April 14, 2013

Pope Francis’ picks for his advisory team include only ONE current Vatican official.  He now has a team that represents the diversity of the world.  The move reflects he heard the cry to reform the Vatican bureaucracy…and tucked in amidst the new group’s mission was a hint that they will study a revision of the apostolic constitution Pastor Bonus on the Roman Curia.  Just maybe this pope will pull the Catholic Church into the 21st century.  And just maybe, that might help pull some of our own Congressional leaders to do the same…but I am not holding my breath!  At any rate, representation of all peoples of the world is a promising first step.


Despite the extreme difficulty, a big THANK YOU to the parents of Sandy Hook!  Just MAYBE they touched enough of our legislators to help change the course of the outcome on background checks and existing gun laws. 

As Americans, we should all be ashamed that we have allowed money, profits, power, fear and a gun lobby to trump the VOICE of the people.  When there is any doubt that any bill supported by 80-90% of the American citizens will be passed because of THREAT to livelihoods of any legislators, we need to STEP BACK and RETHINK what that broadcasts to the world.

And when this all is over one way or another, we need to address the deeper issue.  What other than the gun lobby makes some American citizens FEAR our government and what can we do about it?

I’d like to just succumb to the easy answer and suggest that if they fear for their lives and need guns to protect themselves from the government, perhaps they should emigrate elsewhere; but it is more than that.  Too many cowboy and Indian movies?  Victims for too long of this money-motivated ruthless brutal campaign?  When did it become okay to think that the SECOND amendment trumps all other rights guaranteed by the Constitution?  Why is it okay that although I am afraid of them-I simply must get over it and adjust; but not okay that the same can be demanded of them?  So many questions and no one is answering.


The Bushies and Neo-Cons should keep their fingers crossed on this one…Iraqi elections scheduled for April 20 will be a good indication of the “success” of the Iraqi War and so far, it does not look good.

Process delays, assassinations of a dozen candidates and lots of bombings already mark the road to the voting polls…I’d say by May 1 we will be able to put to bed the outlandish theory that WAR brings democracy. 

We cannot hold guns to people’s heads as a learning tool; nor can we expect the spOILs of war to pay the bills. What has transpired in Iraq since 2002 should discredit these theories once and for all.

These guys have been promoting this nonsense since the 80s…with excuse after excuse for failure after failure.  When will we all stop listening to them?  It is time for the neo-cons to fade to black.


The next time you pass Augies and think WHY is it still there…now you will know.  We’ve been waiting for the publication of Neal Karlen’s “Augies Secrets:  The Minneapolis Mob and the King of the Hennepin Strip” and now it’s here.  The first book launch is scheduled for Mill City Museum on April 18.  Those who read it will never call Minneapolis boring again.  Now perhaps we need to determine how we preserve this place on Hennepin we wrinkle our noses at!

And speaking of Augie’s, University Press will have a new entrant in June to keep tongues wagging…Penny Peterson’s new book will be out then.  I read an early draft of this one a few years back; and cannot wait to re-read it in its final form…it will start a few conversations about the Mill District, the move of an “industry” across the river to Main Street in 1896 to support that first GOP Convention at Exposition Hall, our city fathers, and their varied interests.   


What’s with this craziness?!!  It is coming down so fast and swirling around so swiftly that I cannot even see the 35W bridge or the University campus right now.  Enough, already! 


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