22nd December 2010


I am a sports fan. Maybe not a junkie, but an avid fan.  All sports. From my early days,  I grabbed the sports page before the funnies  and still do. In school years, I tried all of the ball sports and even won a few letters using my mediocre skills.  And I was a whiz in the sports trivia games  —  names and statistics. Eventually I became hooked on baseball, football and golf.  They are still my favorites.

Fall is my favorite time of the year  —  the World Series of baseball, big golf events  and the football bowl games.  The bowl games were special to me since the best teams were invited to the prestige Bowl games –  Rose, Orange, Sugar, Cotton, Gator, Fiesta , etc —based on the best records. Top Flight teams and quality games. Now all of that has changed and bowl games are sort of dime a dozen. This year there are about 40 games bearing peculiar titles and played by very average teams. How about Little Ceasars pizza bowl, Beef O’Brady bowl, MAACO Bowl, and other commercial titles. To use a time tested double entendre, four quarters make a dollar. All a team has to do to qualify for bowl selection is win 6 games out of 12. A bowl sponsorship  is simply a new way to get broad based product publicity whether there are any people in the stands or not. When it comes to prestige, can you imagine a trophy case featuring a pizza bowl triumph??  Or maybe a muffler repair?? The whole notion of a big win over a strong foe has been diluted and sacrificed to commercial advertising. If my home team is in a bowl, I might watch on TV.  Maybe. Maybe not.

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17th October 2010


Back in my formative years an unmistakable symbol of masculinity was blue jeans. All the guys had them and wore them on virtually all occasions.  Aside from military garb, these were the “he-man” outfits. Then it suddenly dawned on the apparel marketing gurus that the industry was overlooking  –  or ignoring  –  more than 50%  of the potential jeans market —-  women.

The advertising plans came quickly and the era of women wearing jeans arrived.  The marketing and advertising were both spectacularly successful and now we see women wearing jeans everywhere  –  schools, malls, grocery stores, movies, professional offices, hospitals,  stadiums, airlines,  —–  everywhere. there is no end in sight. Men still wear jeans, but increasingly jeans  are seen as female attire. But in all of this change I see no evidence of inquiry as to whether the female physique is really suited to jeans.  I am a skeptic.  Maybe 40 % could pass a basic test, but not the remainder. For most women, the jeans waistline looks more like a storage zone for Ford 250 tires, and the view from the rear looks like  two cats fighting in a gunny sack.  I will concede that for slender  ladies with an hour glass figure and a firm fanny, jeans are a winner. For the others it is a losing battle.

Now I am beginning to wonder what we will do with hundreds of thousands or millions of pairs of jeans when the fashions change. Pity the third world  people dealing with all of those used jeans. With his fancy to be more like the man in the street, do you think that Obama will start to show up in  jeans at press conferences?? Somehow, he does not strike me as a Wrangler or Levis kind of guy. Of course he still doesn’t react to good advice when he gets it.  Never know!

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2nd July 2010

Obama decision making

     Long before the Obama tsunami washed over John McCain in the fall of  ‘o8, his political skills and talents were well recognized.  But while conceding youth and verbal skills there remained serious reservations about his experience (or lack thereof) in  foreign affairs, economics, military matters and government spending  — and if anything, those reservations have been heightened over the past year. It seems as though anything he touches turns to mud.  His track record in both the Illinois legislature and the US Senate is very revealing. In both arenas, he has disdained Yes/No decisions and has opted to vote “present” . It seems to me that voting “present” is just one step short of “form a committee” or” hire a consultant.”  For sure it does not qualify as making a decision.   In thinking back to my academic years, there was an old adage that  said “never trust a politician who ducks tough issues by voting “present”.

      Come to think of  it, I don’t know whether it qualifies as an old political adage or not. But if it doesn’t, it should.  We don’t have to look far for proof.

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21st April 2010


Make no mistake, Prez Obama is formidable political figure –   he is youthful, energetic, well spoken, television talented, knowledgeable, and has PR savvy.  But if you put all of his considerable talents together they fall well short of quality experience, leadership, and common sense. Certainly his efforts at personal command of foreign policy has fallen flat. With all of the hoopla over Hillary as SecState, we might ask, “What does she do?” while Obama globe trots.

With all of that, he clearly does have one great talent  –  Spending huge amounts of money  –  someone else’s money  –  with scant attention paid to mere details like paying for his grandiose programs. At the base level of his schemes is a thorough knowledge of how to get his hands on lots of money. Three main ways. 1) Printing money  2) borrowing money 3) taxing citizens

Printing money …….   see US Mint

Borrowing  …….    see China

Taxes  …….  see Citizens of USA

The ABCs of  the Obama Administration.  No secrets here.  Most of us dislike 4 letter words like….”debt”, but not Obama. “Spending” is his priority. His flowery speeches are taking us down a very worrisome path. And are we safer under his military policies?  Not as far as I can see!!

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21st March 2010

Obama health care

At 8:40 PST on 3/28/10 Obama and his henchmen committed this country to a long one way road to socialized medicine. If you like bigger government, higher taxes,  higher insurance premiums, and higher medical bills, you will love it. He got it done via legislative chicanery, arm twisting, political bribery, and just plain threats. Now we will get a full treatment of flowery rhetoric.  And the word “socialism” will not appear. but that is what it is.  The last step was a couple of Executive Orders which amount to nothing.  Rep. Bart Stupak took the bait on the abortion issue and now we’ll have to wait and see how Obama weasels out of that commitment. Moral of the story  …  tomorrow means nothing. Only today counts.

     Stupak might think about that.    Obama has the votes and Stupak might wind up with a n empty bag. Next comes jobs, jobs and jobs. Despite all the fancy words, there is no such thing as a “job” until someone hires someone to perform a given task.  I wonder if it ever occurs to Obama et al, that the best way to get someone hired is to create an employment  environment favorable to  employers.  The answer certainly is not more regulations and heavier taxes from the heavy hand of government. Most people understand that, but Washington???

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20th January 2010


In  1954 a hit movie starring actress Judy Garland was “A star is born”. I don’t recall much about the movie, but the title registered with me and I have recalled it on occasion over the years. The most recent occasion was the appearance of Sarah Palin at the 2007 Republican Convention . She appeared as a relative stranger and over night became a household name.  She reinvigorated the Republicans and presented an unexpected force (challenge) to Obama and the Democrats who quickly undertook the task of trying to destroy her. That effort continues today via the hostile left wing press and media. However, her messages resonate among a healthy segment of the political population and her visibility remains high (see book sales).  In the 2012 elections she will be a force. Her star has been born and is thriving.

Now a new star has been born.  Scott Brown.  His huge win in Massachusetts  has catapulted him onto the front pages of newspapers and magazines all over the country. He has all of the attributes of  a successful candidate and a well spoken leader. Good looking, good vocabulary, good presence of mind, good sense of humor, and well versed on the issues of the day. For sure, a star has been born in Massachusetts. I wonder if Ted Kennedy is turning over in his grave.

Want to take any bets that both Sarah and Scott will be on the podium at the 2012 Republican convention?? The only thing better than a new star is two new stars.

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31st December 2009


As the unemployment level rose beyond 7% back in 2008, the Obama administration identified it as a major priority for strong Federal action. Nobody looked upon high unemployment as being acceptable  — even on a short term basis. Hence, the Stimulus Bill  –  almost  a $800 Billion  — aimed at creating private sector jobs on projects dubbed “shovel ready”.  But instead of dropping, unemployment rose to more than 10% and has stayed there. By any math model, the Stimulus program has been a colossal failure  –  a total flop. In order to buttress their contentions of success, the numerical scorekeeping by Democrats has been downright laughable. Now the Prez wants to take the unspent money and spend it on do-gooder government projects.  No more discussions about shovel ready.

Virtually all economists agree that the real engine of job creation is in the small business private sector of the economy –  not the  public sector. All the private sector gets is more burdensome regulations and higher taxes.  We might ask Mr Obama, “Exactly what are you trying to fix??”

This assumes that he has some kind of plan. Not very clear to me.

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11th December 2009


Back in the days of the cold war there was a favorite term used to describe politicians who equivocated or vacillated on key issues in dealing with the USSR.  These are the folks who talked tough and then hid from the hard facts that could not be ignored. They said all of the right things and were very “hawk-like” until it came to decision time. Then they “chickened out”.  Hence came the term “chicken hawks “.

In watching our Prez and listening to his rhetoric, I think it is time to dust off the chicken hawk nomenclature and pin a badge of feathers on his lapel. When the first duty of  the President is to secure the welfare of the country and its citizens it is not too comforting to have a chicken hawk sitting in the White House.

Back in the 60s and 70s the chicken hawks were confident that we could negotiate our way around, through, or over any international issue.  Sound familiar?? All we need is a good microphone and sound batteries. Obama might think that the verbal skills of Churchill and FDR made all the difference in winning WWII.  Sure,  —that plus the willingness to commit an Army, Navy and Air Force  —  and the decision  to use them.

Do you really think that we can pursuade the Iranians, Koreans, etc.,  to give up their nukes??  Why should they believe Obama?  Based on events to date, would you?? If we eventually have some kind of showdown, who will be the first to blink?  Maybe the Prez should check the oddsmakers in Las Vegas.

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4th December 2009


Sarah Palin arrived on the national political scene at the 2008 Republican Convention last fall and made an immediate impact on the political scene  –  particularly among women.The Obama camp was caught flat-footedand had an immediate strategy council meeting to decide what to do about Sarah. Almost immediately the game plan was to destroy Sarah.  With no holds barred, the targets were Sarah, her spouse, her family, her kids, her role as Governor of Alaska, her education, etc etc.  Anything and everything. The attack dogs of the major media were turned loose.  Simple objective  –  Destroy Sarah.

As a part-time stay at home political junkie, I have followed with interest the skirmishes between Sarah and the major media gurus over the past year, including the past 3 months in which she has re-emerged as a major voice on the national scene, to say nothing of her new book recently published with great success. While I understand the strategy of the Democrats,  the harshness and viciousness of the media assaults are hard to accept. She is attractive, well spoken, knowledgeable, and a far cry from the political destructiveness of the left wingers. Clearly, her messages have  resonated strongly with voters of all persuasions on the major issues of the day. Will she seek high office next year?  Probably not. Will she speak out to endorse candidates of her preferences?  Undoubtedly, yes.  Does she have political ambitions?  Yes, no doubt. Can she win the Presidency?  Doubtful. But she will be a powerful force in any national election, and the Democrats know it.

Would I vote for her?  Yes, if I have a chance. If experience is a pre-requisite, what about Obama??

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3rd December 2009


The primary yardstick used to gauge the depth of the current recession is the unemployment  rate.  A year or so ago it hovered between 7 and 7.5 %. Responding to that urgent problem, Obama and his advisory team came up with a Stimulus package priced at about $800,ooo,ooo,000. That’s right  –  $800 Billion. During the past year, the unemployment rate has surged to 10.2 %.  Obviously the Stimulus package has been a disastrous flop. Whatever became of the “shovel ready” projects?? Now, some of his Democratic  supporters are talking about a Stimulus II  —  you know, when in doubt, throw more money at it. In trying to justify the 2008 Stimulus package, the reports of job creation (and/or job saving) have been downright laughable, including job creation in phantom non-existent  Congressional districts. Yoo-hoo, anyone driving this train??

Even left wing economists concede that real job creation rests with small businesses. The economy doesn’t await the IBMs and Chevrons to hire thousands of new employes. Rather, the prime mover is thousands of small businesses hiring 5-10-20 people or so apiece.  Doesn’t it make senses to help small business owners instead of imposing more and more burdensome taxes on them? Instead of impressive rhetoric, a few pro business measures might be the real stimulus that is needed.

Are you listening, Mr Prez??

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