Deb took the wheel of Mercy yesterday for our trip to and from The Mountain. She was happy to drive and I was grateful for the break. Riding shotgun gave me a chance to absorb the scenery for the first time in a while, and I took the opportunity to record some video.
The clips I’ve posted here were captured after we left the state highway south of Yellville. The first minute or so is a stretch of the winding county road; second is a section of the gravel road that brings us to the base of The Mountain; and last is the beginning of the dirt road up The Mountain itself.
Putting that video together this morning reminded me what a pleasure the short drive is, even on a gray day. I suppose it’s obvious only to us.
I was sent to summer camp as a kid. Situated on 100 rolling acres in Carroll County, Ohio, the place was my first real exposure to life in the outdoors.
My fellow campers and I, in groups of a dozen or so, would be led on an all-day hike once or twice during a week-long session. I remember being drawn to the sedimentary-rock ledges that dotted the wooded hills, a geological curiosity that’s stayed with me to this day. Scrambling around on The Mountain now, whether in the Ranger or on foot, the scene it presents is a gift to the little kid in me — boulders and ledges everywhere I turn.
Deb, my West Virginia girl, shares my fascination. We’re attracted to the same formations, linger over the same features, pick up the same rocks.
The best joys are the simple ones.
“I have no idea what he was talking about. One of the things you do in hearings, is you have to sit there and look attentively at people you know have no idea what they’re talking about.”Clarence Thomas, U.S. Supreme Court Justice, commenting on questions posed by the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee (now the occupant of the Oval Office) during his confirmation hearings in 1991.
The current occupant of the Oval Office will get to nominate a SCOTUS justice. During his 2020 Basement Campaign he promised that if he got the chance to do that, it’d be a black woman. Recently he’s “doubled down,” as they say, on that pledge.
We should expect conservative presidents to pick (presumably) conservative jurists, and we’ll always get the opposite from leftist executives like Daffy McHairsniffer. But to narrow the field by identity before considering qualifications — irrespective of race or gender — is breathtakingly anti-American.
I remember vividly my father once telling me, with great pride, that when he was a kid one of the Guernsey calves on their farm went to the State Fair and was judged “the best calf in the state of Ohio.” I thought about what he said, then responded,
“Don’t you mean it was the best calf at the State Fair?”
He didn’t much like that. (He raised me to question everyone but him.) My characterization was, however, more accurate, and he knew it.
The next SCOTUS nominee will almost certainly come from among federal judges, about 5% of which are black women. That eliminates from consideration 95% of the federal bench, regardless of ideology or judicial philosophy.
Think about it this way — if an employer tried to pull racial shenanigans like that and it became a federal case, the high court would rule the practice discriminatory.
Let’s disabuse ourselves of the notion that this charade has anything to do with “equality.” The other day I heard Tucker Carlson allude to “the casual racism of affirmative action,” and this nomination will be no different. Call it what it is.
But one thing’s certain about the nominee — she’ll be the best calf at the State Fair.
This also would be a good time for a brief history lesson on the current occupant of the Oval Office. He chaired the Senate Committee on the Judiciary from 1987 to 1995, a dubious tenure that saw him defame two Republican presidents’ SCOTUS nominees. He “Borked” one and shamelessly orchestrated, in the words of the other, “a high-tech lynching for uppity blacks who in any way deign to think for themselves, to do for themselves, to have different ideas.”
His questioning in 1991 of nominee Clarence Thomas on matters of “natural law,” duplicated in a stunningly stupid WaPo op-ed at the time, was idiocy for the ages, solidifying his reputation as the slimiest of dunces.
And now he and his cabal will tap the next justice. I’m thankful that Trump got his three picks.
The time has come for me to issue another caution, this one different than others I’ve offered here on Ubi Libertas Blog. It has to do with the state of the country as well as the dynamics of the political climate.
Look around. America’s borders are wide open. Our children are being indoctrinated, not educated. Roads and highways are crumbling. Police officers are being hunted.
For any American with a soul, it’s a troubling landscape. For any American with a brain, the reasons are obvious.
The anti-American Left, as it’s seized influence and perverted culture, created these and countless other “crises.” Aiding and abetting the invasion of millions of illegals feeds its appetite for political power. Usurping parents’ control of children, through State-run institutions and craven unions, cultivates groupthink and sustains the Entitled Class. Pouring tax dollars into social engineering — “diversity” initiatives, e.g. — has crippled infrastructure. Coddling criminals and “de-funding” public safety have poisoned community after community.
Culpable as the Left is for manufacturing those problems, it’s more than willing to supply the solutions — I could argue, in fact, that it’s the whole point. No, I’m not saying that the regime took out that bridge in Pittsburgh this morning. What I’m saying is that the current occupant of the Oval Office won’t “let a crisis go to waste” to press his buffoonish take on infrastructure.
What prompts today’s warning, specifically, is what’s rightly being called “a war on cops.” We’ve seen a disturbing spike in line-of-duty casualties, including ambushes and assassinations. Behind that trend, of course, are many factors — reduced force size (due to resignations, retirements and flagging interest in the profession) and “progressive prosecution” (which effectively decriminalizes crime and emboldens the evil that walks among us) — all attributable to the Left.
But don’t worry, a solution is on the way. They’re laying the groundwork already by repeatedly invoking “gun violence” and “illegal guns” and “smart gun laws.” They say things like, “The system has failed us” and “We must come together to defeat ya-da ya-da, ya-da.”
Why don’t the enemies of Liberty move on gun control now? Simple — more cops must die before they’ll have sufficient momentum and public sentiment. So they bide their time, waiting for their abominable public policy to create critical mass.
I’m not implying that Democrats would rather have “gun control” later than save cops’ lives now — I’m saying it outright.
That’s just one illustration of what’s afoot in America. It’s insidious, but it’s also obvious.
And that’s my caution for today — for cryin’ out loud, pay attention. Watch the news and resist the urge to unplug from information about events that could rock your world in the blink of an eye.
Don’t wait ’til you hear the train whistle to get off the tracks.
It’s coming. Put your affairs in order.
Take care of yourselves, Patriots. Stay calm. Stay sharp. Stay free.