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Articles Archive for May 2009

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[30 May 2009 | One Comment | ]

The postcard view is the idealized view, and the view of material production as an American cultural ideal is a thing of the past. When made, postcards were perfect versions of the present, and with age, they acquire a rose-colored patina and become perfect versions of the past. But nostalgia for a past we never knew ought to be avoided. Rather, the postcards are more useful as references for making subtle comparisons between what was, and what now is. In the context of a global economy and a greatly decentralized …

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[29 May 2009 | No Comment | ]

SPIEGEL: Mr. Payne, early in June your great-nephew, President Barack Obama, will visit the former concentration camp Buchenwald, which you helped liberate at the end of the war. Will he be travelling in your footsteps?
Charles Payne: I don’t buy that. I was quite surprised when the whole thing came up and Barack talked about my war experiences in Nazi Germany. We had never talked about that before. This is a trip that he chose, not because of me I’m sure, but for political reasons.
Charles Payne
Great Uncle of Barack Obama
Spiegel Magazine
May …

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[29 May 2009 | 10 Comments | ]

While few would disagree with Tom Roeser’s view that the GOP is bereft of leadership, he has completely missed the boat in his commentary on Adam Andrzejewski.
Tom’s primary issue seems to be his “lack of experience” in governance.  Adam makes the point (which I agree with) that all this experience has gotten us exactly nowhere.  Ryan and Blagojevich had long resumes in governance.  Mike Madigan is perhaps the most savvy politician in Illinois.  Together, these folks have driven the state into a ditch.
Adam’s campaign stands for the proposition that experience …

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[29 May 2009 | Comments Off | ]

Standard & Poor’s fired a shot heard round the world last week. It said it was reviewing the triple-A credit rating of the United Kingdom. This was happening despite planned tax hikes, because the debt burden was to rise to 100% of GDP.

Although S&P said nothing about the US, the financial markets went into panic mode anyway, worrying that big spending fiscal policies could put the US’s AAA-rating in jeopardy. The dollar fell sharply and yields on long-term Treasury securities jumped by 30 basis points. At this point, any downgrade …

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[29 May 2009 | No Comment | ]

Jay Bennett, the guitarist for the Chicago band Wilco, has died at age 45. Bennett a native of Rolling Meadows, Illinois had a long career in the music business, and could easily be dismissed as just another job related fatality in his chosen industry. Years of the rock-and-roll lifestyle, some serious cigarette smoking, and the erratic nature of royalty checks do not figure well on actuarial tables.
Reading through the Chicago Tribune reader comments, within some heartfelt eulogizing, there are some vile put downs of Benett (and musicians in general). A …

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[28 May 2009 | 7 Comments | ]

By all odds, the Illinois Republican party should be out on the hustings with a top-rated candidate for governor. Reason: never has the Democratic party of Illinois ever looked worse. Its junior Democratic U. S. senator stands condemned as a bribe-giver wanna be. Its past Democratic governor has been arrested, impeached and tossed out on his ear. Its current Democratic governor glided into the lieutenant governorship using the ill-gotten dough from his predecessor since the two ran as a team: and didn’t squeal in protest until his boss ran into …

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[28 May 2009 | 5 Comments | ]

Unemployment is up.  Food prices are up. Welfare is up. Businesses are closing. Housing is down. And now the federal government is talking about imposing a national sales tax – on top of city, county and state sales taxes.
The federal government has thrown billions of dollars at the banking, insurance and automobile industries.  It has taken over ownership of Citibank, Chrysler, General Motors, and the largest insurance company in America. It’s not only taken ownership, it has flexed its muscles as never before seen in our nation.  Before General Motors …

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[27 May 2009 | One Comment | ]

When John Roberts was nominated to be on the high court, Senator Dick Durbin told CNN that he considered it fair game to probe Roberts about his Catholicism. Durbin released a glowing statement yesterday on Sotomayor that never mentioned her religion. When Roberts was questioned by Senator Arlen Specter and Senator Dianne Feinstein, they both asked him whether he agreed with President John F. Kennedy about separation of church and state. Neither even mentioned Sotomayor’s religion in their respective statements yesterday.
When Roberts was nominated, Dahlia Lithwick, legal analyst for Slate, …