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Guy Cicero grew up in Cicero, Illinois, U.S. of A. Here’s an article about the town’s history from the public radio website at

Cicero, past and present.

Cicero was a good place to be a kid in the 50s and 60s. Great schools and pretty safe neighborhoods helped by the high output street lights installed around the time of Cicero’s centennial in 1957. We were the “Best Town in America.” Our low property taxes derived from “subsidies” from the mob…at least that was the rumor. But its dark side, bigotry and racial violence, and fundamental conservatism, made this guy, at around 13, decide he never wanted to live there as an adult. Good old Cicero. May its history be a constant reminder that good and bad can and do live side-by-side. Embrace the good and be grateful for it.

ImageTed Cruz’s true believer rants only remind me of another senator

who took us to the brink of a govt. crisis…  Image

why are these men smiling?

Reading: Jeff Bezos: A Brief Anthology –

jeff_bezosLet’s face it. Whether you think the Kindle and e-books are a gift from God or the Devil, I hope we can all agree that Jeff Bezos is one great business guy.

The same guy who took the broken world of book publishing and made it grow again while giving you and me and everybody a cheap way to embarrass ourselves in print has now bought the dear old Washington Post and wants to make it new again. I hope he can do for the news business what he has done for the book business. Continue Reading…

Viewers Like You is PBS’s own fan site. The longer I’ve watched PBS, the more I think of it as a national treasure. One of many.

The Republicans want to take us back to some other time, long ago and far away. You know, when everybody was, or wished they were, evangelical Christians, with family values, 2.5 kids and a Chevy in the garage. Never mind that hidden away to be dealt with in another time were American society’s cancers: divorce and its impact on the very idea of family; child and various other forms of abuse of the innocent; injustices against a wide range of minorities and the real “silent majority,” women; and poverty.

What I want to see is a candidate who recognizes that America is undergoing radical transformation as it absorbs and assimilates massive numbers of immigrants. The parallels between these years and the time between 1890 and 1920 are awe-inspiring. Just different ethnic groups.

Maybe the Republicans really do get this and are just afraid to say anything for fear of offending…anybody. Maybe they are thinking that preserving long-standing American character values is job #1 as our population swells with new minds who need educating about what we stand for, or stood for.

But I doubt it. By their own statements and positions, Republicans make it clear they are out of touch and out for ratings. They and the mainstream media make excellent bedfellows.

I cried when the country elected JFK over Ike’s man Dick Nixon. It’s true; I was thirteen and a lifelong Republican, or so I thought.

The Democrats got lucky again when we elected their Georgia peanut farmer, (although he turned out more than OK as an ex-President), and later, a glad-handing, wanna-please-everybody, philanderer who just kept on philandering. And they had Gary Hart, and Dukakis.

I voted Republican in every election except 1980, when I got behind fellow Illini John Anderson. I mean, really, a movie star…from California!?

But now, I can’t believe the Republicans are so transparently disingenuous, so obviously obfuscatory, so clearly obstructionist to stand in the way of progress, of moving ahead, of making needed changes happen for the 21st century.

I’m done, through, over it.

This year, I supporting anyone who will throw the Tea Party-ers out of Congress, just so we Americans can keep building momentum and making new laws that will propel us out of the past and into this century.

I’m for:

  • Healthcare reform that will give our kids and their kids longer and healthier lives without dissipating their wealth on basic services or neglecting healthcare altogether until they are too sick be able to be helped. A healthy nation is…a healthy nation!
  • Small business development incentives that encourage entrepreneurs to start new companies, create new jobs, and innovate their way to future prosperity for themselves and everyone else without fear that their government will choke off their success like the way an umbilical cord can end a newborn’s life. Government should be a source and resource of new business life, and not its enemy.
  • Real reform in the financial sector, so that we are not ultimately the victims of acquisitiveness, but its beneficiaries. We may not be able to legislate morality, but we must punish immorality that creates ridiculous disparities between the richest and the rest.

I know that at some level the Democrats are the same as the Republicans. But for these times, I’m for the party of President Obama. Any people who can elect such a man as President, coming against, in one act of national repentance, 400 years of injustice and what we used to think was cultural inevitability, then that people deserves better than the endless, mindless  blundering of the Republicans, and worse, their apparent war on truth.

I just can’t stand it any more. How about you?