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[18 Jan 2018 | 2 Comments | ]

Several times during 2017 Donald Trump was asked if he would agree to an interview with Special Counsel Robert Mueller for the investigation into Russian meddling–and each time he answered affirmatively. Yes, “100 percent” said he.
     Last week, arguably the worst of his presidency, he flipped, giving  the weirdest excuse: “There was no collusion. Nobody’s found any collusion,” so an interview would be “unlikely.”

    Imagine some criminal suspect exonerating himself by pronouncing “I’m innocent. I’m innocent–therefore I don’t have to be questioned by the authorities.”
    Be reminded: none of the three congressional committees investigating …

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[11 Jan 2018 | No Comment | ]

Because of his previous occupation as host of a “reality show” and his alleged admonition to staff that every day should be seen as a new episode that he wins, he is sometimes talked of as the reality-show president. This might apply  if you recall some of those on-camera, chair-throwing battles on shows hosted by such notables as Geraldo Rivera and Morton Downey Jr.
   I,  however, have a different take. I see this presidency as one of my favorite genre films, the caper movie. You know–from John Huston’s great “Asphalt Jungle” to Jules …

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[5 Jan 2018 | No Comment | ]

Among the traditional year-end look-backs, dictionaries and other word watchers have been identifying a “word of the year.” Some choose new, made-up words, other select on the basis of widespread usage. Oxford Dictionaries nominated the unlikely “youthquake.” Dictionaries.com selected “complicit,” quite on target, as was Merriam-Webster’s choice, “feminism”–an oldie but goodie.

  I, being more verbose, have selected seven, primarily political, one of them brand new, five others in much wider use during 2017 than previous years–and one archaic. They are listed here more or less in order of importance to our …

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[28 Dec 2017 | No Comment | ]

CHICAGO–Add to Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s costly problems with his still unreformed police department and a school system now with its fourth CEO in  seven years, the Office of the Corporation Counsel–his law department–has been riddled with a series of unethical and boneheaded actions that make you wonder how some of its lawyers got out of school.  (If, that is, all their misdeeds were unintentional.)
    Recently they had to withdraw a cruel suit against the estate of a mentally disturbed teen killed by a policeman in a questionable shooting that also took the life …

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[20 Dec 2017 | No Comment | ]

If you hold high federal office it seems you can get away with serial sex abuse by continual lying–and if you’re a congressman pay your accuser hush money from a special pool of taxpayer funds. Small wonder DC is such a sex swamp.
   Look at the nation’s top sexual predator–the guy in the Oval Office. Through the years at least 20 women have accused him of various sexual aggressions–among them the kind that led to the resignation of Sen. Al Franken and several congressmen of both parties. These are actions he …

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[14 Dec 2017 | One Comment | ]

Have you figured out why Donald Trump chose just this moment to toss a grenade more dangerous than all of his diversionary tweets by announcing he was recognizing the partly-Palestinian Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and eventually would move the American embassy there from Tel Aviv?
    In a typically Orwellian statement, the master of diversion said he was doing it to advance the peace process–which, if you believe there is still a peace process, would serve to wreck it.

    The announcement ignited the expected protests throughout the Middle East, some of …

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[7 Dec 2017 | No Comment | ]

Hollywood, networks and other businesses acted swiftly to fire sexual abusers. Congress? Uh uh.
Numerous Republicans (except Donald Trump) called for Roy Moore to drop out of the Alabama senate race after 9 women accused him of sexual abuse while teen-agers, one only 14 at the time. Democrats joined the chorus.

Moore’s winning poll numbers dropped down to a tie with Democrat Doug Jones–some showing a good lead for Jones. Moore denied all improprieties, inconsistently recalling the names of two of his accusers, now claiming he knows none.
Two other things happened. Trump …

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[29 Nov 2017 | No Comment | ]

Let’s face it–thousands of progressives were ready to impeach Donald Trump even before he was sworn in. Truth to tell, deep down I sympathized with them–silly as the idea was.
   All through his first year in office you heard the word “impeach” more and more.  It reached a kind of crescendo in recent weeks with a heavy TV blitz by a progressive philanthropist and the introduction of articles of impeachment by six congressmen.

    It is a lot less silly, but the idea is premature, unrealistic, unwise and potentially damaging to the ultimate cause …

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[21 Nov 2017 | 2 Comments | ]

Let’s leave for a moment the world of sex abusers and victims, tax-reform abusers and their victims, and the Liars Poker game at the White House to dispel a myth perpetrated by all the media and believed by numerous righteous citizens.
   I speak of the of the myth of the great unifying single leader of the Democratic Party. Whether posed as a question by columnists and commentators of all persuasions or offered up as a general statement, there is the presumption that somehow there should be one–suggesting that at one time …

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[15 Nov 2017 | No Comment | ]

Alabamans get to vote yes or no to senate candidate and accused pedophile Roy Moore, who joins the endless parade of producers, actors, journalists, professors and others accused and probably guilty of rape, assault or harassment.
Most have no impact on me other than generalized contempt. But I’ve had personal reactions, apart from disdain, to some of these characters. Certain figures prompt an emotional or intellectual question: Should I boycott or make exceptions and forgive?
Take Bill Cosby–whose comedy and mutual love of jazz I enjoyed. I rarely watched his TV show, …