Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Nice news on the Klocek-DePaul front

Professor Thomas Klocek, formerly of DePaul University, has filed a defamation suit against the university claiming that they manipulated his statements to make him look racist towards Palestinian students and bigoted against Muslims.

Judge Stuart Nudelman of the Illinois Circuit County Law Division Court agrees with Professor Klocek and is allowing the suit to move forward to a jury trial. Named defendants in the suit are Rev. Dennis Holtschneider, DePaul U.'s president and School for New Learning Dean Susan Dumbleton. Best of luck and Godspeed, Professor.

Father Holtschneider caved to Palestinian Muslim students as did Dean Dumbleton when they complained that Professor Klocek argued with them and said they were wrong.

Now, if you complain about a guy who says that we deserved the attacks on September 11, 2001, you're an evil person who constricts free speech. If you complain that obnoxious Palestinian students are being told to rethink their violent stands on Israel, you're fired. If you hold a bake sale with lower prices for minority students to protest preferential treatment in a society that strives to not make race an issue in education, you're run off of the campus. Rip into Republicans, orthodox Catholics, and anyone else who is more likely to pray than saw someone's head off with a knife, well, those people are fair game.

What the heck is Father Holtschneider thinking? Does he believe that letting a bunch of obnoxious students get away with condoning terrorist attacks on Israel is in line with Catholic teaching? The suicide bombings perpetrated by Palestinian political groups againstIsrael definitely does not fall into being supported by the "Just War" theory.

Has Father Holtschneider decided to coddle these students in hopes that they don't use violence on his campus? That's what it seems like to me.

Thanks to Thomas Cieselka for the information about the trial.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

The Blotter

This and the two articles before it are amusing. The article linked here says that ABC stands by a story that Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert is under investigation by the Department of Justice. The Department of Justice says that they aren't investigating him. ABC sticks by their story.

This reminds me of that old saying "Who are you going to believe? Me or your lying eyes?"

Time will tell if there's actually any subpoenas issued. Politics is just getting weirder and weirder as the mid-terms draw near.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

SJ-R.COM - Lawyer: Governor went too far

Something stinks here, guys. While I don't know her very well personally, having only dealt with her as a customer at her old sandwich shop, I really think something is off in the firing of Dawn DeFraties. My mother has worked with her on legislative issues that required a Representative and Senator to cooperate on the same issue during Dawn's days as a staffer for Senator Carol Moseley-Braun. From what I've heard, she's not the kind of person to willingly fix grades on CMS exams. If there was evidence of official misconduct, why didn't Ol' Blaggie go through the Attorney General?

Illinois state jobs are tough to get because they're not just political, they're almost hereditary. Why anyone would jeopardize such a secure job by fixing test grades just seems off. I'm going to give Dawn the benefit of the doubt on this one and stick with the idea of being innocent until proven guilty. If there's a confession of guilt or ironclad evidence, I'll expect the proper punishments to be given out. Until that happens, though, I can't believe she'd do something so out of character for her.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Check it out! Another post!

So, I've been hearing the folks at WBBM radio and CBS News nearly salivating over the news that GOP's numbers are low right now. It's pretty easy to remember what got the Republicans into office in 1994: fiscal responsibility, smaller government, and lower taxes. The Republican Party needs only to rededicate themselves to those ideals and they'll do better in the 2006 elections. How? Well, making sure your budget isn't loaded down with all kinds of discretionary spending while you're fighting a war is a sure way to help.

Gas prices are on their way up. Some folks will say that we need to feel pain at the pump before we change our ways and get rid of our evil baby-eating SUVs (or whatever they're saying is bad about SUVs these days), but I say they're wrong. Even the most efficient mass-transit system is not going to have the same feeling as being able to ease out on the highway under your own command. I do have what I think would be a more modest proposal than self-criticism at the pump. Why not break down the nation into various specialty fuel regions, and having folks buy flexible fuel engine-powered vehicles? Since ethanol doesn't travel well, use it only in ethanol-producing areas. The places that can generate enough waste products for biodiesel can switch to that. There's going to be a need for gasoline for the time being, like it or not. Long-haul vehicles like tractor-trailers will still need regular diesel and there will need to be enough supply of that, but careful regional uses of renewable fuels might help remove the fuel price woes. Honestly, I'd love to be able to switch my Tucson's engine to a flex-fuel or hybrid model. It's not so much that I care about the air we breathe as much as I'm a cheapskate. If I can get E-85 for a lower per gallon price, why not make the switch? And if I can use less of it, that means fewer trips to the pump. And for convenience stores, that may mean more chances of my purchasing an ungodly-huge cup of soda.

Speaking of gas, political pundit gasbag and comedian Bill Maher is having a show here in the Chicago area next month. If you've heard the radio ad, it's not just offensive, but it's also bad history. Here's a quote from the ad:
"Did you see all the black people at the 2000 Republican election? The last time the Republicans had that many blacks up on stage, they were selling them!"
Hmm... painting Republicans as racists AND getting history wrong. Maybe he should look at who ran those slave markets. I think they identified themselves as Democrats, Bill. Whose party had the anti-slavery platform? Oh, right, the Republicans. If you need to vent your spleen about how the GOP has beaten your favorite candidates, just come right out and say it.

Speaking of historical inaccuracies, Ron Howard has defended his desire to not put any disclaimers on his film, The DaVinci Code. Ron is correct that most people should realize that it's a work of fiction, but there are also people who should realize that the book "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion" is also a work of Czarist fiction from the late Russian empire. At the very least he could say something like "Dan Brown decided to drag the name of Opus Dei through the mud because people are intimidated by Latin words and it sounded all menacing and shadowy to the untrained ear. These same people find Latin to be a mysterious and thus scary language. People who don't have much education are an important part of our audience, assuming they can read this. We thought tapping into this easily-influenced group was a good idea, so we made a movie based on Mr. Brown's very fictional (though who are we to say it's not true in part?) book. Now sit down, shut up, and watch our movie." I think that would be a lot more honest even more than "This is a work of fiction."

That's about it from here. Take care.