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THE U.S. AT WAR

The U.S. is involved in five wars: Ukraine; Yemen; Iraq; Afghanistan and Syria. Peacetime – especially on those clear days when you could see forever – now  but a faded memory. Americans, with our superior experiences, figure to win all of them. Segue: “The Star Spangled Banner” should never be replaced by “America, The Beautiful.” But a lot of people complain that the song isn’t stirring enough and some feel that the ending (“And crowned thy good with brotherhood,” etc.) is a little too -  you know – democratic?”)
DURING WAR TIMES of the past, there were rationing, shortage of tires, posters of Uncle Sam that read “I want you!,” ammunition plants, five-star mothers, blackouts, air raid wardens, draft cards and V-Mail. There were “pin-up girls” like those of Jane Russell, Betty Grable, Rita Hayworth and Ann Sheridan. New movies around World War II: “Gone With The Wind”; “Casablanca”; “Meet Me in St. Louis”;  “Now Voyager” and reruns of the Andy Hardy series with Mickey Rooney, Judy Garland or Ann Rutherford.
Where else did you find people driving around with their tops down and heaters on, wearing sunglasses with their jackets and shivering in line to buy a Velvet Freeze ice cream cone? There was the St. Louis Browns’ Ken Williams, the first Major League player to hit 30 home runs and steal 30 bases in a season. Where else could you get a hot-buttered martini? Only in our town.

 

FERGUSON & HARASSMENT OF PAPARAZZI

This week, after a California appeals court granted permission, several media groups filed an amicus brief in support of a freelance photographer who was charged with stalking Justin Bieber on an L.A. road violating a 2010 law to crack down on paparazzi’s dangerous habits. Freedom of the Press, Society of Professional Journalists and other organizations warn that overzealous police might exploit the law to punish the photographers. They point to arrests of journalists in Ferguson show how the California law could provide a legal tool for the harassment of news gatherers.

FERGUSON ARSONIST PLEADS GUILTY

Before U.S. Dist. Judge John Ross, Antonio Whiteside, 26, of the county pled guilty to arson this morning for starting a fire inside the Ferguson Supermarket on Nov. 24. He faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and/or fines up to $250k.

SLU UNIONIZING

Time flies. 1995: the Dow Index hit a record 4303. . .1965: the Mets’ Casey Stengel won his 3,000th game as manager. . .Fifty years ago, one of our town’s media icons, Bernie Hayes, left KSOL radio in San Fran. and went on the air at KATZ here. Most know him from his long and illustrious tenure at KWMU. In his early St. Louis gig there were no outdoor restaurant patios (pastas on the pavements) or unionizing at universities. Here’s one of the latter that just took place at St. Louis University when more than 50 students, faculty members delivered to SLU prez Pestello’s office with 600 signatures for administration to recognize their desire to unionize. . .Today, Missouri will hold a public hearing on the Normandy Schools Collaborative to discuss improvement efforts and get feedback. . .A second man has been arrested of being part of a group that allegedly sexually assaulted two women on the Mizzou campus. . .The Illinois House has endorsed legislation to buy vehicles assembled in North America. . .the man questioned in the St. John hostage hoax, Dustin Mitchell, and his past record as a con artist is portrayed in Chris Andoe’s book, “Delusions of Grandeur.”  Two summers ago, Mitchell pretended to be an attorney in St. Louis county. . .According to trusted Catholic blogger Rocco Palmo, the just-resigned Bishop Robert Finn is “the third U.S. prelate to resign under a cloud of controversy over his handling of abuse claims,” and each of them spent time in Missouri. The first – Cardinal Bernard Law – headed the Springfield (buckle of the bible belt) diocese while second – Cardinal Justin Rigali - headed our own. Palmo also predicts that “Given the turbulence in Kansas City, it is practically certain that Finn won’t remain in the area, most likely returning across Missouri to his hometown.” (Another local connection: Finn’s temporary replacement is Kansas City Archbishop Joseph Naumann, also originally from St. Louis.

 

RABBI SHOOK & DISCIPLES, NEW e-CIGARETTE, CLARK TERRY

The Last Supper, more than two millenia away, served the venerating of Passover, the escape of Jewish people from slavery in Egypt and the establishment of Christianity. This week, Temple Israel’s retired Rabbi Mark Shook headed for his traditional lunch with 12 priests at The Cardinal Rigali Center with food catered by Pumpernickle’s Deli. They’ll probably discuss Shook’s debut novel, “The Ezra Scroll,” a work of fiction of the priest/scribe Ezra. .  .New e-cigarette from Pax Labs with pocket-size vaporizer and nicotine juice from cartridges to swap in and out – hailed as “The Apple of Vaping”. . .Available now on Netflix: “Keep On Keeping On,” a new documentary that “follows aging jazz legend Clark Terry as he guides young jazz pianist Justin Kauflin through preparations for a big competition.” It features Terry – a St. Louis native – and Kauflin, Gwen Terry, Quincy Jones, Herbie Hancock and Bill Cosby.

A.G. KOSTER GETS SETTLEMENT FROM SUNTRUP AND AN AUTO SALES FIRM

Attorney Gen. Chris Koster has obtained a settlement with Suntrup Ford-Westport and Suntrup Ford-Kirkwood to provide motor vehicle titles for about 50 vehicles sold by Mylenbusch Auto Sales of St. Charles. In March, Koster sued the two Suntrup stores and owner Thomas Suntrup along with Mylenbusch in St. Charles County Circuit Court for failing to deliver titles.

SEN. CLAIRE McCASKILL, MARCO RUBIO, HILLARY CLINTON

ABC News’s “This Week” on Sunday: Sen. Claire McCaskill said that while she had supported Mr. Obama over Mrs. Clinton in 2008, “I am glad I don’t have that kind of tough choice this time.” “This is not a hard choice,” she said, “and I don’t think it will be a hard choice for America.”  She also said Sen. Marco Rubio had played politics as usual by letting criticism from the Republican base drive him away from a comprehensive immigration overhaul effort that he supported. “I don’t think that he necessarily represents some governmental change,” McCaskill said. “It sounds like, to me, old-style politics”. . .Most of the police force and city officials have resigned in the small town of Parma, MO (58 miles from Cape Girardeau) over the election of the first African American woman was elected mayor. . .Look for radio stations to begin switching OFF their FM bands giving listeners access to digital radio. Digital radio has been tagged “more diverse and pluralistic and provides better sound quality and new functionability.”

FR. LAWRENCE BIONDI & BEYOND

imageSt. Xavier College Church tossed a fundraiser Saturday night at which Fr. Rich Buhler said that Biondi usually has three meals a day at Jesuit Hall and still lives in a house on the St. Louis University campus. As for the “no confidence vote” against the former president, Sister Carla Mae Streeter said, “Sad he went out with such pain.” The good sister is a member of the Dominican Order of only 145 nuns and said, “We’re devoted to truth and justice in Congress and among local legislators. We’re the cats at the back fence howling at the moon even though they throw rotten tomatoes. We give away about $1 million a year.”
imageON HAND AT THE FUNDRAISER were: John and Jane Vogl; Jenn and Brad Clinard; Joan and Thom McGinnis; Chris and Erin Tkach; Tom and Sheilah Shelby; Laura and Carl Greiner.
THE SHELDON ARTS FOUNDATION
sponsored “Singers over Manhattan” in the 103 year-old historic building. Entertainers: the John Pizzarelli Quartet and special guest warbler Jane Monheit. VVVIPS included the Neidorfs and the Rusacks. Also on hand were: Christine and Chris Krehmeyer; Keith Williamson and Stefanie Williams; Noriko Yukozuka and Jonathan Shade. The amazing venue once hosted an appearance by the late journalist and hometowner Martha Gellhorn, former wife of Ernest Hemingway. Gellhorn, by the way, was once a reporter for the Post-Dispatch before accolades on her coverage of the Spanish-American war and the D-Day invasion in Europe.
NITECAPS: Downtown at Tony’s, owner of yesteryear’s Chez Leon, Leon Bierbaum, has become assistant to maitre d’ Ken Bollwerk. Ken is marking his 40th year under the direction of boniface Vince Bommarito. Susan and real estater Tim Sansone were entertaining Sheila and Tom Shelby. Last stop: a check-in at Aaron Teitelbaum’s Kingside Diner (nee Lester’s) still packing ‘em in at 8 p.m. Aaron is doing double-duty with Sean Gallagher at his Herbie’s Vintage ’72.
PRESSING ON
Where are they now? Heralded as one of 20 top sopranos in the world, Christine Brewer currently lives in Lebanon, IL with her hub, Ross Brewer. She works with young students in Marissa,IL. . .Former Football Cardinals quarterback Tim Van Galder, 70, still lives here. He will be enshrined in the Iowa State Athletics Hall of Fame in ceremonies in October. He was a two sport star at Iowa State from 1963-’67 playing baseball and football.. .Gone are Alfred Taubman, who died at 91. His sprawling empire owned his namesake Taubman Prestige Outlets in Chesterfield in the great race for consumer dollars. . .
Retired Chicago Cardinal Francis George, who attended seminary in Belleville, passed away this week. With his passing, and with Cardinal Justin Rigali’s 80th birthday, the number of U.S. electors in a hypothetical papal conclave falls to nine, according to Catholic blogger Rocco Palmo.


 

 

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