Friday, June 29, 2007

Personal Asides: It’s Tom Cross and Russ Stewart on Sunday’s “Shootout”…Introduction of Cardinal George Last Night…More Nonsense from Christopher Hitchens on Atheism…Oregon’s Version of Catholic Citizens…Liberals’ Plans to Neuter Talk Radio.


Cross and Stewart.

House Republican leader Tom Cross (R- Oswego) will be paired with indomitable questioner Russ Stewart (attorney and Nadig newspaper political analyst) Sunday. This will be the first time relentless questions have been directed at the top GOP leader on his earlier proposal to do a one-month budget, the defection of Rep. Paul Froehlich (R-Schaumburg) to the Democrats, intra-party wrangling over Kirk Dillard’s Obama commercial praising the Democratic presidential candidate and other things. That’s this Sunday at 8 p.m. on WLS-AM (890).

George Introduction.

I introduced Francis Cardinal George to the Chicago Legatus chapter last night at the Park Ridge country club with these words:

“If you read the `Sun-Times’ this morning you know that in addition to having two doctorates and being able to speak four languages, our speaker conducted the Morman Tabernacle Choir last night at Ravinia, an unique exemplar of ecumenism. And ecumenism…the willingness of various faiths to get along while pursuing different means to save souls…is an essential part of our country’s heritage.

“It brings to mind Knute Rockne who, as you know, was born in Norway a Protestant, was reared in Logan Square, attended Notre Dame, played football, taught chemistry there, became a football coach and converted to the Catholic faith. And as history records when he took over direction of the team, the then small college racked up impressive wins. One of the most hotly fought contests was always between Notre Dame and Southern Methodist.

“After several years, word reached the president of Notre Dame, Fr. Cavanaugh, that in firing up his team, Rockne was applying religious fervor to the game, telling his young players to defeat those Methodists for the honor and glory of the Catholic church.

“Fr. Cavanaugh was appalled at the lack of ecumenism. He called Rockne in and said that the next time Notre Dame plays Southern Methodist which would be in South Bend, Notre Dame would sponsor a joint ecumenical dinner for players of both teams on the night before the game. The priest ordered Rockne to deliver the keynote which would stress religious unity—and in the keynote this sentence would have to be incorporated: `God doesn’t care who wins the game between Notre Dame and Southern Methodist.’

“Rockne grudgingly agreed. When the schedule for Notre Dame to meet Southern Methodist came round, the two teams and their supporters met for dinner the night before the game in the main dining hall of Notre Dame. Fr. Cavanaugh introduced both coaches and then asked Coach Rockne to give the keynote.

“Rockne meandered a bit saying that the purpose of football is to build good sportsmanship, to use athletics to beat down animosity, to fight hard but also be gentlemen. Then he uttered the words Fr. Cavanaugh gave him: `After all, God doesn’t care who wins the game between Notre Dame and Southern Methodist.’

“There was a murmur of approval and a light scattering of applause. Then Rockne added: `God doesn’t care who wins, but His Mother does!’

Thus it is with this spirit of ecumenism that I have the great honor and high privilege of presenting the Archbishop of Chicago, Francis Cardinal George!”

More Nonsense.

Several days ago I told you of my trip to Barnes & Noble and my browsing through a handbook of atheism by Christopher Hitchens entitled “God is Not Great.” I answered some of his more ridiculous assertions. Yesterday, on my next trip to Barnes & Noble, like a horsefly drawn to manure, I picked up the book again and leafed through it. Here’s one: “Religion does not have the confidence in its own various preachings, even to allow coexistence between different faiths.” I thought immediately of the hundreds of interdenominational prayer breakfasts and the frequent marches against abortion including the massive one conducted each January 22 in Washington, D. C. where tens of thousands of Christians, Protestants and Jews—including Buddhists for Life—walk and pray together.

Another: “It goes without saying that none of the gruesome, disordered events described in Exodus every took place…All five bo9oks of Moses are an ill-carpentered fiction.” But this blanket statement flies in the face of the most complete biblical history including studies conducted by Robert Wilson of Princeton who knew 26 ancient languages and dialects so that could read fragments from the ancient Near East. Wilson was impressed with the accuracy of the biblical accounts. Also he disregards the fact that while in the 19th century, scholars believed the Hittites did not exist nor rulers as Belshazzar of Babylon or Sargo of Assyria, archeologists have now found records of these civilizations.

Oregon Catholic Citizens.

Oregon Catholic Citizens, an organization modeled after our own Catholic Citizens of Illinois, is pressing Portland archbishop John Vlazny urging him to replace his lay chancellor, Mary Jo Tully on the grounds that Tully has indicated in phone calls and email messages that she does not uphold the teachings of the Catholic Church. The bill of particulars published in “The Wanderer,” the oldest national Catholic weekly in the country, is almost unassailable.

OCC is an effective arm of the Church Militant. But one thing that is heartening is that compared with Portland’s chancellor, Chicago’s (Jimmy Lago) is not at odds with Church teaching.

So you see, Jimmy, don’t say you can’t get a fair rap on this website.

Neutering Talk Radio.

There is little doubt that with the defeat of the Bush immigration bill which was eagerly supported by Ted Kennedy liberals, blame will be placed for supposed “bias” on talk radio. Our own homegrown Lefty diaper baby, Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Illinois) has already prepared legislation in that regard. As a talk show host myself, I know that the preponderance of AM listeners prefer conservative flavor to the issues—although in presenting broadcast journalism on state and local issues, I strive to have both sides represented and the program is well received. But when I had longer than an hour…especially on Saturday mornings from 8 to noon…I pretty much ran the show myself with the exception of an hour.

One point is: perfect objectivity is almost impossible to present…and were it possible to do so, it would be ungodly boring. A second: in the full panoply of opinion presentation, the networks favor liberal issue formulation; public radio, as we all know, favors liberal formulation (despite the fact that it’s aided by public funds, which it shouldn’t be). Most large metropolitan newspapers favor liberal formulation. Glossy magazines, “Time,” “Newsweek” and “U. S. News” are liberal. Cable is mixed. Fox favors a mix but I think it’s fair to say it comes down often on the conservative side (exception: where Fox supported immigration reform). CNN has liberal formulation as do MSNBC, CNBC.

I remember some years ago when my radio employer tried to encourage liberal radio and hired several protagonists. They all bombed. The fault wasn’t with them but the heavy ballast of listeners wanted conservative views.

Anyhow the next big battle will be over trying to impose the misstated “Fairness Doctrine” on broadcast radio. Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nevada) used the elitist look-down-your-nose snobbery tactic yesterday by telling the Senate that “talk radio” is “simplistic.” That’s the common usage of the word when applied to conservative thought and rationale. I’ve listened to Daniel Schorr on Public Broadcasting for years and on CBS before that…beginning when he tried to blacken Goldwater as having ties to Nazi propagandists. That wasn’t simplistic. Oh no. Have you noticed that not only are conservatives “simplistic,” all Republican presidents have been. Dwight Eisenhower was a addled-minded inactive chairman of the board…until we found out in the “Hidden Hand Presidency” that he was extraordinarily active…JFK was a genius…LBJ was compassionate…Nixon was an ogre and also a simplistic racist...Ford was a doddering bumbler who couldn’t stand up without falling down…Carter was of course a mega-master of details stemming from his background as a nuclear engineer…wait a minute he wasn’t an engineer at all. Reagan was an amiable dunce. Bush was an amiable preppy…Clinton was a genius of politics…George W. Bush a dolt.

All tarred with the same brush of being simplistic. Talk radio is simplistic because it’s conservative. I may be wrong but I think I have the more comprehensive radio program on state and local topics than is afforded on public radio. Or am I just an egoist? Your comments?


  1. Re-publishing something you have decided is "almost unassailable" -- that's the road to the sin of detraction if not outright calumny. You should at least remove and, preferably, retract the remarks about Mary Jo Tully unless you are able to publish these views as fact.

  2. Yes Tom, your radio show is up there for state and local issues. "State Week in Review" and "At Issue" are good as well, but it's no shootout.

  3. I assume Cross will be coming on your show to brag about how he is stopping tax increases in Springfield.

    Please, please Tom, point out the obvious. Cross is now against an income tax increase because he's following the lead of Madigan, and Blago is committed to keeping his promise of NO income or sales tax increase. Even Cross isn't dumb enough to push a tax increase when the biggest Dems are against.

    And GRT? Madigan's Dems led the charge stopping that too.

    And if Cross is so anti-tax, why did he support Topinka in the primary, a candidate who likely would have already raised taxes had she won? She also would already be breaking ground on new casinos.

    And Tom Cross anti-tax? What a joke! He voted for Blago's 300 tax and fee increases at the start of his term in 2003, AND Cross also voted for the $10 BILLION in new debt that year.

    You should also ask Cross how in the world he justifies having Skip Saviano as Chairman of the House Republican Organization (HRO). Saviano not only gives tons of money to liberal Dems, he works against good Republicans in campaigns and helps guys like his old crony (and former employer) James DeLeo.

    If the show is just going to be a big love fest with Tom Double Cross, my radio will be going off.

  4. Yes, Tom, you have a terrific show. But of late I have noticed how soft you have become. It seems that maybe you foresee the coming of the fairness doctrine and do not want to be in trouble!

    Stop the softballs and pin these crooks down - Illinois politicians are now officially confirmed as the worst!

  5. Tom Cross is not a Republican in my book. In addition to the above comments, Tom Cross sponsored a bill thate would set up an institue to award grants for embryonic stem cell research. When are elected Republicans going to act like Republicans? Now that is a great question for Mr. Cross.

  6. While I'll be out on Crystal Lake getting ready to watch the fireworks, I hope you will note that when riverboat casinos came to Illinois not one House Republican voted for them.

    Now, however, the House Republicans are pinning financing of a road program and school construction subsidies.

    And, please don't let him get off the air without asking how many Republicans are going to vote to double RTA sales taxes in what is left of the suburban collar county Republican bases. The money, of course, will go primarily to the CTA, as RTA funding has since 1974.

  7. Ask him if he thinks having a Protect Marriage advisory referendum on the ballot in 2008 would help elect Republican Illinois House and Senate candidates.

  8. Ask Tom Cross if he'll do one honest thing in his mostly worthless political career. Will he do us all a favor and follow Paul Froehlich's lead by putting a "D" by his name? He should do something honest for a change, like Paul did.

  9. Tom, you also need to ask Cross what in the world he was thinking in 2005 when he assigned Chris Lauzen's SB600 (the direct election bill) to his crony Skip Saviano in the House, after it had passed unanimously in the State Senate. Saviano is on the Central Committee, has always been against the reform for obvious selfish reasons, and had no intention of ever allowing the bill to see the light of day. Plus, Saviano is really a Democrat anyway.

    Cross knew all this. He doesn't want the reform either, because the pals of his old wrestling coach (Hastert) are against Republicans having more of a voice.

    But instead of arguing his case like a man, Cross and Saviano just killed the bill in a dishonest way. Cross then tried to tell Republicans it was Mike Madigan's fault.

    Republicans would be much better off if this dishonest excuse for an official just went to the other side.

  10. Well what did the Nazi's do? THEY SHUT DOWN DISSENT! Why would someone like Jan want to take away the "free speech" atmosphere of Talk Radio? She above all should know just how important "free speech" is especially speech you don't agree with! Come on Jan, if you don't like "talk radio" then just turn it off! If you don't like Limbaugh's, Savage's, Medved's, or Roeser's show, just don't listen to them Jan! Just what is your agenda? Come on Jan, ARE YOU A NAZI?
    If you arn't Jan, then stop acting like one!

    It is interesting how the liberals where ever they are whether it is in the class room, church, media, or politics ALWAYS want to shut down DISSENT to THEIR ideas!

    Look how the feminists used the RICO laws to shut down anti-abortion protests!

    Can't you just wait to see how these people will use the Patriot act to shut down YOU!

    But then now I see Prez Bush acting like a liberal cavorting with Kennedy and Trent Lott wanting to "do something about Talk Radio"..... Just what the H is going on here?.... Well the Libs got the newpapers and main line television anchors like Couric (all losing audience) and the Conservatives have the internet and talk radio..... BUT Libs and globalist control freaks like Bush and Lott want it all!