and was formerly a personality on National Public Radio. His appearances on shows like Hannity were usually civil and gracious, but Williams is one of the cadre of liberal commentators that Fox calls upon to balance the oratory of its conservative hosts.

Liberals and left wingers generally joke about Fox News's tag line of "Fair and Balanced." My column writing partner Charlie Meyer calls them "F word News." But judge for yourself who is fair and balanced, Fox or the liberal left darling NPR.

On Fox, Williams made the statement that he would feel uncomfortable sitting on an airplane that also carried a Moslem in traditional garb. It was an honest statement that reflected the fact that Islamic fundamentalists tend to be more likely to blow up planes. It was a frank admission by a liberal and a black man who would probably criticize racial profiling. He never advocated any action against the man, but simply admitted his discomfort.

Were NPR smart, it would have involved Williams on air in a discussion about race, religion, stereotypes, and national security. That would have been great radio. Instead it fired Williams almost immediately. Conservatives and no one else have rushed to the defense of the liberal commentator. It sparked a spontaneous and sudden demand from Republican congressmen to remove federal funds from NPR, especially in light of the massive financial support given by left wing billionaire George Soros.

NPR itself stated that it received repeated complaints from listeners about Williams. In the free market, repeated complaints are welcome news because it proves listeners are paying attention. NPR, however, is ideological, not commercial.

Williams was sacrificed to the fact that the Left does not like American liberalism. American liberalism traditionally supports government solutions, but also acknowledges American exceptionalism. The Left hates the idea that we are any better than anyone else. In fact they revel in the idea that we are one of the worst countries out there. Liberals want government solutions, but the Left seeks government control. Left wingers historically hate liberals worse than conservatives because they see them as underminers, devoted to half measures. They are tolerated so long as they are useful.

Juan Williams will be fine. But his firing only underscores the fact that the "conservative" news channel continues to welcome diverse viewpoints much more so than NPR and other bastions of left opinion manufacturing.

Fox News listed a number of offensive statements made on NPR itself. Some were anti-Semitic. Others breezily hoped that four million Christians would evaporate. They called Republicans hate-filled and Tea Party activists "teabaggers."

NPR is right. Williams does not belong there. He is too tolerant and too mature for their brand of broadcasting.

Williams' personal statement on the difference between his traditional liberalism and left wing ideologues is linked below.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

The NFL Is Responsible For the Increase of Devastating Hits

I can honestly see the day when the NFL will become a flag football league.
Last Sunday you saw about three or four hits that caused concussions. One of the hits, made by Qunicy Wilson's whipping boy Brandon Merriweather, was flagrantly dirty. When a guy who is five foot nothing butts heads with a standing man of 6'5, that is a dirty play.
The rest were just good football hits where a guy's head just got in the way. James Harrison of the Pittsburgh Steelers was fined $75,000 for such a hit and has threatened to retire. The NFL is in essence about to come up with its own version of a strike zone, allowing hits only between knees and shoulders. In a game where you have high speeds, collisions, and offensive players falling down, this is simply not feasible.
Will the NFL admit its own erroneous moves have caused a spike in head injuries and "devastating hits?" At some point over the past several years, the NFL started calling pass interference calls on defensive players much more tightly. They wanted to get away from low scoring, run oriented football for the allegedly more exciting, higher scoring pass oriented game. Quarterbacks now throw the ball routinely as much as forty times per game. This exposes the smallest and most vulnerable players outside of kickers to more punishment. These are quarterbacks and receivers.
It is common sense that you won't see as many devastating hits on vulnerable players if the offenses run a balanced, or run oriented attack. The players are not moving quite as fast and there are few opportunities to really blindside someone. The NFL wanted to have their faster and high scoring game, but now they wring their hands when the hits get harder and produce more injuries. It is partly their own fault for tinkering with the game.
This goes back to the law of unintended consequences that we apply to politics. When you change the rules, you cannot foresee all outcomes. In many situations, people get hurt. That is why you must be very careful when you change things.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Tom Stark's Letter to the Editor About Lies In the U. S. Senate Race

This is a heart felt letter from Tom Stark, former candidate for Congress.

This election cycle produced some of the most blatantly false political advertisements I have ever experienced. Of particular concern is the venom almost palpable in the Manchin and DSCC ads attacking John Raese. Keep in mind that John’s ads have said nothing worse about Manchin than his “rubber stamp” reference which is clearly documented as factual based on Manchin’s own words and actions. Not one word from Joe on his own accomplishments or lack thereof. Let's take them one at a time: -

Raese “lives” in Florida where he bought/built a home to avoid WV taxes.

Taxes are higher there than here. Many West Virginians own homes in FL. John owns the home in FL to provide a place for his wife and daughters to live while the kids attend a special school known to be the best at accommodating the disability one of his daughters has. I’d say that was admirable, not a bad thing at all. -

Liz Raese cannot vote for her husband because she lives in FL. John’s wife resides there during the school year to take care of her children, and he visits during the school year when he is able. She qualifies to vote in FL because she lives there more than she lives here and would be unable to come back to WV to vote with any consistency. It is unfortunate that she cannot vote for her husband, but her civic responsibility is also to be admired. I doubt they enjoy the separation, but do it for their children. -
Greer Industries has a bad safety record.
At least one of Greer’s safety awards (among many they have received) was presented to them by Joe Manchin. In fact, the mine pictured in the background of Manchin’s ad criticizing Greer’s record has a far worse safety record than any of the Greer facilities. -

Raese is not “in touch” with the people of WV because he’s rich.
The Democrat brand of politics relies heavily on “class warfare” and “class envy.” Divide and Conquer. Truth be known, if most people who resent and hate the wealthy people in this world spent as much energy and time in productive pursuits rather than resentment and hate, perhaps God would reward their spirit and shower them with blessings as well. The Raeses are both good people who have been fortunate, but that is no reason to claim they are out of touch. Liz and John Raese have done many good things for their community in WV. The Raeses and the Greers have contributed to the health of the WV economy for over a century, and providing jobs for thousands heads the list. What scares Democrats about John Raese is that he is not a career politician. He is committed to his beliefs in the Constitution and freedom. That threatens the control that Congress and the administration are determined to force on the American people.
John needs our help on November 2 to stop them.
Tom Stark