Friday, May 25, 2007

Personal Asides: Immigration Bill Will be McCain’s Undoing. Giuliani Doing an About Face on Issue Smacks of Romney--Who, Incidentally, Seems to be Rising…”Your Hit Parade” Trivia.


Immigration and McCain.

This is a personal take. The Senate immigration bill may well be John McCain’s undoing. What he needed least of all at this time is an issue that separates him from the conservatives of his party. The one issue he is identified with that the GOP base likes is pro-life. Everything else has turned out to be ashes in the mouth of the Republican electorate. The McCain-Feingold act is poison. His failure to support Bush’s tax cuts…pretending that his big objection has been failure to cut spending is not sustainable since he used the Left’s class warfare rhetoric, complaining that the rich got undeserved breaks when any examination of the budget shows the rich pay 90% of the freight. His fore-square support for the Iraq War doesn’t really take off because while the base wants to win the War it is not cheerleading for it. It could well be that what we’re seeing is the self-immolation of John McCain.

Rudy had a pretty good week at the South Carolina debates when he objected to Ron Paul’s presentation. In fact, the best thing that could happen to Rudy has lain at his feet and he hasn’t picked it up. Paul has challenged Rudy to debate the war. That’s a perfect format for Rudy—playing to his strength. That’s a scenario where Rudy can’t possibly be hurt. Paul has some following among the paleos but his priorities for government involvement are such that Rudy could easily knock him out of the park. Unless he’s afraid that Paul might knock him out of the park. If that’s what he’s worried about, he’s too timid to be a presidential candidate—or a president, for that matter.

Now Rudy has taken a sharp turn and has rejected the Senate immigration bill. All of us who were at Dave McSweeney’s fund-raiser where Rudy did so well remember that when I asked him the immigration question, he supported the concepts that he now disowned. I think the abortion issue wouldn’t necessarily kill him if…if he had stuck firm to his pledge to name strict constructionists to the Court. But by declaring that a strict constructionist could also embrace “Roe” as well as oppose it, he nullified himself seriously. There was a time when some of Rudy’s advisers urged him to go the Romney route and embrace pro-life. He could have had a great rationale: that 9/11 brought home to him as never before the fragility of human life. When he was flirting with that option, I felt he had some attraction…for me as well. But holding on to the old pro-abort label, saying that the Constitution gives a poor woman the right to expect federal funding for abortion (ridiculous) and his bobbling the strict constructionist issue looks like downers to me.

The guy who seems to be coming on is Mitt Romney. No reasonable critic can believe that previous positions on social issues should be held against him…given that he was governor of Massachusetts, the most liberal state in the nation and now runs for president. You can say his opinions changed at politically convenient times and they have: along with every other presidential candidate since Thomas Jefferson who espoused strict construction and then consummated the greatest loose construction gamut in history—the Louisiana Purchase. Increasingly I think Romney is running the winning campaign. He may not win the nomination but his campaign is expressing the clearest rhetoric. If you disagree or agree, tell me.

Lucky Strike Hit Parade. Memory, not Search Engines.

No one can legitimately be called an old duffer without knowing something of “Your Hit Parade.” The radio series started on April 20, 1935 when I was age 7 on NBC’s “Red Network” and during the next two years both NBC and CBS carried it until `37 when it landed on CBS Saturdays. Ten years later it veered back to NBC.

The TV version began in 1950 as a simulcast of the radio program. By 1953 the radio version was canceled. The show continued on NBC until 1958; then back to CBS until it was canceled in 1959. Enough of these dull facts. Here are some questions. He or she who gets them all right without search engines will get a cup of coffee from me…free…if and when you collar me in Chicago—either at the Chicago Athletic Club or the Skyline, two of my favorite hangouts. All set? Here are the questions.

1. The TV cast featured—give me their last names: singers Dorothy_____; Snooky ______; Gisele _________ and Russell _______.

2. The TV bandleader was ____________. He was married to _______.

3. The announcer for radio and TV was a famous name with a wonderful voice: Andre ___________.

4. The most memorable feature of the TV show was its opening with the voice of a ____________. (Two words).

5. “Your Hit Parade” changed its name to “The ______ _____ Hit

Parade.” Supply the two words.

6. What killed the “Hit Parade”? (Three words).

7. In that connection, the final demise came when a Hit Parade singer tried to duplicate a fast-rising national singing phenomenon and struck out so dismally that the show was virtually laughed out of existence. Who was the Hit Parade singer, what phenomenon was being duplicated and what was the song? (I happened to see that particular show).

For me, a geezer patriarch these aren’t tough. We’ll see how many real trivia experts there are.


  1. If Romney were to appoint another Souter or Kennedy to the SCOTUS, it would alienate the party base and guarantee him one-term status - and, he undoubtedly knows this. I am inclined to trust him more than Giuliani or McCain to appoint originalist justices.

    The ultimate test of his electability will be the South Carolina primary, partly because that will reveal whether his religion will be a factor.

    As for the trivia questions, I couldn't hazard the wildest guess at any of them. I assume none of the answers would include Kasey Kasum (incidentally, the most famous member of the Druze religion in America).

  2. 1- Snooky Lanson / Gisele McKenzie

    2- Harry James / Betty Grable

  3. Never has an issue stirred up Mr. and Mrs. John Q. Public of the vast middle class more than the immigration issue. It is a literal populist uprising.

    It is one issue where people have really seen first hand the failure of the government, the government's encouragement of law breaking, and duplicity of so called "homeland security". Many people have lost their good paying jobs to trade deals only to move into the service sector like home remodeling only to find illegals in the field. Or they (computer programmers) have been up against the wage lowering effects of H1B Visas.

    They have noticed the code breaking as too many people are squeezed into one home with too many cars, kids, etc. They have seen their taxes increase to support the illegal immigration effects from school expense to incarceration expense. Essentially the issue boils down to the old saying, "Its the Economy Stupid". I have never in years seen so many people riled up over an issue!

    They have seen the lack of assimilation as the PC crowd pushes diversity on them.

    And these people Blame BUSH, those turncoat Repbulicans like McCain, and the Dems and the Neo-Conservative intellecuals who promoted the globalist idea of "open borders".

    Their main issue is that the United States standard of living is being dragged down by the wage lowering agenda of the elite.

    AND THEY ARE DAMN MAD ABOUT IT! Politicians and Pundits and Intellectuals had better take not because this time the conservatives and many average people in this populist uprising may just take a tip from the civil rights movement and engage in civil disobedience to stop the "fast track" of the cute crowd who is forcing this on them.

    They have to play by the rules and they are insensed that the government allows for whatever reason a group to NOT play by the rules, to not assimilate, and to NOT pay taxes!

  4. Answers:

    1) Collins
    MacKenzie (nee "Marie LaFouche")

    2) Raymond Scott
    Dorothy Collins

    3) Andre LaRouche

    4) tobacco auctioneer

    5) Lucky Strike

    6) Rock n' Roll

    7) This one I'm not sure about but I think it was Snooky Lanson's misbegotten attempt to imitate Elvis Presley singing Hound Dog.

    "So long for a while...."