Saturday, October 30, 2010

Best Job Ever

I am pretty happy with my job - I am retired.  If you can afford it, there's not much of a down side to being retired.  But, if I could have any job, it would be Ex-President.  Now keep in mind I would never want to be president.  That's the shittiest job in the world. Way too stressful.  That's why I would rather be part time King. But, if you some how manage to live through your presidency, the best job awaits you.

Want proof?  Check out the front roll of tonight's (Saturday) World Series game.  Who do you find -- you guested it, George W. Bush.  Now most of the people in the front row probably paid several thousand dollars for their tickets -- want to guest what Bush paid for his.  Nothing.  When you're an ex-president you can score the best tickets for any event - World Series, Super Bowl, Final 4, Broadway Plays, you name it, and I guarantee you some one will comp you.  Want to travel somewhere, no problem.  Corporations will send you their private jet.  You have the chance to live out your dreams for free.

To make things even better, they give you a small pension -- currently $191,300 and throw in $20,000 for your wife.  You also get a generous expense account.  Example, President Clinton's phone bill for 2008 was $79,000. When I am King, I am hoping my subjects will push through a plan for me.  Nothing big, just a chance to play golf at Augusta National.  I'll be happy.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Bully School Board Member

When I was a teacher, I had no use for school board members.  Most of them had a hidden agenda - i.e. get my kid more playing time on the basketball team -- get a certain teacher fired -- provide me a stepping stone in politics, etc.  But there's a moron school board member in Arkansas named Clint McCance that has created a new despicable low.  He posted on Facebook that he was happy when gay kids killed themselves.  Watch this report and judge for yourself

I can actually say I knew school board members who were this bigoted, but none this stupid.  In our country, you have free speech that gives you protection from an oppressive government.  But, the first amendment does not protect you form public scorn.  People can form judgements about your character, wisdom, integrity, and intelligence (or lack of).  There should be a popular up rising to get this bum off the school board.

In these troubled times, we need our schools to teach tolerance.  Having ass hole bigots like Clint McCance on the school board sends the message that bullying is acceptable.  It's not.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

I Hate Coupons

I do all the grocery shopping at my house.  I have to admit, I am pretty good at it.  I have a computerized shopping list that allows me to be organized and allows me to know where to find every item.  My trick to a successful shopping day is to get to the store before my wife hands me a fist full of coupons.  I really hate coupons.  Sure they help you save money, but I find them to be a major pain in the ass. Here is a small list of why I dislike them so much.
  • I walk out of the house and forget to take them.  My wife will quickly point how much I could have saved. This makes me feel like a failure and reinforces my belief that no good deed goes unpunished.
  • You won't believe this, but sometimes I take the coupons and forget to use them.  When this happens, I usually try to throw them away before I get home.  I know, I know, -- I could take them back with the receipt and still get the discount, but I hate admitting I screwed up. After all, my self esteem is worth something.
  • I end up buying things I normally wouldn't buy.  I am sure that makes some company happy, but it pisses me off when I throw it way later because no one liked it.
  • Sometimes it hard to find the product being featured by the coupon.  I already know where my usual products are located, why do I want to play hide and seek?
  • I hate getting stuck behind some one at checkout that has a ton of coupons.  First, the cashier has to scan them all, but secondly there's always a couple coupons past their expiration date, or not valid for some reason and the person checking out want to return or get some additional items. This is when I am glad I don't believe in guns.
When I am King, I am going to have all the grocery stores go to a new system.  It's called, Lower The Prices.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Get Out and Vote

When I was about 10 years old, I over heard part of my father's conversation with a neighbor.  They were discussing politics and I am pretty sure I had no idea what they were talking about.  Suddenly my father brought the conversation to a screeching halt with a very direct question -- "Did You Vote"?  Of course the neighbor hadn't.  My father then dismissed him by saying -- "If you didn't vote, you have no right to bitch".

On this topic, I always thought my old man was  a 100% spot on.  It's easy to sit on the sideline and take shots at everyone.  But, if you don't like how things are, be part of the solution instead of part of the problem.  The least you could do is vote.  You don't even have to go to the polls, just get an absentee ballot and vote by mail.

I see President Obama is out visiting colleges trying to get young people to vote.  It seems that the very people who were instrumental in the president's victory, are now contemplating sitting out the election.  Are you guys nuts.  You might be disillusioned about the president's ability to deliver his agenda, but take a moment to check out the other side.  The Republicans have spent the last two years just saying no to everything except when it comes to giving tax cuts to the wealthiest 2%. Well trust the King, the other side will give you plenty to bitch about if they become the majority party.   

Remember my dad's admonishment, If you don't vote, don't bitch.  Now get off your ass and go vote!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Supreme Court Term

In college I took a couple classes in constitutional law.  It was interesting to read old cases and study the reasoning used in making decisions.  I was amazed how many justices would make decisions that ran counter to their political views.  My favorite was Earl Warren in the Brown v The Board of Education case. 

I found it interesting because of the soul searching of  Chief Justice Earl Warren.  Warren was the former governor of California.  He was a middle of the road to conservative Republican.  Most though he would end up as Eisenhower's Vice President.  But, Ike picked Richard Nixon for the V.P. slot and promised a disappointed Warren an appointment to the bench later on.  Little did Ike know, that the first opening would be the position of Chief Justice.  The president tried to back out of his commitment, but eventually kept his word and made the appointed.

Eisenhower considered it the worse decision of his presidency.  Because Warren had a life time term, he made decisions without worrying  about politics.  This is how the system was suppose to work.  Boy have things change.  Now justices vote a long straight political lines.  The new strategy for appointments is to send justices to the Supreme Court at an early age and make damn sure  their political ideology  is aligned to the party  in power.  This way you know what you're getting (no Warren surprises) and you can count on them for 25 or 30 years.

I am now rethinking my view on the life time appointment.  I am not sure it produces the desired out come -- decisions base on the facts of law. I think there should be an age requirement and a fixed term.  When I am King, a justices will have to be at least 55 years old and will serve a term of 15 years.  Hopefully, there are still some prospective justices out there who are willing to follow their conscience and the law,  instead of an ideology.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Re-Post "If I Were King"

 I thought it would be a good idea to re-publish my introduction post.  It seems that some people take me a little too serious. Hopefully this will give people a better idea where I am coming from.  Sorry if I pissed anyone off. 

First of all, let me assure you that I do believe in democracy. But from time to time, I just wish I was in charge so I could bring about some type of change without giving a damn about numerous ass kissing procedures to make it happen. Hence, I want to be an occasional King and not a President. I want to see a wrong, or just something that pisses me off, and come up with automatic solutions. However, sometimes I just like to shout out my own opinions. My family will assure you I don’t have a shortage of opinions. Some you might agree with, some you shouldn’t. Others might get you thinking about your own take on a particular subject.

Kings can have an opinion on anything and most people won’t tell them they’re full of it. But, don’t worry if you disagree with me, I promise not to behead you. Hell, my own family thinks I am nuts from time to time. Sometimes I just like to tell a story. It might be a story about an event in my life. I might want to talk about a book I recently read. Who knows? Basically I like to talk about politics, social wrongs, sports and other things that drive my family from the room. If I Were King, they would have to stay and listen – followed by a quiz.

Sunday, October 17, 2010


Today I had a great time at my twin grandson's birthday party.  It is wonderful to see their growth and development.  You see, they were born premature.  They weighed just a fraction over two pounds at birth. There was a time when their life was touch and go.  But thanks to science, they enjoyed their third birthday today.  You would never know that they fought so hard for life.

Their birthday party was like many kids party. Lots of grandparents, uncles, aunts, and one great grandmother were in attendance.  Gifts were plentiful and watching the kids reactions was priceless.  My son wondered how long they would have interest in all the toys, before they started looking forward to Christmas.  I had to give my son a reality check and remind him how many kids don't have loving parents able to dote on them.  Science might have given them life, but loving care has made them into such wonderful kids.

When I am King, I won't be able to guarantee every child a loving support system, but I wish I could.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Political Ads

I don't know about you, but I am really sick of political election ads on TV.  Each election ad uses some actors to make it sound like the end of the world is about to happen if we elect the wrong person.  Kind of a modern day "chicken little" plot.  Most are outright lies and distortions.  Both parties use them and they all suck.  Worst of all, they start two to three months before the election and they're on constantly.  Making matters worse, our Supreme Court has ruled that corporations have no financial limits on campaign donations.  Seems bribing candidates is now called "free speech".  This means you can fund all the ads you want and you really don't even have to disclose where the money is coming from. 

Well enough all ready.  When I am King, all political ads will be allowed on TV only during the last two weeks of the campaign. TV stations will be allowed to sponsor as many debates as they want.  Debates are great because you learn a lot about each candidate's views and philosophy.  But, best of all, you can change the channel.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Tear Down This Wall

Recently I viewed a documentary on the U. S. border fence being erected along the Mexican-U.S. border.  The purpose of the fence is to keep Mexicans from entering our country illegally. It's not doing too good of job.  It seems that it is quite easy to take out a map and a marker and draw a line where the fence should go -- all 1,950 miles of it.  Building it is a little bit harder.

Some areas, the land is relatively flat and not much of a challenge.  Other areas are some of the most god awful landscape you've ever seen and the task is a lot more difficult.  So difficult, that the fence just stops.  A little farther down the line it starts up again.  All total, only about a third of the fence is completed. 

Even if the fence was  100% completed (something that will probably never happen) it does little to stop the flow of illegal immigrants into the United States.  The documentary showed video of people routinely scaling the fence and hustling off to a better life in America.  You see, where there's a will, there's a way. 

This whole project is a colossal waste of money and an extreme cause of environmental destruction.  Instead of building a fence, we need to make it less attractive for illegals to come to America.  We can do this by attacking the people who give them jobs.  When I am King, I will severely punish those who employ undocumented workers.  I'll start with a $10,000 per worker fine for first offenders and mandatory jail time for repeat offenders.

To paraphrase a former president, "Mr. Obama, tear down this wall."

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Giving Back

In my first life, I was a basketball coach.  I loved basketball.  It's a great game that requires a lot of strength, quickness, agility and determination.  Coaching the sport is quite demanding.  Especially learning how to coach in the first place.

Most people think the jump from playing basketball to coaching basketball is easy.  Trust me, it's just the opposite.  Most great basketball players make really lousy coaches.  That's because there's a big difference between playing and teaching.  Things that came easy for a gifted athlete are difficult to teach to an average athlete.  That's why early in my career I went to every basketball clinic I could find.  I listened to some of the greatest coaches talk on a multitude of basketball topics.  I also developed the knack of picking the brain of every coach I met at those clinics.  Over time, I learned how to coach.

Yesterday, I served as a guest lecturer at a coaching class at Lewis University.  The class is taught by my good friend Dr. Ralph Miller.  Ralph and I coached together at South Suburban Community College for a few years.  We had great success, finishing 3rd and 4th in the nation on two occasions.  Dr. Miller is now retired from coaching but still teaches at Lewis University.  He asks me, as well as other coaches, to lecture his class every year.  Each year it's a pleasure to give back some of the knowledge that I stole from others along the way.  Giving back is also selfish -- It makes me feel good. When I am King, I'll encourage everyone to give back.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Justice For All

What if I told you, you could rob a bank and 75% of the time the bank wouldn't report the crime.  Furthermore, what if I told you that even if the bank did report the robbery, the police department wouldn't do follow up forensic work because they lacked the budget or personnel to do so.  You might decide on a career change.  Robbing banks wouldn't look like such a risky adventure.

Sad, but true, that's what happens in most rape cases.  The vast majority of all rape cases aren't reported, because most women don't think a successful prosecution will occur.  Even when they do report the crime, crime labs don't always process the rape kits in a timely manner, thereby limiting the odds of a successful prosecution.  It's estimated that there are over 100,000 rape kits sitting in warehouses waiting to be processed.  Many crime labs have backlogs of five to ten years. 

New York City's successful prosecution rate in rape cases went from 40% to 70% when they started testing every booked rape kit. Los Angeles has recently started processing all rape kits and has seen similar results.  Soon, Illinois will begin to clear up their back log and begin testing all rape kits.

When I am King, I'll make sure we won't turn our back on rape victims because we can't afford it -- that's just despicable.  We should have justice for all, not just those that fit into the budget.