This one is irresistible.
Dennis (the Worm) Rodman goes to North Korea, makes friends with short, not-so-benevolent despot Kim Jong Un, who has threatened the United States with “miserable destruction,” and then packs his gym bag and heads to St. Peter’s Square.
Once there, he starts campaigning for Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana to be elected the first black pope. Otherwise, he said, he’d be content to meet whomever landed the job; as it turned out, that would be Pope Francis, former Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires. Rodman’s people are still waiting for the new pope’s people to call them back.
Apparently snubbed by the spiritual leader of more than a billion Catholics, Rodman’s diplomatic pendulum is swinging back to the North Korean tyrant, whose nation is best known for its atom bomb, famine and concentration camps. Rodman tells the media that he’s planning a return trip to North Korea in August to “vacation” with Kim, whom he has called a “friend for life,” a “good guy” and a “great leader.”
You can’t make this stuff up.
Now there’s an idea: Kevin Gaughan, Western New York’s regent of regionalism, has proposed a way to ensure that the effects of the “sequester” are fairly shared throughout government. The spending cuts, which are to amount to $1.6 trillion over 10 years, should include a contribution from members of Congress, requiring them to take a 14-day furlough. “Basic fairness suggests that politicians should make equal sacrifice to that being made by people affected by Congress’ inability to do its job,” he wrote in an email from his bully pulpit at www.LetPeopleDecide.org.
We think that’s a fine idea. In fact, members of Congress should willingly offer to accept the same 20 percent pay cuts that are about to affect 280 civilian employees at the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station, and to keep volunteering for them until Congress comes to its senses and strikes a balanced deal that attacks the federal budget deficit. We assume that Reps. Brian Higgins and Chris Collins will get right on this.
A lot has been said and written about the combination hotel-hockey complex that is about to begin rising on downtown Buffalo’s Webster Block. “Hockey Heaven,” across the street from and attached to the First Niagara Center, will include two NHL-sized hockey rinks and is expected to be a downtown magnet. What hasn’t been said, at least not enough, is that this is happening because Terry Pegula bought the team from Thomas Golisano.
That’s not to diminish Golisano’s role in saving the team, which was in crisis as its former owners, the Rigas family, faced prison over activities at their other plaything, Adelphia Communications. Golisano rescued the Sabres, a fact for which fans should be eternally grateful. But his heart was in Rochester, where his generosity has been notable. He never would have undertaken the project that Pegula is driving, one that will help to remake downtown Buffalo in just a few years. So, thank you, Terry Pegula.
Now, about that team …