Friday, October 26, 2018

The Decline and Fall of the American Republic - Actors and Political Power

The first actor activist to appear in a starring role in American history was John Wilkes Booth.  He was the Resistance after Little Mac lost 1864 election to the Donald Trump of 19th Century divided America.  The man was an activist and shot Lincoln, stabbed Major Henry Rathbone when he attempted to stop the assassination, leaped to the stage of the Ford Theatre and shouted " Sic Semper Tyrannis!"  Michael Moore could not have staged it better.

Actors were considered social pariahs generally in the mid-19th Century: drunks, sexual predators, lay-abouts and spongers.  With exceptions of the few matinee idols, like Edwin and his brother Jogn Wilkes Booth.  Actors were treated much like Mark Twain's rascals the King and the Duke in Huckleberry Finn ridden out of town on a rail after a judicious tar and feathering.

John Wilkes Booth adapted the Byronic attitude toward the southern states succession as an act of heroic Republicanism and labeled Lincoln as an ape man intent on destroying the white race. John Wilkes Booth was not alone in his contempt for Abraham Lincoln.

Lincoln got the Trump treatment from both sides of the Mason Dixon line and from Boys in Blue as well as Rebs in butternut grey. The Irish Democrats voted against Lincoln, because they wanted a swift end to the draft and hated the Emancipation Proclamation which put them in hard competition with American blacks.

The majority of the northern Irish-American community were loyal Democrats, supporting the party that had accepted them in the face of widespread discrimination during the 1850s. Short shrift was given to any former community leader, such as Thomas Francis Meagher, who advocated Lincoln’s re-election. Issues such as emancipation and the enforcement of the draft remained emotive for many in November of 1864, particularly in New York. Election day finally arrived on 8th November, with Abraham Lincoln sweeping to a second term in office. The majority of Irish-Americans in the north had voted for what proved to be the losing side, a fact not easily forgotten by many of their fellow citizens in the years that followed Lincoln’s assassination and the successful conclusion of the war.

All that subsequent Rum Romanism and Rebellion that still tweaks Democrats of Irish origin stayed with Paddy and Bridey for generations.  George M. Cohan notwithstanding.

The first Hollywood star to become a political power in American government was dancer/actor George Murphy and Irish American - who ran as a Republican.  Murphy became a United States Congressman and was fierce anti-Communist from California.  Another actor followed his lead into the Party of Lincoln, Ronald "Dutch" Reagan.  Jimmy Cagney and other left leaning Democrats crowded around FDR and Harry Truman.

Hollywood loved mixing it up with political power.  Frank Sinatra reached out to Sam "Mo-Mo" Giancanna for help in getting Jack Kennedy in the White House.

Our Republic, like the Roman Republic of Shakespeare's cycle-dramas which the Booth Brothers starred throughout the late 1850's to the Civil War, was a proud tradition of manly individualists, until it was beset by a string of patrician demogogues ( The Gracchi, Marius, Sulla, Cataline and Caesar) all intent on one man rule to maintain the oligarchy. They succeeded - the jury is still out on the American - and the Empire took over with actors playing their parts.
Performers were among the infamis, and couldn’t call themselves citizens of Rome or get any of the associated benefits, like the limited form of political representation others enjoyed. This meant that most comedians who acted were former slaves or people who didn’t have any citizenship to lose.

For the rare comedian who worked their way out of acting into writing, there was no promise of keeping that higher social status. In 46 B.C.E., Julius Caesar demanded that one of the great mime writers of the time, Decimus Laberius, perform in a sort of stand-up battle of mimes. Laberius would face off against a Syrian ex-slave called Pubilius. Laberius wasn’t overly eager to forfeit his rank, but how could he say no to Caesar? So Laberius appeared, dressed in the outfit of a Syrian slave to mock his competitor, and said “Citizens, we are losing our freedom,” as well as, “He who many fear must fear many.” While Laberius lost the competition, he was actually rewarded by Caesar so that he could buy back his citizenship.

Early 21st Century Americans have witnessed the power of celebrity and rise of the actor, clown, mime and player as political arbitrator and moral censor.  B-List thespians like Martin Sheen lectured the nation on the dangers of the Elector College after the 2016 Presidential Election hurt the feelings of Hollywood. President Obama gave the Presidential Medal of Freedom to friendly Hollywood Stars : Sidney Poitier, Robert DiNero, Robert Redford, Meryl Streep, Ciciley Tyson, Tom Hanks and Director Steven Spielberg. Roman Emperors made Senators of actors when the real rot took hold.

Today,  Mega-stars threaten Americans who support Trump even tepidly in the wake of  The Caravan, Kavanaugh and Comic Opera bomb deliveries of the 'taint' of Trump.

Rome went its way, because everyone sold out.  Actors helped make that purchase.


Monday, October 15, 2018

It Was My Pleasure, Ladies!!!!!! Think Nothing Of It! Oh, I see you have already.

This handwritten missive came through my transom this morning.  I must reply.

Dear Girls, Madams, Damsels, Sheilas, Skirts, Twists, Broads, Babes, Ladies, Trollops, Doxies, Shrills, Xanthipes and Harridans,

I was only too happy not to force myself upon any woman - 6 to to 60; blind, crippled or crazy.  It is the very least thing that I can do.

For Sixty-Six years, it has been my policy to regard women with awe, wonder and healthy dose of fear.

Girls, you ain't got nothing to worry from old Patrick Francis.  Unless, of course, I become a movie mogul, a Democratic Senator, GOP Spin Doctor, Fox News Blow-hard, or Left Wing Academic.
You gals send me!

Your Devoted Slave,

Pat Hickey

Tuesday, September 04, 2018

12 Hopefuls - One Mayor;Uglier Than Homemade Soup This election

Rahm Emanuel realized that the Jason Van Dyke Trial, assorted Expressway shut-downs, more revelations about the McDonald  Shooting Video shell game coming to light in the next two weeks and the cold fact of the matter that voting Chicagoans can't stand the sight of him, brought him to the conclusion that the Chicago News Media and Bahzillions of dollars are not enough to see him returned to the 5th Floor for a third term.

Rahm is out.

Twelve people want to be mayor.

Less than a handful of them are qualified, but that matters not in Chicago. 

The only thing that matters in Chicago, Cook County of Illinois is the question, " How long can the string-pullers and money pavers endure some Yutz in any office?"

The answer to that question bespeaks the long tenures of

Toni Preckwinkle

Dick Durbin

Pat Quinn

Bruce Rauner
Lisa Madigan

David Orr

Mike Quigley

Jan Schakowsky

Danny Davis

Bobby Rush

Dorothy Brown

These marginal people of marginal talents are the current pantheon of political lions.  I would not ask most of them to cut my lawn and my lawn is disgraceful.

Now, Chicago sits on the cusp of another opportunity to wade through media muck and take seat on that celestial shoreline with a qualified human being in charge of an important political office.

  • Paul Vallas  is a man of great talent and nice sensibilities who spent the last thirty years fixing other peoples problems in Pennsylvania, new jersey and Louisiana.

  • Garry McCarthy was Rahm Emanuel's 'out of town talent for police matters until he wasn't.  Is he a good cop?  Some cops say he was good boss.  Others, just a political hack.  I see that he a genuine talent for remaining relevant and is a smart and cagey interviewer.
  • Lori Lightfoot is . . . a darling of the media and should expect and demand their vassalage.
  • Dorothy Brown is a whisper from an indictment.
  • Willie Wilson is a self-made millionaire with the oratorical and rhetorical kills of Slip Mahoney.
The latest entry into the lists is Jeremiah Joyce, Jr.  I know Jerry and admire him. Mr. Joyce is smart without being a grafter; thoughtful without being a pest and caring without being Phil Ponce. Joyce should be mayor and would do a damn fine job as mayor.  However, like Daniel Patrick Moynihan, the only man who should have been President since Harry S. Truman, Jeremiah Joyce will be treated to Trump-like bile and vituperations from Chicago's Neil Steinberg, Laura Washington, Mark Brown, Ron "'68" Grossman, Eric Zorn, Mary Schmich and the always laughable Rex Hupke.
People will buy what they are selling.

If voters want change, they can vote for a competent Chicagoan.

The remaining months before the mayoral election will be uglier than home made soup.

Friday, August 31, 2018

Jeremiah Joyce Can Expect a Coverage Embargo from Rahm's Chicago Media Pets

The Hardest Working "newspaper" in America ( The Sun Times). . . doesn't.  It takes orders, from Illinois protected oligarchs, sanctioned hacks, SEIU bosses and Billy Dec.

The paper ( Tribune) once regarded as " McCormick's anti-union, anti-Catholic, anti- working man rag"  remains true to its former self with two notable exceptions: John Kass and Kristen McQueary.

WGN television and radio news is whoppie cushion serious.

WTTW - Winnetaka Talking to Wilmette is a government sponsored joke.

WBBM radio seems to take second hand news from the Sun Times.

WMAQ ?  Yeah, me too.  I don't know what they are thinking.

ABC?  Disney and Emanuel Industries.

There you have it. 

Now, about the Hateful Eight running against Rahm?   One is a neighborhood person.  Jeremiah Joyce, Junior. 

He is as smart as David Axelrod pretended Barack Obama to be and has the grades to prove it. Unlike Obama, Jerry Joyce is capable.

Capable?  That is something elected officials tend not to be.

Therefore, the person with a chance to push Rahm Emanuel to one of the coasts again, where he belongs, before he and his omnivorous pals steal everything, is Jeremiah Joyce.

Jerry Joyce, like Jeanne Ives who almost toppled our billionaire Governor Bruce, can expect no coverage of his campaign for Mayor from Chicago's stooge media.

Jerry Joyce should talk to Jeanne Ives about waking up those timid clowns.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

John McCain - RIP to a VIP

This photo says it all about the late Senator John McCain, but nothing about the young Naval Aviator who endured the Hanoi Hilton. 

John McCain is an American hero, who laid  his youth, blood and soul on the altar of sacrifice. Nothing can change, or even diminish that fact.

I thought John McCain was on the level, but that was back in 2007-2008, when he seemed to earnestly want to pull America out of the cactus of Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as renew the American Spirit.   I was wrong.

John McCain wanted to be President, but he wanted to be fawned over by the corrupt American news media more. 

John McCain would rather be the THE MAVERICK, than President. 

He got that.  

John McCain was tortured horribly by the Communists.

America has been gulled by the Communists on Senator John McCain's watch. 

I lost any illusion about John McCain the elected official in September 2008, when the tanked economy and the Wall Street crisis compelled the laughably unprepared candidate to hand the election over to equally incurious Barack Obama. 

For eight years, McCain twisted like a pretzel for media attention and was rewarded with the election Donald Trump.

I honor Naval Aviator John McCain.

I am saddened by the fatuous, but wealthy late senior Senator from Arizona.

Both personalities will meet God.  

I wonder which one will pass muster. 

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Trump Really Has Me Upset? Not Really.

The Helsinki Stinky, President #45, Donald J. Trump has really  upset all and sundry. His remarks that say that he trusts Vlad the Bad more than Jim Clapper and Mullah Brennan have gotten the Old Maverick John McCain back in front of cable camera men and made Butch Maddow grind her gender specfic incisors.

Als de hemel valt, krijgen we allemaal een blauwe pet
(Translation: If the sky/heaven should fall, we will all be wearing blue caps


I am not a Huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuugggggge Trump Fan, for ever, BUT  doing just fine. Thanks so much. I mean it's not like Trump sold guns to a Drug Cartel, or deliver $I.4 Billion cash on air-lifted cargo pallets to Iran.

Update, post Helsinki:
  • My teeth did not fall out 
  • I Have not had the Miseries, the Twizzles, or the Vapors
  • My oatmeal went down without a problem 
  • I do not require fundoplication surgery . . . today
  • Tinea pedis is not a problem
  • My night terrors have turned into 25 Cartoons
  • Feel like having me some Clancy's Pub Pot Roast Rolls
  • I found a Double Sawbuck in my dryer
  • The Boss said I was doing swell work
  • The Dutch Club Borrel is August 16th
  • Chicago Special Olympics received a donation of $ 100,000
  • Lawman  is back on the Western Channel
  • David Muir is having no problem with cue cards
  • The Zebra Sisters has disappeared
  • McNally's and St. Cajetan's are doing great
  • Cardinal Cupich has one swell pallium
  • My car is almost ready to pass the Illinois Emissions Test!

Must be some serious, low-down, Trumpolicious bullshot dgoing down!

Oooooo Bing Cherries  $1.99 a pound at Mariano's!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, July 07, 2018

Ignore Pfleger and His Stunts - Keep Civil. Keep the Peace and Pfleger Loses

The Dan Ryan March gambit is only one incendiary in fiery Pastor Pfleger's arsenal. It is not a a nuclear bomb.  It is a a sparkler meant to put out the eyes of fair-minded people.

Getting fair-minded people blinded is what Michael Pfleger is all about.

Once people are blinded to his motives (accumulation of power, money and media focus) they depend upon others to lead them about in the darkness.

Fair-minded people blinded by Pfleger's sparklers go silent to his most egregious deeds and words and say things like, " Well, Father Mike really cares and has done great things for his people."

Name two things?

Thought so.

This latest stunt is meant to force politicians to bully business and philanthropy to peel off a few more millions for projects with Pfleger's imprimatur - nothing more. Pflger might even toss Base a bone, because Cardinal Kilroy Was Here got behind Blond Jesus again.

Full disclosure, I know Michael Pfleger and you can have him.   He is a brilliant, calculating Munchhausen.  If you were as 'afflicted and assaulted' as much as Pfleger, you would be pretty secure. No is after him; never were.

I have known the pastor of the Faith Community of St. Sabina  since July 1996, when I went to work for Leo High School, just east of his fiefdom that includes the Great Auburn Gresham Community Development , senior residences, real estate holdings on 76th Street and other Michael Pfleger Industries.

Leo Principal and CEO Bob Foster sent me over to meet with Pfleger, my first week on the job.  We met in the St. Sabina rectory.  Pfleger told me that he was more a "prophet than a priest."  I could not supress a laugh and Michael Pfleger redened to purple - meeting over.

Foster agreed with me.  He is a dangerous guy.

While at Leo High School, I learned exactly who Michael Pfleger is and what he is all about - Michael Pfleger.  In my time at Leo High School, Pfleger

  • Co-opted the Chicago Sun Times ( Kathleen Falsani and Editors) into creating a controversy where none existed - the Southwest Catholic Conference, while Cardinal George was in Poland. 
  • Covertly worked with the Jesuits to establish an independent school on the site St. Killian's Parish to construct a Christo Rey knock-off unique to the African American community 
  • Pfleger and ABC Channel Seven created a story that 'Cardinal George wanted to make Michael Pfleger' President of Leo High School and Pfleger told NPR's Tavis Smiley and Cornel West that 'Leo could not survive' without him  
In case Pfleger denied any ill-will toward Leo.  Leo President Bob Foster is the only man alive who could make Pfleger blush and run out of the room in shame.  Foster did just that by directly confronting Pfleger with proof of his back-handed schemes and attempts to take over the school.  

Foster did not threaten.  He confronted Pfleger with evidence - a business prospectus that included Pfleger's salary demands and personal governance rubrics.   The document was given to Leo High School by a Roman Catholic nun working on the project.  

The second time was in a governance meeting at the Office of Catholic Schools, which Pfleger had absolutely no stake in concerning the future of Leo High School and had no business being at the meeting.  Members of Leo 's Advisory Board were present and Dr. Nick Wolsonovich, former Supt. of Catholic Schools received a lesson in how to handle an arrogant and shameless opportunist. 

Bob Foster noted Pfleger's past attempts to harm Leo High School and the activist jumped up and stormed out of the meeting. 

Pfleger's march on the Dan Ryan is not about guns, deaths of innocent people, or bringing people together.  The march is intended to get one white (Caucasian) person to do or say anything that might provoke violence. A full-blown race riot would be just the thing for Michael Pfleger Industries. 

Pfleger wants hate mail

Pfleger needs anger.

Pfleger wants no peace.

With peace, justice and love, Pfleger gets no checks from banks. big business and do-gooder 501(c) 3 foundations.

Michael Pfleger has never drawn an un-calculated breath in his life.  He will not change - there is no percentage in it.

Pfleger is not aiming his march at Rahm Emanuel. Were that the case, Phleger would shut down Navy Pier, or the Skyway that Daley sold off.

Pfleger wants angry white people to overreact.  

Give him your love and your back. 

Ignore the phony Pfleger.

Boycott, the media that pumps him up.

Ridicule the politicians, priests, bishops and poltroons to dance to his tunes.

Maybe some Pfleger-sparkler blind people may recover their sight and start working against real racism, bigotry and injustice. 

Have a lovely weekend!

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Goodbye to All That – Forty-Three Years of Catholic Secondary Education

Leo President Dan McGrath, "D" and Me in 2010 at St.Columbanus Catholic Church for Leo Graduation

I had a ball!  Since 1975, I have worked exclusively and loyally in Catholic secondary teaching and fund-raising.  I taught thousands of young people who have grown into remarkable men and women.  I have worked with brilliant people at Bishop McNamara, La Lumiere School, Leo High School and Brother Rice High School.

It was a privilege to work for Alpha-male teachers and school leaders like Bob Foster of Leo, the late Fr. Ken Yarno of Bishop Mac and with Headmaster Larry Sullivan of La Lumiere School. These gentlemen led the herd and protected its flanks – always.  Leading from the front is the action of a true servant.

I was out of the classroom for twenty-two years and when I returned the passive aggressives seemed to dominate.  I went to work as substitute/permanent sub -and at-will, no contract, we can fire without cause, salary saver.

I thought I was part of an old-timey, collegial faculty.  In fact, I was welcomed to the work by the key administrators with all the warmth of a Turk at a christening.

The faculty was very nice. They offered a great deal of help in matters like computer-based learning and scantron testing.

The bosses, not so much.

Wherever passive-aggressives thrive, the culture dies hard.  For years this seemed limited to ‘downtown’ – the educators who mandated directives, issued policy contortions and relayed third-hand dispositions, like “The Cardinal will never agree to that.”

Bob Foster said, “Well then, let’s go and ask His Eminence!” And he did and learned that the Cardinal was in full agreement with Bob Foster.

Today, the Beta primate-in-charge shrugs and smirks in too many Catholic high schools.
I ended my four decades of work in Catholic high schools on January 26, 2018.  Let’s let things go at that.

Safe to say, I walked into a passive-aggressive booby-trap and took the bait.
 I got to get back to fishing; don’t open your mouth and you won’t swallow a hook. The story is sad and sordid.

The day that my position as a substitute teacher was terminated, I applied for work as a laborer on one of the Flood Brothers Disposal Trucks, where my talents would suit the charism of that corporate culture.  I would rather haul trash than teach wonderful young people, while second guessing every assignment, lesson and word that I might dispense.

The school I worked at is staffed by some phenomenal teachers and administered by a passive-aggressive cohort, not unlike the ‘downtown’ crowd of alumnae of closed girls’ schools who dominated the education chancery.

I wondered about that.  Maybe that is all part of the ‘thinking-outside-the-box’ corporate culture that requires no candor and plenty of empty-sizzle- Marketing 101 stuff.

Anyway, I am out of it for keeps.  I loved teaching and the students seemed to appreciate what I was presenting. Now, I am an acquired taste, I know.

What worries me is the rooted nature of Catholic secondary school administrator passive aggression. It will not go away.

It is not only the school for which I last worked but many of them.  There are no leaders like the Father Kens, the Larry Sullivans, or the Bob Fosters.
Brother Rice President Dr. Kevin Burns and Cardinal Cupich

Teachers hunker down and wait for things to pass over, but Catholic schools do not have much time left.

Forbes magazine noted in 2013 that, “ Passive-aggressive behavior in any company is one of the most destructive cancers to a culture that ends up killing both a great company, and the self-esteem of the individuals working there.  “
Forbes offered these signs of the creeping cancer in an organization – Leader(s) who:
on the surface appears to be agreeable and supportive, but behind the scenes will back stab, undercut, and sabotage. 
constantly states that you can trust their words when their actions have consistently shown that not to be true.
makes promises about things when they have no intention of ever following through, often then blaming things that were “out of their control” for precluding them from being able to fulfill their promise.
smiles and agrees with you to your face, but then disagrees or even sabotages things behind your back.
states “I was supportive of you, but this other person wasn’t so there is nothing I can do” in order to place blame on someone else rather than voicing their own lack of support for the matter.
gives positive praise and feedback to you directly, but then takes actions to undercut you to coworkers and management. . . .

Demoralized faculty members are silent at meetings.  Coaches and teachers who had been part of a school’s golden age of recruitment, school spirit and instruction watched their programs, camps, mission goals and successes shoved aside, or dismantled, in favor of new blood that was anemic at best. The mantra now is - "Hey, what’s the big deal? It’s all good!"

Things are not all that good. If enrollment is down, it is not only the latest census figures to blame.  Kids want to go to a school with a sparked-up faculty and leadership that is willing to have the backs of its teachers and students; not merely, complaint department for helicopter parents.

My last lesson to my Theology 3: Social Justice class was this. “We are, who we used to be.  If we do not honor the Bishop Bernard Sheils, Mother Cabrinis and Terence Powderlys, how can we know what the hell Social Justice is all about?”

Likewise, if Catholic schools do not honor Alpha Dog leaders who built our schools, nurtured their traditions and reputations, how will they keep operating?  If I do not remain faithful to the creed that ran my family to America, I must be a Unitarian.

Catholic high schools will go the way of the carburetor, I'm afraid.
Cardinal George and Leo Legend Jack Schaller '43

Cardinal Cupich seems to agree.   Archbishop Blase Cupich is no Francis Cardinal George,

Sour grapes? Oh, hell no.  I had a ball.  The job is about the kids.  If I did a good job, or bad, they tell me.  They are far from Passive Aggressive.   They learn to be Passive Aggressive out in the work-world.

You will never find a Passive-Aggressive type taking out the trash - they send memos to have it done by others.

I am beginning a new career away from Catholic secondary schools.  I have been selling buckets of golf balls at 50 Acre Park in Evergreen Park, since April. On Monday, I begin a new career.

Friday, June 15, 2018

The Old Ranger Saved by The Kubota Whisperer (Gino C) at 50 Acre Park in Evergreen Park

Howdy Folks!  This is the Old Ranger with another true life adventure from 50 Acre Park!  The Old Ranger had a mishap with our trusty Kubota (used to pick up golf balls) and the rake hitch.  The Old Ranger was in a fix and that's darn tootin'!

Well, Mayor Jimmy Sexton hires  great people and I called one up!

Gino C is a Veteran Ranger at 50 Acres Park in Evergreen Park; I called upon Gino to help this Old but Newer Ranger unscrew-up a Kubota Mishap, on Friday morning. Gino lives close to the greatest family resource on the south side - Evergreen Park's 50 Acres Park.

 With Gino's help the Old Ranger soon had the Kubota ( Old #46 Public Vehicle) eating up driving range caviar like  a glutton at Old Country Buffet
 Then the Old Ranger personally washes each and every Wilson, Titleist and Scrub with Twenty Mule Team Borax . . .
 Via the Miracle of of the Wittek Ball Washer.
 The Old Ranger hand separates chopped balls and tosses them out like day old White Castles.
 Our Big Hitters are happ about that!

 Chopped sirloin, chopped liver and chopped chicken salad- GOOD
Chopped Ball - NO GOOD!

Come on out to the Driving Range at 50 Acre Park in Evergreen Park!!!!!! So long, Folks!

Monday, June 11, 2018

CPS Sex Scandal Only The Chorus of Rahm's Lullaby of Barbara Byrdland Bennett

Lullaby of birdland, that's what I
Always hear when you sigh
Never in my wordland
Could there be ways to reveal
In a phrase how I feel
Have you ever heard two turtle doves
Bill and coo when they love?
That's the kind of magic
Music we make with our lips when we kiss -(George Shearing / George David Weiss)

"Emanuel's plan to seek a third term using education as a major cornerstone has been blown out of the water by a scandal that hits home like none before it. This time, children have been directly victimized. And the adults in charge — including the mayor of Chicago — should have protected them. They didn't."  Fran Spielman Chicago Sun Times
 The CPS Sex Scandal is not a tune to  bother Rahm at all, Fran.  not a note of it. If the sex scandal bothered Rahm it would never appear in the Sun Times at all - let alone on front page.  Fran Spielman gets a con su permiso from the 5th Floor and her boss ex-Alderlad Edwin Eisendrath before any ink is spilled.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Governor Bruce Rauner are terrified of the Lullaby of Byrdland.

No not the great Sarah Vaughan's rendition

No, the one that might be sung by -Barbara Byrd Bennett.  Remember Triple B, Citizens?

Where is Rahm's Byrdland?  She was sentenced to 4 1/2 years at Federal Prison Camp, Alderson in West Virginia.  She was succeeded by Forrest Claypool.

For those of us paying attention and not just wildly delighted about much anticipated the 2+ Billion O'Hare Expansion of Terminal # 2, take glance at this:

In April 2015, Byrd-Bennett took a personal leave as Chicago Public Schools CEO during an investigation into a $20.5 million no-bid contract that had been awarded to SUPES Academy, a professional development organization she used to work with as a consultant.[8] She resigned in June 2015.[5]

The indictment against Byrd-BennettIn October, 2015, a federal grand jury in Illinois returned a 23-count indictment against Byrd-Bennett and two co-conspirators.[9][10]
On October 8, 2015, the U.S. Attorney handling the case announced that Byrd-Bennett would plead guilty to charges that she set up a kickback scheme in which she steered no-bid CPS contracts worth more than $23 million to her former employer, SUPES Academy, that would pay her 10 percent of that amount. Her former boss, the owner of SUPES, also promised Byrd-Bennett a job after she left her CPS post, trust accounts funded with $127,000 for each of her twin grandsons,[11] and other perks. It was reported that the U.S. Attorney's office found incriminating evidence against Byrd-Bennett, including an email to the SUPES owner that said, "I have tuition to pay and casinos to visit".[12][13] She had pushed parties aggressively to secure the corrupt deals.[14]
Byrd-Bennett pleaded guilty on October 13, 2015, in federal court. In exchange for her cooperation prosecutors agreed to request a sentence of 7 1/2 years in prison, which is below the federal sentencing guidelines. She agreed to delay her sentencing until after the charges against her co-defendants were resolved.[11][6] On April 28, 2017, she was sentenced to 4 1/2 years in prison.[15]
On August 28, 2017, Byrd-Bennett began serving her sentence at Federal Prison Camp, Alderson, nicknamed "Camp Cupcake", in West Virginia.[16] Wikipedia - the New York Times of Busy (emphases my own) 
 SUPES is  bi-partisan ( Rahm and Rauner) diddling of the taxpayer that makes the current sex scandal sound like an Oscar Wilde tete a tete. 

In 2013, SUPES received a $20 million no-bid contract for principal training that is the focus of the federal probe that has targeted Barbara Byrd-Bennett, who is now on leave from the CEO position. She has not been accused of any wrongdoing.
A source tells Catalyst Chicago that in 2011 and 2012, Byrd-Bennett was paid through the SUPES contract with the Fund to provide coaching for then-Chief Education Officer Noemi Donoso, whose position Byrd-Bennett eventually took over.
The Fund is a politically connected group made up of Chicago’s civic elite. The 15-year-old organization has funded a variety of projects, from a consultant who helped to write a CPS action plan to staff time at the University of Chicago to help develop the current teacher evaluation system called REACH.
In May of 2012, when CPS hired Byrd-Bennett to be the chief education officer, it was widely reported that she had been in Chicago for 10 months doing “executive coaching” and was being paid by the Fund. At the time, the Fund did not refute that, but now officials say that the Fund never paid Byrd-Bennett directly. Chicago Reporter

Twenty million dollars is a nice pile of cash, but compared to the landfill of filthy lucre from which it was spawned.

There is a rumor afoot - eight million dollars of that 20 million is yet unaccounted for - rumor mind you.

Eight millions of dollars!

Where could that wad of dough be yeasting?  My guess is in one of these havens: Caymen Islands, Panama, British West Indies, Nevis, Antigua . . .


Well Barbara Byrd Bennett will be getting out of Camp Cupcake, in almost no time at all, and as the lady sang, " I have tuition to pay and casino's to visit!"

Could it be that Mayor Emanuel is delighted by the fact that CPS hired some nasty sexual predators and career criminals?

Compared to the Lullaby of Barbara Byrd Bennett with full orchestra and Federal audience being played all over Chicagoland, you bet!

Eight million dollars!

No casino needed.

Friday, June 08, 2018

The Old Ranger's Report from 50 Acres Park in Evergreen Park

Howdy, Folks, this is the Old Ranger bringing you our news from the Driving Range at 50 Acres Park in Evergreen Park, Illinois!

Well, Folks, the bucket blasters have been hitting farther down range, now that the weather has turned around -like a Kardashian spouse.

Why only yesterday, I was out at 5:45 AM riding the range on my trusty Kubota Public Works vehicle and learned that:

  • Someone has been hitting all the way out to the 300 yard marker or there abouts.  There were at least two dozen white roundies all nestled in the tall grass
  • Our Bucket Buyers ( $ 5 for small and $ 10 for a large) are Slicers and not Hookers.  Must have been several hundred Titleist pearls hugging the right side range net and I had to dismount the Kubota more times than my old back can tolerate - not complainin' mind you, just sayin'
  • Beer is still $3 for Miller High Life, Miller Lite and $4 for Modelo
  • We have Snickers, Skittles, M & Ms ( plain and peanut), Chips and Slim Jims for measly $1.00 each
  • Hot dogs, chips and a can of Pepsi, Sprite or Water for $ 3.00.
  • A crew of rangers, including yours truly, who serve your desires - Shucks Gino, Frank, Dan, Steve and me would come over and make you breakfast,  if Mayor Jim Sexton gave us the go -ahead.
  • The Disc Golfers are thicker than flies on a used Slo-Poke left on a porch swing
  • Dogs are having more fun than a teenage boy with two . . .paper routes
  • Mr. Kevin Kelly ( Leo HS '70) inspected the facilities and questioned the Old Ranger about his get-up-and-go and that sassy hitch in his step
50 Acres Park is best out door fun on the south side.

Come on out; jaw with us Rangers; visit the horse barn;
hit some of that white range caviar out to the far markers; grab a beer and a pop at our umbrella shaded tables and have some vigorous and healthy exercise!  

Well, I must attach the big rake to my trusty Kubota and clean up the campus.  The Old Ranger needs to  see more of you, Folks!

See you all on the range at 50 Acres Park - 2701 West 91st Street - in Evergreen Park Illinois!

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Media Gives Shelter, Aid and Comfort to Slum Lord Valerie Jarrett

Former longtime Chicago Tribune editor Mark Jacob remarked on Twitter: "One of the weirdest things about this Roseanne fiasco is that she went after Valerie Jarrett, who was probably the least controversial big shot in the Obama administration, a consummate technocrat, comfortable in the background, someone who tried to stay above the fray." Natasha Korecki's Illinois Playbook in Politico
 Grove Parc is one of the outstanding examples of this problem. It sits on the border of Obama's district. It is 504 apartments of subsidized housing, fully renovated in the early 1990s, that have fallen into such disrepair that the plan now is to demolish them and start all over again. It was built by a nonprofit led by a number of Obama's supporters. It was managed during the period of its greatest decline by a company called The Habitat Company, which is led by Valerie Jarrett, who is the senior advisor to Obama's presidential campaign, and it is, as I said, in his district, so it struck us as sort of emblematic of the issue that we wanted to write about. NPR 2009

Roseanne Barr is paying for her remarks.

Valerie Jarrett remains shielded by the Hopium Smoking Media Chiefs in Chicago and around the nation.

From the moment that Democrats like former mayor Richie Daley learned by public housing/public lands and Federal Dollars was the Comstock Load of the New Millenium, Valerie Jarrett has made millions of dollars for herself and  the Cook County oligarchs who have destroyed the City, County and State, but are no where near done.

Long after the smoke concerning Valerie Jarrett's nefarious abuse of poor people in Chicago's most under-served communities wafted out over the lakefront, the fire burns in Altgeld Gardens, Parc Grove and along Chicago's south shore lakefront neighborhoods, but the Watchdogs of Chicago, the invested political news media has yet to present the true nature of Ms. Jarrett's larcenous investments.

The woman who acted as the White House shadow governement for eight years and engineered the disasterous Iranian payoff of pallets of billions of dollars continues the grift and oozes nonsense on CNN, MSNBC and in the pages of Chicago's two daily propaganda rags.

I never saw the new Roseanne Show.   Hardly recall her old show.

I have witnessed the Valerie Jarrett Media Circus for far too long. When does the real 'teaching moment' begin on this powerful grifter and slum lord?

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Hickey's Hesychasm - Let's Guard Our Hearts, Unlike Ireland


                Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner. The Jesus Prayer

I say the Memorare about twenty-five to thirty times a day  - more when I am feeling particularly oafish, vain, self-pitying and ungrateful. 

This week I was disappointed but not surprised to learn that Ireland voted over-whelmingly to promote and pay for the slaughter of unborn children.   Ireland has wanted to become England ever since Eamon De Valera* fell out of fashion and historical memory.   The Catholic De Valera became less culturally attractive than did the secular Marxist pro- terrorist personalities who dominated the Republican zeitgeist in Ireland from the 1970's to the Repeal of the 8th Amendment to the Irish Constitution that protected human life from conception to expiration.  

55% of Ireland's population voted for abortion.  Only County Donegal shouted for 'No' to abortion and repeal of the 8th Amendment. 

Yes voters celebrated the birth of Modern Secular Ireland - a highly educated and intrinsically stupid nation of BBC-Euro go-alongs and alcagüetes. In short,  Gypo Nolan was a more steadfast stalwart than RTE viewers, or readers of the Irish Times. The lives of unborn children were to 'Shove Wesht' from Cork and Kerry and Wexford to Mayo. Image result for repeal of the 8th looks like Triumph of the WillImage result for Triumph of the will Nazi Women

This horror comes as no surprise, anymore than one watching the Triumph of the Will in 1935 could see that big things were happening in Germany.   Ireland is no longer your grandfather's Emerald Isle - its will has triumphed over God's will. 

In deserts of Egypt, Syria and Gaza around 219 AD, very educated and cultured people left the sophisticated and evolved world of the Roman Empire for caves, trees and pillars out where Christ lost His Sandals and found the means to overcome the very psychological worms that eat at our souls to this day. 

According to the Desert Fathers, uncontrolled thoughts are the origins of some of the sicknesses of the soul. They identified eight non-psychological sicknesses of a spiritual origin, classified by the monk Evagrius as: greed of any sort, a pathological relationship to sex, a pathological relationship to money, sadness, aggressiveness, acedia (an illness of the soul expressed by listlessness, boredom, laziness – a precursor to slothfulness) vanity, and pride. These eight generic diseases have a pathological source: narcissism, which the Fathers called   philautia, excessive self-love. . . .
Today cognitive sciences are in agreement with the diagnosis established by the Desert Fathers concerning the illnesses of the soul, which are growing rapidly today, along with the therapies which they had already recommended nearly 2000 years ago. It is recognized that today we are all suffering from countless and continuous demands no our attention, and that this trend disturbs our interiority. Xerri lists a variety of areas in which we are over-stimulated, thanks especially to digital media: food, material goods, sex, leisure, self-image, superficiality, criticism…

No one is asking anyone to sit on the Balbo obelisk at Soldier Field, or take up space under the Jane Byrne Interchange and begin a life contemplative, but we can begin to emulate the Greek Fathers of the Desert and guard our hearts.

Guarding the heart, in Greek nepsis (vigilance), is being attentive to everything that happens in our heart. It is a spiritual method which aims to free man of bad or passionate thoughts. It invites us to observe the thoughts which penetrate our soul, and to discern between the good and the bad. Evagrius said: “Take care of yourself, be the gatekeeper to your heart and don’t let any thought enter without questioning it.” As Xerri points out: “The elders noticed that holy thoughts led to a peaceful state, the others to a troubled state.”
The indispensable means of guarding the heart is paying close attention to thoughts and discerning between those which are good and healing, and those which are a source of distraction or obsession. The aim is to gain freedom, and to reach indifference, the ability to not be dominated by our thoughts.

Ireland's collective imagination was Greek Christian before it was Roman Catholic.  The Synod of Whitby put an end to Hellanized Celtic Church in favor of the episcopal over-lordship, still extant in that unhappy nation.  The secular bishops of the BBC and the state religion of Great Britain   has exorcised truth along with 8th Amendment.

America did that in 1973 with Roe v. Wade - more shame on us, Yanks.

Ireland is woke and countless children will be slaughtered for some time to come.

These day, repentance is only a three syllable word.   I know I am a sinful louse and work on it daily.

For those who feel they are woke and evolved, maybe The Memorare and the Jesus Prayer might be helpful.   A start anyway.

We are never evolved, by the way.

Under de Valera's rule, the cultural identity of the Irish Republic as Roman Catholic and Gaelic was asserted. Complete independence was secured, but a lasting accommodation with the majority Protestant and British Northern Ireland receded as a result. BBC

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

The Old Ranger - A Catholic High School Teacher on the Open Driving Range

Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?  Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? Matthew 6: 26-7

My job for the last month has been as a ranger - an Evergreen Park Recreation Driving Ranger.

This work for the Village of Evergreen Park is a huge help to me, as I have been out of work since January 26th.

During my search for work, my high school and Loyola University classmate, Evergreen Park Mayor James Sexton offered me this posting, God Bless him!

He made me a Driving Ranger at the glorious 50 Acre Park located at 2701 West 91st in the western half of the legendary Evergreen Park Country Club.   This south side jewel of a park includes
  • One of the best  disc golf courses in Illinois
  • A state of the park dog playground
  • Walking paths over a pond with a fountain
  • A beautifful concert gazebo
  • A mini - farm and stable exhibit with three horses and squad of goats
  • A golf putting green and driving range
Mayor James Sexton is the real deal -  Image result for Mayor James Sexton Evergreen Park a Democrat with the brains to be honest, faithful and not beholden to big money, or trends.  Evergreen Park sits next to Chicago, but is not a homicide blood sponge. 

The media beefs about traffic stops on 95th street ( a vast commercial stretch of road with more shopping malls than a John Hughes movies), but never asks why, "Chicago has more killings, violence, robberies and burglaries" than the village that is wedged on three sides within its own borders. Evergreen Park is not Chiraq, let alone Chicago.
  • Evergreen Park pensions are fully loaded. 
  • Evergreen Park Police and Fire Departments have high morale. 
  • Evergreen Park schools are successful and peaceful
  • Evergreen Park cares for its residents
  • Evergreen Park love its Mayor
I became a Ranger on April 16th and proud to say so.

My obligations are these: 

In The AM shift 6/7AM - 3 PM:

Start, drive and attach the Kubota vehicle to a a ball rake that resembles a farm disc-ing tractor attachment at the front the of vehicle.  The rake is left far out on the range and requires a great deal ingenuity and luck to attach. That is most difficult task of the day - attaching the rake.

Then I spend two hours collecting range balls -in and out of the Kubota.  Using a handy device that pops balls into a canvas bag.   I wear a stout pair of Wellingtons, as the ground is always swampy due to our May Monsoons and the regulated sprinklers.  My first AM shift, I thought that I was in the movie The Birds.  I was being strafed by flights of birds the minute I shifted the Kubota into gear. 

  The disc-rake agitates the grass  sending millions of tiny winged insects out  of their morning ground-lairs and into the beaks of squadrons of Blue Jays, Finches and Robins. Jesus, I am St. Francis!  Well, not so much to the bugs. 

The range balls are disc-ed into four baskets on the rake and when full I transfer the balls to 5 gallon buckets with holes punched in the buttons to allow water to drain.  I carry fifteen buckets in the bed of the Kubota. 

Once all buckets are full, I detach the rake and head for the barn and begin washing the balls.   This is an easy task thanks to Wittek 50 G Superbowl washer.Image result for Range ball washer  I put in a scoop of Borax ( the product sold by the real Old Ranger on Death Valley Days) and fill the tanks with water. I turn on the agitators and cleaning wheels and in fifteen minutes thousands of balls are as clean as a Lithuanian sidewalk. 

I then take the fifteen buckets of cleaned balls and re-load the token operated ball machine. 

Now, I set up the range 
  • Old Glory is unfurled and placed
  • Umbrellas are placed at the tables
  • Yellow flags go in the holes of putting green
  • Heavy Green Ball basket stand placed near the edge of the parking lot
  • Roadside signs are adjusted to open
At this point, I return to the office and count the bank drawer, count 59 tokens, sign the work shift's work sheet, open the windows and serve the public.

Then I restock water, beer/wine and pop; put out the candy and Slim Jim displays and get the hot dog steamer ready. 

On the PM shift, I begin where the AM shift ends.   I sell tokens and comestibles -eats and drinks. Clean counters and tables.  The only difference is closing out.  

We sell small baskets of balls (45) for $ 5.00 and large (90) for $10.  

This is a great little job and very well-suited to a Catholic high school teacher, who is finished with Catholic high schools.

I did not know what I would do, other than work again.

But, God and Jimmy Sexton taught this Old Ranger a lesson that he had forgotten.  The lesson I witnessed on the Kubota and in Matthew's gospel - “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?  Look at the birds of the air . . ."    Look outside the cab of the old Kubota!

Friday, May 04, 2018

Will the Skilled Trades Once Again Go 'All-In" for Rahm Emanuel ?

How 'Proudly Union' are the skilled trades leaders, the rank and file and their families about the re-election of Mayor Rahm Emanuel 2019?

I will be bet one out of the above three are wildly happy to re-endorse the Nine Digit Midget for Mayor.  The other two demographics might be problematic and look to Paul Vallas, Garry McCarthy, Willie Wilson, Bridget Gainer, or Ja'Mal Green.

Rahm's O'Hare Expansion means millions of dollars to electricians, operating enginers ( indoors and out), pipe-fitters, plumbers, carpenters, tile setters and laborers.  Much prevailing wages are on the table.

In any case, Rahm seems poised to be a Turd-Term Mayor and once again wear the Corona Triumphalis. 

The mad Roman emperor Caligula declared war on Poseidon, the God of water, and marched his legions to the sea and told his troops to attack the waves.  Rahm did the very same thing. 

The Chicagoland Pipe Trades were out early and often for Rahm Emanuel in his last go-around.  Your Water Bill reflects, the debt paid promptly by Rahm upon his re-election. 

The Public Sector Unions ( SEIU 'nuff said) were with Chuy Garcia.  They will grudgingly back Rahm this time. 

The Pipe Trades were paid handsomely upon Rahm's re-election, Chicago tax-payers not so much.

Rahm, like JB Pritzker, will count on voter apathy and the lock-step support of the Black Ministers and Cardinal Cupich.

But Skilled and Industrial Labor is the wild card for Rahm Emanuel's continued oligarchy.

Here are some nuggets of Skilled Labor's Fealty to Rahm Emanuel in 2015.

  • Rahm Emanuel is a good friend of organized labor and Chicago’s working families. He’s been behind us the wholeway. “Now it’s time to get behind him,”said Business Manager James Coyne. Join a political rally to reelect Rahm Emanuel at the Feb. 10 union meeting.Local 130, UA will also support his campaign on three Political Action Saturdays on February 7, 14 & 21.Pick up your Plumbers for RahmEmanuel sign at the February 10 rally and proudly display it on yourfront lawn
  • The mayor received $53,900 from the Illinois Pipe Trades political action committee
  • Rahm Backed by Labor: International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (representing two locals) Laborers District Council (represents eight locals) International Union of Operating Engineers (represents two locals) Ironworkers District Council (representing three locals)• Painters District Council 14 (representing 13 locals) 
  • Why is Rahm Emanuel the best choice for our union?
  • BROUGHT THE LIVING WAGE TO CHICAGO’S AIRPORTS, and made sure our 1750 members at O’Hare and Midway will be covered.
  • BRINGING MORE HOSPITALITY BUSINESS: McCormick Place is now the #1 convention center in the country! That means more jobs for our members.DSC_0076
  • Under Rahm, City Council passed an Airport Labor Peace Law that we supported, covering thousands of airport jobs.
  • Mayor Emanuel has supported our union organizing. We have more union agreements since he became Mayor – the Marriott Marquis is just one example.
  • Money for city projects – TIF – has been allocated for future projects like the arena at McCormick Place. TIF funds helped build Blackstone and Allegro Hotels.
  • On April 7th, let’s keep winning.  
Image result for plumbers for rahm
Unless someone, not currently in the race for mayor, announces a genuine challenge that will excite voters to oust Chicago's Caligula, Rahm will wear the Corona Triumphalis, yet again.