Quick Hits – August 22, 2018

Quick Hits – August 22, 2018

Pope Frank flubs it

With the perfect opportunity to finally grab the child sexual abuse moral failing bull by the horns, Pope Francis did nothing more than offer the kind of Vatican pablum that only assures more child rapes at the hands of pedophile priests.

Pope Frank 2

“With shame and repentance, we acknowledge as an ecclesial community that we were not where we should have been, that we did not act in a timely manner, realizing the magnitude and the gravity of the damage done to so many lives. We showed no care for the little ones; we abandoned them.”

OK! So, the Pope has a keen perception of the obvious.

But when it came time to explain exactly how he’d deal with the damning Pennsylvania Grand Jury report and what the Church will do to make damn sure this kind of thing doesn’t happen for the 236th time, there was nothing but more silence.

So, we all know the rapes will continue and every Catholic who insists upon attending mass, sending their children to Catholic schools, and supporting the Church financially, is, by your own religious standard, complicit.

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but there’s no gray area here Catholics!


But wait! There’s more!

Just when you thought it couldn’t possibly get any worse, the New York Daily News reported that, under Cardinal Timothy Dolan’s leadership, the Catholic Conference of Bishops spent more than $2.1 million primarily to lobby against certain provisions in that state’s Child Victims Act.

That doesn’t include their own internal lobbying efforts, either.

The filings show that, from 2007 to 2015, two lobbying firms essentially attacked the New York statute of limitations on sex abuse crimes and time limit constraints for filing civil suits “related to sex offenses.”

I’ll say it again! This inexplicable child rape tragedy can no longer be relegated to a “few bad apples.” It’s the entire tree. The Catholic Church didn’t simply “abandon” the “little ones,” they fed them to the predator priest wolves to save themselves.

With this horrifying icing in the cake, I can’t imagine how any self-respecting Catholic can possibly walk into a church and still believe they’re a good Christian.


So, they moved ‘em, so what?

With uncharacteristic swiftness, the Joliet Diocese removed the two predator priests connected to the Pennsylvania Grand Jury report from the Saint John Vianney Villas, a home for retired Catholic clergy in Naperville. If you recall, those apartments sit directly adjacent to Lisle’s Kennedy Junior High School.

Of course, my reaction to that quick response is, “So what?” As we discussed on Monday, it’s not as if those two pedophiles were going to run out of that residence and grab random middle school boys. That’s not the way it works. These priests groomed both parents and victims in a careful and calculated way.

The problem is, whenever we insist upon taking these pointless feel-good measures, it distracts us from the real source of the problem. And keeping our children safe from sexual abuse requires the kind of constant vigilance that implicitly understands the threat almost always comes from within.

They may not be able or willing to clean their own house, but the Catholic Church certainly seems to have quite the handle on meaningless acts.


Pritzker’s up by 16 points!

According to an NBC News/Marist poll, and it’s only gonna get worse for Bruce Rauner, who really oughtta be working on his concession speech as we talk.


After running a lackluster primary, the Pritzker team suddenly seems to know how to campaign. To wit:

  • They’re hiding his weight more effectively
  • His wardrobe and grooming are much more professional
  • He’s a better public speaker
  • Their current commercials are outstanding
  • They’re hammering the candidate’s name home on social media
  • And J. B. is talking just enough about the issues to keep voters listening

Taking a page from Treasurer Michael Frerich’s cat-in-a-tree playbook, Pritzker’s “I don’t hate puppies” commercial is incredibly well done and beyond effective. And when that compliment comes from this political cynic, that’s really saying something.

We’ll be discussing the Pritzker campaign a lot more as we slouch towards November 6.


Do I really look that old and decrepit?

In an effort to better protect my guitar collection, I decided it was time to purchase a basement dehumidifier. And as it turns out, with UPS and FedEx arriving one after the other, I happened to be on the front porch for that dehumidifier delivery.

But when I went to grab the large box from the twentysomething delivery guy, he winced and wouldn’t let go. After an exasperated look failed to get him to relinquish his grip, I finally exclaimed, “Dude! I’m an athlete!,” and basically yanked it out of his hands.

Then he just stood there watching me as if the Earth’s gravity had suddenly increased to black hole proportions and I was about to be crushed under the package’s suddenly vast weight. He was completely shocked when I managed to maneuver it into the house, too.

I know I’m turning 60 in ten scant days, but until this encounter, I firmly believed I didn’t look or feel my age. But now I’m beginning to have my doubts. Goddam young FedEx whippersnappers!



I generally eschew fast food, but on rare occasion, I will partake of a McDonald’s or Burger King breakfast. This morning was one of those occasions.

But as we were discussing the composition of my coffee, the Burger King employee twice referred to me as “dude.” Never one to stand on formality, I wasn’t quite sure how to handle that kind of familiarity.

But then I remembered I hate being called sir, and whenever someone calls me “Mr. Ward” I turn around to look for my father.

So, “dude” it is! All I can say is, it’s far better than having a scurrilous FedEx deliveryman openly question your physical fortitude.

2 thoughts on “Quick Hits – August 22, 2018

  1. Rauner is clinging to his blame-everything-on-Madigan strategy like a drowning man to a floating log. It’s literally the only thing he knows how to do. He’s probably naive enough to believe that he (barely) beat Ives in the primary because, not in spite of, his ridiculous attempt to wrench a few of her words out of context and pretend that they meant she was a Madigan flunky.

    Maybe he, or his advisers, will wise up and put a positive spin on his term that will engage and inspire voters. And maybe the Bears will win the Super Bowl, but I’m not buying any tickets.

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