Sunday, October 29, 2006

Red Auerbach (1917-2006)

One of the most successful professional basketball coaches passed away yesterday at the age of 89. Red Auerbach coined the phrase "Show me a good loser and I'll show you a loser" The feisty yet inspiring coach made the Boston Celtics the premier basketball team in the United States, winning consecutive titles from 1959 to 1966.
Auerbach played a major role in the Celtics' 16 titles, of which 7 were won as general manager. Those players who excelled during the Auerbach era include Bill Russell, KC Jones, Larry Bird and Bob Cousy (just to name a few). It was in part because of men like Red Auerbach that basketball has become the major sport it is today.

Trevor Berbick (1954-2006)

Former heavyweight champion Trevor Berbick was found murdered in his native Jamaica. Berbick will be remembered for his unorthodox method of boxing which made it possible for him to defeat such notable boxing greats as Muhammad Ali. Berbick's reign as champion was short lived due to a crushing defeat to then 20 year old boxing sensation Mike Tyson.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

When October Goes

by Johnny Mercer and Barry Manilow

And When October goes
The snow begins to fly
Above the smokey roofs
I watch the planes go by
The children running home
Beneath a twilight sky
Oh, for the fun of them
When I was one of them
And when October goes
The same old dream appears
And you are in my arms
To share the happy years
I turn my head away
To hide the helpless tears
Oh how I hate to see October go
I should be over it now I know
It doesn't matter much
How old I grow
I hate to see October go

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Barbra Streisand handles Madison Square Garden heckler

Superstar singer/actress Barbra Streisand appeared at Madison Square Garden this week, the third stop of her twenty city farewell tour. During the concert a member of the audience who took objection to her lampooning George W. Bush began to heckle her. Ms Streisand hurled a few well deserved expletives at the heckler and told Madison Square Garden officials to refund his money. Ms. Streisand is a true democrat who has raised huge amounts of money for Democratic candidates and causes. It is indeed a pleasure to see a Democrat give back what has been hurled at her. George Bush supporters have such sensitive ears. They can dish it out but apparently they can't take it. Most Democrats like to be morally correct, but most conservatives don't give a damn about morals.....and I am including most Religious conservatives in this group too. Democrats are always expected to be polite. Some polite Democrats took offense at what Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said about George Bush being the devil. Yet they had practically nothing to say about Dick Cheney saying "F____ you" to Senator Patrick Leahy or Rush Limbaugh, the drug addicted pundit calling David Benoir "a devil". The time has come to give them back what they give us. The time for being Mr. or Ms. Nice Guy (or Girl) has gone. We are living in a time where people have lost their jobs for having bumper stickers that endorse candidates other than Bush. People have been forced to leave airplanes and change clothes if they are caught wearing anti-Bush apparrel. Kudos to people like Barbra Streisand, Kanye West, Keith Olbermann and the Dixie Chicks who continue to speak out against this unpopular president.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Franklin Township Democrats Have A Picnic At Johnson Park

(Franklin Township Democrat Leader Roz Sherman and Councilman Elia)
Between 75 and 100 Democrats of Franklin Township, New Jersey met to discuss the issues at the Johnson Park facility in Piscataway. Several area politicians were present including Congressman Frank Pallone, Councilman Ricky Sumpter and Councilman
Daniel Sullivan, among others. The morning to afternoon event was very upbeat with almost everyone being optimistic about Democrat success in November. The Democratic candidates locally and nationally are ahead or tied in most major races. Many could not explain how Joe Lieberman has opened up a ten point lead over Ned Lamont in Connecticut but Menendez is now ahead of Kean Jr. in New Jersey, Rendell leads Swann in Pennsylvania where Casey has a dwindling but still comfortable lead over Santorum. Carter is within striking distance of Ensign in Nevada. In Ohio Strickland has a comfortable lead over Blackwell. The way things look on this cloudy to sun shiny day indicate a Democratic triumph in November. But there are always the intangibles, Greg Palast says that the GOP mechanisms to steal the '06 election are already in place. What new attempts to disenfranchise the voting rights of minorities in general and African-Americans in particular will be seen. Even more important what will the reaction by the Democrats be...will it be vigorous protest like we are seeing in Mexico now with the alleged theft of Lopez Obrador's earned presidency or will we see wimpy acceptance like we saw with Gore and Kerry in 2000 and 2004? Many in attendance agreed that it could take over fifty years to undo the harm George W. Bush has done to the environment, the nation and the world. I was happy to discuss the issue of the "Fairness Doctrine" with Mr. Pallone who also agrees that this is an issue Democrats should wholeheartedly endorse. There was once a time when network television was obligated to present both sides of an issue during a news broadcast. Ronald Reagan destroyed this practice as a result we see the reason why people like Pat Robertson, Bill O'Reilly and Rush Limbaugh have risen to prominenence. They don't have anyone to challenge their lies so the people believe what they say is the truth. Rush Limbaugh refuses to have Randi Rhodes being broadcast on the same network as him. When Ms. Rhodes appears on cable television she usually has at least two conservative commentators present. The playing field is NEVER even. MSNBC has only one middle of the road commentator, Keith Olbermann and we are constantly hearing how his job is in jeopardy. NBC had no problem giving conservative Ann Coulter eight unchallenged minutes to promote her vitriol. I contend that the battle to bring back the Fairness Doctrine should start at the grass roots level because the average person has no idea what it was. Those of us who were around when it existed are more likely to appreciate it and share it with those after the Reagan era. At this time I don't know how many Democratic Senatorial, Gubernatorial and Congressional candidates are affiliated with the DLC. If "DLC" Democrats are elected there will be very little change with regard to foreign relations. The war in Iraq will not only continue the war in Iran will begin and the 45 million uninsured in this country will get no relief. It maybe good that Harold Ford Jr (a known DLC affiliate and the man who uttered the words "I love my president" when referring to George W. Bush) has a lead over Ray Corker, but what guarantee do we have that Ford won't become a Republican after he wins as a Democrat. These were just a few of the discussions I had with fellow Democrats at the picnic. All in all an excellent time was had by all.

The Last Rose Of The Summer

Buck O'Neill (1911-2006)

Buck O'Neill was one of the great players of the Negro Leagues. The Kansas City Monarch was also one of the great ambassadores of the game. O'Neill was the first
African-American major league bench coach who played and integral role in the signing of two of baseballs perennial all-stars, Ernie Banks and Lou Brock. The Hall of Fame chose to deny O'Neill entry, but it does seem likely that he will make it posthumously. It is a shame that O'Neill will not be alive to witness his well-deserved entry.