This spec documentary treatment written for Radical Media in 2013.
On July 21, 2013, Yusuf Islam turned sixty-five – according to the solar calendar. On the Islamic lunar calendar, he turned sixty-seven.
Yusuf has long straddled two worlds, sometimes working to reconcile them, sometimes working to keep them apart. His latest project, the musical Moonshadow, attempts both. Part autobiography, part fantasy, part Steven Georgiou, part Cat Stevens, part Yusuf Islam, the musical reflects the yearning and searching that is Steven and Yusuf. Continue reading ““Yearning Steven, Searching Yusuf””
“You could hardly hear the announcer over all the cheers,” Pancho said breathlessly. “As I galloped into the stadium, everyone went wild. They were screaming, ‘Pan-CHO! Pan-CHO!’ and U-S-A! U-S-A!’ It was amazing.”
Al, who had been engaged in a post-breakfast cleaning, wasn’t really listening. “You don’t say,” he responded distractedly. He threw in a few, ‘Ohs,’ and ‘Mhmms,’ for good measure.
The morning sun peeked over the distant trees, stretching its rays through the top half of the open barn doors. It wasn’t long before Pancho felt the relaxing warmth work its way through his shaggy golden coat, all the way down to his skin. He sighed with pleasure and stretched out on his bed of fresh shavings.
Ponies like Pancho – all horses, really – don’t lie down very often. They sleep standing up, since they need to be ready to bolt at a moment’s notice. But Pancho got tired easily, and he had learned that lying down was a respite from the pain he felt in his left front hoof when he stood for long periods of time.
He was just thinking about how lovely the sunshine felt on his neck when the warmth suddenly disappeared. He had a feeling someone was watching him, and he was right. As he opened an eye, a small black and white blob came into view. It was a cat, perched on the lip of Pancho’s Dutch stall door – and this cat was deliberately hogging up his sunspot!
The U.S Office of Government Ethics was established in 1978 through the Ethics in Government Act. It “provides overall leadership and oversight of the executive branch ethics program designed to prevent and resolve conflicts of interest.” Apparently the Trump White House has not welcomed such oversight. Consequently, the office’s director, Walter M. Schaub, Jr., announced he would resign on July 19, 2017 stating, “In working with the current administration, it has become clear that we need to strengthen the ethics program.”
Even prior to Donald J. Trump’s inauguration as the 45th President of the United States, the OGE anticipated his potential conflicts of interest, encouraging the President-Elect to divest himself of his businesses. That did not happen. Other ethics issues arose, but Trump has been recalcitrant about addressing them. These issues highlight a distinction between what the law and ethics separately require. Think about it this way: what’s legal is not always ethical. For example, there is no law requiring U.S. presidential candidates or sitting presidents to disclose their tax returns. It is, however, not the norm, and for good reason. Continue reading “Conflicts of Interest, Ethics, and Donald J. Trump”