Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Every day is 4th of July in Gaza

The only difference to an American 4th of July is that the Israeli fireworks are going off among Gazans. Open the link and ask yourself, why is woman at bottom smiling? And why is US financing these crimes against humanity? Here is the full story:

"The world has reacted with outrage after journalist Allan Sorensen posted a photograph of the so-called “Sderot cinema”, which showed Israelis flocking for a good view of the bombing, with one woman winking at the camera and giving the thumbs-up as deadly rockets light up the night sky.

Sorensen’s newspaper, Denmark’s Kristeligt Dagblad, reported that the event attracted more than 50 people who had turned the hill into something that resembled “the front row of a reality war theatre”.

It said people were celebrating the deadly light show by cheerfully sharing popcorn, smoking hookahs and applauding the bomb blasts."

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BsICixqCQAAT17z.jpg

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Existential threat to Israel? Israeli crimes against humanity

Israel always trots out the imagined Palestinian existential threat to Israel's existence for "mowing the grass," their periodic destruction of Gaza's pitiful infrastructure and pitiful people, mainly civilians, to keep the Palestinians In Gaza and the West Bank terrorized. Both the US government and mainstream media promote the false narrative that Gazans woke up one day and decided to precipitate self destruction by lobbing a few rockets into Israel. Bunk. An honest review of the facts reveals that Israel used the June 12 killing of three Israeli teens, never linked to Hamas, to launch attacks and inflict terror against Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank. These consisted of 110 bombing raids, a military incursion, 17 killings, mass arrests -- all before Hamas fired its first rocket on July 7. Part of Israel's terror campaign involved whipping up Israeli citizens to rampage against Palestinians, including burning alive one Palestinian.

But this latest grass mowing in Gaza is causing world wide revulsion in the civilized world, increased impetus to boycott Israel, and even greater instability in the Middle East and hatred against the US for being Israel's chief enabler of its inhumane subjugation of the Palestinian people. Now Israel is facing an occupied population which is increasingly ready to die quickly with human dignity by fighting back when no nation will take up their cause, rather than die from the slow genocide practiced against them. Ultimately, Israel's refusal to end their policy of extending their one state solution of a Greater Israel with no room, no food, no resources, no jobs and no humanity for the Palestinians will be their undoing. That, and not ineffective rockets fired by the doomed in the world's largest open air prison, is the existential threat to Israel.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Book Pick: The Arsenal of Democracy, by A.J. Baime

Subtitled 'FDR, Detroit, and An Epic Quest to Arm an America at War', this book reveals the astonishing story of the Ford Motor Company's 1,500 acre Willow Run plant which churned out 8,685 massive four engine B-24 Liberator bombers between 1941 and 1945. Willow Run was the largest and most complex symbol of how American manufacturing, led by the automotive industry, turned Detroit into the 'Arsenal of Democracy', producing 30% of all US military equipment during WWII. But 'Arsenal' is also a saga of the Ford family and the battle for the soul of Ford Motor Company which nearly collapsed under aging and debilitated founder Henry Ford, a virulent anti-Semite, idolater of Adolf Hitler who presented him with the Grand Cross of the German Eagle Medal, and ardent foe of FDR. It was Henry's brilliant son Edsel and chief of production Charlie Sorensen, who, early in 1941, devised on a sheet paper the concept of a nearly mile long plant to build the giant B-24's on an automobile style assembly line at the scoffed at target of one per hour. The B-24's were being ground out virtually hand made like Rolls Royce cars by their developer Consolidate Aircraft. FDR called for an "Arsenal of Democracy" to crank out 60,000 planes to win the war. Willow Run was Edsel and Sorensen's answer. The obstacles to building Willow Run, 27 miles from downtown Detroit, the adjoining airfield, and Bomber City, the 400 acre facility to house many of the 80,000 workers who toiled on the B-24 assembly line, were herculean. While all this was going on, Edsel literally worked himself to death in 1943 fending off both the opposition of his now delusional father and the machinations of Henry's security chief Harry Bennet who commanded a thousand strong security force which terrorized auto workers and executive alike, including Edsel and Sorensen. As a War bird fanatic who has flown on one of the two remaining flying of the 18,462 B-24's produced (47% by Ford), I have an even deeper appreciation of this magnificent airplane and the visionary folks who made its mass production possible.

Did Ford hit the promised one B-24 per hour? Who backed down when Bennett and John Bogus (the Ford family's opposition security chief) drew guns on each other the day Bogus came to fire Bennett? Read for yourself. 'Arsenal of Democracy' is more exciting than any fiction that can be imagined. 

Thursday, July 24, 2014

A valid parallel

Not sure what is worse...Israel's crimes against humanity in Gaza, or US funding and supporting it out of cowardice to the power of the Likud wing of the Israel Lobby. Watching the slow extermination of the Gazans reminds me of the doomed in the Warsaw Ghetto.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Pro lifers forcing distressed women to 'Do It Yourself'

Poor women seeking an abortion in conservative states are caught in a TRAP - Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers. Texas, Louisiana, and Alabama, among others, have enacted laws that either close abortion clinics or make the procedure so expensive and time consuming that women without means are reverting to the Bad Ol' Days of do it yourself. They are increasingly going back to the back alley for an unlicensed, unregulated provider or seeking misoprostol, an abortion inducing drug up to 88% effective if taken in the right dosage. Unfortunately, the TRAP police have dried up the supply of this drug, highly popular in Latin American countries where abortion is illegal in all circumstances. They've even forbidden the few abortion and reproductive clinics surviving in a hostile political and religious climate from giving instructions on identifying counterfeit misoprostol pills and proper usage of the good ones. While their strategy has partially achieved their goal of preventing all abortions, they've mainly induced untold needless misery for the poor, including death and mangled physical and mental health. Do it yourself should be reserved for building that new backyard deck, not matters of life and death.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Allies don't let allies commit crimes agaisnt humanity

As we watch in horror Israel's latest "mow the grass" bombing and invasion of the world's largest open air prison in Gaza, we should note that much of Israel's weaponry is courtesy of Uncle Sam's $3.1 billion in annual aid, most of it for military resources. America pretends to be a neutral broker working for Palestinian and Israeli peace, and creation of a Palestinian state. But a true neutral doesn't fund the weapons of terror that Israel rains down on the hapless Gazans and stand aside as Israel keeps gobbling up Palestinian land and resources with new settlements, keeps the 1.8 million Palestinians near starvation from a cruel and debilitating blockade, and keeps the peace process sabotaged so Israel can continue their endless march to the sea. It should be as offensive to us peace lovers to prevent our tax dollars from funding such inhumane conduct as it is to fund America's criminal Middle East wars. Sadly, the US Congress and the presidency are themselves imprisoned by the Likud wing of the Israel Lobby which alternately provides campaign funding for them or their opponents, depending on who will be more loyal to Israel's endless expansion on the backs and well being of their Palestinian hostages. Cutting off aid to Israel till they end the carnage and truly work for peace and a Palestinian state should be simple. Allies don't let allies commit crimes against humanity.
 
 

Monday, July 21, 2014

COD's Breuder, Birt shoot the messengers...figuratively



College of DuPage President Robert Breuder and COD Board Chair Erin Burt fired back at 14 critics at the COD Board meeting July 17 over charges of improper lobbying for a $20 million dollar grant from the state, and general financial mismanagement, including a gourmet public restaurant that lost $546,000 in 2012. Unfortunately, neither Breud...er nor Birt used facts, logic or in Breuder's case, good English, in their puzzling defense. After the 14 critics spoke out against Breuder and the Board, Chairwoman Erin Burt launched an attack on Board member Kathy Hamilton, the sole June 26 vote against the proposed $50 million building, which blamed the entire Grantgate and financial mismanagement matter on Hamilton's publically speaking about it. That's simply stifling a whistleblower who invoked her First Amendment rights to bring these shenanigans to the light of day. Burt, was shocked, shocked that Hamilton voted against the new $50 million classroom building after she agreed to the agenda containing the building request and allegedly didn't voice opposition till the vote. Horrors! Someone should explain to Chair Birt that finalizing approval or disapproval of a project is the purpose of the vote. Otherwise why take one?

But Dr. Breuder topped Birt in the ludicrousness of his defense. He claimed the 14 speakers were a "coordinated and orchestrated" attempt to discredit him but offered no evidence to support that charge. He implied that COD is "the finest community college of its kind in the country" simply because some unnamed folks say it is. The only one I know who says that is Dr. Robert Breuder. Then the corker. Breuder claimed that "It's a tragedy to sit here and be bludgeoned, literally bludgeoned, ... by people to find fault with every dimension of this institution and every dimension of this leadership." Gee, if Dr. Breuder was literally bludgeoned, he'd be walking around in bandages and the 14 speakers would be trying to make bail. 




 Maybe it's time for both Birt and Breuder to walk the plank....figuratively, of course.

Friday, July 18, 2014

College of DuPage Board meeting fireworks better than July 4th's

Just returned from the best show in town: the first COD Board meeting since "Grantgate" (President Breuder's May 9 email detailing his slimy machinations to scarf up $20 million from the state which resulted in the Governor cancelling it and all future
grants pending due diligence). After 45 minutes of the COD administration VP's and President Breuder touting their accomplishments, the public got their chance to speak and they didn't disappoint. One after another after another the "little" people stood up and called for Breuder's resignation or firing; for the Board to investigate "Grantgate"; for the Board to rescind their June 26 vote to build a $50 million classroom not needed as enrollment has dropped from 34,000 to 28,000 the past few years; for the Board to address the monstrous $469,000 compensation package to President Breuder and the $2.5 million pay package for his top 9 Administrators (called 'Millionaires Row'), and on and on for an hour. Everyone who spoke acquitted themselves well especially the student speakers. Again and again the Board was asked, begged, challenged and demanded to address the spiraling financial shenanigans plaguing the College of DuPage, hurting the COD taxpayers, faculty and students. Let's hope the Board gets the message. It's clear that President Breuder never will.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

COD VP doesn't address Board member's building criticism

College of DuPage Executive VP Joseph Collins, in his rebuttal letter, didn't address the substance of COD Board Member Kathy Hamilton's letter explaining her June 26 vote, the only one, opposing the new $50 million classroom building at COD. Three weeks after the vote, Wilson argues the building is necessary because COD enrollment is up. He then goes on to say that "for all intents and purposes" COD is out of space for scheduling classes in the prime morning and evening times. That phase, of course, means nothing. It is a rhetorical trick to justify doing what is not substantiated by a thorough study of all existing classroom space in an already overbuilt campus when many students are switching to online classes from their "home" classroom. The absence of a thorough study, and not the undisputed fact that enrollment is up, was the substance of Hamilton's argument and vote. She argues that the taxpayers and the community are not served when such justification is not provided. President Breuder is proud of stating he runs COD like a business. As one who just retired from 42 years in business, I can assure President Breuder and Vice President Collins that a sound business never spends $50 million on a building that has not been thoroughly researched and vetted.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

A tennis gem in Glen Ellyn

Tucked away in the western edge of Glen Ellyn's scenic Lake Ellyn Park is possibly the oldest recreational facility in all of Glen Ellyn: nearly century old clay tennis courts. Upon entering the gated facility with a membership key, one is transported back to a bygone era when tennis was played on clay or grass instead of the hard surfaces developed in the modern age. The packed green clay forms a subsurface topped with a gritty material which gives the courts their soft, natural feel. The ball bounces higher on the clay slowing down the game and extending rallies well past those possible on hard surfaces. Surrounded by abundant trees and shrubs one forgets about the fast paced modern world lurking just yards from the old time tennis action. The feet and knees take less of a pounding and if you fall you're more likely to wind up with dirt stains rather than cuts and abrasions. No matter how exhausted one is after a couple of hours of competitive tennis, both players must take up the rollers and brush implements to smooth out the now gouged court surface and clean off the white court lines. That is part of the special ambiance experienced with the opportunity to play the game as it was in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Waterleaf or waterfall: COD priorities all wet


The DuPage community is rightly abuzz over the Governor's office cancelling a $20 million grant for a new classroom building at College of DuPage. It resulted from publication of President Robert Breuder's May 9 email to the COD Board detailing his machinations to get the $20 million that would make Machiavelli proud. But this is just the first publi...c airing of a number of issues regarding spending and governance at COD that have been percolating during Breuder's five year tenure. One involves Waterleaf, the professionally run, French cuisine restaurant Breuder installed on campus. What business does a community college have using tax payer and tuition dollars to compete with local eateries? Why should anyone support such an un-educational enterprise that lost $576,000 in 2012. Waterleaf is so desperate it's reduced to advertising in the local church bulletin. Then there is The Waterfall installed by Breuder and the Board to beautify the campus. We're not talking about any waterfall, but a two million dollar extravaganza. Assuming the water is recycled it's not a waste of water, but sure is a waste of money. Meanwhile, last May, COD severed its 27 year association with the Buffalo Theater Ensemble, over its $80,000 annual shortfall in ticket revenue. This long time theatrical gem provided wonderful art for the community and good training for student cast and crew members.

A wise aphorism states that when looking for mis-management, 'just follow the money'. At COD it's 'just follow the water.'

Friday, July 11, 2014

Roskam job growth plan: government help only for the rich


All you need to know about Congressman Peter Roskam's (IL-6) bogus job growth plan is his platform position stated at www.roskam.house.gov:

America should always be a place where hard work, success and achievement are rewarded. But for too long, the economy has been stuck in neutral, causing stifled growth and shrinking opportunity for many individuals. It’s clear that the current playbook isn’t working: an expanding... federal government, with more taxes, more debt and more regulation is not the answer.

That's simply the Republican anti government screed which demonizes any government intervention to rebuild American infrastructure crumbling from decades of neglect. It makes no mention of raising the near poverty level minimum wage to one that provides a decent living in which every additional dollar is immediately returned to an improving economy. It ignores the need extend unemployment benefits to the long term unemployed, a badly needed, humane initiative, which will also return every dollar to a re-stimulated economy. There is no mention that the deficit has dropped from a staggering $1.4 trillion in Bush's last fiscal year to an estimated $649 billion this fiscal year, and down to an estimated $564 billion next year. Roskam ignores the catastrophic harm that an unregulated economy does to our citizenry. In his economic world preventing Deepwater Horizon explosions or the manufacturing millions of cars with faulty ignition systems is not factored into the trashing of all governmental regulation as an economic commandment. If regulations upset the very wealthy, they've got to go. But to create a few hundred or a few thousand jobs, Roskam champions gouging the Heartland with a foul pipeline to placate the fossil fuel industry, as long as it doesn't snake it's way under his house. On taxation, Roskam opposes any and all fairness for the unconscionably greedy rich who use their wealth and their economic clout to pay little or no tax at all while working stiffs get socked. The billionaires have a loyal friend in Illinois' Sixth.

Congressman Roskam knows, like everyone else, that our economic system is rigged: the poor stay poor; the rich get richer. But don't fret. Congressman Roskam is hosting his annual District Jobs Fair at Harper College July 21. Maybe a few district residents will get jobs that someone will get regardless. Every job seeker who attends should inquire of Congressman Roskam when he'll support substantive job bills, raising our pitiful minimum wage, extending benefits to the long term unemployed, sensible legislation to prevent more human and environment harm, and an end to the great tax holiday for the 1%.

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

A COD Board member to be proud of


On June 26, the COD Board approved 6-1, President Robert Breuder's proposed new $50 million dollar classroom building, $20 million of which was to be funded by a state grant. That state grant was just cancelled due to embarrassing revelations of Bueuder's scheming to get the state grant, including thanking the Governor publically for it in front of 3,500 people at commencement even though the grant had not yet been made. This state grant / classroom issue publically reveals that President Breuder's $550 million building and landscaping extravaganza has virtually no oversight by a compliant Board seemingly enthralled by the garish opulence of Breuder's endless expansion. Fortunately, we DuPage residents who truly care about educational excellence, reasonable tuition for our children and wise use of tax dollars have one reasonable voice on the Board. The other six Board members would do well to read Kathy Hamilton's op ed and decide when they will exercise the same common sense, fiscal responsibility and true concern for higher education in DuPage County.
***********************************************************************************
Stop expansion for expansion's sake - DAILY HERALD, JULY 8, 2014

Because of board policy restricting member speech, I must assert my First Amendment right in this letter as a citizen.

We all want to meet the educational needs of our community. I take that goal very seriously as the vice chairman at the College of DuPage. Recently, the COD board voted on a $50 million building for new classrooms. I was the only board member that opposed that investment. I felt the project warranted further analysis and definition of scope in terms of funding.

The $50 million project was to be funded by existing COD cash of $30 million and $20 million from the state. The state funding was uncertain and the appropriateness of linking the $20 million to the building project has recently come into question.

The scope of the funding should not determine the scope of the project. The request for additional classroom space should have included a complete assessment of current and future needs. Investments should be measured against a defined business model and strategic plan and should be an open and transparent starting point for decisions. The impact of any investment on a strategic plan should be clear or made clear. This was not done.

It is your money: your state income taxes, your property taxes and your student tuition. It is in the best interest of the community, the college and its students that board decisions as well as the circumstances under which they are made see the light of day. We need to stop expansion for expansion sake. Our community deserves better.

Kathy Hamilton
Vice Chair
COD Board

Monday, July 07, 2014

COD students go on line; President Breuder builds to the sky

Talk about two groups going in opposite directions, consider the COD student body and the COD Board, led by irrepressible building builder Robert Breuder. While many COD students, following a nationwide trend, have gravitated to online classes, COD President Robert Breuder touts his five year, half billion dollar building empire that has turned the COD campus into a veritable city within a city. While most of the dough has gon...e for brick and mortar as students go for pixels in the comfort of their homes, a near fortune has gone for landscaping that would make Harvard or the University of Chicago proud. In his now infamous May 9 email to the Board agonizing over the need to hastily approve a new classroom building to justify getting a $20 million grant from Governor Quinn, Breuder told the Board they should trust him because, "in the last five years, I have led a $550 million transformation of our physical plant. By now I hope all Board members have confidence in my judgment. But, then again, this may be about something else." You bet this is about something else. It's about constructing a Xanadu of a campus on the backs of taxpayers and students with ever increasing tax levies and tuition, while COD has squired away $72 million in the bank for a 'rainy day.' Breuder told the Chicago Tribune, which editorialized against his machinations to acquire the $20 million grant without a firm construction project in place, 'he was doing what ever college president does: chasing funds.' His last comment tells all we need to know: 'he runs the college like a business.'

The Board and the community need to remind Breuder that COD is not a business, it is and educational institution. And when students are forced out because their tuition is constantly raised to build a permanent legacy for their president, that represents a business that is failing

Sanguinetti not ready...for Prime Time

Novice candidate for high office, Evelyn Sanguinetti, Republican Bruce Rauner's running mate for Lt. Governor, has a lot to learn about politics. In an interview for Hola America TV, Sanguinetti said she'd be Rauner's partner "and whenever he's not, I will be able to make decisions in his stead." The only problem with that statement is the Lt. Governor has n...o gubernatorial decision making powers. Then, Sanguinetti's Facebook profile page suddenly disappeared. One reason may be that Sanguinetti "liked" the movie '2016: Obama's America," a scorched earth irrational attack on President Obama. She also "liked" the page 'I will NOT vote for Obama in 2012' containing childish, gratuitously insulting posts about the president. Sanguinetti may already have worn out her welcome with the Rauner campaign which likely encouraged her to get off Facebook and gave her a crash course on the duties of the Lt. Governor. No such controversy surrounds Paul Vallas, Governor Quinn's running mate who has a long, distinguished and scandal free record of public service. We know Paul Vallas, and it's apparent that Evelyn Sanguinetti is no Paul Vallas.

Sunday, July 06, 2014

COD Prez weaves a tangled web

College of DuPage President Robert Breuder is in well deserved hot water for his May 9 email to the Board of Trustees strategizing how to wrangle $20 million in state funding for the college. His opening line is a classic: "I'm in a bit of a quandary." Then he laments how he's been working with the Governor's Office "seemingly forever" to get "our" $20 million. The quandary Breuder quickly identifies is that the two projects originally floated, building a Homeland Security building and demolishing unneeded buildings, have already been funded. What to do? Breuder suggests slam-dunking a new classroom building, and, in the interests of urgency, wants the Board to rubberstamp his suggestion so he can gobble up the $20 mill before someone else gets it. To cement this maneuver Breuder plans to thank Governor Quinn publically for the loot in front of 3,500 people when he addresses commencement before the money is committed. Breuder implies that with 3,500 votes on the line, Quinn won't dare renege giving COD the money. If that is not bad enough, Breuder surmises that in the event the new classroom building is not approved, "there is always the option of telling the Governor we want the money, will bank it until we figure out how to use it, and then build something." That translates roughly to "Governor Quinn, show COD the money and we promise to build something really, really good."

This email sat dormant for seven weeks till public watchdog group For The Good of Illinois acquired a copy of it under the Freedom of Information Act. The resulting publicity of Breuder's duplicity caused Governor Quinn, in a stinging rebuke to Breuder, to withdraw the $20 million grant. Additionally, COD Board Vice Chair Kathy Hamilton stated the Board has a responsibility to investigate possible wrongdoing by Breuder. He closed his email with this prophetic comment: "Bottom line: I need some room to breathe on this matter so I can enhance the likelihood we get the $20 million, soon." Alas, the oxygen has just been snuffed out in Breuder's obsession to secure $20 million using extremely dubious machinations. His conduct reminds me of the wise aphorism:
                 "Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive"

Saturday, July 05, 2014

Back to Iraq, Congressman Roskam?


At his 2006 debate with challenger Tammy Duckworth, Illinois Sixth District congressional candidate Peter Roskam had this to say when asked what his strategy was to win the Iraq war? "I don't have a strategy to win in Iraq; I have a goal, that it end well, so we don't have to go back." That response was politically brilliant. Roskam, like anyone remotely informed about that failed, criminal war, knew it was unwinnable. But he also knew that as long as we stayed there we could never be pushed out in defeat. So instead of answering the unanswerable, he offered a bromide sure to soothe his conservative base who tend to mindlessly support senseless American military interventions. It was also a nod to the war party that Roskam wouldn't be a pesky war critic like Republican congressmen Ron Paul (TX) and Walter Jones (NC). Those truth tellers become quickly marginalized by the war party.

In the following seven and a half years, Roskam parlayed that war party support to become House GOP Chief Deputy Whip, the No. 4 House GOP leader. And while the Iraq war gobbled up trillions of dollars, killed 4,489 GI's, physically injured or or mentally damaged hundreds of thousands more, and devastating Iraq, Roskam offered not a peep of criticism. When he did speak up it was to cement his allegiance to the war party with statements like, "The Sixth District is not a 'cut and run' district," or "We didn't go into Iraq with full force." Roskam made those egregious statements early on and has since been quiet as church mouse. Visit his website www.roskam.house.gov, search Iraq war and see what pops up:


•65 YEARS OF (ISRAELI) INDEPENDENCE (4-15-2013)

•IRON DOME A GAMECHANGER, BUT WE MUST DO MORE (10-24-2013)

•WASHINGTON EXAMINER EDITORIAL: WHY DOES NANCY PELOSI FEAR AN OBAMACARE INSPECTOR GENERAL? (3-10-2014)

In all three old citations Iraq is only mentioned tangentially. These links deal with Roskam's real interests of supporting Israel's foreign policy over those of the United States, and his relentless opposition to providing decent health insurance for the 40 millions uninsured. Roskam's avoidance of dealing with the Iraq catastrophe is back on the front burner now that Iraq is in collapse from the war his slavishly supported. But don't expect Roskam to champion our return to Iraq anytime soon. Unlike unrepentant war criminal Dick Cheney and warmongering senators John McCain and Lindsay Graham, ginning up a return to Iraq on every news show, Roskam has learned his war party lessons well: vote the war party line but pretend these failed military incursions don't exist.

That is my congressman Peter Roskam: paid to represent the Sixth District; functioning as a lobbyist for the war party.

Friday, July 04, 2014

238 YEAR OLD EXPIRES...LOOKS LIKE WE DID IT


The body of a 238 year old, affectionately known as Uncle Sam, was found on Capitol Hill in Washington DC today. Crime Scene Investigators placed police tape around the body believing foul play was involved.

Given his age, Uncle Sam showed signs of extreme elder abuse. Most of his assets had been siphoned off to engorge the money belts of the very rich, and fund criminal wars that have killed hundreds of thousands. His eyes had been taped shut to prevent him from seeing the damage being done and his ears were plugged to ward off cries of the unemployed and the untreated sick and the poor. His jaw was wired shut to prevent his screams for help. His arteries - the highways and bridges that carried the commerce so vital to his economic well being - were clogged and crumbling, not from old age but from senseless neglect. His cholesterol level had topped 14 trillion. The paid public servants responsible for his well being were seen imbibing a strange brew of tea and sophistry that drove them into a frenzy of unprecedented meanness towards their benevolent Uncle. As they danced around the corpse they were heard chanting: "Government is not the solution: government is the problem".

Police broke up the mob but made no arrests.

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Don't fret ladies; Barack's got your back

It only took a week but the Supreme Court crafted a decision even more dreadful than McCullen v. Coakley, which allowed fanatical abortion protesters to exercise their fiery free speech by piercing the 35 foot buffer zone Massachusetts wisely enveloped around harangued women entering abortion clinics. Yesterday's dual judicial abortion in Burwell v Hobby Lobby, and Conestoga Wood Specialties v. Burwell consigned nearly a third of working women to the potential for having a boss, claiming to be a Christian, dictate they can't get the proper reproductive health care mandated by government health care reform, simply because it offends the boss's so called religious beliefs. The ruling leaves those tens of millions with a Hobson's Choice: forget about getting urgently needed relief from reproductive slavery or go deep in debt to pay for it. A popular IUD can cost up to a month's pay for a minimum wage gal.

But the same guy who fought for and willed into law that 21st century health care law lifting American's less fortunate out of the health care basement, will likely display more Christianity toward those now endangered women than the folks at Hobby Lobby or Conestoga Specialty Cabinets could only dream about. The president will surely counter this heartless move by the companies and the Court by extending the provision already in place exempting religious organizations, by requiring contraceptive services to be paid for by the insurance provider, or partially by the government itself through tax credits.    

An army of outraged ladies and their male supporters, including this one, are surely checking the veto box when considering any 'chatch' from Hobby Lobby or a Conestoga cabinet. And if Jesus would descend to the Heartland, he'd probably pick up a picket sign and stand outside a Hobby Lobby joint till arrested for looking like a crazed hippie.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Attacking Iraq; leaving Iraq - a false equivalency

Bob Schieffer, on Sunday's Face The Nation, parroted the war party's disgusting false equivalency that our December 31, 2011, withdrawal from Iraq may have been just as bad as the original March 19, 2003, Shock & Awe attack. That is the new narrative the Bush war criminals and their fellow war mongers in Congress and the media have teamed up on to salvage their reputations over their heinous promotion of criminal war. Schieffer interviewed several hard line conservatives all moaning about the breakup of Iraq into Kurdish, Sunni and Shi'ite sections, which they claim, with no substantiation whatsoever, presents an direct threat to the Homeland. They all blamed the president's ending of the war as a mistake which brought us to the current crisis. One guest even demanded we postpone our December 31, 2014, pullout from Afghanistan. Schieffer, in his closing comment, said the war was wrong but the pullout was wrong. Without of word of criticism of the war starters, he wondered if Obama didn't try hard enough to ink a deal with Iraq to keep a residual force under US control, something Iraq wouldn't allow. He conveniently ignored the fact that Bush's criminal war splattered Iraq like Humpty Dumpty, never to be put back together again. What Schieffer and his neocon guests don't understand is that folks who start a criminal war deserve to be condemned and jailed. Folks who end a criminal war should be applauded and revered. Face The Nation certainly didn't face up to the neocons' false equivalency.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

The Supremes featured on Seinfeld episode

Perusing Thursday's Supreme Court decision striking down Massachusetts' 35 foot barrier to protect women entering abortion clinics from 'in your face' harassment, I had a sense of Deja Vu. Sure enough the Supremes' insensitivity to the plight of persons they cannot empathize with was foreshadowed by "The Stall", a Seinfeld episode from 20 years ago. In it, the Supremes were represented by Jane, Jerry's new girlfriend, who refused to aid Elaine, sitting in for our now unprotected abortion seekers, in the next washroom stall, who found herself without toilet paper. "Sorry, I just don't have a square to spare" was Jane's heartless response to Elaine's plight that every normal person comprehends. While not in the written decision, one can visualize Chief Justice Robert's, sitting on his 'throne' writing, "Sorry, ladies, we Supremes, who have a 250 foot buffer to protect us, simply don't have a square foot of buffer to spare." In Seinfeld's world all is righted as Jane is unmasked, allowing Elaine to rush ahead of her on a trip to the ladies room so she could purloin the precious paper and calmly offer "I don't have a square to spare" to her tormentor turned tormented. Alas, life doesn't fully imitate art. The gauntlet for these unfortunate ladies seeking reproductive freedom just got longer and scarier with no relief in sight.

The decision in McCullen v. Coakley may not rise to the earthshaking consequences of the Dred Scott decision, but it sure is dreadful.

The dubious case for dictating Iraq's furure

The Trib's June 28 editorial "The dubious case of splitting Iraq into 3 states" displays the colonialist and paternalistic attitude of the war party's media wing that got us into this mess in the first place. Iraq was a stable buffer against extremism back in 2003 before the Trib and its media shills helped sell our criminal war against Iraq which blasted it into three parts. The Bush war cabinet waged the war as Part II of their reprehensible Middle East Makeover at the point of a smart bomb. Iraq, like Afghanistan, was a prize to conquer, then exploit. Unfortunately for the Bush thugs, the people in Iraq, surveying the murder and mayhem, pushed back. The Kurds grabbed their neighborhood as a new quasi nation, which now includes Kirkuk. The Shi'ites ethnically cleansed the Sunni tormenters from every vestige of power, governmental services and oil wealth as payback for decades of the same. The Sunni's, a majority in a large middle section of Iraq, did what any besieged folks do: they fought back. That is the human way nation states, including the US, have been formed throughout history. But the Trib Editorial Board, looking down from their lofty Tribune Tower, pontificates that such a division is not good for the US. They then demand the following: "This much is clear: al-Maliki must go." That mantra of dictating who can govern a foreign land is something the Trib repeats over and over and over: Hussein must go. Ahmadinejad must go. Assad must go. Mubarak must go. Gadhafi must go. Now it Nouri al-Maliki's turn to walk the war party's plank.

Face it folks. The Kurds and the Sunnis and the Shi'ites in the artificial nation the Brits created in their colonial arrogance of 1920, will decide the future of that pitiful land we have devastated beyond imagination.  

Friday, June 27, 2014

Liz Cheney advocates mass murder on Fox News

Flipping channels I stumbled upon a familiar face, Liz Cheney, daughter of Iraq war architect Dick Cheney, given free reign on Fox News to advocate massive bombing in Iraq and Syria. The irony was lost on Ms. Cheney, and her uncritical questioner, that Cheney proposes killing many Sunnis in Iraq, to prevent those insurgents from regaining power from their Shi'ite oppressors in Baghdad, while proposing killing many Shi'ites in Syria to allow Sunni insurgents to overthrow the Shi'ite government. I'm not sure what is more disturbing: Liz Cheney advocating mass murder to salvage an unattainable victory for her father's murderous and criminal Iraq war, or a major news organization allowing her to appear before millions advocating such sociopathy and validating her madness with the incessant nodding of a bobble head interviewer.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

US should acknowledge criminality of Iraq war

Eleven years and three months since we illegally and immorally invaded Iraq, it's time the US confessed the criminality of this atrocity which has created endless death and destruction to that pitiful land. Such action would spur a number of benefits. It would begin to restore America's moral compass fractured when our response to terrorist attacks was launching our own terrorist attacks against a hated, but non-belligerent state. It would begin the process of holding those responsible for our war crimes accountable in court, that of public opinion if not the court of international law. It would bring a measure of justice to the millions killed, injured or displaced by our criminal war, which continues the destruction of Iraq today and into the endless future two and a half years after we officially ended it. 
But the most important reason for admitting our criminality is that it will prevent the US from going back into Iraq militarily to prevent it's partitioning into a Kurdish, Sunni and Shi'ite sector. That is occurring right before our eyes as the Shi'ite puppet Maliki we installed in 2006, never planned to share his new found power and oil wealth with either the Kurds or the Sunnis. His totalitarian tilt is what gives the Sunni rebels legitimacy in the Sunni areas they are gobbling up. The sending of 275 GI's sent to protect our Xanadu of an embassy, the 300 military 'advisors' to coach an uncoachable Iraqi army, and the president's pronouncements we may start bombing again do not bode well for America staying out of the fight. That would be a colossal mistake. Admit our culpability for the unfolding bloody partitioning of Iraq and we can devote our energies to diplomacy with Iraq's neighbors, including Iran. Admit our culpability and the only political leaders and analysts allowed to weigh in on the solution would be those untainted by their lust for criminal war back in 2003. Instead, war criminals like Dick Cheney and war mongers like Senators John McCain and Lindsay Graham, get the most airtime to browbeat and goad the president into blasting thousands more to smithereens. That is reprehensible and amounts to their being encouraged to foment more criminal war.  
 
After WWII the war criminals in Japan and Germany were either executed or imprisoned. The unindicted war mongers were told to shut up. We didn't hear folks in either country bragging about their war crimes like their US counterparts do and incredibly, demanding more of the same. Why can't the US follow their example?    

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Two Mississippi ironies

Yesterday I watched the wonderful Public Television special 'Freedom Summer' about the 700 mostly white students who went to Mississippi 50 years ago to engage Mississippi's disenfranchised blacks to begin the dangerous process of registering to vote. How dangerous? Yesterday was three days past a half century since the June 21, 1964, murders of two of them, along with local black James Cheney, horrified the nation and reinvigorated the volunteers and Mississippi blacks to proceed with their electoral entitlement quest. While marginally involved in the civil rights movement my freshman year at University of Chicago preceding Freedom Summer, I had no stomach to test fate in that barbaric relic of the post Reconstruction South. I greatly admired one of my classmates who did. 

A postscript to the special mentioned that Mississippi now has the most elected black officeholders in the country. And it was a fitting irony that as I watched that astonishing summer play out, enough Mississippi blacks, virtually all Democrats since most white racists switched to the Republican Party, crossed over to vote in the GOP runoff election for Senator to deny a likely victory to a Tea Partier promising to be even more regressive than the three term incumbent. A bitter irony is that as we celebrate what transpired 50 years ago, the very right to vote by minorities and the marginalized is being threatened anew, not by poll taxes and violence, but by Tea Party sponsored Voter ID laws whose sole purpose is to suppress the black and brown vote. Alas, working to improve the human condition is one venture in which retirement is not an option

Monday, June 23, 2014

Cheney neocons terrified by war truth teller Paul

The American neocons lead by from former Vice President Dick Cheney are flummoxed and furious that the leading GOP presidential contender Rand Paul has put the blame for the civil war in Iraq in the very neocons Cheney still champions. Paul has come out swinging against the Cheney neocons saying the current partitioning in Iraq by the Sunni ...insurgent group ISIS resulted from their catastrophic war of choice in Iraq, not Obama's 2011 withdrawal from that pitiful country. Cheney, whose new heart has given him life but not a conscience or a soul, can only sputter that Rand is an isolationist. Nothing can be further from reality. Paul is simply a truth teller when he says he couldn't send his son to help Iraq retake Mosul when our fabulously funded and trained Iraqi army stripped off their American bought uniforms and fled to Baghdad. Cheney, who used five deferments to avoid the Vietnam War, would willingly add to the 4,489 GI's killed in his made up, criminal war of 2003, to salvage a shred of his bloodstained legacy.

George W. Bush may have been the puppet who announced the war as President in name, but it was Cheney, as the Bush puppet master, and his neocon conspirators, who sent hundreds of thousands to an early death. Bush, to his credit, is out of politics and warmongering. He appears to have realized his mistake and figures he killed enough. Cheney still hasn't come to terms with either.
The American neocons lead by from former Vice President Dick Cheney are flummoxed and furious that the leading GOP presidential contender Rand Paul has put the blame for the civil war in Iraq on the very neocons Cheney still champions. Paul has come out swinging against the Cheney neocons saying the current partitioning in Iraq by the Sunni insurgent group ISIS resulted from their catastrophic war of choice in Iraq, not Obama's 2011 withdrawal from that pitiful country. Cheney, whose new heart has given him life but not a conscience or a soul, can only sputter that Rand is an isolationist. Nothing can be further from reality. Paul is simply a truth teller when he says he couldn't send his son to help Iraq retake Mosul when our fabulously funded and trained Iraqi army stripped off their American bought uniforms and fled to Baghdad. Cheney, who used five deferments to avoid the Vietnam War, would willingly add to the 4,489 GI's killed in his made up, criminal war of 2003, to salvage a shred of his bloodstained legacy.

George W. Bush may have been the puppet who announced the war as President in name, but it was Cheney, as the Bush puppet master, and his neocon conspirators, who sent hundreds of thousands to an early death. Bush, to his credit, is out of politics and warmongering. He appears to have  realized his mistake and figures he killed enough. Cheney still hasn't come to terms with either.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Loss Roskam's opportunity to serve district


Though visibly disappointed, my congressman Peter Roskam (IL-6) should view his loss to Steve Scalise (LA-1) to be House GOP Whip as a wonderful opportunity to finally serve his district and the national public interest. Losing to Scalise, a rightward tilt (if that's possible) to placate the most virulent Red State conservatives, means Roskam will likel...y be bounced from his Chief Deputy Whip job to allow Scalise to pick a political supporter for this key No. 4 House GOP leadership position. The opportunity, if Roskam can have an epiphany and seize it, exists because he will no longer be charged to robotically count votes to pass the obstructionist Tea Party legislation designed to demean, destroy and prevent any sensible polities to create jobs, prevent raising the minimum wage, extend unemployment insurance to the chronically unemployed, fix our broken immigration system, deny women full reproductive freedom, extend full civil rights to the LGBT community, and halt the destruction of Mother Earth with 'Drill, Baby, Drill.' He will no longer be locked into the heartless leadership responsibility to overturn, defund and delegitimize the Affordable Care Act which is keeping tens of millions from financial ruin, diminished health and even death from the worst health care delivery system in the industrialized world. Out of House GOP leadership, Roskam can actually break with the largely GOP war party which demonizes President Obama over his efforts to resist mindless calls for more senseless military adventurism, the one aspect of government the Tea Party controlling the House GOP leadership supports. Peter Roskam has spent the last three and a half years supporting all those despicable policies as Chief Deputy Whip...to the Sixth District's sorrow. In his letter to House GOP colleagues promoting his conservative bonafides, Roskam touted his obstructionism like a badge of honor when it simply was a lesson in insatiable ambition at the expense of the public interest. With a half year to go in his fourth term, Roskam still has time to make up for his stint as Chief Deputy Obstructionist by finally opening his heart and soul to the devastating carnage wrought to the body politic by the Tea Party fanatics.
 
Roskam getting dumped by the Tea Party is small potatoes. Roskam dumping the Tea Party would be huge. Ponder that, Congressman.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Iraq war was lost; stay out in peace

 

It is reprehensible that some of the same mendacious neocons that lied and fear-mongered America into a criminal war against Iraq 11 years ago are once again polluting the airwaves with calls for more military intervention there now that the Sunni-Shi'ite sectarian conflict we ignited is tearing Iraq apart. Senators John McCain and Lindsay Graham popped up with their lies about how we won the war till Obama pulled out in 2011. They both conveniently omit that former president George W. Bush signed the exit order before Obama took office and Obama couldn't forge an extension because the Iraqi government wisely demanded Iraqi justice for American soldiers who commit crimes there as part of the extension. We never won a thing in Iraq and we were unceremoniously kicked out. We've also been forced to endure equally nefarious members of the Bush war cabinet Paul Bremer and Paul Wolfowitz. Bremer was the guy who dismissed the Iraqi army sending hundreds of thousands into the street without jobs but with weapons. Wolfowitz ludicrously bragged how the Iraq war could be prosecuted on the cheap, costing no more than a mere 30 billion. Several trillion later he's still deemed worthy enough to pontificate about how we must jump back in. Nearly every day we're subjected to chief media neocon Bill Kristol once again call for more warfare when he never made a sensible and valid assessment of the Iraq war he's championed for 11 years now. Before long we may see the likes of Bush war criminals Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and Condoleezza Rice weighing in a feeble attempt salvage their reputations irrevocably scarred by war crimes.

But most shame must be reserved to the mainstream media who give these warmongers a forum to spew their endless calls for more war to justify their decade long litany of murderous malfeasance. We can only prevent getting involved in more senseless, unwinnable warfare if we push back by the tens of millions. This is not and never should be a spectator sport for Joe Sixpack. He must understand that if his eyes glaze over and he turns away from the impending Iraq Disaster Redux, he will be enabling the same dark forces who unleashed this catastrophe 11 years ago. The war was lost. Go in peace.

It's Graham, not Maliki, that should go



Premier American warmonger Sen. Lindsay Graham appeared on Face The Nation Sunday to promote renewed military intervention in Iraq. Graham was "heartbroken" that the Sunnis were gobbling up large areas of Iraq from the Shi'ite dominated government of President Nouri al-Maliki. He neglected to mention that his undying support for President Bush's criminal w...ar is what created the sectarian violence between Sunnis, Shi'ites and Kurds that has essentially splintered Iraq into thirds. Trillions of treasure squandered, hundreds of thousands dead, including 4,489 GI's is not enough for Sen. Graham who wants US air power to kill more, more, more.

While Graham's warmongering was expected, it's his comment about the Iraqi government that was truly offensive. "Maliki is a flawed leader. He has to go...absolutely." That precisely reflects the colonial approach to weak powers America wants to conquer and exploit that gets all those innocents killed and makes America reviled around the world. Graham appeared oblivious his statement about dumping a duly elected foreign leader simply because he doesn't suit Graham's obsession with global dominance, is contrary to America's founding and international law. Alas, that has been America's penchant ever since it jumped into the colonialism game back in 1898 with our trumped up war of conquest against Spain over Cuba. In smashing pitifully weak Spain, we acquired Cuba and the Philippines. While we quickly freed Cuba, we've spent the last 55 years either trying to overthrow or weaken its government because we don't like it. The Philippines had to wait 48 years for their freedom and incurred hundreds of thousands dead when they revolted against our takeover in 1898. And here we are in 2014 with Sen. Lindsay Graham demanding that the Iraqi president has to go because Graham doesn't like him.

Sen. Graham may have won his Primary and will be easily re-elected in November, but if he has an once of integrity, patriotism and decency, he will resign today. In his own words he "is a flawed leader. He has to go...absolutely."
 

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Deconstructing Roskam's plea to be number three

In a previous post I pointed out how Tea Partier David Brat's stunning defeat of House GOP Majority Leader Eric Cantor may pull my congressman Peter Roskam (IL-6) further to the right "if that's possible." This post will translate for us ordinary citizens, Roskam's letter to House Republicans seeking support to elevate him from No. 4 House GOP leader, Chief Deputy Whip, to No. 3 leader, Majority Whip. Quoting Founding Father Thomas Jefferson, no less, who said "The ground of liberty is to be gained by inches," Roskam couched his bid to move up to the American Revolution. In other words, if you liked the American Revolution, you'll love Roskam as House GOP Majority Whip.

Then he touted his past three years as Chief Deputy Whip saying he lead on "the difficult skirmishes on spending, on healthcare, on taxes, and above all on government intrusion and heavy handedness in a dizzying number of areas of our public and private lives." 
Translation: "I shut down the government for you guys to prevent 40 million Americans from getting health insurance and maybe not go bankrupt, incur ill health or possibly die. Doesn't that prove my Tea Party bonifides?"

Not to completely ignore GOP incompetence, Roskam offers this: "We haven't always played smart. We haven't always worked as a team. In some situations, we haven't scored any points, or won the match." 
Translation: "We opposed everything most Americans want and need and made utter fools or ourselves in the process."

Roskam then lamented how frustrating it was: "to watch our economy and our core values backslide under the onslaught of President Obama and Harry Reid's class warfare and welfare state agenda, we don't have to live this way."
Translation: "Unemployment is down; GDP is up; deficit is down; consumer confidence is up. Of course I'm going to fib about how wonderfully America has improved under President Obama."

Not content to cite just Thomas Jefferson to boost his House Whip bid, Roskam invoked his patron saint and predecessor Henry Hyde declaring: "Henry redefined for generations what it means to be a principled conservative, scoring unparalleled victories on the most sacred of all issues we touch in our work here, the sanctity of human life. He did it by being passionate, by being outspoken, by being unyielding in his faith and conviction, and by fighting inch by inch on the field of battle to achieve a more perfect union."
Translation: "OK, all he did was work mightily to deny reproductive health to women while supporting President Bush's criminal war in Iraq that killed hundreds of thousands. But then, I did too".

The vote comes this Thursday. David Brat won't be voting since he still must win the November election to become a House Republican. But his shadow will loom large over the House GOP leadership vote as Republicans scramble to determine how far right they must tilt to placate the Tea Party. As for Congressman Roskam? He's so right he's wrong.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Bush chickens roost over shattered Iraq

We anti war critics have been predicting the collapse of Iraq for a decade now. As the 'Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant' (ISIS) marches across Iraq, gobbling up the second largest city Mosul, and controlling the western third of the country, the US trained Iraq soldiers are shedding their uniforms faster than you can say "shock and awe." The war party, headed up by Senators John McCain and Lindsay Graham are demanding renewed military intervention by the president and blaming the entire Iraqi collapse on his pull out of Iraq in 2011.

Bunk.

The American public was sick of a decade of senseless, criminal war President George W. Bush launched against Iraq in 2003, would have preferred it never been fought, and lamented Obama's excruciatingly slow three year pull out. Several trillion dollars squandered, hundreds of thousands dead including 4,489 GI's and millions injured or displaced is not enough for the virulent warmongers McCain and Graham. McCain in particular sounds delusional or mentally challenged when he says we won in Iraq until Obama pulled out. What he conveniently or possibly medically forgets is that the Iraqis kicked us out because we wouldn't accept their demand to hold US soldiers accountable for atrocities they have a tendency to commit when defiling Iraqi territory. Both McCain and Graham, rabid proponents of Bush's criminal war, are working hard to erase their responsibility for the senseless bloodletting by calling it a just cause and noble victory being lost by a president who simply doesn't share their lust for war, war and more war. The only force that can keep Obama from giving into their crazed demands is the American People, who rose up and prevented, through public opinion, the senseless bombing of Syrian forces that would have killed hundreds, if not thousands of innocents, and achieved nothing. We should let Iraq's best new buddy Iran, who we gifted Iraq with by toppling Saddam Hussein, pull their Shi'ite chestnuts out of the fire being torched by the Sunni militants. Iran's elite Qud force is already being deployed in Tikrit, Karbala and Najaf. Since the war party still lusts for war with Iran, allowing Tehran to save Iraq in not an option. The congressional war lovers, abetted by their fellow sociopaths and war profiteers in the media, the military and the munitions makers will get their way unless WE push back. Our message is simple: We've killed enough.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Brat victory sure to pull Roskam further right

 

There was good news and bad for career right wing politician Peter Roskam in Dave Brat's stunning Tea Party victory over House GOP Majority Leader Eric Cantor (VA-7) yesterday. As House GOP Chief Deputy Whip, Roskam is likely to move up at least one position from his current No.4 spot. That's the good news.

The bad news is that Roskam, as well as every GOP leader, must pause to see the danger in Tea Party extremist Brat knocking off a fellow GOP powerhouse like Cantor. Brat's extremism in reflected in his single issue fanaticism demonizing the undocumented, and by extension all Latinos, in hammering away at Cantor's efforts to bring the GOP into the mainstream on immigration reform. Like crazed ideological Communists, there is no compromise, no moderation and no statesmanship in Brat's twisted nation view. Brat, a Virginia economics professor, disgraced his profession by opposing extending the debt ceiling and re-opening the government shut down last year with Roskam's help. Folks like Cantor and Roskam support Tea Party policies but are reserved in their public comments to mask their extremism. Roskam votes against every sensible job creation measure, opposes women's reproductive freedom, ignores LGBT issues like the plague they are to the right, opposes unemployment insurance benefits for the long term unemployed and loves the current poverty level minimum wage which keeps wealth rolling into his wealthy base. Roskam on climate change? It's the XL Pipeline and 'Drlll, Baby, Drill'. Roskam feigns moderation on immigration reform, claiming the issue is too big to legislate in one oversized chunk. His solution? Take a baby chunk by constructing a gigantic fence across our southern border. Brat loves that stuff but is too craven and vocal in his extremism for the likes of Roskam, Boehner and McCarthy, the three GOP House leaders still standing. And Roskam is no fool when it comes to pandering to the Tea Party fanatics. He saw what happened to Sandy Pihos, the relatively moderate six term Illinois legislator in Roskam's Sixth, smacked out of office in the March Primary by Tea Party Patriot and anti government champion Peter Breen. As Roskam moves up in the House GOP leadership he's sure to tilt further rightward, if that's possible, to fend off a Dave Brat clone emerging in the Illinois Sixth to paint Roskam as a traitorous moderate.

Get your popcorn and soda pop, pull up a chair, and enjoy the emerging civil war in the House GOP, initiated by Dave Brat's Fort Sumter. Just don't expect to see any critical problem solving in the 114th House sessions. That is something for statesmen, a concept that has been banned from the Tea Party Manifesto.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Concealed weapon leads to senseless death

Joseph Wilcox, 31, didn't need to die in the horrific anti government terrorist incident in Las Vegas Sunday. The two Las Vegas cops had no such option as they were gunned down simply because they were the first convenient target for the murderous duo who later killed themselves after their short, bloody 'revolution' against authority ended. But civilian Wilcox, carrying a legal concealed weapon, felt brave enough to play cop and confronted guntoter Jared Miller in the Walmart across the street from the cop killer scene. Not a trained cop, Wilcox rushed past Jared's wife and crime partner Amanda, who shot him to death as he confronted Jared.  That dramatically illustrates the danger of conceal carry. Wilcox died but the bloodbath could have been worse if he opened fire on Miller and shot some truly innocent bystanders instead. Carrying a concealed weapon may make one feel safer, but the odds are it will more likely be used to one's detriment rather than one's benefit, and the detriment of the public as well.