A Reality Check

Posted on Mon 12/02/2013 by


PP_Burt Prelutsky_2012-05-29By Burt Prelutsky  ~ 

It’s mainly because we get to see senators on TV all the time, making pronouncements from on high that when it comes to handicapping presidential runs, senators get most of the attention. However, all that being a senator prepares you for is voting. That’s because the Senate is part of the legislative branch of government, whereas being president puts you atop the executive branch.

Being a governor, however, is similar to being a president. He has to know how to work with legislative bodies in which most of its members might belong to a different party. He has to know how to delegate responsibility. In short, he has to be an executive smart enough to surround himself with competent staffers, and not merely possess a voice box and a compulsion to see himself on the evening news. That is why I hope to see someone like Scott Walker, Mike Pence or Bobby Jindal, heading up the GOP ticket in 2016.

I wouldn’t object to someone like Ted Cruz, Rand Paul or Marco Rubio, being a running mate, if it’s necessary to provide geographical balance to the ticket or to help carry an important state.

Unlike others, I look back longingly on the days when a few savvy party bosses picked the candidates, and didn’t leave it up to primaries and state caucuses to thin the herd. All those do is waste a ton of money and leave the eventual candidate bloody, while bestowing the Democrats with a multitude of sound bites with which they can then pummel their opponent in the general election.

In New York City, mayoral candidate Bill De Blasio, who brags about having worked for ACORN, vows to take the city in a new leftist direction. His first step in that direction will be to eliminate the NYPD’s “Stop and Frisk” program that has lowered New York’s murder rate under both Rudy Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg. In most municipalities, that, alone, would cost De Blasio the election. But because most New Yorkers use their brains as seat cushions, he is the prohibitive favorite to wind up with the keys to Gracie Mansion.

Meanwhile, in D.C., 61 senators chose to allow the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) come to a vote, although the seven Republicans – Ayotte, Portman, Toomey, Heller, Collins, Hatch and Kirk – were holding out for amendments that would permit religious employers some leeway when it came to hiring homosexuals, bisexuals and members of the transgender crowd. Maybe it’s just me, but even if my religion was okay with it, if I were an employer, I really wouldn’t want to have to hire someone I didn’t want to hire. It seems to me that if it’s okay to deprive service to people who aren’t wearing shoes and shirts, it should be an employer’s right not to hire people who feel the need to act out their sexual freakiness on his premises.

The so-called architect of ENDA, Chai Feldman, a member of Obama’s Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, was recently quoted saying that in a conflict between those in her protected classes and those who feel their religious rights are being trampled, “I can’t even imagine a situation in which I’d come down on the side of the religious.” Very odd, you’d think, coming from the daughter of a rabbi. But these days, most rabbis, being to the left of Nancy Pelosi, would probably applaud her.

I confess I can’t come to grips with those who think that Republicans should be more willing to compromise with the Democrats. For one thing, as we saw during the passage of the Affordable Care Act, the Democrats wouldn’t even pretend to consider one of the 85 amendments offered by House Republicans; and, for another, at the so-called bi-partisan meeting hosted by the newly-elected president in 2009, as soon as John McCain opened his mouth to make a suggestion, Obama quickly shut him down, reminding him who had won the election.

But, really, how does anyone expect those who view George Washington, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, as their spiritual fathers to reach accord with those who see Karl Marx, Fidel Castro and Saul Alinsky, in that light?

Speaking of which, can you imagine a worse Thanksgiving than one at which the Emanuel brothers, Rahm and Ezekial, are seated at the table? Rahm, Chicago’s mayor, is a notorious potty mouth, while Ezekial, who is referred to as the Architect of ObamaCare – and actually takes pride in that designation – is a rude and obnoxious motor-mouth who, if you’ve caught his act with Chris Wallace or Megyn Kelly, refuses to let anyone else utter a word in his presence.

While catching hell for repeatedly lying about people being able to hang on to their health insurance and their doctors, Obama predictably accused others of “spreading misinformation, fear and cynicism.” One can only wonder if his Teleprompter has a reflective screen that doubles as a mirror.

Based on the fact that even some of Obama’s lap dogs in the media have joined the chorus calling him a liar, and that about a dozen Democratic senators appear ready to jump ship before the mid-term elections, it appears that hunting season for lame ducks is opening even earlier than usual.

Finally, when I recently saw a headline announcing that actress Michelle Pfeiffer admitted to having once belonged to a cult, I wondered at first why that was newsworthy. Then, reading on, I discovered that in her youth, she had joined a group of fanatical vegans, and not, as I had naturally assumed, the Democratic Party.

Author’s Note: Although I’m still seeking sponsors, my online radio show is on the air, every Wednesday, at 1 p.m. That’s L.A. time. Access www.latalkradio.com, channel 1, and click on Listen Live. You can also download to your iPhone or Android apps. The call-in number is (323)203-0815. I’d like to hear your questions and comments, pro or con. Especially pro.


Burt Prelutsky, a very nice person once you get to know him, was born in Chicago, in 1940, and raised in Los Angeles.He has been a humor columnist for the L.A. Times and a movie critic for Los Angeles magazine. As a freelancer, he has written for the New York Times, TV Guide, Modern Maturity, Emmy, Holiday, American Film, and Sports Illustrated.

For television, he has written for Dragnet, McMillan & Wife, MASH, Mary Tyler Moore, Rhoda, Bob Newhart, Family Ties, Dr. Quinn and Diagnosis Murder. In addition, he has written a batch of terrific TV movies that starred the likes of Jean Stapleton, Ed Asner, Keith Carradine, Mare Winningham, Jean Simmons, Jack Warden, Barnard Hughes, Richard Thomas, Sharon Gless, Sylvia Sidney, Harold Gould and Lillian Gish. He has been nominated for three WGA awards (winning one), won three Christophers, been nominated for a Humanitas and won an Edgar.

Talk about being well-rounded, he plays tennis and poker … and rarely cheats at either.

He is the best-selling author of “Conservatives Are From Mars, Liberals Are From San Francisco,” as well as “Portraits of Success: Candid Conversations with 60 Over-Achievers,” a collection of interviews with subjects such as Newt Gingrich, Carl Reiner, Gary Sinise, Michele Bachmann, Charles Krauthammer, Andrew Breitbart, Paul Ryan, Rick Perry, Pat Boone, John Stossel, Ralph Peters and the late Karl Malden. His book “Liberals: America’s Termites or It’s a Shame That Liberals, Unlike Hamsters, Never Eat Their Young” is available at The Patriot Shop.

He lives in the San Fernando Valley, where he takes his marching orders from a wife named Yvonne and a dog named Duke.