Category Archives: David Vitale

The Pencil Today:

THE QUOTE

“He can’t help it. He was born with a silver foot in his mouth.” — Ann Richards

THOMPSON AND KEATON

What a blast in Bloomington tonight!

British songwriter, guitarist, and all-around good guy Richard Thompson plays the Buskirk Chumley Theater at 8pm. And if you’re a film buff, hie over to the IU’s Jacobs School of Music, Auer Hall, also at 8, for a showing of Buster Keaton‘s comedy, “Spite Marriage.” John D. Schwandt will accompany the silent movie on organ.

Bloomington Tuesday Night Stars: Thompson & Keaton

By the way, the tall Thompson (he can give our own Tall Steve Volan a run for his money) came into the Book Corner yesterday. I was fairly busy at the time so I hadn’t taken notice of the celeb in my midst. Only when I ran his credit card did it occur to me that, holy smoke, it’s Richard Thompson!

I showered him with fan praise and — whaddya know? — Thompson showered the Book Corner with his own plaudits.

If you’ve got tix for his gig, you’re in for a big treat.

THE STRIKE: DAY 9

Fingers crossed that Chicago’s teachers approve the proposed deal with the school board this afternoon.

If done, classes will resume tomorrow. If not, the howling from the anti-unionists will become deafening.

Bosses: The School Board’s David Vitale & The Union’s Karen Lewis

The idea is starting to filter out that much of the teachers’ quibble stems from their rigid opposition to the trend toward privatization, not only in Chi but around the nation.

Just a reminder to those who dig privatization: we call them public schools for a reason.

NOT SILVER-TONGUED

Quick question: Is Willard Romney on the payroll of the Barack Obama reelection campaign?

I mean, the guy is running for president, sure, but if he sabotaged himself any more we’d have to grant him honorary membership in the Bluth family of “Arrested Development.”

Mitt Romney Would Fit In Nicely Between George And Lindsay Bluth

Romney washed his hands of responsibility for half the nation at a Boca Raton fundraiser in the spring. He characterized that half as tax non-payers, bums, gold-diggers, and welfare queens. Someone had sneaked a video camera in and caught him in the act.

See, that’s the way Republicans today look at the people of this holy land. The POG had better jump down off its high horse soon or else they’ll be losing a lot more races.

Anyway, Romney’s big mouth makes me think of that great quote (at the top of this column) delivered by Texan Ann Richards at the 1988 Democratic National Convention. She was referring to another patrician Republican running for president at the time, George H.W. Bush.

Somehow Richards became the Texas governor in 1991. How a plain-speaking, unabashedly liberal, feisty female could grab the reins in that antediluvian state is beyond explanation. The Pan troglodytes of Texas came to their senses four years later when they threw her out of office in favor of — oh, my aching head! — George W. Bush.

Had Ann Richards been a pol in, say Illinois, Pennsylvania, or even Nebraska, she just might have become president herself.

NEW SAN ANTONIO ROSE

Here’s a pretty good quality recording of Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys‘ 1940s Texas Swing hit.

The Pencil Today:

THE QUOTE

“All the people like us are we, and everyone else is they.” — Rudyard Kipling

PAY ‘EM: DAY 5

Both sides say this morning that the Chicago Teachers Union strike may end any minute.

Striking Chicago Teachers Rally At Buckingham Fountain

School board boss David Vitale told the Chicago Sun-Times that the strike may end as soon as today, with classes meeting Monday.

Teachers union boss Karen Lewis is playing it a little more conservatively, saying “I don’t know” repeatedly when asked about a swift return to the classroom.

As usual, the city is buying the teachers out with scads of dough, which is fine. But the CTU’s demand for improvements in teacher evaluation system probably won’t be part of the new collective bargaining agreement.

On a political note, if the strike does end this weekend, Barack Obama will not suffer any fallout from it, considering that the memory span of the average voter is about 13 and a half seconds.

Designated Bad Guy

Obama’s former Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel is now mayor of Chicago and has been positioned as the villain in this morality play by striking teachers and pro-union observers. Obama campaign staffers have been keeping their fingers crossed that the stink of Emanuel’s anti-union stance won’t rub off on on the president..

GOD’S MAD MEN

Now the rage spreads to mainland Africa.

Protests over the non-film that ignited the embassy attacks this week have flared up in Sudan.

Sudanese Protesters Burn Down The German Embassy

This whole affair is starting to stink in the worst possible way. Read Roger Ebert’s take on the anti-Islam film, which he has discovered is really no film at all.

And one of this holy land’s fave snake-oil selling preachers, Pastor Terry Jones, was one of the financiers of this particular hate bomb.

I call for the immediately transport of Jones, “filmmaker” Nakoula Nakoula, and anybody else affiliated with “Innocence of Muslims” to the center of downtown Cairo for their just deserts.

The Trailer

That said, my take on the outrage is this: Muslim men ought to spend more time with women. The mobs in the streets are all male, natch. There’s no calming or nurturing influence. Just a bunch of testosterone-engorged bullies shaking their fists and occasionally throwing a stone or slaying an ambassador.

Any culture that relegates women to second-class status is bound to be dominated by the least savory aspects of maleness.

And speaking of males:

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