Monday, July 25, 2016

Your Nation Needs You: Now Is the Hour--Register to Vote if You Don't Own a Current Voter's Card

After the Antics in Clevland:  Since we heard Donald Trump make
promises he cannot legally or logistically keep, it is more urgent
than ever to have all adult citizens of this fractured land registered
to vote. The polls (some of which, like Quinnipiac, are not accurate
due to missing the young with cell service only) show Trump and
Clinton in a dead heat; some days, one is a bit ahead of the other.

It is a disgusting disgrace and an embarrassment that we are
offered these two as our most successful candidates to lead this
large country; other, less flawed contenders were shouted down
or dismissed. This is a dangerous, chaotic era we find ourselves
in, requiring a truly talented, moral, experienced leader  who is
comfortable and conversant with the levers of power and
process. Mrs. Clinton does have ample requisite experience,
but plainly proves she is deficient in ethics/morality, with her
private server in her home conducting the U.S. State Department's
business, subsequently deleting thousands of her emails--but not
before some of them (well over 100) were released, showing
her disregard for legal process and security. As an attorney she
should clearly know and do better.

Right now there should be serious voter registration drives
all across America, as close to 100% of all eligible to vote
registered before November. Let's be adult about it:

Your nation needs you now, this is the hour--
Register to vote!

Monday, July 18, 2016

November 2016: Will We Get There With Some Semblance of Order?

Judging by the past few months, with mind-numbing acts
of folly, violent vendettas, and race-motivated murders, we
won't/don't/can't possess the required gravitas, intelligence and
knowledge to gracefully, morally and legally segue into a
civilized country, one with differences which can be discussed
rationally rather than with insults, threats, shouts and physical
attacks at times leading to deaths.

Again, for the hundredth time: I am ashamed to be a human
being in this era. The lawlessness, meanness, ignorance,
arrogance, lying and denying are destroying lives here at home
and around the globe. Today's opening salvo at the 2016
Republican Convention in Cleveland had the anti-Trump
forces defeated by a Southerner presiding over floor votes
to authorize a roll call, totals for and against toted up
casually, probably not accurately; many delegates walked out.

Oh, Newt Gingrich will stay the course, his hunger for
lasting fame and his ambitions never die, others of his
stripe too. I wish Gov. Kasich had attended, but he
served 18 years in the U.S. Congress, so he must have
calculated his voice could not be heard or heeded
during this pathetic, embarrassing scenario. I found him
to be the only republican candidate with the necessary
breadth of bipartisanship and experience to serve as
our president, but that ship, regrettably, has sailed.
Still, I'll likely write his name in on the November ballot.

"Remember in November"? Neither Donald nor Hillary
are my candidates, for reasons I have posted previously
on this blog and elsewhere. Being merely rich doesn't do it;
being merely experienced doesn't do it; intelligence,
character, judgement, morality, compassion and strength
could do it, but I do not see these attributes coming down
the presidential pike anytime soon.

Will Summer explode in many-faceted tensions and
disorders? It already has; wonder what Fall and Winter
will bring. If only we can arrive at the General Election
with some semblance of order, I, along with many, will
be able to relax and rejoice.

Friday, July 8, 2016

The USA in 2016: A Shame and a Sham

Everyone now knows what a sad shame our nation
has become, with all the white cop on black male
executions, and just last night in Dallas, sniper rifle
revenge killing five Dallas Police Officers,
wounding others...

But a sham? Yes, a sham. We tout ourselves as
as City on a Hill, orderly, prosperous, advanced,
a beacon of hope to millions around the world.
Yet, the world can plainly see that we are no
City on a Hill, that prosperity, justice and even
life is denied to many, and as to order, well,
WHERE is it??

I see an incipient race war fulminating, one
currently carried out in serial fashion, but war
it is nevertheless. Denial will only exacerbate
the conditions causing our very complex
national human relations dilemma. Doing
what we've always done, leaning heavily
on "tradition", is one of the grave signal
errors of this scenario, a torn tapestry
which should be discarded and woven anew.

A  federal think-tank task force must be
quickly created to erect new, effective
policy guidelines for admitting applicants
to our police departments, with extensive
background checks dating back to high
school, with new psychological screening
tests and better, more intensive role-play
training. Ignoring imperatives along these
lines insures more and escalating tragedies
of every stripe, new ones like the Dallas
sniper incident our future, I fear.

Stop bragging about how great our country
is or was, and 86 the term, "exceptional".
We are merely humans here, heir to every
frailty and flaw ever known to plague
mankind throughout history. Getting down
to brass tacks, rolling up our sleeves and
doing the serious work required to restore
trust and order is the only way out of our
national turmoil and disgrace.

Meanwhile, the USA in 2016 remains
a shame and a sham.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Sexual Perversity in Chicago: A "Third Brother Darrell" Bob Newhart Never Knew

An entire eleven pages in the Chicago Reader
(June 9th, 2016) and a follow-up two pages
(June 16th, 2016) were devoted to Profiles,
a non-equity theater specializing in REAL
on-stage violence and sexual violation--this is
NOT acting, any more than the gladiators'
performances at the Roman Colosseum were
acting OR "Art". ( The lions likely would agree.)

What can be said about all the actors and the
others at this small space who put up with
former Texan Darrell Christopher/Cox's
physical, sexual and verbal abuse? What were
the women thinking who allowed this behavior
to continue? Most of them had other jobs, so
Profiles was not necessary to life. --Did they
hunger to be watched THAT much??--EEW.

Don't get me started on the fools (AKA critics)
at the Jeff Awards, which honored Killer Joe
with three awards. They should take a time
machine back to the past, about 160 years or
more, and join the Know Nothing Party-they'd
fit right in. Along with the audience, they too have
trouble distinguishing reality from "realization".
Real people really acting, NOT acting out, deliver
important performances; anyone can be a brute, a
misogynist, etc. without a Hell of a lot of prompting
OR skill. P.S.: that tiny theater has space for 50; how
could anyone miss the mayhem? --"Intimate", indeed.

Some of the actors who knew Cox well declined to
be interviewed for the Reader's expose' is easy
enough to discern why: Darrell, who appears to be
a psychopath and a sociopath, is a large male, capable
of maiming or killing with his bare hands. These victims
now realize they were complicit in the crimes against
them on and off stage, never reported, very much like
abused spouses. Cox's Profiles peers felt mollified by
a full house night after night? That reminds me of the
gapers' block phenomenon, not art appreciation by
an audience of the cognoscenti.

One former Profiles employee described the whole
ensemble as resembling "a little bit of a cult" mentality.
--Try a LOT. Profiles should be closed. This much
perversity (craziness) must not be admired or desired.

Sexual Perversity in Chicago, originally a play by David
Mamet, later a  movie, has now become "a thing". If you
want to avoid such a seamy, degrading experience,
boycott Profiles and its ilk elsewhere in the theater world.

Darrell, a third brother Bob Newhart never knew.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Public Apathy: "We have met the enemy and he is us" Immortal cartoon Is STILL Right...

Back down the decades, Walt Kelly, creator of "Pogo" comic strip
wrote this immortal line, regrettably still true. Here's my latest

Dateline 06/22/2016: CBS Radio (Chicago feed, 780 am)
this morning informed us that last evening's Chicago public
meeting hosted by a panel of suitable experts from the City,
Chicago Public Schools, and environmental quality staff
regarding lead in drinking water at Chicago's schools
was attended by--the panel.

--Shocking? Not to me; dispiriting, Hell yes. Our somewhat
broken system still affords adult citizens here opportunities
to participate meaningfully in the public square. How does
anyone expect positive policy changes to occur without
more citizen input? The first step is voting, yes, yes, but the
requirements for our republic's continued existence and
health putatively posits participation at far greater levels:

(1) Call your elected officials with your questions, concerns
and improvement ideas. Call legislators anywhere in your
state and nation as well--why not? Are you not an adult
citizen, voter and taxpayer? If so, you have every right
AND obligation to do so,  SO, DO SO.

(2) Find groups and organizations which deal with your
matters of concern. They exist, check the web... haven't
got a pc, laptop, smart phone? Your local library likely
does, use them for free.

(3) You say, "I don't have the time, I have two jobs and
three kids", etc., ad infinitum. Make the time, if you truly
love your children, your city, your country, somehow,
make the time. It matters.

Stay tuned for more Amber nags; nattering nabob of
negativism (thank you, V.P. Spiro) signing out...

But first: public apathy enables the Trumps, Cruzes and
all others that would walk back our dearly-won rights
and freedoms to a previous era of slavery to the uncaring
super-rich and super ignorant. --Never forget this!

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Murderous Mateen: Twisted Terrorist and Homophobic Hater, Enabled by Insane Gun "Laws"

Dateline, June 12th, 2016, Orlando Florida:

Dear readers, how often have I said chaos is spreading, that
our frequently vaunted "system", society, shamefully approaches
a shambles? I want to be wrong about what we have seen;
sadly, regrettably, with much anguish AND anger, I am  still
correct, with no end to the horror in sight.

Orlando, site of happy, fun fantasies for young and old, will be
remembered now for the 50 dead and 53 wounded; the kind,
uplifting, unifying speeches by one and all, from Obama down
to the ordinary citizen cannot quell the fear and overreaction
spilling over after this nightmare episode. Several mosques have
been threatened, as has happened after other mass deadly-violent
episodes, some of the language attached to those threats
incomprehensibly irrational--surprise, surprise.

There is no rational, reasonable support for allowing anybody to
purchase military grade weaponry, from AR 15s to AK 47s.
This "legal" abuse of the Second Amendment MUST END.
The arms dealers and manufacturers should be supplying
these mass engines of  death  only to our military, period.
Memo to those who fear a government takeover of ordinary
citizens: you would never win in such a struggle, which hasn't
happened here in all our 229 years as a nation. Never forget
Ruby Ridge or Waco;  the past pretty much predicts the future,
as many psychosocial experts have long said regarding
human behavior...

So what's behind the wish to possess such dreadfully
deadly machines?

--Intent to kill, period. One rifle and one handgun
seem sufficient to defend/protect one's person, car,
home, military-style automatic weapons not needed.
--Illusions of power, a power such people DO NOT
possess --most die shortly after committing these
murders, by their own hand or that of others.
--Making a statement? Yes, of insanity, hatred,
horror, pain,  and outrage, little else.
--Unless the theory is to wear the West down, a la
the slow, inexorable Chinese water tortures of old,
we weakly, helplessly succumb, then, voila! a world-
wide caliphate is installed.   Memo to the ignorant/
inhumane: you are operating under a NO-GO theorem.
We will never surrender to your primitive, failed past
"system" of society/governance.

"We will not be ruled by fear", etc. Stay strong, yes,
but better be safe than sorry--I AM feeling a very
sensible fear, so will shun large, crowded events,
especially in Chicago, near where I live. I have
risked my life on many occasions, stopping certain
crimes on the street, but such incidents were one-
on-one propositions, not dark, crowded, confusing
conditions. Large, densely populated crowds are not
a place for a 71 year old, period; my crime-fighting
days are (mostly) over. Opportunites to participate
are still available at other than arena-type settings,
street parades, or dramatic, disorderly demonstrations.

Back to the "legal" abuse of the Second Amendment:
Right-wing republicans serving in DC better be careful:
many of you are up for re-election, have recently been
unmasked as the stumbling block to re-authorizing the
since 2004-expired automatic weapons ban. It is
obvious to most of us you are only interested in
YOURSELVES, not the safety of the nation. Many
powerful voices are being raised broadcasting this fact
--the drumbeat will continue; remember in November!

Murderous Mateen, twisted terrorist and homophobic
hater may have been a lone wolf, but he is scarcely
the only one. Only a determined, sensible legal system
can stop them and others--can we please create one,
since it does not now exist?

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Have Establishment Republicans Come too Late to the Party?

Let's list the recent arrivals to the newly configured, We Are Sane
Republicans Party; their membership is impressive:

* U.S. Senior Senator (R) KY Mitch McConnell
* Former U.S Speaker of the House (R) GA Newt Gingrich
* U.S. Junior Senator (R) IL Mark Kirk
* Current U.S. Speaker of the House (R) WI Paul Ryan
* U.S. Senator (R) SC Lindsey Graham
* U.S. Senator (R) FL Marco Rubio
* Gov. (R) OH John Kasich
* U.S. Senator (R) NE Ben Sasse
* U.S. Senator (R) ME Susan Collins
* U.S. Senator (R) OH Rob Portman
* U.S. Senator (R) SD  John Thune
Thanks to the Chicago Tribune, June 3rd, 2016
for fleshing out this list and the statements from
these pols. I'm certain there are more (-ad infinitum?)

--Aaaand the number of names will just roll on,
disavowing the Donald, courtesy of the newly-
awakened realization republicans of note have arrived
at--minorities vote, there are a LOT of them, most voters
are probably not racist, the democrats COULD
continue to keep the White House after November,
etc. ...Oh, yes, such racism, intransigence and ignorance
COULD cost some of these powerful republicans their
cushy seats in DC. How they howl as they scurry away
from Trump--is a "dump Trump" in the offing come July?

Regrettably, I am forced to conclude this latest spate of
scoldings (posturings) are attempts to align with the sane
side (right side) of history at last, at least apparently.
The few early exceptions to republicans supporting
Trump weren't numerous, influential, vocal or powerful
enough, sadly.

Memo to establishment republicans late to the party:
I can't/don't/won't believe you--where were you last year,
last month, last WEEK?