News of the Day -April 12, 2006

News of the Day –April 12, 2006- A Happy and Sweet Pesach!


On this Day in 1945 Franklin Delano Roosevelt died in Warm Springs, Georgia of a massive stroke.


The 32nd President was born on January 30, 1882 and was 63 years old. Aside from natural health problems one accumulates with age, the stress of leading our Nation through 12+ tumultuous years took its toll. Assuredly he died in the service of his country, as many others would on that day in Okinawa and with the Fleet.


The President mourned by countless millions will be remembered as the Soldier of Freedom, the author of the Atlantic Charter, the founder of the United Nations, the originator of Lend-Lease, the creator of the Arsenal of Democracy and among many other titles and attributes, the architect of Victory. The whole free world today should bless his great memory, for he and his great trans-Atlantic partner Winston Churchill were able to overcome great odds, warn their countries of the coming menace, beat back the appeasement and isolationist foes and forge a democratic partnership of the remaining free peoples to triumph over the twin black and brown shirted scourges of Fascism and Nazism.


The weather was beautiful for the Yankee home opener. They started out well, in front of a sellout crowd approaching 55,000 fans, with a three run home run off the bat of Jason Giambi. But much opportunity again was squandered and their young starter Wang couldn’t hold the lead. Shoddy defense and a base running blunder by Bernie Williams took the Yankees out of the lead. Poor relief work by Tanyon (Not the Grand Tanyon) Sturtz almost did the toothless Bombers in again. But after being down 7-4, they rallied for 5 big ones in the 8th, with El Capitan Derek Jeter’s 3 run homer was the crusher. Mariano (Sure Thing) Rivera, though rusty from a lack of work, came in and quieted the pesky Royals for the Yanks 9th opening win in a row at the House that Ruth Built.


Down in DC it was finally fun and games as baseball, with the Nationals, were a generous loving host for the rejuvenated Metsies. Their twin terrors of Reyes and Wright along with Carlos “The Jackal” Beltran pummeled the Nats 7-1. The Mets look like the real deal, and they are playing exiting NL ball. The Yanks had better take them seriously. for the town is up for grabs.


With regards to leakage in DC at the Presidential mansion, Special Prosecutor Fitzgerald maybe ready to drop another bombshell when more Libby Grand Jury testimony is revealed. Bush’s last comments on declassification of secret and sensitive documents were patently laughable. Almost any other decent individual would be so embarrassed that they would have come into sight with a bag on their head. Even his greatest spinmeisters can’t re-shape his bull-tickie into understandable language. They would be better off speaking in “tongues.” The claim that he automatically declassified his selective leak of sensitive information, for political gain, no less, is challenged by the fact that he leaked the story days before his office claimed it was declassified. Can anyone really follow that? Maybe that is like backdating one’s age for an insurance policy? If this “Laurel and Hardy” show weren’t so tragic it would bring the house down. I assume it is bad form to lie over sex, though that happens countless times a day. And, I assume, it is probably worse form to fool-around with one’s intern, but when you a start to “screw” a whole people over classified information, phony stories about weapons that don’t exist, imagined threats and a propensity to “cook the books” now one is really stretching form to a new dimension.


Most people around here are so turned off that they have “written him off” as a complete dunce. All the polls, taken before this recent round of flummery have now collapsed his so-called popularity into the mid 30’s. Just you wait “’Enry ‘Iggins, just you wait.” Now millions of our little brothers from south of the border, down Mejico way, are marching in the streets calling for the political blood of GOP House members who have authored the “Deport Maria and Pedro Bill.” What else is new? What is the next shoe to drop? When will the American people just say, “Go?”


On this 14th Day of Nissan, Jews celebrate Passover all over the world with their friends and family. It is a story of the struggle for freedom, the “Exodus” from slavery from an unfriendly land, and the beginning of a “wandering” that culminated with the return to the “Promised Land.” As usual, this ageless story is an apt metaphor for our time, that not only reminds us of the continuing Jewish struggle to protect Israel, but the magnet America has become for the modern “wanderers” who seek a new “Promised Land.”  


Richard J. Garfunkel


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