Moving From Our Roots: “Oh You New York Girls Can’t You Change The Country.”

NY GirlsMy Fourth of July post set out how the Declaration of Independence was basically a Protestant document written by white men that established our nation. The men who wrote it had no problem talking about God and the calling upon His protection for their planned attempt to break free from the rule of the British king. For most of our history up until over two-thirds of the way through the 20th Century the country continued that tradition.

The recent Supreme Court decision on gay marriage and other  recent 5 – 4 decisions which went in a liberal direction show that no longer do white men control the destiny of the country. Off  we go into the wide blue yonder when things that have happened for over two hundred years are suddenly changed.  We got to where we are today based upon them; what will guide us into the future?

The decisions from the Supreme Judicial Court are coming from a majority of judges who are not white males. Three judges who make up the majority in the  5 – 4 liberal decisions that are now setting the laws for this country are women. This is a sea change in our nation’s history. It never happened before. Yet it seems to have passed with little notice. Whether this will be a good or bad thing remains to be seen but it is a course that will be new to us.

Trump’s Trumped, Chattanooga Mystery, Olympic Follies, and the Big Holiday

(1) a amrine flagIcarus, Donald, think Icarus! You couldn’t keep that big mouth shut. You liked those polls having you leading among sixteen others. It felt good being at the top of a field of plenty. You were king of the hill.

Hubris, Donald, think hubris. That was Icarus’s downfall. Your old man’s money (300 million) got you a deferment for a bone  spur in one of your feet (you forget which on) Your snide remark that the idea in war is not to be captured makes us think of how you ensured you won’t be captured by not serving.

Hero, Donald, think hero. John McCain is really a hero. He flew combat missions over Vietnam. With his pull (old man and grandfather were Navy admirals) he could have sat back at the Pentagon. He was being tortured in prison camp and had a chance to get out before the others but choose to stay until all got out. Could you see your pampered self doing that Donald?

Quit, Donald, think quit. Your big mouth has made you toast. You are sinking faster than Icarus whose wings melted; even faster than McCain’s plane after it was hit with a North Vietnam missile. You’ve become another Charlie Bratton, a mouth that has run away from its brain. You trumped yourself by talking too much and too loud and too foolishly. You won’t be missed.

The FBI’s Arrest of Alexander Ciccolo: Tainting A Good Job

Ciccolo GunsI had a discussion the other day about the matter involving Boston Police Captain Robert Ciccolo’s son Alexander age 23 who was arrested on July 4, 2015, by the FBI. There is little doubt that Alexander was a clear and present danger to the public and should have been deprived of an opportunity to effectuate his dastardly plans. I think we can all agree on that and for that we can be thankful that the FBI did make the arrest.

What bothered me about the incident are a couple of things. First, my heart goes out to Captain Ciccolo. As a parent I have always kept in mind that at some point the child you nurture and love is going to go off and make decisions for himself (or herself).  How hard it must be to see that child become incapable of making rational decisions because of a mental illness over which one has no control. It is difficult to imagine the torment he, his wife and family have gone through. We read that his son has been estranged from the family for years; but as we know from the parable of the prodigal son there is always hope for a change. How gut wrenching then must Captain Ciccolo’s decision have been to tell the FBI that he thought his son was a potential terrorist threat knowing that in doing that he probably had forfeited any chance of reconciliation with the family.

The Black Hole Into Which Everything Disappears. FBI Judging Its Own Conduct

Woman cryingClose to the worst words that can be heard in an open society is that a secretive organization responsible only to itself is investigating something. The absolute worst words are that it is investigating its own actions. How difficult it must be to do that in an upright manner? How strange in a democracy with its checks and balances one group remains unaffected by or responsible to any others? How dangerous is it that it is a police force?

I wrote the other day how the FBI alerted law enforcement agencies around the country that terrorist attacks were planned for the Fourth; nothing happened. The FBI Director took credit for that. He said it broke up those planned attacks with over ten arrests. He refused to tell us anything more. The one person he mentioned had nothing planned for the Fourth.

No one holds him accountable. He does not have to back up his statements. We have no one, even a group of top Americans with the highest security clearance, that can learn any more than what the FBI wants to dole out.

FBI Up To Its Old Tricks! Sad To See Little Has Changed

shell gameSuppose you’ve invested heavily in stock of Redapple.  Its CEO Bill Chicklets says the company expects bang-up results for the fourth quarter ending June 30. On July 1 he holds a conference call to discuss them. He announces that they had a  record  quarter. When he is questioned he adds that he won’t release any figures and or discuss how specific products are selling. “You have to trust me,” Bill says. “We are doing what we should be doing.”

Do you think the financial analysts would but that? Would you feel your investment is well placed? Or, would you wonder a little bit at what is going on at Redapple?

That is sort of what happened at the show put on the other day by FBI Director James Comey. It is reported he called the media in on July 9 to announce“that federal authorities disrupted an undisclosed number of suspected plots timed to the July Fourth holiday to “kill people in the United States.” All of the plots, Comey said, involved suspects associated with the Islamic State terror group. The director said more than 10 people have been arrested in the past four weeks on charges related to their association with ISIL, and some of those involved plans timed to July Fourth. He went on to say: “I do believe that our work disrupted efforts to kill people, likely in connection with July 4th.” (my emphasis)

DA Marion Ryan’s Harebrain Plan to Try Dzhokhar Tsarnaev!

hare_2074103iGarret Byrnes was the District Attorney in Suffolk County from 1952 until 1978. Like all district attorneys he would have to run for re-election every four years. He knew that most people have no idea who is their DA or what county they live in. He recognized the value of good publicity. A month or so before an election he would have the Boston police conduct a big bookie raid. This would get him enough publicity to make it look like he was doing something against organized crime and to ensure his reelection.

Another example of a DA ginning up publicity before an election was when Bill Keating was the DA of Norfolk County. He was running for Congress when Amy Bishop a biology professor at the University of Alabama in Huntsville gunned down three co-workers early in 2010. It seemed that in 1968 in Braintree, Bishop had also killed her brother with a shotgun which had been ruled accidental. Keating reopened that investigation, garnered all the publicity and indicted her for murder in June 2010, three months before his election. He knew he would never have to try the case since he would not be DA after that fall; he also knew that she’d be convicted of the three murders in Alabama; and that she’d never be brought back here for trial. DA Mike Morrissey was elected DA in Norfolk to replace him. After her Alabama convictions he showed his wisdom in getting rid of the Norfolk murder charge against Bishop.

A Step Back From War: Netanyahu’s Big Misstep

(7) NetanyahuNetanyahu is sort of a tough guy who acts like he cannot be pushed around. He will do anything to stay in office as we saw with his stunt prior to the last election. He’s a “my way or the highway type guy.” He’s not happy listening to opinions that run counter to what he is thinking.

He has probably been in office too long for his own good and the good of Israel. He has not changed as the world has.  He has kept himself in power by sowing fear and portraying himself as the one person who can protect Israel.

His biggest supporter is a guy from Dorchester, MA, named Sheldon Adelson. He’s another tough guy who clawed and chewed his way to riches by working hard, starting one business after the other, never-resting until he finally hit the jackpot when he  involved himself in the gambling business buying the Sands Hotel in Las Vegaa and gambling casinos in other parts of the world.

Adelson also owns at least three newspapers in Israel which command over 50% of the Israeli readership. These all fervently support Netanyahu.

The Boston Follies: The Planned Rape of the Public Treasury

(~) swan lakeThink of the Big Dig; add in Annie Dookhan; on top of that consider our crumbling justice, failing school, clogged highway and decrepit public transit systems; consider our penchant for looting the public payroll and look at the gang of characters who are flirting and stirring about around the edges of this grandiose scheme and you’ll understand why an Olympics in Boston is best described as the Boston Follies. It looks now like it will be a massive taking of our public money.

Our city has so many things wrong with it at the present time that the Olympics idea is just a highfalutin plan to distract us from our present woes. We are being beguiled with an imaginary future brave new city to turn our attention away from the rotten core. Our aim should be to improve the present and not be dazzled by the future.

We hear of Olympic budgets as if the Big Dig never happened. The original estimate for it in 1982 was to have it completed in 1998 at a cost of 2.8 billion; it was completed at the end of 2007 – 9 years behind schedule at a cost of over 14 billion. Estimates are that the total cost will be 22 billion when interest and other matters are considered.  Some suggest that using inflation adjusted dollar amounts the final cost was only double that of the original estimate.