Thursday, May 29, 2008

Elitist Reverse-racism?

It has been the habit of those of the liberal persuasion to assign racism to only white people, never to those of any other race, such habit configured graphically in the "mainstream media," for instance, including especially the coast papers and ABC/CBS/NBC and their cable outlets. The trash-talking of white people as virtual cannibals vis-à-vis those of color has become a cottage industry, and the sponsors of these garbage-spewers go along because, after all, profit is the theme and self-flagellation a redeeming virtue anyway.

In an interview with Steve Kroft of CBS "60 Minutes," Michelle Obama indicated that she didn't worry about assassination since Barack Obama, being a black man, could be shot just going to the gas station. The ugly context of that statement is that of racism. Most U.S. citizens are white, so her husband, she seems to think, is at the mercy of white racists, who would be called "white supremacists" by Ms. Obama's minister, the Rev. Doctor Jeremiah Wright, who is on the record as claiming that white racists/supremacists invented AIDS and inoculated the black community with the dread disease.
Much has been made about Hillary Clinton's comment that the '68 campaign ran into June, at which time Senator Robert Kennedy was assassinated. She was simply offering a time-frame for previous campaigns but the mainstreamers made the remark into a veiled threat perhaps suggesting that Obama had better not make any trips to the gas station. This turned Clinton's remark into one of racism…ugly, but no uglier than Ms. Obama's actual racial slur, in the first place, which came well before the Clinton remark.

Michele Obama's comment leads into this statement, made in her speech at the University of South Carolina: “Because sometimes it’s easier to hold on to your own stereotypes and misconceptions. It makes you feel justified in your own ignorance… That’s America. So the challenge for us is are we ready for change?” This, in turn, leads into the Barack Obama wisdom offered at some Hollywood bash that people like the folks in Pennsylvania (typical whites noted in his racism speech in Philadelphia, with his grandmother as a paradigm?) are paranoid religionists grasping their Bibles and hunting down immigrants. Since most of the people in S.C., the U.S., and Pennsylvania are white, it's racism again.
Some folks might term these examples as "reverse racism." They would be right. This is enhanced by Michele Obama's previous statement that the U.S. is a mean country, another echo of the Rev. Dr. Wright, who said the U.S. should be damned by God, and connected the nation's meanness with Hiroshima and Nagasaki, operations that actually ended the worst war in history. Barack Obama, notwithstanding any claims to the contrary, knew about the reverend's reverse-racist remarks and reacted by pushing the minister out of his campaign circle.

This sort of racism is not just the garden-variety type. More accurately, it could be termed elitist reverse-racism. In other words, the Obamas (Michele putting everyone on notice through her activities that she's a main player), display elitism in its most pronounced form, not pretty. The mainstream media don't call this stuff elitist racism because Obama speaks from the mountain and must soon part the waters leading to CHANGE as he does the Moses thing, leading the whiteys out of their wilderness of ignorance, as Michele Obama would put in, citing her South Carolina speech.

The elitists, after all, are the ones with the wisdom to identify CHANGE and point the nation toward it. The elite racists (or reverse-racists), as seen in the Obamas, are those sagacious ones who can drag the whites (okay, everyone, to be fair) into the 21st century, perhaps kicking and screaming, to be sure, but acknowledging the elitist superiority. Perhaps this CHANGE has been described, but, if so, the description has escaped this corner. So far, it has been more of a rhetorical gimmick than anything else…sort of like the famous Howard Dean SCREAM of 2004, full of sound and fury but signifying nothing.

It's no accident that Barack Obama has made a supreme effort to engage the youngest of the voters. He has a winsomeness that is attractive, can make a good rehearsed stump-speech (though stumbles badly off-the-cuff), and is relatively young at age 47. His charisma can carry him with the young, who have neither the knowledge nor experience to separate truth from fiction nor personal appeal from genuineness, but do love the notion of CHANGE, just for the heck of it. By contrast, John McCain is labeled a hopeless anachronism, though not appearing as such to the smartest of the youngsters, despite his having both the knowledge and experience to run the country.

So…this column might be termed as one greatly evincing a certain racism, even elite racism. That's for the reader to decide, of course, but level heads should consider the elements of elitist reverse-racism…not pretty, but out there. For instance, is Obama so thoroughly disconnected from Wright that he won't attempt to inculcate reparations, an objective near to the reverend's heart? To do so would point to the quintessential elite reverse-racism…make the whites (most of the taxpayers) ante up to whoever can make a claim, thus admitting a guilt never operative…but appropriate for financial considerations.

And so it goes.

Jim Clark

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Problem: Gas or Ethics?

It's been interesting to watch the "oil barons" in the hearings being admonished by the likes of Senator "Leaky" Leahy, chairman of the Judiciary Committee. It's interesting and funny to wonder why these millionaire executives appeared before this committee on 22 May, which has little to do with oil or commerce of any kind. One has to conclude that the whole affair last week was an effort for a select bunch of prima donna democrats to get their faces before their constituents in a "good cause" before taking their Memorial Day break from the hard work of legislating, never mind that the Judiciary Committee is concerned with matters of law, courts, judges, prosecutors, etc., not oil.

The execs made it plain enough that given the right to extract oil from areas owned by this country they could do wonders to bring down the price of gasoline. The committee members didn't want to hear that. They wanted to penalize the companies (windfall taxes) for making money (private enterprise) and the execs, in particular, for making more than they thought appropriate, never mind that they would make as much as they could themselves, given the opportunity. The deals they make just to stay in office might make the oil execs look angelic.

These Judicial Committee democrats know virtually nothing about the oil business, little more than how to pump gas at the self-serve. They and their colleagues in the Congress seem to think it's perfectly okay for coal-mining companies to ravage the topography of the poor states of Kentucky and West Virginia in fulfilling the demand for power but not okay to drill for oil in lands already owned by the nation or off the coasts, especially in the Gulf of Mexico, notwithstanding the offshore oil rigs off both the Texas and Louisiana coasts, which haven't suffered even slightly because of their presence, not to mention the inland wells all over the Southwest that don't seem to damage the scenery or anything else unduly.

Senator Durbin seemed to wonder if the execs had "any concerns about what you're doing to this country with the prices that you're charging and the profits you're taking." This is the senator who likened American GIs in Iraq to Hitlers' Nazi SS troops, Pol Pot's thugs who murdered a couple million in the infamous "killing fields," and the keepers of the Russian Gulags. This was Durbin's way of sabotaging the military effort in Iraq, so to have the gall to ask anybody else about what they're doing to this country was transparently self-serving and made the senator look foolish, though he probably thought the folks back home would consider him an ethical giant looking out for their gas prices.

For Senator Feinstein, it was a matter of lacking an "ethical compass about the price of gasoline." She saddled the oilmen with "just a litany of complaints, that you're all just hapless victims of a system." The broken system is in the Congress, which is responsible for the tardiness of the U.S. in ratcheting up its oil production years ago and…yes…the oil industry is a victim of this Congressional incompetence. There are rigs offshore vis-à-vis her state of California, though the Federal Ninth Circuit Appeals Court would dearly love to have them outlawed. Feinstein probably would, too, but she obviously dare not mention it.

One is "shocked and appalled" (as the politicians are wont to say when attempting to besmirch a fellow politician) at the obvious allusion by the senators to the matter of ethics – or lack thereof – of the people who are responsible for providing the gas, through drilling and/or refining, that is used in this country, especially since the ethical problem lies with them. The senators, about half of whom are millionaires or multimillionaires, are not bothered by the gas prices since their salaries range from $169,300 to $188,100 (leadership positions) plus extensive perks. House Speaker Pelosi makes $217,400. Despite being eminently well-paid, they lack the ethical concern for the average citizen making far less to make it possible for the oil companies to do what they can to alleviate the problem.

Senator Clinton is not on the Judiciary Committee but she is a good example of the ethically-challenged. Notwithstanding that she told General Petraeus to his face last fall that she considered him a liar, she concocted a lie about the 1996 snipers in Bosnia (a total of none) from whom she and Chelsea had to flee for their lives that was so outrageous as to make her a fit subject of the Senate Ethics committee. Even worse, hubby Bill and daughter Chelsea (16 at the time) have had to go along with it during the campaign, assuming they knew full well that Clinton was repeating to crowds this false tale, apparently never realizing that the perfectly peaceful event was all on tape. Then, there was her lie about the woman whose baby died for the mother's lack of $100 to pay a hospital emergency-room charge.

No…the ethical matter has much less to do with the gas execs than with the ethics of the senators and congresspersons. Senator Obama reckoned that in 20 years of attendance at the Rev. Dr. Jeremiah Wright's church, he never heard the rev say any of the bad things that by now millions of others have heard. Does anybody believe this? Of course not! If he didn't hear Wright's garbage, he had to be sound asleep in the pew, something hard to do within the hearing of the screaming Wright, who might put the screaming Howard Dean (Iowa 2004) to shame for sheer volume, if not coherence.

Obama, at last notice at least, was still a member of Wright's church, which has this in its statement of faith: "We are an African people, and remain 'true to our native land,' the mother continent, the cradle of civilization." In light of this, how true is Obama to the native land called the USA? Do his Kenyan roots and his relatives there, including cousin Odinga, the prime minister, mean more to him than his roots in this country? Who knows? He hasn't renounced that part of the statement of faith.

The gas situation IS a problem of immense proportions that affects every area of life, but there's little hope of assuaging it until the "ethical Congress" gets itself off dead center and starts legislating sensibly (and a bit more ethically?) instead of many of its members sitting around and counting their money and being "shocked and appalled" that anyone would take notice.

And so it goes.

Jim Clark

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Obama or Clinton...Who Cares?

With the primary season nearly over, one looks in wonderment at the Democrat Party vis-à-vis its two candidates, amazed at how these people have risen to the top of the heap. Surely a political party can do better than being satisfied with a couple of folks who started years ago to get the prize, raised a ton of money, and blew it on a public unable or unwilling to demand competency. Senator Clinton is even investing some $10 million of her own fortune in the process, notwithstanding the fact that such august

entities as NBC/MSNBC have declared categorically that Obama is the winner.

Senator Obama has come from nowhere – literally – and has adopted the "messiah approach" for his campaign, the white knight on the white horse turned into the black knight on the black horse to save the nation, mostly white. August entities (okay, like NBC/MSNBC) have aided and abetted in this effort by presenting him as the absolute savior…of the world, no less. His wife has even declared that only now, with her savior-husband in the place of success, is she proud of her country for the first time in her adulthood. She's been referred to as his "bitter-half" but enhances that image only when she speaks, which is often.

Last fall, Clinton reckoned in an appearance before the congressional black caucus that the government should give $5,000 to each baby when she/he escapes the womb to face a cruel world. Since about 4,000,000 babes arrive each year, that works out to some $20 billion in just the first year. Not to be outdone by even herself, in Iowa she allowed that it would be a good idea to give every earner a $1,000 tax-cut per year in behalf of her/his IRA. This amounts to more than the baby-boon (up to $25 billion), but she would pay for it with higher estate taxes (taxing the dead…okay no opposition there). Then…about those driver-licenses she thought would be great for illegals…before she thought that maybe they wouldn't be so great…well…get the picture? She hasn't mentioned babies or IRAs for a long time and obviously doesn't need the driver-license thing to raise its ugly head again.

Poor Obama was breezing along when – VOILA! – it was discovered that his pastor, Jeremiah Wright, was, if not a subversive, at least an accomplished racist and USA-hater deluxe. That wouldn't have mattered, of course, except that Obama never left the congregation over a 20-year period even in light of the reverend's totally off-the-wall assertions such as that the U.S. government (maybe during the Reagan era?) invented HIV/Aids and purposely plagued the black community with it. It didn't help that Obama's loud-mouthed wife characterized the nation as Wright did, to wit, a mean place. Obama developed the theme with his remark about the "typical" folks grabbing their guns and Bibles and forming a posse to hunt down immigrants. Egad!

Last fall, Clinton said, "I say this nation can shatter the highest glass ceiling – because that’s what Americans have been doing for over 200 years." In other words, the gender card is now being played, since that's the key to "glass ceiling" language. It's the ladies' turn, and that serves as presidential qualification. Obama, with apparently little sense of history but good vibes concerning diversity, has stated that he would sit down for a conversation on important matters with Iran's President Ahmadinejad without any preconditions, such as that the Big A retract his statement that Israel is to be erased from the map. These people are scary.

Chamberlain tried dancing with the devil (Hitler) in 1938 through appeasement and helped buy England and the whole world seven years of incomprehensible bloodshed. He offered up Sudetenland Czechoslovakia, with no argument against Hitler's simply taking it. Would Obama offer up Israel, thus starting a conflagration unimaginable to the human mind? Who knows?

Clinton spoke of 35 years of experience while in New Hampshire, changed it to 16 years in South Carolina, and actually has held office for only seven years? But that sort of waffling is nothing compared to her totally incomprehensible fabrication of coming under sniper fire while on a trip to Bosnia in 1996. A lie that outrageously huge and meticulously calculated and repeated until she was caught should evoke a humongous doubt of her ability to be commander-in-chief…or even remain as a senator. The only thing that could drive a deception of that magnitude is blind ambition, something she shares with Obama, who, like his wife (and Clinton's hubby Bill), shifts into tongue-mode with his brain still in neutral.

McCain has ambition, too, plus decades of service in both the military and the Senate, but it's not as blind as that. He knows what it's like not to live in a fantasy world and – yes – rubs a lot of conservatives the wrong way, but he actually lived a long torturous ordeal infinitely worse than anything Clinton could imagine or lie about. He doesn't make much of it, but Clinton turned her falsehood into an event extraordinaire in an effort to prove a mettle she was never called upon to exhibit. Disgusting.

McCain has imposing credentials, though he's had his inconsistencies. His concern, for instance, with manmade global-warming/climate-change is a sop to the loonies who think the Kyoto Treaty is found in the Bible. He's bound to understand this nation's top scientists, who pooh-pooh the UN/Algore-conjured "inconvenient truth," but he, to his detriment, will play along. In any case, by comparison with Obama and Clinton, and notwithstanding the non-likelihood of election, he is a far superior candidate in terms of both wisdom and strength.

And so it goes.

Jim Clark

Friday, May 16, 2008

Theologian Marty's "Pew-Game"

In the Christian Century of 06 May is an article entitled Pewless by Martin Marty, with this as the opening statement, "This spring a certain Christian layperson has been criticized for not exiting his local church when he disagreed with something his pastor preached." Obviously, Marty was referring to Barack Obama, 20-year congregant at the Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, pastored until this year by the Rev. Dr. Jeremiah Wright, whose shrill denunciation of this country, complete with vivid exposures of his rants in the media, especially on all major TV channels, have been much in public view this year.

On his personal Web-site, Marty is described thusly, "Marty is one of the most prominent interpreters of religion and culture today. Author of more than 50 books, he is also a speaker, columnist, pastor, and teacher, having been a professor of religious history for 35 years at the University of Chicago." Also on the Web-site, along with a listing of his earned Ph.D, is a list of 75 honorary doctorates he has received, an average of one per year since his was five years old. Octogenarian Marty suggested an imaginary board-game for congregants (using pews instead of icons) to play with respect to the way they react to a given preacher's sermons. He posited 10 situations and then noted the reactions and consequent moves among the pews, including exiting, to be expected/executed…or not.

Marty's intent was to purge Wright and Obama of the baggage they carry, the former for claims so outrageous as to be exponentially racist and on the fringe of lunacy, and the latter for apparently at least not disagreeing by his constant presence rather than finding another church. Marty has made the claim, as well as Obama, that in his attendance at Wright's sermons he never heard the stuff Marty calls "sound-bites" that have been presented over and over everywhere, including the Internet. Indeed, in an hour-long interview on PBS with Wright on 25 April, Bill Moyers, while himself trying to purge Wright using powder-puff conversation, made the monstrous mistake of reproducing the preacher's remarks "in context," meaning that his screaming performances were lengthened and enhanced to the point of disbelief. Moyers must have been on something…not milk, either.

Marty mentioned or touched on such subjects as preaching about the prosperity gospel; the preacher "not wearing a United States flag over her robe;" avoiding controversy; the scriptural justness of wars fought by the U.S.; good news to the poor; "secular humanists, Islamofascists, rappers and anyone other than standard-brand heterosexuals;" "gospel-rooted living;" few seconds of strident, edgy language; sinners throwing the first stone; and letting a few angry words trump clergy acts of kindness. It was a kind of slap at Wright's detractors that was less tongue-in-cheek than accusatory toward those who have also heard Wright but heard something Marty didn't. The subjects speak for themselves, favorites when valuing the liberal positions of each over those of conservatives.

It's probable that in academia Wright's railings are far more widely accepted than in the general public. This is true, also, in some religious denominations, those that are liberal in both religious and social matters, caught up more in political correctness than anything else. Even at that, it's hard to understand why someone as highly esteemed as Marty in the religious area would persistently attempt to make Wright credible, notwithstanding his connection with Wright as his one time pupil and his recent statement in The Chronicle Review of 11 April 2008 condemning the Wright-approved award to Louis Farrakhan and the charge that the government invented AIDS and then plagued the black community with it. Apparently, even Wright-admirer Marty was compelled to say something.

Wright's church is a part of the United Church of Christ denomination, with Bill Moyers a fellow adherent. In its national synod in 2005 in Atlanta, the United Church of Christ became the first mainline Christian denomination to support same-sex marriage officially when its general synod passed a resolution on affirming "equal marriage rights for couples regardless of gender." Since same-sex marriage is outlawed either constitutionally or by legislative fiat, or both, in nearly all the states, not to mention the Congressional passage of the same thing in 1996, one wonders how Wright, Moyers, and Marty approach this subject legally but, more importantly, as a religious matter.

According to CNSNEWS.COM of 03 March, Obama approves of same-sex unions (not called marriages) as in line with Christ's Sermon on the Mount, though Christ didn't mention it. Hillary Clinton takes the same position, though probably not for the same reason. In both cases, the practice of homosexual behavior is condoned, even encouraged, though the scriptures vehemently condemn this behavior in both Testaments. In 2004, according to the National Council of Churches Yearbook, the UCC was comprised of 5,850 churches; by 2007, that figure had dwindled to5,567, a drop of 5% in just three years, with an 8% loss of total membership. Apparently, a lot of UCC folks walked out (though not Wright's church), individually and by congregations. Just as a common-sense, practical matter, homosexual behavior is aberrant, abhorrent, filthy, and unnatural. To condone it in any was is to flout both law and scripture.

In what pew does this leave Marty, if any? Obama, after being forced to make a speech after the blanket airing of the so-called "sound-bites" and an awkward, stumbling press conference following Wright's weird, racist address to the National Press Club, has finally roundly condemned the rants of Wright. Marty hasn't, at least across the board, so he's in limbo with the lib elitists, especially in academia, not where a theologian of his stature should be.

And so it goes.

Jim Clark

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Politics for Millionaires Only?

The most repugnant circumstance applying to the effort to gain public office in the past few decades, especially since the immediate aftermath of the Democrat Convention of 1968, is the objective by many elective wannabes to "buy" – yes, PURCHASE – the office. Politics has become a millionaire's game, a toy or a distraction or an obsession, something to fill a life no longer demanding work for the support of it or its dependents. Some candidates still must work at fundraising, especially the first-timers, who can then use incumbency, as nearly all politicians do, to stay in office, selling whatever it takes to maintain the prize, but the biggest prizes, by and large, belong to the people with money.

Item: Senator Clinton ran out of money earlier this year and "loaned" herself a cool five million or so. She began running out of money again a short time ago, necessitating another personal "loan" of about the same amount. These are not loans, of course, though they can become loans if she's elected since she will then have the power to get back her investment in one way or another. How simple to tell a foreign government, for instance, that what it wants is readily available if the right palm is crossed…with the proper absolutely discreet method of payment (the Lincoln bedroom loved by the Chinese in the 90s?). If she loses, she's lost her investment, but not to worry, she has millions left and hubby Bill can make the loss back in no time by just making speeches.

By December 2007, Mitt Romney had written more than $17 million to his campaign – a loan, of course – that now represents a very bad investment…but not to worry again because Romney is worth millions. Candidates who don't accept government money can give their campaigns all they want; otherwise, they're limited to $50,000. John Edwards accepted government money, at least suspecting strongly that the gamble was too risky, which shows just how smart he was, although Edwards' $400-haircuts are another indicator that rich folks can vie for office and not sweat the details.

Bruce Lunsford is a rich guy in Kentucky (Vencor honcho, though Vencor went down the tubes but Lunsford didn't) who spent a cool $7 million in the Kentucky Democrat primary gubernatorial race in 2003 only to become discomfited, pull out, and support the republican in the election. In 2007, he sank a similar amount trying to get the same office, lost the primary election, and has just thrown in a million or so in the democrat primary race against another rich guy (financing himself, of course) to grab the seat of Senator Mitch McConnell.

Lunsford is something like $15 million into politics-investment with nothing to show for it, but not to worry since he has multimillions spread around here and there. With his other investments consistently covering him with assets, he has little to do so why not just try to buy a senate seat, especially since this seems to be a good year nationally for democrats? Some bored people buy motorcycles; others buy elective offices. Lunsford's opponent the other day tossed in $500,000 to his campaign in order to get elected, buy his toy and – oh yes – save the nation.

The best way to get to be governor in Kentucky is to buy the lieutenant governor spot, then using the position for whatever's necessary (bought and sold), buy the governor's seat. After spearing the lt.-guv seat in the 90s, horseman Brereton Jones went on to grab the governor's chair, during the four-year term of which he spent oodles of time "getting back" his investment. Indeed, his adjutant general (an appointive job) was rewarded with 18 months in the Big House for putting the arm on his subordinate officers to pony up and see that Jones's investment was made whole. That's a legal no-no, but the general took the fall, not the guv. The governor before him introduced the novel idea of not only recouping the investment but collecting interest on it, as well. He later went wildly bankrupt and carried a number of his "friends" down with him. Rich people don't have to actually have all that money…just have smarts enough to make folks think they have it. It's always interesting to see the crooks undone by fellow crooks.

A lot of folks think TV is the corrupter, and it is, in a way. However, it was the replacement of the national conventions with state primaries regarding the selection of a nominee that is the actual culprit. This cockamamie restructuring of the system after 1968 has resulted in protracted election seasons that demand megabucks to be sustained. Obama had hardly found his Senate desk in 2005 before he began running for the presidency, was already a sure bet in 2006 and an actual announced candidate nearly two years before the 2008 November election. Clinton has been at it just as long currently, though she actually started her presidential run along about 2001, when she arrived in the Senate from her adopted state, New York.

After the fiascos occasioned by the disallowance of the primary votes in two of the largest states, Florida and Michigan, coupled with the inordinate length of campaigns and their intolerable costs, the democrats will surely change some more rules after this year's dogfight. Clinton and Obama have turned the exercise into a circus – a very costly circus – as well as completely boring a public long since jaded by the posturing, lying, and transparent opportunism easily identified as central to the candidates' efforts.

Obama and his wife have made millions so he's anything but poor but has raised a ton of money working toward a possible incumbency. He and John McCain have proven that people like Clinton and Romney, as well as Lunsford in Kentucky, can pour their money into the risky business of politics but are by no means guaranteed success.

And so it goes.

Jim Clark

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Is the Lady a Tramp?

The coarseness of current society, especially as compared with that of even 40 years ago, is shocking and appalling, as the politicians often claim when trying to make someone else look bad. The "tell-all" book is a good example of the lengths to which some people – especially celebrity types, whether talented or smart…or not – will go for gathering in greenbacks or just for the sake of notoriety, that 15-minutes-of-fame thing.

The latest example of coarseness is provided by TV personality Barbara Walters, who is just shy of being an octogenarian and perhaps wonders if people 100 years from now will not be aware of her important existence unless she acquaints them with earth-shaking truths about herself, as accounted in her recently released book, "Audition." After all, she once actually discussed with actress Katherine Hepburn the notion of what kind of a tree a person would aspire to being. That kind of sagacious enterprise should be a part of both history and philosophy.

Of course, a lot of folks write autobiographies so the secret for sell-value is to advertise unusual things to be found in the book. The big deal with the Walters tome is the titillating subject of her being some sort of tramp as she climbed the ladder of success. I haven't read the book, nor will I, but the big splash ad-wise is that she (gasp and three palpitations of the liver) had an affair back in the 70s with Senator Edward Brooke while he was a married man. Okay, she went out with other guys, too, like financial guru Alan Greenspan and Senator John Warner, though perhaps not when the latter was married to Elizabeth Taylor, another gal who "got around," at least multiple-marriage-wise.

What better way to advertise the book than to appear on the "Oprah" TV clambake and bare all – not clothes but titillations. So, she and Oprah discussed the meaning of mistress – hey and hello! – and decided they were not in that class. Okay, I read about that since I don't watch Oprah. Not being mistresses, they had to be something…so try fornicators or adulterers, whatever. Oprah also admitted to hanky panky, a wonderfully glorified exercise in the postmodern society of today…the "anything goes" thing.

Walters also discussed her senatorial hanky panky on the talking-head show, "The View," something else I never watch…but, hey!…I read about it. It used to feature total nincompoop Rosie O'Donnell but now is blessed with the profound insights of Whoopi Goldberg and an assortment of women, Walters included (she owns the show), guaranteed to have answers to all the world's problems. These are gals who have crashed through the glass ceiling to the ethereal level of millionaire-idiocy.

Poor Edward Brooke! Naw…shed no tears for him, though one wonders why Walters waited these 30-odd years to humiliate him in her book. The old guy was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2004 and deserved to be let alone. Well…folks in Washington were probably on to the later Walters indiscretions, so a brand new scandal had to be introduced to enhance the notion of tramp-hood as paramount and, more importantly, to sell the book…Brooke can just eat cake.

Walters is and/or will be making the grand tour and appearing on all the talking-head shows such as Oprah and appearing on the cable and morning TV gossip-mongering ménages of mediocrity to hawk her book, all the while driving Brooke's reputation into further extinction. As for Greenspan and Warner, why should they care? Tramp-conduct is a certain sign of super-sophistication in the 21st century, and those two guys (and whatever others are still slithering under Walters' rocks) may have helped it right along. Only the Shadow knows. Walters is just the face of the degeneracy into which the nation is sliding.

According to Entertainment Tonight, Michele Obama recently said, concerning her ET-alleged crush on actor Will Smith, "I think it's the ears. I'm drawn to the ears. Obviously." How's that for profoundness among the celebrities? And this woman dreams of being the first lady? Well…she simply proved that shallowness is the "in thing" now and that sex is all that matters. Sexy ears? Good grief! That sounds like politico-free-lancer (and former Slick Willie operative) Dick Morris's weird obsession with toes.

Walters will sell her books, though certainly not to me. I have the heart of a hickory tree, the hardest wood used in this country. I don't buy her philosophy that bad is good. Not to put too fine a point on it and with the hope of offending not a few, I offer the words of Paul the Apostle: "God is not mocked, for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap" (Galatians 6:7). As the sexy, senseless sophisticates gain the ascendancy, the nation gains the decadency. As Joe Biden said of John Edwards' utterances, Walters' documented trip through tramp-hood is so much FLUFFERNUTTER!

And so it goes.

Jim Clark