Vinny Forlano: He won’t talk. Stone is a good kid. Stand-up guy, just like his old man. That’s the way I see it.

Vincent Borelli: I agree. He’s solid. A fuckin’ Marine.

Americo Capelli: He’s okay. He always was. Remo, what do you think?

Remo Gaggi: Look… why take a chance? At least, that’s the way I feel about it.

Casino 1995

At the American Thinker Thomas Lifson uses the words:    the painful and tedious explication of the obvious when referring to a study featured in the Chicago Sun Times.

If you and another person get arrested together in Chicago, you’re both part of a loose network of people with a high risk of getting shot in the future, Yale University researchers say in a newly published study.

Only 6 percent of the people in Chicago between 2006 and 2012 were listed on arrest reports as co-offenders in crimes, the study says. But those people became the victims of 70 percent of the nonfatal shootings in the city over the same period.

And while there is a racial component in the numbers to wit:

These statistics demonstrate the wisdom of the old adage, “Lie down with dogs, wake up with fleas.” They also show that it is not per se that is related to the higher incidence of violence in some black communities…

For every 100,000 people, an average of one white person, 28 Hispanics and 113 blacks became victims of nonfatal shootings every year in Chicago over the six-year study period.

… but rather the existence of networks of people who engage in violence and reinforce each other in patters of violent behavior.

it isn’t so much that a person is of a particular race, but if you are hanging around with crooks and thugs when the heat is on they are going to look out for #1.

That’s what the numbers showed, your odds of getting shot in Chicago are 30 times higher if you were dealing with thugs than if you were just minding your own business.

But for those of you who simply can’t handle this concept because of the racial breakdown here is an example you’ll be able to understand without feeling guilty because it involves Sicilians.  We don’t mind because we don’t particularly care what some stranger thinks of us.

This is why my folks never got involved with these guys, even when people were threatening them.  Sooner or later you pay for it, big time.

 

You’ve heard about my love of the card game, bridge. Now I’ll share a bit about what it is.

 

To play, you need two pairs of people. Each pair is considered a “partnership” – that is, a team unto themselves. A deck of cards is shuffled, and each player gets 13 cards.

 

The goal of the game is for your partnership to take as many tricks as you can each time the cards are dealt. First, however, you go through a process called “bidding.” What is bidding?

 

Every partnership has a language where they communicate with bids descriptions of their cards. You language is called your “system” – an agreement as to what each of the bids means. Some people have very simple systems. Some have systems where they need literally hundreds of pages to document all their agreements and meanings!

 

Once the bidding is completed, one pair or the other “wins” the contract. That is, they have promised to take a certain number of tricks on that hand. That pair tries to achieve that goal – or do even better. The other side (now known as “the defense”) does their best to take as many tricks as they can – and perhaps foil the offensive side from reaching their goal.

 

This occurs hand after hand, until the game completes.

 

There are a number of forms of the game. You can play with four people anywhere you like; this is generally referred to as “contract bridge.” You can play what is called “duplicate bridge”. In this form, you have multiple people who play the same hands throughout a session. This form of bridge takes away much more of the “luck” as to whether you get good or bad cards. Since everyone has the same cards, you compare what each pair does to the other, rather than only one result. You also can have team games. In this format, your pair joins with another pair to form a team. Your team plays another team – and, let the best team win!

 

Bridge is not an easy game to learn – yet it is not extremely difficult. That being said, it is absolutely fascinating, and to learn to play at a high level can take time and effort. Best of all, however, it is so deep and complex, you can spend a lifetime learning and being intrigued.

 

I know that I have!

 

Peg Kaplan

President Bennett:  “You’re not going to go public. You’ve got a chip in the big game now. And one day, when you’re in trouble, you’ll come to me and I’ll cash that chip for you.

Clear and Present Danger 1994

As you know by now Brian Williams from NBC news is now taking some time off:

The “NBC Nightly News” anchor, who is under scrutiny after recanting a story he has told for years about being on a helicopter in Iraq that was struck by a rocket-propelled grenade, said last Saturday he was taking himself off the air.

In a memo to staff, Mr. Williams said the decision was his own. “In the midst of a career spent covering and consuming news, it has become painfully apparent to me that I am presently too much a part of the news, due to my actions,” he wrote. Mr. Williams, who is also managing editor of “NBC Nightly News,” said Lester Holt, the weekend anchor for NBC’s newscast, would take his place.

and he is also ducking David Letterman:

NBC’s Brian Williams cancelled a planned Thursday night appearance on CBS’s ‘Late Show with David Letterman’, POLITICO’s Mike Allen and CNN’s Brian Stelter reported on Sunday.

The cancellation comes after Williams admitted this week that he was never aboard a helicopter that was struck by rocket-propelled grenade fire and forced down in Iraq in 2003, as he had previously claimed.

Mark Steyn, who spent some time in RPG ally in Iraq commented saying

I was certainly alert on the road, and I saw the occasional burnt out tank and other vehicles, but I’ve never been in any danger over the ensuing dozen years of “misremembering” an RPG hitting my car – because the difference between being in a motor vehicle or flying machine that’s not hit by an RPG and the same contraption that is hit by an RPG is so vast I don’t see how one wanders innocently across that line. I was around RPGs, I was in the vicinity of RPGs, I was in the Greater RPG Area zip code …but I didn’t see one and I didn’t get hit by one. And I’ve no idea what that would feel like.

But while a lot of words have been said there are two bits that I find intriguing on the subject, the first words come from Maureen Dowd:

THIS was a bomb that had been ticking for a while.

NBC executives were warned a year ago that Brian Williams was constantly inflating his biography. They were flummoxed over why the leading network anchor felt that he needed Hemingwayesque, bullets-whizzing-by flourishes to puff himself up, sometimes to the point where it was a joke in the news division.

This is important, because Dowd suggest that this was well-known (did she know it as well?) and yet none of these “journalists” (or perhaps “Journo-lists” found it worth commenting on).

The second comes from Ed Driscoll who without meaning to hits on the meat and potatoes of the matter.

Can Williams return? Depends on how many cases of Vienna sausages he has to barter with, I suppose…

Ed is making a joke about another Brian Williams story but it’s an interesting point if you think about it.

We’ve seen plenty of spin from the MSM over the years, and a willingness to manipulate and twist things to suit their narrative.  Given the sausage making that been going on there for years,  what makes anyone thing that people willing to do such a thing for political reasons would not be willing to do so for themselves.

To put it bluntly I very much doubt Brian Williams is the only person in the MSM elite with an issue with truth.

Furthermore Williams has been in the business for a long time, he has likely seen a lot and heard a lot, if there are others in this same situation I’d bet real money he knows about it.

If that’s true Williams is in an interesting spot:

  • Does he keep silent figuring that after a short hiatus he will come back or be given an acceptable position elsewhere?
  • Does he keep silent in fear of jeopardizing his daughters position in the entertainment industry?
  • OR does he decide that to take out any chits he might have and make it clear if he goes down, he doesn’t go alone.

That frankly is the only question left and I find it a very interesting one.  Does Williams play hardball or no, but even this question presupposes that the network doesn’t have something even more damning about Williams that they can reveal.

No matter how it ends, a lot of conservatives are going to have a lot of fun watching this all twist in the wind.