Monday, July 31, 2006

Castro temporarily relinquishes power to brother during surgery

Well, it's probably too soon to say "Farewell, Fidel," but the Cuban dictator is undergoing intestinal surgery and he temporarily relinquished power to his brother, Raul this evening.

The island country Castro took over in 1959 had one of the highest standard of livings in Latin America. Castro's dictator predecessor Fulgencio Batista led a prosperous nation; Castro's Cuba is one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere.

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Mel Gibson in alcohol rehab

I hope that Mel Gibson gets the help he needs. Bill Zwecker of CBS 2 Chicago reports tonight that the famed actor-director has been admitted to a rehab clinic.

Actor Mel Gibson has entered rehab following his arrest on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol, his publicist has confirmed.

Gibson's publicist, Alan Nierob, tells CBS 2's Bill Zwecker that Gibson has entered a rehab facility at an undisclosed location.

Gibson has apologized for what he said were "despicable" statements he made to the deputies who arrested him early Friday morning on Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu.

An official police report on Gibson's arrest on drunken driving charges substantiates claims that he made anti-Semitic remarks and threatened a deputy, a law enforcement official said Monday.

Perhaps the facility can cure Gibson of his problems with the bottle. But I hope he doesn't come out of the clinic blaming what he said on the booze. I won't believe him.

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Hotter than a distance runner's armpit out there

And I should know about how hot a distance runner's armpit should be, as I ran 12 miles in 96 F (36 C) heat this afternoon.

The National Weather Service has declared a heat emergency in much of the Midwest.

It actually wasn't that bad. I ran ten miles on July 17 with much more difficulty. However, in addition to being one degree less today, it was 97 on the 17th, it seemed less humid.

Once again, I have to add this disclaimer: Just because I did it, doesn't mean you should.

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Suburban Beirut: "Civilians" with anti-aircraft weapons

Either this group of Lebanese "civilians" are hunting for pterydactyls, or they hope to shoot down an Israeli jet.

Of course these suburban Beirut residents view their work as self defense, but they obviously don't care if their fellow suburbanites are killed by retaliatory Israeli Defense Force strikes. In the generally agreed upon rules of warfare, the men pictured are legitimate military targets. And if an IDF bombing strike destroys them and some nearby houses, who is to blame?

The picture, and the below excerpt, comes from Australia's Sunday Herald Sun:

This is the picture that damns Hezbollah. It is one of several, smuggled from behind Lebanon's battle lines, showing that Hezbollah is waging war amid suburbia.

The images, obtained exclusively by the Sunday Herald Sun, show Hezbollah using high-density residential areas as launch pads for rockets and heavy-calibre weapons.

Dressed in civilian clothing so they can quickly disappear, the militants carrying automatic assault rifles and ride in on trucks mounted with cannon.

The photographs, from the Christian area of Wadi Chahrour in the east of Beirut, were taken by a visiting journalist and smuggled out by a friend.

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Mel Gibson: Drunk and pissed

Of course if you're a British reader of this blog, you'll view that as a redundancy. "Pissed" in British slang means drunk, the informal meaning of the same word in American English refers to anger.

Mel was in California last weekend when he was arrested for drunk driving. He then went on a bizarre anti-Semitic verbal rampage.

Gibson's public image has taken a hit, and it's doubtful it will ever recover. As Gibson's primary audience has evolved from fans of action films to conservative Christians--many of whom, particularly Baptists, view Jews quite favorably--nagging doubts about Gibson's true feelings probably will never dissipate among these newer fans.

Worse: Mel's father has been making anti-Semitic comments for years.

Drunk driving arrests bring out the worst in people. If Gibson's handlers want to spin Mel out of this mess, perhaps they can allude to the similarly bizarre behavior of two famous Chicago Mikes: Ditka and the late Royko, who embarrassed themselves after they were busted by police for driving under the influence.

On the other hand, Ditka and Royko didn't cross the line into bigotry as Gibson did.

(Yes, Mike Royko did make some anti-gay comments in his tirade, but since Royko at that time had been writing columns that some viewed as "gay-bashing," the legendary columnist's public persona hadn't been altered much. Besides, when Royko was arrested, his career was heading downhill. Years of boozing took its toll, and he was no longer writng great columns on a regular basis.)

The Gibson directed Apocolypto, a Mayan epic, is scheduled for release on December 8.

We should have a good idea how much damage has been self-inflicted on Gibson's career after that date.

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Latest from the The League of Villains: Ahmadinejad awards Chavez

Three months ago on Marathon Pundit, I remarked that Iran was cozying up to anti-American and pariah states such as Venezuela, Sudan, and Cuba, forming a League of Villains.

Another League of Villains was formed by King Goobot to oppose Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius.

On Sunday in Tehran one villain recognized another. President Mahmud Ahmadinejad of Iran awarded in Venezuelan counterpart Hugo Chavez its highest honor, the Order of the Islamic Republic of Iran, First Grade.

From the Tehran Times:

During the ceremony at the University of Tehran, Ahmadinejad said the Middle East should free itself from the West's tyranny, adding that the West imposed the Zionists on Middle Eastern nations for two reasons: because of World War II and because their ancestors used to live in Palestine over 2,500 years ago.

"If such a rule is applicable, shouldn't all the world's borders be changed? Who were the inhabitants of the United States some 250 years ago?" he asked.

A bit more from the same article:

The award was bestowed upon the Venezuelan president to honor his valuable and brave efforts to establish a justice-based peace, his stance against the hegemonic system, and his support for endeavors to maintain the freedom and independence of the Venezuelan nation.

Related posts: This can't be good...Sudanese president in Iran

League of Villains update: Senior Iranian and Cuban meet

The League of Villains and China: the Left's great red hope against the USA

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Sunday, July 30, 2006

CAIR calls for end of Israeli "terror," but silent on Hezbollah missiles

The Israeli air-strike that led to the deaths of at least 56 Lebanese drew the ire of CAIR, the Council on American Islamic Relations today.

From a CAIR press release:

A prominent national Islamic civil rights and advocacy group today said the Bush administration and the international community must act to stop Israel's campaign of "terror" in Southern Lebanon.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) issued that call after an Israeli air strike killed at least 57 civilians in the town of Qana, the site of a similar massacre of civilians by Israel a decade ago. (In 1996, an Israeli air strike on a United Nations compound in Qana killed more than 100 civilians who had sought shelter there.) Lebanese officials said the majority of the dead in today's attack were children. Hundreds of Lebanese civilians have been killed in previous Israeli attacks.

For much of July, Hezbollah has been firing missiles into northern Israel. The rockets aren't that accurate, which of course means that the intent of the terror group can only be to kill civilians.

To my knowledge, outside of broad calls for a cease fire, CAIR has not--in specific language--ask that Hezbollah stop firing missiles into Israel.

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Mayor Daley to veto "big box" ordinance?

Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley just might veto the "big box living wage" ordinance. If he does, it'll be his first veto in his 17 years as mayor.

From the Chicago Sun-Times:

Mayor Daley didn't reveal if he will veto the city's new big-box ordinance Saturday, but he said the fight over the controversial "living-wage" law will continue.

"I've got time. We'll see. You'll see," Daley said.

The City Council voted Wednesday 35-14 in favor of requiring Wal-Mart and other retail giants to pay their employees a "living wage" of at least $10 an hour and $3 in benefits by 2010.

Daley said the ordinance would be most detrimental to the city's minorities because it could drive away businesses and jobs for teenagers

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Saturday, July 29, 2006

Marathon Pundit goes to Washington: Dorothy's ruby slippers

The famed ruby slippers, or one of the pairs (there were several used during the filming of The Wizard of Oz, are on display in the Smithsonian National Museum of American History.

The original star-spangled banner, that is, the one that inspired Francis Key to write the lyrics of what later became our national anthem, is currently being restored, but is still on display there.

Absolutely no pictures or videotaping of the banner is permitted. Which is why there's a picture of the slippers, instead of the famous flag.

Earlier this month, Little Marathon Pundit and I traveled to our nation's capital. Scroll down for more pictures and entries.

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Blogroll additon: Anti-CAIR

CAIR, the Coucil for American Islamic Relations, fashions itself along the lines of an NAACP for Muslims.

Here's what the senior senator of my home state, Democrat Dick Durbin, said about them:

[CAIR is] unusual in its extreme rhetoric and its associations with groups that are suspect.

His fellow Democrat, Chuck Schumer added:

"We know [CAIR] has ties to terrorism."

It came to my attention earlier today that Anti-CAIR, a site run by Andy Whitehead, is not on my blogroll. It is now.

Mr. Whitehead was sued by CAIR more allegedly committing libel against the group. The case was dismissed with prejudice by a judge in Washington. "With prejudice" means the plaintiff, in this case CAIR, can never sue Whitehead for the statements in the original suit in any court.

From Robert Spencer's Jihad Watch on March 30:

$1.35 million libel suit filed by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) against Andrew Whitehead of Anti-CAIR (ACAIR), who called CAIR a "terrorist front organization," that was "founded by Hamas supporters," and was working to "make radical Islam the dominant religion in the United States," has been dismissed with prejudice. According to ACAIR’s Mr. Whitehead, who posts at, "a mutually agreeable settlement."

Terms of the settlement are confidential. However, no apology was issued, no retraction or corrections made, and the statements that triggered CAIR’s suit remain on the ACAIR website.

More details on the dismissal can be found here.

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Israelis kill Islamic Jihad terrormaster

There is good news in the Holy Land tonight, as the Israeli Defense Forces killed thug Hani Awijan--leader of the Islamic Jihad--in the West Bank city of Nablus.

According to AP, Islamic Jihad was responsible for all 12 Palestianian suicide attacks in the last 17 months.

Good night and good riddance.

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Mr. Right's latest photo caption with Hillary Clinton

Mr. Right, metaphorically speaking of course, busts Hillary Clinton in the chops with his latest photo caption contest.

My entry is somewhat obscure, which gurantees me either greatness or failure. We'll see which wins out.

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Reinstate Klocek petition gets 1500th signature

Brian E. Vinson today become the 1500th signee of the Reinstate Thomas Klocek at DePaul petition. The goal of the Scholars for Peace in the Middle East is to have 2000 signatures to present to Chicago's DePaul University, asking the school to re-hire the man who taught there for 15 years.

Click here to add your name.

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Hate crime in Seattle--One dead, five wounded in synagogue shooting

Yesterday's Seattle synagogue murder rampage is so blatantly a hate-crime that there is no way the media can overlook the obvious.

From AP:

A lone gunman burst into a Jewish organization in downtown Seattle on Friday, killing one woman and wounding five others in what authorities were calling a hate crime.

Police said the gunman had been arrested without a struggle inside the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle, where the shooting took place, and was being questioned by police.

The gunman is a U.S. citizen, and police said initial contacts with him by phone while he was inside the building indicated that he was a Muslim.

The incident reminds me, and Michelle Malkin as well, of the July 4, 2002 El Al ticket booth shooting at LAX that left three dead.

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Friday, July 28, 2006

Chicago White Sox are in trouble

The world champion Chicago White Sox have been playing terrible baseball since the all-star break. Having been swept by their rivals the Minnesota Twins, the Sox crawl into a weekend series against Baltimore with no momentum--except that of heading backwards.

There is still a lot of baseball to be played, but the way the Sox are playing, it could be a painful two months for the South Siders.

As for the White Sox-Orioles series, tonight fellow White Sox fan McKreck of Occidentality will be live blogging the game. The game starts at 7:05pm central time.

Let's home he's not doing this without the accompaniment of loved ones.

UPDATE 10:45PM CDT: With some 9th inning heroics--a grand slam by sub Ross Gload, the White Sox pulled off a rare July win over the Orioles, with a 6-4 win. Occidentalty has a run-down on his blog.

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Hezbollah rocket hits Israeli hospital

I'm sure the Hezballoh terrorists are all broken up about hitting an Israeli hospital with one of their missiles--no one was killed or injured in that strike.

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Chicago Tribune: "Big box" legally suspect

All of the hooting and hollering, not to mention the threats made against Chicago alderman made by unions may not matter at all once the courts get involved in the Chicago "big box living wage" ordinance.

The bill cleared the Chicago City Council by a 35-14 vote on Wednesday.

From the Tribune, free registration may be required:

Before the Chicago City Council voted to pass the "big-box" living-wage ordinance, the city Law Department advised that there would be "significant risk" of a court overturning the law.

Legal opionions are all over the map on this issue. Supporters of the bill obviously don't agree with the city Law Department.

I feel compelled to conclude with my comment from my "big box" post from yesterday:

Sure it'd be illegal, but it would be a fair ending to this tale if the 35 alderman who voted for the "big box" wage bill were forced to pay the legal bills resulting from "big box" out of their own salaries. After all, they just voted themselves a raise.

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Thursday, July 27, 2006

Washington's National Zoo: They've got pandas there

Two weeks ago Little Marathon Pundit and I traveled to Washington DC.

On a drizzly Wednesday, we visited the National Zoo, located in fashionable Northwest Washington.

Although there is a lot of construction going on in the zoo--the Asian Trail exhibit is being built--it's still a great urban zoo.

Yes, we saw the giant pandas. All three of them. Unlike the San Diego Zoo, the panda area at the National Zoo is much more conducive to actually seing the pandas. But like the world-famous zoo, there are usually lines to see the pandas, and on a busy day, such as on a weekend day with good weather, visitors to zoo may go home disappointed because they didn't see those adorable black-and-whites.

Related posts: Pictures from DC, first entry is CAIR's headquarters

Marathon Pundit in Washington, then and now

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"Unfire" Ward Churchill?

Pirate Ballerina is keeping on top of what he's calling the "Unfire Ward Churchill" petition.

I support Ward Churchill's upcoming dismissal from the University of Colorado. Not because of his repulsive comments about the victims of the September 11 terrorist attacks, but because of his long history of academic misconduct.

In the post below, there's a petition in support of the reinstatement of fired DePaul Professor Thomas Klocek. In my opinion, Klocek was fired for what he said during a discussion inside a DePaul University cafeteria on September 15, 2004.

Some group called Teachers for a Democratic Society, not to be confused with the radical Students for a Democratic Society, has posted online the signers of a petition in support of keeping Ward Churchill employed as a professor at CU.

Oh, Students for a Democratic Society will be in town next week for their annual convention. The University of Illinois at Chicago is hosting them.

Some of the names I've noticed that I've blogged about:

Bill Ayers is a former Students for a Democratic Society member, who left the group in the late 1960s to form the domestic terrorist group, the Weather Underground. He's a tenured education professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Didn't I just mention that school?

His wife, Bernardine Dohrn signed it too. She's a tenured law professor at Northwestern University. Her membership in the Weather Underground caused the New York Bar Association to deny her a license to practice law in that state. She never did get a law license, but that didn't prevent her from becoming a tenured law professor at Northwestern.

According to Indian Country, Ward Churchill claimed in 1987 to have been a bomb-making instructor for the Weather Underground.

Three people from DePaul University signed the petition.

Ann Russo a professor with the school's Women's and Gender Studies Department, Nicole Perez, a DePaul graduate assistant who is a staffer with the DePaul Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered, Questioning, and Allies office...

... And Dr. Harvette Grey, the woman who invited Ward Churchill to DePaul for that disastrous paid speaking appearance at the school's Lincoln Park campus last fall.

DePaul's mistreatment of members of the DePaul Conservative Alliance, who tried to protest Churchill's appearance there, came to the attention of FIRE, the Foundation for Individual Rights for Education.

I've reviewed the Reinstate Klocek petition several times, and I've not noticed the signatures of Russo, Perez, or Grey. Other DePaul professors have signed it.

Yet I'm sure Russo, Perez, and Grey wholeheartedly support free speech. As do Ayers and Dohrn.

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This afternoon: Marathon Pundit to be guest on Constitutional Public Radio

Join the CPR chatroom!! I'm there!!!

This post will remain on top all day. Scroll down for newer posts.

Later today I'll be appearing on Andrea Shea-King and Mark Vance's Constitutional Public Radio show, which broadcasts on WWBC-AM 1510 on Florida's Space Coast. You can listen in via the internet if you don't live in the area.

My segment is scheduled to air live at 4:05pm Eastern Time (3:05pm Chicago Time).

Topics? My blog and I guess, how I blog, as well as DePaul/Klocek, Wal-Mart, and who knows what else.

Thanks Dave of Third Wave Dave being my point-man in getting me on the air and into your homes and workplaces.

UPDATE 2:45PM CDT: Just got back from my 14-mile run. Also, here is the petition to sign to reinstate Thomas Klocek at DePaul.

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Chicago alderman inside their boxes: Thinking of themselves

While yesterday's passing of Chicago's "big box" living wage ordinance was the major local news story--and it's gotten pretty heavy play nationally--one story got buried. Chicago's alderman voted themselves pay raise for themselves yesterday, (free registration may be required to access the link).

As for the "big box" bill, the unions no longer bother denying that they've threatened to run opponents against the soon-to-be-a-little wealthier aldercreatures if they voted "wrong" on "big box."

From the Chicago Sun-Times:

Aldermen had made commitments to organized labor months ago. They were not about to renege -- and test labor's threat to run candidates against sitting aldermen.

Today's John Kass column in the Chicago Tribune is a work of brilliance. Here is an excerpt, and yes, free registration may be required:

As public policy, the big-box ordinance is certainly unconstitutional. It is an insidious attempt by Chicago politicians to squeeze businesses that hoped to open new markets--particularly underserved minority neighborhoods--while providing tax revenue and thousands of desperately needed jobs to unskilled workers, many of them black and Latino.

"I've got these white liberals telling me what's good for my community. But this big-box thing will cost black people jobs," Ald. Ike Carothers (29th) told me during Wednesday's pontifications.

"If I put out a notice that there were 500 jobs waiting in my ward--what Wal-Mart was offering for each store--you'd see a line of people from my ward all the way to Mississippi. People want jobs. That's it."

Eventually, Wednesday's histrionics will cost taxpayers even more money, once lawyers start generating billable hours. Ultimately, the 14th Amendment of the Constitution, requiring equal protection under the law, should trump the council's economic populism.

Sure it'd be illegal, but it would be a fair ending to this tale if the 35 alderman who voted for the "big box" wage bill were forced to pay the legal bills resulting from "big box" out of their own salaries. After all, they just voted themselves a raise.

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DePaul DeTritus

For the year-and-a-half lifespan of this blog, I've had many posts on the shenanigans at Chicago's DePaul University, America's largest Catholic university. Foremost among the DePaul stories I've blogged about are the Thomas Klocek free speech struggle. as well as DePaul Assistant Professor of Political Science Norman G. Finkelstein, a holocaust-minimizer, as well as the shoddy treatment the DePaul Conservative Alliance has received from the DePaul administration.

I've only blogged once about DePaul Professor of Law M. Cherif Bassiouni once. It was an important post. Bassiouni wrote an op-ed with the goal of blunting criticism of Islam for that nasty habit of pronouncing death sentences for those who leave the faith. Bassiouni claims, sort of, that killing apostates is not a capital offense in Islam.

Well it certainly is, Jihad Watch's Robert Spencer answers back, and Bassiouni knows it, according to Spencer in his post.

Earlier this month the role of CAIR in the dismissal of Thomas Klocek became public.

Christina Abraham, CAIR Chicago's civil rights coordinator, told filmmaker Grant Crowell the group recommended to DePaul that the university fire Klocek after he got in a heated out-of-classroom discussion with some DePaul Muslim students. The students told CAIR Klocek threw papers at them and that they felt physically threatened by the sixty year-old. Klocek was fired by DePaul, but without the due process rights that even adjunct professors such as Klocek are entitled to, according to DePaul's guidelines.

Christina Abraham is a DePaul law student. Professor Bassiouni has ties to CAIR, serving in the role of a guest speaker at CAIR events in Michigan, Illinois, and California.

Some more DePaul detritus:

DePaul University Professor of Islamic Studies Aminah McCloud appeared in a recent CAIR testimonial film. In the book The Professors: The 101 Most Dangerous Academics in America by David Horowitz, Professor McCloud was given the "honor" of being among the 101.

Thomas Ryan in FrontPage Magazine wrote about McCloud last year:

McCloud teaches the courses "Islam in the United States," which has as its objective to leave students with a basic understanding of the history of the contemporary communities of Muslims in the United States; and "Islam in Global Contexts," which attempts to provide "an overview of the worldview of Islam with a focus on its historical development in major parts of the world." One of the books McCloud uses as a required reading for both of these courses is Seyyed Hossein Nasr's book The Heart Of Islam: Enduring Values for Humanity. An apologist's view of Islam, the text habitually conceals the darker sides of fundamentalist Islam. In the book Nasr writes, "When some people attack Islam for inciting struggle in the name of justice, they forget the Boston Tea Party and the American Revolution." In this rudimentary and erroneous observation, Nasr is equating terrorist attacks and suicide bombings enacted on innocent civilians to throwing tea into the Boston Harbor.

To view and sign the Reinstate Thomas Klocek Petition, click here, then sign. Let DePaul University know how you feel.

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Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Mr. Right's photo caption contests goes polar

Mr. Right (thanks for the link) has another fun photo caption contest up, this one features a zoo favorite, the lovable polar bear.

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Prairie coneflowers in Illinois

And whoever said good pictures can't be taken with camera phones needs to take a look at this one. I took it this afternoon on my Motorola V3 RAZR in the Linne Woods Forest Preserve in Morton Grove. The only thing wrong with the picture is the invasive plant Queen Anne's lace in the corner.

Good blogging tip: Carry a camera phone or a digital phone (but keep both away from water, including rain), whenever you can. You never know what bloggable thing you may encounter. Oh, but don't break the law either, and you know what I mean....

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Anti-jobs "big box"ordinance passes Chicago City Council

Longtime Chicago Tribune sports columnist Bob Verdi often calls Chicago, in a play on words of Carl Sandburg's description of the town, the "City of broad shoulders and narrow trophy cases."

Now that the "living wage" ordinance focusing only on "big box" retailers such as Target and Wal-Mart has passed the Chicago City Council, the city's new moniker may end up being the "City of broad shoulders and empty storefronts."

A test case for my theory is the boondoggle known as the Gateway Shopping Center in Joe Moore's 49th Ward. Moore, the anti-foie gras zealot, was the main sponsor of the bill.

The bill passed the council by a surprisingly large margin, a veto-proof 35-14. However, Mayor Richard Daley could still veto the bill, forcing big labor to worry about a few defections as the Council attempts to override Daley's first veto in his 17 years as mayor.

It's easy to view Wal-Mart, Target, and Home Depot as the losers today. The real losers are the people who won't have jobs in the stores that won't be opening in Chicago. The "big boxes" have plans to put stores in the underserved areas of the city, with no viable retail presence there for the "big boxes" to displace.

Chicago will continue to tax revenue to the suburbs and the web. It's an old article, but in 2004 Crain's Chicago Business reported:

MetroEdge calculates that city dwellers spent $32 billion on retail goods in 2003, but only $25.5 billion of that amount was spent in the city. The remainder was spent elsewhere — anywhere from the suburbs to the Internet. The size of the gap is debatable; MetroEdge's sales estimates don't exactly match what the state reports. But what's beyond question is that the city of Chicago is understored.

Liberal activists, columnists, and bloggers are claiming Wal-Mart and Target are bluffing when the retail behemoths state they'll cut back or cancel their expansion moves into the Second City. My hunch is they're not. Look for Wal-Mart to create a "big box" necklace along the borders of America's third most-populous city if the "big box" ordinance stands.

The sales tax in Chicago for most goods is 9 percent, with 2.25 percent of each sale going into city coffers. If it's not sold in the city, the city collects nothing.

Chicago's first Wal-Mart will open next month on the impoverished West Side, employing about 450 people. Wal-Mart has told Chicago leaders that the retailer has plans--or had plans, I should say, to open 10 or 20 stores in the city. You do the math.

On the positive side, Wal-Mart Watch, the Service Employees International Union funded group, is looking to hire a press secretary. So a Wal-Mart opponent has one job to offer.

For more read Crazy Politico's Rantings, Bankrollers come first in Chicago, and McHenry County Blogs, Using government to do what unions can't.

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Review: Ted Kennedy's children's book, "My Senator and Me"

In preparation for our recent trip to Washington, Little Marathon Pundit rode her bike to the Morton Grove Public Library, checking out several books about our nation's capital.

One of those books was the recently published My Senator and Me, A Dog's Eye View of Washington, written by Senator Edward M. Kennedy.

It's a children's book written from the perspective of Kennedy's Portuguese Water Dog, Splash. Yes, the dog's name really is Splash, and pundits have made wisecracks about the name in reference to that 1969 driving incident, but in fairness to Splash, the wet-nosed one was named that before Kennedy bought him.

As the dog explains:

I know a lot about the Senate because I work there too, always at the side of my Senator. His name is Edward M. Kennedy. My name is Splash. Let me explain....

The only way to become a Senator is to be elected by the people of your home state.

(My note: Having a multi-millionaire father and a brother in the White House helps a bit, as Kennedy learned in 1962.)

Sadly, conflict invades Splash's world, as the canine tells the reader after what seems to be good news arrives at Kennedy's office.

"The Senate has voted to approve our education bill!" one staff member says. "Our bill will make schools safer, let them hire more teachers, and even put a computer in every classroom!"

But the House of Representatives passed a different education bill," says another staff member. This is a problem."

"Well there is no time to lose, says the Senator. "We need to meet with the members of the House immediately and work out the differences between the two bills. The schoolchildren are counting on us!"

Splash doesn't go into any detail on what else is in his Senator's bill. Knowing Kennedy, it's a safe assumption that school vouchers or merit pay for teachers are not in Kennedy's legislation.

Spoiler alert:

A conference between the House and Senate members to work out the differences between the bill takes place. It goes on and on...and an agreement on the bill is finally reached after Splash barks a couple of times.

The vote on the bill takes place, which is somewhat distressing to Splash, since dogs aren't allowed on the Senate floor.

One nugget of agreed-upon-truth is uttered by the dog, who writes:

I've seen plenty of Senators, and they don't behave any better that I do.

Do you really need to be told if the bill is approved by the Senate?
On the positive side, the artwork is superb, the illustrator for "My Senator and Me" is Caldecott Medal winning artist David Small. The dog appears pretty cute, and Small honestly draws Kennedy in all his girth, with the Senator's jowls prominently outlining his face.

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Medved on Israel's right to exist

If you have a liberal friend who you may feel is tottering to the other side, turn that person on to Michael Medved's talk radio show. Medved is a former liberal. In addition, he doesn's possess the baggage of someone like Rush Limbaugh or Bill O'Reilly, and the tone of Medved's show is not confrontational. Medved regularly accepts calls from those who oppose his views, and Medved doesn't berate those callers, but shoots them down in calm responses doused in common sense.

Medved has a good eye for stories, he was the first radio talker to interview fired DePaul professor Thomas Klocek on the air.

"Does Israel have a right to exist?," Medved asks in today's

For those who instinctively resist any comparison of Israel’s "right to exist" with that of the United States, the crucial difference must be one of longevity: America has now enjoyed 230 years of prosperous independence, while Israel has yet to reach its sixtieth birthday. Yet other nations (Slovakia? Turkmenistan? Namibia?) have come into being far more recently than Israel, without endless public challenges to their legitimacy. Montenegro, for instance, just joined the family of nations a few months ago—despite the fact that more that 45% of the citizens of the new country voted against its independence.

Here is another paragraph I like:

Mark Twain visited the Holy Land in 1867, shortly before the commencement of modern Jewish resettlement, and described it as "a desolate country whose soil is rich enough, but is given over wholly to weeds—a silent, mournful expanse… A desolation is here that not even imagination can grace with the pomp of life and action." According to the careful population figures of the Ottoman Empire, in 1882 (at the very beginning of the modern, organized Jewish immigration back to the ancestral home), the total population of land between the Jordan and the Sea was less than 250,000 – in an area that today supports ten million people, Israelis and Palestinians.

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Big day for "big box" ordinance in Chicago

In two months, Chicago's first Wal-Mart will open, 450 people will be employed by the West Side store. But later today, a vote in Chicago's City Council might ensure that this will be the only Chicago Wal-Mart for the foreseeable future.

This Chicago Tribune editorial (free registration required) closely matches my opinion on this event:

Chicagoans without jobs flooded Wal-Mart with applications for those 450 openings. The lucky ones will be going to work Sept. 19. The unsuccessful Wal-Mart applicants had better hope their aldermen focus on how to keep more new jobs like these coming to town--rather than on how to shunt them to suburbia at the behest of organized labor.

I took this picture outside a storefront near the still under-construction Niles Wal-Mart on Golf Road.

If a majority of Chicago's 50 alderman for the "living wage" big box ordinance later today, signs like the one above probably won't be seen in Chicago for a long time.

And by the way, just how many job offers do the United Food and Commercial Workers and the Service Employees International Union hand out?

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Christian mouthpiece for Iranian gov't writes Pope denouncing Israel

Hoo boy, another crappy article from the Tehran Times!

Here is today's entry:

Jonathan Betkellia, who represents Iran’s Assyrian and Chaldean Christians in the Majlis, has written a letter to Pope Benedict XVI denouncing Israel’s brutal attacks on the Lebanese nation, a report released by the Majlis media department said on Tuesday.

Betkellia, who is also the director of the Asian branch of the World Union of Assyrians, called for efforts to relieve the Lebanese nation from the Zionist assaults.

"Jesus Christ has said share your neighbor’s sorrow and pain … today, the Zionist regime has launched barbaric attacks on Lebanon following the massacre it carried out in Gaza. By bombing a land which has suffered long years of war, Israel has caused insecurity, destruction and massacre in Lebanon."

Iran's constitution sets aside a few parliamentary seats for non-Muslims. That same constitution, a blueprint for a lazy-susan system of Islamofacism, also proscribes the death penalty for Muslims who change religions--even to Christianity, something left out of Betkillia's letter.

Of course, that letter may have been written for him, with the "suggestion" that he sign his name to it.

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Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Arrest made in Indiana sniper case

From ABC 7 Chicago:

An arrest was made Tuesday in a series of sniper shootings in Indiana. One person was killed and another wounded in four sniper attacks on drivers on interstates 65 and 69 on Sunday. Now, 17-year-old Zachariah Blanton is charged with murder.

Indiana State Police were joined by the governor of Indiana to announce the arrest Tuesday afternoon. Those shootings happened Sunday in Seymour and Muncie, and put the region on high alert.

Zack Blanton is a shot-putter on his high school track team. Now, he is charged with firing a different kind of shot. Detectives say last weekend Blanton was with some friends hunting deer on property his family owns in southern Indiana. They say the teenager left the posse in a red pickup truck, and then committed the sniper attacks that killed one man, wounded another and shot up several vehicles.

It's believed the Hammond shooting earlier today is a copycat crime, which sounds harmless, but the nut shot at a passing car.

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Marathon Pundit in Washington: Then and now

I posted the first photo a couple of weeks ago here. It was taken in 1971 on the southeast corner of the Capitol building. Two weeks ago, the second picture was taken by my cousin Kate. There's a new Capitol visitor's center being built, so we were unable to access the same corner, Kate took this photo on the northwest end.

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Indiana sniper attacks

For the second time in three days, a sniper attack has occurred in Indiana. No one was injured in today's shooting in Hammond, near Chicago, although the passenger window was smashed.

Clearly the intent to kill was there.

In Seymour, Indiana near downstate Bloomington, one person was killed and another wounded by a sniper on Sunday. And there are reports of sniper attacks near Muncie, in the central part of the state.

I hope I'm wrong, but these attacks will probably continue.

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News from CENTCOM: Raid in Balad

CENTCOM sent me this press release a few minute ago.

BAGHDAD, Iraq – Coalition forces killed one terrorist, wounded another and detained one associate during a raid north of Balad on the morning of June 24.

Reliable intelligence indicates that the targeted terrorists were associated with numerous senior al-Qaida in Iraq members including two local Emirs. The group is also reported to be tied to another recently captured individual who had previously led the overall network and has since admitted to countless attacks on Iraqi civilians.

While the troops were moving to the target area they encountered two armed terrorists who attempted to engage the ground force. The ground force immediately engaged the terrorists killing one and wounding the other. The wounded terrorist was provided immediate first aid on site.

Multiple men fled the immediate target area upon arrival of the assault force. The ground force then quickly contained and secured the target area.

The troops pursued and ultimately detained another suspect.

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African-Americans oppose "big box," plus interesting editing

Fran Spielman writes about Chicago's "big box" ordinance, and notes something that even supporters of "living wages" agree on. African Americans oppose this bill:

Dr. Leon Finney of the Metropolitan Apostolic Community Church said recent polls commissioned by black ministers show voters in African-American wards oppose the big-box ordinance by 70-to-80 percent margins.

Finney scoffed at the threat by union leaders to finance candidates against incumbent aldermen who oppose the ordinance.

"Since when do we know that the labor unions have been able to elect anybody to office? . . . If an alderman decides to vote the interests of their people, they should be punished?'' Finney said.

Spielman's article was picked up by the affiliated Daily Southtown. Here's that first excerpted paragraph from the Southtown:

Leon Finney of the Metropolitan Apostolic Community Church said recent polls commissioned by black ministers show that voters in majority black wards overwhelmingly oppose the big-box ordinance.

Maybe I'm being a bit picky, but since the Sun-Times version of that paragraph is--at least to me--more effective in communicating the strong opposition of blacks to the "big box" ordinance, was the person who edited Spielman's Daily Southtown version of her article trying to diminish the punchiness of Fran's point?

More details on opposition to "big box" in the African American community in this May Marathon Pundit post, Chicago's "big box" anti-jobs ordinance.

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Monday, July 24, 2006

Asia nuke watch: Don't forget about Pakistan

Although Pakistan is ruled by friendly-to-the-US Pervez Musharraf, a coup led by Muslim extremists could put Pakistan's nuclear arsenal into the hands of al-Qaeda supporters.

After all, General Musharraf became President Muhsarraf in a coup, albeit a bloodless one. Coups are common in Pakistan.

Britain's Guardian paper has a story that may not get the attention it deserves.

Pakistan appears to have embarked on a dramatic expansion of its nuclear arsenal with the construction of a new heavy water reactor capable of producing enough plutonium for up to 50 warheads a year, according to a report released yesterday by a US thinktank.

The report by the Institute for Science and International Security (Isis), is largely based on commercially available satellite images showing a large building site at a nuclear production complex at Khushab, in Pakistani Punjab. Isis, a non-governmental nuclear watchdog, estimates that the huge rectangular building under construction and the circular structure inside it almost certainly represent the early stages of a 1,000MW reactor capable of generating more than 200kg (440lbs) of weapons-grade plutonium per year. When completed it would be 20 times the size of the existing reactor at Khushab.

The Khushab complex uses deuterium oxide, known as heavy water because of its chemical similarity to water, to produce plutonium and tritium, which is used as a booster in nuclear fission weapons.

50 warheads a year. The war between Israel and Hezbollah has grabbed the headlines, but this is a story to keep an eye on.

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More on Chicago's "big box" ordinance

It's no surprise that unions are playing hardball with Chicago's 50 alderman as Wednesday vote on the "big box living wage" bill comes to a vote, according to CBS 2 Chicago.

Ordinance opponent Hermene Hartmann said in a Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce press conference today, "They're telling aldermen they're going to vote them out with their troops, and they're going to dry up their financial resources."

Which of course is consistent with comments made last month by Alderman Bernard Stone:

The unions have backed aldermen against the wall. They've threatened to fund opponents against them and to solicit opponents to run against" (those who dare to oppose the big-box ordinance).

Mayor Richard Daley also opposes the "big box" bill.

More from CBS 2 Chicago:

Mayor Daley called the big box ordinance a form of racial discrimination against inner city areas.

"When they come into the inner city, they're going to blanket that out," Daley said. “No, no, no. That's what redlining is."

The mayor says no one complained when Wal-Marts were being built in the suburbs and that inner-city residents deserve jobs and shopping choices, too.

It'll be an interesting day in Chicago on Wednesday.

Related posts: Ald. Joe Moore, retail genius

Wal to Wal Chicago blogging

Wal-Mart scorecard: Niles 2, Chicago 1

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Actual Tehran Times headline: "Condi, warrior princess, comes to town"

The Tehran Times newspaper is always good for a few laughs.

Yes, the headline for the story in the paper about her visit to Israel really is, Condi, warrior princess, comes to town.

Here is a representative paragraph from this execrable article.

The actions of the Bush administration have shown that the attack on Lebanon and the Hezbollah resistance movement was premeditated. Otherwise, there would have been no justification for such an all-out offensive in response to the capture of two soldiers

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Coming Thursday: Marathon Pundit to be guest on Constitutional Public Radio

A big thanks to Third Wave Dave for arranging my appearance on Andrea Shea-King and Mark Vance's Constitutional Public Radio. CPR is broadcast on AM 1510 WWBC on Florida's vibrant Space Coast. If you're not Jeannie, Major Nelson or Dr. Bellows, or you don't live there, you can listen in via the internet.

My segment is scheduled to air live at 4:05pm Eastern Time (3:05pm Chicago Time). Again, that's on Thursday, July 27.

For certain, DePaul, Thomas Klocek, and CAIR will be topics that will be discussed. A lot can happen in four days, so it's a tough guess to say for certain what else might come up, but I imagine Pajamas Media will be another point of conversation.

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Ald. Joe Moore, retail genius

On Wednesday a vote is scheduled to take place in Chicago's City Council on the Chicago "Big Box Living Wage" ordinance.

Ald. Joe Moore, a two-year opponent of Wal-Mart and other "big box" stores, is the sponsor of the ordinance.

Supporters of the bill include the usual suspects: unions and the far left. Opponents include business leaders, as well as African-American community and church leaders.

Before becoming an alderman, Moore was an attorney for the City. He has no experience in retail.

Yesterday morning, I drove down Howard street to take a look at the Gateway Shopping Center, a project that was built at the inspiration of Alderman Moore, who helped grease things along by using the power of eminent domain to get the place built.

Driving west on Howard from Sheridan Road, I notice quite a few empty store fronts on Howard east of Gateway. West of Gateway too.

Arriving at the shopping center, I noticed, it does look pretty nice. A non-big box discounter, probably not union, Marshall's is there. Grocer Dominick's has a store, and yes, they're union.

But among the smaller units there, set aside for specialty outlets, about one-third sit empty. Gateway opened in 2000.

Now that "expert" in retail, Joe Moore, wants to tell the rest of Chicago how retail businesses should operate in the City.

For those readers living outside of Chicago, a quick lesson in how things are done in the Second City is needed. There's a "gentleman's agreement" among the Chicago's fifty alderman that the council member representing the ward, using--or shall I say, abusing zoning laws, exerts enormous power on what is built---or not built--in their ward.

Oh, the picture was taken Sunday morning in front of one of the many vacant store lots at Gateway. Call the number listed if you need retail space in Chicago's Rogers Park community.

Thanks for the link:

Rogers Park Bench

Sunday, July 23, 2006


I believe the maker of this sign, which reads "Permitted walk/runs are prohibited from using this path; please remain on the lakefront trail," meant to say "Walk/runs with permits are prohibited..."

I took this photo this morning in Chicago's Lincoln Park, near Addison.

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The anti-Israeli Jews deck of 52 (plus two jokers)

I found this in my e-mail box this morning. It's the 54 top anti-Israeli Jews. DePaul's Norman Finkelstein is the jack of hearts.

Noam Chomsky, Amy Goodman, Mark LeVine, and Bobby Fischer also made the deck.

Click here for to see all 54.

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Saturday, July 22, 2006

Illinois Democratic candidates roll call: Where is Alexi, the boy-banker?

Wandering around the web is a pretty good exercise for bloggers to find stories.

Last night I found my self on the official web site of the Illinois Democratic Party,

I checked on the candidate page. The Democrat's candidate for governor, Rod Blagojevich is there, as is his running mate, Pat Quinn. For attorney general, Lisa Madigan....Jesse White, for secretary of state, Dan Hynes, comptroller....

Gee, someone is missing! Where is the Democrats' candidate for state treasurer, Alexi Giannoulias?

Could it be Alexi was accidentally omitted by a careless Illinois Democratic Party webmaster?

Or did he drop out of the race? I was out of town last week, so I might have missed something....

No, he's still running. In fact, Friday Alexi Giannoulias was campaigning in downstate Quincy, Illinois, as the Quincy Herald-Whig (cool name, isn't it?) reports.

There's been an ethical cloud surrounding Giannoulias since for the last few months.

From Crain's Chicago Business, March 13:

But there are a few other things voters might want to know before putting a 29-year-old Democrat who never has held government office in charge of investing $7 billion of your money each year.

Like how Broadway Bank financed property used for a gun store so notorious that it was sued by Mayor Richard M. Daley and finally shut down by federal authorities. Or how the bank lent money to a crime figure convicted of running a national prostitution ring to buy land in Florida. Not to mention the Texas lawsuit that contends Mr. Giannoulias and the bank "extorted" a nearly $100,000 loan fee. And the $5,000 campaign donation Mr. Giannoulias returned after revelations that the donor bought a fleet of gambling boats from a group including indicted Washington, D.C., lobbyist Jack Abramoff.

Abramoff? Isn't he that corrupt Republican guy?

Via Rich Miller's Capitol Fax, here is an excerpt from a Chicago Tribune editorial a month later:

Let’s get this straight. Voters are supposed to be impressed by Giannoulias’ experience at the bank. Yet his defense here is that he was clueless as to what his bank was doing?

And he wants to take control of the entire state treasury?

Giannoulias was asked if it was acceptable for a state treasurer to lend money to crime figures. His response to Tribune reporter David Jackson: The treasurer should work to get "the best rate of return for taxpayers to create jobs."

What, no questions asked?

Actually, it seems understandable that the Illinois Democratic Party "forgot" to list the boy-banker from its list of candidates for statewide office.

For those living outside Illinois, you're probably wondering how Alexi won the nomination to run as the Democratic candidate for state Treasurer? Paul Mangieri was the candidate endorsed by the state party.

However, St. Barack, also known as Illinois Senator Barack Obama, stepped in and endorsed Giannoulias. It was the only endorsement Obama made in an Illinois contested primary race.

From ABC 7 Chicago in February:

Obama is the narrator in a new TV spot that launches a million-dollar-plus statewide ad campaign, financed in large part by Giannoulias's wealthy family which owns the Broadway Bank in Chicago, where Alexi's a vice president and contributes a lot of money to a lot of candidates, including Obama.

"The treasurer's job is a financial job. He's the candidate who has financial experience," said Senator Barack Obama, (D)-Illinois.

"When he told me he would be endorsing my candidacy, I promised I would never waver in my inherent desire to help people at every level have better lives," said Alexi Giannoulias, (D)-candidate for state treasurer.

The commercial, in which Obama calls Giannoulias "One of the most outstanding young men I could ever hope to meet" is still viewable on Alexi's web site.

A lot of questions need to be answered. The ones Alexi need to answer are pretty clear. The Illinois Democratic Party has to answer if it's just an oversight that Giannoulias was "disappeared" from the listing of Democratic statewide candidates on the official party web site.

And Obama needs to answer why he chose to endorse the boy-banker to shepherd $7 billion dollars in state funds?

Was there a quid-pro-quo?

Oh, a personal note to Senator Obama: With your connections, can you please get Alexi up on that site?

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Pajamas Media suberb coverage of the Israel-Hezbollah war

Sometimes it pays to beat your own chest, as Roger L. Simon did when he sent me an e-mail about yesterday's Pajamas Media press release.

EL SEGUNDO, Calif., July 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Pajamas Media (PJM) is providing special extended coverage of the Middle East War in conjunction with its new initiative called Politics Central. Within the PJM Network of 90 bloggers are several in theater commenting on the war between Hamas, Hezbolla and Israel from a first hand perspective. Pajamas has also been providing a real time and continuous chronology of news events via its global editors and contributors. Within PJM's new Politics Central initiative, PJM is distributing exclusive podcast interviews that are longer and more in depth than typical cable news organizations are able to provide.

Continuous Real Time Middle East Chronology via International Editors and Contributors

With full-time editors in Sydney, Barcelona and Los Angeles working with contributing bloggers worldwide in such places as Tel Aviv, Haifa, Baghdad and Washington, Pajamas Media has been offering round-the-clock battlefield reporting in tandem with the most thoughtful commentary from the global blogosphere and traditional sources. Under the guidance of Editor-in-Chief Gerard Van der Leun in Seattle, Pajamas Media mixes the best news and views from on-the-scene citizen journalists with seasoned professionals in an unprecedented manner.

A literal living chronology of the ongoing Israel-Hezbollah War has been created and made available on the Pajamas Media front page ( "This chronology's intention is to give the public moment-to-moment access to the vicissitudes of the war and ultimately to provide historians with a record of the evolving struggle," says Pajamas' CEO Roger L. Simon.

Podcast Interviews with Middle Eastern Bloggers and Citizens

In the early stages of the war, PJM wanted direct and exclusive coverage from the Middle East. With this Politics Central readers could actually hear what was going on from the people on the ground themselves.

"When we discovered a seventeen-year old -- Eugene -- blogging from a bunker in Haifa ('Live from an Israeli Bunker' @, we jumped at the opportunity to do a podcast interview with him," said Simon. After Simon's podcast with Eugene was published on the Pajamas Media site, the young man from Haifa was immediately interviewed by the Washington Post, CNN and NBC, creating a virtual blog firestorm.

Pajamas Media's Politics Central is now planning other podcasts from the Middle East to appear in the next few days. Some of these will feature Arab bloggers talking with Israeli bloggers.

Exclusive Podcast Interviews of Government and Political Representatives

"We are increasing our podcast program overall," states Simon. "We had recently published podcast interviews focusing on US issues with Senator Rick Santorum and through Instapundit's Glenn and Helen Show, with Senator John McCain. When the Middle East conflict started to expand we wanted to get access to an Israeli official. We weren't sure we could, but we tried and were able to land an interview with the Israeli US Ambassador Daniel Ayalon. Our interview lasted 14 minutes compared to cable news organizations of perhaps 3- 4 minutes. This flexible timeframe is one of our advantages compared to the more sound bite oriented mainstream media approach."

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Wal to Wal Chicago blogging

Former Illinois State Representative Cal Skinner has his take on Wal-Mart. He focuses on the short-sightedness of Chicago's public officials in regards to the retail giant.

So, imposing restrictions on a private enterprise like Wal-Mart, compelling it not to build new stores in Chicago hurts not only:

· the residents who might get the jobs,
· the city that will not get the sales tax,
· the schools which will not get the property tax, but it also hurts
· the CTA

And, it increases the pressure on Chicago politicians to raid the revenue sources of the suburbs--still again--in order to feed the seeming insatiable financial appetite of the Chicago Transit Authority.

Cal also refers to John Kass' Friday Chicago Tribune column about Wal-Mart. Kass' beat is local politics, not business, but Wal-Mart's opponents, mostly unions, have made Wal-Mart a major political issue in the Second City. Next Wednesday, a vote is scheduled by Chicago's City Council on a "living wage" ordinance for "big box" stores. The bill's sponsor, Joe "No Foie Gras for Me" Moore drafted it with Wal-Mart in mind. The way the bill is written, the "living wage" requirement will only apply to Wal-Mart, Target, and Home Depot. Using Moore's logic, all other retailers in Chicago are free to pay their workers "unlivable wages."

From Kass's column, free registration may be required:

Politics abhors a vacuum. And what's filling it is organized labor. The labor unions are reasserting themselves, committing money and political workers to the election of labor-friendly aldermen. Included in this new effort is a new wrinkle: aldermanic schools, where candidates can learn how to win.

You might call it the Academy of You Want to Be an Alderman? But I'd call it the Institute of Do You Wanna Stay in Office?

"We're supporting the living-wage ordinance very strongly. Some aldermen are saying, `Hey, they're threatening us.' We're not. But isn't this how politics works?" Tom Balanoff asked. He's president of Service Employees International Union Local 1, one of the most influential labor leaders in the state, with some 32,000 workers.

"We're using the aldermanic schools to help get our members active, to teach them how politics impacts their lives," Balanoff told me. "Quite frankly, there haven't been a lot of serious aldermanic races lately, and some aldermen don't take seriously the concerns of unions. I think they'll start taking things seriously."

SEIU is the primary funding source for the Wal-Mart Watch, an anti Wal-Mart web site. Alderman Joe Moore is a recent winner of Wal-Mart Watch's "Person of the Week" honor.

That honor was not overlooked by a resident of his ward, blogger Thomas Westgard, who added this comment on the thread dedicated to Moore's Person of the Week award:

Joe Moore is off-base with his Wal-Mart activities. He's been allowing himself to be used by national Democrats to throw these trial balloons up, Wal-Mart being one, his foie gras ban for another. These are distractions, as far as I'm concerned.

The problem is that he's been neglecting the basics at home. He screwed over a local group that was trying to provide local job training, dropped the ball on a threatened landfill on our lakefront, and uses his membership on the City's healthcare committee to accomplish jack squat. This ward is federally recognized as "medically underserved," and we have some of the least access to medical care in the City.

(My note...which is amazing, since Moore's ward is one of the most densely populated sections of Chicago.)
If Joe wants to fight with Wal-Mart, let him go ahead and do so, but he should tend to matters at home first. I keep a running watch on him and his crew at my blog.

But he's kept Chicago, except for one store, Wal-Mart free.

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Friday, July 21, 2006

Pam's Ode to Entitlement

A voice of sanity from New England, Pam of Blogmeister USA has written a parody song, "Ode to Entitlement."

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Klocek petition update

The Scholars for Peace in the Middle East (SPME) petition to reinstate Professor Thomas Klocek at DePaul continues to draw signatures, reaching the milestone of 1300 today. The broad range of respondents includes:

Cambridge University Professor David Abulafia, who says, "These are the methods of the Spanish Inquisition. Others can say whether they breach the US Constitution, but I am sure they do."

USN Lieutenant Haakon B. Dahl, who says, "Busted. Put him back, or accept the label of cowards."

Harvard Assistant Professor Selwyn Oskowitz, MD., who says, "The university is one sided in its action to appease one sector who were also not academic in what they pronounced.:

DePaul University Professor Morry Fiddler , who says, "If I'm not there for a colleague, then who will be there for me?"

DePaul Alumn Jennifer Moore, who says, "Professor Thomas Klocek was one of my favorite faculty members…The punishment he has gone through already is unjustified but in the eyes of those that know him will not damage this great educator's credibility."

New York University Associate Professor Dov Fried, who says, "As Joseph Welch said…Have you no sense of decency?"

Writer Paul Bogdanor "What kind of university fires Thomas Klocek (who defends Israel) while continuing to employ Norman G. Finkelstein (who defends Hezbollah and al-Qaeda)? "

And finally, Loyola student Jerome Bartholomew, who says, "Hey DePaul! God called, he wants his university back!"

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