South-Side Styles

April 2, 2012

First Lady Michelle Obama has made a point of bringing Chicago’s South Side to Washington DC. Last week, it was south-side values, in which the First Lady expressed her determination to bring those somewhat questionable morals to the White House.

This week it is apparently south-side styles she is bringing into view. As Katie Pavlich of Townhall said:

“Cleavage and skin tight metallic jeans……completely appropriate outfit for the First Lady of the United States, right?”

And after seeing that, I can only say, please, no mas! No mas!

I actually liked the First Lady when she looked and acted like a First Lady. Sadly, we haven’t seen much of that recently.


South Side Values

March 21, 2012

You may already have heard what the First Lady  had to say when speaking with David Letterman (David Letterman?) the other night about raising kids in the White House:

“For us, it’s the values. The thing that we try to do is make sure — the residence is on the second and the third floor of the White House. And what we want to have happen is when they get off that elevator and walk in to our residence that it feels like the south side of Chicago, the same values, the same rules, the same sense of responsibility…” 

She may want to re-think the import of those “south side values,” given what’s going on back home these days:

Chicago’s police superintendent says the city is re-tooling its anti-gang strategy, following a particularly violent weekend during which several people, including a 6-year-old girl, were killed.”

“The majority of shootings in the city between Friday evening and early Monday morning happened on the city’s South Side, but areas from West Rogers Park to Humboldt Park also saw gun violence. The youngest victim was a 6-year-old girl, who was likely the innocent victim of gang violence in the Little Village neighborhood.”

Based on a quick search of “chicago south side violence”, I really don’t want South Side values being instilled in the White House. Do you?

2012: Anybody But Obama


H/T: Daily Scoreboard

Michelle Obama: The New Marie Antoinette?

August 9, 2010

It’s been quite a week for FLOTUS (First Lady Of The United States) Michelle Obama and the youngest of the first couple’s daughters, Sasha. But more on that in a moment.

First, it’s good to be back. The two-week hiatus was a good opportunity to veg out and try to ignore the reality of our country’s abysmal economy, the unrelenting unemployment, the runaway train-ride towards being overwhelmed by illegal aliens while the federal government sues anyone who wants to enforce existing laws designed to combat the problem.  Ah yes, how nice it’s been to ignore it all. Kind of like, you know… being President.

AP Photo/Sergio Torres

As for the first lady, I’m so happy that Michelle had a chance to get away from the drudgery of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. And Spain is such a great place to spread the wealth around, isn’t it?

Uh, perhaps for them but not, apparently, for us minions:

In July, Michelle Obama showed us all how concerned she was with the desperation of businesses in the Gulf states who are losing hundreds of millions of tourism dollars due to the BP Oil Spill. In a warm show of community unity, she traveled to the Florida Panhandle, hit hard by the oil spill and boldly stated that families who are “looking for things to do with their kids this summer… this is a wonderful place to visit.” And she sounded so sincere, didn’t she?

Then she went back to Washington to pack for a week-end trip in Maine. You may remember that was the trip where the family dog got his own chartered plane to join the family.

Last week, in true Marie Antoinette fashion, she jetted off on the Vice-President’s 757 Jumbo Jet with youngest daughter Sasha, a few dozen of her closest  friends, a complete staff of secret service  and attendants and spent the last 5 days in a luxury vacation area on the Mediterranean Sea in southern Spain…

But she’s back home now and all is well. If she hurries, she’s got just enough time to do a new PSA (Public Service Announcement) encouraging us minions to vacation in the Gulf of Mexico before she has to jump aboard Air Force One with the entire family for yet another vacation, this one on Martha’s Vinyard. I wonder if the dog will have his own jetski.

Of course, she’s entitled to a vacation, and all first families have taken them. My point is simply this:  Adding up hotel suites, private cottages by the sea, meals and transportation while there probably added roughly several million dollars to the coffers of Spain. It could have been the coffers of the businesses in the Gulf of Mexico.  And it would have prevented the inevitable comparison to Marie Antoinette.

But that would be an unfair comparison… While Michelle wants to put OUR kids on a strict diet, at least Marie Antoinette is purported to have said “Let ’em eat cake.”

Pass the twinkies…

Gerry Ashley

Applause for the First Lady

November 25, 2009

We here at Grand Rants are frequently critical of the President’s policies, and for good reason. We have also had occasion to pick on the First Lady as well. But when either one of them does things right, we like to point out those instances as well.

Hubba hubba!Last night, Michelle Obama appeared every inch a First Lady the entire country could applaud. No dowdy red-and-black disaster dress, no unflattering dear-Lord-what-the-heck-is-that-outfit? moment.

She was drop-dead gorgous. Elegant. Stately. And just beautiful. Not only that, she actually appeared to be having a good time. She also looked as though she felt at ease with herself. That geeky fellow beside her looks like a sophomore nerd in his first tux who can’t believe the homecoming queen is his date.

For all I know the state dinner itself may have been a howling disaster, or a smashing success. The Indian Prime Minister and his wife may have stormed off in a huff after the first course, or they all might have stayed up dancing until dawn. Doesn’t matter for this moment. Doesn’t matter at all.

For the first time in my life, I was proud of our First Lady.


Michelle Obama: Creating More Jobs Than Barack?

October 30, 2009

Michelle Obama may actually be creating more jobs than her husband, the President. Unfortunately, all of the jobs she has created have apparently been to surround herself with aides to assist her with her tedious job of finally being proud of America.  Let’s take a look at this inventive job creator, shall we?


Photo credit: Canada Free Press

“In my own life, in my own small way, I have tried to give back to this country that has given me so much. See, that’s why I left a job at a big law firm for a career in public service. “     Michelle Obama

Back in July, Dr. Paul L. Williams wrote in an article for that Michelle Obama, First Lady of The United States (FLOTUS) had 22 “attendants”  (i.e., paid staff to do everything for her from correspondence to purchasing $600 tennis shoes).

However, in an update, it appears that she has increased that staff to 26. I’m not sure, but that might just beat the number of new jobs created by POTUS Barack Obama.

One thing is certain: Michelle Obama has more “attendants” than any first lady in history. Here’s a breakdown on the majority of them and what they are costing us taxpayers:

  1. $172,2000 – Sher, Susan (Chief Of Staff)
  2. $140,000 – Frye, Jocelyn C. (Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of Policy And Projects For The First Lady)
  3. $113,000 – Rogers, Desiree G. (Special Assistant to the President and White House Social Secretary)
  4. $102,000 – Johnston, Camille Y. (Special Assistant to the President and Director of Communications for the First Lady)
  5. $102,000 – Winter, Melissa E. (Special Assistant to the President and Deputy Chief Of Staff to the First Lady)
  6. $90,000 – Medina, David S. (Deputy Chief Of Staff to the First Lady)
  7. $84,000 – Lelyveld, Catherine M. (Director and Press Secretary to the First Lady)
  8. $75,000 – Starkey, Frances M. (Director of Scheduling and Advance for the First Lady)
  9. $70,000 – Sanders, Trooper (Deputy Director of Policy and Projects for the First Lady)
  10. $65,000 – Burnough, Erinn J. (Deputy Director and Deputy Social Secretary)
  11. $65,000 – Reinstein, Joseph B. (Deputy Director and Deputy Social Secretary)
  12. $62,000 – Goodman, Jennifer R. (Deputy Director of Scheduling and Events Coordinator For The First Lady)
  13. $60,000 – Fitts, Alan O. (Deputy Director of Advance and Trip Director for the First Lady)
  14. $60,000 – Lewis, Dana M. (Special Assistant and Personal Aide to the First Lady)
  15. $52,500 – Mustaphi, Semonti M. (Associate Director and Deputy Press Secretary To The First Lady)
  16. $50,000 – Jarvis, Kristen E. (Special Assistant for Scheduling and Traveling Aide To The First Lady)
  17. $45,000 – Lechtenberg, Tyler A. (Associate Director of Correspondence For The First Lady)
  18. $45,000 – Tubman, Samantha (Deputy Associate Director, Social Office)
  19. $40,000 – Boswell, Joseph J. (Executive Assistant to the Chief Of Staff to the First Lady)
  20. $36,000 – Armbruster, Sally M. (Staff Assistant to the Social Secretary)
  21. $36,000 – Bookey, Natalie (Staff Assistant)
  22. $36,000 – Jackson, Deilia A. (Deputy Associate Director of Correspondence for the First Lady)

Mmm Mmm Mmm…

Oh, and just a reminder: She doesn’t really have any official duties.

Yep, all hail “the most fiscally responsible administration” as, I believe, the President promised during his campaign.

I wonder how many of Michelle’s assistants have radical backgrounds? We know, based on the choice of her wardrobe, there’s at least one.

Gerry Ashley

H/T: Canada Free Press

Friday Round-up: 01-16-09

January 15, 2009

Good News to Brighten Your Day: The Bleat has gone bloggy. Yes, everyone’s first (or second) read of the morning, James Lileks’ Bleat, has migrated to blog format. This is so good, as it means multiple posts per day, plus COMMENTS! I hope it also means he’ll have more time for the Screedblog (hint, hint), but I’ll take whatever I can get.

Edit: Forgot to add, things like this are why Lileks is my second read of the day, and should be your first:

Driving my daughter back from Karate… I expressed the desire to LEAVE FOR SOMEPLACE LESS LETHAL, and of course Natalie doesn’t want to go anywhere else. I regretted bringing it up, since I don’t want her to think her life could be uprooted, and I said I was just talking. “It’ll be over, Dad,” she said. “It will be warm again. As warm as Arizona.”

To which I thought: and then it will be cold after that. Repeat until dead, and the interment is delayed because the backhoe snapped a chisel trying to dig your grave in the frozen earth. But she’s right; it will be warm. Ruining the onset of spring because you know winter follows is like weeping when you open a bottle of fine, fine Scotch because it will be empty some day. I’ve learned my lesson from the wisdom of a child. This year I will buy two springs and store one in the back of the cabinet. 

How do you top that? You don’t. Unless you’re James Lileks.


Farewell to two stalwarts: both Ricardo Montalban and Patrick McGoohan died this week. I remember Patrick McGoohan from The Prisoner series, which, as a kid I could never quite fathom, but I loved the Introduction — so dramatic!

I never knew that Ricardo Montalban was a dancer–I remember him from Star Trek, Fantasy Island, and various automobile commercials. However, anyone who can keep up with Cyd Charisse qualifies as a dancer in my book!

Rest in peace, gentlemen.


Tortured Logic: Regarding the report that we declined to prosecute the 20th hijacker in the 9/11 attacks because he was tortured while imprisoned at Gitmo, well, I am just speechless. I am not generally one to let loose with flights of creative swearing and f-bombs, but this really tempts me. Fortunately for us all, Rachel Lucas has already vented, and has done a far better job than I ever could.


Downsized: Sadly, the nebulous job that Michelle Obama was being paid $300,000 annually to do (or not do, as she’s been off the job for almost a year now) has hit the chopping block. Given that the University of Chicago Hospital says the job will be absorbed by another executive, the Chicago Daily Observer wonders why it was an actual job in the first place. I think most folks know it was just another example of Pay-for-Play. After all, that’s the Chicago Way.


Do Over! It seems likely that the only way Minnesotans will get a fair count out of their Senate contest is to start from scratch. Given the bizarre decisions handed down by the state court and various state and local officials; given the fact that in at least 25 MN precints there were more votes counted than there were voter signatures; given the agreement to allow the campaigns themselves to determine which previously-rejected absentee ballots to count and which to discard–it’s enough to make me ask if we’re really talking about Minnesota, and not, say Illinois or Louisiana.


Seasonal Dis-affection: I’ll leave you with a link to the Anchoress, who is looking forward to Spring (as am I!) and poring over the gardening catalogs, which start blooming in mailboxes right about now.


Have a wonderful weekend!