Blogs > Frye on the News

Keeping his eye on the news and offering commentaries and insights on what is happening in Oakland County, around the world, on the tube and in the news.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Another singer falls

Davy Jones, the TV star and pop singer, has fallen.

He joins Whitney Houston and Amy Winehouse in the great gig in the sky, dying of a heart attack, as has reported.

His path to fame was different as he joined a TV show that was designed to kinda emulate the Beatles. But the voice was real and the pop songs had millions of fans over the decades.

The Monkees might have been fabricated for TV but they found and maintained a place in the hearts of millions.

And "Daydream Believer" is a much better song to have thrown at you for a few days, so much better than" I will always love you." But is he an icon, as we said in our headline. I'm guessing, maybe. Winehouse wasn't around long enough to be icon, but Houston was.

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Good for the Mitt

Good for Mitt Romney that he won Michigan.

Jenny the former gov (twice elected, though, haters) says it doesn't count because he barely won.

Foul, I say. Wrong, Madame Current TV hostess.

Even if Mitt Romney had lost by 3 or 4 points, I still think he would be able to claim some sort of victory, especially with all the southeastern Michigan delegates. But he won outright even with the Democratic mischief, so sorely supported by Santorum, of Dems wanting to vote for a candidate that would prevent stability on the GOP side.

Such mischief is fair because it's allowed, but you have to count it when analyzing the votes and the outcome.

Also, this outcome helps Rick Snyder, Michigan's new somewhat popular nerdy governor, on the national stage. So far, it seems the only thing Snyder has going within the national arena is not something he says or does but only his record of an improving Michigan economy. He may be understated, but he brought Michigan to his endorsed candidate and he may be a player if the news continues to improve about Michigan.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

And the Oscar goes to....

"The Artist."

That's my prediction for this Sunday's Academy Awards, the best sporting event between the Super Bowl and March Madness.

I haven't seen the movie, but it has the buzz of a big-time Oscar winner. It celebrates Hollywood history all while presenting its story in a way no one else has tried in recent decades. It's new, by using the old style of silent film.

Now how many it wins, I'm not sure, but it'll take the big ones, such as Best Picture and Best Director. It may even take best actor, though the acting awards seem to go in different directions. I think The Help, Moneyball, and War Horse get shut out, unless an acting nod and/or the adapted screenplay. goes to The Help. (And here, I wonder if Moneyball pulls some kind of super

See the nominees here.

Also, I don't think this awards show dominates the ratings like the post-Whitney Grammy's did. Ratings will be up a bit, as times are a bit better and people like to be entertained with star power. But the only real super star power here is George Clooney, who may be giving a speech, unless The Artist sweeps through that category, too.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Sad to see them go

I can't believe some of these deaths, as two sports stars from my youth have fallen.

First, the San Francisco 49ers Freddie Solomon died this week, battling cancer. He was one of the stars on the early 1980s Bill Walsh teams, making way for the phenom rookie Jerry Rice with grace and class. He still contributed, but the teammates worked together to win. Jerry Rice praised Solomon for teaching him much, as Solomon's final season was Rice's rookie campaign.

Then comes news that Gary Carter, the popular Montreal Expos catcher who went on to become more popular in New York as a world champion Met, had also died, again of cancer. In 1986, the Mets shocked the Red Sox and kept their losing streak alive with an improbable comeback in the World Series. Carter seemed like a classy player and good teammate, and I always liked that Carter went into the Hall of Fame as an Expo, where he had dominated his position for so long. It's good he got to compete and win a world championship in his later career but I'm glad he didn't forget his roots with that not-so-storied franchise.

Sure, they had a terrible stadium, but they had a cool name and even cooler uniforms.

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Santorum to win Michigan?

Yes, I believe so.

I'm not buying the 'I'm a Michigan man' line from Romney and I think many people aren't buying it either.

I understand why so many accuse him of being a man for all people, meaning he believes what you believe if you're in line waiting to vote. His ads ooze of that.

If he's such a Michigan man, why is only here during campaign stops?

Here's an interesting piece that wonders if playing the favorite son (prodigal son?) could hurt Romney.

And I'm sure many are mad at his continued insistence that the government should not have helped the auto industry. He may be right in some technical sense, but it's the symbolism of support or nonsupport that will sway many, and when it comes to basic statements, Mitt's have not been kind to Michigan's auto industry.

But where's Newt, that's the big question now? We're missing a lot of fun, considering I want to hear more about this moon colony.

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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Comment on Muslim piece

We had a nice article this week about MUSLIM SECRETS, a look at Sharia law.

Here is my favorite comment on the piece:

Heh wrote: "It wouldn't matter if Muslims actually wanted Sharia law in America. They don't have the numbers to make it happen. We have plenty of politicians who want to impose their own version of Biblical law on people, and I'm more worried about them."

The piece is written by our staffer and video expert Aftab Borka.

In fact, four or five stories will be written, all looking at different topics. Coming up in the next weeks, you can read about Muslim women as well as the divide between Shia and Sunni Muslims. Today's story, on Sharia law, was a top-five most read article on our site.

Read it only at as our sister papers The Macomb Daily and Daily Tribuen would not publish the piece. (Wasn't Royal Oak a more progressive area?)

Ad strength

Super Bowl ads again?

Hell yes, and it's what's on my mind.

Might not be fair, but here's how I compare this year to last. Placing your money onto a big show with a high stakes ad is a gamble that can blow up in your face.

Last year: One tough nerd.

This year: Won't spend it.

Strong nickname = future governor.

Weak nickname = subtle racist.

Nat'l Enquirer leads the way

Kudos to National Enquirer, which this week features a prominent front page photo of a disheveled Whitney Houston with a headline about her collapsing.

This edition was published before Houston's demise on Saturday.

They did not predict her death, but them being on top of her final public performance shows that they were on the story. Makes it seem that their new cover, about Whitney's Final Minutes, might have the dirt we all want to know.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Dogs in the news

Wowzer, lots of dog stories today.

Here's a rundown of pooch-filled headlines, in order of how I think they will do with readership:

1. Neglected dog in need of help after losing a leg.

2. Man convicted of shooting dog. He was jailed even though he likely would get probation. I bet he was jailed for lying on the stand, testifying that he was aiming at a chipmunk at night when he struck the dog. Judge Michael Warren has a special dislike for lying in court, as I recall.

3. Dogs at work help make things more comfortable (except for people who don't like dogs.)

4. And this asshole stabbed a dog, yet he likely won't get jail.

5. Then there was a protest against GOP presidential candidate Willard Romney outside of the Westminster dog show.

6. And finally, this TV anchor needed 70 stitches after an on-air blooper.

Let's hope tomorrow we don't have this kind of series on cats or perverts. OK, perverts will drive pageviews and readership.

Happy Valentine's Day

Lots of Valentines Day stories today, including several about how much people love one another.

There's another one about a man who will take to the radio to notify his wife that there marriage is over.

I prefer the stories about chocolate and, being St. V's Day, I'll promote our favorite chocolate place, downtown Rochester's Sander's Chocolate - a great place to pick up gifts for bus drivers, teachers, aides, and staff.

As for the radio report from New Zealand, it turns out it was a woman who plans to dump her hubby, after having met someone online. "It's over," she said. "Why not do it for free?" She won the divorce with the on-air dumping.

Funny, when the pair of DJs told her it's her "last chance to pull out," she said, no, "It is your last chance to pull out."

When they called, the woman's partner, Amber, announced the reversal. It was a joke on the DJs. "I was disgusted, I can't believe you were going to let someone do this," the wife said.

"Suckers," the partner, Amber said. "Down with the Rock."

Monday, February 13, 2012

Angry Dad shoots it up

A man who airs his family's dirty laundry, well, really calls out his daughter for being a teenage brat, finishes his on-video rant by shooting up a laptop, presumably her laptop.

He strikes a blow for parents who are overwhelmed by overdemanding teenagers, supposedly.

To me, it sounds phony. It sounds staged. It reeks of seeking viral attention.

But let's suppose it's real. I'd argue, and I'd do so as a father of three girls, that the parents seem incredibly terrible.

The father reads a letter from the girl, who complains about having to do everything, even making pots of coffee for her parents. What kind of parents make someone else make them a pot of coffee. I think kids can help clean up the mess they make, but I don't view the children in the house as my housegirls, there to clean, fetch and make stuff for me.

Lazy parents breeding lazy kids. But of course, this is made for viral web fakeness. Give me the Saints fan who shoots up his big screen TV. Now that's a man.



Yes, she's still dead, but I wonder how the news outlets feel about her passing.

It's big news for them, especially for "The Today Show," TMZ, and all the other entertainment shows. This will be a major week of redundancy and overkill, but they feast on this stuff.

On the other hand, do they lose out on another 10 to 15 years of ups and downs by one of the world's darling divas?

Short-term gain for a long-term loss?

Friday, February 10, 2012

GOP: To spend or not to spend

Pete Hoekstra vows to not spend it. Sounds like he'll shut the govt down and stop all spending. OK, that's fine, except I'll miss the roads. (But living in Michigan, I could get used to unkept roadways.)

But fellow GOPer Candice Miller vows to keep the A-10s at her county's Selfridge Air Force base, saying the cuts by the federal government (in trying to reduce the debt) are "unfounded, unfair and economically indefensible."

Hmmmm. Wonder what Hoekstra would say to her?

And it makes me wonder how she votes when it comes to the national debt ceiling. I'm guess she sticks with her party. Spending is bad...unless it is in her district.

That flushing sound I hear?

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Church under fire

Boy, lately it seems churches are under fire.

First, they got some good news from the U.S. Supreme Court, which ruled unanimously that churches can fire employees for religious reasons. That means the government doesn't get to see its rules interfere with church practices, and hence beliefs.

However, just as quickly comes word that federal health regulations will force churches to provide employees with health care that includes contraceptives and abortions, even churches that oppose such practices. I wonder how this rule would last considering the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling; however, it'll be a moot point as it appears that the president's people aren't going to want this to linger during the election season. Something may be worked out.

Now, locally, comes a story about a Baptist preacher who took a confession of a teen he suspected of sexually abusing a child. The child had already reported the incident to family and the church official, who then questioned the accused teen. The preacher then was ready to testify about the confession. The Court of Appeals will hear arguments about whether the confession can be given in testimony.

In one way, I understand the preacher wanted to help justice and wanted to know if the allegation was true. I'd want a confession and I would certainly take it to police. What I wonder is if the confession was given to a church leader who was acting as an authoritative figure and as an agent for the police. Should the teen have been advised of his rights to not self incriminate?

Tough issue for the church, but what's clear is the state is not trying to force the confession into court against the will of the preacher. Rather, the preacher wants to do what's right, but does that trample on the rights of the teen, who may be a pervert.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Giants earned it

More power to the NFL and the New York Giants, who were 7-7 after falling to the hapless D.C. Redskins in week 15.

Yet they squeaked into the playoffs, won a couple of road games (after spanking the Falcons at home). Hey they even won with high drama, stripping the ball from a 49er punt return in OVERTIME, everyone's favorite time in football.

The Lions, Saints, and Packers passing attacks quickly disappeared from the playoffs, leaving only the high powered offensive Pats, who also were stymied by the Giants.

Let's hear it for the game. Let's hear it for the league.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Quote within a quote

Presidential hopeful Mitt Romney appeared to step into it on the morning after his big win in Florida by saying he didn't care about the very poor, noting they have a safety net.

He noted if the safety net needed fixing, he'd look at that. And he said the line within the context of saying he didn't care about the very rich, saying they're doing OK. He cares about the middle class, the rest of us.

Well, it may not have been the best way to state that, offering up a soundbite that stings, being among the super rich himself.

But the fact is that most of do not really care about the very poor, and most of think the safety nets are fine. In fact, many want to do away with safety nets, noting the cost to the rest of us. I'm speaking about Dem and Republicans, as if they really cared about the very poor, more would be done to improve the safety nets and expand opportunities for them. But that fight is not being fought by most people; it's a small minority looking out for the very poor.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

It's not a murder (yet)

The slaying of Jane Bashara is a tragic event.

However, it has not yet reached the level of murder. And as important as Fox2, WDIV Channel 4, WXYZ Channel 7, and The Detroit News think they are, they cannot make it a murder.

They can editorialize that it 'should' be a murder, say if the prosecutor refuse a police request for a warrant. They can decry the violence that should never occur but does so often strike our homes, neighborhoods, communities.

But it's not yet murder, even if someone confesses to being an accomplice (which is in itself very very strange.)

Murder is a legal term and a homicide, strangulation, shooting, slaying, beating death, or killing all turn into murder when, first, a prosecutor files a charge, and, second, when a jury or judge agrees with a verdict of murder.