Thursday, April 30, 2009


Once upon a time, no this is not fiction, and it is not about politics...just a totally true story. Back some 40 years ago, I was working for a Television Advertising Sales firm in Chicago. One of our biggest clients held an annual sales meeting and this particular gathering was held at a nice resort between Cadillac and Traverse City, Michigan.

After two days of intense sales meetings where each of the client’s television stations made presentations, and our company which represented those stations’ interests in the major cities of the country made our pitches. The actual purpose of the gathering was to review performance of the past year and then forecast sales for the coming year. At the conclusion there was a big dinner party where sales awards were presented for the best and even the worst achievements, all in good humor. Following the dinner everyone adjourned for more cocktails and cards in a huge private room.

The card game was an event that I had learned to avoid, because if you happened to beat the client’s big boss you would hear about it for the entire next year. I would designate myself as the unofficial drink server. Big Bill who was my boss and owner or our company played “client cards” for a while, but adjourned to the bar for one of his famous WHITEYS, which consisted of vodka on the rocks with a splash of water and several dashes of Tabasco sauce. Actually, the drink was anything but a WHITEY, because it was pink.

After several WHITEYS, Big Bill was leaning his chair back against the wall while the card game was going full blast. Suddenly, Big Bill crashed to the floor, and not a soul looked up from the intense card game. Our Manager from St. Louis, Fred, rushed to Big Bill’s assistance and tried to get him upright. Instead of getting a friendly word of appreciation Bill loudly said, “Get your hands off me or you’re fired.” Fred jumped back shocked and looked at me, and I rendered my advice to back off and let me intercede.

I tried to get Big Bill upright, but required Fred’s added assistance, which he did reluctantly because he feared Bill’s further wrath. As we eased Big Bill toward the door to go to his room, he shook us off grabbing the door knobs. Big Bill then boomed that he was going to his room as soon as he could get the /*.+#!-@*# door open as he frantically and in a stupor turned the knobs on both sides of the door.

Fred and I got Big Bill to his room and he was in dreamland almost immediately. We returned to the hospitality room and there was nary a mention of the recent happenings as the card game continued with great passion. With everyone returning to their respective homes the next day, the evening came to a close at a respectable hour.

The next morning everyone was busy packing and getting to the resort’s dining room for breakfast. Shortly after I arrived at the table, Big Bill slipped into the chair next to me expressing his desire for a big glass of water and a huge breakfast. The incident of the previous evening was never mentioned and happily Fred kept his job. I will never know, but I doubt that Big Bill even remembered the incident of the previous evening.

When the waitress delivered Big Bill a half of grapefruit he gave it several shots of the Tabasco bottle and then dove into a huge omelet with toast. As he ate he leaned over to me and in a very low voice asked “Do you think I called Edith last night?” (Edith was his wife and they lived in a lavish apartment in Evanston. I responded with, “I don’t know.”

Checking out of the resort we all made our way to the Traverse City airport and boarded our flights homeward. Big Bill and I were then based in Chicago and as we flew over Lake Michigan he asked me several times “Do you really think I called Edith last night?” Each time I told him, Bill I have no idea, because I was not with you. Once we landed at O’Hare Airport, Big Bill (who was not only my boss, but the owner of the company) announced that he was heading home to Evanston, because his “colitis was kicking up.” I thought nothing of it, because that was one of the privileges of ownership and being the boss.

It took me about an hour to get to my office at Prudential Plaza in downtown Chicago. I do not think I was in my Office more that a few minutes when my private line rang. It was Bill and in a hushed tone he asked if everything was OK at the office, and then whispered “I called Edith” immediately hanging up. I knew he was in the doghouse at home and I couldn’t help but roar with laughter. I then had to explain my reaction to my inquiring secretary.

Knowing Big Bill, I was certain that he would shortly be enroute to the local liquor store to secure a peace offering of a bottle of Pinch scotch for the lovely Edith.

To say that Big Bill was a complex individual is an understatement. He was a unique guy, a great boss, and a fun individual to be around. In hindsight he was not a very good businessman, but he left that to his New York President and me as Executive Vice-President in Chicago.

Unfortunately Fred died in St. Louis when he was in this early 70’s of Alzheimer’s. Big Bill’s first wife died in California, his lovely friend and companion of many years, Lee, died of cancer in New York, Bill later relocated from New York to the Chicago area and married Lee’s sister, the aforementioned Edith, and they retired to Scottsdale, AZ where many years later they both died of Alzheimer’s just a few years apart.

Many years after his retirement and sale of the company, my associate from New York and I visited Big Bill in a lovely care facility the week before he died. When I saw him that last time he was making eyes at a lovely young nurse’s aide who was playing a guitar and singing to him. He never changed even in his last days on earth. I remember going into the hallway and crying with Edith, because I knew that would be the last time I would see Big Bill alive.

The incident recounted above occurred well before there were computers and business included plenty of drinking and entertaining in those days. To say that Big Bill was socially active was an understatement, because I frequently wonder why he had not been shot by a jealous husband or his dear lady friend Lee. By the time he married Edith, he had slowed down and only had an active eye for the ladies.

Life with Big Bill and his company was a wondrous twenty-nine year ride, and one I would not trade for a million dollars. They just don’t make them like Big Bill anymore.



Everyday the newspapers, television news reports, and our websites alert us to increasing encroachment of our government into the affairs of our citizenry. During the first 100 days of the Obama Administration I believe it is on a crash course to grab as much control as possible, before the American public wakes up to the fact that they have lost substantial portions of their cherished liberty.

In the April 20th issue of the Chicago Sun Times there was a very interesting article outlining the huge increase in firearm sales since the election of President Barack Obama. Knowing that Obama has long been an advocate of gun control, many Americans are flooding to gun dealers and purchasing firearms at an alarming rate. Here is an issue where I am supportive of our President, but only to a point.

I am a firm believer in the 2nd Amendment to our Constitution that guarantees our rights to own a firearm. I am totally opposed to the ability to own or purchase an AK47 or ammunition clips that hold 10 or more cartridges. The military and local law enforcement should have the lawful right to possess AK47’s, but not the average citizen. Gangs and immature youth are killing people indiscriminately and the drug lords are slaughtering people across this nation. We must enforce the existing laws fairly and firmly. People who violate the law should be penalized to the fullest extent of the appropriate laws.

Secretary Janet Napolitano has recently stated that the Administration will not move against reinstating the restrictions on assault weapons, because there are not the necessary votes in Congress. The real issue is the fact it does not want to raise any resistance from the gun lobby to any policies that will threaten other Obama legislative goals. Real leadership faces problems head-on and does not trade off what is right or necessary to accomplish something else. What can possibly justify sacrificing the lives of our people, and the destructive influence drugs have on our fellow Americans? Free access to assault weapons in reality restricts our liberty.

Also, the April 20th issue of the New York Times alerted to the announcement by Rahm Emanuel that the Obama Administration may elect to take common stock from American Banks that have received massive government loans. Essentially this action would result in our government nationalizing our banking system. Frankly this proposal scares the hell out of me, because we will have the likes of Senator Christopher Dodd D-CT and Congressman Barney Frank D-MA controlling our banking systems. With their track record of poor over-sight for the past several years this is very disturbing. I for one do not feel our President should have the power to select or fire bank executives, especially when he has no experience in the banking industry. The proposed action is purely Socialism #101.

Despite President Obama’s claims last evening that he did not want to be in the automobile business, the banking business, or the mortgage business, our government will retain about 50% of the stock in Chrysler and some 40% will go to the United Auto Workers. This is pure political “pay for play,” and the American stockholders again are left holding the bag.

Your Commander is delighted to see our President has returned to Washington from his recent journey to the Summit of the Americas, where he was the victim of an ambush publicity stunt from the increasingly dangerous President Hugo Chavez. I believe it is time for our President to keep Air Force One in the hangar and address our economic issues, and stop spreading our ever dwindling supply of money to every country around the world. The recent announcement by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to award $50 million to Haiti is an example of good money after bad in which we will get nothing in return.

When will we ever learn our lessons? The people of United States have been referred to as Ugly Americans around the world, and what has all of our foreign aid money gained us in world opinion. We cannot buy our way out of how others judge us, nor can we buy ourselves out of the economic crisis.

In the first 100 days of the Obama Administration I have not seen TRANSPARENCY or CHANGE, just the same old shell game of attainment of political power. Remember the old Wendy’s commercial “WHERE IS THE BEEF?” What I want to know is ”WHERE IS THE LEADERSHIP AND HONESTY?” One must wonder with so much adversity just how long can our new President retain strong favorability poll numbers.


Wednesday, April 29, 2009


There is a very interesting article in the April 29th issue of the New York Times about the United State’s plan to eliminate the Taliban’s revenue source in Afghanistan. For years we have known that the Taliban has been securing huge sums of money from the growth of poppies, and that crop is the principal source of opium across the world. As usual we continue to know the problem exists, but little or nothing is done to eliminate the revenue stream. American fighting men continue to be killed and now we are sending 20,000 additional Marines and Army personnel into the area.

This article by Dexter Filkins reports that we plan to spend $250 million dollars to improve roads, irrigation and develop water sources so Afghani farmers can establish true agricultural crops, i.e., wheat, which were successfully farmed back in the 1970’s. Again America continues to throw money at problems, and believes that this initiative will solve the issue. The Afghanistan problem is complicated and requires multiple actions to solve. As I have said before, money alone and increased troop strength will not solve the long historical conflicts confronting this part of the world.

The root of the problem is the poppy crop. We can’t just go into Afghanistan and eliminate the entire crop. Yes, it would immediately destroy the Taliban’s revenue stream. However, that would destroy a fragile, at best, economic situation. We must find a way to get the Afghan agricultural community to embrace growing crops that will feed their nation, not assist in the destruction of it. When poppy farming is eliminated, we will eliminate the funds that the Taliban uses to kill our soldiers and its own people.

Although infrastructure improvements are required, let’s begin where the Taliban influence and poppy fields are as limited as possible and start with infrastructure improvements there. We could even use part of the $250 million to compensate farmers there for the establishment of proper crops. Corruption is rampant and the Taliban has infiltrated the entire growing area, and even if we were paying off Taliban farmers, we could have an strong impact on the flow of drugs out of the country once the farming of appropriate agriculture crops took root (pardon the pun) and the farmers made a very viable living.

Addressing the drug crisis world-wide is a monumental task. We are talking about unbelievable sums of money that buys international corruption, influence, and in some cases political office. Even here in the good old USA we cannot seem to get control of drug trafficking.

The U.S. agricultural model is renowned. I am sure that once “good” farming begins to enjoy success, the total elimination of the poppy fields with appropriate plant killing agents can be accomplished.

The President of Afghanistan, Hamid Karzia, would not exist for ten minutes if not for America’s dollars, American military support, and our political backing. Karzia should not be permitted to stop our actions against the poppy fields.

America cannot expect to receive a helping hand from most foreign governments, and especially the appallingly unsupportive United Nations. The UN survives on the dollars received yearly from the gullible United States, and many of the UN Ambassadors have questionable ties to their appointments by their countries. Then there is also the matter of the UN’s long established record of thumbing its nose at our humanitarian efforts. One wonders why our country continues to feed that gluttonous pig.

Do we really want to solve the drug problem? Should we worry if we offend some poor country that survives on our foreign aid? Would we be taking needed monies away from the entitlement/welfare crowd? Do you suspect that there is corruption in high places?

The United States government has been throwing millions, now billions of dollars into Afghanistan dating back to the early 1980s and Congressman Charlie Wilson’s “War” against the Soviets in Afghanistan and it has not solved this tragic source of world wide terror. Yes, the issue is complex, but how can our leadership over the years be so oblivious?


Monday, April 27, 2009


For years your Commander has had a burr under his saddle relative to the inefficiency and ineffectiveness of our educational system. We keep pouring money into the problem, but see little or no improvement in the end product.

I have rarely praised the New York Times, because they are so very liberal in their opinions, but here is one exception. Today I was scanning the NYT website and came across a wonderful Op-Ed piece by Mark C. Taylor who is Chairman of the Religion Department at Columbia University. Let me suggest that you read the full article by going to your computer and entering:

Your Commander has long been a critic of tenure, lack of budget integrity, and specialization in the curriculum. Let me give you an example on one of these issues that I experienced first-hand.

Back in the early 1990’s I was Vice-President of Corporate Sales for Beam Communications and attended the National Association of Radio and Television News Directors annual meeting at Disney World in Orlando. During one of the sessions a Professor of Journalism from the renowned University of Missouri School of Journalism asked noted ABC Nightline Anchor, Ted Koppel, “We teach hundreds of wonderful bright students to be Journalists and after graduation they cannot get jobs with your organization. Why?”

Let me tell you that Koppel’s response hit the Professor right in the gut when he said, “Professor, please take my comments to be meant in a constructive manner, but you send us journalism specialists who cannot write or even spell. They know how to operate a camera or video board, but they cannot write, and we do not have time in the competitive real world to become their elementary skill development teacher.” The Professor quietly vanished into the evening shadows, not to be seen again.

Enjoy the article, and I hope Taylor’s comments start a dialog that will attain real educational improvements.



When the campaign for the 2008 Presidential election started over two years ago the mud started flying and it has not stopped even six months after the results were posted. President George W. Bush will be dissected every which way from Sunday by professional historians who will be significantly more accurate than today’s main-street journalists or anything I may write.

Attached is a link to an important piece of video that liberal media did not want seen here in the States on You Tube, so it was withdrawn. The same video can be seen by routing through Canada, and I believe it is important for every voting citizen to get the true facts, which set the record straight.

Once you have viewed this important piece of video YOU HAVE THE REST OF THE STORY. Do you wonder why you do not see this report being aired on NBC, CBS, ABC, CNBC, MSNBC, CNN, PBS or CSPAN?


Sunday, April 26, 2009


Currently we are experiencing a defining period in the history and future of our great democratic experiment…the United States of America. Recent attendance at the Tea Parties across our nation indicates there is a growing unrest across the country, and there are several different issues being addressed simultaneously. Whether or not these protests have legs is something that only history will prove. I believe the protests will grow, especially if we do not see an upturn in our economy in the near future. Thus, the coming Congressional elections in 2010 will be both interesting and pivotal to the general election in 2012 and our future quality of life.

Obviously, the electorate is concerned about the economy and the destruction of individual retirement portfolios. Taxation is a hot button issue, because even a student of Economics #101 knows that we cannot have budget deficits in the trillions and not be facing dramatic increases in our future tax obligations. The quickly passed Stimulus Bill and the TARP appropriations have been released and there is already evidence of excessive misuse with little or no accountability.
Dollars are being thrown at projects that will obligate the taxpayers to re-fund those projects once the Stimulus Bill revenue is spent, i.e., adding schools around the country, then who will pay the needed teacher salaries. Few “SHOVEL READY” projects have commenced to date, and there are indications that several will not start for at least one or two more years.

To say our new president has a full plate is an understatement. Your Commander is of the opinion that Obama is trying to accomplish far too much within his first 100 days. Having collected record campaign contributions, our president has many obligations to address, but I suggest that his Oath of Office is the first debt he must meet. Thus far, I believe our president has placed his commitment to the unions and special interests that funded his campaign along with the pressures coming from the liberal left of his party before his oath of office. With over three more years remaining in his Presidential term why is he so concerned about pandering to his political base?

Historical works such as David McCullough’s “1776” or “Presidential Courage” by Richard Beschloss have shown that political rancor has always been strong, but I do not believe it has ever been as vicious with a “kill the opposition” or “personal destruction” approach as it is today. I believe this is a very dangerous development and a condition that could ultimately destroy our cherished democracy. Our Founding Fathers must be turning over in their graves.

Instead of rushing to judgments that attempt to bring quick solutions, would it not be more prudent to exert true, reasoned leadership that gets to the heart of the problems. I would like to see a series of truly bi-partisan committees be formed to develop a list of priorities to resolve our most pressing issues of the day. That list may include energy independence, fair and equitable taxation, national debt, welfare abuse, drugs, gangs, illegal immigration, ethics in governance, homeland security, national defense, education, foreign aid, and future anticipated needs. The committees would consist of experienced business professionals, distinguished academics, retired military, and politicians no longer serving who could leave their political cloaks at the door. No doubt your list may be different, but let’s get started and stop this vicious partisan bickering that in the long run accomplishes nothing but increased financial burdens. Currently we are destroying our society from within, and it has to stop.

I believe the American people are not fools, but have been taken advantage of by clever political opportunists. Complacency and greed has gotten us into our current economic chaos, but we need an awakening of honest leadership to get us back on the proper patriotic course that does not bow to special interests. Daily press briefings and suddenly called Sunday press conferences are shooting from the hip attempts to calm the electorate, but all too frequently require re-spinning the administration’s position, because the initial comment is ill-advised.

I believe the Tea Party movement can have long lasting, effective legs, but it is up to each individual’s response or reaction. I believe the name Tea Party is far too limiting, and it should be changed to THE AMERICAN PARTY, which can encompass numerous issues, and have greater solidarity. We must find common ground for both the left and right, the Republicans, the Democrats, the Independents, the Conservatives, and the Liberals or we will cease to exist. If you believe in the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, and our Constitution as I do, then join me in participating in THE AMERICAN PARTY movement. The alternatives are ultimately losing democracy, freedom, liberty, and living under a dictatorship, monarchy, socialism, or communist governance.

As far as your Commander is concerned Patrick Henry was correct, “Give me liberty or give me death.”



This commentary is touching on a highly emotional subject so I want you to know that I have absolutely nothing against pets, and in fact have great affection for animals of all kinds. BUT

Since our new President Barack Obama first announced during his campaign that he would relent and permit his family to have a dog, our main street media has been falling all over themselves pandering to all pet admirers or lovers in an ill-conceived effort to attract new viewers or readers by constantly speculating on the potential breed, when it would arrive, etc. This is another clear example of the current state of journalism in America, because on a scale of 1 to 10 the new presidential dog is really about a 0 in importance to the future of America.

My local paper has been falling all over itself carrying stories about the Portuguese Water Dog at the expense of covering and addressing issues that will directly impact our future best interests. Sure during these times of economic stress, emotional stories about dogs and cats are comforting, but let’s get real folks.

The NBC Nightly News led with the news of the presidential dog’s selection, and has carried numerous stories about the dog’s antics since its arrival. Our cable channels are loaded with Bo’s daily schedule, and pictures of our President frolicking with the dog on the lawn of the White House.

I view all this excessive dog coverage to represent a total lack of priorities, and the liberal left-leaning press’ effort to humanize our new president. Apparently, the media feels compelled to redirect our attention from the pressing issues of the day that may bring even the slightest hint of negative press to their “chosen one”. Part of the problem is caused by the staff cut-backs made necessary by the economic downturn and the media’s efforts to fill pages or minutes in their newscasts. No wonder both subscriptions and viewing is plummeting across the fruited plains.

If the whole purpose of covering the dog is to bring comfort to people in these days of stress, I’ll accept that. However, just what are our main concerns?

Excuse me now while I take my neighbor’s dog and cat for a walk.


Saturday, April 25, 2009


About three weeks ago I wrote a commentary titled “WHAT IS THE RUSH?” and those words of caution are becoming more and more important in our ever perilous and competitive world.

In this frantic political environment our leadership should show far more caution in its rush to score brownie points. The Obama Administration finds it needs to give its words greater initial consideration because it later sees a need to re-spin statements which have caused a political uproar. An example is President Obama’s initial remarks about not prosecuting people who approved or administered torture, and then backtracking to suggest that the Attorney General may elect to hold individuals now outside of government to task.

With that second remark our President neglected to recognize the fact that the torture policy was approved not only with attorneys, but with both the Senate and House Committee members at the time were briefed and raised no objection to the treatment of high level prisoners, which suggests we now have a double standard in conducting political prosecution. It’s OK now, but the next administration may overturn our legal interpretation and enforcement. Now just a couple of days ago he has realized the danger and gone back to his original position.

Our new Secretary of Homeland Security has inflamed our cherished Veteran community with her recent statement that returning Veterans are susceptible to radical actions. Secretary Napolitano is now in full backtrack mode trying to explain her words that I suspect she never read before she spoke them. In fact she said something like if I could go back, I would have stricken that part of my statement.

Some of the words flowing out of Washington scare the hell out of me, and one is only left to assume they are uttered by total idiots, liberals from the farthest left, or just lazy government officials who have not done their homework. Should you or I commit a similar act at our job, we would probably be terminated or severely reprimanded. The average person never gets the opportunity to spin their misstatements.

A recent blog referred to cautionary words taught us by our parents, teachers and worthy peers. Just this week another politician dropped a good one when he said; “You can’t improve any situation by staying away from it”. My first reaction was that Yogi Berra was at it again, but no it was the President of South Africa Kgalema Mothlanthe.

At first blush this individual’s words really scared me, since they were coming from a person who wants to continue leading his country. Reading further I learned that he was trying to urge people to the polls to vote, but you sure would not understand that by his statement.

Words are magnificent instruments of communication, but they must be used with great caution and compassion. We all would be far better off were we to stop and think about what we are really writing or saying. Your Commander should embrace his own recommendation in his future writings, too.


Thursday, April 23, 2009


My regular readers will be totally shocked to learn that your Commander is going to compliment one specific department of our Federal Government. Yes, is that not surprising to hear me report something favorable relative to our Washington leadership?

Having just completed my annual physical at our local Veteran’s Administration office, I am delighted to enthusiastically endorse the job being performed by our VA when it comes to medical treatment. No doubt all veterans may not feel this way, but for the past several years I have noted a significant improvement in services and the quality of treatment.

Within the VA there is a program that permits eligible veterans to secure a formulary list of prescription drugs at a very inexpensive cost. This represents a huge financial savings in my particular case, and I am certain that many other VA patients feel the same way.

I first noticed an improvement in services at the VA starting back during the early months of the George W. Bush administration, and it continues to improve under Barack Obama’s term, too.

I have found the staff to be very friendly, supportive, and completely professional, unlike my experiences with several other departments of our federal government such as the Social Security Administration, the Internal Revenue, and especially the Congressional representatives from both Houses. To say that the rest of the federal government is in deleterious condition is a huge understatement.

Clearly the VA staff cares for veterans and they show it demonstratively. Today as I was leaving my Doctor told me something I have not heard since I was Honorably Discharged in August of 1954. When we shook hands the Doctor said: “Thanks for your valued service to our country”. WOW!

When I volunteered for service in the Regular Air Force back in January 1951 I did so because I felt it was my duty, and my honor and that I could make a contribution to the country’s effort in fighting the Korean War. I never expected anything in return and certainly never anticipated benefits for education and health care from the Federal Government. Believe me I would gladly serve back then or again today without any benefits being bestowed. The thanks I received today make all those lonesome scary days in Korea long ago a greatly appreciated justification for my service.


Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Considering all the significant issues confronting our government or personal lives, it is no wonder that some vital subjects get lost in the shuffle. Recently we re-subscribed to TIME MAGAZINE, and while I frequently take exception to their political vent, TIME frequently contains interesting and informative articles.

Your Commander wants to draw your attention to Time’s April 27, 2009 issue and two very important articles on the long neglected subject of EDUCATION. Walter Isaacson’s report titled “How to Raise the Standard in America’s Schools” is an excellent assessment of Education in America today. Additionally, you will find an informative Q & A interview titled “The Apostle of Reform” with our new Education Secretary Arne Duncan to be refreshing, thoughtful, and insightful.

If you’re not a subscriber you can see both articles simply by going to on your computer, and enter the article titles in the Search File.

As a staunch Conservative Constitutionalist I want to see limited involvement by our Federal Government in the field of Education, because it is brilliantly placed in the province of State governance by our Constitution. I do, however, feel that both Duncan and Isaacson’s call for realistic, achievable, improved standards of accountability are something that only our Federal Government can properly establish. Historically we have learned that each state’s provincial influences repeatedly fail to meet the necessary objective and competitive global educational requirements.

Duncan’s call for longer school days, extending the school year, teacher accountability, parental involvement, review of tenure, vouchers, and charter schools all are drawn from his successful leadership of the Chicago Public School system. Based upon Duncan’s success in handling the militant Chicago Teachers Union he may be just the right person to bring dramatic improvements across the country.

Nationwide our inner-city schools are generally appalling when it comes to discipline, achievement, and drop-out rates. Unless we promptly find solutions to America’s educational needs we will continue to develop generations of citizens who will be nothing but an unmanageable burden to the public welfare rolls. Throwing money at education garners political votes, but has not shown to improve academic results over the last few decades.

I strongly urge you to read both of these defining articles. It is very easy for all of us to ignore the subject of education, but it is one of the most important subjects impacting the future viability of our quality of life, survivability, and greatness.


Monday, April 20, 2009


During this period of economic uncertainty there is much misinformation flowing through our newspapers and over our airwaves. Tragically our political leadership is running for cover and diverting the source of responsibility away from themselves to Chief Executive Officers in a pure game of transference.

In Mark Levin’s important new book LIBERTY AND TYRANNY he correctly outlines the abhorrent practice of bringing innocent business leaders before kangaroo Congressional hearings to shift the responsibility from their dysfunctional government oversight committees. Clearly all business leadership is not guilty of creating our current economic problems, but our political elite want us to forget that they caused many of today’s problems with our banks, automobile industry, oil companies, and investment houses.

It is the Commander’s opinion based upon his significant experience that some Chief Executive Officer’s are responsible for inappropriate actions, and some are grossly overpaid, but that does not include all CEO’s. By seeking the truthful source of responsibility we must look first at government oversight responsibility, then at government established laws forced upon corporations, thirdly at CEO’s responsibilities, and most importantly we should consider the over-riding fiduciary responsibility that exists in the duties of the Boards of Directors of all companies.

I can speak about this subject because I have been privileged to serve on numerous Boards of Directors or Boards of Trustees over the years. During those years I have served on some great board and some boards that were dominated by overly dictatorial CEOs or individuals who owned such a dominant portion of the company stock that the board was just window dressing.

Unfortunately corporate Boards are frequently compromised by inflated director fees and stock perks that sway judgment. I have observed first-hand as a stockholder where a Board agreed to excessive salary payments to the CEO and COO and granted loans to the officers to purchase company stock that were later forgiven, even when the company’s financial position was poor. Time and time again the stockholder’s interests are not served by the actions of compromised Board members.

Perfect examples are the historical facts being now leaking out relative to fees paid to Board members at AIG, Freddie Mac, and Fannie Mae while their financial positions were failing. Many of those companies’ problems were forced upon them by Congressional pressures, laws, and even Board appointments were influenced by the lawmakers themselves, such as President Clinton’s appointment of Rahm Emanuel to the Freddie Mac Board where he was compensated over $320,000 for 14 months of work.

Lastly, I had a wonderful experience serving on the Board of a local bank in Duluth, MN that was owned by a wealthy businessman. The federal bank regulators called upon the owner to have a more representative board without a majority of his family members, so I and several others were asked to join the newly organized Board. My tenure was a great personal experience, and I enjoyed my participation which included membership on the Loan Committee.

The bank was constantly pressured by bank regulators to increase its minority lending, despite the fact that the community had an extremely limited minority population. As a matter of fact, Duluth had only one African American family at that time which was led by a police officer. Additionally, the only other minority population resided on a nearby Indian Reservation. Neither that black family, nor any Indians ever applied to that particular bank for loans, but the regulator said we must increase our minority loans or we would be found in violation of federal rules.

Our bank ran ads encouraging people to apply for loans in the regional newspapers and on the local television/radio stations, but the regulators were not satisfied. The federal government was totally blind to the fact that there were virtually no minority individuals that could be considered realistically eligible to meet prudent loan requirements. Essentially, the government wanted the bank to loan money to individuals that we both knew would require the bank to lose money, because the individuals could not pay the money back. At the time I did not recognize the fact that our government was practicing forced income redistribution and entitlement way back in the 1980’s.

I am proud to report that that one small bank held firm to good business practices, and the regulators never came back. The facts are that government policy was exactly what led to the financial chaos we face today. Members of Boards of Directors should be held accountable for their failure to perform their fiduciary responsibilities. Some CEO’s should have been fired by their Boards, and many stockholders should have voted some members of those Boards out of their fat-cat, overpaid positions.

I know I said it before, but the old game of TRANSFERENCE is still running full steam ahead. When are we going to have real accountability and responsibility in our government? When is our Justice Department going to perform honest thorough investigations? And isn’t it time for the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to fulfill its obligations? I pray it is not too late for the citizenry to get a full accounting, and not a political cover up.


Sunday, April 19, 2009


We have all watched Presidential Press Conferences and the daily Press Briefings by Presidential Press Secretary Robert Gibbs. Personally I have stopped watching both, because they are obviously staged and are produced with content that is little more than political spin or Washington Speak.

Surely you must wonder why no politician answers the questions directed to them by the Washington Press Corp. I suspect that you too find it embarrassing when veteran Washington Reporter Helen Thomas asks any question, which frequently no one quite understands. Have you noticed that the same favored main-stream Reporters are repeatedly asked to address their soft-ball questions?

I would love to have a chance to present a question or two and I suspect that you would want to do the same. When the President or Robert Gibbs does not answer your question would it not be appropriate to firmly, but politely inquire why they evaded your question. How about a simple yes or no?

Here is a sample of the questions I would like to ask.

Mr. President, it is reported that you have not presented proof of your origin of birth, which is required to be elected the President of the United States. Why?

Mr. President, it is reported that your Harvard University papers have been sealed and those of the First Lady at both Harvard and Princeton. Why?

Mr. President, it is reported that your wife was employed at the University of Chicago Hospital with an income that totaled $273,000 prior to your election. In the interest of transparency, don’t you not think the American people deserve to know what she did for the Hospital and just how many hours per week she worked at that position?

Mr. President, what did you do as a Community Organizer and who paid you?

Mr. Gibbs, in view of the fact that individuals and organizations are due a speedy trial why has no action been taken by the Justice Department relative to allegations and indictments against the community action group ACORN or Mr. Tony Resko?

Mr. President, you campaigned across America calling for the elimination and curtailment of earmarks, but you have signed legislation containing millions of dollars in Pork. Why did you not veto the legislation containing earmarks?

Mr. President during your first 100 days in office you have increased the National Debt more than the cumulative actions of all previous Presidents. How can an American parent explain to their children how that debt can be repaid without massive tax increases or a reduction in our standard of living?

Mr. President, when you were a member of the State of Illinois Senate why did you merely vote “present” so frequently rather than “for” or “against” bills before you?

Well I could go on and on with equally vital questions, and I suspect I would get the same evasive responses that we have all witnessed. What are the questions that you seek answers to? I’ll bet your list is equally long and disturbing.

Surely any Reporter that would have the gall to ask any of my questions would be either immediately fired or transferred to Outer Mongolia never to be heard from again. Let none of us hold our breath expecting the Q and A experience to improve in the foreseeable future. Maybe after the next election, but that would take the action of all those radical right-wing conservatives who recently appeared at those hysterical frightful Tea Parties across the nation.


Thursday, April 16, 2009


There was a small article in my local newspaper the other day that caught my eyes. It covered a recent speech made by Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg at Ohio State University.

Justice Ginsburg stated that as the only women on the Court she missed her retired colleague Sandra Day O’Connor, and felt that there should be more women on the Court. Ginsburg stated that women bring a life experience to the court that men cannot. Before you jump to a false conclusion, I do not object to additional qualified women on the Court.

What I fervently object to is another statement Ginsburg made, “The Supreme Court of Canada has four women, including the Chief Justice, and the United States could benefit by looking at the legal systems of other countries.”

It is well articulated in Mark Levin’s excellent book “Men in Black” that several recent decisions of the Supreme Court have looked to foreign Court’s to assist them in reaching judgments. Your Commander suggests that the United States Supreme Court came into existence as a result of our Founding Father’s desire to establish separation from foreign influences. Further, they established the Supreme Court to make final rulings in interpreting the U.S. Constitution, not the actions of foreign government Courts. Numerous recent Supreme Court rulings have been products of opinions that are not supported by the very Constitution that the Justices have sworn to abide. Social engineering and patrician political influences are in essence drifting the Supreme Court away from its clearly articulated purpose.

The residents of Colonial America fought to free themselves of foreign taxes, intervention, and created some of the most highly respected documents of modern civilization with our Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, and Constitution. Some recent Supreme Court decisions are in direct opposition to the thoughtfully crafted Constitution’s premise and guidance.


Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Occasionally you come upon a book that justifies awarding it the status of Must Read. I can certainly validate that rating on LIBERTY and TYRANNY having just completed reading the 205 page conservative manifesto.

Now do not let that statement scare you away from reading the book, because Mark R. Levin is just as hard on the Republicans as he is on the Democrats. Believe me there is plenty of blame to go around in addressing Mark’s concerns of the current condition of American political discourse and future. It would be inappropriate for me to disclose further contents of the book, but I want you to know that I have been so impressed with the author’s findings that I have just purchased two more copies of L&T for my children.

While the book has a slow start, it does require concentration because it delves into the inner workings of our Constitution and our Founding Father’s intentions and goals. Levin’s research is impeccable, and I was particularly impressed with his chapter conclusions on Education, Free Market, Welfare, Immigration, and the Environment.

One last suggestion is that you buy the book through Amazon to save a little money, because the list price is $25.00, or stop by your local library. I believe that Liberals and Conservatives alike will appreciate this book. Both sides of the political discussion will be glad time was spent reading this book.


Saturday, April 11, 2009


Every morning when I rise, I peek out the side of the window shade to determine what the weather portends for the day. What is really important is to see the precious light of another day dawning, and the joy that life beholds.

One must wonder just what the ultimate impact of all the problems facing our society will have on the mental stability of our citizenry. While there have always been challenges throughout the ages I suspect that historians will report that we experienced an unusually stressful period that brought unwanted consequences.

Each of us sees the world slightly differently. If we were to make a list of the world’s problems, it would not only be long, but no two would be the same.
It is sufficient to say that we are experiencing troubling times, which can also present great opportunities for the future.

With this being the Easter Holiday weekend I suggest that we get back to basics and take some time to concentrate upon the most important things life affords each human being. Dr. David Viscott, noted psychiatrist and author once said, “To Love and be Loved is to feel the sun from both sides.” Live well, laugh often, and love with all of your heart.


Thursday, April 9, 2009


Having worked in the advertising and broadcasting business for over forty years, I continue to follow their economic status closely. In addition to watching broadcast and cable news, I read two home delivered newspapers, namely The South Bend Tribune and USA Today, and scan several newspapers on-line daily, i.e., The New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, and Chicago Sun Times.

Over the years I was personally responsible on an oversight basis for newscasts on eight different television stations, so I have some inside appreciation of the problems and opportunities news presents to station owners. I remember Chuck Scarborough as a bright, fresh faced, young anchorman at WDAM-TV in Hattiesburg, MS. I hired Jane Skinner for her first job out of college as a reporter for KBJR-TV in Duluth, MN. Chuck is leaving WNBC-TV in New York after thirty years as the number one anchor there and Jane is a daytime anchor at the Fox News Channel.

Each weekday morning I receive an online subscription to an insider newsletter titled “News Bluezette.” Lately there are an ever increasing number of reports of veteran station anchors being terminated, stations not renewing anchor employment contracts or extending early retirement offers to them. Stations are also slashing other newsroom employees: producers, reporters, editors, photographers, etc. Stations across the country are battling reduced advertising revenues and huge newsroom budget obligations. The majority of television stations are no longer owned by local individuals or families, but by huge corporations or investment houses. Therefore, the attainment of revenue goals rules all judgments.

On a daily basis we read of major newspapers closing or filing for bankruptcy. Increasingly young people today are not reading newspapers or viewing television. The American viewer is increasingly forced to watch lesser qualified television news people who are also operating with little or no backup support. We see a diminished product due to fewer reporters and production qualities also suffering significantly. Gone are too many veteran journalists who produced a product that you could bet your life on for accuracy and integrity.

The newspaper and television business has changed forever, and it will never be the same product that we all grew up reading and watching. Cable and the internet are now the choice as the source for news, information, and education. Years ago, the local paper and local newscasts were vital to our knowledge and ability to make intelligent decisions. Now we are misled by thin reporting, bias coverage, and staffs so small they cannot do the job properly. Today there are just too many competitive forces competing for each set of eyes. As a result, content suffers.

The future of many newspapers appears bleak, and I suspect we will be reading our local newspapers on our computers in the not too distant future. Thanks to union contracts, newspapers cannot be competitive. Television station revenues are falling. No one has found a way to successfully replace those dollars with a revenue stream generated by their websites. I predict we will eventually see one of the major networks drop all of their local affiliates and become strictly a cable network, saving hundreds of millions of dollars in the shift.

There have been a number of television and newspaper reporters of note over the years; people like Edward R. Murrow, Irving R. Levine, Tim Russert, Robert Novak, Roland Evans, Lawrence Spivak, Mike Royko. The same is true of publishers or network heads: Col. Robert McCormick of the Chicago Tribune, Ben Bentley who led the Washington Post to historical coverage of the Watergate Scandal, William Paley of CBS, Leonard Goldenson of ABC, and David Sarnoff of NBC.

I have been around long enough to know that one “must adapt or perish,” but I do long for the good old days when we could admire and depend upon our journalists for their hard work, accuracy and integrity. There are still many wonderful people toiling in media under increasingly difficult financial pressures, but they are becoming younger and younger and are less experienced than their predecessors. However, that is because they work for less and have a lesser impact on the budget. It’s sad, but true.

In the April 13th issue of Time Magazine there is an interesting factoid: “Since 1985 the number of reporters who cover Capitol Hill has DECLINED by 72%.” With a statistic like that would the Watergate Scandal ever have been investigated by journalists? A drop like this is not in our collective best interests.


Wednesday, April 8, 2009


Your Commander is old enough to admit openly that he has done some really dumb things in his life. Hopefully, it is constructive to openly admit to one’s youthful foolish behavior in the hope that someone can learn a valuable lesson.

Back in the mid-1960’s life was really going well for me having just been promoted to Vice-President of Midwest Sales, and awarded a seat on the company’s Board of Directors. For about ten years I had worked for a company owned and operated by one individual and I aspired to emulate him in many ways. You may remember that I have written about him in a series of stories such as Big Bill from Kansas. He was a most complex individual, but he was a real knockout when it came to his daily dress. Bill always wore beautiful silk Countess Mara ties and I hoped to someday be in a position to acquire some for my own apparel.

On my first real business trip to New York City, I was riding in a taxi into Manhattan from LaGuardia airport. In route through mid-town we were stopped in the usual heavy traffic and I spotted a huge store with the name COUNTESS MARA blazed across its marquee. Immediately I took note of the store’s location with the idea I would get back there while I was in New York sometime during the next few days.

Later in the day there was a break in our business meetings, and I was free for the next two hours before I was to join clients for cocktails at a local watering hole. Off to the Countess Mara store I shot, since it was only a couple of blocks away from company office.

Once in the store I was like a “hog in a pen of grease” with literally thousands of beautiful Countess Mara ties of every color and pattern. I do not remember seeing any price tags, and I selected a beautiful plain gold, a stunning conservative blue with stripes, and a great red patterned stunner. Off to the check-out counter I went, and damn near fell over when the sales clerk told me the total was some $80 dollars. (Today the ties go for $59.90 each or more.)

Being a real rube I’m sure there was an expression of total shock on my face, but I reached into my pocket and paid for the ties without further reaction. Once outside the store with the ties wrapped beautifully in a special Countess Mara bag I realized I only had about twenty dollars left to cover the rest of my out of pocket expenses in New York. Obviously, I should have had the smarts to tell the clerk that I would only take one tie, but I was too embarrassed to admit my foolish extravagance.

You must remember this happened back in the days when there were no sidewalk cash machines, so I was forced to cash a check back at the office much to my chagrin. That is not the end of the story, regretfully.

Remember, I was meeting clients for cocktails and dinner that evening. Returning to my hotel, I shaved and changed my shirt having traveled from Chicago very early that morning. I then decided I would wear one of my new Countess Mara ties to top off my appearance.

Our group gathered at a fancy Park Avenue French Restaurant. After ordering dinner, I excused myself to visit the “facilities”. Returning to the table the waiter had just delivered a beautiful bowl of French Onion Soup, and as I sat down, I proceeded to put the end of my brand new Countess Mara tie into the cheesy onion soup. Everyone at the table got a big laugh out of the situation, but me. All I could do was blot the tie with my napkin. The tie was never worn again, it was a total loss.

I learned two very valuable lessons that day; check the price of anything I intended to purchase, and, more importantly, I learned to be true to myself and not try to emulate someone or something that I was not. The other two ties were never worn by me, but given away as gifts. To this day I do not see a dish of French Onion Soup placed on a dinner table that this entire incident does not come back to mind, and honestly I haven’t ordered French Onion Soup since.

That is just a sample of the many valuable lessons your Commander has learned over the past 77 years. We live and learn. Isn’t life wonderful?



Your Commander is certainly not a prophet, but he does read our economic tea leaves extensively.

Our attention is currently being diverted and consumed during this economic calamity. However, shortly we will be confronted by massive shortfalls in the payment of out of control credit card balances. Already the news and talk-show circuit is being drawn to sudden increases in bank credit card charges. With little notice individuals who have been paying their bills properly are receiving notices that effective immediately their interest rate has been arbitrarily increased or their annual fee has been raised. The banks claim that the rate is negotiable, but their excuse is that default rates are growing dramatically, so they must cover their growing expenses.

Why is our Treasury Department not addressing the problem now? I suspect they know exactly how serious this issue has become, but it is another example of Rahm Emanuel’s “Let no crisis go unused”. Where will the money come from to bail out the credit card institutions? There must be a point where we can no longer keep printing money to address our financial shortcomings.

Please pay close attention to your credit card bills, and read the details carefully. Make sure to keep your balances current or you will suddenly pay a long lasting interest rate penalty.

What can come next? Well I will tell you that I expect to see our democracy directly attacked in some form, such as the dramatic 9/11 disaster. Hopefully our new administration is keeping its eyes and ears on threat analysis of our homeland defenses. With all my heart and soul, I hope I am totally wrong.


Tuesday, April 7, 2009


We have not reached the first 100 days of President Obama’s first term, and he has changed the way our government operates, directly influencing our daily lives for many decades.

Yes, President Obama did inherit economic chaos, but he had to know the condition of the economy when he was campaigning for the Presidency. On almost an hourly basis Obama or his stooges remind us that he “inherited” every problem facing America today. I suggest it is past time to keep reminding us of his inheritance, and get to work addressing the solutions. “Me thinks he doth protest too much”, because he, himself, and some of his Democrat henchmen were serving in Congress in the majority for the two years prior to his election as president. The appropriate oversight was not solely in the hands of the Executive branch, but included the Congressional membership, too.

The Stimulus Package, the Obama budget, the handling of the AIG/FreddieMac/FannieMae problems will impact the American taxpayers for several generations. The situation with our banks and the automotive industry will not fade away quickly. Where was the Congressional Committee oversight over the past years that permitted our economy to fall into trouble?

Now our President has crossed the Atlantic, meeting with leaders of twenty countries at the G-20, our NATO partners, and visiting several nations. While overseas, he committed our future interests to signed agreements whose contents we do not know. When will we, the taxpayers, be told the actual contents of these international obligations and their potential impact? I do not like America being required to bow to foreign leadership influence, when historically foreign leaders operate in their parochial self-interests. Let us remember, too, how many times our supposed friends within the United Nations have rebuffed initiatives of the United States.

It will be extremely interesting to see the final reaction and response taken by President Obama to North Korea’s calling the bluff of the free world by firing a rocket across Japan into the Pacific Ocean. Does anyone really believe the United Nations will support America’s concerns and interests? Both the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal have very interesting articles appearing in their April 5th editions. Thus far the UN has decided to take no action, which is not surprising at all.

Within these first 100 days we have our President going overseas, apologizing for American actions to countries whose very existence we have repeatedly saved (think WW I and WW II), followed by using American taxpayer’s money to rebuild their economies. I wonder how the offspring of those brave American fighting men who gave the ultimate sacrifice feel today.

While the pandering American media writes glowing stories about the warm reception being given to President Obama, and the clothes being worn by our First Lady, our supposed friends in Europe are holding firm and in essence rejecting our pleas for support. A perfect example is the rejection of the European bankers and the token addition of 5,000 NATO troops to our country saving efforts in Afghanistan. I feel our media reporting is very thin on objective analysis, but strong on adulation.

Personally I hope our President returns home soon, and stops flying Air Force One around the world while vital issues remain unattended back here in the USA. I do not like the fact that our President has quickly, and without any consideration of our Legislative Branch, signed agreements to abide by foreign banking groups in rulings impacting our economic understructure. Who gave President Obama the authority to grant oversight to foreign operatives of our financial systems?

In just a few days President Obama will fly off again to a gathering of unfriendly leaders of South American countries. God knows what he will apologize for next, or what promises he will make. Watch for a new open door policy on Cuba.

Our President says he does not consider the polls, but his inner-circle henchmen sure do, and I suspect there is growing concern about the increasing numbers of citizens who are unhappy with the direction of our country. While no Republicans voted in favor of the inflated budget, there were 10 brave Democrats who voted against it. Watch for them to be punished harshly by their leadership.

America has many unsettling issues to address, and it is time for Obama to set his big jet on the runway and get back to work, which in itself would save the taxpayer’s millions of dollars. Did you know that 500 support people flew to Europe for the president’s journey? What did that cost you and me?

While Obama and his entourage were bouncing around Europe accepting flowers and toasts of champagne, sick individuals were murdering honest hard working citizens in Pittsburg, PA and Binghamton, NY. While near Yakima, WA a distraught father killed his five children and then himself. I support our Constitution to permit our citizens to own firearms, but does anyone need assault weapon AK47’s?

Your Commander believes it is time for our President to get back to basics fulfilling his campaign promises to bring REAL CHANGE and TRANSPARENCY to our government. I find it very interesting to see our President slowly moving off some of his initial firm positions on policies that are now proving to be unrealistic, and self defeating. Consider Guantanamo…Obama announced in late January its closing within one year, yet there is still no plan regarding what to do with the people held there. Other examples where he is waffling involve carbon tax credits and the naive effort to stop smoking by increasing cigarette taxes, which immediately cuts Federal smoking tax income. What delivers votes sometimes proves to be unwise in the long run.

I believe the firing of the General Motor’s CEO was divisive, because he ignored the equally responsible UAW President in his unconstitutional action. Congressional rules forced on the auto industry must carry their share of responsibility to Detroit’s current problems, too. The Obama administration does not dare take any action that the Union would consider harmful, because they helped him get elected. Money speaks again against good government.

Looking at what has transpired thus far in the first 100 days of this administration has proven to me that all the crazy people are not in the institution; some are running our government, and jeopardizing our precious democracy.

Remember the wise words of Winston Churchill when he said, “The main vice of capitalism is the uneven distribution of prosperity. The main vice of socialism is the even distribution of misery.”


Saturday, April 4, 2009


Recently I reported that I had ordered two books from Amazon, namely CORSAIR and LIBERTY AND TYRANNY. Well they arrived; I opened CORSAIR first and could not put it down.

First of all, make me a promise that if you read CORSAIR you won’t peek and read the closing chapter or the Epilogue until you have read the entire book, because you will spoil your enjoyment of the author’s wonderful work.

CORSAIR is the fourth in the Oregon Files series jointly written by Clive Cussler and Jack Du Brul, and I consider it their very best collaboration. From page one until the final page there is outstanding research, action, adventure, historical intertwinement, and a conclusion that is simply marvelous. The authors masterfully address the intensity of the forces working against our democracy, religious freedom, and the American way of life. Recognizing the fact that CORSAIR is a work of fiction, it clearly draws attention to a subject that is receiving insufficient consideration from our innocent pacifist leadership.

It only took me two days to absorb this Action/Adventure thriller. Your Commander is sure you will love CORSAIR, as he did, and you will be recommending the book to your friends, too.

Now I have moved on to LIBERTY AND TYRANNY by Mark R. Levin, but I suspect it will take me far greater time to absorb its contents as it is a more studious work.


Friday, April 3, 2009


Back in the 1930’s and 1940’s I was a young, impressionable, spoiled only-child living a wonderful live in Chicago. Frequently, I would want to do something right now and my mother or father would stress the importance of making a reasoned decision.

Dad used to say, “Slow it down, and think about it”, or mom would say, “Haste makes waste.” Being too young to appreciate their advice, my reaction was typically that of an impetuous kid. It was not until many years later when I matured did I understand that my parent’s advice was wise and good council.

Do you remember the occasions when an important decision was to be made, and your first reaction was to act immediately in order to get the issue behind you? My dear wife’s Scottish mother is remembered to say in such situations, “What’s for you won’t go past you.” Additionally, I also remember being told to “Sleep on it”, and again it always proved to be a very sound recommendation.

I suspect you know where I am going with this commentary. It is becoming more obvious every day that our government and leadership are throwing good judgment to the wind, and rushing overly aggressive and lasting decisions without any period of reflection or analysis. A perfect example is the Congressional action on the Stimulus Bill that caused the vote to be taken before anyone could read the contents of the legislation. After the fact we learned that numerous questionable actions, such as Earmarks were deviously hidden and passed as part of the stimulus package.

On a daily basis we are seeing our politicians rushing to judgment that in reality is just a cover-up for ulterior motives or actions. We have learned that millions of dollars are unaccountable from the TARP funding which Congress once again passed in a hurry last fall. Legislation passed without any outline of strict accountability. Can you believe it? AND THIS IS OUR MONEY!

Just how long are we, the taxpayers, going to permit this appalling misuse of our hard earned money to continue? We complain, and the airwaves are full outlining the scope of financial irresponsibility by Congress, but it just seems to continue unabated. The solution to the erosion of our democracy is in our hands, and it is necessary for us to take firm action in the voting booths of America.

Why have we failed to take the constructive and sound advice our parents gave us years ago?


Wednesday, April 1, 2009


With all the turmoil in the world today my attention was drawn to a subject that is getting far too little in-depth study or recognition. What I am talking about is the Supreme Court of the United States. The media reminds us just how important an appointment is when one comes up, but our attention quickly fades following a Senate confirmation hearing of an appointee, whether the hearings are contentious or not (however, they usually are, even if for show).

Our short-spanned interest then focuses on the Court when highly controversial decisions are reached, such as the ruling that led to President George W. Bush’s election over Al Gore in 2000, or the decision on Roe vs. Wade. An example of confirmation was the extended harsh charges brought against appointee Judge Clarence Thomas alleging sexual harassment. Remember the battle that took place covering the failed appointment of Judge Robert Bork?

On a recent cable talk show I was reminded of the emotionally charged debates that take place within the Halls of Congress whenever a seat appears to be coming available on the High Court. Presidents throughout our history have been attempting to cast their lasting imprint on the Court with their appointments, either conservative or liberal.

Last week I heard about Mark R. Levin’s new best seller LIBERTY AND TYRANNY, which went to the top of the best selling list on the first day it was available on My copy arrived today, but on a recent visit to our local library, I found an earlier book written by Levin in 2005 titled MEN IN BLACK.

I highly recommend MEN IN BLACK, because it provides a thoroughly researched analysis of “How the Supreme Court is destroying America”. Without revealing too much about the book, the Supreme Court has long been a profoundly limited chamber to investigate.

Information about the inner-workings of this all powerful body are at best incomplete. Did you know that Justice Thurgood Marshall, who is regarded by most Democrats with total reverence, was actually incompetent during his later years of service? For instance, during his last SEVERAL years on the Court, he sat in his office every afternoon viewing the soap opera “Days of our Lives” rather than reviewing or considering Supreme Court material. Shockingly, there have been several Supreme Court Justices who were totally incapable (dementia or Alzheimers, no doubt) of performing their duties while serving their life-time appointments. I found it most egregious that the Court frequently interprets our precious Constitution to conform to the individual Justice’s point of view.

MEN IN BLACK is not always an easy read, but it is an extremely revealing and informative presentation of a vital subject. There may be few issues as important as our Supreme Court’s rulings and their long-lasting legal and social impact.

Your Commander will be reporting on Levin’s newest book shortly.