Roger Simon: Silicon Valley Bank Failure a Precursor to Left Wing Push to Eliminate Cash and Move to Digital Currency

Roger Simon: Silicon Valley Bank Failure a Precursor to Left Wing Push to Eliminate Cash and Move to Digital Currency

Live from Music Row Thursday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed all-star panelist Roger Simon in studio to comment on the Silicon Valley Bank crisis and how it could invoke nationwide digital currency.

Leahy: In studio right now, our very good friend, all-star panelist, and my former boss at PJTV. That was 14 years ago.

Simon: Is that what it is? I can’t count that far back.

Leahy: Fourteen years ago when we first met. Also an Academy Award-nominated screenwriter. In addition to being a novelist and depending on the day, the most-read columnist at The Epoch Times, Mr. Roger Simon. Good morning, Roger.

Simon: Good morning to you!

Leahy: It is a delight, as always, to have you here in studio. You have a very interesting column just published at The Epoch Times about where this current banking crisis, the failure of Silicon Valley Bank, is going to lead us. And it’s not a very good place.

Simon: No. And it’s not just the Silicon Valley Bank, as everybody knows. It could be your bank and Credit Suisse and various other things.  And something called Signature, which is about as woke as you could get. The problem I’m talking about is, you remember how this guy, Ram Emanuel said, never miss an opportunity for a crisis to do something new and dangerous.

Well, there’s a crisis going on, as we all know, and the thing that I think a lot of them have in mind is moving us all off of the banks that we may love or hate to digital currency. That means no cash and lots of conveniences, everything happens very quickly, and it means every single penny you spend even a candy bar at a 711 is recorded and known by the government.

Leahy: I cannot think of anything worse than to get rid of cash.

Simon: As I say, it’s communism beyond the wildest dreams of Karl Marx.

Leahy: Yikes.

Simon: Really, if you think about it, I mean, everything is under their control now. Then they can shut anything off if they don’t like a single thing you do. Boom. It’s gone in a second. Is your carbon footprint is too high? You can’t get gas today. That’s an example.

Leahy: Yes. They can control everything if we go to digital currency. How does that happen in a worst case scenario?

Simon: The famous phrase is, I think it’s from, how did you go bankrupt? It’s in Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises. Slowly, but then all of a sudden, or something like that. That’s how it would happen, I believe. I think we’d wake up one morning, and it would be like that.

Biden or whoever runs Biden is doing everything by Executive Fiat. They might find a way to do that. They might declare another crisis. It’s COVID time and I guess because there’s a new pandemic it simplifies everything if all the currency is digital, and we can keep an eye on who is getting them the new shots or not.

There are lots of ways this could happen. And I think that everybody listening should be on what we used to call the French kevee, or something like that should really pay attention. Because this could happen in a lightning second.

Leahy: What a wonderful way to start the program.

Simon: On the other hand, spring will eventually come.

Leahy: Everybody’s drinking their coffee thinking, you know, Roger might be right here. Oh my goodness! But let’s try to see, well, okay. We see that as a possibility. What can be done proactively to stop that possibility?

Simon: Putting it out in the public and that you hate the idea. That’s really it.

Leahy: I totally hate the idea.

Simon: So do I. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have written the column.

Leahy: Thank you. I get my Captain Obvious award for that one.

Simon: So do I. I think that’s all we can do at the moment. I think it’s essentially evil, and you have to just keep your eye on evil because it’s everywhere in our culture right now.

Leahy: And growing.

Simon: Speaking of the spring, it just popped into my head that one of the things that have been canceled is one of my favorite songs. Zippity Do Dah.

Leahy: That’s been canceled?

Simon: Song of the South. That wonderful moment. You know, I remember as a kid when I watched it, I was just so happy.

Leahy: Why was it canceled?

Simon: Oh, because it’s a black guy singing it, and it hearkens back to slavery.

Leahy: But there’s nothing in the lyrics.

Simon: No. Nothing in it.

Leahy: Oh my goodness.

Simon: No. It’s just cancel culture.

Leahy: Okay, we’re gonna come back with some more positive opportunities for the future.

Listen to today’s show highlights, including this interview:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to The Tennessee Star Reporwith Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
















The Epoch Times Columnist, Author Roger Simon on the Literary Process and Narrative of Upcoming New Book, American Refugee

The Epoch Times Columnist, Author Roger Simon on the Literary Process and Narrative of Upcoming New Book, American Refugee

Live from Music Row Thursday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed all-star panelist Roger Simon in studio to discuss the narrative of his new book American Refugee and the literary process.

Leahy: In studio, all-star panelist Roger Simon, author, screenwriter, all-around, good guy, and columnist with The Epoch Times is with us.

Roger, I want to extend our conversation about your upcoming book because it’s interesting how you take kind of topical issues and make them compelling. This is going to be your 14th book, right?

Simon: Yes. It’s a third, nonfiction. Most of the other 11 were novels in that you have a slight disadvantage. The disadvantage is you better have talent. But the advantage is you’ve got a plot, hopefully, and the plot keeps the reader involved.

Leahy: One of your novels was a mystery [series] about a detective that turned into a movie with Richard Dreyfus.

Simon: Eight mysteries on Moses Wine. Theoretically, people are looking to find out who done it and all that. However, now I carry that over a little bit into my nonfiction writing.

Leahy: This is interesting to me because this topic of your book, American Refugee, which you just sent the manuscript off to your publisher and they liked it, which is great.

Simon: Which is a relief.

Leahy: It’s a relief. Once you send the manuscript to the publisher, a real legitimate publisher, Encounter Books. Very well known. How long does it take from the time you send it off to the time the book is actually released?

Simon: It’s varying now, and part of that is publishing is now part of the supply chain issue. It’s not as easy to get to the printer and all of that. So I’m not exactly sure. I’m sure my book will be out sometime this summer which is something I had to be cognizant of winter in writing. When you’re writing about something like this.

I’m writing about the North American refugees, meaning the folks who moved from the blue to the red states who are all around you’re here in Tennessee right now, some of it you could write in two pages, meaning the statistics, and then which vary probably in one year to the next, but in the last five years, not substantially, there’s been a big influx.

I could have done that in an article for The Epoch Times, and indeed I have. This needs to be a kind of dramatic narrative, and it needs people in it. The primary person I use, ever regret to say, is the person I sort of know best, meaning me.

Leahy: You sort of know yourself depending on the day. (Chuckles)

Simon: There are things you don’t know about yourself, of course. The idea of this has to be a drama. And the drama, I realized when reading it, was for the reader, does this guy like this place or not? I’m not going to give away whether I say yes or no, because you got to buy the book.

But there’s a tension in the book that comes from that because there are things that I like and things I don’t like any normal human being. And it’s just not like or not like. It’s also accommodate himself to it, or not accommodate himself to it.

Leahy: Let me see if I can get what the narrative would be. People moving from California and other blue states where freedom is crushed, to states like Tennessee.

Simon: Where it’s supposed to be all here, but is not quite all here.

Leahy: That is the theme of the book, isn’t it? The theme of the book is, I thought I was going from the lack of freedom…

Simon: To nirvana.

Leahy: To nirvana, the full existence of freedom. But wait, there’s more!

Simon: Anyway, that’s to be expected rationally, really. But it’s an experience. And also the other theme of the book is that the refugees are changing Tennessee and Tennessee is changing the refugees. So you’ve got a two-way street, which is fair and interesting, I think.

Leahy: So how many people did you interview about this or is this sort of a collection of anecdotes? Are there multiple key characters in the book?

Simon: Yes. I can’t even answer the question because sometimes it wasn’t even an interview. I’d go hang out in the place and chat with people. On numerous occasions, I did that, which is actually a more interesting way. Some of it’s experiential and in some cases I formally interviewed people.

Leahy: You have this big advantage in writing a book. I’m just being honest here. You have great talent as a writer. This is my opinion, one of the best writers in America today, in my view.  It’s you, who is you sitting right across from me.

Because you’re funny. This is what people like. It’s funny and amusing. You can follow the plot and even in your columns, right? You’re one of the most popular columnists at The Epoch Times because they are funny.

Simon: Because we need relief from the world.

Leahy: So is there going to be a movie made out of this book?

Simon: Maybe. We’ve been talking to The Epoch Times about doing a documentary. Obviously, it’s not a fictional work, so it doesn’t get a movie like Hollywood. As if Hollywood would make movies with me anymore. That’s questionable.

Leahy: No, they would not. You’re not a Marvel comic book.

Simon: And not only that, I can’t get onto Facebook, so how could I make a movie? It’ll be up to me and to them a little bit. But we’re going to see about it. I think, like everything else, you have to reconstitute it when you do it as a documentary. But I would be more in a somewhat thinner Michael Moore mode, probably walking around talking to people. And we’d probably have the cameras in this room.

Leahy: I think a lot of people in Tennessee would like to see this kind of documentary because a lot of people are coming to Tennessee from these other states. Every day I hear about somebody. I just heard this morning somebody left Illinois and came to the Nashville area. Why? Because they were sick and tired of Illinois.

Simon: Yes. There are a lot of reasons to leave Illinois.

Leahy: I can understand that.

Simon: You sure can. Also, there is a guy in there that Michael knows more about than me. A mysterious character named Rocky Top who actually the publisher said, that’s really interesting what you did with that guy.

Leahy: Rocky Top figures in your book and your publisher thinks Rocky Top is an interesting character.

Simon: Yes. Rocky Top is a sometime blogger who is a man who obviously remains anonymous and was in the upper echelons of politics in D.C. and here in Tennessee. So he’s a very knowledgeable fellow with a kind of nasty sense of humor. (Leahy laughs)

Listen to today’s show highlights, including this interview:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to The Tennessee Star Reporwith Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Roger Simon” by Roger Simon.



Epoch Times Reporter Nathan Worcester Talks Bias at the National Archives Revealing the Depths of The Swamp

Epoch Times Reporter Nathan Worcester Talks Bias at the National Archives Revealing the Depths of The Swamp

Live from Music Row, Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed The Epoch Times reporter, Nathan Worcester to the newsmaker line to discuss his recent article addressing bias at the National Archives and links to the Penn Biden center document scandal.

Leahy: All-star panelist, Gary Chapman in studio. And on our newsmaker line right now with The Epoch Times. Nathan Worcester. I think I got it. Nathan, how do you pronounce your last name?

Worcester: Exactly as you pronounced it. Worcester. Very good.

Leahy: Very good. Worcester, Massachusetts.

Chapman: Not, up there. It’s Worcester.

Leahy: Worcester. Nathan what a great story you have at The Epoch Times. Headline: Background Reviews of Top Officials Support Allegations of Bias at the National Archives. Tell us about what you’ve written here.

Worcester: The National Archives has been at the center of the Biden documents scandal. It was also at the center of the Trump documents case. And so, naturally, I wanted to look into the allegations of partisan bias. That’s a concern that James Comer, who’s leading the House Oversight Committee, and the inquiry into what has happened with the classified documents from President Biden’s vice presidency, he’s concerned about that.

So examining a little more closely the histories and the recorded comments from some of these top officials. For example, the lead counsel for NARA, Gary Stern, who has been with the agency for more than two decades, the Acting National Archivist Debra Steidel-Wall, and then the nominee, all of them have a very strong history of partisan statements.

A look at federal elections data shows that there’s almost a strikingly uniform partisan pattern in who these employees of the National Archives donate to. There’s a lot of evidence, frankly, that I’m still assembling to form and even fold a picture of what this agency looks like and what some of the top officials may or may not have had in mind at particular times. But it sort of goes to show the depths of what some people call The Swamp.

Leahy: And what’s interesting is they’ve treated current President Joe Biden more favorably than they’ve treated former President Donald Trump. I think that’s the bottom line here, isn’t it?

Worcester: Yes. I think that you look at the entire record of what we know so far, and frankly, we don’t know enough. And part of the reason we don’t know enough is the lack of transparency and the fact that Biden’s lawyers have been essentially allowed to look into these documents that are being recovered even according to their timeline, which, again, we still don’t fully know.

And this is the sort of thing that, for example, the House Committee on Weaponization of Government and the Oversight Committee, and other committees should attempt to get to the bottom of through subpoenas. But, yes, it would seem as though there are concerns about the unfairness that have not been resolved.

There has now been an FBI search directed at at least one location. On the other hand, this was apparently a consensual search. This was not a raid by any standards, unlike what some people have said about the Mar-a-Lago search.

Leahy: Andrew McCarthy, as you know, writes at the National Review and former Assistant U.S. Attorney. Very well known. He wrote something interesting. And let me just share this with you and then kind of get your reaction. What he noted was that sort of the public statement here is that Biden’s personal attorneys just happened to stumble across on November second, some documents that were classified in a locked closet.

They claim there was no Corvette there at the Penn Biden Center at 101 Constitution Avenue which is largely financed by anonymous Chinese donations through the University of Pennsylvania. The story is the attorney’s told the White House and the White House told the National Archives, and the National Archives then told the Department of Justice.

Except, wait, there’s more. (Chapman chuckles) Turns out, according to Andrew McCarthy, it wasn’t any of these sorts of left-leaning officials at the National Archives that told the Department of Justice on November fourth. It was the Inspector General for the National Archives. Have you followed that part of the story?

Worcester: No, that’s an incredibly important detail. I’ve been following, for example, that element. But really the thing that stood out to me was the October statement from NARA that any claims of documents having been mishandled by the Obama-Biden presidency or other presidencies were false and misleading. This was the line they were running with at that point in time.

Leahy: In October.

Worcester: Yep. Less than a month prior to when these documents were supposedly first discovered.

Leahy: You said something very important. Supposedly first discovered. I look at this and do you suggest that there were more documents known and discovered prior to November second?

Worcester: I would again say that honestly, the timeline so far, I think one reason why it’s so difficult to follow is that we have to recover more information through, hopefully, things like the Freedom of Information Act requests, hopefully through House subpoenas.

I would say it doesn’t exactly surprise me, this notion that some people seem to share, the belief that there’s probably more than we have been told. Just the timing around when this information was made public, the timing around the apparent involvement of Lausch’s appointee for the special counsel Hur.

It still doesn’t really add up. And I’m really hoping that over the next few weeks, we’ll get to the answer before this is moved away from the news cycle even further. I looked at my Google News feed this morning and of course, anything related to the Biden documents is down at the bottom.

Leahy: Yes, of course. Now, the other news on Friday, the Department of Justice searched the Wilmington residence of Joe Biden, and then Saturday, his personal attorney announced that they discovered six more classified documents at his residence, some of which, wait for it…some of this dated from his time in the United States Senate.

To me, that is a dramatic difference from documents during his time as V.P. Arguably, he could say, well, an executive order from 2009 President Obama allowed him to declassify. I think that’s arguable. But there’s no defense for having classified documents from his time in the Senate. Your thoughts?

Worcester: Yes. There’s even more to it than that, because as I understand it, this wasn’t necessarily six classified documents. These were six items. Six items in some of the FBI terminology that could refer to six boxes full of who knows how many documents are in there.

Leahy: Gary Chapman has a question for you.

Chapman: No, I just didn’t know that. I didn’t know that there was a possibility that it was more than it appeared on the surface.

Leahy: Six items could be six boxes. That’s what you’re saying could possibly be.

Worcester: Yes.

Chapman: Wow.

Worcester: I think it’s going to be very important for journalists, hopefully, I am one of them, but other journalists to really over the next few weeks as this is released, I think in a fairly strategic way to continue to piece together the timeline and make sure that that sort of crafty legalese doesn’t slip through the cracks.

Listen to today’s show highlights, including this interview:

– – –

Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to The Tennessee Star Reporwith Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Nathan Worcester” by Nathan Worcester. Background Photo “United States Capitol” by Paula Nardini.


The Epoch Times Senior Editor Roger Simon Discusses His Latest Piece and Urges Citizens to Run for Local School Boards

The Epoch Times Senior Editor Roger Simon Discusses His Latest Piece and Urges Citizens to Run for Local School Boards


Live from Music Row Thursday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed all-star panelist and senior editor-at-large at The Epoch Times, Roger Simon, in-studio to speak about his latest piece addressing the need for citizens to take back America by running for their school board.

Leahy: We are joined in the studio by our very good friend, my former boss at PJTV.  Also Academy Award-nominated screenwriter and now a senior editor-at-large for The Epoch Times, Roger Simon. Roger, good morning.

Simon: This is a good morning because the coffee is good here. (Giggles)

Leahy: I made it, especially for you.

Simon: Because I complained.

Leahy: You must start the day off with good coffee. And as our listeners are there getting up, most of them are brewing their coffee right now. And they’re starting to pour it. And so, like us, we are enjoying coffee as we have our morning discussions.

Simon: I was just going to say one thing about coffee. Woody Allen said life is 90 percent about showing up. Actually, it’s not even said about a coffee.

Leahy: Coffee helps you show up and get the day started.

Simon: You have a terrific commentary at The Epoch Times. I’d like you to talk about it. I think this is the central point of what’s happening in America today. You write, to save America, run for school board.

Simon: Yes. I don’t think there’s anything more important John Q or Jane Q citizen can do other than run for school board at this point in the history of the United States. Ironically, as I say in the piece, it’s more important than running for Senate or Congress or any highfaluting job you can think of it. It’s the grassroots of the grassroots.

What’s interesting about it is that one of the commenters on my piece already – and it only went up at 11 o’clock last night, but it’s really getting a lot of traction – it reminded us that Lenin said to give him four years of educating any young person and he would have them for life.

Leahy: And I think those four years kind of go up to fourth grade. By fourth grade, they’re 90 percent formed, I think.

Simon: I think you’re right.

Leahy: Of course, we have actually some educators out there who may comment on that note. Just as an aside tonight, Roger, I’ll invite you to join me at this event. It is an open house for Thales Academy in Franklin at 6 pm.

If you come, you might want to write about it at The Epoch Times. This is a fabulous private school. It’s a chain now of eight.

Simon: People have been telling me about that for a couple of years, and I am anxious to see it.

Leahy: They use direct instruction as the most effective way to teach reading, writing, and arithmetic. Since it’s most effective, the teachers’ unions hate it. But it’s very effective.

And they have a classical education based on the values of Western civilization. They learn about American values and it’s a great place. The tuition cost is just a little over $5,000 a year.

Simon: That’s pretty good.

Leahy: That’s really good. Tonight on Carothers Parkway in Franklin.

Simon: This is all about running for the school board. And I learned a few things from my colleague and from my wife but also from my colleague Trevor Lauden at The Epoch Times who’s been studying this.

If you’re going to run for school board, which is a very important thing to do considering what’s happened with schools, where they’re teaching Critical Race Theory and all the rest of the absolute Marxist lies to your children, you should do two things: Do not run by yourself and try to run with four or five other people.

Leahy: A slate. It’s easier to organize campaigns that way. If you’re running by yourself, the opposition, basically a bunch of lefty groups, particularly here in Williamson County for years, have been doing this.

That’s why of the 12 members of the Williamson County School Board, about 10 are lefties and two are just struggling to deal with all that pressure from the left.

Simon: As we have heard, and there’s been a lot of research on this, that people get slanted very easily in campaigns when they’re by themselves because in the last three days they publicize, you know, when did you stop beating your wife or one of those kinds of things.

Leahy: And you got a parking ticket you didn’t pay 20 years ago. You are a scofflaw.

Simon: One of those things. You have no time to reply and you have no allies in making it good. So do it as a group. And I’ll tell the second thing.

Leahy: Alright, we’ll hold off till after the break.

(Commercial break)

Leahy: A great piece to Save America, Run for School Board. Now you were giving advice to people running for school board. I think Trevor Loudon is a guy who suggested this. Number one, run as a slate with others. Great advice.

Simon: That one came from my wife. But the second one comes from Trevor. And it’s true. And that is not just criticize, which we have to do and highlight Critical Race Theory and the rest of the nonsense that’s being inculcated in children.

But also come up with and have a program that you want to replace it with. A specific one. Thales Academy is one good example. The place that leads the country in all this is Hillsdale College. And if you go online, you can see their K-12 programs.

You don’t need to run with super details of this. Four or five bullet points are plenty for everybody to digest. But you’ve got to have something when you run for all or the people to say, oh, what are you going to do? Well, this is what we’re going to do.

Leahy: Implement this curriculum. Classic education curriculum, a pro-American history. Honest pro-American history.

Simon: And not this nonsense like two plus two don’t equal four because they’re racist or the other extreme stuff that’s being thrown out there right now.

Leahy: I don’t know if anybody’s ever told you this, Roger, but you are a very good writer. I’m just going to read two paragraphs from your piece. You’d be saving America from turning into the bleakest socialist Communist state imaginable, because that is what our current educational system, K-12 is designed to do.

And sadly, has been successful in doing literally for decades. And it’s only getting worse. You would in the process also be a true revolutionary in the tradition of the founders of our country in bringing back truth, justice, and the American way to our children and our children’s children.

Simon: That is rather good.

Leahy: No, it is great. It’s a lyrical salute to America.

Simon: Well, thank you. It took me a while to get there having had a left-wing path.

Leahy: (Laughs) But everybody has a left-wing path. You know, the famous quote from Churchill. “If you’re not a liberal when you’re 20, you don’t have a heart. And if you’re not a conservative when you’re 40, you don’t have a brain.”

Simon: Right.

Leahy: Except the problem is a lot of people kind of get stuck in that liberal stance because as we’re talking about the schools.

The John Dewey approach to schooling is a propaganda approach, and we have a generation of children who have come through schools where they aren’t taught to think independently, but rather to kind of anticipate the answer the teacher is looking for.

Simon: That answer is so dull and socialistic. And it’s quite sad what’s happened, because of the self-replicating system. The people who become teachers have been taught that, too, for years and years and years. So what we need is you, John Q citizen, to get out there and run for school board.

Leahy: And yet, Roger, you know, just thinking about this independently right now, I will say for those in our listening audience who are saying, yeah, I’ll run for school board. Then they think about it a little bit. It is a daunting task, given the current structure.

Let’s think about Metro Nashville Public Schools. Right now there are nine members of the school board. Eight of them are lunatic, left-wing ideologues. And one friend, Fran Bush, actually has a brain and is an intelligent person and has common sense. But it’s very difficult. She’s been our guest here in-studio many a time.

And when you look at the kind of groupthink conformity, left-wing ideology promoted by the school board director and their focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion. And then, headline at The Tennessee Star this morning: Metro Nashville Public Schools Director Calls for Board to Issue New Mask Mandate.

Simon: Here’s the irony in the whole thing. The United States spends more money on public education per capita than almost any country in the world. I believe Switzerland was once more. It varies, but we’re pretty close to the top and we’re getting terrible results. Think about that.

What a war on black people that is. Teaching equity and inclusion and all the rest of these buzzwords that are nothing but political power or fraud is an insult to the very people they’re trying to help.

They are the people who get screwed. Any Democrat out there should be ashamed of themselves. I used to be a Democrat, and I’m saying that. I mean, grow a brain.

Leahy: The problem is so they don’t think, they don’t analyze data, they just drop into almost a zealous religious approach.

Simon: Totally religious.

Leahy: It’s the religion of the left of totalitarianism, and it’s extraordinarily dangerous. We talked about this. The Judeo-Christian principles of Western civilization, that really is the building block of our American constitutional republic.

Simon: Of course it is. But sometimes they’re hard to follow. It’s easier to follow the leaders of the left who are going against that on every level. But you can save the country and yourselves by waking up to this. And I’m talking to liberals like I was. Some of them might be listening to this show.

Leahy: Our friend Karl, to whom I lost a bet because he bet that Joe Biden would be inaugurated. And I bet that it would be Trump. And I lost that bet. Took him out and had a steak dinner with him, bought it at Rafferty’s. Karl’s a great guy.

He got his start as a waiter at Rafferty’s and now has his own business, basically hauling junk and trash away from folks and very successful. But still, he’s got a certain worldview that’s different from ours. But he listens and we’re delighted he does.

Simon: Hello Karl. (Leahy laughs) We’ve never met.

Leahy: He is a nice guy.

Simon: But getting people to change their politics is very hard because most people have a whole network of reasons that they can’t change and that they won’t face or look at including work, including family, including friends. And it goes on and on.

And I’ve seen that all over the place. And I think most of us have. And right now we’re in a very bad place in our country because a lot of us are hating each other for reasons that have nothing to do with reality and have everything to do with being manipulated.

Leahy: But that’s an intentional effort at dividing the country, don’t you think?

Simon: Absolutely.

Leahy: This is what the Democratic leadership and I’ll go on, George Soros, Mark Zuckerberg, and the Chinese Communist Party, to me, all seem to be aligned in promoting American division.

Simon: Oh, absolutely. And they’re doing a good job, unfortunately. So it’s up to us. And that’s why back to the school board. That’s one of the places that any reasonably educated person can get in there and try to stop it.

When you were talking about how skewed the Metro school board is here, eight to one, and so forth, don’t let that stop you. Go, as I mentioned earlier, get three or four or five friends to run with you.

Leahy: As a slate.

Simon: As a slate. Don’t do it by yourself. Then you’re just running into a wall and it’s silly. But everybody’s got a few friends who are like-minded and do it together. First of all, you’ll help each other.

Secondly, you get more money that way from supporters. And that’s what you can do. And if we do that all over the country, the country is going to change.

Leahy: That’s a very good point. I think it’s an organizational challenge to a degree. Because it does have some similarities, I think, to the Tea Party movement…

Simon: It does.

Leahy: Way back when in 2008, 2009. You and I were involved.

Simon: You more than I.

Leahy: But it was putting people together and focusing them on a common goal. So we’ll see how it all plays out. Very insightful, Roger

Listen to the full third hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Board Meeting” by KOMUnews (CC BY 2.0).













All Star Panelist Roger Simon Paints Grim Future for New York City and Its Mayoral Race

All Star Panelist Roger Simon Paints Grim Future for New York City and Its Mayoral Race


Live from Music Row Thursday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed all-star panelist and senior editor-at-large at The Epoch Times, Roger Simon, in-studio who discussed his recent disappointing trip to New York City, the city’s future, and the race for mayor.

Leahy: We are joined in studio by the newest all-star panelist on The Tennessee Star Report. My former boss at PJTV. Academy Award-nominated screenwriter, novelist, great tennis player, and editor-at-large with The Epoch Times. Roger Simon. Good morning, Roger.

Simon: Good morning. I’m back from a dangerous zone.

Leahy: So, Roger, because you are an intrepid and courageous reporter, you went to a very, very dangerous local, and really, it’s on the edge of civilized society.

It’s a place called New York City, New York. (Simon sings Sinatra) You went there because out of just the importance of your mission to report to our audience what’s happening in the country today.

Thank you for your bravery. Tell us about what you discovered on your mission to New York City.

Simon: It’s the city of my birth, so it was a pretty sad adventure. What I did was, I went to an Epoch Times event that was being held in New York near their new offices. We are expanding.

But I stayed at a place called the Stewart Hotel, which is across the Street from Madison Square Garden, virtually. And it was sort of like visiting a Third World country.

It’s the first time I’ve been in New York since COVID. And most of the time, most years, I’d be there four times a year at least. And the feeling is at night, as you’re walking down the street with your head down and wish you had a hard hat.

It’s a really sad situation. And I’d like to be able to joke about it because I joke about most things. (Chuckles) But you can’t. This is the former capital of the world, really.

Leahy: The financial capital, media capital. And for a period of time, about a couple of years, the capital of the United States of America way back in 1789.

Simon: Right. But it’s none of the above right now. Well, they’re still fighting to be the financial capital, but it really shouldn’t be.

I don’t know how it’s ever going to come back to what it was. I don’t know. There are a lot of people there and there are people in the street, but they’re all wearing masks.

Leahy: They’re still wearing masks in the street.

Simon: A lot of people.

Leahy: Oh my goodness. Now, Mayor Bill de Blasio mercifully is leaving office. They had a primary up there on the Democratic side after a lot of problems, shall we say, about what was an accurate vote and what was not.

It looks like the winner of the Democratic primary is the former police captain who’s a little bit of a lefty.

Simon: A little bit? He was a Farrakhan supporter.

Leahy: More than a little bit of a lefty. What’s his name? Eric Adams.

Simon: And he’s going to be running against the Republican, which is not a real election. Curtis Sliwa.

Leahy: The Guardian Angels guy.

Simon: The Guardian Angels guy.

Leahy: He’s a talk show host.

Simon: I’m told it’s pretty good – A good friend of mine who is working for him.

Leahy: It will be 70-30.

Simon: But it’s not a real election.

Leahy: 80-20.

Simon: I mean, it’s a product of everything that’s happening in our culture, including the educational system, that you get a vote like that in New York City. Kind of like Nashville. No, not quite as bad. (Chuckles)

Leahy: Not quite bad. But now let’s talk about this. Are you optimistic or pessimistic that this very dangerous place where you were born and was beautiful when you were born there? Great city.

One of the greatest cities in the world. Now it’s a very dangerous place. What do you think the future holds for New York City?

Simon: Nothing good in the near future. It’s hard to say. The old Yogi Barra line: Predictions are dangerous, especially about the future. (Leahy laughs)

Leahy: But if you come to a fork in the road take it.

Simon: I remember New York in the 1950s when I was a kid. My friends and I used to get on the subway ourselves at the age of 11 to go to the Yankee games, sit in the bleachers for 65 cents, have a great time, and come back at 10 p.m.

Leahy: Safe. And your parents weren’t worried.

Simon: And our parents wouldn’t say anything. Oh, your back! I can’t imagine it being like that now. I mean, it’s so different. It’s a different universe. And it’s not a better one.

Leahy: When is the general election between Eric Adams and Curtis Silwa? Is it August?

Simon: I guess so. Yeah, I think it is. That’s right. But it’s not an election.

Leahy: It’s a coronation of Eric Adams. When he is inaugurated as the new mayor of New York City, will New York City be better, worse, or about the same as under Bill DeBlasio?

Simon: Better. A little. He’s an ex-cop. He’ll support the NYPD a bit more because that’s one of the worst parts about it. You feel unsafe in Manhattan.

I wasn’t even in the outer boroughs. I didn’t have time. In the heart of Manhattan, you feel unsafe.

Leahy: Not a very ringing endorsement for the city of your birth.

Simon: No.

Leahy: Not at all.

Listen to the full third hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Eric Adams” by Krystalb97. CC BY-SA 4.0.