Sunday, July 31, 2016

(Video) Clinton lies again about email scandal, claims she never sent classified info

As I blogged this morning, Hillary Clinton was a guest on Fox News Sunday. Watch her lie to host Chris Wallace as she peddles her claim that she never sent classified email on the flimsy third-rate email server she used while serving as Obama's secretary of state.

Clinton's campaign server has been hacked, as has the server of the Democratic Party.

Do you seriously think that her secretary of state server wasn't hacked as well?

How come Republican and Trump email servers are never hacked?

From Da Tech Guy blog: 1968 returns

The 1960s are back in a way. And that's not necessarily a good thing. From my weekly post at Da Tech Guy: 1968 returns.

(Video) Bernie supporters say they're voting for Trump

Despite the laurels thrown at the feet of Hillary Clinton by the mainstream media after the Democratic National Convention, not all is well with the Democrats.

Watch as Campus Reform interviews former supporters of Bernie Sanders who say they are voting from Donald Trump in November.

They are ready for Trump Autumn. Are you?

(Video) Hillary denies that Bill's speaking fees soared when she became secretary of state

True to her Chicago roots, Hillary Clinton is the pay-to-play candidate. Bill Clinton, for instance, made thirteen speeches where he collected $500,000 after he left the White House in 2001.

Eleven of those speeches were made while Hillary was secretary of state, Fox News' Chris Wallace pointed out to her this morning, and all were paid by foreigners.

That cash went to the slush fund known to the Clinton Foundation.

Trump Autumn is coming.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

After big Chicago tax hike, 18 aldermen avoid major property tax increase, 5 pay less

Chicago's South Side
Is it any wonder that ordinary people are fleeing Chicago?

From the Chicago Sun-Times:
Three of every four property owners in Chicago have been hit with higher property taxes this year, a Chicago Sun-Times analysis shows — often thousands of dollars more and in some cases in the Loop and surrounding hot neighborhoods twice what they were last year.

That’s the result of a perfect storm of higher property assessments from Cook County Assessor Joseph Berrios and Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s $318 million tax hike, passed to shore up the city’s shaky finances and boost police and fire pension funds that for years have been shortchanged.

Eighteen of the city's 50 aldermen — including Ald. Patrick O'Connor, the mayor’s City Council floor leader who rounded up the votes to pass the tax increase last fall — staved off the hefty tax hikes, shifting a total of $19,484 in taxes to other property owners. Those aldermen, including several whose wards have seen real estate prices skyrocket, did that by convincing Berrios or the Cook County Board of Review to lower the estimated value of their homes or apartments.

Five of those aldermen — including four who voted against the tax hike — owe less than they did last year, even as most of their constituents pay more, the Sun-Times found in an analysis of the 882,965 tax bills sent to Chicago landowners. Monday is the deadline to pay.
Donald Trump is right. The system is rigged. Particularly in Barack Obama's hometown of Chicago. Where Hillary Clinton was born.

The Rainmakers: Let My People Go-Go

Sacrilegious? Probably. But you forgive a lot with a great band like the Rainmakers, whose magnum opus "Government Cheese" needs to be heard more.

But today we're getting down with "Let My People Go-Go."

Related posts:

The Rainmakers: Government Cheese

The Rainmakers: Downstream

On this day in 1956: In God We Trust becomes national motto of the USA

Abilene KS mural in 2007
On July 30, 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed into law a joint congressional resolution that declared "In God We Trust" to be the national motto of the United States.

Eisenhower was a Republican. Congress was controlled by Democrats.

Yes, those were the good old days.

Related post:s

Ike, the military truck convoy, the Lincoln Highway, and Dixon, Illinois

The Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum

Friday, July 29, 2016

We can't trust them with our secrets: First DNC, now Hillary's campaign computers hacked

Of course it is likely that Hillary Clinton's third-rate email server she used while serving as Obama's secretary of state was hacked too.

We cannot trust Hillary Clinton or the Democratic Party with our nation's secrets.

From Reuters:
A computer network used by Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s campaign was hacked as part of a broad cyber attack on Democratic political organizations, people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

The latest attack, which was disclosed to Reuters on Friday, follows two other hacks on the Democratic National Committee, or DNC, and the party’s fundraising committee for candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives.

A Clinton campaign spokesman said in a statement late on Friday that an analytics data program maintained by the DNC and used by the campaign and a number of other entities "was accessed as part of the DNC hack."

"Our campaign computer system has been under review by outside cyber security experts. To date, they have found no evidence that our internal systems have been compromised," said Clinton campaign spokesman Nick Merrill.
Trump Autumn is coming. America, get ready.

Clinton campaign mgr dodges on Hillary's fault for failed Libya policy

When asked by Fox News' Bret Bair about Hillary Clinton's failed Libya policy, her campaign manager, Robby Mook, dodged culpability.

Democrats' nation: Economy grew only 1.2% in 2nd quarter

America, do you want four more years of tepid growth?

From Bloomberg:
The U.S. economy expanded less than forecast in the second quarter after a weaker start to the year than previously estimated as companies slimmed down inventories and remained wary of investing amid shaky global demand.

Gross domestic product rose at a 1.2 percent annualized rate after a 0.8 percent advance the prior quarter, Commerce Department figures showed Friday in Washington. The median forecast of economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for a 2.5 percent second-quarter increase.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

After 50 years of Democratic failure Detroit mayor touts turnaround at DNC

Southwest Detroit
Detroit last had a Republican mayor in 1962. Since then liberal Democrats destroyed what was once America's fourth-largest city. For the first time since 1850 Detroit isn't among the nation's twenty most populous cities.

Detroit's mayor for most of the 1960s was Jerome Cavanagh, who signed into law the calamitous commuter and municipal income taxes. His tepid response to the 1967 riots greatly accelerated the Motor City's decline. From 1974-1994 race-baiter Coleman Young, a former communist, dug Detroit's grave.

And the corrupt administration of Kwame Kilpatrick, who was forced to resign in 2008, kept the city buried. Kilpatrick is serving a 28-year prison sentence.

As National Review phrased it earlier this year, "And Detroit is what Democrats do."

Related posts:

(Video) Obama in "08 said he would "build new partnerships" to defeat terrorism

By any estimate terrorism has gotten worse under Barack Obama. But in his 2008 Democratic National Convention speech, while those styrofoam pillars looked on, the future Dear Leader promised that he would "build new partnerships" to defeat terror.

Obama failed.

Trump Autumn is coming.

(Video) Ex-Clinton campaign mgr embarrasses herself trying to explain Hillary flip-flops

Patti Solis Doyle managed Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign.

During a panel discussion about the '16 campaign, Doyle stammered and paused and said "um" and "uh" a lot while she attempted to make sense out of HRC's numerous flip-flops on positions, while blaming Bill Clinton for the candidate's problems.

2 dead and 2 wounded at Chiraq party over parking space, witness dies of asthma attack

Abandoned home in
the Back of the Yards
Chicago's abysmal finances--and rampant senseless violence--are the reason that the city's mayor, former Bill Clinton White House advisor and Obama chief-of-staff Rahm Emanuel is keeping a very role profile at the Democratic National Convention.

Here's the latest Chiraq carnage.

From ABC Chicago:
Two people were killed and two others were wounded in a shooting at a South Side party. A 16-year-old girl who witnessed the shooting suffered an asthma attack at the scene and later died.

The Cook County Medical Examiner's Office identified two of the people who died overnight: Jessica Williams, 16, of the 12000-block of South State Street and Denzel Childs, 25. Authorities did not release his address. The identity of the third victim, a 33-year-old woman, has not yet been released.

Police said a group of people was gathered in the 800-block of West 50th Place in Chicago's Back of the Yards neighborhood just before 12:20 a.m. Thursday. That's when someone walked up, fired several shots and ran away. The 33-year-old woman was shot in the neck. She was rushed to St. Bernard Hospital, where she was pronounced dead. Denzel Childs suffered several gunshot wounds to the neck, hand and chest. He was transported to Stroger Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Paula Griffin Golden, Childs' mother, said he was a father of two and that he was killed over a parking space someone wanted from him. She couldn't believe someone would take her son's life over something so petty.
One party guest told ABC Chicago that the Moes, a faction of the Black P Stone Nation street gang, were the shooters.

I hate to keep repeating myself, but Chicago has a street gang problem. Gun violence is just a symptom.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

(Video) Democrats boo at convention when fighting terrorism is mentioned

Whose side are the Democrats on?

When former Obama CIA director an Defense secretary Leon Panetta brought up the need to fight terrorism at the Democratic National Convention today--which was constantly discussed by Republicans at their gathering last week--the leftists booed.

The Islamic State declared war on us. The Dems don't care.

Young Chiraq mother shot to death hours after moving into new apartment

Yesterday Roseland woman moved to another violent Chiraq neighborhood, South Chicago, to another violent neighborhood, South Chicago yesterday. A few hours later she was a murder victim.

From ABC Chicago:
A young mother of two was shot to death on her son's 5th birthday on Chicago's South Side. The 23-year-old woman's family identified her as Africa Bass.

"What do I say to my nephew? I can't. My nephew is always going to remember that. His mama died on his birthday. You can't forget that," said Jovanna Jones, Bass' sister.

Police said she was walking in the 8700-block of South Burley Avenue around 12:05 a.m. Wednesday when someone in a black SUV shot her in the back. Her aunt, Sade Wilson, was walking with her through the Germano Millgate Apartments when she was shot. She said Bass was also shot in the chest.

"The shots came. We started running she turned around and she like, 'Sade, I've been hit.' She squeezed my hand. 'My niece don't do nothing,'" Wilson said.
It's believed that Bass was caught in street gang crossfire.

Remember: Street gangs are the the problem in Chiraq, gun play is only a symptom. And while I have tremendous sympathy for the slain mother, I have to ask, why is she walking on the streets of a dangerous neighborhood after midnight?

Representatives of the Black Lives Matter movement of course are busy pushing their leftist agenda instead of protesting the latest senseless Chicago shooting.

Related post:

(Photos) Abandoned homes of Chicago's violent Roseland neighborhood and my look back

Union members ditching Dems to vote for Trump

Even the left-wing Daily Beast feels compelled to report that some union members are fed up with the leftist shift of the Democratic Party.
David Kemper and his wife are union members and lifelong Democrats. But the Kempers and their 20-year-old son, Nicholas, are planning to vote for Donald Trump in November.

"Growing up we were very strong Democrats, but the Democrat party left us," David Kemper said, standing at the back of a Ted Cruz barbecue near the Republican National Convention in Cleveland last week. He had traveled from Minnesota to the RNC to be with Nicholas, who was an alternate Texas delegate for Trump.

When the Kempers vote for Trump, they'll be breaking with the leadership of their national unions, which have both endorsed Hillary Clinton for president. "I'm in the CWA, my wife is American Federation of Teachers, but we felt like the unions have left us, too," said David Kemper.

(Video) Bernie voters hate Hillary

Watch as Bernie Sanders supporters at the Occupy DNC camp explain why they won't vote for Hillary Clinton in November.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

(Video) Trump to VFW: Politicians rigged the system against you

Among the cruelest failure of the Obama administration is the scandal at America's VA hospitals.

Trump promises to fix the Veterans Administration and warns VFW members that the "same failed voices of the past" who rigged this system can't be trusted.

IL GOP Huffington Post writer quits committeeman post over Trump

Some stuff you can't make up.

Chris Ladd, a DuPage County, Illinois Republican precinct committeeman who has been writing for the Huffington Post since 2012, quit his post last week because of Donald J. Trump, the GOP presidential nominee.

Thanks for letting other Illinois Republicans where you stand. Oh, wait, you did that when you started writing for that leftist rag.

A majority of Illinois Republicans are duplicitous dirtbags, by the way. They played a role too in the decline and fall of the Land of Lincoln.

(Video) Sanders supporters chant "We trusted you" during Warren speech

Phony Native American Elizabeth Warren, the leftist that Donald Trump derisively calls Pocahontas, was heckled by Bernie Sanders supporters who chanted "We trusted you" during her Democratic National Convention speech last night.

Elderly French priest killed on altar by ISIS; Fremch PM says nation at war with ISIS

The priest was at the altar during morning mass. The church was reportedly on an Islamic State "hit list."

From the Daily Mail:
Francois Hollande says France is at war with ISIS after two Islamist knifemen butchered a French priest and left a nun fighting for her life before they were both shot dead by police in Normandy.

One of the men who stormed into the church in Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray near Rouen during mass was a local man, who was being monitored by electronic tag after being jailed for trying to join fanatics in Syria.

The 84-year-old priest, named as Jacques Hamel, had his throats cut while a nun is critically injured in hospital following the raid which saw five people held hostage by ISIS assailants shouting Allahu Akbar.

This afternoon it emerged that the murdered clergyman was deputising while the parish priest was on holiday. French authorities say they have arrested a third man in connection with the attack.
ISIS is at war with the United States too. Only Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton have not figured that out yet.

As for the slain priest, the Pope needs to declare him a martyr for the faith.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Ex-Chiraq HS hoops star murdered near alderman's office

Abandoned North Lawndale
The tragic daytime murder took place on the same block where Alderman Michael Scott (24th) has an office.

From the Chicago Sun-Times:
Jonathan Mills, a standout basketball player at North Lawndale and Southern Miss, was shot and killed on the West Side on Monday.

The 26-year-old was shot multiple times in the 4100 block of West Roosevelt Road at 1:27 p.m., according to Chicago Police. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

North Lawndale coach Lewis Thorpe was at the scene. "It's him," Thorpe said. "I'm looking at the body right now."

Mills, the father of two daughters, played with Southern Miss in the NCAA Tournament in 2012. After college, he played basketball overseas.
For decades North Lawndale has been one of Chicago's most violent neighborhoods.

Related post:

(Photos) Abandoned homes in Chicago's violent North Lawndale neighborhood

LeRose Coal ghost sign

Sometime last year a building in Chicago's West Pullman neighborhood was razed--and that structure had largely protect the LeRose Coal Company ghost sign at 123rd and Halsted from the elements.

The founder of LeRose Coal, Charlie LeRose, was a longtime sponsor of youth sports on Chicago's Far South Side.

Related posts:

Chiraq: 5 dead and at least 40 wounded over weekend

Abandoned home in Roseland
Thunderstorms and hot weather plagued Chicago this weekend, as did the usual dose of violence. During that weekend five people were shot to death, two on the Southwest Side, one in Englewood, and two others in Roseland, the site of my latest urban exploration blog post.

At least forty other people were wounded.

Last week during his acceptance speech, Republican presidential nominee Donald J. Trump said of the Chiraq carnage, "In the president's hometown of Chicago, more than 2,000 people have victims of shootings," which is something you won't hear about at the Democratic National Convention.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Why this conservative will miss Debbie Wasserman Schultz

Debbie Wasserman
Okay, yes, the headline is provocative, but I absolutely what I wrote up there.

Because of her obvious bias in pushing the flawed candidacy of the dishonest and corrupt Hillary Rodham Clinton--something that was exposed in the latest Wikileaks email release, US Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), the chair of the Democratic National Committee, was compelled to resign this afternoon. Her departure will be a distraction--a major one--as the Dem convention kicks off on Monday. And yes, it's a bigger deal than the alleged "plagiarism" by Melania Trump's speechwriter that the mainstream media obsessed about during last week's Republican National Convention.

Oh, but I've wandered away from my point. I will miss Wasserman Schultz because when she appears on television she is arrogant, inflexible, and deaf to criticism. In other words, just like the Democratic Party.

DWS is not a polished turd like most other Democratic Party mouthpieces. But she's the real deal--and I'm going to miss pointing at her and yelling to Democrats, "There she is! You are her and she is you!"

Another turd will take her place. A polished one, to be sure.

From Da Tech Guy: Trump does right thing by addressing urban issues in acceptance speech

Where else could I turn for my weekly post at Da Tech Guy? Of course I have to cover last week's Republican National Convention: Trump does right thing by addressing urban issues in acceptance speech.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

(Video) Wikileaks reveals that Democratic Party was out to get Sanders

Donald Trump is right. The government is rigged--the system is rigged. And what's more, the Democratic Party is rigged, as the latest release from Wikileaks proves.

And Bernie Sanders is right. The allegedly neutral Democratic Party apparatus was pulling for Hillary Clinton.

As for Trump, yes, Republican leaders almost to a person opposed him. But they didn't rig the primary and caucuses so he'd lose.

Clearly Hillary, not Trump, is the candidate of the party bosses.

More from Fox News:

(Video) Styx: Caught in the Act

Earlier this week, after two month respite, I posted my first Chicago urban exploration entry in two months, this one was about Roseland, the Far South Side Chicago neighborhood where I spent my early childhood.

Styx, one of the biggest rock bands to come out of Chicago, emerged from Roseland. Outside of its late drummer, John Panozzo, who would occasionally drop in on friends in Palos Heights who lived across the street from a pal of mine, I never met any of the members of the band.

Every Saturday I post a musical entry. I'm going to deviate a bit for some 1980s kitsch, the Styx two-part video of Caught in the Act, which was shown before its concerts during the band's tour to promote its album, Kilroy Was Here.

The synthesizer-infused work was largely a project of its de facto leader, Dennis DeYoung. The band broke up after "Kilroy," but reformed later--without DeYoung.

Here is part one:

Followed by part two:

In this last one, DeYoung sings "Mr. Roboto."

DeYoung plays Kilroy, Robert Orin Charles Kilroy, R.O.C.K, get it?

What did I say about kitsch?

Related post:

(Photos) Abandoned homes of Chicago's violent Roseland neighborhood and my look back

(Photo) Old used car dealership shack

At one time all you needed to open a used car dealership--okay, I'm over-simplifying a bit, was a shack, such as this one for Ben's Auto sales at 101st Place and Michigan in Chicago's Roseland neighborhood.

The cars are gone. The one-time-special-offers have long expired. But the shack remains. Oh, and an old telephone pole.

Related posts:

Friday, July 22, 2016

Hillary picks old white guy to be running mate

Yes, my headline is provocative. But in the eyes of many voters--most of them under forty--Donald Trump chose an old white guy, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence to be his running mate.

Earlier this week two Saturday Night Live performers asked pedestrians in Cleveland to pick out Trump's running mate among a group of photographs of older white men. Among the choices, besides Pence, was Playboy founder Hugh Hefner and serial child rapist Jerry Sandusky.

As Nelson Muntz, a Simpsons character likes to say, "Haw haw."

I'll bet you Hillary Clinton's net worth that the SNL hacks won't be putting on the same stunt in Philadelphia, where the Democratic National Convention will be held next week, with Clinton's choice to be her running mate, Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia, an-old-white-guy just like Pence.

Trump Autumn is coming. I'm ready. Are you?

Jihadi kills nine in Germany

These deadly radical Islamic attacks are becoming a weekly occurrence. It seems that the only people who don't think the West is at war are leftists.

Yes, they will eventually ascertain the truth, but perhaps not until some jihadi screaming "Allahu akbar" breaks down the front door of their homes and starts shooting.

From the Daily Mail:
Police are investigating a fake Facebook advert which offered free food at the McDonald's where a gunman killed the first of his nine victims.

Munich was in lockdown for a major police operation around the city's Olympic Park, after the 18-year-old Iranian opened fire at the fast food restaurant, before targeting shoppers in a busy mall in the district of Moosach.

The killer's body has been found half a mile from the scene after he reportedly turned the gun on himself. Police now believe he may have acted alone, after they initially went in search of three gunmen yesterday.

And at a press conference at 2.30am local time today, Munich Police President Hubertus Andrae confirmed the force were probing a Facebook page which was offering free food at the McDonald's at the same time the gunman began his shooting spree.

Prairie coneflowers with Google effects

Look what Google Effects did to these prairie coneflowers that I photographed last month.

NBA All Star game pulls out of Charlotte because of same-sex bathroom bill

A quick glance at most of the stories about the National Basketball Association taking its All Star game out of Charlotte next year and you'll think it's because North Carolinians hate gays and have no problem discriminating against them.

Here's the real story: North Carolina passed a bill that confirmed the social precedent of the last 150 years or so, in other words, as long as there have been public bathrooms. Men use the men's room and Women use the women's room, regardless of the gender people think they are.

But the Gay Mafia, which as the ears of President Obama and his leftist followings, had a fit after the Tar Heel State enacted its bathroom bill. The NBA, not wishing to offend the GM and the .001 percent of the population that wants to change genders, announced yesterday that next year's All Star game will not be held in Charlotte.

Before the new Charlotte Hornets they were the Bobcats. I attended a game there. There were men's rooms, women's rooms, but no "whatever" rooms.

And no one was angry.

This was just four years ago.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

(Video) Newt at the RNC

Newt Gingrich, who is truly a great voice for conservatism and America, praised both the Republican Party and its 2016, Donald J. Trump.

It was a powerful speech--and a needed antidote to Ted Cruz's flame-out non-endorsement of this year's GOP standard bearer.

Trump Autumn is coming. Newt is ready.

(Video) Huckabee rips Cruz's "absolutely dishonorable moment"

Last night at the Republican National Convention Ted Cruz was given the opportunity to be a statesmen during his prime time address, when he could have endorsed the Republican nominee, who is of course Donald Trump.

But Cruz took the low road and didn't. Mike Huckabee said on Fox Nes this morning that is was an "absolutely dishonorable moment" for the Texas senator.

Big wing rims on an old car

The badging was removed from this 1980s vintage car, so I was unable to identify the make and model.

Is is a Cadillac? A Buick?

But look at these wheels! Two spoke chrome rims, I believe they are called wings.

The old luxury car was parked in the ugly, bombed-out shopping strip on Michigan Avenue just south of 111th Street in Chicago's Roseland neighborhood.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

(Photo) Not quite the Trump Train

A Union Pacific locomotive roared past me during today's morning run in Morton Grove.

It's not the Trump Train, but it will do for me.

(Video) Christie lists the charges against #CrookedHillary

Last night at the Republican National Convention New Jersey governor Chris Christie laid down the charges against the presumptive Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, or as Donald Trump calls her Crooked Hillary.

(Video) Trump addresses convention after winning nomination

After becoming the Republican Party's nominee, and becoming the first non-politician to become the choice of a major party since the great Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1952, via video Donald Trump addressed his party's convention, where he predicted victory.

Trump Autumn is coming.

Trump Jr: If elected Hillary "Would be the first president who couldn't pass a basic background check"

Donald Trump Jr. gave a knock-out speech at the Republican National Convention. One great part was when the younger Trump said that if Hillary Clinton somehow becomes president, she "would be the first president who couldn't pass a basic background check."

Americans, we can prevent a Hillary presidency by voting for Republican nominee Donald J. Trump.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Chiraq: South Side 6-year-old critically wounded in drive-by

View from inside an abandoned
West Englewood home
And where are the protests from Black Lives Matter?

From Fox Chicago:
A stray bullet hit a 6-year-old girl who was sitting on her front porch Tuesday afternoon in the West Englewood neighborhood, leaving her in critical condition.

As Tacarra Morgan sat with her mom and grandmother on the front steps of her grandparents’ home in the 6000 block of South Paulina Street about 1 p.m., a shooting began to unfold a block north.

Someone in a white sport utility vehicle opened fire on a group of people standing in the 5900 block of South Paulina, CPD First Deputy Supt. John Escalante said from the scene of the crime.

Several people from the targeted group began running south. The shooter from the white SUV pursued the group and again opened fire.
It was during this second incident of gunfire when the little girl was shot.

Kansas City, Kansas cop shot to death

Remember: When cops show up to work they know they may not survive their shift.

From AP:
An officer with the Kansas City, Kansas Police Department died Tuesday after he was shot in his car as he approached people matching the description of suspects in an earlier shooting.

Capt. Robert Melton was brought to the University of Kansas Hospital just before 2:30 p.m., but resuscitation efforts did not work, trauma surgeon James Howard said at a Tuesday afternoon news conference.

“There’s a lot of pain and brokenness in our community and our nation right now, and we just want to ask everyone to be prayerful and thoughtful right now,” Mayor Mark Holland of the Unified Government of Wyandotte County said.

Melton had responded to a report of person being shot at by several people in a vehicle, the police department said in a news release. When he and other officers arrived on the scene, the three or four occupants of the car jumped out and ran away.

Chiraq: 2 dead and 13 wounded Monday; 2 shot on expressway

West Englewood
Monday was another bloody day in Chicago.

Two males were fatally shot yesterday, one in the West Englewood neighborhood on the South Side and the other in West Garfield Park neighborhood on the West Side. The West Sider was 17-years-old. Thirteen others were wounded, including two men riding in a car on the Dan Ryan Expressway on the South Side.

So far there are no reports of Black Lives Matter protesting Monday's mayhem.

ISIS claims responsibility for madman's axe attack in Germany

Surprised? You shouldn't be.

But was the maniac part of Angela Merkel's "Class of 2015" of refugees?

From ABC News:
The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for an attack onboard a train in Germany Tuesday that left three people seriously injured, according to the terrorist group's news agency.

The announcement comes hours after a 17-year-old Afghan refugee attacked passengers with an axe and a knife. He was shot and killed during an altercation with police after fleeing the scene, a Bavarian police spokesman told ABC News.

The three injured are in serious condition, one is less serious, and 14 others were being treated for shock, according to the spokesman.

Police said the incident occurred on a local train heading towards Würzburg at Heidingsfeld, in Bavaria.

#DishonestMedia talking about Melania's "plagiarism" to distract from Benghazi victim mother's speech

Last night at the Republican National Convention Melania Trump, who is not an experienced public speaker, or a lawyer like Michelle Obama, gave a pretty good speech about child-rearing and the future. It was high on platitudes and low on specifics.

Also addressing the convention was Patricia Smith, whose son was killed in the Benghazi attack. Smith, who is also not experienced in speaking in public, recounted how Hillary Clinton lied to her when she said that said that spontaneous fury from a Z-list YouTube video was behind the attack at our consulate in the Libyan city. But beforehand Obama's secretary of state emailed her daughter and explained to her that Benghazi was a planned terror attack.

But the lying media, to which having a Republican president is an anathema, is pushing a flimsy story that the generalizations in Ms. Trump'c convention speech is "plagiarism" because it covered some of the same topics in Michelle Obama's 2008 Democratic National Convention address.

The mainstream media needs to be replaced.

#AlwaysTrump. Never the #DishonestMedia.

Teen Afghan refugee killed after attacking German train passengers with axe

It's unclear if the maniac is among the one million refugees admitted into Germany by Prime Minister Angela Merkel.

From AFP:
A 17-year-old Afghan refugee wielding an ax and a knife attacked passengers on a train in southern Germany on Monday evening, severely wounding four, before he was shot dead by police, the interior minister for the state of Bavaria said.

Speaking on German public television, Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann said it was too early to speculate about the motives of the attacker, who he said was believed to have been living in a home for unaccompanied minors in Ochsenfurt, near the city of Wuerzburg.

The attack comes just days after a Tunisian delivery man plowed a 19-tonne truck into crowds of Bastille Day revelers in the southern French city of Nice, killing 84.
"The attacker appears to have been a 17-year-old Afghan who has been living in Ochsenfurt for some time," Herrmann said. "He suddenly attacked passengers with a knife and an axe, critically injuring several. Some of them may now be fighting for their lives."
Some reports claim that the refugee was screaming "Allahu Akbar" as he swung his axe.

Monday, July 18, 2016

(Photos) Abandoned homes of Chicago's violent Roseland neighborhood and my look back

"For now we see through a glass, darkly."
1 Corinthians 13:12

My next stop in my urban exploration series brings me home. Well, to my first home. Roseland on Chicago's Far South Side. Mention Roseland to a person of the right age and two words usually come out: white flight.

Roseland's boundaries are bit nonsensical now, as the building of I-57, the Dan Ryan Expressway, and the Bishop Ford Expressway and have dissected the neighborhood. Roughly its northern border is the Chicago and Western Indiana Railroad tracks on the north, the Metra Electric on the east, Eggleston--up to 103rd street on the west and then Halsted, and 115th Street on the south.

Over the last 30 days Roseland ranks 19th in violent crimes among Chicago's 77 designated community areas.

Visitors to the location of my last urban exploration piece, the Pullman National Monument, will receive an unpleasant greeting if they wander west under the Metra tracks when they see this large abandoned apartment building at Vernon and 110th Place.

A block away is a tiny grocery store, one of those places where the cashier is positioned behind bullet-proof glass. I took a picture outside of the place, not a very good one, and some jerk hollered at me, "Why are you taking pictures?" Well, why not? Here's a warning to the twenty-or-thirty-so tourists who visit Pullman every day--stay out of Roseland. This is the part of Chicago known as the Wild 100s. More on this area later.

Our next stop a two-story brick home at 9601 S. Princeton that, based on what is left of the For Sale sign, didn't sell. While taking this picture I met a man who was on photo duty for a bank that just foreclosed on a home. The Great Recession continues to drag on in Chicago. He's black--I'm white, he said that I "need to be careful here." But this is a nice part of Roseland.

Two blocks from this battered dwelling is the Princeton Park section of Roseland, which has always been majority black. Built in 1944 during the World War II housing shortage where probably the last farm in Roseland sat.

Before it was annexed by Chicago the Dutch were the first Europeans to live in large numbers in Roseland. Farmers mostly, these Hollanders were. And while it's generally a misnomer to call Dutch people Hollanders, the first Rosleand settlers came from Eenigenburg, which is in the Holland province of the Netherlands. Over 100 years later when I putt-putting around the Fernwood section of Roseland in my little red fire wagon the Dutch were a distinct but vocal minority; Irish, Lithuanians, Italians, and Scandinavians overwhelmed the neighborhood years before. But there was an imperiousness about the Roseland Dutch that I recall even as a six-year-old. My mother recently reminded me of the saying I'd hear, "If you ain't not Dutch, you ain't much." And they meant it--their haughtiness went far beyond ethnic pride. These Dutch Reformed Calvinists were the elect--and you weren't. What did that mean to little boy like myself? I remember being told my parents and my brothers, "He won't play with you--he's Dutch." And that was largely true. The Hollander children for the most part were instructed by their parents to stay away from kids like myself--after all, I was allowed to play on Sunday--after going to church. And I could watch television on Sunday. Older children and teens would participate in competitive sports on the Sabbath--Roseland had a top-notch Little League Baseball program--and go to dances and enjoy other frivolities, but not the Dutch. Oh, dancing was to be avoided at all times by them.

This was their thinking: Dutch parents did not want their kids complaining to them, "How come John Ruberry can go to Ferwnood Park on Sunday and I can't?" Or, "How come we have to go church twice on Sunday and other families go just once?" It was best for children to avoid these non-elect troublemakers so these uncomfortable conversations would be infrequent.

If you think I'm being to harsh on the Dutch--or if you are enjoying this Dutch-bashing--then stick around for the exclamation point.

Roseland is graced by many Chicago-style bungalows, such as this abandoned one at 316 W. 100th Street.

We've now crossed a set of railroad tracks into the aforementioned Fernwood section of Roseland, the best part of the neighborhood then and now. That's the old Ruberry house at 10536 S. Eggleston--but we lived on one of the more modest streets in Fernwood.

Up above is Mother Marathon Pundit, on Easter perhaps, with my oldest brother sometime around 1967.

My family moved to Palos Heights a dozen miles to the southwest in 1968. My parents never felt comfortable in Roseland and we had outgrown this bungalow--there were seven of us packed into a three bedroom house. Blockbusting, also known as panic-peddling, had already begun in Roseland, the concept was beyond the understanding of a kindergartner, but I heard from older kids that "the negroes were coming." Sometimes that other word was used. When my folks bought this place in 1959 their plan was to save up enough money until they could afford a home in the more desirable South Shore neighborhood to the east--where my father grew up. But white flight had come to South Shore too around the same time and my parents sold the bungalow, which as it was for almost all families at the time, their biggest investment, at a loss.

A year later integration, such as it was, came to most of Roseland and the change did not go smoothly. Some blocks went from being all white to all black in six months. That's why it was called white flight. The anger from the assassination of Martin Luther King and the riots that followed were the harbinger of a painful era in American race relations. At my elementary school in Palos I regularly would meet kids who moved from Roseland or the neighboring West Pullman neighborhood, they told me stories of being chased home from school every day by blacks. These were nine and ten-year-olds.

Even Fernwood has forsaken homes, such as this one at 10519 South Lowe.

I don't know the contemporaneous side of the story from blacks as the grade school, middle school, and high school I attended had no African-American students. I can only guess. Perhaps their parents, each of whom suffered the sting of institutional racism, told their children that white people had it too good for too long and now it was time for payback. Or maybe when there were few African Americans in Roseland the blacks were chased home from school by whites every day.

The Fernwood Park Race Riot of 1947 was a fresh memory for most adults then--three days of rioting occurred when a few black World War II veterans moved into a Chicago Housing Authority project on the western edge of Roseland. Does anyone seriously believe that the vastly outnumbered blacks started the riot? The Chicago Police, as was the case through the 1960s, routinely sided with whites.

Because what happened in Roseland in the late 1960s is an unhappy story, this is a largely forgotten part of American history. Parents, whose ultimate responsibility is to protect their children, were forced to sell their homes. Or you could fairly say they were compelled to flee. Things didn't go well for the new black residents either. More on that in a little bit.

Around this time of South Side racial upheaval, the Kinks released their then-ignored masterpiece, The Village Green Preservation Society, which included the song "Big Sky," which neatly summarizes the narrative so far.
Big Sky looked down on all the people looking up at the big sky,
Everybody's pushing one another around.
Big Sky feels sad when he sees the children scream and cry,
But the Big Sky's too big to let it get him down. 
Quadrophenia from a few years later by The Who sold much better--this snippet from "Helpless Dancer" captures some of the rage of that time:
And you get beaten up by blacks
Who though they worked still got the sack.

Now it's time to head back east over those tracks--the wrong side of them--to the worst part of Rosleand, the Wild 100s--the Far South Side version of Englewood.

This "red X" home is near the corner of 107th and State.

Many of the Roseland homes purchased during the blockbusting era were financed by FHA-insured mortgage loans, but many of the new homeowners couldn't afford the monthly payments. The lenders still got their money but the federal government was the owner of many now-abandoned homes, and the credit of these new Roselanders was ruined. And property values in Roseland plummeted again. Liberal social engineering has painful consequences. And the FHA Loan Scandal of the late 1960s and early 1970s is has been swept under the rug by the guilty and their protectors.

In 1972 my siblings and I convinced our father to take us to see our old home on Eggleston after attending a White Sox game. We were unprepared for what followed. One-third of the homes on our old block were boarded up--including our beloved old bungalow. Each of these vacant houses had orange signs with black lettering which read, "Federal government property--stealing from this house is stealing from you." I'm not a believer in single events--outside of traumatic ones--reshaping a person's psyche, but if you had to point out a moment in my life that made me a conservative--this is it.

There was an uncomfortable silence as my father drove us out of Roseland back to Palos Heights.

I'm certain the financial toll of this debacle in remaking communities has never been calculated. But as I mentioned earlier, historians aren't interested in stories like this one. Which is why I'm telling it because no one else wants to, and as the years pass, few will even be able to do so.

American Four Square homes are rare in Chicago but rather common elsewhere in the Midwest. It appears this one on 107th Street may be gone soon and Chicago will have one less of them.

Six years ago Roseland, mostly because of the Wild 100s section--was the most dangerous part of Chicago. It's possible that other areas of "Chiraq" have gotten far worse and Roseland has merely stabilized. Of my urban exploration adventures so far I've only been more anxious in North Lawndale. Thomas Wolfe was right, you can't go home again.

I'm repeatedly warned by loved ones that I'm foolish to enter these dangerous neighborhoods--unarmed. But I take precautions. While walking past this abandoned frame home on Perry Street an obese man his his 20s wearing an Indianapolis Colts shirt began yelling "Hey buddy, hey buddy" in a menacing tone of voice while running towards me. I turned around and walked slowly away. It's fortunate he was a fat guy because he didn't run very fast.

Oh, here's a crucial urban-ex tip: When being pursued, always keep a consistent pace and never show fear. And always have an exit route planned.

That exit route took me into an alley past what I believe was a garage, then back on to 107th Street where I was just an anonymous, albeit Caucasian, face in the crowd. I continued to walk east, to Michigan Avenue, not the fancy shops north of downtown, but to what was once a South Side thriving shopping district.

By the early 1980s Roseland struggled once again with economic turmoil. The 1981-1983 recession hit the Great Lakes States hard. Things got so bad that a group of Roseland and West Pullman Roman Catholic Churches, including the one where I was baptized, formed the Calumet Community Religious Conference, which was run by followers of leftist Chicagoan Saul Alisnky, who died in 1972. But none of these activists were black--so they hired Barack Obama, who was living in New York at the time. Obama chose not to live on the Far South Side when he arrived in the city, he chose the Hyde Park neighborhood, home of the University of Chicago.

Obama eventually ran the Developing Communities Project, which chose a shuttered department store on Michigan Avenue for his headquarters. Gately's People Store, pictured above, could have been that place. It closed its doors in 1981, thirty-five years later the decrepit long-unlit neon sign is still there.

It was at Gately's where I first met Santa Claus.

Among Obama's goal's at DCP was to retrain blue collar workers who lost their jobs during the early 1980s recession and reinvigorate the region, and of course, organize the community and whatever that entails.

But other than advancing his career, which of course brought him to the White House, Obama's endeavors in Roseland ended in failure. I mean c'mon now, look at the place!

Once a bustling retail side street, 112th Street sits forlorn.

If you think Democratic social engineering is over, than you are quite naïve. I suggest that you read about how Dubuque, Iowa is being forced to accept Chicago Section 8 housing applicants because Obama's HUD sees it as part of its Chicago region.

You thought I forgot about the Dutch. On the corner of 107th and Michigan stands a spectacular-looking old Dutch Reformed Church. (Sorry, no pics, the sun was at a bad angle.) It was sold to a black congregation in 1971, becoming the Lilydale Progressive Baptish Church. The Hollanders left with a Parthian shot by taking the church's cornerstone with them. Not even Detroit's avowedly racist Temple Baptist stooped that low when it sold its church to a black Baptist group.

From the Kinks' "Black Messiah."
Everybody talking about racial equality
'Cos everybody's equal in the good Lord's eyes
But if I told you that God was black
What would you think of that
I bet you wouldn't believe it.

Chicagoland Board Up is not lacking for business in Chicago.

The Rosemoor section of Rosleand is dominated by vacant lots. Picture above is a soon-to-be what we called back in the day "prairie" at 101st and Michigan.

"He grew up a small-town boy which used to be possible in the big city," that's what Pulitzer Prize winning columnist Mike Royko said about Mayor Richard J. Daley, who ruled Chicago during from 1955-1976 in his best-selling book Boss. But by the 1960s most families in Chicago owned a car, sometimes two, but there that village feel in Roseland remained. Everybody knew who lived in every house on the block where you lived. I was much more of a small-town boy in the city than was I was in the suburbs.

When I arrived in Palos Heights in '68 I was overwhelmed by the quietude of my new suburban life. Yes, Roseland was in its own way was a small town, but it was a cacophonous one. Kids weren't allowed to ring door bells, I yelled "Yo Russell....can you come out and play" outside a friend's house. The reply might have been screamed back at me by a parent, "Come back later, John, we're having dinner!" Or, "Go away, it's past your bedtime!" Baseball was played on the street, when an automobile approached the participants would howl, "Car!" Often the annoyed driver would honk back.

Children growing up in such a place are compelled to process information quickly. Old Roseland is gone, but it never left me. If you need evidence, this post--and my work at Marathon Pundit--is your proof. I weave seemingly unconnected subjects together into a body of work that makes sense. Well, at least to me and some of my readers it does. In this single entry I cover politics, rock music, neighborhood history, architecture, and boyhood recollections.

Now that the memory-hole is wide open, my mind is dominated by the ethereal images of the Big Snow of 1967, playing in places where I wasn't allowed to, such as the Roseland Pumping Station, the smartass greasers, middle-aged men in white tank-top shirts and women in house dresses sitting on front porches every summer evening, the tinker and his knife-sharpening wheel, and of course the racket of the city populate my mind as I conclude this post.

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