Wed, December 17, 2014
Get Real: Embrace Torture
Change America's symbol.
Gone should be the majestic bald eagle, soaring icon of strength, courage and determination.
In its ...
Tue, December 16, 2014
CIA Was Right: Waterboarding Works
To say the killing of Osama bin Laden created a patriotic euphoria would be a gross understatement. Spontaneous celebrations broke out across the nation. The image of thousands chanting ...
Fri, December 05, 2014
The GOP and Immigration
Dear Wizard Of Oz:
Since we are in the season of giving, perhaps you could see fit to bestow upon the Republican Party the three gifts for which you are best known: ...
Mon, December 01, 2014
Ferguson Debacle Soiled All It Touched
Right on cue, Ferguson, Mo., erupted in chaos after the "No Indictment" grand jury verdict.
Two things are abundantly clear:
Thu, November 20, 2014
Chewing the Fat on Obesity
Let's face it. Smoking is cool.
Yet as the last minority with no rights, smokers get kicked in the butt: high taxes make cigarettes expensive, and society hammers ...
Wed, November 12, 2014
Time Again to Shoot for the Stars
On Jan. 28, 1986, seven Challenger astronauts "slipped the surly bonds of earth to touch the face of God." But then – tragedy. For the first time, America had lost astronauts in ...
Mon, November 03, 2014
Why America Struggles With Ebola
We've talked about Ebola's lethality and the government's staggering ineptitude.
Now it's time to admit Ebola likely is here to stay. That's not because it's an ...
Wed, October 22, 2014
Houston, You've Got A Problem
Based on disturbing events in Texas' largest city, it's clear that Ebola is a distant second in the "greatest threat" category.
That honor goes to ...
Wed, October 15, 2014
Time to Have That Conversation on Race
Jerry Seinfeld to priest in confessional: Well, I should tell you that I'm Jewish.
Father: That's no sin.
Jerry: Oh good. Anyway, ...
Wed, October 08, 2014
The Ebola Factor
Mindboggling. Astounding. Incomprehensible.
All perfectly describe the string of mistakes and idiotic actions of government officials and health care professionals ...
Fri, September 26, 2014
Philly Cigarette Tax Smoke and Mirrors
One can strongly argue that the greatest contribution of our city and state officials is comic relief. And that's exactly what we have in Harrisburg, as 114 representatives, 39 senators and one lame ...
Wed, September 24, 2014
Suit Over PSP Fitness Doesn't Add Up
After taking careful aim, he let the bullets fly, killing one Pennsylvania state trooper and severely injuring another in an ambush outside a police barracks. Suspect Eric Frein, a survivalist and ...
Thu, September 18, 2014
Time for NFL to Sack Roger Goodell
It's not every day you can liken the commissioner of the National Football League to a pope. And since there's nothing angelic about the NFL, you know it's a negative comparison.
Wed, September 10, 2014
Is ISIS Worth Getting Re-involved in Iraq?
You can tell it's a slow news cycle when the big media story is about an insurgency in Iraq being waged by two-bit clowns.
And brutal as they may be, that's exactly ...
Thu, September 04, 2014
Gas Extraction Tax: A Bad Idea
It's no secret that Pennsylvania's budget woes have put a strain on the state. Since A.) the pot of taxpayer money is not endless; B.) an ever-increasing number of hands are demanding their share ...
Wed, August 20, 2014
Ferguson: Widening Racial Gulf
For all the pain endured during the Civil Rights movement by people of all colors, the racial chaos that has descended on Ferguson, Mo., makes one wonder how disenchanted those equality pioneers must ...
Wed, July 30, 2014
Political 'Wall' Stopping Immigration Solution
U.S. Border Patrol agent Jerry Conlin looks out over Tijuana, Mexico, on June 13, from the old wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. After dropping during the recession, the number of immigrants ...
Wed, July 16, 2014
Gambling With Our Future
"If you must play, decide upon three things at the start:
the rules of the game, the stakes, and the quitting time."
– Chinese Proverb
Wed, July 09, 2014
America's 'Bear' Enjoying a Smorgasbord
"Sometimes you eat the bear, and sometimes ... sometimes the bear eats you." So were the prophetic words of Sam Elliot's character in the classic film "The Big Lebowski."
Wed, June 25, 2014
Time to Stop Pandering
In the political dictionary, an example of "pandering" is a candidate saying what he think sounds good – often a plank of the other party's platform – despite knowing it's bad ...
Wed, June 18, 2014
Time for U.S. To Stop Policing the World
The great ship moved silently through the water.
Actually, it didn't, as a 60,000-ton, 1,000-foot-long aircraft carrier does nothing quietly. In fact, the approach ...
Thu, May 22, 2014
Uncle Sam: Striking Out on Taxation
Imagine a baseball team with a self-imposed rule requiring its players to brandish a 50-ounce bat, while the other teams use the standard 32-ounce slugger – a huge difference when facing 95 MPH ...
Thu, May 08, 2014
Why Catholics Don't Go to Church
Who could forget the legendary scene in "The Godfather," perhaps one of the greatest in cinematic history, when the christening was interspersed with clips of the mob hits?
Fri, April 25, 2014
Why Penn State Should Fire Its New President
It is a lurid tale.
A prestigious university, and its incredibly storied football program that won several national championships, is caught up in a sexual-abuse ...
Thu, April 24, 2014
It is Irrational to Pretend We Are Completely Safe
Question: How can one critically examine the "Boston Strong" campaign and nonstop security hype related to Beantown's marathon – without being accused of callousness and ...
Thu, April 17, 2014
Time to End Corporate Welfare
"We actually save money by doing this ... natural gas is the equivalent of about $1.50 per gallon. The last time I looked, gas was still over $3 per gallon. The payback period on these trucks is ...
Wed, April 02, 2014
Unionize College Sports? Strike That!
Footballs are leather. Teams play on grass. Pads are made of nonmetallic materials. So why is the United Steelworkers union bankrolling the efforts of the Northwestern University football team to ...
Fri, March 28, 2014
A Look Back at Top Events of March
As the month comes to a close, let's look at some events so bizarre that you just couldn't script them:
» World Trade Center Security Breach Number Two: Freindly ...
Wed, March 26, 2014
Safety Issues at Forefront After Plane Crash
The American operative furtively approached his objective. Despite the challenge of slipping unnoticed into one of the most secure compounds in the world, he moved with confidence. Utilizing nimble ...
Fri, March 14, 2014
Rethink Cuba Policy
In 1961, an American-backed, CIA-trained paramilitary force stormed Cuba in the hopes of deposing Fidel Castro. After an initial victory, the counter-revolutionaries were routed, proving a major ...
Wed, March 12, 2014
U.S. Needs to Learn from Panama Canal
The great ship moved silently through the water, knifing the jet-black Caribbean Sea as it approached Panama. As dawn broke and the fog lifted, it finally appeared, in all its glory: The massive ...
Wed, February 19, 2014
Fear Has Taken Over USA
If running scared was an Olympic sport, America would get the gold. Hands down.
In stark contrast to the pioneering spirit that built this country – taking ...
Fri, February 14, 2014
Tech: Stronger Than the Storm
Thank God for Starbucks. Or, more accurately, their Wi-Fi. Because of that "gift," many who lose power during storms don't miss a beat being themselves, otherwise known as anti-social, ...
Thu, January 23, 2014
No Easy Answers on Immigration
Since the president's State of the Union address is one week away, the annual debate on immigration reform will be in full swing. With the consistency of a broken record, ideologues on both sides ...
Fri, January 17, 2014
Christie's Bridge Over Troubled Water
And so it begins! The 2016 presidential election is officially under way as we witness the first huge issue for the Republican frontrunner, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. Opponents on both the right ...
Thu, January 09, 2014
Biggest Winners of 2013
We have discussed the biggest losers from last year, so now it's time to spotlight those who won ---though not always conventionally.
Political Correctness: A ...
Thu, January 09, 2014
Biggest Losers of 2013
There are so many candidates for Biggest Losers of 2013 that they deserved their own column. Here they are:
Andy Reid: ...
Thu, January 02, 2014
SEPA Winners, Losers in 2013
It's that time of year again when we contemplate those in our region who made life more enjoyable over the past year, and, of course, the biggest boneheads of 2013.
Wed, December 18, 2013
No Limits on NSA Overseas Spying
The Christmas Season is finally here, that festive time of eggnog and good cheer, where "it's better to give than to receive."
OK. Scratch that last one, ...
Wed, December 04, 2013
Supreme Court Needs to Examine Eminent Domain
There's both good news and bad.
The bad: Phoenixville Area School District has a need to expand, but has had trouble finding space it likes.
Tue, November 26, 2013
The Nation's Highest Gas Tax
Thank you, thank you, thank you!
A hearty round of applause to Pennsylvania's Republican-controlled House and Senate! By granting GOP Governor Tom Corbett his most ...
Wed, November 13, 2013
Its Time for the PC Police to Lighten Up
Pop question: What college major would provide an aspiring journalist the best chance of landing a job? Communications? Broadcast journalism? News production?
Thu, October 31, 2013
Time to Get Tough with Pirates
Water is wet. The sky is blue. And the West is gutless.
While all three are indisputable, only the last can change. But it will take sheer will and enormous courage ...
Thu, October 24, 2013
Are Republicans Trying to Lose
When the "compromise deal" reopened the government and raised the debt ceiling, I had the excruciatingly painful experience of hearing Sean Hannity's radio interview with former Republican ...
Wed, October 16, 2013
Raising Debt Ceiling Not Solution to USA Problems
After last month's boardwalk fire in Seaside Heights, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, self-proclaimed fiscal hawk, immediately allocated $15 million in taxpayer money to business owners.
Fri, October 11, 2013
Setting Record Straight on Catholic Consolidations
The firestorm surrounding my recent column that discussed the lack of unity in merged Catholic schools was reminiscent of the famous "Hamburger Report" of the 1970s, a scathing report on ...
Wed, September 18, 2013
Government Licensing Illegal Activity
Since millions of Americans enjoy crystal meth, it only seems appropriate that the government start doling it out freely. After all, doing so would provide for users' continued pleasure while ...
Tue, September 10, 2013
Syria: Get Our Nose Out
If the United States were a body part, it wouldn't be a brain, but a nose. The world's biggest, always being stuck where it doesn't belong.
Right now, it's in ...
Thu, August 15, 2013
Hollywood Less Liberal than Conservatives Claim
This film image released by Columbia Pictures-Sony shows director Neill Blomkamp, left, and Matt Damon on the set of "Elysium." The film, opening nationwide on Aug. 9, is a rogue burst of ...
Wed, August 07, 2013
Terrorism, Energy Woes ~Joblessness
Let's play Connect The Dots. How are the following related?
1.) The U.S. military launches an emergency air evacuation of diplomatic personnel in Yemen, while two ...
Mon, August 05, 2013
Riley Cooper, Weiner and Summer Scandals
Philadelphia Eagle Riley Cooper really stepped in it.
He uttered one of the most vile, racist, and derogatory slurs out there, one that not only hurts a particular ...
Wed, July 31, 2013
Seeing Red over Indian Nicknames
Life is good.
Summer is in full swing, the Trayvon/Zimmerman soap opera is finally fading away, government is probably reading only half our emails now, and the ...
Wed, July 24, 2013
Dear Duchess Kate,
Congratulations on your new baby – and our new hope!
We know you have your hands full, but at the risk ...
Thu, July 18, 2013
Race Relations in U.S. Worse Than Ever
OK, let's get it out of the way. I wholeheartedly agree with the outcome in the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman fiasco. So to those who felt entitled to a "guilty" verdict, I am undoubtedly ...
Wed, July 10, 2013
Corbett, GOP Fail PA
If you strike out two of every three times at bat, you're a Hall of Famer. One out of four gives you a long career. But go 0 for the season and your contract won't be renewed.
Thu, June 27, 2013
Mandatory Sewer Hook-ups Should Be Unconstitutional
First, a disclaimer: "Obamacare" is about to be referenced, even though today's topic is not regarding health care. So for those opposed, don't immediately use this column as toilet ...
Wed, June 19, 2013
Americans Becoming Prisoners to Fear
"Fear stifles our thinking and actions. It creates indecisiveness that results in stagnation. I have known talented people who procrastinate indefinitely rather than risk failure. Lost ...
Wed, June 12, 2013
Security No Excuse to Spy on Us
"I don't care if the government reads my mail or tracks my phone calls – I have nothing to hide ... if it makes us safer, I am for it."
Such naïve ...
Fri, June 07, 2013
Common Sense Takes A Battering
It's been another banner week for battering common sense, but what else is new? However, there was one bright spot, and that leads off our weekly recap:
Wed, June 05, 2013
Youth Sports: Lack of Common Courtesy
Another Mother's Day has passed, and with it the usual activities: Brunch, cookouts, a walk in the park with Mom. And sports games.
No, not a family outing at the ...
Wed, May 22, 2013
Gaddafi Would Have Prevented Benghazi
Nine months ago most people would have guessed "Ben Ghazi" was the name of a professional basketball player. Now, of course, we know it as the Libyan city where four Americans, including ...
Mon, April 15, 2013
Iron Lady Thatcher: Last from a Great Era
There is a fascinating book by Irving Stone entitled, They Also Ran, the story of men defeated for the presidency. Stone, an historian, also analyzes the races to determine if the people chose ...
Sun, March 17, 2013
Will New Pope Face an 'Age Old' Problem?
Who says the Catholic Church can't change? By electing Jorge Bergoglio of Argentina, the conclave of Cardinals just made history. The list of "firsts" is impressive:
Fri, March 08, 2013
Slash TSA Knife Policy
If the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) could compete for an Emmy, it would definitely be a winner. Its "Security Theatre" has become a cutting-edge soap opera, replete with ...
Tue, February 26, 2013
Pope Resigning is Miracle for Church
Thank God for small miracles. Or, in this case, huge ones.
The decision of Pope Benedict XVI to step down --- the first resignation in 600 years and only the fourth ...
Thu, February 07, 2013
Sue the NFL? Get Your Head Examined!
Now that the Super Bowl is over, the really big game begins. And it's going to be a head-knocker .
On one side we have the raiders. No, not Oakland, but the Trial ...
Fri, February 01, 2013
Ravens' Cheerleader No Right to Super Bowl
"Originally I would have loved to go to the Super Bowl, but at this point it looks like it's not going to happen…. I can't say I didn't expect it, but at the same time, they owe that to ...
Tue, January 22, 2013
Fire School Officials for Suspending Kindergartner!
Fire them. Fire them now!
It is time to immediately boot all school administrators who had any involvement in suspending a five year old kindergartener from the ...
Fri, January 04, 2013
Corbett and the NCAA
July of 2012 was notable for several reasons: the hottest month on record, both parties gearing up for the presidential campaign, and the voluntarily acceptance of harsh NCAA sanctions by the Penn ...
Wed, November 21, 2012
Give Thanks for Stupidity of Mankind
Thanksgiving. That hallowed holiday where we gather to give thanks for health and happiness.
Which lasts for five minutes. Because let's be real. After that, we ...
Thu, November 15, 2012
GOP Blames Everyone But Itself
"Define irony: Bunch of idiots dancing on a plane to a song made famous by a band that died in a plane crash." So said Steve Buscemi's character in Con Air as the criminals rocked out to ...
Thu, November 01, 2012
Flying Into the Hurricane
Flying Into The Beast With Air Force "Hurricane Hunters"
11 Hour Mission Covered 3,000 Miles Over Roiling Atlantic
Thu, October 25, 2012
How to Defuse Iran's Nuclear Ambitions
(Second in a two part series)
For sheer horror, nothing could compare to the detonation of a nuclear weapon by terrorists. Cities would be uninhabitable. Markets ...
Tue, October 23, 2012
Why Do Iran and Libya Dominate Our Debates?
Part 1 of 2 dealing with Middle East — once and for all
Pop Quiz 1: Which of the following is true:
A) It took Iran 25 ...
Fri, October 12, 2012
Tip the Scales Against Obesity
Part 2 of 2
Several years ago, one of the best-loved theme parks in the world shut down a classic ride so it could make some "large" adjustments. Why the ...
Wed, October 10, 2012
Obese News Anchor Sinks Over a Weighty Issue
Part 1 of 2 on obesity, bullying and the lack of shame in America
Think just because there's a presidential election there aren't other "big" issues? Believe that, and pigs can ...
Fri, September 28, 2012
Romney: 47% of a Good Candidate
So Mitt Romney is having big problems. What a newsflash, ranking right up there with the Japanese bombing Pearl Harbor.
That Romney is a severely-challenged ...
Thu, September 20, 2012
Muslim Uprisings Showcase America's Oil Dependence
You don't have to be a prophet to know the future will be worse
It's bad enough British comedian Russell Brand is painfully unfunny and a horrendous actor. But he ...
Wed, July 25, 2012
Freind Responds to Corbett on Sandusky Investigation
In a speech before the world's press, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett said, "We must keep in mind that when it comes to the safety of children, there can be no margin for error, no hesitation ...
Tue, July 17, 2012
Freind: Open Letter to Tom Corbett on Penn State
An open letter to Pennsylvania's governor, who refuses to answer disturbing questions about his role investigating the Penn State sex scandal:
Bursting with ...
Thu, June 28, 2012
If Mitt Panders to Latinos: Hasta La Vista!
If he is to win, he must proudly articulate his GOP platform to all, not just some
Without a doubt, this presidential election will be close.
Thu, June 14, 2012
Spain ~Italy: Have We Met Us?
Are the Euro-technocrats (and their America backers) who orchestrated the bailouts of Greece, Portugal, Ireland, Spain (and soon Italy):
Tue, June 05, 2012
Use Your Brain on Motorcycle Helmet Laws
No one ever accused the Philadelphia Inquirer's editorial board of using their "heads" when opining, and last week was no exception.
Like Big Brother ...
Fri, June 01, 2012
Food Police: Saving Foie Gras
If it talks like a duck, and walks like a duck, then it must be….human?
Such is the quacky rationale of many activists as they hoot about animal-cruelty ...
Mon, May 21, 2012
Killings in Mississippi Illustrate Danger of Unmarked Police Cars
The Killings In Mississippi Illustrate The Dangers
In separate incidents last week, two people were gunned down on Mississippi highways by a police impersonator, ...
Tue, May 01, 2012
Convert Refineries to Process Marcellus Shale Natural Gas
Psst: Don't tell anybody, but the worst-kept secret in Pennsylvania is that the natural gas industry --- the only economic salvation our dying state had--- is leaving in droves, replaced by job ...
Fri, April 27, 2012
Corbett's Colossal Cockiness Castrates Credibility
"Stevie Welch sat on a wall (of cards); Stevie Welch had a great fall (winning a mere two of 67 counties). All of King (or is it Joker?) Corbett's horses (jackasses), and all the King's men ...
Tue, April 24, 2012
Corbett's Love Affair With Democrats
Corbett's Love Affair With The Democrats: An Election Letter Back At Ya'
Well, primary election day is almost here, and some of the races have gotten downright ...
Mon, April 16, 2012
Corbett's Senate Candidate an Albatross
The Guv's man, Steve Welch, is an Obama Voter, infuriating many in the GOP
It's the bottom of ninth, you're down a run, two outs and a man on second. Should he try ...
Fri, March 16, 2012
Why Romney Will Lose to Obama
Being in the media, I have no friends, as it should be. If I did, however, 3 of 10 Republicans would surely take offense to this column, since it points out what is increasingly obvious to everyone ...
Tue, March 13, 2012
Diabetes, Donors and Determination
For National Kidney Month, the story of one young woman's fight against a ravaging disease–and time.
The difference between tactics and strategy is ...
Thu, March 01, 2012
Catholic Schools Open, For Now
I always try to check my emotions at the door when I begin a column. That's why I rarely write in the first person. But, hey, I'm also human and a Philly Catholic, so I shed a few tears of joy when ...
Wed, February 22, 2012
Is Archdiocese Lying or Just Incompetent?
Is Archdiocese Lying Or Just Incompetent?
"I don't know Chief…this shark is either very smart, or very dumb…"
Fri, February 17, 2012
Chris Christie and Whitney Houston
With the sparse media coverage of Whitney Houston's death and funeral, it's not surprising that her years of military service have gone largely unnoticed, as were her activities as an undercover cop ...
Mon, February 13, 2012
Drug Testing for Welfare Recipients
Opposing Drug Testing For Welfare Recipients? Are You High?
Randomly testing all public workers is simply common sense
Random drug testing of welfare ...
Wed, February 08, 2012
Rendel to Own Philly Inquirer?
Rendell As Inquirer Owner? Might As Well Be Philly Enquirer
A Jerry Maguire-like treatise for how to resurrect the media's credibility
Thu, February 02, 2012
Hey Christie, Get on the Treadmill
Don't Be Surprised If Romney and Gingrich Bow Out At The End
About the only job better than weatherman --- where you can get it wrong half the time and still remain ...
Tue, January 31, 2012
Gingrich is Right to Shoot for the Moon
In May, 1963, the astronaut sitting atop the Mercury-Atlas rocket "went higher, farther, and faster than any other American…for a brief moment, Gordo Cooper became the greatest pilot ...
Tue, January 24, 2012
GOP: Time for an Open Senate Primary
Endorsing Steve Welch ---who voted for Obama --- would make the Party a national laughingstock
To say the Republican presidential primary has become interesting ...
Mon, January 23, 2012
Why Are Iowa, South Carolina Picking Our Presidents?
Pennsylvania, New Jersey and the nation have zero say ---yet again
Another election year is upon us, and there's good news and bad news. On the upside, Americans will again peacefully ...
Tue, January 17, 2012
Don't Blame Sunoco for Refinery Shutdowns
Second in a series on how retooled refineries can save jobs and revitalize manufacturing
"Thank you for trying to get those who should understand the ...
Thu, January 12, 2012
Catholic School CLosings Result from Church Being Paper Tiger
What does it tell you when private Notre Dame Academy in Villanova has 101 students in its freshman class --- at $20,000 per year --- and Archbishop ...
Wed, January 11, 2012
School Closings: Catholicism No Longer 'Demands'
School Closings Are Because Catholicism No Longer "Demands"
Vatican II Destroyed Catholic Identity And The Essence Of Being Catholic
Fri, December 30, 2011
Biggest Losers of 2011
Freindly Fire's Biggest Losers Of 2011
Although Freindly Fire has never been known for sarcasm and negativity, it feels compelled as a civic duty to point out this ...
Thu, December 29, 2011
Biggest Winners of 2011
It's that time of year when Freindly Fire heaps praise upon those most deserving.
So in the spirit of consistency, the Biggest Winner of 2011, just like every ...
Fri, December 23, 2011
The Political Correctness of 'Merry Christmas'
"This is the way the world ends ...Not with a bang but a whimper."
Does that famous quote aptly describe America's future? Time will tell, but ...
Thu, December 22, 2011
Save Sunoco Refineries
Part 1 of a series on saving refinery jobs and getting America working again
For the tens of thousands whose livelihoods depend on the Sunoco and Conoco-Phillips ...
Mon, December 19, 2011
Catholic Mass, Andy Reid ~School Choice
The best thing about being a columnist is that there's never a shortage of material–especially the kind that leaves you shaking your head. The bad part is that there isn't enough time to cover ...
Wed, December 14, 2011
PA Society in NYC? Absolutely!
When the second weekend in December rolls around, you can set your watch to two things:
1) Politicians, business leaders and media executives from the Keystone ...
Mon, December 05, 2011
Made in America: Not As Simple As It Sounds
After watching the latest segment of ABC World News' "Made in America" series, several thoughts come to mind:
1) Don't view it on a full stomach;
Mon, November 21, 2011
Questions about Corbett Role in Penn State Scandal
Pop Quiz: What's the relationship between the following two statements which have appeared in recent news articles:
1) "Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett's ...
Fri, November 18, 2011
Fumo Judge Disgrace to Federal Bench
Get a hit just one out of three times, and you're in the Hall of Fame. Get nine out of ten problems right on a math test and you're a star student. Nail one of the biggest political dirtbags in ...
Mon, October 24, 2011
Former Philly Super: Yes on School Choice
Hell Freezes Over --- Arlene Ackerman Is For School Choice!
As we all know, weather forecasters are wrong much of the time. But you can't hold them responsible for ...
Fri, October 14, 2011
Romney Must Address Mormonism
He is Republican, pro-defense and hawkish on the War. He is also an unabashed Christian, although his particular sect is viewed with suspicion and prejudice. Oh, and he's running for President. ...
Wed, October 12, 2011
Playing Games with Philly Murder Rate
Murders are up, but Philly PD's website states they are down --- because they're comparing this year's killings to those from 2007!
If the CEO of a Wall Street firm ...
Wed, October 05, 2011
Electoral Vote Change Not Path to GOP Victory
After his victory in 1980, Ronald Reagan chose the best, the brightest - and make no mistake - the most politically powerful to fill his cabinet. In an acknowledgement to the Republican might of ...
Fri, September 30, 2011
Christie: Time to Decide
Here's a message to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie: take care of business or get off the pot. This "will you or will you not run for President" story has to end --- now. Your ...
Fri, September 23, 2011
Why is U.S. Scared of Ahmadinejad?
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's visit to the United Nations has been met with fierce opposition, including a 30-nation walk-out during his address to the international body. That childish ...
Wed, September 21, 2011
Is Obama Obituary Premature?
Despite scandal and a stagnant economy, he was surging in the polls as the election neared. Against the odds, he had gained enough momentum that victory was within his grasp.
Wed, September 14, 2011
Never Forget 9/11: Then Stop Political Correctness
These phrases have been bantered about endlessly in the weeks leading up to the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.
If only they held the true meaning that so ...
Thu, September 08, 2011
Marcellus Shale Protesters = Lobbyists for Mid-East Oil Barons
And there they were, in all their glory, basking in the attention gained from protesting Marcellus Shale drilling.
Sure, those who were angrily denouncing the gas ...
Tue, September 06, 2011
Reality Check for Labor Unions
Oh the guilt. For all us unlucky folks who aren't part of organized labor, how can we not feel at least a little conscience-smitten? After all, we are taking full advantage of that end-of-summer ...
Fri, September 02, 2011
Obama Needs to Win PA
"This is the most important election in American history … if we don't beat Obama and take back the U.S. Senate, the country won't survive … " Such is the rallying cry of many ...
Thu, August 18, 2011
Curfew Won't Solve Problems
The televised images of violence and looting triggered one recurring thought in many people--- that this isn't supposed to happen in our civilized cities.
No, we're not just talking about ...
Wed, August 10, 2011
U.S. Credit Will Be Downgraded Again
On any given day, tens of millions flock to the beach for the sun, sand and surf. Yet because there have been 50 cases over the last decade of people digging deep holes in the sand and then getting ...
Tue, August 02, 2011
Freindly Fire's Best and worst of Philly
Who makes the best Bloody Mary in the city? Where is the best brunch? Freindly Fire has no idea. Thankfully, though, there are much smarter folks who know the best things in and around the nation's ...
Fri, July 29, 2011
News Flash: Summer Weather is Hot
Gary Kirkpatrick runs Ned's Bar in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. If you stopped in for a cold one recently, Gary would have gladly given you the rundown of all things happening in that part of the Sooner ...
Thu, July 21, 2011
American Space Program Dies
How this affects you: the lack of a manned American space program is a deathblow to the discovery of new technologies and life-saving bio-medical research --- not to mention a national security ...
Tue, July 19, 2011
Debt Ceiling? Ballgame's Over
Water is wet. The sky is blue. The United States is insolvent.
These are all true and indisputable statements, and none will change anytime soon.
Thu, July 14, 2011
Texas Grows on PA's Woes
In what amounted to a complete non-surprise, Pennsylvania was just ranked near the economic bottom of the nation. Forty-third, to be exact.
Why the dismal showing for what was once the major ...
Fri, July 01, 2011
Corbett Caves on Union Contracts
Gov. Onorato --- Err…Corbett --- Gives Unions A Sweetheart Deal
How this affects you: the new contracts for unionized state employees will cost $164 million ...
Mon, June 27, 2011
A Bill Coddling Illegal Aliens Is Illegal
State Rep. Tony Payton Wants Illegals To Have College Preference Over Citizens
"College is becoming a pipe dream for too many children, not because they aren't ...
Tue, June 21, 2011
Stop the Fraud: No Voting Without ID
I am not wealthy, but have recently acquired twenty two domiciles throughout Philadelphia. My real estate prowess has afforded me a unique opportunity to make a difference in the lives of our ...
Wed, June 15, 2011
Nutter Soda Tax Needs to Fizzle Out
You have to give credit where it's due.
Thanks to Mayor Nutter, folks have laughed more over the last two weeks than at any time in recent memory. If laughing is ...
Tue, June 14, 2011
Corbett: 0.0 GPA
Who can forget the classic scene in Animal House when the boys from Delta fraternity were summoned by Dean Wormer? As he looked over their grade point averages, he menacingly barked the hard ...
Fri, June 10, 2011
Newsflash to Nutter: Nobody Cares
In 1979, Chicago Mayor Michael Bilandic didn't effectively plow the streets after a snowstorm --- and as a direct result, he lost his primary election several months later. After similar snowstorms ...
Tue, June 07, 2011
How Christie Should Handle 'CopterGate'
In the 1970s, a special state prosecutor was appointed to investigate "ongoing, widespread and systematic corruption" at every level of the police department in Philadelphia. Despite ...
Fri, June 03, 2011
Meehan Challenge Already Taking Shape
Patrick Meehan could be looking at a guy who once worked with him in next year's Congressional race, or he could face off with former Dem Congressman Joe Sestak.
Thu, June 02, 2011
Time to ban Sushi?
Sorry to disappoint, but the 2012 presidential election may prove to be anticlimatic, since it appears the federal government has solved all its problems, from illegal aliens to drug smuggling, from ...
Fri, May 20, 2011
Corbett Spends $20 Million Baseball Stadium
There's good news and bad news for the New York Yankees.
The bad news is that their payroll --- always the biggest in baseball --- hasn't produced. Hey, they ...
Mon, May 16, 2011
Philly GOP and Democrats: A One-Party Arrangement
Philadelphia has the highest rates of murder, violence and poverty in the nation. Its school district, which spends over $17,000 per student annually, is a dismal failure, with a massive dropout ...
Tue, May 10, 2011
The Real Royal Couple
Gerry and Kate McCann Relish Limelight But Still Won't Take Responsibility for Daughter's Disappearance
April was a busy time for the Royal Couple.
Wed, May 04, 2011
Bin Laden's Death and Waterboarding
To say the killing of Osama bin Laden created a patriotic euphoria in the United States would be a gross understatement, as the sense that justice had been served was downright palpable. ...
Thu, April 28, 2011
Profile in Courage: Mel Gibson
My "Freindly Fire" column, never mistaken for being fluffy or politically correct, routinely hammers hypocrites, frauds, and otherwise unsavory characters in politics, business, ...
Wed, April 20, 2011
Feel Good Budget Deals a Joke
It is a sad truth that America has been transformed from a tough-as-nails powerhouse into a nation that prefers to bury its head in the sand, pretending problems will go away if simply ignored. ...
Wed, April 13, 2011
Obama, the GOP and Oil Drilling
That political phrase is fast approaching "Read My Lips, No New Taxes" territory, but its message is infinitely more important. The need to become energy independent is an absolute, since ...
Wed, April 06, 2011
"Nobody bakes a cake as tasty as a Tastykake."
While that jingle can be hummed by most Philadelphians, odds are that another company will soon be baking ...
Mon, April 04, 2011
Corbett Punting on Privatizing Booze?
Last November, Pennsylvanians elected Tom Corbett to solve the state's problems. But instead of leadership, they've received task forces and blue ribbon panels. In just three months, commissions ...
Wed, March 30, 2011
NFL Players Slaves? Jackson, Sharpton Silent
Talk about a political football. At a time when most municipalities are running in the red, another line item must now be factored into budgets: new history textbooks.
Tue, March 22, 2011
Libya Is All About Oil
Recently on Good Morning America, Congresswoman and presidential contender Michelle Bachmann was asked, "What is America's number one vital interest in the Middle East."
Tue, March 15, 2011
America Needs More Nuclear Power
We are not Japan --- Our nuclear is clean, safe and reduces foreign oil
There is a story about a wealthy man who sought the world's safest place in which to build his home, a place free from all ...
Thu, March 10, 2011
PA Budget: Can Corbett Sell It?
Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett's "day of reckoning" budget, containing substantial cuts and rolling back spending to 2008 levels, may well pass the GOP-dominated legislature without ...
Thu, March 03, 2011
DRPA: Same Old Story?
A changing of the guard occurred this week at the scandal-plagued Delaware River Port Authority (DRPA), as Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett appointed himself the new Chairman, and replaced five ...
Fri, February 25, 2011
Killing Pirates on the High Seas
Water is wet. The sky is blue. Europe is cowardly.
While all three are indisputable, only the last can change. But it will take sheer will and an enormous amount ...
Tue, February 22, 2011
GOP: The Party of No?
The nation's largest, most influential gathering of conservatives --- the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) --- was recently held in Washington. Based on the sheer number of attendees ...
Tue, February 15, 2011
Sainthood for Pope John Paul?
Who could forget that chilling seen in Jaws when Mrs. Kintner, whose young son had just been killed by the shark, approached Chief Brody and slapped him in the face.
Thu, February 10, 2011
Christie Takes on Illinois Governor
Illinois Governor Pat Quinn had had enough. A festering sore had turned into a gaping wound, and the leader of the fifth-largest state took off the gloves. It was time to fight.
Tue, January 25, 2011
Challenges Await Corbett
He was ushered into power on a mighty wave, a leader who held great promise --- and made even greater promises. Optimism that gridlock could finally be broken and that Business As Usual wouldn't rule ...
Mon, January 17, 2011
Martin Luther King: A True Republican?
Up until the 1930's, the majority of blacks were Republican, proud to be in the Party of Lincoln. The song that would become the national anthem of the NAACP, Lift Every Voice and Sing, was written ...
Tue, January 11, 2011
Rendell Legacy: High Taxes, Low Ratings and Clenched Teeth
It was a December night, late 90's. My entire family was in downtown Philadelphia taking in the Christmas attractions. One of our traditions was marveling at the magnificently decorated, ...
Thu, January 06, 2011
Another Rendell Bailout: Building Ships with No Buyers
In the movie Dave, Kevin Kline plays a presidential lookalike who finds himself running the country after the real President falls into a coma. Convening a Cabinet meeting, this political novice ...
Tue, January 04, 2011
10 Biggest Losers of 2010
The nature of New Year's is to look at things in a positive way, but truth be told, it's a lot more fun to tee off on those most deserving of our wrath, ridicule and pity.
Fri, December 31, 2010
Biggest Winners of 2010
It's that time of year again when Freindly Fire heaps praise upon those most deserving. You probably aren't going to find these winners on the lists of typical media outlets, most of which bow at the ...
Mon, December 20, 2010
Stop the DRPA 'Takers'
Throughout history, there have always been makers and takers.
Makers create things: jobs, products and wealth. Takers produce nothing. Instead, they leech off the ...
Tue, December 14, 2010
GOP vs. Casey, Jr.
You would think that with Pennsylvania's Republican roots, which have run especially deep over the last several decades, freshman Democratic senator Bob Casey would be vulnerable in 2012.
Wed, December 08, 2010
PA Teacher Unions Losing Power
To modify the legendary quote from Dean Wormer in Animal House: Arrogant, greedy and aloof is no way to go through life.
But that's exactly how the teachers' unions in Pennsylvania have behaved ...
Fri, December 03, 2010
Marcellus Shale: Key to PA's Future
First in an ongoing series examining all aspects of developing the Marcellus Shale.
Stories keep rolling in about the booming economy in a faraway land. Tales of ...
Wed, December 01, 2010
"What do you and a catfish have in common? You're both scum-sucking bottom-feeders."
And that was the nicest, most printable comment Freindly Fire ...
Tue, November 23, 2010
Don't Like Airport Scanners?
When both sides in a negotiation refuse to budge, the impasse is usually detrimental to both parties.
With that in mind, perhaps I can be of assistance in mediating ...
Fri, November 19, 2010
Don't Blame China
Just recently, the nation was abuzz regarding a mysterious smoke plume 35 miles off the coast of California.
Since the U.S. military denied any involvement, several ...
Wed, November 17, 2010
Stupidity isn't a crime. But neither is it a particularly endearing trait.
Just look at some voter stupidity displayed this past election:
Thu, November 11, 2010
Philly Dems Sank Joe Sestaj
Hours after the polls closed, the nation still didn't know who would become Pennsylvania's junior senator, as Republican Pat Toomey and Democratic Congressman Joe Sestak were locked in a ...
Tue, November 02, 2010
When Will We Have Real Airline Security?
A look at solutions for America's impotent policies
Three…two…one…takeoff. The F-16 fighter jet piloted by Lt. Col. Kevin Kelly of the New Jersey ...
Thu, October 28, 2010
Running from Records, Dems Get Personal
Desperate and baseless attacks are backfiring on Dems across the state
Vice President Joe Biden visited Delaware County this week, stumping for Democratic congressional candidate Bryan Lentz. ...
Tue, October 26, 2010
Hey Undecideds: Pick a Side
Let's get something straight this campaign season. There are no "un-decideds." Or at least there shouldn't be.
If there are, they should be banned from ...
Tue, October 19, 2010
Is Philadelphia the Next Greece?
In a recent speech, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter urged college students to stay in the city after graduation, stating, "we have a more knowledge-based workforce here."
Mon, October 18, 2010
How Could Bankrupt Texas Rangers Aquire Cliff Lee?
The cries should be loudest in Philadelphia, New York, and San Francisco.
But they're not.
Fans and baseball owners in ...
Fri, October 15, 2010
Eric Cantor Demonizes Republican Rich Iott
The time has come. We must ban and censor "Gone With The Wind" and every other movie about war.
Despite entertaining countless people, these productions ...
Wed, October 13, 2010
Christie, Corbett Vs. Corzine, Rendell
Success And Failure: A Tale of Two States
Day and night, black and white, right and wrong.
All describe what New Jersey is versus ...
Tue, October 05, 2010
Sour Grapes Establishment, Not TEA Party, Hurting GOP
It never ceases to amaze how the media can get a story so wrong.
Just this week, ABC's Good Morning America discussed how the Republican Party was now unified after "raucous" ...
Thu, September 30, 2010
Neshaminy: One Third of Students Read Proficiently
In their heyday, unions represented 36 percent of the American workforce.
How things have changed.
Now, that number stands at ...
Fri, September 24, 2010
Tierney and the Teamsters: God Help Us
Webster's defines greed as "a selfish and excessive desire for more of something than is needed."
But there should be another entry: Teamsters Local ...
Tue, September 21, 2010
DRPA Backslides on Reform
In yet another unbelievable act of arrogance, the board of the Delaware River Port Authority last week rescinded a reform that had been pushed by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. The board's ...
Thu, September 16, 2010
Castle Had to Go
After Half-Century In Office, Mike Castle Had To Go
Voted for budget-busting stimulus spending.
Voted for the bailouts.
Tue, September 14, 2010
English as the Official Language?
There's an old saying, "When in Rome, do as the Romans do."
After all, if you find yourself living in ...
Thu, September 09, 2010
Gov. Christie and the DRPA
Has New Jersey Governor Chris Christie just driven his successful Administration off a bridge?
Not yet, but he's nearing the edge.
Tue, September 07, 2010
Why Are We Arguing About the Ground Zero Mosque?
A frequent, and well-founded, criticism of American journalism is that too many reporters focus more on a good story than telling the truth.
To be fair, though, that label must also be applied ...
Tue, August 31, 2010
Vacationing in Avalon? Think Twice!
Without question, Avalon is one of the best beach towns on the South Jersey coast. Jutting a mile further out in the Atlantic than other shore points, its cool ocean breezes and pristine beaches make ...
Thu, August 26, 2010
Could School Choice Prevent Cop Killings?
On a recent weekday at Annunciation B.V.M. Church in Havertown, a Mass was celebrated to pray for and honor police officers – both those on the front lines and those who have fallen in the line ...
Tue, August 17, 2010
DRPA 'Reformers': Inmates Running An Asylum
It's Business As Usual at the DRPA. And despite all the "reform" rhetoric flying around, don't expect real changes anytime soon.
The reason is ...
Wed, August 11, 2010
Eminent Doman: the New Amerika?
There's good news and bad news.
First, the bad. As we all know, there just aren't enough places to play skee-ball in Mount Holly, New Jersey.
Wed, August 04, 2010
DRPA Vice Chair Nash Has Conflict
In a February, 2008 media report, Delaware River Port Authority (DRPA) Vice Chairman Jeff Nash, also an elected Camden County Freeholder, ominously warned that "…the deck of the Walt ...
Tue, July 27, 2010
Arizona Immigration Law
Oh the hypocrisy.
Ever since Arizona passed its controversial law allowing police to check a suspect's immigration status, the federal government had been ...
Wed, July 21, 2010
Five Reasons to Dump DRPA Chief Matheussen
Five Reasons To Dump DRPA Chief John Matheussen:
An Open Letter To Governor Chris Christie
Tue, July 13, 2010
Phil's Phans Beware!
The cries are getting louder.
Despite their sweep of the Reds, the Phillies are still in third place, 4 1/2 games behind the Braves, with the trade of Cliff Lee ...
Tue, July 06, 2010
Armageddon in Pennsylvania
Bill Murray must be furious.
Two decades after the release of his classic Groundhog Day – in which a series of events is repeated over and over – ...
Mon, June 21, 2010
Obama ~Offshore Drilling: Opportunity of a Lifetime
They say timing is everything.
And they are right.
If not for perfect timing, and a near impossible confluence of events, Barack Obama would most ...
Tue, June 15, 2010
BP ~The US Government: No Common Sense
Teaching a child how to ride a bike always involves certain lessons.
How to pedal, how to balance yourself, how to steer.
We teach these things because they ...
Tue, June 08, 2010
Bucks County Republicans Imploding
Mirriam-Webster dictionary defines "grow" as "to spring up and develop to maturity" and "to increase in size…to expand."
Fri, May 28, 2010
Sestak/White House Could Face Legal Trouble in Job-Gate
Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Joe Sestak, fresh off his primary win dethroning 30-year incumbent Arlen Specter, may have thought he was entitled to a brief honeymoon.
Tue, May 25, 2010
Corbett and the Twitter Subpoena
Why does it seem that every time a politician takes on corruption, his motives are called into question?
We often hear that investigations of this sort are ...
Fri, May 21, 2010
Obama Will Pay for Abandoning Specter
On far too many occasions, the media gets a story wrong. Whether that stems from laziness, ignorance or incompetence --- or all three --- the people deserve better.
Tue, May 11, 2010
Analysis of PA Governor Race
Pennsylvania's elections this year will be front and center on the national scene, as there are numerous hotly contested congressional races and a U.S. Senate seat up for grabs. But attracting the ...
Fri, May 07, 2010
Catching the Times Square Bomber was Luck
During a television interview, New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly was asked how a bomb-laden car could be driven into Times Square, and how to prevent such a recurrence. He answered, correctly, ...
Thu, April 29, 2010
Inky Gets New Owners
This is probably the easiest column I've ever written.
Unequivocally, Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News ...
Wed, April 21, 2010
The Rendell Legacy: PA's Fiscal Catastrophe
Let's give credit where it's due. Fast Eddie never gives up, no matter how short-sighted his ideas may be.
When we last left our lameduck leader during the 2009 ...
Thu, April 15, 2010
Back from the Dead? Philly Political Tricks Continue
Should Philadelphia GOP Boss Michael Meehan Be Disbarred?
It's no secret that Philadelphia has a long and proud history of political corruption.
Wed, April 07, 2010
Catholic Church Still Wrong on Money Grab
As a product of Catholic school, I remember the nuns drilling into our heads a simple but extremely important concept: WWJD---What Would Jesus Do? We were instructed to use this question as a guide ...
Tue, March 30, 2010
AG Health Care Lawsuit: No Conflict of Interest
The idiocy of some people never ceases to amaze.
For the latest example, just look how the political hacks reacted to the recent week of Pennsylvania Attorney ...
Tue, March 23, 2010
Blame Bush, GOP for Health Care Mess
"I believe that the will of the people is reflected sooner or later in the will of the government."
So says the only man in America who can make George W. ...
Mon, March 15, 2010
Jihad Jane Show the Need for More Profiling
The arrest of "Jihad Jane," a white American woman accused of plotting with known terrorists, is both good and bad.
Good, of course, because those ...
Wed, March 03, 2010
The 'Jack Murtha Philadelphia Shipyard'?
Reports have surfaced that Pennsylvania Democrats are in favor of naming the iconic Philadelphia Navy Shipyard after the recently-deceased Congressman Jack Murtha.
Fri, February 26, 2010
Madeleine McCann: Forsaken by Gerry and Kate -- Again
Being in the media is pretty cool, especially when you run your own news bureau, as I now do (www.FreindlyFireZone.com)
I recently flew in an F-16 fighter jet, ...
Thu, February 18, 2010
Is Curt Schroder Still a Possible PA-6 Candidae?
Hollywood couldn't have scripted the drama any better in the GOP's nomination race for Pennsylvania's 6th Congressional District.
Try to follow along:
Tue, February 16, 2010
Blame Trial Lawyers for Seattle Child Beating
The now-infamous video of a 15-year old Seattle girl being brutally attacked while not one, not two, but THREE security guards --- and numerous other bystanders --- literally stood by and took no ...
Fri, January 29, 2010
Senator Anthony Williams: Remarks Racist?
If you're wondering why race relations in America haven't improved at all, look no farther than the recent comments of state Senator Anthony Williams' concerning the current field of Democratic ...
Wed, December 09, 2009
TV's Dawn Stensland May Run for Congress in the 7th District
Finally, the Delaware County GOP Machine thought it was safe to go back in the waters of congressional politics. Popular incumbent Joe Sestak decided to run for Senate, and the party bosses had ...
Mon, November 02, 2009
Panella's Abortion Flip-Flop Makes Him Unworthy
State Supreme Court candidate Jack Panella obviously doesn't learn from history.
When former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney entered the 2008 Republican ...
Fri, October 09, 2009
Nobel Peace Prize Goes Into the Trashcan of History
All good things come to an end. And so it has for the Nobel Peace Prize.
In an unprecedented display of sucking up, the sycophants behind the Nobel Prize chose ...
Thu, October 08, 2009
Phillies Werth Should Have Been Yanked for Lack of Hustle
Phillies Manager Charlie Manuel had the opportunity of a lifetime during Game 1 of the National League Playoffs. He could have shown the world the real definition of "winning," and, in ...
Mon, September 28, 2009
Analysis: Democratic Candidates for PA Governor
The 2010 election cycle in Pennsylvania will be one of the most important in decades, highlighted by the gubernatorial contest. History favors the Republicans, since the governor's office has ...
Thu, September 24, 2009
America's Walkout of Ahmadinejad Was Disgraceful
When will America learn that the largest part of politics is psychology? Time and again, we fail to see the implications of our actions, with our errors in judgment only leading to victories for our ...
Fri, September 11, 2009
7th Congressional District: A GOP Battle or an Uncontested Primary?
Pennsylvania's 2010 election cycle is shaping up to be one of the most exciting in decades, with gubernatorial and U.S. Senate races taking center stage. And since several candidates in those ...
Fri, September 04, 2009
Rendell's Taxes Would Kill Pennsylvania
Despite a constitutional requirement that a budget be in place by June 30, the impasse remains, giving Pennsylvania the distinction of being the only state without a fiscal plan.
Tue, September 01, 2009
Face to Face With Hurricane Bill: Freindly Fire Rides with USAF 'Hurricane Hunters'
"Jumping out of a perfectly good aircraft is not a natural act. So let's do it right, and enjoy the view."---Clint Eastwood's U.S. Marine character in "Heartbreak Ridge."
Thu, August 27, 2009
Nutter's Tax Increase Is a Joke
It was a rainy, warm March back in 1936, and the snow in the hills around Johnstown began to melt. This caused the unfortunate city to be leveled by yet another flood. To help rebuild Johnstown, ...
Tue, August 25, 2009
Rendell: Always Sticking His Nose Where It Doesn't Belong
Ed Rendell just doesn't get it.
Pennsylvania's Democratic governor has always had a long history of sticking his nose where it doesn't belong, but an article in ...
Thu, August 20, 2009
New Jersey Devils: Knights of the Sky
A media ride with the NJ National Guard
“We live in a world that has walls and those walls need to be guarded... you want me on that wall, you need me on that wall. We use words like honor, code, loyalty. We use them as the backbone ...
Thu, July 30, 2009
Open Letter to Governor Rendell: Why Your Approval Rating is So Dismal
Dear Gov. Rendell:
I noted with interest that your current approval rating stands at just 39% --- the lowest point in your career. Despite denying my repeated ...
Thu, May 21, 2009
Ballard, Rendell Conflicts Intensify at DRPA
Conflicts of interest at the Delaware River Port Authority (DRPA) were taken to a new level at yesterday's board meeting.
Ballard Spahr Law Firm partner John Estey ...
Wed, May 20, 2009
Gerlach Takes Aim at His 2010 Opponents
Republican U.S. Rep. Jim Gerlach, who represents parts of Chester, Montgomery, Berks and Lehigh counties in the 6th Congressional District, is in a unique position heading into the 2010 election ...
Mon, May 18, 2009
Supreme Court, Philly DA Race Headline Election 2009
Tomorrow's primary election features several significant races. As usual in most primaries, they will be largely ignored with a low voter turnout.
Locally, five ...
Fri, May 15, 2009
Saul, Ewing ~PA Turnpike: A Conflict of Interest?
Allegations of conflicts of interest and pay-to-play politics continue to dog Democratic Gov. Ed Rendell and his administration.
Notably, millions in secretive ...
Wed, May 13, 2009
Federal Stimulus Contract Watch
Editor's Note: This is an ongoing series examining how state government contracts are awarded federal stimulus money.
For many years, conflicts of interest and ...
Wed, May 13, 2009
Sestak Edges Closer to Specter Challenge
Since 2007, rumors have circulated that Democratic U.S. Rep. Joseph Sestak – who represents the 7th Congressional District in Delaware, Montgomery and Chester counties – has had his eye ...
Wed, May 13, 2009
Board of Ethics: Williams, McCaffery Campaigns in Violation
The Philadelphia Board of Ethics has determined that the campaigns of Seth Williams and Dan McCaffery, two leading district attorney candidates, were in violation of campaign finance laws, with just ...
Tue, May 05, 2009
Political Realities of the 2010 PA U.S. Senate Race
The fallout from U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter's switch to the Democratic Party continued this week as politicians jockeyed for position and rumors flew about who might be running in the key Senate race ...
Tue, May 05, 2009
Jane Orie Melvin: A Reformer's Bid for the Supreme Court
She was the first woman, and first Republican, to serve as Chief Magistrate Judge on Pittsburgh's Municipal Court.
She was the first female Republican elected to ...
Wed, April 29, 2009
Specter's Switch: An Election Analysis
A political earthquake shook the nation yesterday, quite possibly leading to a seismic shift in how America is governed. Despite several prior statements that he would not leave the Republican ...
Fri, April 24, 2009
Campaign Violations by McCaffery's Firm's PAC??
Law Partners Reimbursed For Political Contributions; Recipients Still Unknown
By CHRIS FREIND, The Bulletin
Friday, April 24, 2009
Fri, April 10, 2009
Questions to DRPA About Its Tram
Below are the inquiries made to the Delaware River Port Authority. The original request was made on November 18.
• It has been reported that $17 million has been ...
Fri, April 10, 2009
DRPA Silent on 'Tram to Nowhere'
Millions spent on now idle project
In December 2000, the Delaware River Port Authority (DRPA) started building a tram project to carry passengers between Philadelphia and Camden. The authority spent a considerable sum – ...
Fri, April 10, 2009
Casino Investors Make Safe Bet With Rendell
Financiers, Associated Entities Donated $3.8 Million to Governor
A Philadelphia investment group, awarded a casino license this week by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, has substantial financial connections to Gov. Ed Rendell, D.
Wed, March 25, 2009
FBI, State Police Investigate Williams Campaign Contribution
The Seth Williams for District Attorney campaign suffered another setback with news that federal and state investigators are looking into a campaign contribution linked to convicted mob attorney ...
Thu, March 19, 2009
DRPA Pulls Plug on PA Construction Company
The Delaware River Port Authority (DRPA), already under attack for conflicts of interest and excessive spending on non-bridge projects, ignited another controversy yesterday by awarding a contract to ...
Tue, March 17, 2009
Specter, Luksik, Toomey May Square Off
Democrats control the United States Senate with 58 votes, and it seems likely that the Republican incumbent from Minnesota, Norm Coleman, will lose his seat in the recount. With 59 votes, the ...
Fri, February 13, 2009
Senator Specter on the Bailout: One-on-One with The Bulletin
Pennsylvania Republican Senator Arlen Specter recently voted in favor of the $800 billion bailout legislation designed to right America's economic ship. Since he is one of only three Republicans to ...
Fri, February 13, 2009
Inquirer Bailout Talks Raise More Questions
The Bulletin and other media outlets have recently disclosed ongoing discussions between Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell, D, and Philadelphia Media Holdings (PMH) Publisher and CEO Brian Tierney. A ...
Thu, February 12, 2009
Rendell to Veto No-Bid Contract Reform?
The Pennsylvania Senate recently introduced 10 bills aimed at reforming state government. Senate Bill 102, sponsored by Majority Whip Jane Orie, R-40th, of Allegheny County, deals with how no-bid ...
Mon, February 02, 2009
NBC Refused to Air Pro-Life Ad During Super Bowl
TAMPA - A storm of controversy has engulfed the NBC television network after it refused to air a pro-life commercial during yesterday's Super Bowl on the grounds that the ad involved "political ...
Thu, January 29, 2009
Reaction to Inquirer Bailout Discussions Draws Fire
On Dec. 29, the publisher of the Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News wrote a column entitled &quot;Papers Matter More Than Ever.&quot;
In his ...
Wed, January 28, 2009
Bailout for the Inquirer?
A Discussion With Rendell's Press Secretary
By Chris Freind, For The Bulletin
It is no secret the Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News have severe financial ...
Wed, January 28, 2009
Port Authority: $11 Million in Non-Bridge Projects
The Delaware River Port Authority (DRPA) resumed its controversial "economic development" program yesterday, doling out millions of dollars to projects having nothing to do with the ...
Tue, January 20, 2009
Does Comcast Phone Service Violate FCC Rules?
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has mandated that Philadelphia-based Comcast Corporation submit a response by Jan. 30 to questions regarding the company's broadband network management ...
Mon, January 19, 2009
Ballard Spahr and Governor Rendell: An Intimate Relationship
Ballad Spahr is Democratic Gov. Ed Rendell's former firm. Numerous partners at the firm maintain intimate relationships with the Governor. Brothers-in-law John Estey and Adrian King, Jr., both ...
Mon, January 19, 2009
Legislators, Citizens React to Ballard's 'No-Contract' Work
Pennsylvania state legislators and community activists expressed outrage this week in response to the Bulletin's Jan. 9 revelation that the politically connected Ballard Spahr law firm performed ...
Fri, January 09, 2009
Ballard's $774,000 'No-Contract' Work for PA
Governor Rendell's former firm went beyond 'non-bid' contracts
Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell (D) has recently come under fire as more information emerges regarding the frequency and high-dollar amounts of no-bid state contracts doled out to his political donors ...
Fri, January 09, 2009
Rendell, Richardson, and Rubin - Pay to Play Politics?
Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich is facing felony charges that he allegedly attempted to sell President-elect Barack Obama's senate seat in a pay-to-play scheme. New Mexico Governor Bill ...
Fri, January 09, 2009
A Recap of Rendell's Ballard Spahr Connections
* Ballard attorneys have contributed nearly a half-million dollars to Gov. Rendell's campaigns. The Ballard firm, a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP), contributed another $481,000.
Mon, December 15, 2008
Knox: No to Blue Cross Merger
Tom Knox is an immensely successful businessman who built his reputation on efficiently directing companies, such as UnitedHealthcare of Pennsylvania, where he served as CEO.
Mon, December 15, 2008
Mellow's Blue Cross Board Seat A Conflict
Pennsylvania Senate Minority Leader Robert Mellow, D-22nd, of Lackawanna County, due to his 38 years in the chamber, has become one of the most powerful politicians in Harrisburg.
Fri, December 05, 2008
Rendell, His Political Friends -- And More State Contracts
Gov. Ed Rendell, D-Pa., has come under increased fire as more information comes to light regarding his relationships with campaign donors.
Awarding contributors ...
Fri, November 21, 2008
Legislator to Rendell: End Insider Contracts
Governor's relationship with Ballard Spahr leads to questions
Last Friday, The Bulletin published a series of articles and a box chart detailing the intimate relationship between Governor Rendell and his former law firm, Ballard Spahr. The investigative report ...
Mon, November 17, 2008
Company with 'Checkered History' Awarded State Contract
The state Department of Revenue awarded a five year contract to the GTECH corporation earlier this year "to supply terminal-based game services to the Pennsylvania Lottery," potentially ...
Mon, November 17, 2008
Legislators Introduce Bills to Reform State Contracts
Harrisburg — In a September memo to the members of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, four state legislators outlined their respective bills aimed at reforming how state contracts are ...
Mon, November 17, 2008
Ballard's Estey Teaches 'Legal Ethics'
In a twist of irony, John Estey, former Chief of Staff to Gov. Rendell and currently a partner at the law firm of Ballard Spahr, teaches a Continuing Legal Education (CLE) course entitled, ...
Mon, November 17, 2008
Political Contributions and Government Contracts: A Fine Line
Political Contributions and Government Contracts: A Fine Line
By: Chris Freind
While Americans voted in record ...
Fri, November 14, 2008
Ballard Spahr and Governor Rendell: Perfect Together
In 1999, after serving eight years as Mayor of Philadelphia, Ed Rendell joined the Ballard Spahr law firm, headquartered in Center City. Two years later, during his campaign for Governor, Rendell ...
Fri, November 07, 2008
The GOP Can't Beat Something with Nothing
Give President-elect Obama credit for one thing. His central campaign theme was correct. Time and again, he pounded home the message that the policies of the last eight years have failed.
Thu, November 06, 2008
Braving the Cold for School Choice
They had camped out, some for 19 hours, prior to the event. Huddling in blankets, drinking coffee and playing cards, they slept on concrete sidewalks in freezing temperatures, but not one person ...
Tue, October 28, 2008
Bud Selig: Baseball's Death Wish
Some things never change. Water is wet, the sun rises each morning, and Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig is staggeringly incompetent.
What we witnessed during the ...
Mon, October 27, 2008
Convict Flees - Courts Free!
Accountability is still non-existent
For convicted felon Warren Watkins, Christmas came early this year.
Despite being convicted for drug offenses in 2006, sentenced to five to ten years in absentia ...
Fri, October 17, 2008
Attorney General Tom Corbett
First in a three-part interview
As Pennsylvania's Attorney General, Tom Corbett finds himself in an interesting political position. On the one hand, he is routinely mentioned as a Republican front runner for the 2010 governor's ...
Fri, October 17, 2008
Rendell's Judges: Business as Usual
One of the media's biggest shortcomings is its lack of follow-up on critical issues. The recent controversy surrounding judges' lenient sentences for hardened criminals, which has led to the ...
Fri, October 17, 2008
Tom Corbett Talks About the GOP and His Election
Last in a three part interview
Tom Corbett Talks About the GOP and His Election
Last of a three-part interview of the PA Attorney General
Pennsylvania Attorney ...
Fri, October 17, 2008
Tom Corbett: Bonusgate, Voter Fraud and Gaming
Second of a three-part interview
Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett, often mentioned as a Republican front-runner for the 2010 governor's race, is running for re-election this fall. With twelve indictments in the "Bonus ...
Mon, October 06, 2008
George Bush Has Kept America Safer
George Bush Has Kept America Safer
Few will argue that the George W. Bush presidency has largely been one of disappointment. It took the President seven years to ...
Tue, September 30, 2008
Nutter Shoots Blanks on Gun Laws
I'm not sure who's more clueless: Mayor Nutter or the family of cop-killer Daniel Giddings
Gidding's family is eulogizing him as "family-oriented, intelligent, ...
Fri, September 26, 2008
Stop the Killing Fields: Enact School Choice
If you bang your head against a wall ten times, there is absolutely no reason to believe the result will be different on the next try. At least, that would be the rational conclusion.
Wed, September 24, 2008
DRPA: Finally on the Record
CEO Says Economic Development funds will still be spent
On Sept. 14, The Delaware River Port Authority (DRPA) enacted a 33 per cent toll hike on the four major ...
Wed, September 24, 2008
The Hows and Whys of the Housing Crisis
Danny Cachuela leads a real estate team at Prudential Fox and Roach in Newtown Square. With a background in finance, government affairs, marketing and economics, and as a former CEO of an ...
Wed, September 24, 2008
U.S. Senate GOP Leader Talks About McCain in PA
A Bulletin Exclusive Q and A
Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky, is the Republican Minority Leader in the United States Senate. A political powerbroker, he is widely ...