One of my favorite political movies is "Charlie Wilson's War." It's a story based on actual events surrounding "Operation Cyclone," a covert war funded by the U.S. Congress to combat and eventually defeat the Soviet Union during their invasion of Afghanistan. Rep. Charlie Wilson, R-Texas, takes time out of his busy schedule of boozing and philandering to do something historically important, a feat unexpected of a congressman with so little potential. This defeat of the Soviets is credited by many as instrumental to the Soviet government's ultimate demise. At the end of the movie, while celebrating a milestone in the conflict, the ...

Rock and roll will see us through this rough patch we have had. It's the kind of purpose music serves after all: to calm, to comfort, and to inspire those who need it. My wife and I got to see one of our favorite performers a couple of weeks ago.  Amos Lee treated the people at the Murat Theater to a typical show featuring his distinctive vocals and his trademark subject matter of relationships.  He sings about relationships to people and places. He sings about symbolic and otherwise insignificant objects from time to time and then rips into rockers about his ...

I think I am gonna change things up around here after this brutal campaign season. These last few months, it seems I have spent too much time sitting at my kitchen counter reading and writing, then writing and reading some more.  Actually, I plan to keep doing that.  But I am planning on much of the tabloid style content that has been overwhelming my readers to fizzle out in the days and week's that follow November 8. That way, I can restake my claim as the edgy smart aleck who isn't afraid to write about the tough topics.  "Tough" means difficult in ...

Keith Cooper is becoming a household name around here these days.  It's ironic because all he wants from the State of Indiana is to have his name given back to him. Cooper is an African American convicted felon who lives in Chicago. He was released from the Indiana Department of Correction in 2006, after spending nearly ten years in prison, much of it at Wabash Valley Correctional Facility. He wants Gov. Mike Pence to issue a pardon for his conviction for an uncommon reason: he is innocent. In 1997, Cooper was convicted in Elkhart County of armed robbery and sentenced to 40 years in prison. ...

Governing requires attention to detail. It has been a rough stretch in Indiana regarding the details, and frankly, I am outraged by it. The screw ups all belong to Republicans due to their near exclusive control of state government.  But when I pointed out yet another faux pas this week, I was basically told by a Democrat, that the electorate doesn't care about the "process." She may be right, but today I write why she should be wrong. Gustavo Flaubert, the French novelist, is credited by many for the origin of the old saying, "the devil is in the detail."  While searching briefly ...