Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Personal Aside: If Quinn Picks Garrett He’ll Get Another Betsy McCaughey…Jack Roeser for GOP National Committeeman.

    Feast of Gabriel the Archangel.*
                                      Another Betsy.
            The widely publicized and devastating crack made by multi-millionaire Democrat (the press calls her a “millionaire” but in Lake Forest they’re dime a dozen) State Sen. Susan Garrett yesterday that Pat Quinn hasn’t cut enough budget to warrant asking for a tax increase should…if Quinn is sane…warrant her being dropped from consideration as lieutenant governor.  If not and Quinn goes ahead and picks her, he will have himself to blame if he gets a Democratic version of Betsy McCaughey (pronounced “Mc-Coy”).  
            McCaughey was a fresh-faced, brilliant young thing when she blossomed out of the blue as Republican George Pataki’s pick for lieutenant governor of New York when Pataki ran for governor the first time in 1995.  Pataki chose her because she had gained national attention for a brilliant article she wrote skewering the Clinton health program in of all publications The New Republic. 
         Her article based on her reading the 2000-plus page legislation was such a bombastic hit that writer Tom Wolfe said that with one article she “shot down the Clinton blimp.”  Appearing everywhere on TV during the battle over HillaryCare, McCaughey struck Pataki as the kind of free-form, non-political young woman who would appeal to soccer Moms.  
            After all, why not?  She was born middle class in Pittsburgh to a family where the father was a maintenance engineer (read: janitor) at a nail-clipper manufacturing company.  She got a scholarship to Vasser where she got an MA in American history, leveraging that to another scholarship at Columbia where she got her Ph.D in constitutional law.  Beaming, witty, irreverent with flaming red hair she became the talk of the conservative movement and Pataki needed some pzazzz on the ticket. 
             They were elected and he got the pzaazz.  As the media covered her as a refreshingly candid lieutenant governor, she was quoted incessantly about how Pataki and his administration wasn’t cutting it.  They fought brilliantly: Betsy won all rounds and to show her independence, when Pataki delivered his State of the State and she was presiding, she kept standing up in defiance.     
             So much for the refreshing blast of fresh air.  She was dropped from the ticket when Pataki ran for reelection. Now she has a talk show in New York.   
             Quinn can do what he wants but if he goes Susan Garrett, he ought to know that he is no match whatsoever for this smart, educated, un-programmed liberal.   Can you imagine him answering her by droning on how he disagrees with her because everyday, ordinary, regular working people in the Land of Lincoln where the governor’s mansion is the people’s house…you know. 
              Go ahead, Pat.  Pick her.   For one thing, she’s right that you haven’t cut enough. She’ll make an ass of you very shortly…unlike Betsy McCaughey who waited until after election to do it. 
                                          Why I’m for Jack Roeser. 
               People acquainted with the both of us…Jack and I…know that we’ve had our ups and downs over some aspects of politics—but never over principle.  Since our first encounter Jack and I made up…then we had another bout of disagreements and made up again…vowing never to disagree—then we did and have had a great time with the controversies we have engendered. 
                I don’t have to tell you that Jack and I aren’t related even though we have the same surname.  Jack’s paternal people come from Luxembourg which has a town namedRoeser population 642. My paternal people come from Wurzburg, Bavaria, Germany but no town or even hamlet is named after any one of us.  Reason: we are all placid farmers and serfs who worked for the Prince who owned the castle on the hill.  On my trip to Bavaria I saw the castle and the dingy place where the Roesers began.  
                 Now Jack and I are where both of us want to be…friends and conversation partners…debaters, partners, sometimes disputants but always…always…friends. 
            Jack is an engineering genius and a down home political philosopher.  I’m for him for many of which is that the Illinois Republican party needs someone with youthful verve, vigor and the enthusiasm of a virile stripling. The fact that Jack is all these things makes me think that…as a young sprout myself… if I continue to apply myself like Jack has, maybe I, too, will make something of myself.  
             Jack is being opposed by…guess who?...Jim Oberweis whose win-loss record is something like 0 for 9.  
            That should make it easy, Jack.  Go to it and God bless you.  The party sorely needs you.               
       *: The Archangel Gabriel. Angels, as Ernie used to tell us, are meant to be mediators, designed to express the will of God.  They’re shown as messengers and appeared in Western art before AD 600.  Before Constantine they were painted without wing.  But Archangels are one step higher: Michael driving Satan into hell; Raphael healing the blind Tobit.  And then we get to Gabriel, one of seven. He appeared to Daniel and explained a vision about future events (“You are a man specially chosen”),  In the New Testament he appeared to Zachary to announce that Elizabeth, his wife would bear a son and his name should be John. 
          And it was Gabriel who appeared to Mary and told her that she would conceive and bear a son whom she must name Jesus. Theology tells Catholics that an angel is a pure spirit with no body, who does not depend for his existence on matter. The Bible tells us that angels constitute a vast multitude beyond human reckoning. An Archangel is a chief or ruling angel.  In a wider sense, an archangel is of higher rank: Michael is an archangel although he is the prince of the Seraphim.  The name Angel applies only to one who has remained faithful to God—however devils are also angels by nature but are not called as such. . “Angel” is the special name for the choir of angelic spirits from whom guardian angels are sent to minister to human needs.  
         A  Guardian Angel, Ernie would say, is a celestial spirit assigned by God to watch over each individual during life. This general doctrine is part of the Church’s tradition based on Sacred Scripture and the teaching of the Fathers of the Church. Then Ernie would say: “Well, you may ask what is a devil? He is a fallen angel or evil spirit, especially the chief of the rebellious angels, Lucifer or Satan [Matthew 25]. Adorned at his creation with sanctifying grace, he sinned by pride and along with his followers was denied the Beatific Vision. His abode is hell and he does not enjoy the benefit of Christ’s redemption. Yet the devil remains a rational spirit who is allowed by God to exercise some influence on living and inanimate creatures.” 
        Angels are replete in Catholic theology. They ministered to Christ after His temptation in the desert.  Christ told us there are more than 12 legions of angels in heaven. The angels of little ones continually behold the face of the Father; angels will separate the good from the wicked on the Last Day. The Acts of the Apostles describe how an angel of the Lord opened the gates of the prison for them during the night. Also an angel spoke to the deacon Philip who delivered Peter from his jailers; one struck Herod with a fatal disease; one stood by Paul during a terrible storm at sea. How many kinds of angels are there?  St. Paul describes them as thrones and dominations, principalities and powers, archangels and powers to which the Catholic tradition has added the cherubim and seraphim from the Old Testament and “common” angels.    And that’s all I know about angels.   But I have woefully digressed. Today is Gabriel’s Day.  Appropriately his feast is close to the Annunciation where he played so conspicuous a part---on March 24. 
           Finally you will be interested to note that Gabriel has been designated the patron of workers at the post-offices, telegraph offices and telephone offices by Benedict XV in 1921.  The Post Office especially needs an angelic guardian.

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