The Bronx's Independent Democrat

Rubén Díaz, Sr., (pictured, right), who serves in the New York lege and is also a Pentecostal minister, was the lone Democrat, in the state senate, who voted against the Marriage Equality Act.

I like how he argued his position:" ... marriage is and should remain the union of husband and wife. Same-sex marriage is a government takeover of an institution the government did not create and should not redefine."

Needless to say, Rev. Díaz, who was born in Puerto Rico, took a great deal of grief for his stance ... even from the Latino immigrant community.

Update: MassResistance has more, first-hand reporting on the Rev's heroic effots, as well as information on the 'pro-family' Republicans, in the Empire State, who brought about this travesty.

This is a photo of a disrespectful poster in NYC, post-vote, that MR snapped.


Opportunity: Devon Energy

Ka-ching, ka-ching! This is a fine time to look for a job in oil and natural gas exploration and production.

Devon's website is here.

The Show Me State's Little Knight

Bill Santy, of Chicopee, Massachusetts, is a civic-minded American and a proud grandpa. He sent me this photo of his precious grandchild who is homeschooled and is one of Missouri's reigning chess champs.

Adorable, no?


It's Criminal: The College-Educated Poor

Several short, first-person accounts of young adults who are, unfortunately, starting their married and/or working lives with a mountain of college debt.

I'm guessing that most of these folks, who chose to live beyond their means, probably didn't receive wise counsel from their elders. In fact, they were probably told that an expensive college degree would net them a financially-secure job which would help them pay off their debt.

But most of these sob stories also cause me to shake my head. Like the fella who won't marry his girlfriend because he can't afford a "decent" engagement ring. Or the gal who also has credit card debt and also elected to attend a pricey school.

I will never understand why those who don't have the means to do so, won't humbly bow their necks, go to their local, very affordable community college ... at least for the first two years of their undergraduate experience.

I do appreciate the honest accounts, though. Perhaps they will act as a deterrent to others eager to sign their souls away to receive a (taxpayer-subsidized) Perkins, Stafford, or PLUS loan.

Sidebar: Rep. Josh Cockroft, a homeschool grad who serves in the OK legislature, criticizes tuition hikes at the Sooner State's colleges. “It saddens me that the individual who recommended these significant tuition increases has no idea of the hardships ordinary Oklahomans are facing,” Cockroft said. “Chancellor (Glen) Johnson makes almost $400,000 a year.” Johnson, the Machiavellian-style bureaucrat who championed the hikes, is head of the Oklahoma State System of Higher Education and the son of a congressman. Talk about connected and out-of-touch. You, go, Josh!


They Marched in Birmingham ... for Illegals

Birmingham, Alabama was the site of a sizeable "silent march," this past weekend, to protest the Yellowhammer State's new immigration enforcement law (similar to Arizona's SB 1070) which goes into effect this September.

Children were among the marchers likely due to the fact that this immigration law requires "schools to check the immigration status of their students ... lawmakers said the purpose instead is to gather data on how many are enrolled and how the much the state is spending to educate them." (Plyler v. Doe requires states/taxpayers to fund the K-12 education of all children, illegal or legal.)

Alabama has an estimated 120,000 illegals who allegedly work in construction, agriculture, and chicken processing plants, according to this article. It also has a 9.3% unemployment rate.

After Alabama's H.B. 56 was signed into law by Gov. Robert Bentley, Republican State Senator Scott Beason, one of the legislation's sponsors said, "This will put thousands of Alabamians back in the work force." The law also requires businesses to use e-verify.

The (anti-American worker) Southern Poverty Law Center has pledged to fight a law they describe as 'racist' and 'unconstitutional.'


Sun. Inspiration: The McClanahans

Michele and Greg McClanahan, the founders of Harvest Evangelistic Association of San Antonio, Texas, have been doing Christian missionary work in Mexico, Argentina, Paraguay, the Philippines, and Uganda for many years. They run Vacation Bible Schools, prison ministries, and church planting endeavors - a high-energy, can-do couple.

Their latest newsletter dislosed that Greg, who used to be a General Motors employee, had gone on a missions trip to - Cuba! HEA posted this message on their Facebook page: "Thank you all for your prayers ... your prayers gave us so much 'stunning favor' with government officials!" There's more to this story, for sure, and I will post a link to it in the near future.

Meanwhile, here's information about their medical missions work.

Greg and Michele


Friday Fun II: Sports Hype

Below is the teaser for this year's NBA draft which took place yesterday. The retro newsie-vaudeville angle, accompanied by Adele's signature song, is sharp. Extra credit if you spot Kemba and Jimmer.

Friday Fun: A Furry Tale

Once upon a time an abandoned kitten was wandering around the hamlet of Easthampton in the Land of Massachusetts. The little cat was scared and hungry. Fortunately, an authoress of fairy tales, with a heart for needy furry critters, spotted the gold-colored kitty, snatched him from the hamlet's (liberal) goblins and trolls, and made his wish come true.

Kitty-cat now lives, happily ever after, in his fairy godmother's castle in the woods. The End.

Dr. Watson: Living La Vida Riley


The Paradox

Chuck Colson (in the pix) on genderless parenting: "Efforts to transcend or ignore gender are destined to be fruitless at best, harmful at worst. A culture that tries to do this ends up far more rigid and judgmental than the culture it’s trying to reform. And tragically, its children often end up feeling far worse about themselves than children who are taught to embrace God’s design and purpose for their lives."

Read the entire column here.

Rapper Enters the No Spin Zone

Meet Lupe Fiasco. He dubbed Barack Obama a "terrorist." Lupe's motto is "You should criticize power even if you agree with it."

Bill's ongoing exchanges with rappers are perfect for TeeVee. Mr. O sounds so unctuous when he addresses him as "Mr. Fiasco." (The rapper's real name is Wasalu Muhammad Jaco, and he's fairly well-spoken about the 'war in Afghanistan.') Take a listen.


Sun. Inspiration: Super Bowl Hero Decries a Gender-Neutral Society

In the video below, born-again Christian David Tyree, a bigtime football player, sincerely defends traditional marriage and dads. He also describes the legalization of gay marriage as akin to "anarchy." Jarrett Barrios, of GLAAD, isn't glad about Tyree's comments.

Happy Father's Day, gentlemen.

Update: Jarrett B. had to resign from GLAAD - yesterday. Some coverup involving AT&T.

Tyree - 1
Barrios - 0


Opportunity: Work W/ Free-Market Enviros

PERC, the Property & Environment Research Center, is looking for a new team member ... here's the information.

The Deputy Director for Development and Operations will be part of the senior management team including the Executive Director and the Deputy Director for Finance. The Deputy Director for Development and Operations is responsible for coordinating project and proposal development, securing the necessary support, and managing daily operations at PERC.

Development Duties: Consult with the Executive Director and project directors regarding new projects and programs write proposals to fund current and new projects, programs, and general operations identify new potential donors maintain contact with existing donors to include reports regarding existing projects coordinate development with the Deputy Director for Finance, etc.

Qualifications: Applicants must have demonstrated success with development and operations for an organization like PERC and must be willing to live in Bozeman, MT.

Salary will be commensurate with the applicant's qualifications and experience and with PERC's budget.

PERC has experienced steady and sustainable growth with an annual budget of approximately $2.6 million. The resident staff includes 15 people.

Contact: PERC
2048 Analysis Drive, Ste. A
Bozeman, MT 59718

TCC note: A terriff opportunity to live in one the West's premier locations and work for a positive cause with serious, hard-working folks.


Because Father's Day Cometh

Mike Truman has posted a hard-hitting, heartfelft post about fatherless children at the Political Cowardice blog.

The end of his piece goes like this: "As we all look forward to this Father’s Day, the best gift any woman, of any age, could give to a father or potential father is the acknowledgement of the irreplaceable value men and fathers bring to a relationship, to children and what they afford the greater society. And, what an abject tragedy, what a horrific loss it is for any child to endure a life apart from their father."

Hear, hear.

Deuteronomy 5:16 "Honor your father ..."


Save the Males ... Dignity

Support the cause; purchase the bumper sticker; only two bucks.

A Fun Vid For You Alternative Ed Sorts


JET: How He Beat LeBron & the Vodoo

Well done, Mavs!

Hasta la vista, Santeros.

Auf Wiedersehen, Heat fans.

Don't forget how King James bragged, bragged, bragged, bragged, bragged, bragged, bragged, and bragged. Pride goeth before a fall, LeBronski.

Update: No Ring gets churlish.


Larry K. writes of this photo (which he snapped): "A mural shaped like Hampshire County (MA), lamenting the cost of war, was unveiled last week ... in downtown Amherst. The activist art project is a collaboration of area high school youth and Hampshire College mentors who are members of 'Get Up Get Down' a program run by the Youth Action Coalition. The project cost about $500 in supplies and was sponsored by Amherst area businesses."

Click on the pix to more clearly see the causes the budding artistes think should, however, be generously funded by taxpayers (Hint: One begins with the letter "e.").

More art from the Little Marxists.

BTW: The title to this blog post is actually the title to a hard-hitting documentary about American education. See the trailer below.


Sat. Sighting: TCC's Mascot

Albert makes a cameo appearance.

One Solution to the Mancession: More Mining

Informative article about a topic that's underreported and misunderstood by modern Americans - the mining industry.

Rebekah Rast writes, "America could easily sustain itself with its vast wealth of minerals, energy sources and other materials — all that is required is a little digging.

Instead, leaders of this country would rather import these valuable resources. It’s ironic that at a time when our economy is suffering and nationwide unemployment rates continue to rise, the federal government would choose to import rather than extract those very resources itself.

Dr. Madan Singh, director of the Department of Mines and Mineral Resources (DMMR) in Arizona, says that 56 percent of the total land area in the U.S. is not open to mining. Why?

'Permits take a long time to get and the environmentalists are constantly fighting against them,' says Luke Popovich, spokesperson for the National Mining Association (NMA).

Popovich says it can take five to seven years to open a new mine, depending on the area of the mine and how many agencies are involved and how many lawsuits you have to face from green groups.

Carol Raulston, also a spokesperson for the NMA, says it’s not so much the push-back from environmental groups as it is the time it takes to get the proper permits. She adds that this not good for investment into these operations. 'You have lots of duplicate processes at federal, state and local levels,' Raulston says. 'One agency might want you to change traffic patterns, but then that might affect your water permit, and on top of that you have to hold public hearings. These all take a lot of time.' "

There are some employment opportunities - go here.


Ed Kelley: Washington Times Puts a Liberal in Charge

The conservative Washington Times has hired a liberal as its new editor.

Although I'm sure Ed Kelley (pictured, right), who has been working as the editor of The Oklahoman, would prefer to be thought of as a 'sensible moderate.'

Under his watch, The Oklahoman ...

... attacked conservative candidates who financed their own campaigns

... attacked conservative candidates who are strong 2nd Amendment supporters

... published feel-good illegal immigration stories

... promoted gay pride teen literature

and floundered economically, while keeping the good ol' boy network viable.

Way to go, WT.

Update: Insider's insider.

'Nother Update: Look at the sort of journalists getting honored by the Gaylords (who own the Oklahoman) - Thomas Friedman of the New York Times, for one. Big J noted Friedman's obsession with global warming and living large.

Addition: A video of Kelley taking several cheap shots at Sooner State Tea Party candidates and their religious views. In contrast, Pat McGuigan, who used to work with Kelley at the Oklahoman, defends Adrian VanManen, one of the men Kelley the Shallow is attacking.

Friday Fun: Il Volo*

Even though pop-opera is not usually my cuppa tea, I'll take this trio of young Italians - Piero Barone, Ignazio Boschetto, and Gianluca Ginoble - over the cast of the Jersey Shore any day.

Can these teenagers cantare or what?

*Translated: The Flight

HT: Miz Ann


Innocence Robbed

Painful, Barbaric: National Geographic reports on the child brides of Yemen and Rajasthan.

Gov. Deval Patrick: Still Snubbing Dad

Update, from The Fatherhood Coalition, on Bay State Governor Deval Patrick’s refusal to allow a Father’s Day banner at the Massachusetts State House ...

"With little more than a week to go before Father’s Day the Patrick administration’s lead officials still refuse to give the ok to a Father’s Day banner at the State House. The latest excuse according to those who have called his State House office is that the banner did not meet the ‘standards’ required. In fact, we were told the banner and the Father’s Day message was fine by John Billera, head of the Bureau of State Office Buildings, but that The Fatherhood Coalition was ‘political’ and political signs are banned. Nothing could be further from the truth as both the organization (a non-profit not allowed to engage in political activities), and the Father’s Day message are anything but political. Gov. Patrick’s refusal to honor fathers is thus inexplicable.

Please give the governor's office a call, each day until Father’s Day June 19, and request that he reverse this decision and allow a Father's Day banner. Let the governor know he should support and honor fathers."

Gov. Patrick's number is 1 888 870-7770 or 617 725-4005. Inquiries are best directed to Mr. Mo Cowan, chief of staff.


Two interviews with Jeff Katz, TALK1200 radio, on the Patrick administration’s refusal to allow a Father’s Day banner:

Here's Dr. Peter Hill, media spokesperson, The Fatherhood Coalition

Here's Joe Ureneck, chair, The Fatherhood Coalition

In the photo: D. Patrick.

Update: The guv makes time to attend Gay Pride.


Little Boy Playboy Gets Burned

Tony Tears

Becky Akers serves up a scathing critique of Anthony 'Eat Crow' Weiner.

She writes, "To be clear, the guy is a louse. Which ordinarily wouldn’t concern me or you: a man’s priapic pictures, filthy Tweets, and infidelity are between him, his wife, and the Lord.

But we aren’t talking about a man: we’re talking about one of the sociopaths who rule us. These smug, arrogant bozos micromanage our lives to the tiniest detail – they demand that we light our homes with the bulbs they decree, drink the milk they approve, educate our children where and how they specify, watch broadcasts they regulate – yet they miserably fail at running their own affairs, so to speak. Is there a more dysfunctional set of fools anywhere than Congress? OK, yes: the average bureaucracy. Why do we listen to either, let alone pay their bills and kowtow to their every whim?"

Coz we don't really have a choice in the matter?

P.S. The very juvenile Weiner is (was?) quite the player. Yuck. It's all just a game for him ... until now.

Shocker: Mrs. Weiner is pregnant!

'Nother Shocker: Ashley Herzog blames 'the women.'

Told Ya So: When Libs Agree w/Conservatives

Maybe it's a stretch to include Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie in 'the homeschooling revolution' as we know it, but Ms. Jolie's candid, critical comments about today's schools caught my attention. Here's my newsfeed on the subject.


Discover: Dr. Lyman

He's in this promo (as is Ashley, Q, and Dale).


Starstruck: Et tu, Rick? U2, Rick.

Since Rick Santorum has formally announced that he's running for president, I formally remind readers that Rick hearts Bono and the latter's penchant to use American taxpayer monies (translation: legal plunder) for his bleeding-heart causes, like the Global Fund.

From CQ Weekly, 2005, quoting Rick: “ 'And I usually see Bono when he comes to town, too.' Santorum recently tacked on an amendment to the Senate-passed fiscal 2006 budget resolution that would add $500 million in multilateral funding for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. And he says Bono’s personal lobbying of lawmakers helps get attention to the issues. 'You bring in the president of the Life Insurance Association, and it’s a little different,' the senator says with a laugh. 'He doesn’t have the glasses or the funky clothes.' But Santorum says Bono stands out from the other celebrities who hit the Hill because he comes to meetings prepared - and follows up.' "


Irishdude Bono, incidentally, is under fire, in Ireland, for not paying taxes.

Fear the Housekeepers

A sizeable group of hotel maids watch as DSK enters a criminal court building in NYC. Powerful visual!

The Case of the Offensive White T-Shirts

Unbelieveable! These California students did nothing wrong, but I hope they lawyer up.

Update: John P. passed along this story about a pair of UK schoolboys who got reprimanded for "making gun shapes with their hands."


Sat. Sighting: Candy Store on Wheels

My friend Rick N., of Ohio, (who must remember that I have a sweet tooth and I like big rigs) snapped this photo of a handsome truck hauling world-class chocolates.

Kilwins headquarters, btw, is in Petoskey. The company is growing, growing, growing.


Fri. Fun III: Dirk "The Terminator" Nowitzki

The Big German (also known as the Big D) is playing with an injury. But he delivers in a big way and thrills all the Heat haters. Go here. Please.

Fri. Fun II: But It's Not Really That Funny

Anthony Weiner's buddy just can't restrain himself.

Friday Fun: The 320 Square Foot Home

This family of three puts all those self-righteous greens (who don't walk the talk) to shame. The trio are homeschoolers and have a home business making baby gifts. They live debt-free and seem to make the most of the possessions they own. Well worth ten minutes of your time.


Katniss Everdeen Coming to the Big Screen

File under: Pop goes the culture.

First, a quick summary of The Hunger Games trilogy from the New York Times: "The premise of the series is that a corrupt and decadent Capitol rules over 12 impoverished districts in Panem, in the ruins of North America. Every year the Capitol authorities stage a reaping, in which a girl and a boy from each district are chosen by lottery to be tributes in the Hunger Games. When her younger sister is picked, the heroine, Katniss Everdeen, volunteers to take her place, and with the others is styled, trained and then placed in a spectacularly designed high-tech arena, to fight in the televised games until only one contestant survives.

Though the 'Hunger Games' trilogy has by now won many adult readers — there are 5.6 million copies of the series in print in the United States and Canada — it is the perfect teenage story with its exquisitely refined rage against the cruel and arbitrary power of the adult world."

Second, a quick review from TCC: Even though it's a sci-fi-ish fantasy for young people, this series delivers a powerful, unsettling anti-establishment message that, as The New York Times noted, intrigues adults (like me). Truly, it's like nothing out there - not like the Hobbit, Harry Potter, Narnia, or Twilight. Author Suzanne Collins is insightful, funny, and imaginative, and is the queen of cruel cliffhangers. She's not a decadent libertine (like the author of the 'Girl with the Dragon Tattoo' trilogy), nor is she heavenly-minded like Frank Peretti.

Instead, Ms. Collins, a children's television show writer, says she's been heavily influenced by Greek mythology.

"The Capitol" is the sort of regime that would be hated by liberals, conservatives, and libertarians alike. Katniss Everdeen, the prickly archer and main character, represents the vigilant (and armed) citizen who will protect her loved ones to the death from this Capitol's overseers. The books contain no profanity (Hurrah!), but given that they are published by Scholastic, the bigtime distibutor of books for kiddos, they deserve a 'reader advisory warning' due to the violence and a smattering of sexually suggestive material.

Final word: Lionsgate has begun filming the Hunger Games movie; it's already one of the most anticipated flicks of 2012.

Gotta keep the bread and circuses flowing, right? (Which, ironically, is a running theme in this trilogy.)

Update: Kathy Davis, a discerning reader, also has a review.


No Father’s Day banner at MA State House

I received this email from a pro-daddy organization based in Massachusetts:

"The Patrick administration has taken the extraordinary position that the State House is no place for a banner to honor fathers on this upcoming Father's Day, June 19. An application to hang a banner, as has been done by a variety of organizations and groups recently, was submitted to the Bureau of State Office Buildings, a department under the governor's jurisdiction, by The Fatherhood Coalition.

The application was denied and several requests for the governor's office to intervene have gone unanswered.

Since Governor Patrick has spoken in the past about the importance of fathers and stable families his administration's refusal to allow a banner honoring fathers is both inexplicable and disturbing. Public support for fathers, and by extension families and children, by the governor should be a priority.

Please give the governor's office a call, each day until June 19, and request that he reverse this decision and allow a Father's Day banner. Let the governor know he should support and honor fathers.

Governor Patrick's office number is 1 888 870-7770. Inquiries are best directed to his chief of staff Mr. Mo Cowan."

Like an Airhead

Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the head of the DNC and the mother of three young school-age children, clearly has mucho on her plate. Too much, IMO. In this clip she argues that illegals are "part of the backbone of our economy," ergo we must grant them amnesty. She is also dismayed that Republicans think that illegal immigration "should be a crime."

Psssst, Deb. It is a crime.

Hat Tip to William H.