Here are some thoughts about recent news developments:

1) The Michael Vick dog-fighting indictments have opened many eyes about this brutal, barbaric practice.

And as awful as the details are, we all have a duty as citizens to learn and know what these alleged crimes are - so that we can apply pressure on authorities to go after this crime and try to put a stop to it.

How we treat animals is an indication of society; if we tolerate cruelty, then we, too, are barbarians. And it appears a sub-culture of the United States indeed regards this disgusting activity as a legitimate ‘sport.’ This must stop.

2) The YouTube/CNN Democratic Presidential Debate showed why we can’t have any of the Democrats be elected president. What a crew! They make the famous bar scene in Star Wars look main-stream!

An idea: what if Talk Radio hosts around the country banned together and held a Talk Radio GOP Presidential Debate this fall - to be simulcast on dozens of talk radio shows and stations around the country - with questions coming over the phone like any other talk radio show?

And if some TV network wanted to simulcast it, that’s fine. But the main thrust is the vast talk radio universe of listeners and callers.

3) Soft drinks: the new study which shows that soft drinks - even diet ones - can cause us to have diabetes, heart disease, bad blood results (i.e. high tryglicerides etc.) and metabolic disease - is Big News. We all need to pay attention to this because - if true - and the diet soda lobbyists are already disputing it - it may help explain the epidemic of obesity we see daily all around us.

4) Presidential Race: On the GOP side it is clear that McCain is gone. He may not yet know it - and his MSM buddies will still try to shore him up for a while, but it ain’t happening for McCain. He’s toast.

Giuliani and Romney lead the pack, Ron Paul gathers online momentum which has not yet translated into poll numbers worth talking about, and everyone awaits the entry of Fred Thompson.

More and more, however, political insiders are talking about what an inevitable ‘bust’ Thompson will be. Some even speculate he will formally enter the race in September, bomb out and then be out of the race by November.

Prediction: he will indeed be a major disappointment to his supporters. Whether he drops out or not, he will fail to galvanize the GOP like so many have anticipated. Indeed, we conservatives want a Savior - another Reagan-like figure - to ride to our party’s and our country’s rescue. And that political savior will appear someday. But whether it is in time for the 2008 race - or years from now when things are in even worse shape - is still to be answered.

5) The Democrats: As of today, Obama is taking off the gloves against Hillary - and John Edwards can’t get any attention unless he trots out his wife and has her attack either Ann Coulter or Hillary Clinton.

What a way to pick a president!!!

Yes, the national polls show Hillary’s lead over Obama stabilizing or expanding. But it means nothing - absolutely nothing - at this point.

The race won’t come into focus until December - about a month before Iowa. And Edwards is strong there. And Hillary has troubles there, too.

6) Money Race: the most distressing - and telling - news lately is the huge advantage Democrats have in money raised across the board - Presidential, House and Senate - and in cash-on-hand. They have an over-two-to-one advantage - unheard of in modern politics except for 1974 and Watergate.

The democrats have also husbanded their money better - they have a three-to-one advantage in cash-on-hand.

This - more than anything else - tells us just how dispirited Republican donors are - and we’re talking about $50 givers, not just fat cats.

This is a key indicator of next year. And, as of now, the Democrats have all the momentum.

They will expand their hold on the House and Senate; no one seriously questions that today.

As for the White House, while they seem giddy about their chances, Hillary still presents a major problem. People don’t like or trust her.

She might win - or she might not - even in a year that is defintely trending Democrat.

There is still a long, long way to go.

And many more surprises.


Tonight on Bloomberg TV, former congressman Bill Hendon - the co-author of the New York Times Best Seller AN ENORMOUS CRIME; The Definitive Account of US POWs Abandoned in SE Asia - will appear on Bloomberg’s main evening show, NIGHT TALK with Mike Schneider.

The hidden story, however, is that - eight weeks after the book was published - this is the first television invitation Hendon or his co-author, MIA daughter and lawyer Beth Stewart, have received.

AN ENORMOUS CRIME made the NY Times Best Seller list a mere eight days after publication - without a penny spent on publication.

The two co-authors have blanketed the Talk Radio circuit; and Newsmax.com did a fantastic job publicizing and emailing news about the book.

But the so-called mainstream news media - CBS, CNN, NBC, ABC, MSNBC - even Fox News Channel - have totally refused to have the authors on any of their shows.

What are they afraid of?

Why do they not want the public to hear the truth about the abandonment of 700 US POWs in 1973?

In light of 155,000 troops today in Iraq, isn’t what happened to POWs from another war a relevant subject to discuss?

The Book is still Number One on the Amazan.com Vietnam War list.

The Pentagon is still receiving credible reports of US POWs being held in SE Asia.

AN ENORMOUS CRIME contains satellite imagery, radio intercepts and scores of human intelligence reports that prove our government knowingly left 700 US POWs behind - alive and held against their will - and that many are still alive.

The book is based entirely on 66,000 pages of never-before-published United States Government de-classified intelligence reports.

So far the U.S. Government has refused to comment on AN ENORMOUS CRIME.

Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger refuses to read AN ENORMOUS CRIME, stating, “There is nothing new here.”

Oh, really?

How would he know if he won’t read it?

How do you know what is in a book if you don’t read it?

Can you imagine if one of his Harvard students had refused to read something from the assigned reading list by stating, “There is nothing new here”?

Some of these television producers, when they have declined to have the authors on their shows, say things like, “There is no smoking gun here.”

Oh, really?

The book - and the associated web site www.enormouscrime.com - are full of examples of US POWs trying to communicate that they are still alive and want to be brought home! Satellite and aerial photography, radio intercepts and hundreds of live sighting information are throughout the book - and yet these TV people say there is “no smoking gun.”

What are they afraid of?

Others have told me that these mostly liberal TV people believe “the POW issue is a nutty right wing conspiracy issue.”

Oh, really?

Why would Billy Hendon and I - two of the leading ‘POW activists’ - and both lifelong proud conservative Reagan Republicans - why would we set out to go after our fellow Republicans: Nixon, Kissinger, the first Bush, Cheney, Scowcroft, Wolfowitz, Armitage, Powell and many others?

And almost all the POW activists happen to be Republicans, too. And it saddens us all that we have to go after Republican Administrations for their perfidious activities in this issue.

For example, go to www.enormouscrime.com and read the Chapter 23 cover-up section to learn how our Pentagon distorts and debunks report after report of live US POWs still being held in Vietnam and Laos.

This issue - more than nay other - illustrates just how rotten our government can be - and how lazy and biased the so-called mainstream news media has become.

What are they really afraid of?


No 2008 GOP candidate has as much ‘going on’ on the Internet than Congressman Ron Paul.

His passionate supporters are networking over the Web and through emails much more effectively than the 3 so-called top-tier GOP candidates - Romney, Giuliani and McCain - although why we even list McCain as ‘top-tier’ any more is beyond me. Ah, the McCain-loving Mainstream Media...

Indeed, there is a positive passion for Ron Paul that eclipses anything current in the Republican race. Why is this?

Because Ron Paul - a lifelong libertarian conservative - represents more and more people who realize that GW Bush’s brand of Republicanism should be called Big Government Republicanism. The post-9/11 expansion of federal power combined with the ill-conceived pre-emptive invasion of Iraq - when we had not been attacked by Iraq - are decidedly non-conservative actions.

But, in the afterglow of 9/11 these libertarians were drowned out in the rush to embrace President Bush and show the world a united front.

Now, with the collapse of the Bush Administration, Republicans are looking for something new, something that fits their beliefs.

Ron Paul is the ‘hottest’ GOP candidate at the moment. While McCain is in free-fall and his campaign is effectively over, Mitt Romney has seen his contributions fall off heavily in the just-completed second quarter because the Mormon fund-raising network is tapped out. So, too, are the Massachusetts Republican donors. And Rudy Giuliani is now under attack for his supposed strength: his handling of 9/11. The International Firefighters’ Union has Swift Boated Rudy with a dynamite 13-minute DVD called Rudy Giuliani - Urban Legend. This DVD shows things that Rudy did leading up to 9/11 that most voters don’t yet know about - including his decision in the late 1990's after the first World Trade Center bombing in 1993 to place the city’s emergency command bunker at the World Trade Center! And, sure enough, at 5 PM on 9/11 that bunker - in Building Number Seven - collapsed. Not very smart thinking, was it?

Nor was Rudy’s refusal to buy good radios for the NY Fire Department - despite repeated instances of failure and repeated requests from the NYFD. Over 300 NYPD firefighters died in the trade center towers because they never heard the evacuate order!

So the bloom has clearly begun to fall off the Rudy rose.

That leaves us with the so-called second tier candidates: Congressmen Duncan Hunter, Tom Tancredo and Ron Paul, senator Sam Brownback and the now just-departed-from-the-race Jim Gilmore.

Dr. Paul has been the only one to jump out of this group; Duncan Hunter, a good fellow, has done nothing to stand out. Tancredo, the hero of the immigration issue, has actually been a major disappointment in the debates. Brownback is hopeless - and shot himself down over his call for amnesty for illegals.

A few other intriguing facts about Congressman Ron Paul:

• He has more cash on hand in his campaign than McCain does;

• He first stood out in this race when he got into it with Giuliani over the real reason for the 9/11 attacks - and Rudy took a cheap shot at him. But Representative Paul correctly described the conclusions of the 9/11 Commission Report that the Islamists see the USA as meddling in Arab/Muslim matters - and they want us out of their region. And they see us as partners with the cruel, repressive oil-funded corrupt regimes over there - i.e. the Saudi Royal Family;

• Ron Paul has a growing following - as witnessed by his email and online campaign;

• His is a campaign of ideas - not a cult following. Libertarianism will attract even more followers.

• Ron is a great hitter in baseball. We played in 1981 and 1982 on the House Republican Baseball Team and he has great wrists!

Now, how will Ron Paul do in this campaign?

Will he ultimately vault up into the Top Tier?

He will do better than the so-called MSM believes - who cares what these guys think anyway?

But Ron will not do as well as his supporters hope.

However the ultimate GOP nominee will learn that much of Ron’s message has a growing audience and should be heard.

Who will that nominee be? And will he have a chance in November ‘08?

Well, we still have a long, long way to go. We still have the possible entrance of Fred Thompson and maybe Newt Gingrich into the race. And the inevitable collapse of McCain.

So Iowa is still six months away.

Look for some surprising twists and turns between now and then.


1) The GOP is dispirited like nothing we have seen since Watergate. GOP primary voters are disgusted with just about everything from amnesty-for-illegals to the Iraq disaster to excessive federal spending under Bush and the GOP Congress.

2) Bush's stance on amnesty for illegals has shattered the GOP - and the conservatives - and left the party in tatters.

3) The 3 main '08 candidates - Romney (too much flip-flopping/Mormonsim seen as a cult), Giuliani (too liberal on social issues/too many marriages/too weird), and McCain (author of amnesty for illegals and of McCain-Feingold/incredibly arrogant and sarcastic to many conservatives; and whose campaign is imploding on a daily basis) - have all failed to capture the imaginations of the GOP primary voters. And the second tier candidates haven't caught on either.

4) Worried over 2008 - and shell-shocked over Bush's demise and the '06 loss of Congress - the GOP wants a 'savior' - another Reagan. Thus they have taken this so-far-undefined vessel called Fred Thompson and filled it with their hopes for the Ideal Candidate/Savior.

5) Thus Fred Thompson's rise in the polls - so far.

6) Thompson is, in fact, a total mediocrity. He is over-rated, lethargic, uninspiring, lugubrious. Plus, he isn't a very good speaker and can't inspire people the way a real leader must. But he will keep doing well as long as he stays out of sight and remains a non-candidate.

7) The minute he announces and the tough scrutiny begins, he will meet the same fate as all the other GOP candidates: his flip-flopping, non-conservative and lobbying credentials will all hurt him.

8) For example, the story came now out Saturday in the NY Times and LA Times: in 1991 he lobbied on behalf of an abortion rights group. Five people confirm this - yet Thomspon denies it all. Why? Because he knows that this will kill him on the Right. It will hurt him right in the heart of the GOP: social conservatives who will see him as another flip-flopper who can't be trusted.

9) Indeed, the voters hate lobbyists; they see lobbyists as part of the problem in Washington, as 'dirty' crooks who 'rig' things in DC. Thompson's 20 years in DC as a lobbyist are going to hurt him big time - and make him seem as an insider when the nation wants an outsider to ride into DC and clean it up.

10) Fred Thompson is Not the Savior the GOP is looking for.

11) As long as he doesn't announce, he will suck up support and political oxygen. But by the fall, his descent is inevitable. The big question then is: once Fred starts to go down, who will be seen as the savior then for the GOP?

Iraq - and the Democratic Race:

12) 72% of the USA wants out of Iraq - and pronto;

13) Of Democratic primary voters, that number is close to a whopping 90%!

14) Everyone these days is just assuming Hillary will be the nominee; I say hold on for a while - and here is why.

15) With the Democratic voters being so antiwar, why is it so inevitable that they would nominate the one candidate - Hillary - who was overly enthusiastic for the war - to prove her hawkishness as a woman - and still refuses to admit she was wrong? In other words, does it make sense for the anti-war party to nominate an un-apologetic supporter and advocate of the war?

16) Am just saying: national polls mean next-to-nada at this stage. More important is Iowa - where Edwards is very strong (big union state) - and thus her near-panic move of bringing her husband out there last week. Team Clinton knows this: if - as the prohibitive front-runner with all this 'she is the inevitable nominee' stuff - she loses in Iowa, she is automatically in Big Trouble. Plus, Obama is doing well in South Carolina, too, so she could lose two key races right off the bat to two different challengers.

17) OK, maybe she survives - maybe not. Either way, 52% of voters say they would never vote for her in November. God, are the Democrats stupid or what? The White House is so winnable next year and all they need is a bland, safe, moderate Democratic male candidate - and they are flirting with either Hillary or Obama? Crazy. (Next most unpopular? Romney with 50.9% who say they'll never vote for him. Clearly the Mormon thing is a big negative.)

18) Let's go back to 1992 - the last race in which the electorate was so sour, surly and ticked off at Washington DC. In February of 1992 - with Bush 41 surviving a Buchanan challenge - and Clinton winning the Democratic primaries - Ross Perot goes on Larry King and begins his 'odd' little campaign. By June he was ahead of both Bush and Clinton! All without spending a dime! Just fueled by free TV appearances!

19) Why? Because Perot had an 'edge' to him that matched the voters' anger. He tapped into the discontent out there. Yeah, he soon flipped his wig, claimed the CIA interrupted his daughter's wedding, dropped out, re-entered the race and still ended up with 19% of the vote! But for a few months he was winning - and had he not been a nut - he showed that under the right circumstances a third candidate could possibly win.

20) That brings us to Bloomberg: he does NOT tap into this anger. He doesn't get it at all - nor does he appear angry or anti-establishment. Yeah, he made a ton of dough and has been an efficient manager of NYC but there is no way the grass roots voters are going to see him as their Sherrif-Riding-Into-Town-To-Clean-up DC. He just doesn't fit. He IS the Establishment. Plus, he is boring on TV and doesn't have that special pizzaz that only Reagan and Bill Clinton have had recently.

21) Yeah, the NYC-DC political talking heads fall all over themselves over this Bloomberg-to-run as an Independent story, but out in America he doesn't turn anyone on at all. Prediction: if he runs in 2008 as a third party guy, he will be lucky to get 4% of the national vote.

22) There could be another Independent Third Candidate - someone we aren't even thinking about today. There is still lots of time for all this to play out - with Iraq deteriorating and Bush refusing to budge - as the backdrop. And who wins the nominations, too, will determine if a Third Guy gets in - a guy who could win.

23) Look for lots of twists and turns - and surprises too. The GOP is a mess and we don't have a clue who wins that nomination. And - with Bush and Cheney sitting in the White House and attending the GOP Convention - these two are gigantic albatrosses for the GOP nominee. If that nominee disagrees with Bush/Cheney on something (to curry favor with independent voters and moderate Democrats) then the remaining GOP base (26% of voters) will be ticked off; if the nominee agrees with the radioactive Bush, then independents go scurrying over to the Democrats or the Third Candidate, if there is one.

24) The media - which is pathetic and dumb and ignorant - ignores this huge factor. Bush's presence - yeah, yeah, I know this Bush "isn't on the ballot" nonsense - is toxic to all GOP candidates next year. And he will be on TV as President every day!!! The GOP can't hide him or run away from him.


Here is the latest sign of the total disintegration of Katie Couric and her version of the once-famed CBS Evening News: she is admitting to “slapping” a staffer over his insertion of the word “sputum” into a June story about the tuberculosis scare.

While Couric and CBS execs try to paper this over with claims that she was “only joking,” it peals away yet another layer of the ongoing journalistic and economic disaster CBS has made with her hiring 15 months ago at a whopping $22 million per year salary.

If we were at Harvard Business School, the Couric-to-CBS News story would be a case study in how to misread your market and your audience.

Some facts:

1) CBS has invested Huge Money in this ‘experiment.’

2) Between her salary, promotion, a new set ($10 million) and lost revenues, this has already cost CBS over $100 million.

3) Under interim anchor Bob Schieffer, The CBS Evening News was indeed in third place - but was making steady gains back after the Dan Rather debacle. Couric has lost those gains and is now the lowest rated third-place anchor in over 20 years.

4) In a NEW YORK MAGAZINE article out today, she claims the problem is the viewers! She explains her dismal ratings this way: “People are unforgiving and resistant to change.”

5) She conveniently ignores the fact that on her opening night last September - after three months of unrelenting CBS promotion - she had over 13 million people watching! ‘Resistant to change’? They tuned in to see this change and right away the next day her ratings began to deteriorate - and have steadily declined weekly ever since.

6) In other words, the viewers were open-minded about this ‘new’ broadcast and new anchor they had been promised. But - alas - it failed to hold their loyalty. Soon viewers drifted off to Charlie Gibson at ABC News - who got none of the publicity or promotion - or salary - that Couric got.

7) So why does Gibson/ABC News work and Couric/CBS News not work? Simple: He is a veteran, legitimate journalist who cut his teeth doing hard news for decades. When he talks about something, you listen. Katie cut her teeth in this new ‘infotainment’ world of the TODAY SHOW where she did fluffy features laced with humor and self-mockery. Yes, she was enormously popular in that venue - and TODAY’s ratings have declined without her.

8) But CBS made a fundamental miscalculation: they thought Katie could bring with her the morning audience of young women (ages 25-45) who advertisers target. But these women nowadays are not home at 6:30 PM to watch TV news. Yes, these women were devoted to Katie at 7 AM - but they won’t/can’t/haven’t altered their TV viewing habits to watch her at 6:30 PM.

9) Along with that fundamental screw-up by CBS, they also didn’t realize something else: she is no good at reading from a TelePrompter. She just doesn’t do it well. Her strength on TV was the ad-libbed back-and-forth with Matt Lauer. But evening news is serious business - and is not conducive to her humorous banter. So, along with her/their inability to bring the morning female audience with her to the evenings, she has systematically alienated the traditional - i.e. older - evening news audience.

10) No wonder she is a distant Third Place these days. And there is no hope of gaining any of her lost audience back; evening news viewers gave her a chance and she failed. Period. Now the only question left is how and when CBS gets rid of her.

11) You can bet your bippy that CBS big shots - the same fools who lured her over in the first place - already are planning on her replacement. Their problem is that CBS News’ bench is thin - and they also don’t know what to do anymore. Do they go back to a “boring, steady, white older guy” in the Schieffer/Gibson mode? Harry Smith perhaps? Or do they try another shocker - an African American man or another woman (Diane Sawyer perhaps)?

12) You also can bet CBS execs’ careers are on the line for this massive blunder - and that plays into who gets rid of her and who takes the fall for this?

13) Do they try to make her co-anchor their-always-failing CBS Morning Show? Do they give her an afternoon talk show or a night-time magazine show for the remaining years of her exorbitant contract?

All of this is soon to play out. It is one of the biggest screw-ups - ever - in TV news. They never understood their audience or the newer audience they were attracting. And they didn’t understand their new anchor either.

This will cost everyone involved - Big Time.

Prediction: she doesn’t make it past this coming Christmas/New year’s Holidays.