Here are my observations on items in the news.
CBS FESSES UP – First it was The New York Times suspending Glenn Thrush, followed shortly thereafter by CBS suspending Charlie Rose, both for inappropriate sexual activity. Frankly, I was surprised by the actions of these mainstream media giants, expecting them to stand behind their employees. PBS followed by axing Rose, as CBS moved from his suspension to firing.
I tuned in to the CBS Morning Show today, curious as to how Rose’s departure would be handled by his co-hosts, Norah O’Donnell and Gayle King. Each spoke firmly that, while they were friends with Rose, there was no space or excuse for his behavior.
LIKE FATHER LIKE SONS? – By now you’ve probably heard how President Trump intervened with Chinese President Xi Jinping to get three UCLA basketball players released after they were arrested for shoplifting in China.
During a press conference back in the U.S. the three players issued statements of thank-you to the president and the government for gaining their release. Not surprisingly, they couldn’t give thanks from the heart, and had to read simple sentences from notes.
LaVar Ball, the ungrateful father of LiAngelo Ball, wasn’t appreciative of the president’s effort, saying that he would have thanked him if he had flown them home on Air Force One.
The elder Ball also made light of the shoplifting of sunglasses from a Louis Vuitton store, not realizing his son could have been sentenced to jail for 5 to 10 years. I wonder if he recalls how another student, Otto Warmbier, was found guilty of taking down a political poster in a North Korean airport, and sent home near death after several years in prison, only to die at home.
In addition to LiAngelo, Ball has another son, Lonzo, who plays for the Los Angeles Lakers, and LeMelo, a high-schooler. I fear that the three young men are headed for basketball stardom with the same attitude we see in the NBA and NFL today.
NOTE: If you missed my piece on Dr. Sylvia Thompson’s opinion of black athletes in my November 20, posting, I suggest you take the time to read it.
LOIS LERNER FEARS FOR HER LIFE – You remember Lois Lerner. She headed up the IRS department that reviewed and delayed – over a four-year period – conservative applications for tax-exempt status. When called before Congress, she took the Fifth Amendment.
Now, her lawyer, who also represents her deputy Holly Paz, is trying to persuade a judge to keep their testimony and documents from becoming public. “Public dissemination of their deposition testimony would expose them and their families to harassment and a credible risk of violence and physical harm,” the filing states.
“ … most people wonder what the heck must the two have said that would get everyone so agitated?” asks William McGurn of The Wall Street Journal. “What a crippling precedent it would be government officials from powerful agencies such as the IRS were permitted to keep their abuses secret on the grounds they fear that the people whom they are supposed to serve might be upset if they found out.”
For years, I have been writing about the ordeal that the IRS put conservative groups through. These were ordinary grassroots people, desirous of politically educating their friends and neighbors. If the name of their group had the words “tea party,” “liberty,” or “freedom” within it, they got more scrutiny.
One such group was the Wetumpka Alabama Tea Party, lead by Becky Gerritson. I invite you to listen to her heartfelt testimony before Congress. Click here.