Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Missing in Action: Jordan Rides the Bus

When the greatest player of a sport retires, it’s memorable. When the greatest player of a sport retires at the height of his athletic abilities so that he can take a stab at another sport he hasn’t played since high school, it’s momentous. And yet somehow Michael Jordan’s one-year fling with professional baseball is practically forgotten, regarded 16 years later like some trivial footnote, like the deleted scene of a classic film, as if it didn’t count. But it did. So, in Jordan Rides the Bus, the latest entry in ESPN Films’ “30 for 30” series, Ron Shelton chronicles the impact of Jordan’s sudden and brief career switch on the NBA, on Nike, on the Birmingham Barons minor league baseball team, on a bus driver, on a real estate agent and on a bar owner. Meanwhile, Shelton charts the evolution of Jordan’s baseball skills, explores theories about the motivations for Jordan’s dalliance with the sport and brings in media talking-heads to reevaluate not just Jordan’s baseball skills but also their own coverage of his brief career. At 50 minutes, Jordan Rides the Bus is a thorough documentary. Alas, it’s as emotionless as a Wikipedia page. Because the one thing Shelton’s documentary doesn’t convey is what all of the above meant to Michael Jordan.

It’s not for lack of effort. Shelton tries. Oh, how he tries! His documentary is heavy with archival Jordan interviews in which the sports icon insists he’s playing baseball to honor his murdered father and because he’s lost his motivation to play basketball, having run out of things to prove after winning three consecutive NBA titles. But these are all sound bites, mostly pulled from press conferences, spoken by an experienced interviewee. They are less revealing of a man in the moment than of a man under the spotlight who is used to the attention. These clips provide no sense of what Jordan thought privately. They provide no sense of what he thinks now. They don’t even provide a sense of what Jordan might have thought semi-recently. In Jordan Rides the Bus we hear a lot of Jordan’s voice thanks to interview and television commercial audio that’s repurposed as voiceover, but since the original sources aren’t cited, it’s hard to put Jordan’s words into context, hard to trust his accounts. Just because Jordan didn’t sit down for an exclusive interview doesn’t mean there should be such a void. After all, Steve James didn’t need an official sitdown with Allen Iverson to give us a glimpse of his subject’s soul in No Crossover. And so it is that Shelton’s film reminds more of two other basketball-related docs in the “30 for 30” series: Without Bias and Guru of Go. Jordan is so distant from this picture, it’s as if he’s dead.

Shelton tries to make up for main character’s absence the way Without Bias made up for the lack of Len Bias and Guru of Go made up for the lack of Hank Gathers: by bringing the subject’s career to life through the memories of witnesses. Strangely, in this case that only makes Jordan seem more distant. Because what one realizes at least halfway through the film is that for all the people who worked with Jordan, or coached Jordan or played with Jordan, no one seems to really know him. Even when they think they’re close, they aren’t. They’re just nearby. For example, Sports Illustrated scribe Jack McCallum’s evidence that Jordan and his father had an especially close bond comes from standing within two feet of the pair in the Chicago Bulls’ locker room after Jordan won his first NBA title – which is ironic justification, by the way, because McCallum is the same talking-head who scolds the media (himself included) for jumping to the conclusion that Jordan’s baseball career had to be somehow linked to swirling rumors about Jordan’s gambling habit because of the close proximity of those events making headlines. Looks can be deceiving. (I mean, could anyone who watched Tiger Woods walk off the 18th green of the British Open in 2006 and sob in his wife’s arms have predicted what was ahead for them? Nuff said.) There isn’t a single person in this film who seems to know Jordan’s heart or to have Jordan in theirs.

Thus, the film’s emotional high point isn’t when the batting coach gets choked up describing the batting cage session when Jordan’s swing started to come together, nor is it an interview in which a Barons teammate gets misty recalling the long bus ride in which Jordan confided how much baseball meant to him and his father, because those moments don’t happen. Instead, the film’s heart beats strongest in the scene in which Jordon hit his first professional home run – first charging out of the batter’s box and then, after the ball clears the fence, slowing to an MVP’s jog (the swagger of greatness is a hard habit to break). When Jordan crosses the plate, his teammates rush out of the dugout to meet him. From afar we can see Jordan’s smile, yet we can’t look into his eyes, not from our distant view, which is provided from some shaky home-video recording. Maybe that’s for the best. In this case, the distance from the subject gives the scene intimacy, as if we’re peeking into a private moment that wasn’t supposed to be remembered by anyone who wasn’t there to witness it. It’s a touching scene.

Watching that homer, it’s interesting to wonder what might have happened if Jordan continued his baseball quest. If not for the looming Major League Baseball players’ strike of 1994, it seems plausible Jordan would have played on, at least one more season. And if he did that, well, who knows? Jordan Rides the Bus does a tremendous job of documenting just how difficult a challenge it was for Jordan to switch sports and what an outstanding athletic achievement it was for him to hit .202, with 51 RBIs and 30 steals, in the minors. Likewise, Shelton does well to put to rest the conspiracy theory, often championed by “30 for 30” series creator Bill Simmons, that Jordan’s baseball career was merely a cover for a behind-the-curtain suspension for gambling. (If it was that, Jordan and NBA commissioner David Stern must be the only ones on the planet who know the truth, and we must then conclude that Stern remains atypically lax on gambling so as not to blow Jordan’s cover going on two decades later.) As for whether Jordan sees his baseball career as a tremendous accomplishment, or whether it brought him some kind of closure in the aftermath of his father’s death, well, again, who knows?

Maybe it’s wrong to expect Shelton’s film to find the soul of a man who, for all his publicity, has always been guarded. Or maybe my viewing of Jordan Rides the Bus was tainted by watching it not long after sitting through another bit of ESPN documentary programming – a retrospective on the career of the racehorse Cigar. At one point in that feature, Cigar’s jockey tears up remembering how the horse refused to take a peppermint after losing a close race for the Triple Crown. If a horse’s emotions can be felt (or at least deeply perceived), one would suspect Jordan’s could be. If not, given the film’s title, I would have at least liked to hear Jordan say how much he enjoyed the peace and tranquility of riding the team bus from town to town on the minor league circuit. Instead, as in so many other instances in this picture, Shelton forces me to take someone else’s word for it.

Jordan Rides the Bus premieres tonight on ESPN at 8 pm ET, and will rerun frequently thereafter. The Cooler will be reviewing each film in the “30 for 30” series upon its release.

Native Americans Not Amused by Mayor Bloomberg’s ‘Cowboy Hat and Shotgun’ Comment

By Lonely Conservative
New York’s politicians are determined to get their filthy paws on the Native Americans’ cigarette business come hell or high water. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg appears to agree with them.
Syracuse.com: During the broadcast on Aug. 13, Bloomberg said, “I’ve said this to David Paterson, I said, you know, ‘Get yourself a cowboy hat and a shotgun. If there’s ever a great video, it’s you standing in the middle of the New York State Thruway saying, you know, ‘Read my lips — the law of the land is this, and we’re going to enforce the law.’”
What a bonehead. No wonder they’re mad.
Oneida Nation Representative Ray Halbritter said the imagery of the governor “wearing a cowboy hat and holding a shotgun” to confront Native Americans is offensive and hurtful. He compared the plight of Native Americans to American Jews in a letter to Bloomberg.
“You can similarly imagine how members of the Jewish community would react if a politician urged the governor to ‘wear a red armband and hold a shotgun’ to confront Jewish people who defend their lands as we defend ours,” Halbritter wrote in a letter to Bloomberg. “While you claim to be calling just for the law to be enforced, surely as a Jewish leader you would recognize the tragic history of laws being used to suppress ethnic minorities.”
Other tribes are calling on the Mayor to resign. That would be nice, but I wouldn’t hold my breath.

St. Bernard Parish president reports up to 15,000 dead fish floating near boom — “Oil in the area”; State officials say

By Paul Martin FloridaOilSpillLaw.com
August 23rd, 2010

State authorities say fish kill in St. Bernard Parish waters likely caused by low oxygen levels, Times Picayune, August 23, 2010:

The fish were found Sunday afternoon, floating near boom that had been deployed in the area to catch oil from the BP oil leak, and washed up on the shoreline, St. Bernard Parish government said in a news release.
“Different species were found dead including crabs, sting rays, eel, drum, speckled trout, red fish, you name it, included in that kill,” St. Bernard Parish President Craig Taffaro said.
Taffaro said there was oil in the area…

[Also] a thick, orange substance with tar balls and a “strong diesel smell” was located Monday morning around Grassy Island, the news release said. Skimmers were dispatched to the area.
The Rest…HERE

The end of the line for Troy Davis?

This morning, the U.S. District Court judge who heard two days of evidence in the Troy Davis case as ordered by the Supreme Court ruled that Davis' team had not demonstrated his actual innocence or his entitlement to a new trial.  This is probably the end of the line for Davis, as Judge William T. Moore sent a copy of his order directly to the Supreme Court, who now can dismiss Davis' direct habeas corpus petition and allow his execution to proceed.

As devastating as this news is (and make no mistake, it is almost certain now that Davis will be executed by the state of Georgia within the next year) it is not terribly unexpected.  Actual innocence claims are nearly impossible to prevail upon without DNA evidence  (which is lacking in this case), and Davis' team made the strategic decision NOT to subpoena Sylvester "Redd" Coles, the so-called "real killer" of Officer Mark McPhail, for the evidentiary hearing. Presumably they figured Coles would testify that he hadn't shot McPhail and Davis had, and his testimony alone would be enough to support the original conviction.  However, several of the other recanting witnesses have since identified Coles as the likely killer, but the judge ruled at the hearing that he would not allow evidence or testimony that Coles had admitted to being the shooter because Coles had not been given the opportunity to refute it through live testimony. At that moment, the die was probably cast because without a "real killer," and with Coles' testimony at trial remaining un-contradicted, it was enough to support the conviction.

Though it will be small solace to the many who believe Davis is innocent and that our state has no business executing someone we are not absolutely certain is guilty of murder, Davis did get an evidentiary hearing and an opportunity to present the testimony of the recanting witnesses in open court.  Unfortunately, the judge to whom such evidence was presented concluded that “[u]ltimately, while Mr. Davis’ new evidence casts some additional, minimal doubt on his conviction, it is largely smoke and mirrors...The vast majority of the evidence at trial remains intact, and the new evidence is largely not credible or lacking in probative value.’’ The evidence needed to be clear and convincing that Davis was innocent and should not have been convicted of the crime of murder by any reasonable jury, and that wasn't what was presented to Judge Moore.

And now, this sad tale will probably come to a very sad but inevitable close at the hands of the state of Georgia.

Statement on the Selection of ‘Race to the Top’ Phase 2 Recipients

Statement on the Selection of ‘Race to the Top’ Phase 2 Recipients
Trenton, NJ – Department of Education Commissioner Bret Schundler today issued the following statement in response to the selection of the final Race to the Top Phase 2 recipients:
“While I am disappointed that New Jersey, having been chosen as a finalist, was not ultimately selected as a recipient at the end of this highly competitive process, our commitment to bold, meaningful reform remains firm. This process has allowed us to move quickly and vigorously to craft much-needed education reforms, while securing the unanimous, bipartisan support of the legislature for the plan embodied in our Race to the Top application.  This fall we must act swiftly to implement the education reforms the people of New Jersey deserve and demand to transform schools in our state that are failing, improve the quality of education for every New Jersey child and challenge the status quo wherever it is necessary.”

New Jersey Business Owners, Activists Seek Repeal of “Cap and Trade” that Could Reverberate Nationally

By Kevin Mooney
Business owners have joined forces with free market activists in New Jersey who are calling on state lawmakers to repeal “cap and trade” policies, which are responsible for boosting energy prices. On Thursday, The New Jersey Restaurant Association (NJRA), which represents the state’s largest employment sector, announced its support for a bill that would both revoke “cap and trade” and rescind New Jersey’s participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI).

“The opposition that is building up against `cap and trade’ in New Jersey could have national implications since the program here was crafted as a model for what President Obama had in mind,” Steven Lonegan, a former mayor of Bogota explained in an interview. “The American people are opposed to these environmental regulations but they are still growing right under our feet at the state level with these regional initiatives. It’s shocking how few people realize New Jersey already has the program.”

Lonegan, who is also a former gubernatorial candidate, is heading up the effort to repeal “cap and trade” in partnership with private citizens and public officials. Legislation (Bill A3147) has been introduced in the Assembly by Assemblyman Michael Patrick Carroll (R-25) and Assemblywoman Alison Littell McHose (R-24). An accompanying bill is expected to be introduced by Senator Michael Doherty (R-23), and Governor Chris Christie has indicated he would sign the legislation.

Get full story here.

Way More Vacation

Get permalink here.

If You Blog in Philly, Please Pay the $300 Tax For Your Thoughts

By Adam Bitely
If you operate a blog in Philadelphia, PA, get ready to pay a $300 tax. That’s right, if you are a blogger in the city of Philadelphia, you may soon face a $300 tax for simply operating a blog regardless of how much money you make from doing so.

According to Aaron Proctor, who blogs at the Philadelphia Libertarian Examiner, “If your ’site is designed to make money’–and by City standards that means your site exists — then you must file for a ‘business privilege’ and pay the $300 to ‘run a business’ in this City.”

The city of Philadelphia considers any blog that has the ability to generate money as a ‘business’. Thus, the city is requiring people to pay $300 to register for a Business Privilege License–which allows the city government to have a registry of those potentially making money online. However, most of the bloggers affected by this generate little to no money.

As reported by the Philadelphia City Paper, tax attorney Michael Mandale of Center City law firm Mandale Kaufmann said, “Even though small-time bloggers aren’t exactly raking in the dough, the city requires privilege licenses for any business engaged in any ‘activity for profit’… [This applies] whether or not they earned a profit during the preceding year.”

The true goal of the city of Philadelphia here is to raise revenue from a source they currently aren’t. To those affected by this, this appears to be the city imposing a tax on free speech.
Get full story here.

Bernanke Must Raise Benchmark Rate 2 Points, Rajan Says

By Scott Lanman and Simon Kennedy

Raghuram Rajan accurately warned central bankers in 2005 of a potential financial crisis if banks lost confidence in each other. Now the International Monetary Fund’s former chief economist says the Federal Reserve should consider raising rates, even as almost 10 percent of the U.S. workforce remains unemployed.

Interest rates near zero risk fanning asset bubbles or propping up inefficient companies, say Rajan and William White, former head of the Bank for International Settlements’ monetary and economic department. After Europe’s debt crisis recedes, Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke should start increasing his benchmark rate by as much as 2 percentage points so it’s no longer negative in real terms, Rajan says.

“Low rates are not a free lunch, but people are acting as though they are,” said White, 67, who retired in 2008 from the Basel, Switzerland-based BIS and now chairs the Economic Development and Review Committee at the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. “There will be pressure on central banks to follow an expansionary monetary policy, and I worry that one can see the benefits, but what people inadequately appreciate are the downsides.”

He and Rajan will have the chance to make their case at the Fed’s annual symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, this week. In 2003, White told attendees central banks might need to raise rates to combat asset-price bubbles. In 2005, Rajan, 47, said risks in the banking system had increased. They were met with skepticism from then-Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan, 84, and Governor Donald Kohn, 67.
Get full story here.

Spike Lee emerges as the Ken Burns of Katrina filmmaking with powerful HBO documentary

if-god-is.jpgAs the fifth anniversary of the day Hurricane Katrina turned the Gulf Coast upside down approaches -- the actual day is next Sunday -- TV offers some amazing documentaries on the storm, its aftermath and its impact on us all.Here's capsule reviews of the best, including Spike Lee's amazing return to New Orleans:

If God Is Willing and Da Creek Don’t Rise, airs at 9 tonight and 9 p.m. Tuesday, HBO: Like a band-aid ripped from a still-tender wound, Spike Lee’s four-hour documentary about the five years after Katrina’s impact pokes at every way in which the attempt to recover from the hurricane’s damage went wrong. From harsh assessments of former Mayor C. Ray Nagin (one on camera voice called him the worst mayor in the city’s near-300-year history), to allegations the police let a man die to cover a botched shooting, Lee’s unblinking cameras detail the awful struggle toward rebuilding, set to mournful score by jazz master and Nawlins native Terence Blanchard.

Read More

DEA Seeking Experts in Ebonics for Narcotics Cases

By Allan Lengel
For AOL News
If you speak Ebonics, the federal government may have a job for you.
The Drug Enforcement Administration wants to hire people fluent in Ebonics to help monitor, transcribe and translate secretly recorded conversations in narcotics investigations, according to the website The Smoking Gun and DEA documents.

The Smoking Gun reports that up to nine Ebonics experts will work with the DEA Atlanta Division after obtaining “DEA Sensitive” security clearance.
Ebonics, or “Black English,” generally is defined as a nonstandard form of English spoken by African-Americans.
To read more click here.

LA Man Pleads Guilty to Selling Inside Stock Info on Walt Disney Co. to Undercover FBI Agents

By Allan Lengel

Yonni Sebbag won’t be going to Disney World any time soon. In fact, he’s probably going to a place far scarier.
On Monday, in New York, Yonni Sebbag, 30, of Los Angeles,  pleaded guilty to conspiring with his girlfriend to sell insider information about Walt Disney Co. stock, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Manhattan said.
Authorities say that Sebbag’s girlfriend Bonnie Hoxie, an assistant to Disney’s corporate communications chief, obtained confidential information about the company and gave it to Sebbag to sell.
Read more »

Attys for New Orleans Cops to Meet With Justice to Discuss Death Penalty Issue

By Allan Lengel

Attorneys for four current and ex-cops charged in the civilian Post-Katrina shootings on the Danziger Bridge will try and dissuade the Justice Department from seeking the death penalty, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reported.

The paper reports that attorneys are scheduled to meet with Justice Department officials Tuesday to discuss the matter.

It’s highly unusual for the feds to seek the death penalty against cops. The paper reports the only former cop on death row right now is a New Orleans officer Len Davis, “who ran a drug-protection racket in the mid-1990s and ordered the murder of a woman who filed a complaint to his superiors.”

Shirley Sherrod Stays Unemployed.

From The New York Daily News…

Shirley Sherrod will not return to the Department of Agriculture full-time, declines new job offer

By Sean Alfano

Shirley Sherrod, the government official forced to quit last month after being falsely accused of making racist comments, refused an offer to return to work at the USDA full-time.

Since the flap over her remarks, Sherrod has not appeared eager to take a new job with the agency. She held talks with Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack Tuesday.

“I just don’t think at this point with all that has happened,” she told reporters, though she admitted she was “tempted” to take the job.

Sherrod will remain affiliated with the agency as a consultant.

“I think I can be helpful to him (Vilsack) and the department if I just take a little break and look at how I can be more helpful in the future,” she said.

The incident in question began when conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart posted an edited clip of Sherrod talking about not helping a white farmer during a speech years before she joined the USDA.

The full clip, however, showed Sherrod making a larger point about moving beyond race.

The farmer’s wife came forward shortly after the firestorm erupted to say Sherrod helped her family save the farm.

Both the Obama administration and the NAACP apologized to Sherrod after the full scope of her remarks was revealed.

Prior to her resignation, Sherrod was the USDA’s director of rural development for Georgia. The job Vilsack offered her Tuesday is deputy directory for the Office of Advocacy and Outreach.

In a speech last month, Sherrod said she planned to sue Breitbart.

“I will definitely do it,” she said.

President Obama - Mr. Christian or Richard III? Two props of virtue for a Christian

President Barack Obama is either as lame a President as any Tom Clancy novel could conceive, or he is the most densely saturated egoist alive.

The Mosque Flap was a further indication of his gossamer epidermis and narrow ethical compass.

When confronted by hostile critics who howled that he was a Communist, FDR damned their eyes with " I am a Christian and a Democrat."

When confronted by any question, Barack Obama sets his purse puppies who controlled the Campaign of 2008- the Journolists/MSNBC/E.J. Dionne/Mo Dowd and other fatuous cheerleaders - unleashed to howl, explain, excoriate and compellingly illustrate that President Obama's troubles begin and end with the American People. He wants to enjoy his waffles!

Thus, Crazy Aunt Maureen Dowd -

The country is having some weird mass nervous breakdown, with the right spreading fear and disinformation that is amplified by the poisonous echo chamber that is the modern media environment.

The dispute over the Islamic center has tripped some deep national lunacy. The unbottled anger and suspicion concerning ground zero show that many Americans haven’t flushed the trauma of 9/11 out of their systems — making them easy prey for fearmongers.

Many people still have a confused view of Muslims, and the president seems unable to help navigate the country through its Islamophobia.

It is a prejudice stoked by Rush Limbaugh, who mocks “Imam Obama” as “America’s first Muslim president,” and by the evangelist Franklin Graham, who bizarrely told CNN’s John King: “I think the president’s problem is that he was born a Muslim. His father was a Muslim. The seed of Islam is passed through the father, like the seed of Judaism is passed through the mother.”

Really? I talk to Americans every day black, white, Christian, Jew and the odd Muslim. All are disappointed in President Obama. There is no "They" are out to get him. Universally, I hear, "Jesus, he had good PR, what a lame ass."

Is He Christian? The ONLY loudmouths questioning whether he is or not were and are the media cheerleaders poisoning the well long before any draught was quaffed.

Is He Muslim? Americans are only aping Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and . . .? Really?

Here in Chicago a few years back when I helped out Obama's run for Congress, Bobby Rush ran the dozens on weepy Barry by asking -

Is He Black Enough? The answer was a resounding no, in that race for Congress.

Is he a cry baby - Oh, hell yes! If the President actually owned a pair, he'd man up and shove his birth certificate where the sun never shines on Glenn Beck; take all of his grades from K-Graduate School and make Hannity eat them; drag Rush Limbaugh to morning prayer with him; and tell Bill O'Reilly face-to-face that his book is duller than Robert Gibbs - it is.

President Obama is a 46 year old, wildly ambitious cry-baby with far too many retainers around him. Goatee'd Chuck Todd on MSNBC proclaimed that not only is Barack Hussein Obama a Christian, but 'the most religious' President in modern history. Yip,Yip, Chuckie! Maureen Dowd screamed that Americans are a Herd. Maureen Dowd is a Shower.

Obama might be Mr. Christian. I think that he is really Richard III - Thus, Obama as Gloucester and the Media as Buckinham?Mayor/Catesby from Act III, sc vii -

Enter GLOUCESTER, in a gallery above, between
two Bishops. CATESBY returns.
May. See, where his Grace stands 'tween two
Buck. Two props of virtue for a Christian
To stay him from the fall of vanity;
And, see, a book of prayer in his hand;
True ornament to know a holy man.
Famous Plantagenet, most gracious prince,
Lend favourable ear to our requests,
And pardon us the interruption
Of thy devotion, and right Christian zeal.
Glo. My lord, there needs no such apology;
I do beseech your Grace to pardon me,
Who, earnest in the service of my God,
Deferr'd the visitation of my friends.
But, leaving this, what is your Grace's pleasure?
Buck. Even that, I hope, which pleaseth God
And all good men of this ungovern'd isle.
Glo. I do suspect I have done some offence
That seems disgracious in the city's eye;
And that you come to reprehend my ignorance.
Buck. You have, my lord: would it might
please your Grace,
On our entreaties to amend your fault.
Glo. Else wherefore breathe I in a Christian

One thing is for sure, Barack Obama is no American President.

Rep. Boehner to Call for Resignation/Firing of Obama’s Entire Economic Team — Update: Dems Respond; The Bad Economy is Bush’s Fault!

I’m still trying to figure out if Republican House Minority Leader John Boehner is being foolish or brilliant with this:
House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) will call Tuesday for the mass firing of the Obama administration’s economic team, including Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and White House adviser Larry Summers, arguing that November’s midterm elections are shaping up as a referendum on sustained unemployment across the nation and saying the “writing is on the wall.”
First of all, Obama’s economic team will not resign. For what reason? Doing exactly what they were charged with doing? And the only reason they’d be fired is if congressional Dems on the verge of a November slaughter convinced Obama to crapcan them as a sign that the Democrats are serious about turning the economy around (the fact that they’d be replaced by people at least as leftist/incompetent notwithstanding).

So what’s with Boehner’s demand? The Dems are twisting, and it’s too close to the midterm to make a difference. In fact, the best thing for Republicans would be for Obama to do nothing heading into November.
Maybe Boehner’s trying to prove the GOP is serious about turning the economy around even though they’re not in control — or maybe he’s certain Obama’s economic team won’t resign or be fired and this is a good way to point out the reasons for that.

In a political sense, I get a little uneasy when the team that appears to have a healthy lead going into an election starts giving pointers to the opposition, but maybe Boehner is placing country over politics — or maybe there’s something more.

The Dems will publicly laugh this off as a “there goes crazy John again” kind of thing, but anybody with eyes, ears and an at least semi-functioning brain knows he has a point.

There’s no disputing that Geithner & Company couldn’t run a lemonade stand without screwing it up, but Obama’s the one who put them where they are. The entire lot has to go or it won’t make a bit of difference.

Update: The White House already has written a predictable response to Boehner’s assertions that Obama’s economics team should resign because of the lousy economy: “The lousy economy is Bush’s fault!”

Boehner also needs to call for the firing of Obama’s “Blame Bush Czar.”

by columnist Doug Powers

.Mexican Police To Patrol NY?

In a series of events which has caused wide notice and a storm of protests, the government of Mexico, through its consulate in New York in the United Nations, has announced it will begin patrolling the New York City borough of Staten Island to “safeguard” its nationals there.

The actions of Mexico come after a series of incidents the Mexican government terms “bias attacks.”

Ironically, these so-called “hate crimes” have been perpetrated by blacks and Asians, indicative of rising tensions between various ethnic groups in the U.S. The Catholic Examiner and NBC New York both reported the Mexican government’s intention to mount surveillance, patrol and police in and around the Staten Island community of Port Richmond, which in recent years has seen a large influx of Mexican illegal immigrants.

Since the Examiner’s coverage, however, councilor officials, city hall and the local press have begun to carefully de-emphasize any possible role of Mexican law enforcement or military in efforts to secure the neighborhood.'