Would Jesus Forgive Target
For Compromising His Visa?

By Jim Berlin 

I have not yet forgiven Target for allowing my credit card information to be stolen just before Christmas – but there are two reasons why I should:

(1) As a follower of The Man who used one of his final breaths to forgive those who crucified Him, it would be the Christian thing to do. I would submit, however, that we will never know how Jesus might have reacted if sheer Roman laziness and cost-cutting had led to His Visa card being compromised.

Would He have forgiven that, too? I think not.

(2) Target sells Planters salted peanuts significantly cheaper than any other retailer. Indeed, so cheaply they had become a daily staple in my diet rather than an occasional luxury.

I like salted peanuts; nay, salted peanuts are my heroin and crack cocaine in a can. In fact, if I arrived at the pearly gates and St. Peter were to say, “Oh, by the way, we don’t serve salted peanuts here,” – the following conversation would ensue:

“Excuse me, Brother Peter…did you just say there are no salted peanuts in heaven?”

“It’s a health issue, son. But our endless salad bar and eternal sushi-on-a-stick are to die for. And of course, we have Hamburger Friday.”

“But no peanuts!?”

“If you want peanuts, son, I understand they’re all-you-can-eat in hell. But, ha-ha, who would go to hell just for salted peanuts?”

“Where’s the damned elevator?”

“The elevators here only go down, son.”

“I repeat…Where’s the damned elevator?”

I cannot bring myself to forgive Target. Not yet. But I’m getting weaker…

Actual Journalism May Result
From Christie Bridge Scandal

By Jim Berlin

America will be offered a rare glimpse of a truly endangered species – investigative journalists – as the national media works to directly link New Jersey Republican Chris Christie to the George Washington Bridge scandal.

There are two reasons for this reemergence of serious reporting. First, Gov. Christie is perceived as a threat to the liberals’ planned coronation of Hillary Clinton as the next president.

To the media, this is a far more pressing issue than what really happened in Benghazi or the IRS war on the Tea Party – neither of which they bothered to explore.

Second, and possibly the prime motivator, the politically-motivated shutdown of the bridge – which links New Jersey to New York City – involves New York City.

The folks who live and work there, including the staffs of all major TV networks, believe NYC is the royal and spiritual seat of the United States. All the rest of us – barely washed and totally unsophisticated – are a rapt audience of rubes hanging on every hiccup the city emits.

That’s why the election of New York mayors, and their every move after taking office, receive nearly as much publicity as U.S. presidents.

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The names of Rudy Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg are as well known in American households as Barack Obama and George W. Bush.

The reason? The media thinks we really, really care.

Here’s some potentially heartbreaking news for New Yorkers: We Americans who don’t reside in your metropolis, and that accounts for over 97 percent of the nation’s population, consider ourselves blessed that we live somewhere else. We are, in fact, only mildly interested in what goes on in New York City.

And that includes traffic jams on the George Washington Bridge.

In the U.S., More Than Anywhere, We Care About Somebody’s Dog

By Jim Berlin

It was high noon in a major intersection in a large Arizona city – four lanes in all directions – but most cars had slowed to a nervous crawl because of the living obstruction in the road: A half-grown Boxer pup, eyes as wide as silver dollars, pacing and darting in a circle of confusion as driver-after-driver sought to avoid him.

Because there is a leash-law in place, every loose dog is somebody’s dog, an adventurous escapee or unwilling wanderer temporarily separated from hearth and home. And in America at least, no sane person wants to hurt somebody’s dog.

In America, somebody’s dog is everybody’s dog, a loved and pampered species that has wagged its way into the hearts of us all.

But it wasn’t looking good for the pup. Drivers unaware of the drama were crowding the creepers and pushing hard into the intersection. It was just a matter of time.

My police uniform shirt has hung unworn in a closet for 15 years, but you never get it off your back. Hell, I didn’t even have a whistle, but I started to get out of my car anyway. I would just go out there, stop traffic somehow, scoop him up, make everything right.

Then I saw a kid on the far corner, early 20s, down on one knee and calling the dog as loud as he could. The pup saw him, too, and all his fear and confusion fell away. He raced from the street and into the boy’s arms and horns

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honked everywhere in celebration.

I pulled next to the kid as he put the dog back in the cab of his truck– and some truck it was. A full-sized 3’ x 5’ American flag was mounted on the back. The kid was obviously a vet, an over-the-top patriot.

“He rides with me every day, every day!” he shouted. “And for some reason he just jumped out the window!”

Then off he went, the flag snapping to full attention in the wind as he headed home with his pup.

In America, more than anywhere else on Earth, we care about somebody’s dog.

Why Stupid People Thrive
and Survive in America

By Jim Berlin

The reason America seems to have more than its fair allotment of stupid people is because the prime element in the natural selection process – survival of the fittest – has been interfered with.

The process was alive and well in our nation’s infancy. If a man wasn’t bright enough to cut down some trees and fashion them into a log cabin, his frozen body was discovered in the melting snows of Spring.

Not only was he removed from the gene pool, the nation was also spared the chips off the old block he would have produced. It was a cruel process but it worked.

Unfortunately, as the nation was gradually tamed, civility and compassion broke out like a measles plague. We began looking out for stupid people, and the stupid thanked us by multiplying like crazy. (The great irony is that it’s hundreds of times easier to make babies than to build a log cabin.)

The continuing refinement and evolution of protecting America’s stupid is classically depicted in a current Nissan TV commercial. It shows a woman driving across town at breakneck speeds, and at one point the car ascends a ramp, goes airborne, and lands on

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top of a moving train.

It is here, lest the stupid race to their cars and search for a train, that they are protected:

Fantasy, do not attempt,” says the warning on the screen. “Cars can’t jump on trains.”

This statement of fact by Nissan may not deter every stupid person with access to a car and a train, but it will discourage most. Those that try the stunt anyway will claim they were confused by the very first word in the warning: Fantasy.

It is one syllable beyond their zone of understanding.


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