Samuel Vargo worked as a full-time reporter and editor for more than 20 years at a number of daily newspapers and business journals. He was also an adjunct English professor at colleges and universities in Ohio, West Virginia, Mississippi and Florida for about a decade. He holds a B.A. in Political Science and an M.A. in English (both degrees were awarded by Youngstown State University).
Why I write comedy, satire, and yes, even "fake" news
An attack on 'fake news' is an attack on the First Amendment. Slander and libel laws have been designed to punish those creating hard copy stories without any satiric or comedic value from misleading the public. Let these right-wingers take a slice at fake news and soon, they'll be after real, substantive, accurate news. Wait and see.
A Big Rebel Yell: The Deep South has more than its share of H2O woes
The Deep South, long associated with being business friendly and open to new business pursuits of many varieties, is getting litigious in fighting against companies that are destroying land and polluting water. Southern hospitality comes with a really mean redneck side. Southern communities and even states are seeing red over continued ecological destruction.
Wednesday, July 27, 2016(9 comments)
Lies, lies, and more lies
Lies, lies, and more lies. It's what was thrown around a lot during Bill Clinton's speech. And although the overall biographical facts might have been right on the mark, the general theme of Hillary and Bill's storybook romance has been anything but this. In fact, it's been a romantic trainwreck!
Friday, July 22, 2016(2 comments)
Sorry, "I don't know...," isn't good enough
If you're a young or even a middle-aged black man, watch out, the police may have you in their rifle scopes. North Miami police shot a man who is a behavioral therapist, doing his job trying to get an autistic patient back to a group home for the emotionally disturbed, when he was gunned down by the cops. "I don't know...," was the reason the policeman said when asked why he shot Charles Kinsey.
The writer of this op-ed did a "hatchet job" of the Canadian national anthem, "O Hillary" in celebration of America's 2016 Fourth of July extravaganza. Not to leave out that little email problem that Hillary has. And now the F.B.I.'s involved. My my my!
Activism for James Magaska Swan goes back to his high school days
James Magaska Swan's activism goes all the way back to when he was a student at a charter high school in Seattle, Wash., that had an enrollment of only Native American children. Today, his United Urban Warrior Society, with more than 30 chapters throughout the USA and Canada, fights for the rights of American Indians, and other races, too, even Caucasians who really don't have a group to defend them.
President Obama's decree may save sacred Apache ceremonial land from being made into a copper mine
Designating Oak Flat as a National Historic Place could nix plans for making this sacred Apache site into a copper mine owned by foreign interests. But there are no guarantees. Arizona federal legislators John McCain, Paul Gosar, Ann Kirkpatrick and Jim Flake did their best late last year - in December 2015 - to stealthily and sneakily stick legislation calling for this land swap of sacred Apache land into a defense bill.
Some thoughts on Canada's upcoming federal election on Oct. 19
Canada's federal election, which includes voting for Prime Minister, is a little more than a month away, on Monday, Oct. 19. In the overall scope of things, right now this election is of much more importance than next November's U.S. presidential election, yet most Americans don't know or seem to care about this upcoming event. This is scary that America has become so myopic.
Plastic pollution is an environmental horror story with a never-ending plot
Plastic is non-biodegradable. Every bit of plastic ever produced is still around, in some shape or form. In a consumer-driven society, much of this plastic ends up in the ocean, not in landfills. It's a threat to humankind's food supply, and also, to the habitat of the world's wildlife. It's an environmental nightmare that keeps getting creepier and creepier. Some plastic can be recycled into fuel, which is a good thing.
There's nothing patriotic about the PATRIOT Act, and there is no proof it's even working
The Patriot Act needs to go by the wayside and now's as good of a time to get rid of this thing as ever. It's just an excuse to eat away at our civil liberties, and if the federal government wants to begin securing the country from foreign threats, it had better begin with keeping these pasky gyrocopter drivers, drone enthusiasts, and fence jumpers off the White House lawn.
Wednesday, April 22, 2015
American Indian Mascots and Team Names Need to be Retired and Banned
American Indian team names and mascots from the high school to college and professional sports levels create a cultural insensitivity and racist attitude towards real aboriginal people. The proliferation of these Indian team names and mascots have an avalanche effect - from badly written articles and headlines by racist, hack sportswriters to throngs of drunken revelers wearing headdresses at parties.
Wednesday, April 1, 2015(7 comments)
Say hello to Nestle' and its top bottle man, the meanest corporate vampires in the world
Nestle' is the meanest corporation in the world. And despite his seemingly caring, "nice guy" approach, Nestle's Chairman and CEO has a mean-spirited business acumen, too. Yes, Nestle' is intent on making water not a free public resource, but a salable product, and the masses will spend an ever-increasing portion of their money on water. Face it, without water in your life, there is no life.
Wearing a badge today, is it a license to kill?
With the killing of a homeless man outside a Los Angeles homeless shelter, it seems that wearing a badge gives someone a license to kill. After looking over a video shot by a bystander of the incident, it's not a bias against the police to ask, "Is there something wrong with this picture?" No, it's just common sense to see that what happened on the southern California sidewalk was most likely murder in broad daylight.
Sunday, January 25, 2015
Yellowstone River spill should be considered a harbinger
The Yellowstone River pipeline break on Jan. 17, which saw an estimated 40,000 to 50,000 gallons of crude oil seep into the public waterway, is only an example of more disaster to come. Stiffer criminal penalties need to be levied against those involved with such acts of what many environmentalists consider to be acts of eco-terrorism.
"Rolling Stone" has some big stones hurled their way
"Rolling Stone" magazine didn't do the rising social concern of rape on university campuses any justice with Sabrina Rubin Erdely's article: "A Rape on Campus: A Brutal Assault and Struggle for Justice at UVA;" no, it set this issue back to the Dark Ages. . . ."Rolling Stone" needs to focus on musicians, TV stars, and glitterati, and keep clear of the heavy atomic issues like rape.
Welcome to the Flesh Farm-- The Human Resources Involved With Just Being Human
While visiting a company recently, I saw a sign that read "Human Resources" and I tossed around the implication of this business buzzword. Are we only resources? Have we totally dehumanized our brothers and sisters as being nothing more or less than homo sapient machines? And historically, some groups of people have classed other groups into a "subhuman" class, which is a much more jarring and unsettling notion.
Saturday, September 20, 2014
The RCMP, the Highway of Tears, and a Prime Minister Who Doesn't Care
With around 1,200 cases of missing and murdered aboriginal women in Canada over the course of the last few decades, one would think the Canadian Prime Minister would want to take urgent and drastic action to find the root of the cause of this nightmare. But P.M. Stephen Harper has no such intention, and many Indian people feel the Royal Canadian Mounted Police are the primary culprits here.
Monday, August 25, 2014(1 comments)
Yes, West Virginia, there is a Snallygaster
Destination America's "Mountain Monsters" series features the AIMS team - a group of West Virginia native sons who go after mysterious creatures that are said to inhabit the remote hills and forests of the Mountain State. And although this is an entertaining show, with a colorful cast, how much monster hunting in reality TV is too much. Or is this show, with its formula reality format, simply too much?
Tuesday, July 29, 2014(2 comments)
Is it John or Jane Law's Duty to Protect and Serve? Well, Not Always (Part Three)
Was Eric Garner's case of police brutality and his subsequent murder at the hands of the NYPD an oddity? Well, if you tune into cop-watch websites regularly, as egregious and hideous as this "illegal" cigarette vendor's murder was, it is anything but extraordinary. There is a pattern, and also, a sordid culture, of such transgressions. Cop-watch Internet sites are never at a loss to find new material to post daily.
For Only Two Andrew Jackson Greenbacks, Any Diva Can Look Like an Indian War Chief
Culture Vulture celebrities are wearing the First Nation's headdress around with seeming impunity and are relishing in the attention they're getting by making this very important Indian icon a fashion ornament. But Native Americans aren't very happy with this, and they're being quite vocal in opposition to making the headpiece part of a woman's wardrobe.
Wednesday, July 9, 2014
Is it John or Jane Law's Duty to Protect and Serve? Well, Not Always (Part Two)
The second part of a two-part combo on transgressions by those employed to protect and serve the public is more of the same sort of hard-copy horrors that make police chiefs and mayors cringe, not liking this type of PR. These articles were taken from big and small newspapers, alternative online mags, and some TV news websites. It's 98% hard-copy, with little editorializing. It's circumstantial.
Thursday, June 26, 2014(5 comments)
Is it John or Jane Law's Duty to Protect and Serve? Well, Not Always (Part One)
Vile and evil are these incidents associated with police misconduct and equivocated abuse of power. Killing unarmed citizens with no threat whatsoever to them, these police shouldn't be wearing badges. No, they should be behind bars. Even screaming and swearing at middle-school children on a school bus shouldn't be tolerated by the civil servants employed by the public's trust.
Going with the Flo: The Longevity and Effectiveness of a Serialized Advertising Character
Televised advertisements are often meant to be funny. Some are, some aren't, but most would say the majority of ads are real duds. Oftentimes what's being advertised is overlooked or overshadowed by advertisers' attempts at humor. Are these ads effective? Instead of hiring teams of MBAs with marketing degrees, why not hire a few out-of-work or marginally employed stand-up comics and gag writers?
Wednesday, June 4, 2014
Why is the stylus stuck on 1994, then it skips back to 1979?
Classic Rock has taken over the airwaves, but where is all the new talent hiding - all the up-and-coming Rock & Rollers?
Is Cyberspace Communism somehow to blame? Can and will the music industry take some bold moves to prevent Internet piracy of Copyrights?
A lot more action is required. And this very important, influential and powerful industry must become much bolder and tougher if this criminality is to end.
Wednesday, May 21, 2014(2 comments)
How's the weather?
Climate change is upon us, but, according to experts, it isn't too late yet, if everyone does some drastic lifestyle changing. Even as bad as it seems, with the polar ice caps melting, the tipping point won't be until it starts getting unlivable at the equator. That's when the tipping point will be upon us all.
The politics of heroin: Trying to break the dangerous wild horse
Heroin has become a political monster in America. The arrival of April Fools' Day saw federal and state officials nationwide involved in many political acts - with consequences and intended remedies designed and created to thwart this epidemic horror. One thing's for sure - nobody's joking around about the stark realities involving heroin.
Saturday, March 29, 2014(1 comments)
What ever happened to good sportsmanship?
Bad sportsmanship is so prevalent these days that it's almost become acceptable. Athletes and fans act out not only with hostility, but sometimes even with violence. But should we now ask ourselves is it safe to attend an NFL game? Is Missy or Junior going to learn anti-social traits like bullying by playing midget league football or T-Ball?
Tuesday, March 25, 2014(1 comments)
Controversy Sparked by L. Brooks Patterson
A longtime politician in an affluent Detroit suburban county has created fury for comments he made about Native Americans and the Motor City in a January issue of "The New Yorker".
For Only Two Andrew Jackson Greenbacks, Any Diva Can Look Like an Indian War Chief
Culture Vulture celebrities are wearing the First Nations headdress around with seeming impunity and are relishing in the attention they're getting by making this very important Indian icon a fashion ornament. But Native Americans aren't very happy with this, and they're being quite vocal in opposition to making the headpiece part of a woman's wardrobe.