Author Archives: majorterata

Holy Toledo!

Every day is like St. Paddy’s Day in Toledo. Call it the stoplight syndrome. Only after a pedestrian is crushed to death at a notoriously dangerous intersection do the authorities decide to install a stoplight. Prior to death, hand-wringing in … Continue reading

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I Ain’t Got Time to Be a Human Being

Jesse Ventura possesses an unusual and varied resume. Born James Janos, Ventura was a member of a U.S. Navy underwater demolition team who went on to the World Wrestling Federation portraying a flamboyant, sexually-ambiguous professional wrestler nicknamed “The Body.” Despite … Continue reading

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Senator Walsh’s Secret Speech Revealed

Much has been written and reported lately on the charges of plagiarism by Montana Senator John Walsh. Will the Army War College strip him of his Masters degree? Is his political career, once considered formidable, poised to come crashing down? … Continue reading

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Just Another Political Hack After All

Andrew Cuomo, governor of New York and son of the insufferable Mario Cuomo who also held the high office from 1983 to 1994, just stepped in a pile of do-do that might have enough odor to derail his obvious presidential … Continue reading

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People. Passion. Possibilities. Plutocracy.

Is it unpatriotic not to pay taxes? A number of corporate leaders and their apologists in Congress would seem to hold a strong negative sentiment, taking umbrage at the notion that shimmying gracelessly through a tax loophole they bought and … Continue reading

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A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Outrages

A couple years ago in the tiny village of Borja, Spain, an elderly woman named Cecilia Giménez tried her hand at restoring a flaking, century-old fresco of Jesus Christ. She failed. Obviously underqualified to do a paint-by-numbers donkey, Giménez turned … Continue reading

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Take Back Your Huddled Masses Yearning to Breathe Free

Do you remember where you were when the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 was enacted? Neither do I, but thanks to meticulous records kept by the U.S. Congress, we know that George W. Bush signed the … Continue reading

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Suspect Decisions – What Happens Next?

News reports abound with stories of decisions made by governments, businesses, sports franchises, religions and many others that on the face seem remarkably suspect. Decisions that lead inexorably to pain, suffering, disenfranchisement, disillusionment, ennui, and any number of unproductive reactions. … Continue reading

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Blissfully Ignorant

Iraq is falling apart, the Maldives are disappearing, Fukushima continues to bleed radiation into the ocean, Haiti struggles with a cholera epidemic, Russia menaces Ukraine. Domestically, Detroit is going under, prisons here are fuller than in any totalitarian-run country, guns … Continue reading

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Shirts and Skins?

The Washington Redskins lost trademark protection from the U.S. Government the other day on the basis that the term “redskins” is considered disparaging to Native Americans. Apparently this is not the first time the Patent and Trademark Office nixed a … Continue reading

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Little Jimmy Scott

David Mamet’s “Glengarry Glen Ross” is a tale of unscrupulous real estate salesmen, one of which makes a Faustian bargain that brings about his unceremonious doom. The stage play is tight: rapid-fire dialog, spare set, a mere 90 minutes in … Continue reading

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A Movie About a Nice Jewish Boy

“Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon,” produced and directed by Mike Myers is one of the most fascinating and entertaining documentaries made in the past ten years, and for people over 50 years old will bring back some delightful memories … Continue reading

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Justly Scrutinized: Don Zimmer, NRA, Elise Stefanik, Mary Soames

Don Zimmer died the other day. The various headlines and photo captions noted unanimously that the 83-year old former NY Met and bench coach for the Yankees had established a career of 60 uninterrupted years in baseball. How sad then … Continue reading

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Maserati Toys with its Brand

Late last summer I strolled into the Maserati dealership on North Rush Street in Chicago where a fetching young woman guided me through the merchandise adorning the spotless floor. After a brief stop to ogle beautiful Ulysse Nardin watches, I … Continue reading

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The Adventures of Bezo the Clown

Amazon.com was founded by Jeff Bezos as a book seller in the mid-1990s on the principle that revenue growth was paramount if the on-line store (then a novelty) was to compete against long-established companies like Borders, Waldenbooks and Barnes & … Continue reading

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The Customer is Always Right a Pain in the Asset

General Motors just received a financial penalty of $35 million (the highest allowable) meted out by the US Transportation Department for their “criminal” behavior surrounding the flawed ignition switches installed in Chevy Cobalts whose failures led to at least 13 … Continue reading

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Mainframe Turns 50; Founder Rolls in Grave

This past month IBM celebrated the 50th anniversary of the introduction of the System 360 computer, the first in a long line of what would be come to be known as “mainframes.” In a move that was later called a … Continue reading

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When Charlie Met Meathead

Rob Reiner may best be known either as the son of comic icon Carl Reiner, or as the tormented, droopy-‘stached “Meathead” Michael Stivic on the seminal “All in the Family” TV show of the 1970s. In fact, Reiner’s greatest accomplishments … Continue reading

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Cruel, but Becoming Less Unusual

For the first time in more than 80 years, Oklahoma would execute two criminals on the same night: the dark and dreary evening of April 29. Due to some appalling incompetence, however, the state executioners only managed to get through … Continue reading

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Amnesiac Advertising

If you’re over 40 years old – and especially if your name is “Herb” – you undoubtedly remember a gruesome television ad campaign for Burger King called “Where’s Herb?” The conceit behind the 1985-86 campaign, developed by J. Walter Thompson, … Continue reading

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