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Thursday, December 28, 2006

Waldo's Blogroll

Waldo's Virginia Political Blogroll-

"A totally biased and unreasonable list of blogs that I think you might enjoy reading that expands on the list in the sidebar of my own blog."

He also adds this

I reserve the right to add or remove any site from this blogroll at any time, for any reason or no reason at all, because it is my blogroll. For an exhaustive list of Virginia political blogs, see BlogNetNews.

Waldo has promised to thin the blogroll down in the days to come. I had hoped he would take me up on my offer to keep VPB and I would pay him to host and not to edit.

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Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Draft Chad Dotson?

Yes...That is right. Watch The Direction for details.

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Join Now!

Bloggers For Censorship-Join Now!



The Howler


The Libby progress

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Tuesday, December 26, 2006

I can appreciate this....

Only four Reps attained a perfect voting record. These guys voted 1214 times, never missing a vote in two years. Virginia's own Bob Goodlatte is one of those.

Congressman's perfect voting record
Virginia Congressman Bob Goodlatte, R-Roanoke, is rightly perceived as a rubber stamp for President Bush. But the Shenandoah congressman earns our respect after The Washington Post found this week that he was one of only four members in the U.S. House of Representatives to have a perfect voting record for the 109th Congress. That means Goodlatte was present for all 1,214 votes recorded over the past two years. Only Reps. John Kline, R-Minn.; Frank Upton, R-Mich.; and Dale Kildee, D-Mich., can make the same claim.
It helps that Goodlatte seldom faces real opposition in the conservative Shenandoah Valley and doesn't have to spend much time fundraising and campaigning for re-election. The cash and the votes just flow right in.

Notice they had to throw in the rubber stamp line. The bottom line is these men deserve our applause for their rare work ethic. Spark it Up HQ salutes them.

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Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

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Sunday, December 24, 2006

A perfect Christmas Eve

The rush is over so Wise Girl and I can hit the couch in the glow of the tree sipping on eggnog. Hey Alton, the cats like it too! I hope everyones Christmas eve is perfect like ours. Enjoy!


Slapped with reality, Waldo threatens to take his ball and go home.

Updated links at end of post.

The story is that Waldo banned GGD from the Virginia Political Blogs page for this post. Waldo was offended at the images and GGD's cry for dialog. GGD writes:

This is no game. We need open and honest dialog about Islam and terrorism.”

The polls I linked to here show that GGD is not alone in his thinking. Waldo calls the post “pornography.” That is really stretching it. Is this picture from the Holocaust pornography?

Will I be banned also? Waldo has no problem linking a picture of a Dead Baby. Are we really seeing objective editing or partisanship? The Dog slapped us with reality, just like pictures of the holocaust and dead babies. It is clear Waldo is only offended by the right leaning blogs. Of course prophylactic poster boy FT Rea jumps in defending Waldo. You remember FT Rea the Macaca shirt salesman. The one who called everyone who questioned Jim Webb's pornographic lines “book burners and knuckle draggers.” The champion of free speech! Amazing stuff guys.

The VPB site is owned by Waldo. He can do with it as he pleases. He should change the name to Waldo's Selective Political Blogs-What I think you should see. Because just like Bill O'Reilly, Waldo is looking out for you.

Others blogging about this

Alton makes it clear with Blogging Guidelines For Virginia Political Bloggers. Alton did some good research!

Renaissance Ruminations is asking Where’s the Line? From on High has For the life of me. Cathouse Chat has Kat posting Overreact, much? SWAC Girl unleashes Waldo Censors the Dog.

UCV has Political Porn Or Reality Check? The Red Stater has Goode, Democrats, and Muslims. Check out the posts on The Journal of the Common Man. Bearing Drift has Squeaky's thoughts.

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Saturday, December 23, 2006

Christmas Food for Thought

And the Grinch, with his Grinch-feet ice cold in the snow, stood puzzling and puzzling, how could it be so? It came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes or bags. And he puzzled and puzzled 'till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't before. What if Christmas, he thought, doesn't come from a store. What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more. ~Dr. Seuss

The mercy of our God is very tender, and heaven's dawn is about to break upon us, to give light to those who sit in darkness and death's shadow, and to guide us to the path of peace. ~Luke 1:78-79 TLB

The fact of Jesus' coming is the final and unanswerable proof that God cares. ~William Barclay

Christmas is the day that holds all time together. ~Alexander Smith

Christmas, my child, is love in action... When you love someone, you give to them, as God gives to us. The greatest gift He ever gave was the person of His Son, sent to us in human form so that we might know what God the Father is really like! Every time we love, every time we give, it's Christmas. ~Dale Evans Rogers

Love is what's in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen. ~Author unknown, attributed to a 7-year-old named Bobby

There has been only one Christmas - the rest are anniversaries. ~W.J. Cameron

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Concern About Islamic Extremism and Virgil Goode

With the left in a macaca frenzy over Virgil Goode's letter, these numbers reveal he is not alone in his concerns. The Pew Poll can be found here. There is a lot of info at that link. Here are two charts I found interesting.

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Christmas Busy-ness

Christmas is the season where we tend to run around focusing on to-do lists and not so much on the people we are doing those things for. Kilo and I have left the kitchen long enough to wish for each of you a time of refocusing on what is truly important this season. The gift is not nearly as important as the person whose name is on the tag . This year as you are exchanging gifts and pleasantries give a bit of yourself, share the warmth and love that you are feeling and watch the busy-ness and frustrations just melt away.

I am reminded of the Biblical story of Mary and Martha in Luke 10:38-41. Jesus had come to their house and Martha was "distracted with all her preparations" instead of sitting and focusing on her guest. When she began to complain about her busy-ness Jesus scolded her for being "worried and bothered about so many things," while Mary "has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her." A gentle reminder that the stuff is not nearly as important or lasting as the people. Focus on those around you this Christmas and watch for the everlasting gift of love to unwrap itself. Merry Christmas from Spark It Up HQ.

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

ODBA Opens the Book

The Old Dominion Blog Alliance-Founded by Chad Dotson, is opening the book and accepting new members. Alton has a great column here. I encourage you right of center Virginia bloggers to sign on! Membership entitles you to some great perks and you can learn the secret handshake. I believe 2007 will hold some good things for the ODBA so get involved today!

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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

VHSL Apologizes to Norton for Stupid Call

I know it is just High School Football, but seeing a young group of boys robbed gets my goat. You can read a little background on the game here. The BRISTOL HERALD COURIER has this:

In a statement regarding a controversial penalty on Dec. 9 with 50 seconds left in the Raiders' 21-20 loss against Riverheads in the Group A, Division 1 title game, the VHSL admitted mistakes were made by the officiating crew.........The statement acknowledged that the Winchester Officials Association, which supplied a seven-man crew for the game, and the official who flagged Stewart admitted the call was incorrect.

He could have admitted that after the call. We will never know why the flag was thrown or the real outcome of the game. Some have said it was the bias against the Lonesome Pine District team. I find that hard to buy into with the dynasty's of Clintwood, Powell Valley, Appalachia, and Gate City's state championship success. It is history now and Norton has this letter as their comfort. I think anything less than the said official being brought to Norton and tarred and feathered will fall short.

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The Virginia Blog Carnival

J's Notes has the VBC up! Click here for some rich bloggy goodness!

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Monday, December 18, 2006

Jim Webb tells Vet's they should have paid his way?

Bearing Drift alerted us that Jim Webb dissed the Veterans. Powerline has this up dated the 16th. They send us to Webb's response here. Get this line from Webb to the Veterans:

"However, the extension of the time period in the election results, which carried forward until Thursday afternoon, was an unpredictable circumstance. And the logistics involved in getting from Northern Virginia to the event and then back again (four hours drive time each way - there was never an offer by the event's organizers to fly me there, or otherwise take care of transportation expenses), would have eaten up the entire weekend."

What a guy!

Vivian has a great post with good some comments.

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The Norton vs Riverheads State Championship Football Game-Norton Robbed!

I put off posting about this. Riverheads won the game 21-20 but the Norton Raiders think they were robbed. Norton is down by 7 and scores with less than a minute left in the game. That puts them in position to kick the extra point to tie or go for two and the win. Flag....The film of the game I watched said unsportsmanlike conduct-excessive celebration. Norton coach Jim Adams asked for explanations and received no answers. The VHSL is addressing the complaints. There are two videos here that show the play in question. It sure looks like this call cost the Raiders the game. You can watch and make up your own mind. It is bad to loose like this. Check it out.


What about Duncan Hunter

The least known Republican to make a run for President in 08 is California Congressman Duncan Hunter.

Congressman Duncan Hunter represents California's 52nd Congressional District consisting of eastern and northern San Diego County. He is a Vietnam veteran, who served in the 173rd Airborne and 75th Army Rangers. In 1973, Hunter attended Western State University Law School in San Diego on the G.I. Bill, while also working at farming and construction.......In 1980, he was asked to run against Congressman Lionel Van Deerlin, an 18-year incumbent, where, in a 2-to-1 Democrat district, Hunter won the Congressional seat. (LINK)

This guy has been winning in a 2-to-1 Democrat district since 1980....We better pay attention to what he his doing.

Hunter, outgoing chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, spent Saturday morning pheasant hunting with some veterans and active military members after mixing in some politics at a pancake breakfast. "I believe in a strong national defense, a strong and enforceable border, a two-way street on trade," said Hunter, who was making his first visit to Iowa since announcing his presidential bid in October. (LINK)

His views on trade are interesting and it could be what separates him from other candidates. With his successful record I hope he gets his message out. It is California so he may raise some decent money.

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Chicago Bears

Yesterday's OT win puts the Bears at 12 - 2. The play at times has not been pretty, but goals were achieved.

  • Win Division-Check!

  • Get a bye in playoffs-Check!

  • Secure Home Field advantage throughout playoffs-Check!

The table is set for the Bears and they will dine at home. Meanwhile the Washington Redskins have been eliminated from playoff contention. Those Skin's fans are filling my ears with their doubts about Rex Grossman. The young QB can be a interception waiting to happen. My thought is Rex does not need 300 yard games for the Bears to be successful. The key for Rex - Don't throw interceptions. Turnovers will kill you in the playoffs. I am not as confident as I was in 1985. If Grossman plays smart ball they will be hard to beat. Go Bears!

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Saturday, December 16, 2006

End of The World

Reno's Roadhouse was granted permission to sell alcohol on New Year's Eve by Wise Town Council Monday.
New Year's Eve will fall on Sunday this year. Under normal circumstances alcohol cannot be served on Sunday in Wise. (Back page Coalfield Progress news.) (
link-subscription required)

This is a first in my memory. I think I will pass on a Reno's New Year.

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Friday, December 15, 2006

Christmas Tradtions Part 5

I think Christmas is a time for baking cookies and sharing them with family and friends. Kilo prefers to make candies to share. Actually, this works out quite well at Spark It Up HQ as Kilo stands at the stove stirring and stirring while I feed him fresh from the oven cookies. I am liking this Christmas tradition trade off very much!


2 1/3

cups sugar


cups LAND O LAKES® Butter


cup plus 2 tablespoons water


tablespoons light corn syrup

1 1/2

cups chopped walnuts or pecans, toasted


cup (6-ounces) semi-sweet or milk real chocolate chips (We recommend NESTLE® TOLL HOUSE® Morsels)

Butter 15x10x1-inch jelly-roll pan. Combine all ingredients except nuts and chocolate chips in heavy 3-quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until butter is melted.

Reduce heat to medium-low. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until candy thermometer reaches 300°F or small amount of mixture dropped into cold water forms hard brittle strands (25 to 40 minutes). Stir in 1 cup nuts.

Pour mixture into prepared pan; spread to desired thickness. Sprinkle chocolate chips over hot candy; let stand 5 minutes. Spread melted chocolate evenly over candy. Sprinkle with nuts. Cool completely (at least 3 hours). Break into pieces. Store in airtight container in a cool dry place up to three weeks.



cups sugar


cup LAND O LAKES® Butter


(12-ounce) can evaporated milk


(12-ounce) packages real semi-sweet chocolate chips


(7-ounce) jar marshmallow creme


cups chopped walnuts


teaspoons vanilla

Combine sugar, butter and evaporated milk in heavy 4-quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until mixture comes to a full boil (7 to 10 minutes). Continue cooking, stirring constantly, until candy thermometer reaches 228°F (5 to 7 minutes).

Remove from heat. Gradually stir in chocolate chips until melted. Stir in marshmallow creme until well blended. Stir in nuts and vanilla. Spread into lightly buttered 13x9-inch pan. Cool at room temperature. Cut into 1-inch squares. Store refrigerated.

Next time one of my favorite cookie recipes. Check Out Christmas Traditions Part One, Part Two, Part Three, and Part Four.

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Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Coming and Going

Brian Patton has returned to blogging after a "Sabbatical & Matrimony." Brian tells us about his recent nuptials and the joys of owning a home. Brian writes:

The date, November 4th, was prior to Election Day and just before Congressman Boucher's annual rally in Clintwood, the weekend before the election. Jayne eventually, somewhat hesitantly, agreed to let me cut short the honeymoon so we could get back in time for the rally. I guess going in she knew I would always have a mistress named "Politics."

That is a interesting comment. Wise Girl says "Poor Jayne" I say "Damn Son. Cutting the honeymoon short to see this...Damn Son." Can anyone else see a candidate Patton standing at the podium reciting the above three lines? I can. Droves of Democrats with their "Brian Patton Will Be There For You" signs....I need a tagamet. I do wonder when young Patton will get his feet wet by running for office.

As Brian returns Chris at Spank That Donkey is taking a break. Chris writes:

I am going to have to find other ways to "vent" for the next six months or so. I hear they will be holding elections again... Nov. 07'. Any how, maybe the occasional COC hosting or something.

Everyone needs a break. HDW has a post about having fun while blogging. It is a good read. He writes:

"Blog about what you like. Having fun is the key to lasting as a blogger."

There is some good info in the post.

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The Virginia Blog Carnival #64

Alton has the VBC is online! Beat the rush! get some now before it runs out.

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Monday, December 11, 2006

The Direction

This weeks Video Blog is up at The Direction. If you have not watched Ken's show about Virginia politics and blogs you are missing out. Lots of blog talk and good issues. Give it a look and tell Ken what you think.

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Blog Roll

I have been working on the blog roll and slowly updating links. I added a Virginia blog category that is listed under the ODBA. The Virginia Blogs listed are all ones I read. They are not in any kind of order or labeled left or right. I don't rate blogs! have added Dogwood Pundit, J's Notes, Jim Patrick's Shenandoah, Republitarian, RightsideVA, Rule .303, Smyth County Conservative, BadRose, Vivian J. Paige, Deo Vindice, SWAC Girl, Black Velvet Bruce Li, Southwest by Southeast, The Ward View, Conaway, and many others with more to come. I apologize for taking so long to get this done.

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Sunday, December 10, 2006

Christmas Traditions Part 4

I am one of those people who can listen to Christmas music all year long. I prefer the traditional songs of old but this newer song remains one of my very favorite.

I can not think of a more perfectly wonderful cake to bake in honor of that day we celebrate the birth of the Holy infant who brings peace and joy and hope to a world so in need.

Waldorf Astoria Cake

2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
½ C. Crisco
1 ½ C. sugar
3-4 oz red food coloring
2 C. flour
1 T. cocoa
1 tsp. salt
1 C. buttermilk
1 Tbsp. vinegar
1 tsp. soda

Cream together eggs, vanilla, Crisco, sugar and coloring. Sift together flour, cocoa, and salt. Add this to creamed mixture alternating with the buttermilk. Beat until fluffy. Fold in vinegar and soda. Do not beat. Bake in (2) 9" round cake pans greased and floured at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes.


Cook 1 ½ C. milk, ¼ and 1/8 C. flour over low heat until thick-then let cool.

Beat at high speed: 1 ½ C granulated sugar, ¾ C. Crisco and 1 ½ sticks butter.

When fluffy add the sugar mixture to the milk mixture and beat until it looks like whipped cream. Spread on cooled cake.

Check Out Christmas Traditions Part One, Part Two, Part Three.

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Saturday, December 09, 2006

Christmas Traditions Part 3

"Christmas gift suggestions:
To your enemy, forgiveness.
To your opponent, tolerance.
To a friend, your heart.
To a customer, service.
To all, charity.
To every child, a good example.
To yourself, respect."
Oren Arnold
"and for your awesome girlfriend, this."

There are certain things that a girlfriend never messes with and one is the traditions between Mother and Son. Kilo's mom makes a very special cake just for him every Christmas. It is so special that I am not allowed that recipe- at least not yet. So that cake is most definitely on the menu but I am a huge fan of chocolate and not such of fan of apples which are all over Kilo's cake, so the debate continues over which chocolate cake we should bake and that makes you the winner as you will get both recipes!

This is a cake Kilo's Grandma used to make:

TRIPLE SIN CHOCOLATE CAKE or THE HERSHEY CAKE as his granny called it (If you think this recipe isn't old, it calls for 5 cent candy bars! This cake is like a great big brownie.)

8 plain Hershey bars
2 sticks butter
4 eggs
2 cups sugar
2 cups chopped nuts (optional) -Kilo prefers pecans
2 1/2 cups sifted plain flour
1/4 teaspoon soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup chocolate syrup

NOTE: you will need parchment paper with this recipe!

Soften candy in double boiler, let cool. Cream butter, add sugar, add eggs. Put candy in. Add soda to buttermilk. Combine nuts, salt and flour. Add alternately with buttermilk. Stir in vanilla and chocolate syrup. Line bottom of pan with greased and floured parchment paper. Bake at 350 degrees for one hour and 15 minutes. When cool, drizzle more chocolate on top or ice with your favorite chocolate icing. Kilo says this is unbelievably rich and more like a giant brownie than a cake, it is so sweet that he adds some Mayfields Vanilla ice cream to calm it all down- imagine that!

I have to admit that this sounds amazing but I question why we must wait till Christmas on this one. I am thinking maybe I will just have to make one of these for that big Chicago Bears game against the Rams on Monday night-hmmm.

Tomorrow my idea of the perfect cake for Christmas! Be sure to check out Part One and Part Two. Good Stuff!

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Friday, December 08, 2006


Poll: Trouble for Clinton, Guiliani Bids

Democratic Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton is popular within her party but could have trouble winning the presidency, according to a poll that also identified potential hurdles within the GOP for former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani.

Clinton is polling at 33% with second place John Edwards at 14%. The top two Republicans are Guiliani with 24% and McCain with 23%. Both republicans beat Clinton 49% to 43%. Clinton may be the party favorite but the poll shows that "Forty-seven percent of registered voters said they would definitely not consider voting for the New York senator." That is a problem.

Guiliani has his woes too.

But when Republicans were informed that Giuliani is "a pro-choice, pro-gun control, pro-gay rights Republican," 47 percent said those traditionally liberal positions would be a major factor in determining how they voted while just 22 percent said they would not be a factor.

Will "pro-choice, pro-gun control, pro-gay rights" doom Rudy? I think so. The gun control issue alone may do that. I am sorry Rudy fans, but I just don't see Rudy getting the nomination.

"For Hillary, it is: She is acceptable to Democrats, but is she electable?" said Marist's Lee Miringoff. "For Rudy, he's electable; but is he acceptable" to Republicans deciding the nomination?"

Indeed...Be Sure to Check out Brownback calls for Family Morals.

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Thursday, December 07, 2006

Sago Report and 12/07/1992

The cause of the explosion at Sago was lightning.

Dennis O'Dell, the labor union's health and safety coordinator,

says lightning was suspected from the beginning. He says a nearly

yearlong investigation ruled out other potential causes.

One miner was killed by the January Second blast and 12 others

were trapped underground for 41 hours. When rescuers reached them,

only one man was still alive. The others died of carbon monoxide

poisoning. (LINK)

I blogged a lot about Sago. Over 30 posts can be found here. One would think working underground that lightning is not a worry. I remember 12/07/1992. The Southmountain mines that is about 5 miles from where I live had a methane explosion killing 8 men. On 06/21/1983 there was an explosion at a Clinchfield mines killing 7 men near McClure Va, near where my uncle lost his life in in a rockfall in 1981. A list of some accidents cam be found here. A memorial page to fallen miners in my area can be found here. I have too many family members listed there. The site also has some pics. Please check it out.

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December 7th, 1941

The U.S. Fleet's Pearl Harbor base was reachable by an aircraft carrier force, and the Japanese Navy secretly sent one across the Pacific with greater aerial striking power than had ever been seen on the World's oceans. Its planes hit just before 8AM on 7 December. Within a short time five of eight battleships at Pearl Harbor were sunk or sinking, with the rest damaged. Several other ships and most Hawaii-based combat planes were also knocked out and over 2400 Americans were dead. Soon after, Japanese planes eliminated much of the American air force in the Philippines, and a Japanese Army was ashore in Malaya.(link)
Text of FDR's speech. Audio Here

Mr. Vice President, Mr. Speaker, Members of the Senate, and of the House of Representatives:

Yesterday, December 7th, 1941 -- a date which will live in infamy -- the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.

The United States was at peace with that nation and, at the solicitation of Japan, was still in conversation with its government and its emperor looking toward the maintenance of peace in the Pacific.

Indeed, one hour after Japanese air squadrons had commenced bombing in the American island of Oahu, the Japanese ambassador to the United States and his colleague delivered to our Secretary of State a formal reply to a recent American message. And while this reply stated that it seemed useless to continue the existing diplomatic negotiations, it contained no threat or hint of war or of armed attack.

It will be recorded that the distance of Hawaii from Japan makes it obvious that the attack was deliberately planned many days or even weeks ago. During the intervening time, the Japanese government has deliberately sought to deceive the United States by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.

The attack yesterday on the Hawaiian islands has caused severe damage to American naval and military forces. I regret to tell you that very many American lives have been lost. In addition, American ships have been reported torpedoed on the high seas between San Francisco and Honolulu.

Yesterday, the Japanese government also launched an attack against Malaya.

Last night, Japanese forces attacked Hong Kong.

Last night, Japanese forces attacked Guam.

Last night, Japanese forces attacked the Philippine Islands.

Last night, the Japanese attacked Wake Island.

And this morning, the Japanese attacked Midway Island.

Japan has, therefore, undertaken a surprise offensive extending throughout the Pacific area. The facts of yesterday and today speak for themselves. The people of the United States have already formed their opinions and well understand the implications to the very life and safety of our nation.

As commander in chief of the Army and Navy, I have directed that all measures be taken for our defense. But always will our whole nation remember the character of the onslaught against us.

No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory.

I believe that I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost, but will make it very certain that this form of treachery shall never again endanger us.

Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory, and our interests are in grave danger.

With confidence in our armed forces, with the unbounding determination of our people, we will gain the inevitable triumph -- so help us God.

I ask that the Congress declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on Sunday, December 7th, 1941, a state of war has existed between the United States and the Japanese empire.


Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Sam Brownback - A Reagan Republican and a clear, consistent, and conservative voice

The Mason Conservative has a good post about Brownback here. The USA Today had a good article about him back in July titled Will Christian right embrace - and support - one of its own? A few lines from the piece:

Big issues like ending abortion, banning same-sex marriage, battling indecency on TV and refusing to fund embryonic stem cell research fuel Brownback's long-shot hopes for the Republican presidential nomination in 2008. Most Americans have never heard of him, but the conservative Christian leaders who play a critical role in the GOP take him seriously.

After delivering what they see as the decisive votes to elect and re-elect George W. Bush, they grumble that social conservatives haven't gotten all they deserved on the issues that matter most to them, especially the campaign for a constitutional amendment to bar gay marriage.

The question for them next time: Support a candidate who has a good shot of winning but a short history on their core issues? Or back a true believer who faces a steep uphill fight?

Time will answer that question. His bio is refreshing. A man with a farming heritage in the heartland of America that supports

Saving and reforming Social Security for current and future generations;

Providing tax relief to working families through ending the marriage penalty and providing marginal tax rate reductions;

Reforming and streamlining the way the federal government does business;

Making the federal tax code flatter, simpler and fairer;

Fighting to protect the most vulnerable in our society: the unborn, the weak, the elderly, and the disabled;

Ensuring that America continues an aggressive war on terror;

Guarding against the erosion of our freedoms and right to govern ourselves. Read more about that here.

Like the MC, I have my doubts as to his electability. While I could support him wholeheartedly, I don't know if the electorate would follow. I do hope Brownback's views make some waves in the upcoming campaign. He will need a strong John Tester type grass roots to be successful. If this man gains the full support of the Christian right he will make some serious waves. Something to think about.

Senator Sam Brownback's Web page is here. His coalition page is here. Pro gun, flat tax...I like what he is selling.Check out Brownback in the News.

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Tuesday, December 05, 2006

The Virginia Blog Carnival

The VBC is up at Cathouse Chat. This is a good one folks, so check it out. Jason will host next week. You can submit here.

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Christmas Traditions Part 2

This is what my family would traditionally have Christmas morning with coffee, hot cocoa or juice. We would nibble away on this while the gift unwrapping began. Because this is so good any time of day and because Kilo actually made my mouth water with his description of his traditional Christmas breakfast, we have come up with a compromise of Cinnamon French Toast Casserole before gifts and Coffee Cake for brunch after the gifts or if I'm lucky there will be so many presents that we will have this in the middle (hint, hint).

Sour Cream Coffee Cake

¾ C. butter
1 ½ C. sugar
2 eggs
1 C. sour cream
½ teas. vanilla
¼ teas. baking powder
2 C. cake flour
½ C chopped pecans
2 T. brown sugar
1 teas instant cocoa mix
½ teas. cinnamon

Cream butter and sugar; add eggs, cream again. Fold in sour cream and vanilla.

Sift together salt, baking powder and flour, fold into creamed mix.

Mix nuts, br. sugar, cocoa mix and cinnamon.

Spoon half the batter in a greased and floured 9 inch tube pan. Sprinkle with half the nut mix. Top with remaining batter and then the rest of the nut mix.

Bake at 350 degrees for 50-60 mins. until toothpick comes out clean. Cool in pan 20 minutes before removing. This cake freezes very well.

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Monday, December 04, 2006

Christmas Traditions Part 1

The Christmas season is now upon us and things are starting to look festive here at Spark It Up HQ. It is becoming increasingly interesting though as Kilo and I have begun discussing our Christmas traditions. I am guessing that he and I will need larger clothes before this holiday has come and gone. It seems that we can both bend some on every "tradition" but the food. In the next few days we will let you in on our "debate" and you can drool over the choices and use the recipes if you like but please no choosing sides here. We do enjoy a good fight!

Christmas morning would not be normal or as scrumptious for Kilo if he did not get a whiff of this casserole baking, with the coffee brewing and the bacon frying.

Cinnamon French Toast Casserole

1/3 cup butter
2/3 cup brown sugar
3 Tbsp white corn syrup or maple syrup
Chopped pecans (optional)
1 loaf cinnamon bread (can use cinnamon raisin bread if desired) - Thomas' brand is good- Kilo likes the cinn. raisin bread best!
1 8 oz. pkg cream cheese
5 eggs
1/4 cup half & half
Powdered sugar

Spray a 9"x13" pan with non-stick cooking spray. Melt butter and add to the pan, along with brown sugar and 2 Tbsp of corn syrup. Mix in pan until the mixture can be spread evenly around the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle with finely chopped pecans if desired.

Divide loaf of bread into halves. Cut half of the loaf into small cubes (about 1" square) and scatter over the brown sugar mixture. Cut cream cheese into cubes and scatter over the top. Top with the remaining bread cut into cubes.
Whisk eggs, half & half, and remaining 1 Tbsp of corn syrup in a bowl. Pour the egg mixture over the bread and press down gently with plastic wrap to make sure all bread is coated. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator overnight. Take out and bake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes until casserole is gently browned and well set.

Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve warm with your favorite syrup topping or fresh fruit.

This sounds amazing I must admit. Tomorrow I will post my traditional Christmas breakfast.

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RPV Advance

Bearing Drift has a Podcast up about the event. Great job JR! They also have links to others blogging the event.

Also check out The Mason Conservative. I agree with what he is saying. We have work to do, but I am still excited.

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Sunday, December 03, 2006

Division 1 and 2 Group A Football

I attended the games last week and posted my predictions. I was correct as Norton beat Rural Retreat 41-20 in the division 1 state semis. They will travel to James Madison University in Harrisonburg to play Riverheads for the State Championship the 9th. Riverheads beat Sussex Central 24-14 to advance. Norton is famous for going upstate and getting beat. This should be a good game. Being from Wise, it is hard for me to root for Norton. With that said, I predict Norton brings a State Championship home next weekend. That is a safe pick for me because if Riverheads wins...I wont be disappointed.

On the Division 2 side I predicted Giles would beat Powell Valley. That was an understatement as Giles crushed the Vikings 49-8. They move on to play Goochland. Giles rushed for over 400 yards. Goochland is undefeated and this should be a great game also. Knowing nothing about Goochland I have to predict the powerful Giles offensive line and running game will continue to bring victory. The fans at James Madison are in for a treat the 9th.

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Friday, December 01, 2006

More on the Pork Rind Scandal

Appalachia Mayor Ben Cooper (D) says guilty 233 times. That process took over 30 mins. He faces a whopping 21 months in jail(???) and $88,000 in court costs. He will be sentenced in early January. Others found guilty in the now famous voter fraud case received sentencing, but no jail time. Get this quote from Cooper's lawyer Patty Church:

"Cooper was "not really a Boss Hogg, and his 'kingdom' was more like Larry, Curly and Moe," she said of a conspiracy that unraveled after a voter complained that she was not allowed to vote at the polls, having been informed she had already voted by absentee ballot. The voter knew otherwise."(LINK)

Heh. I am glad this is about over. The Kingsport Times has this. The Bristol Herald has this. In my first post about this I refused to identify what party Cooper was with. You can read that here. But after some thought I feel it should be known that Cooper ran as a Democrat. Leaving that out would be sloppy of me.

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Chad Dotson takes Court to School

WISE - Chad Dotson and Joey Carico once roamed the halls and classrooms of J.J. Kelly High School as students. On Thursday, they returned to their alma mater to teach today's pupils a thing or two about the court system. Joey Carico has long since traded his marching band uniform for the robe of a Wise County General District judge. These days, the bailiffs call him Joseph. Dotson retired his title as a sports standout. Today, he bears the title of Wise County commonwealth's attorney.

Dotson and Carico gave Wise County's juniors and seniors a close look at how court works by holding a real session in the school auditorium. It was the first time a court session has been held in a Virginia school, Dotson said.

He and assistant prosecutor Suzanne Kerney-Quillen decided several months ago to begin the Courtroom to the Classroom program in local schools. The idea is to show students who are edging toward legal adulthood that actions have serious consequences once they reach 18.

More than 300 students from the county's six high schools and J.I. Burton in Norton participated. The chatting stopped once the court officers took the stage.(Read it All)

Pretty cool stuff if you ask me. Over 300 students from area high schools were in attendance. This is a great way to introduce young people to the court system in a true professional way. This program may have affected some students heading down the wrong path. It also could have persuaded some students to pursue a career in law enforcement or another law related field. Hats off to Mr Dotson and his staff!

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