Tuesday, October 30, 2007

KRMG's Bonehead: Talker Michael Savage and the End of Civilization as We Know It

We hate to use the words "Michael Savage" and "civilization" in the same sentence, but such is the skewed world of Conservative Talk Radio.

Savage, Talk Radio's No. 3 blabber, can now be heard an hour earlier on Tulsa's KRMG Radio. The AM station broadcasts Savage's rants beginning at 6 p.m.

For those unenlightened innocents out in Radioland, Savage is a windbag of extraordinary hysteria. In the parched desert of Savage's head, anyone to the left of Oliver North is a traitor to America.

Hell, even Col. North is sometimes too left-wing for Savage. North, after all, has read a couple of books, a sure sign of a closet pinko.

Recent evidence: Savage went ballistic Monday on President Bush—that well-known Godless liberal—for awarding Presidential Medals of Freedom to people who don't meet the Savage test of ideological purity.

Some sample victims: Presidential honoree Harper Lee, who apparently had the nerve to write (who knew?) a great novel about Southern racism, To Kill a Mockingbird.

Another target: C-SPAN's president Brian Lamb, "recognized for elevating the public debate," according to an AP report.

But Savage wouldn't know anything about that.

What's the World Coming To? A Woman Will Lead Texas Baptist Convention

We were pleased this week to see that our brothers and sisters in the Baptist General Convention of Texas elected their first female president.

Joy Fenner, a retired missionary, will lead the organization, the largest Baptist group in Texas. According to wire reports, the group includes 5,600 congregations and more than 2.3 million members.

What makes Fenner's election all the more interesting is the lack of women in Baptist pulpits in the Lone Star State. The wire service notes that "fewer than 1 percent of the convention's pastors are female."

Monday, October 29, 2007

Columnist Jones Takes a Stand Against Rep. Duncan's Intolerance Bandwagon

Let's hear it for the straight talk and good sense of Mike Jones, a columnist for the Opinion section of the Tulsa World.

In Sunday's edition, Jones took aim at the shortsightedness and religious bigotry of Rep. Rex Duncan, the Sand Springs Republican who thought it would be a good idea to reject a gift of the Quran last week.

Jones points out that Duncan's refusal started a legislative stampede of sorts, with 24 lawmakers eventually making the same ham-fisted gesture. Duncan's action, Jones points out, is not unusual in the world of politics.

More importantly, Duncan and his fellow legislators have fallen for the sloppiest and most dishonest of post-September 11 cliches. As Jones rightly notes, these folks apparently believe "that everything in the Quran is evil, hence, all Muslims are evil."

This kind of intentional bigotry is popular right-wing radio propaganda, perhaps, but Oklahoma citizens ought to have legislators who can make basic discriminations between actual terrorists and Oklahoma's Muslim citizens, none of whom have been accused of killing anyone.

Jones gets it right, blasting these simpletons for playing to the worst instincts of the voters.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Standing Tall for Religious Diversity: Some Oklahomans Critical of Intolerant Legislators

When State Rep. Rex Duncan, a Sand Springs Republican, rejected the centennial gift of a Quran this week, he made exactly the wrong symbolic and political move.

Rep. Duncan reduced all believers in Islam, one of the world's great religious traditions, to terrorists or terrorist sympatherizers. "Most Oklahomans do not endorse the idea of killing innocent women and children in the name of ideology," Duncan told the Tulsa World.

On this point, we agree with Duncan.

But as the legislator surely knows, the vast majority of world Muslims are not terrorists. And as far as we can tell, the Oklahoma Muslims who presented the copies of the Quran are peace-loving neighbors and good citizens, hardly the sort to endorse the killing of innocent Americans.

A leader in the Tulsa Jewish community has recognized this fact and supports Oklahoma Muslims. "Today, I'm an American Muslim, speaking for our brothers," David Bernstein, of the Jewish Federation, said in Saturday's Tulsa World. "Hateful words inevitably lead to hateful actions," he added.

Exactly so. That's why we reject the narrowmindedness of Rep. Duncan and a group of other state politicians who refused the Quran. This action may placate the religious haters in Sand Springs and elsewhere, but it also plays into stereotype of Oklahomans (and many Americans) as small-minded bigots who can't tell the difference between lightning and a lightning bug (thank you, Mark Twain).

We're proud to side with Oliver Howard, president of the Oklahoma Conference for Community and Justice, who told the newspaper that religious intolerance has no place in Oklahoma. As Howard also noted, "All religious communities have or have had zealots who exploit scared scriptures for their own ends, including violent and human acts."

We're also proud to quote the words of Allison Moore, a member of the Islamic Society of Tulsa. "Our religion teaches us to be peaceful, tolerant, loving and respectful of neighbors and friends, and uphold justice for all people."

It's reprehensible that Rep. Duncan and like-minded legislators can't see beyond the violence of some Islamic extremists and recognize the goodness and humanity of their fellow Oklahomans.

Friday, October 26, 2007

FEMA Improves Image By Interviewing Itself

The latest example of FEMA's incompetence: A California press conference with Vice Adm. Harvey E. Johnson, the deputy administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, in which the questions were all posed by FEMA employees.

And—big surprise!—the questions were all "softballs," and the answers were all upbeat. Real reporters and hard questions are apparently too difficult for FEMA's leaders.

Meanwhile, the California fires continue to burn.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Debt Burden at ORU: $50 Million and Change

The bad news continues at Tulsa's Oral Roberts University. Today's Tulsa World includes this headline on page one:
ORU in debt $52.5 million
The newspaper report does contain some good news for the university. Board of Regents Chairman George Pearson told the World that the board is "doing everything we can to get rid of [the debt]."

Momaday Named to OK Writers Hall of Fame

Oklahoma's writing community is small compared to some states, but the Sooner state's literary quality is quite high. As evidence, we cite the induction this week of N. Scott Momaday into the Oklahoma Writers Hall of Fame.

Born in Lawton in 1934, Momaday came to wide public attention when his 1968 novel, House Made of Dawn, won the Pulitzer Prize. Momaday's writing career has also encompassed poetry, plays, and stories. Other Momaday titles include The Way to Rainy Mountain, a poetic mediation on Momaday's Kiowa upbringing in Oklahoma.

Momaday earned a Ph.D. at Stanford and has taught at UC Berkeley and the University of Arizona. Earlier this year, Oklahoma Gov. Brad Henry appointed Momaday as the state's Centennial Poet Laureate.

Momaday was in Tulsa this week for a Hall of Fame banquet in his honor. Momaday was introduced by Federal Judge Robert Henry.

All praise to Teresa Miller of OSU-Tulsa's Oklahoma Center for Poets and Writers for recognizing the literary contributions of an Oklahoma master, N. Scott Momaday.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

How 'Bout that Hillary? Democrats Top Sooner State Race for Campaign Cash

We know Oklahoma is a very red Republican Red State, but the latest presidential fund-raising figures make the Sooner State look a little more Democratic Blue.

This change of hue is based on the dollars that national Democrats are raising in Oklahoma, led by none other than New York Sen. Hillary Clinton. Clinton, a Democrat, topped all candidates—including Republicans Rudy Giuliani, John McCain, and Mitt Romney—by raising a whopping $434,000 this year in Oklahoma.

Giuliani, the leading Republican fundraiser in Oklahoma, raised more than $329,000 during the same time period.

The other leading Democrats in Oklahoma were John Edwards, former North Carolina senator, who raised $382,000 and Illinois Sen. Barack Obama , who raised $370,000.

Can Hillary carry Oklahoma in 2008? That seems unlikely. But it is interesting that Oklahoma dollars are flowing so heavily to Clinton and other Democrats. If money is the "mother's milk" of politics, then the Democrats would appear to be gaining strength.

Whatever the merits of Rudy, Mitt, Fred and the rest of the Republican field, GOP voters don't seem excited about their candidates.

Inhofe Pushes New River Development Plan

Oklahoma Sen. Jim Inhofe is keeping Arkansas River development alive. In a page one story Sunday, the Tulsa World reported that Inhofe wants to keep the plan alive, even though a sales tax increase to fund the river was defeated earlier this month.

"Quite frankly, I want to get it done," Inhofe told the newspaper.

Inhofe, a former Tulsa mayor, also told the World that some key supporters of the river plan are still interested in developing the river. He declined to name names, but said the response of supporters he had talked to were positive.

Our take: Since Tulsa County voters declined to vote themselves a higher sales tax, a purely private plan is probably the way to go—perhaps the only way. If private sector funds can make the river more attractive and interesting for a variety of citizens and visitors, then we're for it.

Let's hope Sen. Inhofe and his friends in the private sector can make something good happen in the banks of the Arkansas.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Rudy & Fred Bomb at Values Voter Summit

Rudy Giuliani's effort to convert the Religious Right this weekend found few believers. The results of straw poll published today show Rudy attracting less than 2 percent of the Values Voters attendees.

Giuliani finished eighth
in the voting, well behind front-runner Mitt Romney, who racked up 27 percent of the vote.

Former Tennessee Sen. Fred Thompson, the candidate endorsed by Sen. Jim Inhofe and Tulsa Rep. John Sullivan, finished in the middle of the pack. Thompson's 9.8 percent of the straw poll was only enough for a fourth place finish.

Looks like GOP voters will have to keep looking for The Next Ronald Reagan. It's a safe bet they won't be looking for The Next George W. Bush.

UPDATE: We see another story that disputes the results above, noting that former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee was the clear winner of the in-person voting at the meeting. The results above include on-line voting and differ markedly from the in-person counts. Romney, for instance, fell dramatically in the in-person voting, the choice of only 10 percent of the voters.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Uphill Battle of the Day: Rudy Fakes Right

Our favorite political headline of the day (so far), courtesy of The Huffington Post:
Giuliani Woos Christian Right

Brownback Bows Out After Peaking at 3 Percent

Conservative Kansas Sen. Sam Brownback dropped out of the Republican race for president Friday, citing lack of money and weak poll numbers.

The Associated Press report on Brownback's departure noted that the candidate peaked in June with a whopping 3 percent in the polls. New polls show Brownback at only 1 percent among Republican voters.

Brownback's pledge to "rebuild the family and renew the culture" never resonated with enough Republican voters to give Brownback's campaign much traction, the AP reported.

The AP specualted that Brownback's departure will help another GOP conservative, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.

Our take: Huckabee may get a boost, but he appears unlikely to offer a serious challenge either Romney, Giuliani, or the unimpressive Fred Thompson. In short, the GOP still needs a "Reaganesque" candidate to take on the Democrats next year.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

GOP Leaders to Address Values Voters

The conservative Values Voter Summit will convene this weekend as it prepares to mobilize for the upcoming election season.

Press reports indicate that many of the Republican presidential candidates will speak to the group, a core constituency for GOP candidates.

Our bet for the least likely speaker at the meeting: Idaho Sen. Larry Craig, who will be on television tonight attempting to explain away his arrest in an airport men's room.

Viewers seeking the truth are advised to look elsewhere.

ORU's Roberts Taking Leave of Absence

The latest twist in the Saga of ORU comes today from the institution's president, Richard Roberts.

The Tulsa World is reporting that Roberts will take a leave of absence in the wake of a lawsuit filed a few days ago by three former professors. Among other things, the lawsuit alleges financial misconduct by Roberts and his family. Roberts and his wife, Lindsay, have denied the allegations.

The World has more details, as well as an online file of recent ORU stories, which you can find here.

Tilting at Windmills: Sen. Coburn's Anti-Earmark Campaign Irks the Senate

Oklahoma's maverick junior senator, Dr. Tom Coburn, continues to make news with his on-going campaign against Congressional earmarks. The senator and his campaign were the subject of an article in today's edition of USA Today.

Unfortunately for Oklahoma, Sen. Coburn's actions have alienated other lawmakers, who may soon retaliate by pulling the plug on future Sooner state projects.

According to the newspaper, Coburn was successful several years ago in helping publicize and eventually kill funding for two projects known as "Bridges to Nowhere."

Beyond that, Sen. Coburn doesn't seem to be making much progress. In fact, USA Today notes, his opponents include such both Missouri senators, Republican Kit Bond and Democrat Claire McCaskill. Another opponent: Sen. Ted Stevens, the Alaska Republican behind one of the ill-fated bridges Coburn helped kill.

We're all for cutting pork-barrel spending. But if Sen. Coburn is going to really effect any change in the Congress, he's going to need many more friends than he has now.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

And They Look So Much Alike

Lynne Cheney, speaking today on MSNBC, revealed that her husband, Vice President Dick Cheney, and Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, are related—they're eighth cousins.

We know, it sounds far-fetched. But assuming it's true, we submit that Mr. Cheney and Mr. Obama seem quite unrelated on issues we care most about.

Given a choice, we'll cast our lot with the junior senator from the Land of Lincoln.

Sen. Coburn vs. the NRA on Gun Control

It sounds unlikely, but Oklahoma's junior senator, Dr. Tom Coburn, has put himself at odds with the National Rifle Association over a new law designed to keep weapons out of the hands of dangerous people.

Coburn put a hold on the bill, which has garnered support from an unusual coalition of groups, including the NRA and the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. The bill is also being supported by parents and others affected by the Virginia Tech shootings, which occurred six months ago.

According to the Tulsa World, Coburn has concerns about the cost of the bill and its potential to keep guns from certain people. The newspaper also reports that several Virginia Tech survivor and families have written to Coburn about his objections to the gun measure.

It strikes us as more than a little odd that the good doctor would oppose an NRA-supported bill designed to prevent gun injuries and deaths. We know Coburn is a budget hawk, but holding up a bill likely to save lives of American citizens seems foolish in the extreme.

In this case, senator, the NRA has it right.

IRS Warned ORU Over Political Activities

The Internal Revenue Service wrote letters to ORU last year warning the school about potentially inappropriate political activities, the Tulsa World reports today.

In a page one story, reporter Ziva Branstetter confirmed that ORU was notified on May 3, 2006, and again on October 30, 2006. ORU responded to both letters and officials told the newspaper that the institution has complied with IRS rules.

Meanwhile, the lawsuit filed by three former professors against ORU continues to generate news. Lindsay Roberts, wife of ORU President Richard Roberts, denied new allegations in the lawsuit in a statement issued over the weekend. The World's list of its most popular online stories shows that ORU news makes up three of its top five stories.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Tulsa's Michael Wallis Gets National Notice

Tulsa writer Michael Wallis has made the big leagues, critically speaking. Wallis' new book on Western icon on Billy the Kid is the subject of a favorable review in the current issue of The New York Review of Books.

What's more, the review was written by Larry McMurtry, something of a Western icon himself. McMurtry, author of dozens of novels and nonfiction books, regularly reviews books on Western history and biography for The New York Review.

Hollywood Fred: A Winner or a Dud?

Former Tennessee senator and actor Fred Thompson, now a Republican candidate for president, has picked up two Tulsa endorsements. U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe and Rep. John Sullivan, have announced their support for Thompson.

The endorsements were made the same week that former Bush advisor Dan Bartlett made his own assessment of Thompson's candidacy. Bartlett called Thompson "a dud."

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

ORU News Proving Popular with Readers

Oral Roberts University President Richard Roberts was on a national stage Tuesday night, telling CNN's Larry King that he and his family have not misused university money.

Roberts and his wife Lindsay appeared on Larry King Live last night, their first public comment on a lawsuit filed in Tulsa last week alleging misconduct by the Roberts family.

According to the Tulsa World, Roberts told King that he has not been served with the lawsuit and that they are being tried "in the court of public opinion."

"I think [the lawsuit] is about a personal character attack about Lindsay and me," Roberts said.

Perhaps Roberts' CNN appearance will help bolster ORU's image in the media, where negative stories have been the norm for the last week or so.

Public interest in the story remains high. The World is reporting that the top four most popular stories in its online edition are all about Roberts and the ORU lawsuit, topping even the Tulsa County river tax story and an OSU football report.

River Tax Sinks, But Wins in the City

Any vote to raise taxes is bound to face an uphill battle. So it's not a huge surprise that the four-tenths-cent river sales tax increase went down in flames in Tuesday's Tulsa County election.

The "Yes" campaign was very well funded—lots of TV ads and direct mail—but the advertising couldn't make up for anti-tax resistance in much of Tulsa County.

As the Tulsa World's precinct map shows very clearly, the "No" forces prevailed in north Tulsa County, as well as many other outlying areas. In some precincts in north Tulsa County, for example, the "No" vote won by an 8-to-1 margin.

The "Yes" campaign can take some comfort with the fact that 47.5 percent of Tulsa County voters were willing to vote themselves a tax increase. They might also find some good news with the response of voters in the Tulsa city limits, where the "Yes" forces turned out in sizable numbers.

A few examples:

Precinct 47, First Methodist Church 1115. S. Boulder: Yes: 302; No: 82.
Precinct 52: Harvard Avenue Baptist Church, 3235 E. 17th St.: Yes: 571; No: 284
Precinct 61: Arts & Humanities Council, 2210 S. Main St.: Yes: 614; No: 105.
Precinct: 73: John Knox Presbyterian Church, 2929 E. 31st: Yes: 612; No: 137.

Despite such lopsided "Yes" precincts, there weren't enough city voters to outweigh the county's many "No" precincts.

In any case, we have a feeling that river development ideas are not going away. In a year or two, we're betting some plan or other will be in the news again.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Richard Roberts on Larry King Tonight

As we noted yesterday, Oral Roberts University is taking a public relations beating in the national media over allegations of political and financial misconduct by ORU President Richard Roberts and his family.

Tonight, we learn, Roberts will appear on CNN's Larry King Live.

Roberts' appearance will give him a national stage to defend himself and his institution against charges stemming from a lawsuit filed in Tulsa last week. The lawsuit has generated negative reports about Roberts and the school in a number of major media outlets.

By appearing on Larry King's program, Roberts has selected a relatively safe venue for his response. King, after all, is no Mike Wallace. We'd be surprised, in fact, if King really pressed Roberts about the charges.

Despite that, many Tulsa viewers are likely to tune in to tonight's edition of Larry King.

Monday, October 8, 2007

ORU Takes a Hit in National News

A lawsuit filed last week is hurting the image of Tulsa's Oral Roberts University.

A scan of national news sites over the past several days reveals that the ORU story made big (and embarrassing) headlines on the wires and cable news networks. The Associated Press released major story last week and the story was prominently displayed on CNN's homepage today.

Locally, the World has reported that some Tulsans are withholding judgment on the charges against ORU. The World cited a recent ORU graduate who said he wanted to see evidence of wrongdoing before he makes a judgment about the school.

The lawsuit, filed by three former professors, claims that ORU President Richard Roberts required a government professor to make his students help a mayoral candidate in Tulsa. It also includes charges that the Roberts family used school money for personal use. Roberts issued a statement Friday denying the allegations.

Whatever the merits of the lawsuit, the national publicity is bad news (literally!) for ORU.

Tulsa World Hires Plante as New Cartoonist

The Tulsa World has hired Bruce Plante as its new editorial cartoonist. Plante replaces Doug Marlette, the award-winning cartoonist and writer who was killed in a traffic accident in July.

Plante, 53, comes to the World from the Chattanooga Times Free Press in Tennessee. Plante has also worked for the Arkansas Democrat in Little Rock, the Potomac News in Virginia, and the Fayetteville Times in North Carolina.

Plante's first World cartoon appeared in Sunday's edition. Plante's website can be found by clicking here.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Sen. Brogdon Inspires Yawns on KOTV

In their effort to inform voters on the upcoming Arkansas River vote, KOTV Channel 6 ran extended interviews Friday with representatives of the both sides.

On the "No" side, Channel 6 interviewed State Sen. Randy Brogdon, an anti-tax Republican from Owasso. Brogdon trotted out all the usual objections, though his presentation was uninspired at best.

Before KOTV puts Sen. Brogdon on the air again, they may want to consult the "Ten Best & Ten Worst" legislators issue of The Oklahoma Observer. Back in June, the Observer's Frosty Troy nailed Sen. Brogdon, one of his "worst" picks.

Troy writes:
[Brogdon's] chronic "no" votes make him so predictable that other senators simply yawn when he speaks.
We yawned too, along with several thousand other viewers.

If Sen. Brogdon wants to bring voters over to his side, we suggest a double espresso from one of Tulsa's fine coffee shops.

The Wit & Wisdom of Queen Ann

The conservative pundit Ann Coulter, speaking this week to the New York Observer:
If we took away women’s right to vote, we’d never have to worry about another Democrat president. It’s kind of a pipe dream, it’s a personal fantasy of mine, but I don’t think it’s going to happen. And it is a good way of making the point that women are voting so stupidly, at least single women.
Who needs that stinkin' Nineteenth Amendment?

Arnett Strikes Again: Pushing the River Vote by Trashing Michael DelGiorno

Tulsa blogger David Arnett is out with a new posting pushing the Arkansas River development plan. Oddly, Arnett begins the post with a swipe at former Tulsa radio host Michael DelGiorno, who now works in Nashville.

Tulsa blog readers will recall that Arnett, publisher of the Tulsa Today blog, recently issued a verbal blast at blogger Michael Bates of Batesline. Bates has been an outspoken opponent of the river tax. Arnett challenged Bates to a debate over the issue, a challenge that has not been answered.

Vigorous debate is a good thing in our book, so we're happy that Arnett, Bates and others are on the job. Still, we can't quite figure out how DelGiorno fits into the river tax debate.

You can read Arnett's column for yourself by clicking here. Check out Bates' anti-tax postings here.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Thompson Underwhelms Iowa Voters

Our nomination for Campaign Headline of the Day, this one from The New York Times:
Thompson Fails to Spark Excitement in Iowa
As evidence, the Times quoted Republican voters who just didn't find much to get charged up about in Thompson's campaign stops. The Times reporter summed up Thompson's Iowa appearance as follows:
Voters who came out to see him as he traveled through Iowa — even while expressing admiration for his views and intense interest in his candidacy — said they were struck by how little energy or passion he appeared to bring into a room.
Suddenly, Alan Keyes is looking pretty good.

Fair Packs 'Em in Despite Bell's Departure

Various Tulsa bloggers and letter writers—still mad because Bell's Amusement Park was kicked out of the fairgrounds—have promised never to attend the Tulsa State Fair again.

It's a free country, of course, so we don't begrudge them their right to spend their time and money as they see fit.

But fair attendance is up so far this year. In any case, suspect that good weather, the entertainment mix, and other such factors play a major role in fair attendance. Bell's or no Bell's, some folks are going to turn out for the fair.

If it stays cool and dry, we might even drop by this year. After all, those baby animals are always so cuddly and adorable.

KOTV Channel 6 is reporting that even though attendance is up, fair revenues are down. If we heard correctly, fair-goers are spending less on the rides, which may very well be the result of Bell's departure. In addition, the well-publicized accidents on the rides this week can't help either.

MSNBC's Chris Matthews Gets Drubbed by John Stewart on 'The Daily Show'

Chris Matthews, the irrepressible host of Hardball on MSNBC, appeared on The Daily Show last night to promote his new book, Life's a Campaign.

The Daily Show's John Stewart was not impressed. Stewart, who said he read the book, repeatedly challenged Matthews on the notion that life can be reduced to a campaign. To Stewart, it seemed, campaigning is not a great metaphor for common sense and human decency.

We can't speak to Life's a Campaign because we haven't read it. But we did read a previous Matthews book, American: Beyond Our Grandest Notions. It's an upbeat book about the joys of America and American life, but it left us wanting more. As a contemplation of America's greatness, Matthews offered only a thin veneer of history and culture, with no room for more powerful ideas about the complexities and contradictions of American life.

Maybe Chris ought to stick to TV talk shows. His chops as a writer are wearing thin.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Boren Supports Child Health Insurance Program

AltTulsa is pleased to note the better-late-than-never support of Oklahoma Congressman Dan Boren on the children's health insurance program now before the U.S. House.

Boren, who voted against the program last week, explained to the Tulsa World's Jim Myers that his change of heart was the result of some soul searching.

"I didn't want to be the one to stop the program from going forward," Boren told the World.

Although the legislation expanding the program has passed the Senate with bipartisan support, its prospects in the House are less certain. President Bush has promised to veto the legislation, claiming that it is a step toward socialized medicine.

From what we've seen and heard, the President is wrong. Indeed, several conservative Republican senators have backed the bill and called on the President to support it.

But if he did, he would be committing "compassionate conservatism," a term that seems to have disappeared completely from the White House lexicon.

We can't imagine why.

Happy 4th Birthday, Circle Cinema

That's right, folks, Tulsa's non-profit movie house is four years old this month.

As regular readers of this site will know, we are big fans of the Circle Cinema and we've spent many pleasant hours in the dark there with films of all stripes.

As part of its birthday celebration, the Circle is hosting a documentary festival this week. The line-up looks good and you can check it out for yourself at their website here.