Sunday, December 27, 2009

To the Associated Press: My Pick for Editor of the Year

Dear Associated Press:

You've finally brought me to this, an imaginary conversation, with Dave Letterman, no less:

"Hello, Dave? Please bring back your old "Museum of the Hard to Believe" NOW, I found another really ridiculous item for you...The Associated Press has put TWO HORSES on their Top Female Athletes of the Year list! What, do these 30 or so editors want to return to a no women in sports era? Wow, are they out of touch, that ship sailed for the last time in the 1940's. --What about Atalanta, enshrined in eons-ago myth? --The hundreds of top echelon female (as in homo sapiens) athletes in many sports around the world?" --Olympic Gold winners?"

(Don't any of you editors have mothers, daughters, sisters, cousins and friends? Would you really wish to limit their choices because of your own insecurities? Strict cultural roles should have died for good when VERY masculine footballer Rosie Grier publicly took up needlepoint. Get up off your lazy (possibly flabby) fannies and get physical; stop spending so much time watching others pursue athletic excellence.)

"What's that, Dave? My pick for Editor of the Year? Mister Ed, natch."

Watch it, AP, I think I REALLY will call Dave.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Happy Holidays!


One for the old "Museum of the Hard to Believe"

Call Dave Letterman and ask him to bring back his very funny "Museum of the Hard to Believe",
because I have an amusing candidate item for it: "Our president was not born in the United States!" That's right, thousands of adult Americans apparently can't subtract 1959 (when Hawaii achieved statehood) from 1961 (when Barack Obama Jr. was born there). Last time I checked, "Birthers", our president was born TWO YEARS AFTER HAWAII BECAME A STATE.

Here is another sad example of "errors explored and revealed", but I'd like to call this
"Errors Explored and REVILED", because this false factoid should have died long ago, when Mr.
Obama became a Democratic Primary Presidential Candidate. But when have mere facts dissuaded prejudiced, ranting haters? Radio pundits like Rush Limbaugh stay on the air,
followers conveniently dismissing his many errors simply because they hate as he does.

Of course it is utterly American to criticize and object to various policies politicians propose
and/or pass, yet also time-wasting, distracting, upsetting and anti problem-solving to MANUFACTURE deleterious information designed to ruin a president's credibility.

So to the "birthers" and other fringe political groups: do the math. Literally, do the math.
Otherwise, Letterman gets a call.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Plouffe's Fluff, a New Book

I really recoiled while reading the four page excerpt of Obama Presidential Campaign manager
David Plouffe's new book, The Audacity of....(-well, he COULD have aimed at a bit more originality). Yes, he and other operatives had the traditional mechanics, strategy and logistics (....let's get a bunch of kids with Obama Tee shirts and clipboards onto some chartered buses NOW to knock on doors in Battleground Indiana...) of successful campaigning well in hand, but where is the substance? ("...Ax and I,...Ax and I" etc.) I must have missed the numerous instances when either David Axelrod or David Plouffe publicly betrayed any knowledge about any weighty subject such as science/health, world history/current affairs, anything else important to many of us, OTHER than politics.

David Plouffe as a writer is not new to me, or the many thousands of others who received campaign emails signed by him. All of the ones I read were distinguished by many generalizations employing hackneyed phrases, like the all-inclusive insulting "ordinary people just like you". Funny, those very few emissives signed by Mr. Obama himself were quite different, more erudite, more respectful.

Mr. President, please replace these campaign insiders and Chicagoland cronies soon.
You, and we, are not being very well served.

Bring Back Glass-Steagall, Investigate the SEC

(1) Simon Johnson
(2) Paul A.Volcker
(3) Joseph E. Stiglitz
(4) John Reed
(5) Michael Perino

These are some of the credentialed, experienced economists, worthy experts, who have recently publicly recommended Glass-Steagall (a 1930's very effective two-act set of banking regulations) be reenacted. The Clinton Administration and Gramm, Leach, et al, riding high on the recovery from the 1992 recession, allowed Glass-Steagall to lapse in 1999, heralding the hedge fund, derivatives-based, wild banking sprees which in large measure brought on the 2008-2009 Great Recession. "It's a new era, requiring more latitude, less regulations..we can all get rich!" (That was the argument promulgated by '90's bank-paid lobbyists, the same thinking of the '20's on-spec stock "margin-magic" morons.)

Why isn't The Obama White House heeding such sage advisers as
Simon Johnson of MIT and the IMF, or Paul Volcker,
the still-respected economist who preceded Alan Greenspan?
I have a notion, a most unattractive one: other, vested-interest
advisers surrounding the President. I'll mention two:
Emanuel and Giannoulias, both from Illinois, both of whom
have wealth derived from banks,
two men who can scarcely be objective about reining in the
banking community. Many others in the inner circle
are tightly bound by
too-recent ties to Wall Street and the "too-big-to fail"
banks as well; T. Geithner was/is an extremely poor choice for
Treasury Secretary.

Spectacular SEC failure to regulate and investigate Wall Street and the big banks requires more
investigations by Congressional Rep. Barney Frank and the House Finance Committee...again, the SEC has too-incestuous ties to the persons and institutions which caused our current crisis.

"Pure" economic theories can't work on Earth in 2009; I believe they never have. In America,
most economists say we have a "mixed" economy, with publicly-funded entities such as
police forces, schools and libraries, as well as private corporations. WE HAVE NEVER HAD pure Laissez-Faire in the United States, so the extreme, deregulation advocates need to find a different dream.

Humanity does have a dark side, a selfish side, a short-term standard side. Almost everyone is sometimes guilty of these behaviors, me included. But when the stakes are high, when millions can be unjustly, needlessly hurt by the thoughtless, powerful few, it would be a great blessing to know sane and sensible regulations exist to protect us all....

So, let's all stick a pin in Congress. Call your senators and house reps, ask them to be brave:
Bring back Glass-Steagall, investigate the SEC.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Facing, Even Embracing, Facebook Again

I haven't changed my opinion regarding Facebook's overly-proprietary "we own our customers"
attitude/policies; yet, after a loved one's coaxing, I let her open a new Facebook account for me. This one will be for and with her, she really wanted it; AND what has my righteous harrumphing on the earlier post gotten me? Little commiseration or understanding, to say the least.

The simplest, most rational expression probably should be: if a Facebook customer wants off of
"the cloud" (an account on the web), the company should facilitate that. Everyone else can
socialize to their hilarious content.

But the upcoming/ongoing lawsuits still bear watching.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Facebook Follies: Emauled by Facebook

Facebook behaves as though they own you, or me: just try to remove your Facebook listing,
if you created one, and an outrageously enlightening experience may ensue. I followed all the prompts, sent VERY FIRM emails TO Facebook, promising legal action, etc....but I'm still out there, in limbo in the "cloud", very possibly electronically bothering every person or organization I have ever emailed, quite against my will or prior knowledge. But the young "genius" creator of Facebook, and all his addlepated admin colleagues don't know me: I have age, experience, a fierce tenacity, and a high I.Q. I have and know something else, too: FACEBOOK DOES NOT OWN ME.

About two years ago, I tried MySpace. I wasn't crazy about the setup, so, after ten days, MySpace graciously, easily acceded to my cancel request, issuing me a cancellation
confirmation number. So the technology DOES exist....but Facebook wants to count EVERY
PERSON who ever tried to obtain a Facebook Account, publishing the lamest rationale in their defense, paraphrased to wit: "Well, when someone wants to reactivate his account, it will be
ready..." Oh rubbish! There are new social websites every year (-or month, perhaps) and competition is brisk, so, once a customer, always a customer, like it or not...a numbers game, even if the numbers mislead.

Facebook allegedly already faces some legal embarrassments regarding this and other technical/policy snafus. I suggest these young turks obtain objective, rigorous legal advice, THEN TAKE IT.

Remember the Milwaukee "414's"? They were sooo clever, hacking away with impunity, but
finally caught, embarrassed, brought down a peg or two. This current eproblem is reminiscent
of that scene from years back, but then, history is often repeated, idiot humans refusing to learn
and retain important lessons.

Emauled by Facebook? A class action suit could be in its future.

Stay tuned.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Public Outcry Denies Public "Option"

-Boy oh boy! The town hall I saw, recently televised by PBS, showed me a bewilderingly dangerous lack of understanding among the American polity.

I don't remember what town, which week, which experts appeared on the panel, because I was
immediately overtaken by a shocking insight:

Neither the panelists, nor the audience, seemed to realize what the word "option" actually means. Option means choice, meaning one can CHOOSE...which should not have taken on the politically-loaded, pejorative connotation perceived by the anti-abortion contingent in the U.S. (oh, YES, Democrats ARE involved, so that must mean the issues are exactly the SAME, all across the factual, moral, ethical, practical landscape.)

For anyone still confused, dismissive, or merely suspicious:

Any American would have the right to retain their current insurance provider, purchase private
insurance if they don't have any now, --OR--

Choose THE PUBLIC OPTION. There would, most probably, be income limitations to qualify for the Option, so as to not bankrupt insurance companies across the country. This is not a mandate, command, demand, etc.

Why then, since this seems like a straightforward notion, has The Tower of Babble been erected again over this?

Everybody, this ISN'T THAT HARD.....let's recur to a dictionary when obvious confusion erupts.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

A Grave Situation at Suburban Cemeteries

It might be wise to stay in the car these days when visiting your loved one's graves;
cemeteries are the new "strong arm" locations in some smaller suburbs around Chicagoland.
A few thefts have been reported within the past few weeks, possibly more.

At least two savvy ladies I know have changed their "visitation style" recently: They simply drive to within 30 feet of the grave marker, remain locked in the car, windows up and locked, cell at the ready.

The one I'm thinking of was last Sunday, between Noon and 1 p.m., which is somewhat startling,
since most of us probably still generally feel safer in broad daylight; this was a perfect sunny day,
only a few fluff-puffs of cloud....

I have NOT been protected, carefully kept, etc. Somehow, though, this shocked me more for human and aesthetic reasons than the usual painful litany of weapons violence, deaths, etc. This situation, even without violent outcomes, ranks with harm to young children, animals, and...

Remember "Hill Street Blues"? Let's be smart and careful out there.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Can We Let Anybody Fall by the Wayside?

Reams are being written about all the complexities swirling around the current administration's
health care proposals. I propose to simplify the entire agument, because it IS simple, stark
as well:

(1) Those who object to a public health plan simply don't want to contribute to any stranger's
well-being. They don't care what happens to those less fortunate, bitterly resenting the necessity of putting in any of their kale to help someone else....never mind the fact that wealthy Americans
realize their success in this country, so should be willing to do their part and support those in need. Those blessed with wealth better know that they might become needy someday, themselves.

(2) There are other, public health and safety issues which occur when too many are allowed to become ill and untreated: the spread of contagious diseases, like TB, pneumonia, many others. Resentment bred of unfeeling neglect often contributes to a rise in crime, creating more costs,
disorder and tragedy, ultimately undermining the nation's health.

So, yes, let's not let too many fall by the wayside--we could eventually find ourselves there as

Friday, July 24, 2009

The Knee-Jerk Stupidity of Profiling Prof. Gates

If it's true that Professor Henry Louis Gates of Harvard was already inside his home, having proven residency before the officer arrested him, then I think the officer WAS indeed stupid,
and yes, "profiling" (racism) seems to have occurred. This policeman's colleagues didn't distinguish themselves, either; they appeared to be shocked that they could ever be accused of less than stellar behavior. So here's a news flash for them and everybody else: everyone commits acts of stupidity before they die, a bitter, inevitable fact of life. The president was right to defend his friend; I would have recognized Prof. Gates, but then, I've seen him often on PBS.

Mr. Obama, don't bother setting up a future "kumbaya" meeting with this cop, you have far more important issues to attend to--the economy, health care, Afghanistan, foreign relations, etc. You really don't have the time, and shouldn't have the focus.....please move on. Let Prof. Gates, a very capable individual, handle this; he may choose to file for harassment, or take other action.

Meanwhile, the rest of us need you.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Mistaken Mix: Guns and Alcohol

Arizona's governor has just signed legislation permitting guns to be taken into his state's bars.
Has he taken leave of his senses? I bet Arizona police officers and bar owners are jumping
for joy over this one....aren't alcohol-fueled fist fights enough excitement? Just who sponsored
this legislation to begin with? Who gains? It will be interesting to see the reaction after the first
fatality by a gun-toting drunk in a bar. (Good luck!)

To make matters more absurd, the NRA pushed Congress to pass a bill allowing these conceal
and carry gun toters the freedom to travel to any other state with their weapons; the proposal
failed, thankfully, if narrowly. That means some of our representatives have also taken leave
of THEIR senses. Recently a woman dropped her gun in a public washroom stall and it discharged, shooting a woman in the thigh. Has no one on the pro-gun side realized just how many klutzes there are, how many accidental injuries and deaths will occur if everybody is allowed to carry at will?

Just what IS America's love affair with guns about, anyway? Behind it all I detect a massive
insecurity and fear, a keen desire to feel powerful....but carrying a gun doesn't really make someone powerful, just dangerous.

There are much better ways to improve self-esteem.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Errors Galore, These and More

How to choose? I've noticed so many wrong statements and actions lately my head
is spinning! But here are a few:

(1) What was the cousin thinking? She leaves a two year old girl, her cousin, in an UNLOCKED
car, while she runs into a convenience store. When she returned, the child was missing. Why is it
sooo much work to carry a two year old into a store? How careless, thoughtless, and lazy, are the people who employ such a "shortcut"?

(2) The author of a new children's book is spreading a bad idea: It's ok to feed pets chocolate.
But dogs and cats can't eat chocolate, it can be fatal. Sugar Would Not Eat It, by Emily Jenkins,
tells the tale of a cat owner who attempts to feed his cat chocolate cake; the cat, sensibly, turns
up her nose at this treat, refusing it. I didn't read this book, only a review, but if Ms. Jenkins doesn't emphasize the dangers of chocolate here, she is doing a great disservice to pets everywhere.

(3) Now to PETA: Oh good grief, leave Mr. Obama alone! He didn't kill a butterfly or a ladybug,
but a housefly. These insects are filthy, not caring where they alight, such as on a pile of dog
detritus, and they bite. So why the great hue and cry? PETA needs to find something else
to DO.

(4) Then there is the storm chaser who took his 8 and four year old sons along while chasing a giant tornado, getting WAY too close. Where was the boys' mother? Did she approve? What is wrong with this father, anyway? How about the local child welfare authorities, they also dropped
the ball here.

(5) There is also the father who abused his children, one of which is only three, on network TV.
He favored smacking them in the mouth, frequently walking around the house clutching a leather belt. Why didn't the network notify police? It took a neighbor, watching the show, to be alarmed
enough to make that call.

I'm beginning to believe adults who want to have children should be required to be tested and
licensed before being allowed such a privilege.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

"America's Worst Mom": Bad Logic

In her defense, she's certainly not among the worst moms; I have known far worse, less
caring "biological moms" in my 64 years. However, I detected serious lapses in logic in the recently published one and a half-paged excerpt from her 2009 book, Free Range Kids....lapses which I pray will not harmfully impact her charmer of a son, now ten.

"The Week" publishes its longest feature, The Last Word, two or three pages from the magazine's back. Another week, another author: this issue, Lenore Skenazy is featured, explaining why she allowed her then nine year old son to take the NYC subway home alone, from Bloomingdale's in downtown Manhattan. Then Ms. Skenazy wrote a column about it for The New York Sun, which resulted in her appearance on morning TV, etc., etc. Recently a conductor on a commuter line (Ms. S. declined to state which) called police when the now ten-year old lad explained he'd ridden alone but would be picked up by car at disembarking.

What follows are quotes from this author, with rebuttals from me:

(1) ......"that may sound a little scary, but it's not. Here in New York, families are on the subway all the time. It's extremely, even statistically, safe......"

Rebuttal: It IS somewhat dangerous, not to say disingenuous, to act on the notion that New York City is one of the safest places for lone children under 13 (often physically slight, like this boy) to roam alone at will. No amount of training, which this mother says she has given her son, is adequate defense against the insane on the streets (and subways), pedophiles, etc. Notice her key word, "families", is irrelevant: The boy travelled ALONE, no family. As to any other "families" who may/may not feel inclined to help if an incident occurs, how is the presence of some families necessarily of help to her? She's right, there is chance in this world; but our job as parents is to minimize the negative effects of chance until at least puberty, when the child is significantly larger.

(2) ......."Our murder rate is back to where it was in 1963....."

Rebuttal: She should, as a competent journalist (which I question), recall that "rate" equates to per capita numbers--so that actually means there are MORE deviant, as well as normal, people around now, period.... the random nature of mingling with the public in crowds and on mass transit should alarm her, because there is not, alas, any straightforward person-per-
capita-chance-of-encounter-ratio every day. On day one, there might be all normal and kindly
folk around; on the next, three, four or more "troubled souls" will come across someone's path,with a potential for disaster. If Ms. S. doesn't realize that people are often sizing others up for any kind of weakness, she is not as widely read as media people should be, but seldom are now. All microbiologists, zoologists, geneticists, anatomists, naturalists and other life scientists state unequivocally that humans are animals also; it's wise to remember it.

(3)....."The idea that we should provide [total safety] for our children every second of every day...It's as if we don't believe in fate anymore....."

Rebuttal: I definitely disagree that Determinism should be any loving parent's guiding philosophy. So, no, besides catastrophic, genetically induced illness or freak accident, I reject "Fate" for children. Of course, every-moment-of-the-day safety is impractical once kids start school, but every reasonable effort should still be made, poetic interviewer allusions to "cotton wool" to the contrary.

(4)...."Mostly, the world is safe. Mostly, the world is good...."

Rebuttal:--If only! No, young single mom (from the photo), it is NOT mostly good and safe. In India and China, despite the glowing reports of the rise of their middle classes, most people are STILL underfed, living in unsafe conditions. Sex and domestic slavery exists in many countries, in our hemisphere, even HERE. (Unless one is prepared to deny the thoroughgoing journalism of
Frontline/PBS and other, credible sources.) Too many examples abound, African countries, etc.

I won't continue my diatribe about Ms. Skenazy's poor and dangerous logic. She has very likely (so far) not experienced some of the worst the world can deliver, but I HAVE:

--Kidnapped in St. Paul, MN, at 11 a.m. on my way to work, years ago, extricated myself without
help; the guy had a gun.

--Molested by a passing bicyclist on the sidewalk one block from my home--I ran around several blocks to get him, but lost him....this was a "good" northwest side Chicago neighborhood.

--Molested by an 18 year old neighbor boy in my own "nice and clean" south side San Antonio, TX home, while all the adults were beering and BBQ-ing out back. (These adults weren't
particularly caring parents at any time.) I was 11.

I've stopped crimes in progress against others on and off over the past 30+ years, mostly in Chicago, but occasionally elsewhere; I don't need the press, a posse, or a red beret, like the Sliwas of NYC, to do this. I'm delighted and satisfied to have helped many people, but I can tell you, every one of the many incidents occurred in public, and NO ONE ELSE stepped forward BUT me. By the way, at least three of these episodes took place on mass transit, one on a Greyhound bus during a storm, between Iowa and Illinois.

I wonder how any well-read, retentive adult can be very comforted by the feel-good PR pronouncements from big city mayors claiming encouraging lower crime statistics. (For those of
you Big Apple boosters, former Mayor Giuliani's famous, somewhat effective "Zero Tolerance"
anti-crime program was a DIRECT LIFT from the University of Chicago's famous Dr. James Q. Wilson. He's the criminologist who coauthored a text explaining his "Broken Window" theory, which is identical to the zero tolerance philosophy--published about ten years before New York
hard charging prosecutor/mayor G. spouted his not original, merely renamed "theory".)
Statistics are inherently and frequently wrong--look at poor Mexico City, variously stated
to have had 159, 150, 42 or 22 confirmed N1H1 deaths. Which is the right number? Similar U.S.
problem numbers are quoted here, everyday--I find them.

We adults must somehow devise the right safety culture for our kids--neither enclosing them
in a plastic bubble nor adopting a "sink or swim" social darwinism mentality. Ms. Lenore
Skenazy, in my opinion, has not found that thoughtful, careful center. I hope she does, for her
son's sake, and for her own.

Monday, May 4, 2009

More Errors, Revealed and Reviled

There has been a positive outbreak of damaging errors lately, but I'll simply select some of the important ones:

(1) A premature, world-wide panic about the current, relatively mild strain of influenza caused it to be renamed H1N1, as the U.S. pork industry objected strenuously and effectively to "Swine Flu". Among the media and political overdramatizations, Mexico was clocked at 150 deaths from this virus, until a few days ago, when the figure was lowered to 22, far less alarming. (A more recent tally bumped it up to 42.) The chief blame belongs to the media, for seldom distinguishing between suspected vs. confirmed cases and fatalities.

Then we heard V.P. Joe Biden, a supposedly brilliant politician, talk about family, airplanes and subways, in a panicky message to hole up away from confined spaces/places. (Some of us still recall his enormous campaign gaffe regarding "FDR's Fireside Chats on TV ", which in fact were radio broadcasts, hence the word "chat".)

Indeed, H1N1 could return in a yet again mutated form a few months from now, frighteningly virulent, reminiscent of the 1918 Pandemic. But as we're not there yet, let's just get the necessary meds together and deployment ready, with the usual reminders about hand washing, crowd avoidance, etc. Too many businesses and schools were shut for too long a period during this recession, just what we didn't need.

(2) Politicians who pontificate erroneously about facts to oppose legislation really should lose their jobs, i.e., Congresswomen Ms. V. Foxx and Ms. Michelle Bachmann-- again, a fast and loose treatment of FDR's era: It was the Smoot-Hawley Tariff, passed in the waning days of Hoover, not FDR, which contributed to the Great Depression. And the murder of Matthew Shepard WAS a hate crime, too bad if any anti-gay sentiment blinds one to that reality.

It is a daunting, yet necessary responsibility to stay informed; when we aren't,
everybody pays.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Memo to our Oligarchs: Don't look now, but....

This is no time to relax, even though you may think so, since you felt emboldened enough to
"stand down" the new president and his people at the end of April. Credit card company CEOs
who walked out of Mr. Obama's chiding sessions had tersely commented that regulations coming
in 2010 will "suffice", as the French put it inimitably, "the more things change, the more they stay the same": big money, big mouth, big intransigence.

Laissez-Faire, arch-conservative Ayn Rand's "objectivism" (-really subjectivism, or, "it really IS
all about me") will NOT work, not ever, just as a completely controlled economy, i.e., Socialism,
Communism, Monarchy, Theocracy, Fascisim, et al, can't work.

Extremists of the world, take heed!

We may yet get the laws we need.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Great Media Panic of 2009

To Employees of the U.S. Media:

We have NOT arrived at the doorstep of the Great Depression--the statistics do not compare.
Yes, the world-wide nature of the current, serious recession is the same, but for different
reasons; yes, banks are involved, but again, the causative factors differ greatly.

(1) As of April, 2009, unemployment in the U.S. has not even reached 10%, whereas in the
1930's, ONE out of FOUR were unemployed.

(2) FDR closed more banks, and for longer, than we see now; again, the causes were different.

(3) The U.S. is not experiencing a Dust Bowl, which seriously complicated our economy
in that long past era.

The last recession that meaningfully compares to 2008-2009 was 1979-1982, when national jobless rates rose to 10% on average, with places like Peoria, Illinois quoting 18%.
But certain panic-peddling pundits all around the media have badly frightened the public with erroneous warnings. I believe this phenomenon has actually contributed to unemployment! For
months we were told we were about to return to those desperate days in the '30's. TV commentators described panic and more doom ahead, while simultaneously quoting misleading
"facts and figures".

Lately, however, more accurate and encouraging reports have gradually surfaced: instead of
this being "the worst economy in 80 years", the quote is now,"... in 26 years", which is the correct comparison. Every day I see a few more revised reports, which should gradually
reduce the nation's fright level. Debt, credit issues and unemployment are all real, deep
problems, of course; suffering is all too why exacerbate them? Just to get another TV
appearance invitation?

I can only hope journalists and other "experts" will keep doing their research.
When they don't, I'll be here.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Refutations, Reputations, other Errata

To: All February's Anonymous Posters at "Proviso Insider"

RE: The April Maywood Illinois Elections

Your credibility is greatly enhanced when you sign your NAMES.
Good grammar, correct spelling, and an apprehension of the facts greatly assists here as well.

(1) Not paying one's property taxes in an Illinois village or city keeps that person off that village's
ballot, by state law. Utility bills were not the issue in Maywood. Property tax records and
property sale transactions have been a matter of public record for decades, through
newspapers, the web, the Cook County Treasurer's office, other places as well. Utility bills
and other records, like credit card use, can be accessed legally by various authorities
under certain select circumstances.

(2) Mayor Harold Washington's opponents didn't use utility bills as grounds to keep him off
the ballot in Chicago; they asserted he hadn't paid income taxes for years, but he HAD
PAID, through payroll deductions. Mr. Washington simply neglected to file tax returns.

(3) Mayor Henderson Yarbrough DOES show up to his "day job", which has him traveling to
several different sites very frequently. I know because I called him on his cell there;
other workers have come up to him to ask questions while we talked! Maywood has
a part time Mayor, with a laughably tiny salary of $15K/per annum, so someone must love
Maywood a great deal to want the position.

Here's who looks foolish, at any time: anyone who publishes an anonymous rant absent the facts.
Please do your research, everybody! Anyone can be partisan or opinionated (I certainly am),
but ignoring or distorting the facts in the quest to move public opinion and/or action, WELL,
that's a "no-go theorem". If I see it done, wherever I find it, I will challenge it, here and elsewhere.

Best Wishes,
Amber F. Ladeira
A.K.A.: Former Proofreader, Still Checkin'