Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Wordpress + Free Blog Space = Why Not

It looks like I'm not the only one influenced by Kilo's reference to Wordpress' offer of late. Norm has a test ride going.

I have looked at it, and am considering the options. But as Norm says there will be the consequences of transferring links and maybe even archives. Not to mention the "tens and tens" of readers. If I do make the switch it will have to come after things settle down some at work.

Help Me Jog My Memory

I admit it. Time (and a somewhat misspent youth) has diminished my memory. But does anyone remember the ACLU or another liberal organization suing a school board because of a requirement of parental notification before administering aspirin?

Maybe they sued The Piercing Hut or some such shop because they require parental permission before piercing the ears of a minor. No?

Then maybe they joined another group in support of such a suit. No again, you say?

OK, then how can this case be about constitutionally guaranteed rights if the previous examples are not? And if instead it is, then why has not some liberal group brought such a suit?

The answer, when looked at in this logical manner is pretty obvious. Keeping abortion law out of the State Legislatures and maintaining a "Constitutional right" to such a procedure is more important to the ACLU than their often stated "health and well-being" and "concerns for privacy" of the female in question. Their stated concerns for upholding the Constitution also go right out the window when their actions are viewed in this light.

Valleydale Foods in Salem will cease operations

The cartoon pigs will stop marching in Salem beginning in January. Duncan Adams tells of yet another major plant closing in southwest Virginia.

Add 344 Southwest Virginians to the total that are looking for alternate employment. Subtract $135,000 from Salem's tax base.

But, hey! We have a new Governor who will fix all this, right?

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Remember Those Words From High School?

"That will go on your 'PERMANENT RECORD', young man!"

According to this article in the Atlanta Journal Constitution, there may be something to that phrase after all...

Monday, November 28, 2005

The Civil Wrongs Of The Roanoke Times, Redux

I have decided that this morning's post concerning The Roanoke Times' disturbing tendency to omit pertinent information in their editorials deserves revisiting.

By blatantly omitting pertinent facts in the writings appearing on the editorial page, whether penned by you Tommy or not, as Editor you are condoning this practice. Wendy, if, as Publisher you condone this practice on your editorial pages, how can we be certain you do not condone it in the news sections? Can we be certain that what we read in the rest of the paper contains all the information available to the reporter?

WARNING: The following will be construed by some to be extremely politically incorrect. Bear with me and read it all and you will see that there is no intention to disparage anyone other than the two subjects of this note.

Consider these two terms;
Stupid; adj.
1. Slow to learn or understand; obtuse
2.Marked by a lack of intelligence or care

Ignorant; adj.
1. Lacking education or knowledge.
2. Showing or arising from a lack of education or knowledge: an ignorant mistake.
3. Unaware or uninformed.

There is a marked difference in these two conditions. One is understandable, excusable, even worthy of concern and community help where possible. The other is almost always inexcusable for it can be easily cured by education and or seeking to learn. The only thing less excusable than ignorance is the deliberate attempt to foster it.

Wendy Zomparelli and Tommy Denton, I have said on several occasions that you are doing your readers a grave disservice in refusing even to admit, not to mention attenuate, your extreme leftward bias and obvious hatred for George W. Bush. After considering today's editorial I have concluded the two of you are guilty of much worse. You are contributing to the ignorance of those in your community. The primary purpose of a newspaper is to educate the readers in it's community. By deliberately omitting and obscuring facts you are attempting to create an ignorant readership. And it seems you are doing this for the basest of reasons, pure hatred. Yes, that emotion you are so quick to attribute to conservatives, it seems you harbor more than your share yourselves.

Where does this hatred come from? Tommy, could it be left over from the time you spent in the employ of Lloyd Bentsen? Did that time period leave you with such a volatile bile for the Bush Family? As to Wendy, I have no idea, unless it is just hatred of anyone and anything that purports to be as compassionate and caring and enlightened as she. So, how about it Wendy, don't we all deserve to be enlightened? Or would that ruin your self esteem, to know that others in Southwest Virginia are as enlightened and compassionate as you? Or are you so insecure in that enlightenment that you can't bear to share all the facts with your readers?

It's Not What You Say, It's What You Don't Say.

Another Bush Administration smear by Tommy Denton in The Roanoke Times;
Georgia's shameful attempt to effectively reinstate a poll tax should have been blocked by the U.S. Justice Department under the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

Career lawyers in the department's Civil Rights Division found that Georgia's requirement that voters without drivers' licenses or other photo ID's buy them from the state would disproportionately burden the poor and reduce the access of blacks to the polls. But they were overruled by high-ranking political appointees, who precleared the program.
What this piece goes to great pains to avoid telling the reader is that Georgia's law contained a provision that would have provided the ID at no cost to anyone who simply claimed they could not afford it.

This is Tommy Denton's favorite tactic. It's easy for him to make his enemy George Bush appear quite evil, if he leaves out vital information that any ethical debate requires.

And this comes from the same man who is constantly harping something about "Bush lied" because "some information" regarding Iraq was "witheld" from the Democrats in the House and Senate. If withholding information is lying, Tommy, you would be in the professional ranks.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Virginia Blogger Carnival XIII

The weekly Virginia Blogger Carnival will be posted some time Monday. I probably will not have time to post a link to it tomorrow, so I'll do so now. Also, I missed the submission deadline this week. My regular readers know that I am completely absorbed in the final start-up at the plant in Stuart.

Even though I am not represented, (or maybe because I'm not) I suggest a trip over to Brandon Myers' blog for the thirteenth episode of our continuing Virginia saga.

From Shaun Kenny

Shaun Kenney makes a very astute, but obvious observation today:
"On the flip side of the coin, while the Republicans could afford to elect so-called moderates while Democrats held the majority, this is no longer the case today. Conservatives are the majority, and the fact that Democrats have to pander and dilute their ideology to the conservative mainstream speaks volumes. Republicans who do not eschew the principles of conservativism are viewed skeptically."
Go read the rest, that was just a tease...

Ewert To Announce Candidacy (Officially) Dec. 3

The Roanoke Times has this story from Todd Jackson. Former Roanoke City Manager Bern Ewert will officially announce his intention to challenge Virgil Goode for his 5th District House seat.
Ewert, who is in Europe on a vacation with his wife, [BTW, great way to connect with your average 5th District consituent, Bern. abf] plans to formally announced his candidacy Dec. 3 in Bedford, said his daughter, Elizabeth, a lawyer in Washington. Ewert served as Roanoke's city manager from 1978-85 and established himself as a bold and brazen governmental leader during his tenure. If Ewert gets the Democratic nomination, he likely would have more name recognition than any opponent Goode has faced.

This upcoming announcement from Ewert is not news, it has been rumored for some time now. Mr. Ewert will also have to overcome another challenge within the Democrat Party in order to obtain the nomination. Goode's previous challenger, Al Weed, from Charlottesville has also announced his intention to try once more to take Goode's seat in the House of Representatives.
Times reporter Jackson also points out the "scandal" Virgil Goode has found himself involved in with his ties to Defense contractor MZM. I doubt that story will have the legs to last until the campaign, but it will be Ewert/Weed's only weapon against Mr. Goode.
Jackson's story also contains this paragraph;
Goode, once the youngest member of the Virginia Senate, has had a long and successful political career in which he became disenchanted with national Democratic politics, left the party to become an independent, and then later joined the Republican ranks. His decision to become a Republican landed him the influential spot on the House Appropriations Committee.

I have seen Goode's departure from the Democrat Party described this way on numerous occasions lately. My memory is somewhat different. Virgil Goode, as one of only 2 (I think) Democrats to maintain a backbone during the Impeachment trial of Bill Clinton, was shouldered out of the Democrat Party. He lost any standing he had within the party and was forced to leave. Mr. Jackson, it would be appreciated if you would research this before repeating the misleading version quoted above.

My somewhat leftist friend, Waldo Jaquith, has more information, although mostly it concerns Goode's final switch from Independent to Republican. Very good research, Waldo. However, I stand behind my memory as it pertains to the actual rift that drove Virgil to finally make the move to Independent status. I have neither the time, nor the resources (I live in C'ville, but not that C'ville) currently to research the topic properly.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

A Good Productive Day...

Now, sit back, listen to some Mickey Newbury...
A nice short glass of Bushmills...
Or two...

Friday, November 25, 2005

Another Milestone

Today I managed to get all systems to work in unison and fire up the dryer burner on wood fuel. Up until now I had been running on LP exclusively. Propane does not provide enough BTUs on it's own to dry the wood fibers in preparation for making fiberboard. We will start the dryer burner on propane, get everything all warmed up, and introduce wood dust as the main fuel. At that point the propane will be turned off and the wood dust will provide the BTUs necessary. The timing of this changeover must be precisely controlled, if the burner chamber is not sufficiently preheated the wood will not ignite when it enters the chamber, if too much time has elapsed LP gas is merely wasted. I don't have this system completely fine tuned yet, that should occur sometime tomorrow, but merely getting the wood fuel introduced to the burner was a major milestone accomplished.

I am tired. I am happy. Wow, this is fun!

Thursday, November 24, 2005

More Patrick County Development?

This could be a good thing...

With Thanks...

"O come, let us sing unto the Lord: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation.

Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms."

-- Psalms 95

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Wednesday Evening

I've been silent here since Sunday's Carnival post.

I "hit the ground running" on Monday morning and finally have some time to just sit back and relax. I'll be off tomorrow for Thanksgiving of course, but then it's back to it on Friday and Saturday. Since Monday morning I have actually sat at my desk for a total of 20 minutes. Maybe.

The good news is we have all machinery and equipment up and running at the fiberboard plant. The bad news is it does not all work in unison. Yet. Small steps get us further along each day. I love it when a small "tweak" to my code gets two machines working as a unit instead of mechanically clashing like giant steel NWA wrestlers.

We recieved our first load of wood shavings last week and I plan to begin processing that load Friday morning. By Monday morning we should be able to move that product to the pressline and actually produce our first board sometime Monday.

We have new employees showing up every day. Some training is beginning, along with OSHA safety training. The place is beginning to look less like a construction site and more like a manufacturing plant.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Volume 1, Issue 12 Virginia Blog Carnival

It is my extreme pleasure and honor to be allowed to host the 12th issue of the first year's edition of the Virginia Blogger Carnival. May it continue in the years to come as a valuable resource to future Virginians. Many thanks to Chad Dotson for coordinating our feeble efforts.

J.R and Squeeky at "Hampton Roads' Number One Source For Conservative Stuff" gets us started with what will become a regular feature on their newly redesigned blog. It's a great look and with this development in just a short time they may outrank NPR on the Hampton Roads Arbitron Ratings.

Next, the still recuperating Kilo is also on a sound subject with this post. I certainly intend to follow his advice as soon as possible. Be sure to check out the link contained in his post, it's awesome.

Norm, at One Man's Trash has discovered shorter (not to mention quicker) is not always better.

Continuing on somewhat the same theme, (my previous post even fits, though not intentionally, maybe there is something to this subliminal consciousness stuff after all...), Waldo revisits every audiophiles greatest quest and simultaneous nightmare. How can anyone winnow a subjective art like music down to a top ten list? Maybe it's the age difference, but his list looks nothing like mine. I'm 50; he's younger than my daughter. We do share a couple of artists though. That alone is enough to justify those artists place on anyones list, I guess. How about it Waldo, I'll trade you a Newbury Mp3 for one from the artist of your choice.

Brian Patton breaks us out of the audio theme with a post about some friends from Kentucky that dropped in on him Saturday-before-last. (That's a SWVA'ism, y'all). He also has one of the best blog pics I've seen in some time. Those of you who visit here regularly know how deep my roots run into his area of the state. (I've ridden motorcycles with Phillip Puckett, bet you and Chad can't claim that Brian...) This picture was a very welcome memory jog. Thanks Brian.

Next I want to present Adam Gurri, at Sophistpundit. He has an insightful take on the Hatfield, McCoy oops, Hucheson-Rodokankis feud. Of course this piece goes deeper than the feud. I have been tempted to post on this, but after reading Adam's post, I'm glad I didn't try to rise to his level of quality thought and prose.

Xyba at Once More Into The Breach offers his thoughts on the future of politics, in both Parties.

The Blue Dog and Steve oops again, The Blue Dog and Steve are lusting for a Mark Warner Presidential run, but not necessarily for the reasons you may think. (Get that other thought out of your head. The Horizontally striped shirt Steve is not capable of lust, but this one in the Valley most certainly is.)

From Burke, we have Bwana at Renaissance Ruminations explaining why nominating conventions are not utopia as they have recently been described by those with either a selective memory or none at all.

Come back with me now to my beloved Southwest where we find Jerry reminiscing about his college days. Well, not really, but those days do figure into the subject at hand.

As Host of this week's Carnival, I have reserved to myself the right to add one or two "Host's Picks" from among the Virginia Blogosphere.

For my first pick, I noticed there had been no submission from Black and White; upon checking I suspect this is the reason. So, I'll pick this one.

Hans sometimes does and sometimes don't. So I've picked this one.

Earlier this week a couple of our newer Virginia blogs were profiled on a few blogs, here I present one from Mason Conservative ,(BTW, thanks Chris for getting rid of the white on black text, older eyes don't handle that well) , one from SouthArlington and finally one from Adam Tolbert in the saltbox of the Confederacy at Smyth County Conservative.

Finally, my neighbor to the west in Meadows of Dan, Barnie Day, and I are polar opposites politically, but the man is a good writer. I have to include this from him.

I want to thank all our contributors this week for allowing me to host links to your excellent writing. After reading the submissions this week, I only hope that through some perverse type of osmosis I have absorbed some of your talent and will present better blogging from here in the future.

Next week, Brandon Myer, the author of this election analysis will get to enjoy this experience.

While Compiling VBC

Listening to the late Mickey Newbury while writing up this week's Carnival...
Bio... Interview
Keep a candle burnin' ever low
Don't be moved by every wind that blows
Save your cryin' for the picture show
Give your love to one you truly know

Let it go let it flow unchained
You know time will wash away the pain
All you're feelin' is a cleansing rain
Shake that rusty chain and let it go

It's alright if you need to cry
It always hurts to say goodbye
Wash away the memory from your eyes
Shake that rusty chain and let it fall

You can make it day to day
You are broken only if you break
Save the good and throw the rest away
Give your love to one you truly know

Let it go let it flow unchained
All you're feelin' is a cleansing rain
mmmm mmmm mmmm mmmm
Shake that rusty chain and let it go
(Don't worry, I'm not going to start cat blogging next)

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Wow! What power! I ask for it, I get it.

Was I precient, or was it inevitable after all the demogoguery?

FYI, Congressman Murtha voted against immediate troop removal, after he quoted for it.
Tommy and Company at the Roanoke Times would just as soon you forget this quote from last Saturday's editorial regarding the wisdom of John McCaine;
But to withdraw now courts disaster by leaving Iraq to fall into a fully engaged civil war, vulnerable to its terrorist-sponsoring neighbors, Syria and Iran...
To cut and run is to invite a "jihad wave."
Instead you should now refer to this quote from today's (Saturday) editorial;
Before Thursday, Murtha's name and influence weren't well known outside Pennsylvania or Washington, D.C., where it is legendary. He might not carry the name recognition of Sen. John McCain, but he is McCain's peer when it comes to military service and knowledge of national defense.
The RT continues with;
Murtha's dramatic assessment coincides with the Senate resolution demanding that Bush develop an exit strategy.

Congress is finally doing what it failed to do three years ago before foolishly ceding the power to declare war. Members, finally, are questioning the validity and prosecution of a mismanaged military campaign that has unnecessarily put troops in harm's way.
Jerry has taken a slightly different tack on this Roanoke Time internal conflict.

Dogbert, Look In Stuart!

For the answer to this,

Begin your search here...

Friday, November 18, 2005

Virginia Blog Carnival Vol.1 Issue 12

J.R. at Bearing Drift did a great job with the Carnival last week. (Check out the new look over at Bearing Drift, very nice, guys.) Now it's my turn. Hopefully I can rise to the standard set by all our previous hosts. I'll be looking for your submissions soon.

Please submit your entries to imnotemeril(AT) with the subject heading "VBC" not later than 5 p.m. EST Sunday Nov. 20. Or you can use this online submission form.

In the text of your email, please include a permalink to your entry and a link to your profile, should you have one, and/or your preferred public email address.

Typically we keep VBC light on the politics, so to our political bloggers (and you know who you are...) show us something a little different.

Thanks, again!

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Once Again, Sparse Posting...

We are getting down to "crunch time" at the new plant in Stuart. I will strive to place at least one post per day here, but even that will take some major effort on my part.

I am in that part of the project that requires me to be in every part of the plant at all times. A physical impossibility, but still it must be done.

I justify it all with two statements.

One; This has always been my favorite part of a major project. I love a challenge and this part of a project is the ultimate challenge. To bring together the efforts of all my electrical guys and make their contributions work in union with the results of the work of their mechanical counterparts.

Two; I know that when I have completed my contribution to this overall effort, I will have contributed in some small way to the employment of at least 50 of my fellow Southwest Virginians, with more employment opportunities to come in the following weeks and months.

PS: Hey Kilo, come on over to the morning side of the mountains and apply to run the QC lab here. Hey, it could work, no?

OK, Congressman Murtha...

Put your money (credibility) where your mouth is.
I expect a resolution will be introduced within the next few weeks stating your position that America should pull it's military presence from Iraq.

Or maybe a resolution removing monetary support from the effort in Iraq.

You have many options, Mr. Murtha, exersize one of them.

Two New NOVA Blogs

As Chad points out, Chris at The Mason Conservative is somewhat new on the Virginia blogscene.

Adding a touch of leftward balance is Mark T. Blair doing business as SouthArlingtonVA.

UPDATE: I almost forgot this one I found at about 4:30 this morning in the comments at Brian Patton's.

Adam Tolbert's blog is not "real new" at apparently 5 months old, but this morning was my first encounter with Smyth County Conservative. It has everything I look for to add to my "favorites" list, It's Conservative, the subject is primarily Virgina Politics, and it is SWVA based. Go by and check out this UVA at Wise student from Saltville.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Tommy Adds New Lines To Same Tired Editorial

Tommy Denton is still beating his dead "Bush Lied" horse. Only now it's our fault for intimidating the Democrats in the House and Senate when it was time for them to vote on the resolution authorizing war in Iraq.
The prewar buildup of impending doom took place during the midterm elections when members of Congress could not risk appearing soft on potential terrorism while the nation was still gripped in the shadow of Sept. 11.

Many Democrats, cowed by the fear they would be perceived as less than patriotic, didn't probe too deeply, trusted the president's word and acquiesced to his hurried demands for war powers.

OK, Tommy, if that's your main argument, tell us who "cowed" these foreign leaders. Were they also scared of the voters like you suggest your Democrat compadres were?
French Foreign Minister Dominique De Villepin:
Right now, our attention has to be focused as a priority on the biological and chemical domains. It is there that our presumptions about Iraq are the most significant. Regarding the chemical domain, we have evidence of its capacity to produce VX And Yperite. In the biological domain, the evidence suggests the possible possession of significant stocks of anthrax and botulism toxin, and possibly a production capability." (United Nations Security Council, 4701st Meeting, New York, 2/5/03)

And this guy,
German Ambassador To The United States Wolfgang Ischinger:
I think all of our Governments believe that Iraq has produced weapons of mass destruction and that we have to assume that they still have that they continue to have weapons of mass destruction. we have not yet seen evidence produced by the inspectors.
(NBC's "Today," 2/26/03)

Tommy, you can argue that your Democrat heroes should have investigated further, or you can complain that their staffs did not search the records deeply enough. But you have only them to blame for not seeing then what you claim to see so clearly today.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Stand Up For Yourself

UPDATE: This Press Release. I have bumped this to the top.

Most conservatives have been wanting only for President Bush to stand up and defend himself and his administration from the rediculous "Bush Lied" accusation.

Well, now he has.

In a response to this in WaPo the White House has released this Press Release "Setting The Record Straight"
Just a sample from the White House Press Release;
The Washington Post Implies That There Have Been No Findings On The Use Of Intelligence. "But the only committee investigating the matter in Congress, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, has not yet done its inquiry into whether officials mischaracterized intelligence by omitting caveats and dissenting opinions. And Judge Laurence H. Silberman, chairman of Bush's commission on weapons of mass destruction, said in releasing his report on March 31, 2005: 'Our executive order did not direct us to deal with the use of intelligence by policymakers, and all of us were agreed that that was not part of our inquiry.'" (Dana Milbank And Walter Pincus, "Asterisks Dot White House's Iraq Argument," The Washington Post, 11/12/05)

But Congressional And Independent Committees Have Repeatedly Reported No Distortion Of Intelligence

* The Bipartisan Senate Select Committee On Intelligence Report "Did Not Find Any Evidence" Of Attempts To Influence Analysts To Change Intelligence. "Conclusion 83. The Committee did not find any evidence that Administration officials attempted to coerce, influence or pressure analysts to change their judgments related to Iraq's weapons of mass destruction capabilities. Conclusion 84. The Committee found no evidence that the Vice President's visits to the Central Intelligence Agency were attempts to pressure analysts, were perceived as intended to pressure analysts by those who participated in the briefings on Iraq's weapons of mass destruction programs, or did pressure analysts to change their assessments." ("Report On The U.S. Intelligence Community's Prewar Intelligence Assessments On Iraq," U.S. Senate Select Committee On Intelligence, 7/7/04, Pg. 284-285)

But, since this is a press release, just how much of the press will actually release it? My guess is, not much.

New Blood From NOVA?

GOPHokie points me to a new Blog, The Mason Conservative. It's new, but good, unlike mine which is 2 months old and mediocre.

Chris has in mind a Republican "dream candidate" that has proven electability in NOVA. Some "New Blood" for the leadership of the Party.

Chris makes some excellent points. Especially as they apply to past Gubernatorial elections, won by both sides.

But a candidate that has proven electability in NOVA would also have to bring much more to the dance.

SWVA and southside are both filled with conservative Democrats. They tend to vote Republican in Presidential elections, but would never consider leaving the Party that Dad and Granddad were affiliated with. At some point in my lifetime the Republican Party, at least on the national level, gained some favor in their sight. This was due primarily to the extreme swerve to the left taken by the Democrat Party on the national level. Local Democrats throughout SWVA kept their heads and remained conservative (see Virgil Goode) or at least worked very hard to appear conservative (see Rick Boucher). This strategy allowed the voters to continue with "tradition" (not a small thing here in SWVA) and continue to vote for "Dad's Party", while feeling justified for voting against that same Party on the national level.

A "proven Republican winner" in Fairfax would have to be able to assure the conservative Democrats in SWVA that he shares their values and that he understands the culture and traditions. This was in some small way even a problem for locally born Jerry Kilgore. Us lifetime Republicans believed that Jerry had not lost his roots, but he wasn't able to convince those conservative Democrats that his time spent in Richmond hadn't somehow changed him. Democrats such as Mark Warner and Rick Boucher face no similar problem. Both are (or were) able to convince these conservative Democrats that they not only represent their ancestral party, but also share their values. Not too hard to do if you're going in somewhat "disguised" to begin with by your familiar Party affiliation.

Your NOVA "dream candidate" may have that ability, I don't know. What I do know is that any Republican campaigning for a regional or statewide office here in SWVA must have that ability.

Good News...

From Chad I see another mention of the possibility of a challenge to Rick Boucher. I keep hearing this, from various sources.

This is good and welcome news to those of us in northwestern Henry County.

Monday, November 14, 2005

This Is Good

Found in this week's edition of the Magnolia Blog Carnival. A mother's daily journal while her son Wayne is in Iraq.

Magnolia Bloggers Carnival

Alabama Improper is this week's hostess for the Magnolia Bloggers Carnival. The Southern Blog Federation, a group of exclusively southern blogs presents this carnival each week on Monday.

Last week's Carnival was filled with some very intersting writing here, and this was also representative of the quality last week. This week it should be just as good.

Martinsville First Virginia City To 'Adopt' Military Unit In Iraq Through ASA-USA

The third story in the Martinsville Bulletin Online Edition is about this organization.

To those of you who have influence in your City, County, or Town Governments, let's try to get more blue stars in Virginia on this map.

Add One More To Jerry's List

Yesterday morning quite early, as he is prone to do, Jerry posted a response to a snippy e-mail he had recieved. Somewhat deep into his response he listed the following SWVA busineses that had either closed or severely cut back operations.
Smyth County alone has lost thousands of manufacturing jobs since 1988. Chilhowie has lost damn near more jobs than it has people.

Add to the losses in Smyth County the losses in Giles, Montgomery, Roanoke, Washington, Carroll, Tazewell, Wythe, Wise, Grayson, Buchanan, Lee, Dickenson, Russell, Pulaski, and Floyd County - add the losses sustained at Spring Ford Industries' knitting mill and Tultex and Buster Brown and Natalie Knitting Mills (all cited in the article) to those at Mack Truck and Ethan Allen and Renfro and Celanese and Johnson & Johnson and Lear and Dan River and American of Martinsville and Virginia Glove and Virginia House Furniture and Lea Industries and ArvinMeritor and Alcoa Wheels and VF Knitwear and Burlington Industries and Hooker Furniture and Stanley Furniture and Thomasville and Bassett Furniture Industries and Pulaski Furniture, and a picture of the devastation emerges.

Well, Jerrry, now we add a large furniture manufacturer in Galax to your list. I learned this afternoon that Webb Furniture will no longer operate 60 days from now.

From This Weeks Enterprise

Bull Mountain Arts To Open Downtown Gallery
Bull Mountain Arts is pleased to announce the opening of an art gallery at the former Depot Emporium on Patrick Avenue in downtown Stuart.
The gallery will be open every Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. When the Historic Star Theatre (located next door) is open, the gallery will remain open until 8 p.m. The gallery will also be open on Sundays from noon to 5 p.m. when there are theatre productions, and may be open at other times during the week.
A variety of media and styles of art works will be available at the new Bull Mountain Arts Gallery.
Bull Mountain Arts is responsible for organizing the annual J.E.B. Stuart Art Show, which showcases the area's talented artists.
The members of Bull Mountain Arts invite everyone to stop by the gallery during business hours.
Traffic Shifts Onto New Route 58 at Meadows of Dan
Weather permitting, on Friday, Nov. 11 around daybreak, eastbound and westbound Route 58 traffic is expected to be switched from the existing two-lane road onto one lane of the newly constructed section around Meadows of Dan in Patrick County.
In the event of inclement weather on Friday, the switch-over will take place on Monday, Nov. 14.
Route 58 drivers in both directions should expect five to 10-minute delays on the new roadway, as flaggers will be stopping traffic. Motorists should use caution, pay attention and be aware of the change in traffic patterns.
Due to construction on the connection from the existing two-lane road to the new four-lane road, traffic must be switched onto the new roadway and stopped for a short period of time.
Highway workers plan to work on the tie-in all day Friday and continue until work is completed, possibly into the early evening hours.
Once the tie-in is completed on Friday, all four lanes of the Route 58 bypass around Meadows of Dan will be opened to traffic.
On Monday, Nov. 14, additional work to widen a curve will begin on Route 58 just west of Cockram's Mill. Flaggers will stop traffic on weekdays from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Route 58 drivers should expect short delays. The curve widening is expected to be completed in late November.

Virginia Blog Carnival XI

Bearing Drift is hosting Volume 1, Chapter 11 of the Virginia Blog Carnival. Go on over and check out all the rides.

And a note of thanks to Chad Dotson, our very capable organizer.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Bureaucracy Lives!

While cleaning up some files I found this. I have no idea where I got it from originally.

History or Bureaucracy?

The US standard railroad gauge (distance between the rails) is 4 feet, 8.5 inches, an exceedingly odd number. Why was that gauge used? Because that's the way they built them in England and English immigrants built the US railroads.

Why did the English build them like that? Because the first rail lines were built by the people who built the pre-railroad tramways, and that is the gauge they used.

Why did they use that gauge then? Because the people who built the tramways used the same jigs and tools that they used for building wagons, which used the same wheel spacing.

Okay! Why did the wagons have that particular odd wheel spacing? Well, if they tried to use any other spacing, the wagon wheels would break on the old, long distance roads in England, because that's the spacing of the wheel ruts.

So who built those old rutted roads? Imperial Rome built the first long distance roads in Europe (and England) for their legions. The roads have been used ever since.

And the ruts in the roads? Roman war chariots formed the initial ruts, which everyone else had to match for fear of destroying their wagon wheels. Since the chariots were made for (or by) Imperial Rome, they all had the same wheel spacing.

The United States standard railroad gauge of 4 feet, 8.5 inches is derived from the specification for an Imperial Roman war chariot.

Specifications and bureaucracies live forever. The Imperial Roman war chariots were made just wide enough to accommodate the rear-ends of two war-horses.

Cut to the present...

The Space Shuttle, sitting on its launch pad, has two booster rockets attached to the sides of the main fuel tank. These are solid rocket boosters, or SRBs.

Thiokol makes the SRBs at its factory in Utah. The engineers who designed the SRBs wanted to make them a bit fatter, but the SRBs had to be shipped by train from the factory to the launch site. The railroad line from the factory happens to run through a tunnel in the mountains. The SRBs had to fit through that tunnel-which is slightly wider than the railroad track, and the railroad track is about as wide as two horses' behinds.

So... A major design feature of what is arguably the world's most advanced transportation system (space shuttle) was determined two thousand years ago by a horse's ass.

Which is pretty much how most government decisions are made.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Work, Work, Work. We Got Work. Get Your Work Here!

Many of you know by now that I have been working to bring a new industry on line in Stuart. Many of you also know that we have been behind schedule.

Well, we will make our first board sometime this week. We recieve our first load of wood on Wednesday. We now have a (almost) completed fiberboard plant. I have a (almost) completed software program to run it. I look for a board to come off the line sometime Thursday, maybe. Watch for pictures. Also, don't expect much activity here, as I expect long days and late nights for the next week as we work the bugs out of my software and hardware.

Anyone in the Patrick, Henry, Floyd, Carroll County area of Virginia and the Surrey County area of North Carolina in need of employment, with a good locally (Hickory, NC) based company, come on by and fill out an application. We are in need of not only production personnel, but also good maintenance people. Mechanics, electricians, electronics technicians are all needed.

Because we "inherited" a lot of existing equipment that came with the physical plant we have been engineering on the fly. We are using much of the stuff that International Paper abandoned when they abandoned Stuart. This has resulted in some major cost savings, but the opposite side of that coin means that we could not spend the up-front time engineering the final configuration of the new plant. Each section of the new facility has been built using as much of the existing parts as possible, requiring us to "trial fit" many segments. We re-used probably 90% of the existing conveyors, and roughly 80% of the existing electrical motor control centers. But in nowhere near their original locations or configuration.

Just because we are finally going into production, my life will not get easier. In fact, the reverse may be true. I am not only the electrical engineer, I am also the only one here qualified as an AutoCAD operator. I have hundreds of mechanical drawings that will need to be consolidated into final drawings. The same applies to my electrical drawings, only more so. Most of the electrical has been done using quick sketches I made on legal pads. Other circuits were verbally described, and exist only in my head.

If you are a qualified AutoCAD operator, I especially invite you to come on down.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

My Little Blue Island

Both Chad Dotson and Kilo at Spark it Up!!! point to this graphic being shown at

Kilo has some interesting insight, but no matter how he tries to frame it, I still have to go home and sleep each night in that little blue island you see just south of the big blue Roanoke island.

I will work to find and support good local opposition for our three "representatives". I want to see Roanoke as the only blue stain on our end of the map next time.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

My Sparse Posting Today...

was not due to sullen pouting.

Although I do feel like having a grand old pity party, it won't happen. Most local contests went my way. I was never too keen on some of Mr. Kilgore's campaign tactics, and I guess I shouldn't be too surprised that it seems to have backfired on him, but I am still in shock regarding the Collinsville Board of Supervisors race.

I am very busy at work. I leave here (Collinsville) at 5:30am, and arrive back somewhere around 7:00pm. Most days I am able to squeeze out a post or two at work and another one or two from here at home in the evening.

I am however, for what it's worth, working on an analysis of yesterday's election results. Look for it before the weekend.

Next week I will work to discover who the Republican Party representatives are in Henry and or Patrick County. Now that I have moved back here it is time to seriously work to remove our three malignant growths that have "represented" us for the better part of two decades.

Excellent Analysis

Hans Mast at The (not so) Daily Me gives us an excellent briefing on the results.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

My Thoughts On Tonights Results

OK, I'm happy with some, disappointed with others.
Lt. Governor___Happy
Attorney General____Happy, I think.
Governor____I'll abide by Waldo's guidelines.

Henry County local;
School Board____happy
City Commonwealth Attorney___I can live with it.
Collinsville Board of Supervisors ____Amazed.
10th District, House____I've lived 14 years with that idiot, another two won't kill me.
Blackberry School Board___happy.

All in all, an acceptable outcome. I would have preferred Kilgore had ran a better campaign. He hurt himself I believe with the emphasis on the death penalty. Other than that, I feel he ran a good campaign. No, I do not believe that last night's visit with Bush made an iota of difference.

I get up each morning at 4:00am. I will update all results at that time. Good night all.

Election Results Will Be Updated Live, Beginning At 7:30

% Precincts Reporting100%
AP has projected Tim Kaine winner with 74% reporting.

% Precincts Reporting100%

Atty General
% Precincts Reportin9999%

Election Results, Henry County And House Races

I will be using information provided by WYAT TV 40 in Martinsville, along with other media sources. As always, the comment section is open.

10th District, House
% Precincts Reporting100%

9th District, House
% Precincts Reporting100%

oops, in the process of updating, I lost all my Henry County stuff. Sorry.

Election Coverage

I'll be posting live, real-time coverage here tonight. My primary focus will be on the local races involving Henry and Patrick Counties, but there will be updated information on other contests throughout the state as I recieve it.

I'm not sure how well this will work, but I'm going to attempt it anyway.

Hollywood Republicans. Oxymoron?

Check out this from Jerminator, good read.
Fedora-pundit: Hollywood Republicans.....could it be?

Monday, November 07, 2005

Birds Do It, Bees Do It, Even Educated Bloggers Do It

Make election predictions, that is.
It seems everyone is making their predictions on tomorrows outcome.

Oh...OK, Everyone is Chad and Steve, but let me dramatize just a little, OK?
UPDATE: Add Shaun Kenney to the list of prognosticators

Now, you get to sit back and savor my enlightened thoughts on this subject...

Due to rounding, all results may not equal 100%

Kilgore 49%
Kaine 48%
Potts 3%

Lt. Governor;
Bolling 55
Byrne 44

Attorney General;
McDonnell 53%
Deeds 46%

10th District;
Armstrong 49%
Young 50%

My Two Final Endorsements

As those of you who have been following this series know I have been having some fun with the Roanoke Times and putting out some serious endorsements of my own.

My Governor endorsement can be found here.
Lt. Governor and Atty. General here.
And probably the most serious to date, at least for my Henry and Patrick County readers,
My 10th District choice here.

Now, at this late time, (sorry, but I am busy during the day), my choices for the local races where I actually live.

Collinsville seat on the Henry County Board of Supervisors;

My choice and recommendation has to be David Davis. Mr. Davis has experience not only on the Board of Supervisors, but also in the "real world" of business management. He has served well during his tenure, and I see no reason not to continue our community's relationship with him. (Note to Wendy and Tommy. I assume Mr. Davis is a Democrat, he has campaign literature picturing him with Mark Warner. Ain't you guys on Campbell Ave. proud of me?)

His opponent, Jim McMillian, on the other hand has consistently refused to state an opinion on any issue likely to face the County. He instead prefers to hide behind the statement that he would vote as the Collinsville District voters as a majority prefered.

This sounds good to those that give it no further consideration, but. And that is one big but.

How does one know what the majority of the Collinsville District actually prefers? Would Mr. MacMillian actually canvass the town before each meeting, with an agenda in hand? Or would he rather have us all come in to each meeting and individually whisper into his ear before each vote. You can see that this campaign position is not only deceitful, it borders on (if not surpassing) stupidity. I urge you all to vote for David Davis instead of this charlatan.

Next, Henry County School Board, Collinsville District.

I know John Anders. Or rather I knew John Anders. But that was two wives ago. (My wives, not John's. As far as I know he is still married to the lovely and gracious Barbara.) The John Anders I remember was an intelligent, dedicated teacher of Spanish, with a great sense of humor. John, if you happen to read this, I finally learned some Spanish. Dos cervezas mas , por favor!

John would make a fine School Board Member, but I'm getting ahead of myself. I haven't endorsed him yet.

I do not know his two opponents, Juanita May and Kathy Rogers.

Both Anders and May have made the basis of their platform improved pay for teachers. That ex-wife I alluded to in an earlier paragraph was a teacher. I know first-hand just how much hard work, especially after hours and weekend work, goes into being an educator. However, that coupled with smaller class sizes seems to be the extent of each candidates ideas.

Ms. Rogers, however, has presented some interesting ideas regarding the follow-up on the recent consolidation of County Schools. Regardless of how one felt concerning consolidation, it's been done. Now we have to make it work. There are still several elementary schools in the County that need to be either replaced or renovated. Ms. Rogers, unlike her counterparts in the Blackberry district, has not jumped to any politically expedient conclusions in this regard.

My choice for Collinsville District School Board seat is....

A toss-up. Because I know John, and am certain that he stands for more than just teacher salaries, I feel he would be a good choice. Again, the John I knew would not be extremely comfortable with a Bulletin reporter and may not have expressed his full thoughts on the office. Vote for either John Anders or Kathy Rogers. I would be comfortable with either one taking over from the extremely dedicated Katherine Wickline.

Carnival of The Magnolias

The second Carnival of the Magnolias is running now at Southern Blog Federation.

This is a group of exclusively southern blogs, and there is some good writing to be found there.

Youths in Rural U.S. Are Drawn To Military

An AP article in the Washington Post features a young man from Martinsville and his choices that led him to enlist.

The article, which goes along quite well with Jerry's post here. Jerry's piece is expanded somewhat here by me.

Fianlly, we have this from Don Surber to tie up all the loose ends.

Local Turnout Predicted At 35-60 Percent

If the local Registrars are correct in their predictions, the 10th District will be even closer than I had originally predicted. With the possible result of sending David Young over the top.

Henry County Registrar Elizabeth Stone is looking for a average turnout at 49% while Ercell Cowan, Martinsville City Registrar foresees only a 35% participation.

The big news is that Patrick County Registrar Dianna Vipperman, citing a contested Board of Supervisors race in the Dan River District predicts a 60% turnout.

Ward Armstrong is highly unlikely to carry Patrick County or Carroll County. With the City turnout being negligible Ward will have to look to Henry County to pick up the slack. If Kilgore does as well in Henry County as I expect, Ward will be a full time litigator in 2006.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Bill Wyatt Gets Kilgore On Monday Morning

Found at Martinsville Daily

I wish I could recieve that station in my office in Stuart.

Roanoke Native

Wayne LaPierre does a great ad. One was just shown during the race broadcast.

I don't know how effective they are, but they are powerful.

Sunday Hunting, Maybe?

Great anectdote!

Virginia Bloggers Carnival VIII

The deadline is looming...

Let's keep Hans up late reading lots and lots of entries.

Rules and guidelines can be found here

Let's Go To The Numbers, From RTD

Mark Holmberg has put together a system for numerically predicting the outcome of this Tuesday's Gubernatorial election. It's humorous and fun and even raises another question...

So, tell me, just where should Virginia be divided if it were like the other north-south states?


I've been busy writing for the past hour or so. I just noticed I'm experiencing a Chadalanche.

Thanks for the link, Chad!

Now For A Serious Endorsement.

10th District House of Delegates;
David Young

Ward Armstrong has represented Henry County for 14 years. Fourteen Years.

I’ll begin by listing his accomplishments and successes in improving the economic climate of Henry, Patrick, and Carroll Counties.

Sure, he’s passed a lot of resolutions. But if you go back and check, most were like this one. His lack of concrete accomplishments may be why his ad campaign consists of attacks on Mr. Young.

Ward, who voted for the Warner, Kaine “Budget Reform” (AKA the largest tax increase in the history of Virginia), even goes so far as to claim that Young will raise taxes. He bases this on the fact that Young did support a meals tax in Patrick County. But to be fair, a meals tax typically hits non-residents in a rural area such as Patrick much harder than it does residents.

He is well known outside of this area as a sophomoric cut-up while he should be doing our serious business. The Martinsville Bulletin rarely prints a story that is not flattering, so most of his constituents may not be aware of his “joke” at the expense of Sen. Jeannemarie Devolites Davis. On the House floor Armstrong, using a voice characterization reminiscent of Bill Clinton, made a reference to a legislative basketball game. In the reference he said that Ms. Davis would be his team’s center and was coming over to his house later to “review the playbook”. Ok, that was bad, but later that evening he reffered to her again saying “she’s no Monica Lewinsky, but she can be taught”.

Mr. Young has served Patrick County soberly and seriously for more than 30 years. First as a teacher in the Patrick County Public School system, and currently sits on the Board of Supervisors for the County.

This will be a close race, maybe the best "edge of the chair" contest on Tuesday night. Ward has only been opposed once in this newly reconfigured district, and he won with 53%. That looks good until you look closer. In 2001 he was opposed by a relatively weak opponent and had strong backing in the Patrick and Carroll County areas from Barnie Day, yet he lost big in Patrick County and even more so in Carroll. Back then he handily carried Henry County, but times have changed. Ward has little to show for his time in Richmond and people here in Henry County are grumbling about him.

Voters in the 10th District have a unique opportunity. With one pull of the lever they can send Ward back into full time law practice and send a message to Roscoe Reynolds as well.

As Promised, My Picks For Lt. Gov And Atty. Gen

First, for Lt. Governor;
Senator William “Bill” Bolling.

Let me start by saying Ms. Byrne and I have something in common. We both have a connection with the state of Utah, she was born in Salt Lake City, and 14 years later I was born in nearby Ogden. (Hey, Dad was in the Air Force, stationed at Hill AFB. If I had been consulted I would have chosen Henry County.)

Our similarity ends with that lone connection. Ms. Byrne is liberal to the point of being near radical. She was heavily involved in Howard Dean’s lunatic Presidential campaign. She is vocally pro-abortion. She is anti-Second Amendment. In short, she is all that most Virginians are not.

Bill Bolling also is not a native Virginian, being from West Virginia. But otherwise he is a solid Conservative choice for Virginians. He has served Virginia well as Senator from the 4th District.

And now, Attorney General;
Bob McDonnell.

This one was a bit harder for me to pick. The Editorial Board almost came to blows in debating the Attorney General choice. I finally made an executive decision and decreed that Creigh Deeds could not be trusted. It’s true. If “Creigh Deeds” does not rhyme with “Weigh Weeds” then nothing else he says can be believed.

That was satire. Seriously, Deeds is a very good candidate, but my choice for McDonnell hinged primarily on his support for and cooperation with Kilgore and Bolling to take a strong stand on eminent domain reform in the Commonwealth.

The issue of the Kilo v City of New London ranks very high with me. Here in Henry County, with the economic situation as it now stands, a local Board of Supervisors could easily be lured into a similar condemnation situation. Taking property via eminent domain should never be used for purely economic benefit. Especially if such taking is for the benefit of a private developer or company. As the law now stands, Virginians are vulnerable to just such an action.

If you’ve spent much time on this blog you may have noticed the link in the left sidebar to a letter from Senator Roscoe Reynolds. Mr. Reynolds thinks the Kilo decision was no big deal. He even writes that it couldn’t even affect Virginia, since it was a Supreme Court decision.

With representation like that, we here in Henry and Patrick County need all the help we can get from the leadership in Richmond.

1958 Chevrolet

I'll be leaving for church within the next 30 minutes or so. After the early service I'll take a nice liesurely drive around the Franklin County countryside. I'll be driving this.

And you won't... GRIN

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Call For Heck Ford

Utica, New York is in Oneida County. Once upon a time it was the Textile Capital of the Country. Today there are no textile plants in Utica, New York. The time came when textiles could no longer be produced profitably in that area.

Henry County, Virginia is just east of the Blue Ridge. Once upon a time was the Tobacco Capital of the Country.

Pre-Civil War Henry County had about 500 tobacco plantations. Factories all over Martinsville cut and pressed this produce into chewing tobacco, making the area the “plug tobacco capital of the world”. Today, I doubt there is more than 500 acres in the entire County of 444 square miles planted in tobacco. All was well with the world until R. J. Reynolds Company began buying and closing tobacco companies in Martinsville and Henry County.

The area’s economy moved somewhat easily from tobacco to furniture, with J.D. and Charles Bassett and Thomas Stanley leading the way. Next came the area’s real and true savior, Hezekiah “Heck” Ford. Mr. Ford, known in local legends as “the one man Chamber of Commerce” moved the Country’s textile industry from Utica, New York to Henry County Virginia.

Our local economy has lately found itself in the position that the people of Utica found themselves in the early part of the previous century. That being the fact that textile products can no longer be profitably produced here in Henry County. Roughly 100 years ago our friends in Utica were faced with the same dilemma we now have to deal with.

We now find ourselves in need of another Heck Ford. Someone who can work the “magic” of getting a new industry established in the area that can take the place of textiles. And no, it must not be another Call Center. It will have to be a real diverse industry that requires the abilities of many people with many skills.

The loss of any individual industry should not be the death knell of an area, if there can be a fallback industry to take it’s place. Just look at Utica, New York as an example.

Heck Ford, where are you now that we really need you?

Briefly Put II*

The military conflict commonly referred to as "the Civil War" was not. Not a civil war, that is. According to Webster a "civil war" is a battle for the control of a single country. Our "Civil War" was not such a battle. It was instead a struggle for one faction to secede from the whole. I don't know what other name should be applied, but it is obvious to me that the term we have been using has been inaccurate.

*A recurring item that will reflect thoughts that come to me as they will. Not necessarily related to any other current post.

As An Addendum To Jerry

Jerry, at From On High has this post today. Very powerful writing that I won't even attempt to condense here, just go read it for yourself.

I do, however want to add a couple of pictures to go along with his story. At the right is the now closed Fieldcrest Mills plant in Fieldale. Benjamin Franklin Mebane originally founded Fieldcrest in 1898 in the area of Leaksville, Spray, and Draper North Carolina now consolidated into the city of Eden. In 1910 Mr. Mebane was undergoing hard financial times and sold the mill to Marshall Field and Company, which renamed the company as Fieldcrest Mills.

In 1919 Marshall Field built the core of the mill you see here. In 1927 Marshall Field bought a large acreage in what is now Fieldale in Henry County and established a hunting lodge. The town of Fieldale grew around this mill and enjoyed the business of important visitors to the hunting lodge. Fieldale was growing so swiftly that the first paved road in Henry County was that portion of SR 57 that runs from Fieldale to Martinsville.

Fieldcrest Mills eventually bought Cannon Mills and was in turn bought by Pillowtex. In 2003 Pillowtex filed for bankruptcy and closed all operations, not just the Fieldale mill.

From the July 30, 2003 Martinsville Bulletin;

In an already depressed local market, jobless workers, car repossessions, mortgage defaults and personal bankruptcies are real threats, said Hairston.

And the impact of the plant's closing is not limited to employees.

A stone's throw up Field Avenue from the mill is Fieldale Community Center. The center, which also is home to some Fieldale Elementary School classes, drew many of its resources from Fieldcrest, getting maintenance help, electricity, water, chemicals for pool treatment and other supplies from the mill, said Director Buster Ferguson. Ferguson added that he does not see how the center can survive the loss of those resources.

Across the street from the community center are Fieldale Grocery & Grill and Teresa's School of Baton and Dance.

Noted for its chicken and dumplings, Fieldale Grocery & Grill did 35 percent of its business with Fieldcrest employees, said store owner Denton Boardwine.

Our next picture is the really sad sight of the J.D. Bassett Manufacturing Company plant in downtown Bassett in the midst of demolition. This demolition has been ongoing in fits and starts for about two years now.

An interesting story I have heard, but can’t verify is that a company in England originally contracted to demolish the plant, partially in exchange for the wooden posts and beams in some of the original parts of the plant. It was assumed they were chestnut, or at least mostly so with the remaining wood being red oak. Obviously the salvage value would be great. The wood turned out to be mostly poplar with a smattering of white oak and the English company just withdrew back to England.

Next we have the original Bassett-Walker Knitting Plant.. Originally the Virginia Underwear Company, it was opened in 1928 by Sam Walker. Later, the Bassett family, looking to find employment for the wives of the men employed at the furniture factories, worked with Sam to create Bassett-Walker Knitting. Later sold to Vanity Fair, the company folded in 2001.

While researching this I came upon some other interesting stuff. Look for a future post (I'll try to have it together by tomorrow) that will expand upon this information.

My Ego-Dorsements

As promised, here are my endorsements for Tuesday's election;

First, the statewide offices.
  • For Governor I endorse Jerry Kilgore.
My reasons here are many, but I base it primarily on two items, fiscal responsibility and law enforcement. Kilgore was inaugurated into Virginia politics as the Secretary of Public Safety under George Allen's administration. There he led the way in parole reform and juvenile justice reform. It is obvious from Jerry Kilgore's biography that he came into statewide politics by way of being truly concerned with the state of the State.

By comparison, Tim Kaine got into Virginia Politics in a calculated way. The son-in-law of former Governor Linwood Holton, and non-native Virginian, Kaine has taken the predictable route of Councilman, Mayor, second tier candidate.

His performance as Mayor of Richmond is one of my major objections. I will never accept a candidate that uses taxpayer monies to fund a protest expidition. I don't care what the cause, or how noble the effort. Taxpayer money should never be used in such manner. Tim Kaine attempted just such a scam on Richmond's taxpayers, but was caught before he could realize his goal.

Jerry Kilgore has been consistent throughout his political career. Mr. Kaine, on the other hand, would have us believe that while he is morally against capital punishment he would "follow the law" and carry out any death penalties imposed during his watch. What he doesn't tell you is that he could "follow the law" and effectively eliminate the death penalty during his tenure. As Governor he can commute any or all death penalty warrants that cross his desk. He has been on record as being against the death penaly as matter of policy, but now wants you to believe it is merely a "pesky little religious objection".

Next Post, Lt. Governor.

Briefly Put...

Sometimes I get a little "brain hiccup" and the idea for a short post occurs to me. I have decided to act upon these at the time they occur, else I tend to forget and they never get posted. This is one such hiccup.

I'm going to steal the name for this recurring item from the Roanoke Times. I feel justified in this blatant thievery because they have convinced me theirs should instead be named "Briefly Thought..."

While doing some research and writing an article that will be an accompanyment to this story from Jerry I was reminded of a past Christmas Bonus I recieved.

Once upon a time I was working as an electrican for a company that must remain nameless. The owner at the time I was employed there is deceased now, and I see no point in naming him since I considered him then, as now, a very good man. (Just really tight.) Anyway, a few weeks before Christmas one year I noticed a $25.00 addition to my weekly paycheck. Cool, I thought, but what is this? I went to the office manager and asked and was told that it was my Christmas Bonus. OK, not much, but still, it WAS a bonus so I was happy. A couple of weeks later upon opening my pay envelope I noticed a $25.00 deduction. I again went to the office manager to ask for an explanation. "Oh", she said, "that's for Bill and Mary's (the owners, but not their real names) Christmas gifts".

Somehow that's not what I envisioned when I first heard "What the Lord giveth, the Lord taketh away".

Friday, November 04, 2005

For What It's Worth

I have been having some fun lately with Tommy Denton's and Wendy Zomparelli's "egodorsements". Now it's my turn.
Look here tomorrow for my endorsements. This is meant especially for my Henry and Patrick County readers. (Yes, I mean both of you, listen up!)

Kilgore Campaigns In Roanoke

I have said in previous posts that The Roanoke Times does have some fair and balanced reporters. Here is Mason Adams reporting on Jerry Kilgore's visit to Roanoke.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Fear And Loathing In Roanoke

From today's lead editorial;
"Such shameful demagoguery should not be rewarded at the polls".
Actually, such shameful demagoguery should not be rewarded at the newstand.

The other editorial today reads as though it was cut and pasted straight from the MoveOn discussion board. Other than that statement it does not rise to a level worthy of comment. Couple this editorial with the mindless drivel found in the "Briefly Thought" bit at the bottom of the page and one comes to the conclusion that whoever was responsible for these needs a remedial writing course.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Is It Friday Yet?

It's been a busy day. I have not even had time to read my favorite blogs all day, much less post anything myself.

But no worries! Kilo has been picking up the slack.

Several good posts over there today.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Laurence, Meet Phil...

About once every couple of weeks, Laurence Hammack writes the same story.

I'm beginning to wonder if he is actually Phil Connors....

Alito Leans Right Where O'Connor Swung Left

From a story in the Washington Post, it seems that both sides will take off the gloves for this one.
O'Connor "has been a moderating voice on critical civil liberties issues ranging from race to religion to reproductive freedom," said Steven R. Shapiro, national legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union. "Judge Alito's nomination . . . therefore calls into question the court's delicate balance that Justice O'Connor has helped to shape and preserve."

"With this nomination, Bush is saying 'Bring it on!' " said John C. Yoo, a former Bush administration Justice Department official. "There is no effort to evade a clash with Senate Democrats. That's why conservatives are so happy."
Although the ACLU calls O'Connor's presence a "delicate balance", I (as no legal scholar at all) have seen instead a dreadful inconsistency in some of her rulings. Apparently Judge Alito felt the same in 1991 when interpreting O'Connor's "undue burden" qualification.
In the 1991 case, Alito joined two other judges in upholding various abortion regulations the Pennsylvania legislature had adopted. But he was the only member of the panel who thought the law's requirement that married women must notify their husbands before having an abortion was not an "undue burden" as O'Connor had defined the concept.

In an opinion that never called for the overruling of Roe or even spoke negatively of it, Alito said that the spousal-notification law would be all right -- in part because it made an exception for cases of spousal abuse.

However, Alito had guessed wrong about O'Connor's meaning. When the case came to the Supreme Court in 1992, she joined a five-justice majority that reaffirmed Roe and ruled that the spousal notification law constituted an undue burden.
It will be interestying to see the Democrats in the Senate work on this one. They will each proclaim the right to abortion will be forever destroyed with an Alito confirmation. Yet they and everyone else on both sides of the "hot button" issue knows that the truth is simply not in that statement. The question of abortion, if Roe v Wade is overturned, will revert to State Legislatures. Some will outlaw the procedure, only to be overturned by their own Supreme Court. Others will liberalize even further, maybe to be overturned. Others still will maintain pretty much the status quo.

Relax Schumer, Kennedy, et al, there is no Boogy Man here.

Briefly put...

Most days the piece at the bottom of the editorial page should instead be titled Too Briefly Thought... Today is one such day.

A little help for todays author.

Look up "confiscatory"
and then
Look up "voluntary".

I'm sure that Wendy will approve a purchase order for a dictionary for the editorial staff, maybe all you have to do is request one.

If she refuses, I'll even provide you guys with one, just drop me an e-mail and one will be on it's way.

The Rules Are "Flexible" On Campbel Ave

Today's leading editorial calls for the firing of Carl Rove, mainly because his counterpart on the Vice President's staff has been indicted. Not convicted, indicted. Not Carl Rove himself. Someone who held a similar position.
From Roanoke Times 11/1/05;
A president who prizes loyalty and personal relationships above all else, Bush is even more prone to the suffocating insularity that often plagues second-term presidents.

It won't be easy for him to shake things out. But he should. He should fire Rove, put Cheney -- who was implicated, but not charged, in the indictment -- on a short leash and bring in untainted advisers with a fresh perspective.

And far less penchant for deception.
Just three days ago, however, The Roanoke Times endorsed a candidate for Sherrif who is facing very credible charges in a Federal sexual discrimination lawsuit.

Of course George McMillan, Roanoke Sherrif and incumbent candidate, is a Democrat. That would seem to me to be the major difference.

From Wendy's pompous commentary explaining the endorsement process;
Our endorsements aren't blithe accolades. Everyone has weaknesses, and we try to make it clear to voters both what they will and won't get from the candidates we think are best. In some races, when no candidate offers real leadership, we don't endorse at all.
This would seem to me to have been one of those occasions for no endorsement at all. As it stands, it merely looks like the bias Ms. Zomparelli claims exists only in the mind of the reader.