Friday, September 28, 2007


As the private military organization known as Blackwater becomes an ever- growing and ever-present force in America's military juggernaut, it would be appropriate to give them a motto, like the other services.

How about, "The overpaid, the unaccountable, the trigger-happy."

Origianlly published in Daily Herald, September 25, 2007

Monday, September 24, 2007


These are tough times for social conservatives and evangelicals.

The GOP presidential frontrunner, Rudy Giuliani, is a social liberal who favors abortion, practices serial monogamy (picking out the next partner before jettasing his current mate), rooms with a gay couple during a messy divorce and is somewhat estranged from his son and daughter.

This is not exactly what the Focus on the Family crowd looks for in a president.

The only other prominent contenders, Mitt Romney and John McCain, don’t quite fit the bill. Romney led the evil liberal state of Massachusetts, looking and sounding a lot like one of the dreaded Kennedy clan. McCain is still not forgiven for his trashing of the Christian Right in 2000, before he got religion on the subject of religion and made nice with them.

From stage right enter Fred Thompson, former senator, multimillionaire, lobbyist and, most famously, New York City District Attorney Arthur Branch on “Law and Order.” He appears to have the look, demeanor and political philosophy that social conservatives and evangelicals can rally around. He comes from the right part of the country, spouts socially conservative talking points and doesn’t have the baggage that all the other GOP frontrunners do.

Trouble is Thompson has no accomplishments or vision to offer in all his many years in public service. He’s viewed as lazy by his former colleagues, appears befuddled in public appearances so far and at 65 is woefully out of place in the current cauldron of critical issues facing our nation.

The GOP is fond of bashing Hollywood types when they are of the Sean Penn or Tim Robbins liberal bent. They love Thompson because as New York District Attorney Branch he personifies the heroic conservative mold that propelled Ronald Reagan from B actor to the presidency.

They have misjudged Thompson, however. In real life he is more like the Peter Sellers character Chance the gardener in the 1979 movie “Being There,” whose simple-minded, TV-inspired statements were considered profound.

In 2008, America needs a suit, or a dress, with substance.

Originally published in Wheaton News Leader and Lombard Press Spectator,
September 24, 2007