Saturday, July 30, 2011

Big Ben: Steelers Need Another Convict Weapon

Here's a tip (what a concept, eh, Ben?) for anyone discussing the prospective return of Plaxico Burress (who spent a few years in Pittsburgh before spending a couple of years in jail) to the Steelers:

Avoid comments such as "You can always add a weapon."

Infytune: Happiness Is A Warm Gun, John Lennon
Infytune: You've Got To Hide Your Love Away, The Beatles
Infytune: Rocky Raccoon, Jack Johnson

Pennsylvania's Prosecutorial Circus Never Disappoints If You're Looking For Clowns

Some uncommon insight is on display over at Rick's Place. The more one looks -- although sometimes it seems Signor Ferrari is the only one looking -- the more troubling Tom Corbett's performance as a prosecutor becomes.

Political ambition and prosecutorial power are an undesirable combination, whether in the hands of a Zappala or a Corbett.

The real clowns are costumed when the mixture includes a lack of experience -- as with Stephen A. Zappala Jr. (who became district attorney, despite a lack of qualifications, because Allegheny County's judges were willing to soil their robes by annointing a politically connected hack in 1997) or Washington County's Steven M. Toprani (who is talking about running for state attorney general at about the time he might be starting to have a chance at junior partner at a first-rate law firm -- if, that is, someone with Toprani's credentials could have gotten a job at a major law firm).

Infytune: Somebody's Baby, Jackson Browne
Infytune: Lawyers In Love, Jackson Browne
Infytune: The Pretender, Jackson Browne

Friday, July 29, 2011

If Big Ben Brings Burress Back, Can We Finally Stop Hearing About 'The Steeler Way'?

The toilet-sex-with-an-underage-drinker playboy recruiting the gunslinging deadbeat convict -- the new Steelers Way.

If Dan Rooney gets a priest to bless Plax upon the return to Pittsburgh, we will expect most Steelers fans to grant the necessary indulgence.

Infytune: Money, Pink Floyd
Infytune: Wish You Were Here, Pink Floyd
Infytune: Another Brick In The Wall, Pink Floyd

The Tea Partiers Were Right! Communists Have Infiltrated Our Entire Economic System

Exquisitely appropriate: The morning after Speaker John Boehner was unable to conduct even a show-horse debt ceiling vote because he failed to assemble enough sensible Republican members of Congress (and because he remains unwilling to compromise with Democrats), the opening bell of the New York Stock Exchange was sounded by representatives of a bizarre communal system.

Infytune: Somewhere Over The Rainbow, Judy Garland
Infytune: If I Only Had A Brain, Ray Bolger

A Civic Circumstance As Bitter (And As Self-Inflicted) As A Strong Cup Of Earl Grey

Sane Republicans -- the business community, in particular -- must be shuddering. They welcomed a couple of strains of virulence, religious kooks and Tea Party ravers, into their political coalition for electoral advantage. Today, they are horrified by the emerging evidence that the Tea Partiers did not merely talk crazy.

These are self-inflicted wounds, for our nation and for the Republican Party. The debt ceiling has been routine legislative housekeeping -- the legislature authorizes expenditures, and therefore must arrange corresponding credit if needed -- for decades. Republicans not only were aware of the deficits that require a debt ceiling increase but indeed pushed many principal drivers of the deficit (discretionary wars, tax cuts, prescription drug benefits).

Credit and equity markets are shuddering, too. If you have been wondering how the business community, the evangelical crusaders and the Tea Party ravers could form a coherent coalition, the Chamber of Commerce suddenly shares your concern.

We are fortunate to live in an economically strong, relatively free nation. We are foolish, however, to test the strength of our communities, whether by the sudden onset of ideological inanity in Washington or by the slow corrosion of ineptitude along Grant Street.

Infytune: Blowin' In The Wind, Peter, Paul and Mary
Infytune: The Times They Are A-Changin', The Byrds
Infytune: Like A Rolling Stone, Bob Dylan

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Tea Partying Republican Congresscritters Have Found Enemy, And It Is Non-Tea GOP

The tea-drunk ideologues of the Republican Party have added Republicans to the targeting list of Americans who must be crushed by the mindless weight of counterproductive conservative dogma.

Some Republicans reportedly find the Republicans' tactics objectionable.

Infytune: Back Stabbers, The O'Jays
Infytune: I Can't Help Myself, The Four Tops

Monday, July 25, 2011

Thanks For The Tips -- And A Request For A Few More

We have received so many recent tips that it is taking some time to review and investigate them. So why not cultivate a few more?

Can anyone illuminate the tendency of eyes from two organizations -- Boenning & Scattergood and Schiffrin & Barroway -- to visit Infinonymous?

Infytune: Private Investigations, Dire Straits
Infytune: Private Eyes, Hall and Oates

The Not-Quite-The-Whole-Story Life Of Joanna Doven

If there is a great newspaper, or perhaps an ostensibly exciting new newsgathering operation, in the vicinity, it would be great -- and exciting, and novel -- to have an informed public with respect to a few questions concerning the proposed refinancing of InsolvenCity debt:
  • Who stands to profit?

  • Who stands to profit (indirectly)?

  • How much profit is involved?

  • Was the amount of profit, and/or the identity of those who will profit, established by competition?
Of course, cream-skimming is not the sole issue that could merit examination in this context.

Infytune: Money For Nothing, Dire Straits (When MTV Was About Music version)

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Congress Continues Debate Over Whether Or Not Nation Should Be Economically Ruined

That's not InfiCleverness -- that's an actual headline from a leading newspaper. (Just as Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert have become leading journalists in a so-sad-it-makes-us-laugh world, The Onion is now One Of America's Great Newspapers America's Finest News Source.)

Congress, corroded by extremists generated and protected by exquisitely gerrymandered districts, has become dysfunctional, to the point of enacting conflicting statutes. One set of statutes requires expenditures; another statute forbids adequate funding for those expenditures.

The likelihood that the average American understands the relevant issues, history or logistics resembles the chance that Ashley Harlan Roethlisberger will not soon hear her new husband end a quarrel with "Well, what the hell did you expect?", but this ignorance has not prevented a strident public debate -- focused on dogma rather than solution.

Military expenditures have been ignored by that debate, confirming the disassociation from substance. The United States confronts several threats, but they are almost entirely self-inflicted. We blundered into Iraq and drifted in Afghanistan, stressing our military and our economy senselessly. Our struggling economy is taunted by rating agencies not because foreign creditors are holding a gun to our head but instead because we are playing Russian roulette with credit markets. Our most important foreign policy problems derive from not from menacing foreign powers but rather from our decades-long failure to address wasteful dependence on imported petroleum.

We will know someone is serious about solving our nation's problems when military spending (and policy -- how many American soldiers must be in Germany or Japan to provide adequate defense for the United States?) becomes part of the discussion.

Until then, politicians will look to the fringes of declining political parties for inspiration, while reasonable Americans look to Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert and The Onion for news and insight.

Infytune: Bad Moon Rising, Creedence Clearwater Revival
Infytune: Who'll Stop The Rain, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Private Cops Barring Prying Eyes While Big Ben Does His Business With A Young Lady? This Is Beginning To Sound Familiar

Privately dispatch police officers providing security for Ben Roethlisberger to keep away prying eyes while Big Ben does his business with a young lady . . . to the P-G tweeters, it resembles a general "crime scene," but to us it sounds more like the bathroom of the Capital City nightclub (left) in Milledgeville, Georgia.

Does anyone know whether Anthony Barravecchio and Edward Joyner served as the groom's honorary bodyguards this afternoon . . . or will accompanying the couple to watch the door for the wedding night?

Infytune: I Knew The Bride (When She Used To Rock And Roll), Rockpile
Infytune: Crawling From The Wreckage, Rockpile

Amy Winehouse, Infytuner, Found Dead At Age 27

Amy Winehouse, occasional supplier of Infytunes, has died in London, at 27, apparent casualty of a poorly chosen lifestyle.

Infytune: You Know I'm No Good, Amy Winehouse
Infytune: Rehab, Amy Winehouse
Infytune: Before They Make Me Run, Keith Richards

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Reverend Cote Blows Call On Roethlisberger

Gullibility is an essential qualification for anyone whose job description includes teaching that fairy tales are true certain fairy tales are true (while all others are wickedly and damnably false) -- especially for those who preach at right-wing churches that flip through the Bible and find "gospel of affluence" -- but Rev. Bruce Cote of Christ Church at Grove Farm reaches beyond the normal calling in today's Tribune-Review.

Drunken groupies just returned from the dentist have been known to drool over star athletes less than Rev. Cote does in fawning over Roethlisberger. Rev. Cote obviously does not know Big Ben as well as stiffed waitresses throughout the North Hills, half-comatose college girls in bodyguarded restrooms, and all of Ben's bitches known him.

Tribber Joanna Klimovich Harrop acts as an able fluffer, demonstrating remarkable dexterity in avoiding any mention of the vivid evidence that Ben's recent, publicized piety might readily be ascribed to convenience, business, and handlers' advice.

Infytune: Cathedral, Crosby, Stills, and Nash

Monday, July 18, 2011

Long May PittGirl Run (And Type)

We wish PittGirl well as she recovers., and hope anyone with a hopeful thought to spare sends it in her direction.

Infytune: Long May You Run, Neil Young

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Justin Sane, Pat Thetic And Anti-Flag Join Warped Tour For Single Show (Pittsburgh)

Justin Sane (left), Pat Thetic (right), and Pittsburgh-based Anti-Flag (stars of the Pittsburgh G20 Soundtrack) will join this season's Warped Tour for one show -- at that shed at Star Lake, this Friday, July 22.

A ticket is 28 bucks. The associated fees are $16.50. This suggests Pitt has started a ticketing business.

Infytune: This Is The End, Anti-Flag

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Big Ben Rolls Right When Playing For Jesus

Christ Church at Grove Farm -- a breakaway right-wing church serving Sewickley residents for whom the local Episcopal church did not serve enough political and cultural wingnuttery -- will provide the setting for Ben Roethlisberger's wedding to Ashley Harlan.

Why Christ Church at Grove Farm? Because Ben (right, apparently confused about which jersey goes with which team) -- when he isn't playing for Jesus or skating on nailing half-conscious underage drinkers in rest rooms -- worships there.

Faithfully, no doubt.

Infytune: Jesus Of Suburbia, Green Day

Friday, July 15, 2011

Ashley Harlan's Tastes Run From High End For Wedding Gowns To Low End For Grooms

The bride-to-be of Steelers quarterback (and never-once-charged-with-banging-an-underage-drunk-girl-atop-a-toilet-with-his-private-police-force-watching-the-door partier) Ben Roethlisberger -- a gentleman who insists on the best for 'all his bitches' (probably because he plays for sweet baby Jesus) -- has selected a Lhuillier wedding gown, an event dutifully noted by the local newsgatherers.

What many yinzers regard as a coup for the designer is instead a paltry endorsement, against the background of Ashley Harlan's taste in grooms (artist's depiction of wedding night, left).

Infytune: Smokin' In The Boys Room, Brownsville Station

Cong. Mike Kelly Pays His Own Way -- With His Wife's Money And His Father's Business

Mike Kelly's substandard early performance as a Butler-and-north's new member of congress has had us wondering how Cong. Kelly was able to achieve his position as a wealthy car dealer, but then we noticed his stirring declaration that "success is a testament to the blood, sweat, and tears that went into decades of hard work and sacrifice by God-fearing people who believed that if you worked hard and kept the faith, anything could happen." Mr. Kelly describes himself as "someone who has had to pay his own way his whole life."

When one sets aside faith and discovers facts, however, it turns out Cong. Kelly became a wealthy car dealer with a pull-your-bootstraps, pay-your-own-way political philosophy the old-fashioned ways: He inherited the business and married the money.

Nice "job," Congressman.

Infytune: The Real Me, The Who
Infytune: My Wife, The Who

Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Continuing (And, Apparently, Predictably) Grandiose Misadventures Of Secretary Of Health Eli Avila

Our original observation concerning the haughty behavior of Dr. Eli N. Avila, the swashbuckling secretary of health appointed by Gov. Tom Corbett, generated a couple of curious comments and e-mails. The consistent theme: Dr. Avila is a strange man unsuited for public office.

Some correspondents claimed to be acquaintances from Long Island, or former classmates, or relatives from Puerto Rico. Some mentioned religious (Pentecostal) zealotry and political extremism. Others described unattractive or bizarre personal conduct. One 'guaranteed' that Dr. Avila would continue to generate headlines with grandiose behavior.

We did not consider the relevant contents of the Infin-box worth mentioning until we encountered a compilation of Dr. Avila's continuing misadventures -- which apparently have been, at least among some who claim to know him, as predictable as they are weird.

UPDATE: Whomever uses the Googlator to search for "Dr. Eli N. Avila" every morning from a Commonwealth of Pennsylvania computer is wasting taxpayer money and should ask himself a question: Wouldn't that money be better wasted on erection of a giant officious seal featuring Dr. Avila's face atop the Department of Health headquarters in Harrisburg?

Infytune: Crazy On You, Heart

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Hines Ward Dances Way Behind Bars (Were Those Ridiculous Costumes More Fitting Than We Knew?)

Which of these points concerning the recent arrest of Hines Ward for drunken driving is more disturbing:
  • Hines Ward, a man able to afford a limousine ride company, was irresponsible enough to risk others' lives (and his own)?

  • Hines Ward, after failing a field sobriety test and an informal breath test, lacked the courage to try a real breath test?

  • Hines Ward knowingly drives a vehicle whose license plate reads "OOOHWEE"?

  • Hines Ward, ostensible tough guy, drinks Coronas?

Infytune: Tiny Dancer, Dave Grohl

This Is Why A Town Needs Two Newspapers

State Ready To Intervene In Highmark Dispute With UPMC
-- Post-Gazette headline, July 12, 2011, 7:02 p.m.

State Not Ready To Intervene In Highmark-UPMC Dispute
-- Tribune-Review headline, July 12, 2011, 7:02 p.m.

Infytune: Let's Call The Whole Thing Off, Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Betty Ford, A Lady Who Was First In A Number Of Important Ways For America

The death of former First Lady Betty Ford evokes a somewhat forgotten period of America's evolution -- the 1970s, when an effective and outspoken woman in public life was still an emerging concept, our nation experienced and recovered from a criminal presidency, and the Republican Party was sane.

While President Gerald Ford provided a calming hand to an America scarred by our misadventure in Vietnam and the Nixon presidency, Betty Ford pulled back a repressed society's curtains to promote discussion and improvement of outdated social conventions. She openly and sensibly discussed substance abuse, abortion, treatment of women, guns, drug warriors, and mastectomy, often from a reservoir of personal experience.

Betty Ford, a fighter through alcoholism, breast cancer, and women's battle for equality, was a leader in America's effort to improve. Our progress is neither uniform nor complete -- the pro-choice wife of a Republican presidential candidate could advocate positions based on reason rather than superstition 40 years ago, yet probably could not do so today -- but it is unmistakable over time, thanks to our Betty Fords.

Infytune: She's A Lady, Tom Jones

No Winners In Sight As Tuxedoes And Titties Tangle Along InsolvenCity's Ninth Street

This seems strange in a context involving people whose livelihood derives from displayed nudity, but it is difficult to find an attractive participant in the escalating legal battle among a strip club, InsolvenCity's cultural elite, and Pittsburgh Public Schools administrators along Ninth Street.

The strip club (originally the Edison Hotel, then Club Elite, currently Blush) proposes to expand beyond the dimensions it has occupied for decades.

Downtown's tuxedoed arbiters of taste object (perhaps because Blush survives without public money while the hospitality venues arranged by the Cultural Trust -- like those funded by the Urban Redevelopment Authority, Sports and Exhibition Authority, and other public agencies -- routinely fail despite massive subsidies).

The school district also objects, because a high school is situated within a block of the strip club (although not necessarily because the district regrets its dopey decision to place a high school for stage-struck girls within a block of a hiring office for strippers).

The strip club strives to dissipate any "we were here first" sympathy by selecting as its public spokesman the mouthpiece of choice among our community's nuisance bars and sketchy liquor license applicants (and, of course, the former partner of InsolvenCity's current solicitor).

The only sensible approach to this fight might be to root for each side to beat the hell out of the other.

Infytune: Patricia The Stripper, Chris De Burgh

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Casey Anthony Acquitted (Which Means Sentenced To Life Of Knowing She Is Too Despicable To Live)

The jury's verdict -- acquittal on murder charges after more than a month of trial in which Casey Anthony (right, mourning her daughter) was emphatically demonstrated to be a "lying, no-good slut" (those are her lawyer's words, by the way) who partied while concealing the grotesque circumstances of her daughter's death -- means one thing, for sure:

"Party at Casey's place!"

Infytune: Your Mama's On Crack Rock, The Dogs

Beware Republicans Professing Freedom And Small Government (Especially Those Bearing Cameras)

A pair of Republican elected officials, apparently overlooking their ostensible advocacy of freedom and limited government, are ostentatiously celebrating the expenditure of substantial taxpayer funds on a license plate surveillance system for police cars from several municipalities.

Tim Murphy is one of the members of Congress playing a foolish game of chicken with the federal debt ceiling (when he is not securing funding for an expansion of government surveillance whose primary asserted justification is, of course, doobie-hunting). Steven Toprani is the junior varsity district attorney in Washington County who misunderstands the roles and relationships of prosecutors and judges in our criminal justice system.

We continue to believe that, if unblinking crime-detecting cameras are to be installed in public places, the obvious first choices for mountings are (1) the hoods of taxpayer-funded vehicles and (2) the offices of elected officials.

Infytune: Long Train Running, The Doobie Brothers
Infytune: Piece Of My Heart, Big Brother and the Holding Company
Infytune: For What It's Worth, Buffalo Springfield

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Sunday Reading: Independence Day Edition

Pittsburgh Past: Before McClatchy, the Nuttings and Murphy shipwrecked the Pirates, the Bucs were a treasure -- free, on the radio -- for young people of all ages.

Prohibition Present: Home of the free . . . or of the drug warriors?

Mississippi (Same As Ever): Free at last . . . no thanks to American law enforcement.

America's Founding: The Founding Fathers and freedom . . . (for flakes).

Infytune: Sandy (Fourth of July, Asbury Park), Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band (Passaic 1978 version)

Infytune: Born In The USA, Bruce Springsteen

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Ron "Byrd" Foster, Drummer Of The Decade, Has Died

Ron "Byrd" Foster, a fixture at The Decade during that club's noctural reign, has died, at 61. Foster (second from left) joined the Igniters in his teens, then played with The Silencers, and the Iron City Houserockers before moving to Florida.

It seems strange that The Decade lacks a Wikipedia entry.

Infytune: Peter Gunn/Remote Control/Too Illegal, The Silencers