Sunday, June 19, 2011

If you voted for Obama (like I did) how's that "Hope and Change" thing working for you?!?

And because I'm in the frame of mind the above headline suggests, I'm writing this with larger "letters" than I usually do.

First of all, sorry for the delay. In a short blog note that was posted a few days ago, I told you that because of an off the charts computer problem that I thought was going to force me to buy a new computer, I couldn't write this blog on Wednesday which I had planned to do. As it turns out, the computer apparently just needed some "rest" and after quite a few hours of being turned off, when I turned it back on, it was (knock on wood) in operational order again.


Between the time the last blog was written and now, many things have happened and I'm hard-pressed to....

I mean, the Republicans had their "debate" last Monday....Iraq is claiming that we are responsible for more than $17,000,000,000 (and counting) that was lost or stolen from cargo planes used by the Bush Administration....Our wonderful "ally", Pakistan arrested 5 CIA informants who helped us find Osama bin Laden....While claiming that the rest of us need to accept cuts in Medicare, Social Security, etc., for the good of our country, Conservative darling, Paul Ryan, like so many of his ilk, (on both sides of the aisle) has been exposed as being a guy who has personally made good money because of other "proposals" he's championed....American troops in Afghanistan are wondering if they can now go home because the original reason for us being there was to capture and or kill Osama bin Laden, but Defense Secretary Robert Gates is telling them, "It's too early to end this war!" and MY response is, WHAAAAT?!?....

Yeah, there was the Anthony Weiner nonsense and a few other things, but let's move on....

And I'll begin with the headline that you see above. For you readers who are relatively new and you haven't had the time to read previous blogs, let me state something that long time readers know about me. I'm a lifetime Republican who voted for Barack Obama. He is the first Democrat I've ever voted for.

Because we never know what's going on behind closed doors at the White House (no matter who the president is), if we've been around long enough, we understand that the president shouldn't get all the credit when good things happen and the president shouldn't get all the blame when bad things happen. But we also need to remember what the very good President Truman once said; "The buck stops here!"

I don't blame President Bush for our horrible economy which pretty much exploded publicly shortly after he won a second term. I think this was simply a case of President Bush being "in over his head".

That's one of the reasons I voted for Barack Obama.

But two years later (as in NOW) I believe that as opposed to being the "Hope and Change" president, President Obama is being exposed as the "BUSH-LIGHT" president.

I mean, look at what he's doing. He has continued Bush's wars. He has continued Bush's tax cuts. He tried to come up with a much needed health care plan that would benefit all of us except for the health insurance fat cats who bleed us dry on a daily basis and he "caved" on the one aspect that would have made this new law a terrific new law as opposed to what it looks like we might end up with. And that's if we end up with anything new at all, besides a plan that will hurt seniors down the road. A plan that was ridiculed by none other than Newt Gingrich until he was shouted down.

Gang, we hear a lot of talk about our "deficit". Yes, we need to do something about our spending. Or if we absolutely need to spend some serious money for something we think is important to all of us, then we need to understand that we'll have to pay a "tax" for that until we get America's finances in order.

And because I'm a guy who believes in "sooner" rather than "later", let's have a tax for these wars we're in. If we think these wars are important, let's pay for them. And THAT ladies and gentlemen is how you begin to decrease our deficit!

Here's another example. Remember when President George H.W. Bush said, "Read my lips! No new taxes!"?!?

When he realized that the Reagan adminstration's economic policies (the trickle down nonsense) that H.W. referred to as "voodoo economics" before Reagan asked H.W. to be his running mate, were proven to be "voodoo economics" while H.W. was president, he raised taxes and that cost him any chance of being elected to a second term.

If President Obama is any kind of "real deal", he needs to see to it that we pay for things like these three wars (don't forget Libya) and other high-ticket deficit adding items we're involved in. If because he's more interested in getting a second term than doing the right thing economically, he will prove to have deserved the nickname I've given him which is, "Bush-Light"!!!

The June 13 Republican "Debates":

Did you watch them? Two hours of entertainment. In fact, they were so entertaining, Michele Bachmann was considered by many to have been the most impressive debater that night. On a positive note, here's what a lot of people need to remember about Congress-woman Bachmann. She has lost only one election (I think it was a school board thing) and she has won (I think) as many as six elections. She has also never "quit" something she was elected for. Michele Bachmann is a big hit on cable shows and as a public speaker because she's apt to say any number of outrageous things that more often than not aren't truthful, but because they're entertaining and she's cute, she gets a "pass" for a lot of her "statements". But Ms. Bachmann is not a stupid person. And anyone who thinks she is, is underestimating her (big mistake) and I think she (at times) plays off of that like I'm sure she did when she was in high school and boys were hitting on her. Buuuut....If Michele Bachmann were to become a candidate who might become the GOP nominee, she will be getting questions the likes of which she hasn't had to deal with yet. Questions about her husband, Marcus, come to mind. Marcus, in addition to being Michele's "chief of staff" so to speak, is also someone who works as a Christian Therapist. I had honestly never heard of that "title" until now, but the fact that Christian Therapist Marcus Bachmann seems to believe that "gay people" can be "cured", is whacha call, interesting. And if she becomes a serious candidate, I'm sure someone will ask Ms. Bachmann if she agrees with her husband. There would also figure to be some questions about a guy who is a well known believer in "White Supremacy" that she has been friendly with. There's also something that's been floating around out there about a son of hers, and if that was brought up in an interview or a debate, she would need to have an explanation ready.

Translation: Politics is a "blood sport", folks. Especially at the level she says she wants to play in now. And only the strong survive.

THOUGHTS and or COMMENTS? Write to me at and I will respond to you A.S.A.P.


Since the last blog, I've seen quite a few television shows, films that are currently on the cable circuit and two new films that I would like to tell you about.

But first, did you see and hear Mark Anthony's singing of our National Anthem prior to game 6 of the NBA Finals that Dallas ended up winning? While watching and listening to Anthony's outstanding performance, I couldn't help but think how blessed this guy is! He's married to Jennifer Lopez, one of the most beautiful women on the planet, she gave him twins, he's a big time singer, she's a big time singer, American Idol judge and actress and that leads me to her latest film that is now on the cable circuit. "The Back-Up Plan", a 2010 film now on Showtime. This film didn't do well as a theatrical release. Her co-star is Alex O'Loughlin along with the cutest little dog you'll ever see. What this film is about is Lopez's character wanting to have a baby and she went through one of those artificial procedures so she could get pregnant. All of a sudden she meets this guy who knocks her socks off. But the "artificial" get pregnant procedure kicks in faster than she thought it would and she is stuck with trying to figure out how to tell the Alex character about something he definitely will have to know.

Yes, there are problems when she drops this on him. But when he's okay with it, she doesn't believe him and we have more conflict.

There are some slow moments in this film, but because Lopez and O'Laughlin have such great chemistry together, you can't help but be happy for them when they're happy, sad for them when they're sad, etc., etc. Gang, I liked this film and the next time one of the Showtime channels shows it, do yourself a favor and check it out. Do you remember that film that Jennifer Lopez did with George Clooney? A film that a lot of people think was the best film either one of them has been a part of? That was the same feeling I had while watching "The Back-Up Plan". Translation: If you have Jennifer Lopez or George Clooney in a film, they'll provide "chemistry" for you. If either of those actors hook up with another actor who can go toe to toe with them chemistry-wise, you're going to be watching some fun entertainment.


How many years has "The Mentalist" been on CBS? A show that stars Simon Baker and Robin Tunney? A few days ago, I saw two rerun episodes on TNT. It was the first time I had ever seen that show. My bad! That is a heck of a good show.

Long time blog reader Alan Ascher (who is also a terrific piano player and photographer who took the picture you see to the right of my latest blog) sent me a note asking me if I had ever seen "Men of a Certain Age" because I had never written anything about it. No, I hadn't and again, my bad. This show is on TNT, Wednesday nights and it stars Ray Romano, Andre Braugher and Scott Bakula. Because I had the pleasure of spending a week as a Guest Star on "Everybody Loves Raymond", I should have known that anything Ray Romano would be involved with figured to be good. And now that I've finally seen "Men of a Certain Age", I can tell you that this is an off the charts terrific show and I recommend it highly.

Couple of other films currently on the cable circuit...

"Valentine's Day", a 2010 film on HBO directed by Garry Marshall ("Pretty Woman", etc., etc.) that has darn near every major actor in Hollywood in this film. I did a lot of smiling while I watched this and I think you will as well.

"Simone", a 2002 film on Encore that stars Al Pacino, Catherine Keener (I'm madly in love with her), Evan Rachel Wood (now that she's an adult, I'm madly in love with her as well), Winona Ryder and Rachel Roberts who plays the role of "Simone". This film has a very interesting twist to it and that's all I'm going to tell you except that if you decide to check it out, I think you'll like it.

"Power", a 1986 film on Encore that stars Richard Gere, Julie Christy, Gene Hackman, Denzel Washington, Kate Capshaw, and E.G. Marshall.
I've seen a lot of Richard Gere films, but I hadn't seen this one. It's a political thriller that had me riveted.

And speaking of Richard Gere....One of my dear friends is the actor, Harold Sylvester who starred in the film, "Officer and a Gentleman" with Richard Gere and he has said nothing but very nice things about Richard Gere to me. I've never met Richard Gere, but I had a brief encounter with him. Like everyone else, I had heard those bogus on top of bogus rumors he dealt with for a while. I never believed any of the rumors, I turned out to be right and I've often said it's a shame he hasn't gotten nominations for films he has starred in, films that have generated Oscar nominations and in some cases Oscar wins for other actors who have been in films with Gere. Puh-Leeze! Gere didn't have something to do with the success of those films?

Okay...Here's my brief encounter story with Richard Gere. 23 or 24 years ago. Maybe 25. Whatever. Late at night. I had just parked my car in the lot of a high end restaurant here in Los Angeles. I was with a young woman I was dating at the time, a former Miss Hawaiian Tropic. We were walking toward the entrance to the restaurant when a man who was walking to his car came towards us. It was Richard Gere. When he got close to us, his eyes went to my date and then back to me and he gave me smile and a wink. One of those "I wish you well with the beauty" winks. We all kept on walking and for one of the very few times in my life, I was tongue-tied. Fast forward to many months later when I found out that was the same night he had been with the ex-wife of a very famous person and who had gotten angry with Gere because after having "the pleasure of her company", he didn't spend the night with her. How do I know this? She wrote about it in a book she wrote.

Two NEW films:

"Super 8", a film about a group of young people who are in the wrong place at the wrong time when a train accident happens, an accident that turns out to more than just an accident. It stars (among others) Kyle Chandler, Joel Courtney, Riley Griffiths, Elle Fanning, Ron Eldard and Bruce Greenwood. It's directed by J.J. Abrams and produced by none other than Steven Spielberg. In today's Los Angeles Times, the great Patrick Goldstein is "on the money" when he makes the point that the first half of this film is better than the second half. While I agree with that, please know that the second half of the film kept me very interested, but that first half was really something special.

"Bridesmaids", a film about an upcoming wedding, problems involving pre-wedding stuff that causes a falling out between the future bride and her best friend and domination of the pre-wedding stuff by an insecure "poor little rich girl".

Gang, I think that "Bridesmaids" is an EXCEPTIONAL FILM!!!

The "Oscar" folks seldom take a film like this seriously when it comes to handing out awards.

"Bridesmaids" is very funny at times, sad at times and at times, it drives you crazy.

And I think it deserves a "Best Picture" nomination at the next "Oscars" show. In fact, of all the films I've seen so far this year, I think "Bridesmaids" should WIN an "Oscar" for Best Picture!

This film stars Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Rose Byrne, Melissa McCarthy and in what was her final film, Jill Clayburgh.

I think that Kristen Wiig is deserving of a Best Actress "Oscar" nomination, and Best Supporting Actress "Oscar" nominations should go to Rose Byrne and Melissa McCarthy.

Yeah, you can say I liked "Bridesmaids" a lot. Hell, I LOVED "Bridesmaids"!!!

Thoughts and or Comments? Please write to me at and I will respond to you as quickly as I can. Please don't write to the blog because there's no way for me to know your email adress which means I wouldn't be able to respond to you. All "Anonymous" emails are ignored.

The next Blog? Good question, huh? The way things have been lately? Hopefully, in a week or so.

Meanwhile, I hope all you dads had a great Father's Day and I hope all you moms made certain of that.

And here's hoping that we all have a great week!

Thursday, June 16, 2011


When I was about to begin writing a new blog last night, everything "crashed" and quite frankly, I was afraid I was going to have to buy a new computer.

Sometime after 11 last night, I turned the computer off. Sometime after 5 this morning, I tried turning it back on and it was (seemingly) working fine again.

Barring any recurrence of problems, sometime before the weekend has ended, a new blog will be posted.

Among other things, some of the topics will be "Hope and Change"...This past Monday's Republican Debate that was pretty much two hours of "Bad Obama This" and "Bad Obama That" while coming up with no sensible solutions for the problems we have...Another reason to not do business with Pakistan...The more than 60 billion dollars in cash that the Bush administration sent to Iraq that no one seems to be able to find...Michele Bachmann and some of her wacky "beliefs" like her claim that "Gay people can be 'cured' from being gay"...And what's up with that white supremacy guy she seems to admire so much?...In "Entertainment Stuff", we'll be mentioning two films worth watching that are currently on the cable circuit and two new films that I think are worth seeing, one of which I believe deserves serious "Oscar" consideration(s)...

Thanks for your patience, a new blog will be written and posted in the next couple of days and I hope that all of you have a great weekend.

Most sincerely,

Scott "The Jammer with the Hammer" St. James.

Sunday, June 05, 2011

America Is In A Ticked Off Frame of Mind!!!

"Ticked off"? That's putting it mildly, gang. According to a brand new poll, most of us are very upset about the condition our condition is in!!!

Check out these poll numbers....56% of Americans are losing sleep over this! (I admit to being one of them!) 63% of Americans say they've experienced a lower sex drive! 68% of Americans believe that the bought and paid for (by lobbyists) Congress people are wrong about reducing taxes for the rich as a way to balance the budget! 68% and climbing! More on that coming up later in this blog. 70% of the American people are nervous about their retirement! (As am I!) Because of this economy, 57% of Americans say their relationship with their spouse has become worse! 50% of Americans think President Obama has no real plan to balance the budget! 40% think he does. (I'm in the "don't" category!) So this all means big time "love" for Republicans, instead? Ain't there! 58% of Americans say the GOP is just laying the blame on Obama rather than making their own proposals! 29% of Americans have "love" for the GOP. 67% of Americans are mad at God for this economic mess of ours! (You know Americans are big time ticked off when they start blaming GOD!)

There is more in this poll, but I'm not leaving out anything that would make the GOP or Tea Party people happy.

I have some possible solutions and I'll tell you the kind of country we might have if ultra conservatives had their way, but first, I'd like to share a letter to the editor that was written by highly decorated WWII veteran and "Boss Radio radio legend, Bill Mouzis.

"Let me see if I have this right. The Republicans get us into the worst recession of our lives and now they are campaigning on the grounds that Obama has done nothing to get us out of it?!? Also, with high unemployment rates continuing to drag down the economy, one has to wonder where are the jobs that were to be created as a result of the massive tax cuts for the "wealthy" engineered by Bush and his merry band of bandits, Cheney and Rove."

Thank you, Bill Mouzis! Ah, yes! Those tax cuts for the rich! The "Big SOLUTION" for our economic mess. More of that trickle down nonsense that has never worked for anyone BUT the rich! The first President Bush had it right when he referred to that kind of thinking as "Voodoo Economics"! The architect of the "trickle down" theory, David Stockman, has since stated (publicly) that he was wrong.

What I'm about to write now are (in my view) a few possible solutions for the mess our country is in, a policy statement regarding opinions expressed on this blog and what might possibly be the type of country we'd end up with if ultra conservatives had their way.

Opinions and or endorsements stated by me are not bought and paid for by anyone! Never have been, never will be! While working with the great broadcaster Joe Benson here in Los Angeles, Joe, while smiling, once referred to me as a "contrarian". I accept that description. A description that has cost me previous broadcast employment and advertising revenue for this blog by people who want "A voice" in the opinions I express here.

I don't pretend to have all the answers required to get us out of the economic mess we're in, but I do have a few ideas that if implemented, would in my view, get us started on the right track back to solvency.

Medicare and Social Security are labeled by many on the "Right" as being "expensive albatrosses" that must either be ended and or totally revamped.

Counter argument: The fact that a lot of that money that we (the workers) put into those systems was used by Congress people for other things is a glaring reason that we have a "trouble revenue problem date" that is a lot earlier than it should be.


Our deficit problem, a problem that could lead America into bankruptcy.

Yeah, that's serious business, folks. But do you see who or what gets blamed for this? The usual kinds of folks or "safety net people" who can't fight back.

And I'm not referring to illegal immigrants who "game" our system and cost us billions of dollars. The fact that our government has allowed this to happen is a crime unto to it's ownself. We're told that it would be impossible to deport all these illegal immigrants, but I would have no problem if we at least tried to do that. More on the illegal immigrant thing later in this blog.

Back to our deficit problem and a few things NO one talks about regarding how we got into this deficit problem mess.

Iraq, Afghanistan and recently, Libya.

We've had troops in Iraq and Afghanistan for what? 10-years and counting? Countless numbers of our troops have been killed and or returned home with one or no arms, one or no legs, a combination of those horrific injuries, off the charts mental injuries, etc., etc. The injuries requiring treatment will be paid by us for the rest of their lives. And let us not forget death insurance we pay for those killed in the line of duty. Let is also not forget the massive amounts of equipment, planes, helicopters, ammunition, etc., etc. that we are continually paying for.

And HOW have we been paying for all of this during the last ten years or so? By "credit card"! Trillions of dollars. You think THAT might have something to do with our deficit? I do! And from day one of the Afghanistan and Iraq "adventures", I have felt like a lone voice while stating in essence, "If these wars are so important, why aren't we adding a tax to pay for them and or why aren't we considering a reinstatement of the military draft and find out how important the rest of America thinks these wars are!"

And now Libya. Also on the "credit card". And our deficit continues to rise.

FOREIGN AID: We're going broke and we continue to give foreign countries billions upon billions of dollars in cash and equipment? When the White House recently announced that they were giving billions to Egypt, I felt like puking.

What do you think giving billions upon billions to foreign countries is doing to our deficit?

But no, the people with the loudest voices say (in essence) the biggest deficit problem we have is associated with Social Security, Medicare and anything else that smacks of being a "safety net" of some kind for people who aren't wealthy.

I'll be happy to listen to that argument once you tell me why wars get a free ride, it's okay to steal money that is meant for Social Security, Medicare, etc., etc., illegal immigrants get a free ride and foreign countries (with their hands held out) get a free ride.

REDUCE THE DEFICIT? Yes, I'm in favor of that. But I'm not in favor of reducing taxes for the wealthy while we need to reduce the deficit. I'm not in favor of outfits like the former Blackwater crowd getting billions from us for our war activities while we show no desire to have all of America participating in the cost of these adventures.

And let me fast forward to what kind of country we could become if we were to take the direction as suggested by our extreme Tea Party, Conservative and Liberal "bought and paid for" types. Pakistan. Want a cool homework assignment? Check out their tax situation, how they feel about religion, gays, bending over for the rich, let the down and out have to fend for themselves, etc., etc.

Thoughts and or comments? Write to me at and I'll respond ASAP. All "Anonymous" emails are ignored.

Other quick stuff:

Are we tired of Weiner Gate, yet?

Will former Senator John Edwards end up going to jail?

Have you heard about "Mama Grizzly" being upset with the new close male friend her daughter Bristol now has? She's quoted as saying that relationship could make the family "look bad", but Bristol has reportedly told Mama Ex-Governor to "Back off and let me lead my own life!"

I stated earlier in this blog that there would be something else relating to illegal immigrants that I would write. What you're about to read is a letter a North Hollywood reader sent to the Los Angeles Times that was printed yesterday:

"What is it with our elected officials and police chiefs who make reference to illegal immigrants who should not be deported because it may cause hardships to them and their families? So what if they didn't commit any serious crimes. For starters, what about illegally entering the country?

Silly me, I thought elected officials and all law-enforcement officers swore an oath to uphold and enforce all laws. They should not exclude those crimes that may provide political or other advantages.

I guess selective law enforcement is the new standard (except for my parking tickets--no selectivity there)."

Short commentary: Amen, Brother!


James Arness! The lawman we loved to watch. For 20 years on the television show, "Gunsmoke"! He was 88-years old when he died two days ago. As you probably know, Arness wasn't the first choice for this role. The network and the producers wanted John Wayne. Wayne wanted nothing to do with the hours that are associated with a television show and he was also a friend of the man who would eventually be known as, "Marshal Dillon". Wayne recommended Arness, but Arness had just begun a little bit of a film career that included working on four films with John Wayne, but Wayne talked Arness into taking the role and the rest, as they say, is history.

P.S. Before the first episode of "Gunsmoke" aired, an on camera announcement was made. By none other than John Wayne, who at that time was the biggest star in Hollywood. Wayne told the audience that, "I knew there was only one man to play in it, James Arness. He's a young fella and may be new to some of you. But I've worked with him, and I predict he'll be a big star. So you might as well get used to him, like you've had to get used to me."

Can you imagine what the introduction from John Wayne must have felt like to the (then) very young James Arness?

You done good, Mr. Arness. R.I.P.

One new television show and two films to tell you about....

"Franklin & Bash", Wednesday nights on TNT. It stars Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Breckin Meyer, Malcolm McDowell, Reed Diamond and some terrific supporting players. Fun show.

In 2009, the film, "Brooklyn's Finest" was released. I saw it on cable a few nights ago. It stars Richard Gere, Don Cheadle, Ethan Hawke, Wesley Snipes, Vincent D'Onofrio, Will Patton and Ellen Barkin. This is a dark drama that I couldn't take my eyes off of. Heavy stuff, folks, but these fine actors make the viewing worth your time. If you haven't seen it, check it out.

"Takers" is a film that made it's television debut on STARZ last night. It was released in 2010 and stars Matt Dillon, Paul Walker, Chris Brown, Hayden Christensen, Michael Ealy, Idris Elba, T.I., Zoe Saldana, Marianne Jean-Baptiste and Zulay Henao. This is about a gang of upscale criminals who are very good at what they do. Matt Dillon plays one of the detectives who tries to catch these guys. A lot of "cat and mouse" kind of stuff and near the end, a whole lot of ammunition is used. In between the action are a couple of very interesting side issues that keep our attention. This is a good popcorn flick and when you're in that kind of mood, I highly recommend this film.

QUESTIONS AND OR COMMENTS? Please write to me at and I will respond to you as quickly as I can. Please don't write to the blog because there's no way for me to know your email address so I won't be able to respond to you. All "Anonymous" emails are ignored.

The Next Blog? I'm shooting for next Sunday, but things have been a little crazy lately, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed. If for whatever reason I have to delay, I'll write a short blog stating that and what the new date will be.

Meanwhile, I hope that all of you have a great week!