Articles Posted by jfd1776

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  • The False Promise of Tariff-Driven Prosperity

    03/02/2018 5:45:21 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 56 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | March 2, 2018 A.D. | John F Di Leo
    Tariffs are a wonderful idea, aren’t they? A tariff – technically, a tax on an imported good, usually as a percentage of the good's value – sounds almost too good to be true. A tariff raises money on imports, but encourages Americans to stop importing, and to buy local goods instead of foreign; it serves a foreign policy purpose by punishing our enemies, and it helps pay for seaports and border protection. Quite a multifaceted, targeted tool. It’s like one of those magical diet pills that helps you get thinner in the waist, broader in the shoulders and chest, make...
  • Lessons to be Learned from Third World Tragedies and Horrors

    02/24/2018 7:20:43 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 10 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | February 23, 2018 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    On Wednesday, February 21, a bus tumbled over a cliff in Peru, killing at least 44 passengers. The bus was traveling on a narrow but important highway, the Pan-American Highway in the state of Arequipa, and the news horrified the nation, as it came less than two months after another almost-identical bus crash on January 2, also killing dozens of victims, on the same stretch of highway, an area so serpentine that sections are known by names like “Devil’s Curve.” Such events occur on a daily basis in the third world, but rarely make the international news. Much of the...
  • Judging a Book by its Cover is More Dangerous Than Ever.

    02/14/2018 5:44:18 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 3 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | February 14, 2018 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on Jeff Sessions and our "Anglo-American" legal system… Among the first truisms we learn as children is the old saying “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” Good advice, any way you look at it. Antique dealers, realtors, food critics, and a thousand other professions will attest to the fact that the contents are often either much better or much worse than a product’s first appearance. The newspaper business, however, was supposed to be an exception to this rule. Traditionally, a headline was a pull quote or summary statement about one of the key elements in an article, so...
  • Federal Budget's Red Ink and Storm Clouds Aren't Black and White

    02/09/2018 3:51:06 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 1 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | February 9, 2018 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on a Federal Budget Impasse... During the February budget showdown in Washington, Senator Rand Paul rose to speak. He reminded America of our spending habit – a constant pattern of deficit spending, year-in and year-out, in both Republican and Democrat administrations. A spending habit that doesn’t just cause a year of trouble, but an eternity of trouble, since these deficits add up, year by year, into a mountainous national debt, one that doubled – Doubled! – in just the eight years of the Obama administration alone. And he is right. ... But this is not one of those areas...
  • A Welcome Address by an American President

    01/31/2018 5:42:37 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 6 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | January 31, 2018 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on a State of the Union Message... “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.” “Mr. Gorbachev: Tear Down This Wall!” Every politician, when making a speech, hopes to hit a few major themes, and hopes to include lines that are as descriptive and memorable as the quotes above from Presidents Lincoln, Kennedy, and Reagan… but it’s a lot to hope for. In recent years, the State of the Union message has largely become an annual laundry list of spending proposals, some with...
  • Americans Cherish Life. Time to Reject Roe v Wade's Outdated Anti-Life Culture

    01/22/2018 8:42:37 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 2 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | January 22, 2018 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    It rained in Chicagoland last night. That may not sound particularly exceptional, but it’s mid-January, and it’s been very cold lately; we usually get our precipitation in the form of nice fluffy snow this time of year. But it rained – hard – and that caused the night crawlers, gasping for breath, to climb out of the ground and slither onto our sidewalks and pavements, to escape drowning in the waterlogged soil. And we humans, being nice folks who never want to take another life without cause, watch our step, as we walk to and from our cars. We try...
  • American Presidents, Through the Years

    01/22/2018 7:16:08 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 8 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | January 22, 2018 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on Presidents and the Presidency, on Inauguration Day President George Washington was inaugurated on April 30, 1789, but not by choice. He had been in town, ready to take office, for weeks already… but the newly-elected Congress took their time arriving, as the president, anxious to get started, had to cool his heels. They needed a quorum, to ratify the results of the electors, and to put together a republican response to the monarchial tradition of the formal coronation – with all its pomp and circumstance – to which the rest of the world was accustomed. But as much...
  • Setting the Record Straight on Israel

    01/18/2018 10:10:35 AM PST · by jfd1776 · 3 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | January 17, 2017 | John F. Di Leo
    Today, in lieu of a normal column, would you mind if we just set a few things straight? There are issues in which a combination of forces – from conscious choices by politicians and academics to sheer ignorance by reporters and vocal but confused stars in the popular culture – have combined to cause complete misunderstandings across the country, and even across the world. In his great speech endorsing Senator Goldwater in 1964, “A Time for Choosing,” (commonly known simply as The Speech), President Ronald Reagan first made a statement that has long resonated with those of us who watch...
  • The Founding Fathers and the Immigration Debate

    01/14/2018 7:28:03 AM PST · by jfd1776 · 18 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | January 12, 2018 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    As we debate the ongoing question of immigration – not just who and how many to allow in, but also when, if ever, to allow them to vote – it might be helpful to remember the thoughts of our Founders on the issue. It is now common for one side of the debate to say “we’re a nation of immigrants,” giving rise to the assumption that we always believed in open borders in the past, so this current concern about a wave of cultural invaders is something new… but in fact, nothing could be further from the truth. 215 years...
  • 2018 Begins with a Cornucopia Created by Tax Reform

    01/04/2018 8:00:00 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 3 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | January 4, 2018 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    We've all heard the stories about how several big companies decided to give bonuses immediately after the December 2017 tax reform was passed... but the mainstream media quickly dropped the story. What we haven't heard about over the past week or so is how the list of companies has grown. (compliments to the good folks at Americans for Tax Reform for committing to build a running list online). Some are relatively small businesses, like banks that have a couple hundred employees... but it's remarkable how many big companies have jumped on the bonus bandwagon too. For example: - AT&T: $1000...
  • In The Coming Boom, Inequality Will Be By Choice

    12/30/2017 5:54:28 AM PST · by jfd1776 · 12 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | December 29, 2017 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    What is it that ends a recession, and finally brings about an economic boom? After a long and painful “non-recovery recovery” – a decade-long stretch in which job growth and the labor force non-participation rate remained flat – the federal government has finally accomplished, in 2017, the primary contributions that it can make to bring about a real recovery: By year-end, Congress had passed, and the president had signed, a long-overdue tax cut, reducing the tax rate that employers pay by nearly a half. It wasn’t enough, and we will need to add additional cuts in a phase two and...
  • Finding Winners and Losers in the 2017 Tax Reform

    12/20/2017 8:25:16 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 10 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | December 20, 2017 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    The primary goal of the mainstream media and their puppets in Washington known as the Democratic Party (or is it the other way around? It’s so hard to tell these days…) is now to study the 2017 Tax Reform plan and identify who directly benefits most, and who directly benefits least, so that the program can be portrayed as a contest between winners and losers. This is logical in their zeitgeist – a world that operates under the “zero sum game” theory of the anti-capitalist mentality. They believe the economy is a pie, so if someone gets a bigger slice,...
  • A House Divided... and A President's Tweets

    12/04/2017 1:53:44 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 7 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | December 4, 2017 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    On December 3, President Trump issued an interesting tweet… not terribly unusual for him, as that’s how he communicates with the American people. Just as Ronald Reagan was famous for “going over the heads of the press and speaking directly to the people,” Donald Trump uses today’s technology to accomplish the same end. As a result, he is better able to command the political narrative than most Republican presidents (Democrats don’t need to find such methods, since the press has long acted as Democrat presidents’ house organ). In this particular tweet, President Trump said that the FBI’s “reputation is in...
  • The Bill of Rights, and the Safety of a Nation Under Attack

    11/07/2017 8:00:11 AM PST · by jfd1776 · 2 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | November 6, 2017 A.D. | John F Di Leo
    Another horrible shooting has the Left talking about gun control, as if people already in violation of tons of other laws would be dissuaded by one more. So the Right responds by focusing on the Second Amendment, which is certainly legitimate and relevant, as it was intended to protect the American people from all manner of assaults, whether from a mugger in an alley, a street gang in the neighborhood, an enemy abroad, or a tyrant in our own capitol.. ...but we often forget the relevance of another Amendment, the First, which is increasingly under assault, particularly in the context...
  • The Modern Left and the New Death Penalty

    11/02/2017 12:02:07 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 9 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | November 1, 2017 A.D. | John F Di Leo
    It is well known that the modern Democratic party does not believe in the concept of capital punishment for crimes, even for the crimes long regarded as of a “capital” nature, such as murder, violent robbery, violent rape, and treason. They advocate jail time, preferably brief, in cozy, comfortable cells, of regulation size… and if there isn’t enough room, the Left mandates that the prisons be opened so the overflow can walk free, rather than be incarcerated for their crimes in harsh, uncomfortable surroundings. But this isn’t to say that the modern Left opposes the death penalty completely. In fact,...
  • Washington, D.C. and the Problem of Time

    10/26/2017 6:50:02 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 6 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | October 25, 2017 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    “We have plenty of time.” When we’re young, everyone thinks we have time… plenty of time. We tell our children to study, to eat, to exercise, to learn, and they look at the clock, and they look at their parents, and what do they think? “What do those haggard, grey-haired grown-ups know? I’m a kid; I have plenty of time.” The same continues as we age. In our twenties, we date for fun and put off marriage; there’s still plenty of time. In our thirties, we spend our money on houses and vacations rather than saving for retirement; there’s still...
  • The Soda Tax: A Single Victory or a Blueprint for the Future?

    10/13/2017 9:18:20 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 13 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | October 13, 2017 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    In November, 2016, the Cook County Board of Confiscators created a new tax on most non-alcoholic beverages – punitive, astronomical, and unconstitutional. Virtually everything that could be wrong with a government policy was wrong with this one, and the community reacted with unexpected force. County commissioners reported receiving more complaints about this issue than on any other issue in their careers. Despite a united front held by County Board President Toni Preckwinkle through the summer 2017 implementation, the resolve of her members soon withered as the real effects of the hated tax began to be felt. In the end, it...
  • Mark Kirk v2.0 - The 2018 Illinois Governor's Race

    10/06/2017 12:41:32 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 16 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | October 6, 2017 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    In the summer and fall of 2015, many Illinois Republicans called for the party to retire incumbent US Senator Mark Kirk in the primary. Despite some party pressure, but obviously not enough, he refused to sit out the election. He campaigned for re-nomination, which scared both candidates and money out of the primary, and he won the spring… losing the fall as everyone predicted. Mark Kirk was elected narrowly in 2010, in a race that should have been a landslide even in Illinois. It was the best year for the Republican party in generations, and he was fortunate to have...
  • There's More to that Knee than Meets the Eye

    09/29/2017 9:43:54 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 17 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | September 28, 2017 | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on the meaning behind an NFL insult... Professional football players started refusing to stand for the National Anthem during the 2016 season, and it began as just a trickle of weirdos like Colin Kaepernick… but by late September, 2017, hundreds of pro football players were kneeling down during the National Anthem that begins the game, or even refusing to leave their locker room for it. This is obviously an issue for football players, owners, and fans. But some have asked why non-football fans care about it at all, much as theatergoers ask why what happens in a play or...
  • Lessons from a Restaurant Tabletop

    09/19/2017 4:22:21 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 16 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | September 19, 2017 A.D. | John F Di Leo
    If you sit down at a major national restaurant chain nowadays, you might be greeted by a sign, banner, or tabletop tent quoting some questionable statistics, and warning you that there is hunger in America. They quote a study (out of context) reporting that one in six American children “experiences” hunger at least sometimes. “That’s 13 million children, the population of Illinois” as the tabletop tent at lunch exclaimed to me, constantly, as I ate my lunch. This brings to mind a flood of questions, among them: Is it true? If so, Why? And What can or should we do...