President Obama is is creating a cyber czar to oversee an enhanced security system for the nation’s computer networks.
I doubt if he will ask me, although we did meet briefly outside the Marvel Ranch during his primary campaign stop, but I nomimate 24’s scowling computer whiz Chloe O’Brian.
She’ll reduce spammers and hackers to quivering geeks and ensure that you somehow reach tech support in India sometime before the next Ice Age (with apologies to global warming freaks).
More people should read the newspaper, the original handheld device.
Of course, I almost dropped the handheld device that is the print edition of the Reading Eagle this morning.
There are two stories in Thursday’s Eagle that are pure catnip to bloggers. With stories like these, nobody can get bored out of their skull.
Granted, bloggers usually don’t the have the time, the temperament and the taste for acute, in-depth analysis.
We’re in and out of there, firing a lethal left and a rock-ribbed right in crisp staccato, then backpedaling for another flurry in another direction. You know, sting like a bee and float like a butterfly.
So allow me to give these two articles my best Muhammad Ali one-two punch.
Story No. 1: A Reading High School special education teacher is arrested after selling cocaine to an undercover Berks detective in a Muhlenberg Township bar.
Well, that sure reflects well on the school district, doesn’t it? And a special ed teacher at that. We can’t be hasty here because the guy is innocent until proven guilty. Still, I remember when teachers supplemented their income by managing rec swimming pools and playgrounds or by painting houses. No teacher should ever sell coke, unless he’s a soda jerk. Then again, who remembers what the hell a soda jerk was since soda fountains disappeared like covered wagons.
Story No. 2: A pedophile and admitted drug abuser who unsuccessfully appealed a state prison sentence saw that sentence increased sevenfold Wednesday in Berks County Court.
The dude thought 3.5 to 7 years in state prison followed by 42 years of probation was too stiff. So he appealed — twice. The second time wasn’t the charm. Be careful what you wish for. It could turn on you like a boa constrictor. Judge Stephen Lieberman gave the guy a pair of saucer eyes by upping 24.5 to 49 years in state prison. The schmuck won’t need Phillies tickets for awhile. Think the guy now wants to use a cheese grater to reshape his head?
Sometimes most of us suffer from an abduction of intelligence. And crushing truths perish from neglect.
I have to admit that I don’t spend much personal time pondering how to cut greenhouse gas emissions.
I’ve been too busy watching the NBA conference finals and thus had no clue that painting flat roofs white and making roads a paler color would be comparable to taking every car in the world off the road for 11 years.
Cynics, of course, may surmount this assumption with scorn.
But that’s just what U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu said at a climate change symposium in London. And this guy ain’t exactly an underachiever in the realm of energy generation. He’s a Nobel laureate in physics, which sort of trumps my communications degree from Temple.
Of course, with white roofs everywhere, darkness may never come in cities and suburbs.
Life is a sea of turbulent tradeoffs, it seems.
Does it ever end?
There are, of course, a lot of perks that go with being president.
You can to fly around the world in Air Force One and not have to go through airport security. You can even eat on the plane.
You never have to drive yourself. You get to play with nuclear buttons if you wish. In short, being president is almost as cool as being a rock guitarist.
Granted, there are a few things a president must do. One of them is to nominate a Supreme Court justice whenever there is an opening. A president’s legacy can be shaped by his Supreme Court choices.
If he picks enough whackos, they soon may decree that all Americans must wear their underwear on the outside. And declare Swedish to be the official language.
Sitting on the Supreme Court is a few steps above being a district justice. It’s such an important job that it merits all sorts of conversation on both sides of the aisle. Nerves are stripped raw just by debating it.
President Barack Obama named federal appeals judge Sonia Sotomayor as the nation’s first Hispanic Supreme Court justice today, praising her as “an inspiring woman” with both the intellect and compassion to interpret the Constitution wisely. If confirmed by the Senate, Sotomayor, 54, would succeed retiring Justice David Souter and would join Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg as the second woman on the current court.
Unless a few unforeseen skeletons pop up in her closet, Sotomayor should be a slam dunk to be confirmed since you don’t have to be a calculus whiz to do the math and realize Sotomayor likely has the votes on her side.
A self-described “Newyorkrican” who grew up in a Bronx housing project after her parents moved to New York from Puerto Rico, Sotomayor seems a lock to line up on the left of the court with three other liberals — Ginsburg, John Paul Stevens and Stephen Breyer. The only question is how liberal she will turn out to be.
By the way, is anybody shocked that Obama didn’t name a conservative? I wish he had just to hear the shocked silence coming out of Rush Limbaugh’s mouth.
“A coward dies a thousand deaths, a hero only one.”
Today is Memorial Day.
Granted, it is a day for barbecues, picnics, family fun.
But it is so much more.
Today America pauses to honor its war dead, all those valiant men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice so freedom can reign across our land.
Nothing is more honorable than to be a warrior for a noble cause. Men and women whose majestic courage squelched any fears they may have had when they stood at the brink of chaos against hellish odds, confronting the enemy.
God bless them all.
And God bless all the men and women in uniform today, stoic heroes facing the dangers spawned by despots serving as the devil’s tools.
Those challenges never abate, whether they are in Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, God knows where.
The latest perilous moment surfaced this very Memorial Day when North Korea claimed it carried out a powerful underground nuclear test, a major provocation in the escalating international standoff over its rogue nuclear and missile programs.
Of course, it’s comforting to know that whenever some wannabe bully tries to kick sand in Uncle Sam’s face, our troops can lash lasers in retaliation, counter shots with terrific trajectory and pristine precision.
There undoubtedly will be many deeds yet to come by our troops that will be heroic, dramatic and historic.
Technology roils us all like the sea. It sucks all of us into the maelstrom of its tidal wave.
Indeed, even the Pope is catching the online wave.
Pope Benedict XVI now is into social networking with a Vatican portal that includes Facebook and iPhone applications.
Imagine what Moses and Jesus could have done if the Internet had been around in their day. Laptops could have multiplied along with loaves and fishes.
Obama vs. Cheney this morning. Mano a Mano.
The reincarnation of Cain vs. Abel, Ali vs. Liston, Rocky vs. Apollo, Lucifer vs. Michael the Archangel (you decide who’s who).
A heavyweight brawl with words, not fists, over Guantanamo.
Two men whose views have nothing in common except for the rigor and vigor of their convictions.
Their words had a pride and swagger; their sentences punctuated with glistening ripples of sinew.
Obama called Gitmo “a misguided experiment.”
Cheney called the interrogations “legal, essential, justified, successful.”
Let Left vs. Right put a shimmer and gleam into your comments.
Mention “Dancing With The Stars” and “American Idol” in snobbish circles and you’ll get stares so icy you could skate across the corneas.
But not from me. I hang with a crowd that equates pop culture celebrities with royalty.
Of course, ever since the Lord began to maketh these manufactured-for-TV competitions, America can’t get enough of them.
It’s the drama of interactive sport, folks. People experience a vicarious adrenaline rush by seeing who survives the cut in a vote by their fellow Americans (my God, I sound like LBJ here — not that hardly anybody watching “Stars” and “Idol” remotely remembers President Lyndon Baines Johnson).
Anyway, “Dancing With The Stars” ended with a shock Tuesday night as chunky Shawn Johnson knocked off hunky Gilles (“Don’t You Just Love My Hair?”) Marini for the title.
“American Idol” climaxes tonight, thank God. Now I can finally wrest control of our big-screen high-def TV from my better half.
The favorite is Adam Lambert, who could bring a flamboyant flair to singing the directions to how to take your colonoscopy prep liquid.
But can Kris Allen, who has been drifting along like an apparition all season, pull off the upset?
Since destiny is a mistress sometimes lacking fidelity, stay tuned.
Right-wing talk show hosts whose tongues are sharper than the edges in Joan Rivers’ face and whose left hands are ignored by their disdainful owners do make for fascinating listening.
Conservatives treat their rants as gospel and liberals treat their diatribes as comedy.
And it sure jacks a talk show host’s profile into the stratosphere if his last name is Savage.
In the interest of full disclosure, when I was a sports humorist in the pages of the late and lamented Reading Times, I had an alter ego known as Lance Savage. But Lance, who once dated Raquel Welch in her prime, was more liberal than a stoned hippie in the Summer of Love. But I digress.
Michael Savage is somebody you may have heard of. His syndicated “Savage Nation” radio show, which reaches an estimated 8 million to 10 million listeners on nearly 400 stations nationwide, is an exercise in inspired lunacy.
This guy opens a huge can of hurt whenever he opens his mouth. He has howitzers for tonsils. Words roll off his lips like Abrams tanks. To him, it’s a steak-and-potatoes world and all liberals are wimps who dine on zucchini-and-beet sandwiches. And are Commies down deep.
This dude is so angry he goes to bed every night with a bad feeling about the mint on his pillow.
Mr. Rogers he’s not.
Savage is so nutso right that he has been banned from Britain because his values supposedly don’t measure up to UK standards. Then again, I don’t know what’s suddenly so special about the Brits. After all, isn’t the disgusting Amy Winehouse British?
Of course even a whacko conservative will go to his left when the right lane is closed ahead.
Savage, who has savaged Hillary Clinton as a “dangerous human being” and “fraudulent huckster,” has asked for the Secretary of State’s help in getting Britain to rescind the decision to bar his entry into the country.
He reached out to Hillary last week and I apologize for not being more timely. But I sometimes get confused and tardy by not knowing my left from my right.
Savage claims Clinton should have his back because it would rise her above partisan politics.
My God, we don’t want THAT!
Partisan politics, next to the NFL, is the best sport we’ve got. If everybody rose above partisan politics, everybody would be in heaven and the blogosphere would have gone to hell.
Pardon the interruption from the real (or is that surreal?) world, but it’s time today to get unbridled from politics and an economy so terrible that the only employed people soon may be mule farmers.
Let’s talk sports television, something millions of people glue their eyeballs to with zeal, not to mention beer and potato chips.
Two good news on that front today, sports fans.
First off, former Tampa Bay coach Jon Gruden, he of the legendary grimaces, is replacing gasping fish-out-of-water Tony Kornheiser on Monday Night Football.
Gruden is a Pretty Boy. Kornheiser is a Pretty Boy only to his mother. Gruden knows football. Kornheiser doesn’t.
Good move, ESPN. Gruden joins Mike Tirico and Ron Jaworski in what should be a terrific trio.
Second, Major League Baseball and Fox have had an epiphany and have agreed to roll back the start time on World Series games before 8 p.m. ET.
As you know, World Series game for decades have started at 8:28 or even 8:38, meaning most Americans on the East Coast were snoozing through the seventh-inning stretch.
With the World Series first pitch set for 7:57 this fall, even East Coast school kids may still be awake by the fourth inning.
No word yet on just how the baseball and Fox moguls discovered sanity after all these years of absurd late nights.