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[27 Sep 2013 | One Comment | ]

Over 50 years ago, David Halberstam authored a book about the Kennedy Administration entitled “The Best and the Brightest.” Nobody would ever utilize that phrase to describe Illinois’ government, governor, or state legislature. “Dumb and Dumbest” would be more apropos.
In fact, the “Land of Lincoln” is more aptly characterized as the “Land of Least Worst” – which describes the array of abysmal choices Illinoisans confront when choosing a governor.
Of the state’s past ten governors, five were indicted, one was impeached, and four went to prison.

The current governor, Pat Quinn (D), …

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[27 Sep 2013 | No Comment | ]

Academics can barely determine the proper amount to tip a barista; yet, they can tell cops how to fight crime and President’s what trigger not  to pull . . . and when.  Academics comprise Blue Ribbon State panels of tweedy totalitarians who empty prisons of felons and ignore the families of victims.

Academics used to be the sad rumpled dopes that they are in real life.  Only Camille Paglia among the literary lions stands up for real people.  Professor Paglia called the most fatuous fraud in literary studies, Stanley Fish -America’s Totalitarian Tinkerbell.  Spot on, Doc.

I was lucky enough to be taught by teachers and only ran into an academic well past the time of being awed by the man’s condescension and poor personal hygiene.  I had about tens years of teaching under my pelt, before returning to post-graduate studies.  This one poser taught some PC lit course on gender and colonialism.  He was a faculty pain-in-the-ass and popular with the kids – easy A.

How sad that some people only read what academics find – vital, searing, game-changing and really stupid.
I imagine that the book reviews never get past the covers.

“Throughout, Dimock contends that American
literature is answerable not to the nation-state, but
to the human species as a whole, and that it looks
dramatically different when removed from a strictly
national or English-language context.”
I applaud this goal, yet all of the texts drawn
from global contexts “across deep time” are presented in English translations.
Henry James’s novels and
The Epic of Gilgamesh, to give one comic example,
get read together. I know—in this case, who cares?
But this is true throughout. Knowing a text in its
original language and cultural contexts is crucial.
If such knowledge is removed, due to the scholar’s
inadequacies or the assumed reader’s, the result is
readings lacking resonance, depth, weight. Reading
then is like looking at a child’s shaken snow globe,
with the texts-snowflakes gradually settling down to
one common level. All are globally equal now but
equally bland and banal.”  Daniel T. O’Hara
Temple University

“Cheesy, laughable, and
iterative: the writer who brought you a fudge recipe
in Chitty-Chitty Bang-Bang (1964) introduces the
bondsman of global capital.” -Eyal Amiran University of California, Irvine

“How cleverly condescending can one get? A tear falling in a field of snow!” -Marjorie Perloff
Stanford University

“The character of Clyde had been pulled out of Dreiser’s own murky
inner life. Dreiser has never been accused of being
a stylist, so a difference in language is not the question; it is more a matter of Dreiser letting the public
record interfere with his re-imagining .”William A. O’Rourke
University of Notre Dame

“This formulaic knock-off
of fantastic conspiracy theories is a trite study for a
film script—and no wonder the movie was also bad.
I love the chapters that are only a couple of lines
long.” Bonnie Wheeler
Southern Methodist University

In a world that depends up Public Televison to determine what restaurant serves really important cuisine, it is always nice to go out and eat some good chow in the Heart of Italy.

Do so likewise with what you read.

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[27 Sep 2013 | No Comment | ]

The Chicago Sun-Times reports:

Chicago homeowners and businesses would face annual property tax increases to solve the city’s pension crisis — but a balloon payment to shore up police and fire pensions would be put off until 2022 — under legislation backed by Mayor Rahm Emanuel that is drawing fire from all sides.

Fraternal Order of Police President Mike Shields flatly declared that the bill introduced at the close of the spring legislation session by Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) stands no chance of passing because police and fire unions will work to defeat it.

In 2015, the city is required by state law to make a $600 million contribution to stabilize police and fire pension funds that now have assets to cover just 30.5 and 25 percent of their respective liabilities.

The mayor’s City Council floor leader has repeatedly suggested that the General Assembly “relieve us of these artificial dates they’ve put on us and allow us to solve the pension problem over time.” A seven-year “ramp up” was built into a tentative contract with police sergeants but overwhelmingly rejected by the rank-and-file after Shields worked to defeat it.

The great moments of one party rule.

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[26 Sep 2013 | No Comment | ]

The Washington Examiner

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[26 Sep 2013 | One Comment | ]

Senator Ted Cruz debates Senator Dick Durbin on the Senate floor.

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[26 Sep 2013 | One Comment | ]

Larry Summers took his name out of the hat and won’t be considered for the top spot at the Federal Reserve. And while nothing is a slam dunk, it looks very much like current Vice Chair Janet Yellen is going to get the call from President Obama to step up and replace Bernanke.

The political nature of this entire process – Summers’ withdrawal under pressure from Democratic Senators and the pivot to Yellen – is an awful sign. Monetary policy should be independent of politics. It hasn’t always been. And when …

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[26 Sep 2013 | Comments Off | ]

Chinatown Principal Wins Magazine's Beauty Contest

“More” magazine named St. Therese’s Phyllis Cavallone in a nationwide beauty search.