Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Thursday's radio show line up on WCEV 1450 AM Radio Chicagoland

Some of the guests scheduled for Thursdays edition of Radio Chicagoland, WCEV 1450 AM Radio, 4 to 6 PM (streaming live on the internet at

4:05 PM: Authors of a new book"Hidden Letters," a true story of an 18 year old Dutch Jew's tale of the Holocaust while interned inside a forced labor camp in 1942. The annotators of Hidden Letters (Deborah Slier and Ian Shine, a 75 year old couple who commute on their bicycle built for 2 rom Central Park to Queens) discuss how the hidden letters from 1942 surfaced in the 1990’s, how they felt upon meeting the survivors of the Sobibor concentration camp uprising, and why this honest account of a young Jew trying to survive in an internment camp during the Holocaust is so moving. I'd be happy to ship you a review copy of the book. May 1 is Holocaust Remembrance Day.

5:05 PM: VOICES OF OUR SOLDIERS feature! First Sgt. Scott Maynard, is from the Southeast Side of Chicago, Illinois, talks about serving in Iraq. Maynard is currently now in Iraq at "FOB Hammer" near Sadr City and is expected to return to hsi wife and four children in June. He comes from a long line of War veterans with 12 of his family members having served in the military since World War II. (Pre-taped)

visit for more details on other guests

Ray Hanania

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

When CIndy McCain says she loves and supports her country, what does she mean?

I saw Cindy McCain on The View, a great program to remind us that this isn't a man's world any more. It's just a world. (I love Whoppie Goldberg!).

But Cindy McCain said there and elsewhere that she loves and supports this country. What does that mean? Does it mean that she doesn't think there are things that need to be improved? Does she think it is perfect and that imperfections don't exist? Or, does she believe that there are problems, but it is "unpatriotic" to address those problems?

I think this country has problems. And I think the real American Patriot is the American who recognizes that this is a great country with problems and we must correct those problems. And the best way to correct those problems is to address them, using the very instrument that makes this the world's greatest Democracy, "Free Speech."

But when we try to say that we are better than someone else because we don't criticize our country, we remain silent in the face of wrongs, and injustice, then what we become is complicit in the problems.

Imagine if the response to those who championed civil rights was, "Hey, I love and support this country and you don't because you are criticizing its policies." If that were the case, African Americans would still be lynched on Patriotic American trees. African Americans would be slaves and African Americans would be denied the right to vote. In fact, women would be denied the right to vote, too, and would be oppressed and denied equal right.

No, I think loving this country is in fact about speaking out against its failings and speaking out in order to correct those failings.

But, when we respond to the discussion about how to improve this country by calling some people unpatriotic, then we are basically embracing the problems, hiding from the problems, and avoid the moral and principled responsibilities.

Ray Hanania

Friday, April 18, 2008

War-related corruption case building

The Rockford Trial of the Iraq war corruption case is continuing.

Here's a link to my story on First Kuwaiti and contractor Jeff Mazon:

Here's a link to the Washington Post which has not covered the Mazon trial but reported on the completion of the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad:

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce survey shows widespread public concern over increased taxes

April 15, 2008
Contact: Justin DeJong (Chamber) 312-494-6725
Greg Durham (Ask IL) 217-899-7181

New poll shows widespread dissatisfaction with Chicagoland tax climate

Results indicate that taxpayers plan to hold elected officials accountable for
latest increases; pending 10.25% sales tax rate will cause consumers’ to
leave Cook County for purchases

CHICAGO ­– Even as many taxpayers scramble to pay their federal taxes, a new poll released today shows widespread dissatisfaction with the Chicagoland tax climate which has burdened the region’s taxpayers with more than $1.2 billion in higher city, county and state taxes in the past six months. Among the most astounding findings: more than 92 percent of Cook County residents polled said the latest tax increases will affect who they vote for in future elections, while nearly 76 percent said the pending 10.25 percent sales tax rate will change their purchasing behavior and cause them to travel outside of Cook County to avoid paying higher sales tax.

“This poll confirms that there is widespread anger and dissatisfaction about the current tax climate in our region and voters plan to hold their elected officials accountable at the ballot box,” said Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Jerry Roper. “Despite raising taxes by $1.2 billion within the past six months, we continue to hear officials at every level of government threaten to raise taxes again, but we’re reaching a tipping point where our region’s economic competitiveness is at risk. Our elected officials must recognize that enough is enough.”

The Ask Illinois poll, commissioned by the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, was completed on April 10 with 3,025 participants from throughout Cook County. The poll had a 1.78 percent margin of error. Complete poll results are available at

Additional poll results show:
· Nearly 36 percent of those polled hold the Cook County Board most responsible for higher taxes, while 42 percent held the Chicago City Council, Cook County Board and Illinois General Assembly equally at fault.
· 95 percent of those polled felt the overall tax burden on Cook County resident was high, with nearly 82 percent who felt the burden was ‘extremely high.’
· The pollsters noted that there is growing dissatisfaction about the overall tax burden – up more than 24 percent over previous surveys.

“These results indicate a total lack of ambiguity in the opinions of Cook County residents concerning the region’s tax climate,” said Greg Durham, pollster for Ask Illinois. “There is across-the-board anger about recent tax increases, which transcend all geo-political differences and will impact both future voting and where purchases will be made.”

Within the past six months, elected officials at all levels of government have approved a flurry of tax increases which impact the economic climate of the region and state. These tax increases include:

November 2007
The Chicago City Council passes record property tax increase and raises many fees for the 2008 budget
$270 million
January 2008
The Illinois General Assembly and Chicago City Council pass a .25% sales tax increase and real estate transfer tax increase to fund the RTA
$530 million
February 2008
The Cook County Board passes 1% sales tax increase, and hikes rate to 10.25% – the highest sales tax rate in the nation
$425 million

$1.25 billion

About the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce:
Since its founding in 1904 as the first regional chamber of commerce in the United States, the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce’s mission is to make our region the most business-friendly region in America and enhance its members’ success through aggressive programs of advocacy, member benefits and services, and actionable information. The Chamber’s 2,600 members employ more than 1.2 million individuals in the region. Learn more by visiting

About Ask Illinois:
Ask Illinois and its national division, We Ask America, have polled more than four million American households since its inception in 2005. A division of Xpress Professional Services, Ask Illinois specializes in large sample surveys on public policy issues. The company’s clients include both major political parties, non-profit trade associations and private businesses throughout the country.

Justin DeJong
Director of Communications
Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce
200 E. Randolph Street, Suite 2200
Chicago, IL 60601
312-494-6725 (office)
312-636-7666 (cell)


Upcoming Special Events:
March 26: The Exchange, Hyatt Regency, 5-7pm
June 9: Annual Meeting of Membership, Sheraton Chicago, 7:45-9am
August 11: Annual Corporate Golf Outing, Beverly Country Club

Visit the Events Calendar on the Chamber’s website for additional information and to register for any of these events:

Monday, April 14, 2008

The biggest whiner in the world ... J.K. Rowling

What a real loser. J.K. Rowling, who has made millions on her "Harry Potter" book series is upset that someone had the nerve to take the pop culture her books have instilled around the world and put it in a companion book.

Rowling is crying that Steve Vander Ark's plans to publish an encyclopedia based on terms and prhases that have left Rowling's books and have become household words, violates her copyright. Vander Ark's genius idea has been to take the lexicon of Harry Potter -- which has become a language all its own in the world, and put it all down in an encyclopedia.

Hogwash! Someone should wave a wand and put Ms. Rowling in a 15th Century dungeon, and torture her back to reality. Rowling is an ungrateful author who eagerly cashes the checks from exploiting her readership audience, but wants to keep the most dedicated audience members from taking what they have learned from her books and interpreting them into a lexicon collection.

I am on the side of Vander Ark, a librarian who has spoken at Harry Potter conferences in several countries. Rowling counters she was planning to write her own lexicon and would donate the proceeds to a charity. She asserts she is anguished by Vander Ark's project

More Hogwash. Hogwarts. Hog is probably the best term yet. Add that to your lexicon Rowling witch!

Ray Hanania

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Why was American Airlines not punished sooner?

American Airlines was warned 18 months ago that it needed to address safety issues on its airlines. Why didn't it act then?

Today, the American Airlines PR Machine (read one reporter's opinion-news spin) is trying to spint he story that the real problem rests with the FAA and government bureaucracy. Really? What about the fact that American Airlines has been operating in an unsafe mode for 18 months, knew about the need to make the safety checks and improvements and did nothing?

Nothing, that is, until the FAA finally cam edown with a threat and then wanting to make it look like it is the FAA's fault, American Airlines decides to cancel hundreds of flights.

American Airlines should be fined huge! They should be punished and passengers whose flights were cancelled should be given the right to file lawsuits for damages caused when American Airlines, the unsafe airline that it is apparently, disrupted their lives in order to play politics with flight safety.

Ray Hanania

Friday, April 11, 2008

National Taxpayers United of Illinois Opposes Income Tax Hike

407 S. Dearborn, Suite 1170 * CHICAGO, ILLINOIS 60605
(312) 427-5128 * Fax (312) 427-5139 * Web Site <> * E-mail
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Jim Tobin (312) 427-5128 or (773) 354-2076 (Cell)
April 9, 2008


SPRINGFIELD—The president of Illinois’ largest taxpayer organization has asked each member of the State Government Administration Committee (SGAC) of the Ill. House to oppose House Joint Resolution Constitutional Amendment 42 (HJRCA42). The letter of opposition was sent by FAX to each committee member on Monday, April 7.

“State Representative Michael K. Smith (D-91, Pekin) has sponsored a constitutional amendment, HJRCA42, that would double the state personal income tax for upper-middle class taxpayers,” said Jim Tobin, President of National Taxpayers United of Illinois (NTUI). The SGAC will consider HJRCA42 at 8:30 am, April 9, in Capitol Building Room 114.

“This bill is an income-distribution scheme that would make Karl Marx proud,” said Tobin. “The state income tax would be initially doubled, to 6 percent, on that portion of income of individuals and joint-filers that exceeds $250,000.”

“This is a shameful class-warfare bill that deserves to be put in the trash bin. Chicago machine politician, St. Rep. Joseph Lyons (D-19, Chicago), was quoted as saying, ‘Let’s take from the rich and give to the poor.’ However, what this bill would really do is take money from productive citizens and transfer it to less productive government employees.”

“The bill would sock it to the 107,000 households in the state who earn more than $250,000 a year.”

“Part of this tax windfall would be given to the state’s overpaid public school teachers, administrators and consultants, and the remainder would go to pork barrel projects such as state-sponsored construction. As a token, the personal exemption would be doubled for those making less than $250,000 annually.”

“This back-breaking state income tax increase would cause small business owners to move to states with lower tax rates and increase Illinois’ unemployment rate. In a time of economic downturn, raising taxes would be catastrophic to the local business environment.”

“I ask the members of the State Government Administration Committee to scuttle this socialistic raid on Illinois’ most productive citizens.”

Founded in 1976, NTUI is the largest taxpayer organization in Illinois with over
10,000 members and affiliation with more than 200 local taxpayer organizations.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Google's having serious problems ... what the stock drop like a lead balloon

Google used to be the tops ...a nd all of a sudden, little cracks are appearing all over its Titanic Hull ... like ont he Video page where users upload videos. It used to have a perfect system to manage and record hits. You could get a total views on videos that you have uploaded for the day, the week, the month, past month and "all time." It was amazing, one of the things that made Google Video the best.

Now, the system is crashing practically every week and Google has to restart the counters ... they can't keep their statistics system running properly and the data keeps changing. It is very unreliable.

In addition, Google News isn't so newsy any more. It is too selective in what it showcases. It used to have a very liberal policy of placing articles on its front news page. Now, it's no different than mainstream sites. You used to be able to read some stories that might not otherwise find their way to your computer screen. In otherwords, what Google News offers now is the same crap that most mainstream online media offer. Nothing new. Same old same old. No diversity. Just rehash.


Ray Hanania

Bush way off base on Iraq war rhetoric

President Bush lives in his own little world of lies and distortions. How else do you explain a man so detached from reality?

15 Months ago, he told us today, al-Qaeda was increasing its strength and today we have them on the defensive.

Really? 60 Months ago, al-Qaeda didn't exist in Iraq. Bush brought them there.

Bush says the "Surge" is bringing Iraq closer to Democracy, but the reality the only thing the Surge is doing is allowing his Republican Party which got us into this unwinnable war, PR spin so they can prevent further losses in November.

Yes, the Republican Party is taking a beating. And while the Democrats have not been able to extricate this nation from the god-forsaken war in Iraq, they still are less guilty than the Republicans who bought all of Bush's lies and allowed Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld to push us into a conflict we never should have entered.

Today's press conference by Bush sounded much like the "We Have Prevailed" speech he gave months after illegally invading Iraq on March 19, 2003, falsely claiming "major combat operations are over."

If fighting this war is the only way to get out ot his war, then the American people, especially those who are blindly gung-ho supporting this wild expedition, should allow their sons and daughters to be DRAFTED into the military so we will have enough soldiers to fight the war.

But just as President Bush dodged active duty military service during the height of the Vietnam War, his Republican fanatic supporters want their own children to dodge active duty military service to fight this war. That's the hypocrisy in this conflict. The people screaming the loudest to fight this war are the ones who are refusing to send their own sons and daughters to fight it, relying on the soldiers who enlisted during the peacetime military era, hoping to off-set economic woes, and those gung-hoe and misguided Americans who enlisted in the military having swallowed whole all of Bush's outright lies.

15 months from now, we'll be in the same mud, mired in conflict, with an American death toll that is steadily climing and with no real hope of EVER bringing Western-style Democracy to Iraq.

And, 15 months from now, the real criminal, Osama Bin Laden, who orchestrated Sept. 11, 2001 which Bush used to justify this unjustified war in Iraq, is still loose in Afghanistan, protected in part by the Pakistani dictatorship we call an ally, the Government of Pervez Musharref.

What a mess!

Ray Hanania

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Iraqi US Marine Justin Kerwin of Glendale Heights on radio show this week

1st Lieutenant Justin Kerwin is our guest this week on Radio Chicagoland. Kerwin is a U.S. Marine from Glendale Heights near Carol Stream in the West Chicago suburbs. He has been serving in Iraq in the al-Anbar Province for about one month. A graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana, Lt. Kerwin discusses life in the Marines in Iraq and discusses the daily life of American marines fighting in Iraq.

It's not a political discussion -- as most Marines are prohibited from engaging in politics, but a fascinating insight into the life and challenges our soldiers face in Iraq.

Kerwin talks about his family, why he entered service and his favorite places growing up in Glendale Heights.

On Radio Chicagoland Thursday April 10, 2008 at 4 PM (The interview is pre-taped and is a part of the program's new regular feature, Voices from our Soldiers that will be featured in upcoming shows.

Ray Hanania

PS ... if you cannot pick up the station (WCEV 1450 AM Radio -- it only broadcasts in the afternoon and evenings) you can listen to the show live on, or you can go to to listen to the archived interview (usually the next day) online. You can also download the podcast of the interview to your iPods from the web site or off of iTunes (again, usually available the following day of the broadcast.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Nationwide Asthma Screening Program May 7 & 21 at Chicago Ridge Mall

12th annual Nationwide Asthma Screening Program which will be helping people in your area by finding those at risk for asthma and by helping those who are diagnosed take control.

The public service campaign is conducted by the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology and will be available in more than 250 communities. Chicago-area allergists will be conducting free asthma screenings in your area at the following dates and locations:

May 7 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Chicago Ridge Mall 831 Chicago Ridge Mall Drive, Chicago Ridge

May 21 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Chicago Ridge Mall, 831 Chicago Ridge Mall Drive, Chicago Ridge

During a screening, adults and children will be walked through a simple process that includes filling out a questionnaire, taking a painless lung function test (essentially just blowing into a tube) and meeting with an allergist to discuss the results of their screening.

This year, a special effort is being made to reach people who already know they have asthma but may be limiting their activities or missing days of school or work because of their disease. The initiative is in response to new government guidelines highlighting the importance of asthma control. A new brochure for people with asthma will be available at the screening.

I hope you can include information about this important health screening. I can also arrange an interview with a local allergist who can discuss asthma symptoms and the importance of taking control of the disease. For your convenience, below you can find the full release for the Nationwide Asthma Screening Program.


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill., May 1, 2008 – Free asthma screenings will help adults and children find out if breathing problems might be asthma, and will help diagnosed asthmatics take control of their disease. The program is the 12th annual Nationwide Asthma Screening Program, sponsored by the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI).
· Free asthma screenings for people with breathing problems and diagnosed asthmatics
· 22 million Americans have asthma
· New government guidelines highlight asthma control
Chicago-area allergists, who are asthma specialists, will offer free asthma screenings at the following locations:
· May 4 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at
Century Shopping Centre, 2828 N. Clark
Supported by AstraZeneca, the program has screened more than 108,000 people and referred more than half for further diagnosis.
This year a special effort is being made to reach people who already know they have asthma, but may be limiting their activities or missing days of school or work because their disease is not controlled. The initiative is in response to the latest guidelines from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) highlighting the importance of asthma control, including day-to-day monitoring and proper medication use to treat symptoms and prevent severe attacks from occurring.
“The government guidelines emphasize that undiagnosed or inadequately treated asthma worsens the severity of the disease,” said allergist John Winder, M.D., chair of the Nationwide Asthma Screening Program. “The screening program gives patients who are still having breathing problems a chance to meet with an allergist, discuss their symptoms and learn how to feel better.”
Asthma affects more than 22 million Americans, including 6.5 million children, and is responsible for almost 4,000 deaths a year. Although the exact cause of asthma is unknown, many treatments are available to control this chronic inflammation of the airways in the lungs.
An asthma attack is often triggered by allergens such as pollen, dust and animal dander, certain drugs and food additives, respiratory infections and physical exertion.
Once asthma is diagnosed, experts recommend aggressive treatment with allergen avoidance and medication. Because inflammation of the lungs and airways plays a central role in the development of asthma, the most effective medications are those that reduce inflammation. Studies show inhaled corticosteroids are the most powerful and effective anti-inflammatory medications for asthma, improving control of the disease and helping lungs function normally.
This year, a new brochure called Take Control: A Guide for People with Asthma highlighting the new federal guidelines will be available to help asthma patients learn more about managing their disease. The brochure discusses the goals of asthma treatment, measurement and control of symptoms, asthma triggers and avoidance, medications, and the importance of seeing an allergist. Information on allergy shots also is included.
“An asthma ‘attack’ isn’t the only sign of trouble. A cough that bothers you at night, shortness of breath, colds that go to your chest – these can all be symptoms of asthma, but few people recognize them or that they are a sign of undertreated disease,” said Dr. Winder. “No one with asthma should have to suffer. Anyone who is experiencing breathing problems or making compromises to live with their condition should attend a free screening and find out how to take control.”
During a screening, adults complete a 20-question Life Quality (LQ) Test developed by ACAAI for the program. Children under age 15 take a special test called the Kids’ Asthma Check that allows them to answer questions themselves about any breathing problems. Another version of the Check is available for parents of children up to 8 years of age to complete on their child’s behalf.
Participants also take a lung function test that involves blowing into a tube, and meet with an allergist to determine if they should seek a thorough examination and diagnosis.
For a list of asthma screening locations and dates or to take online versions of the LQ Test and Kids’ Asthma Check, visit the ACAAI Web site at Take Control: A Guide for People with Asthma also will be available online.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

RollCall Editorial urges investigation of Oak Lawn Trustee Jerry Hurckes

RollCall Newspaper, the newspaper of record covering Congress, called for an ethics investigation of Oak Lawn Trustee Jerry Hurckes who allegedly may have violated ethics rules regarding his role as a paid trustee and representative of Oak Lawn, and his role as paid chief of staff to Congressman Dan Lipinski who represents the 3rd District which includes Oak Lawn.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Arab fanatics come out swinging against my moderation

Sousan Hammad described herself to me as a Palestinian from Ramallah who can't decide if she wants to be a journalist or a political activist during an "interview" prior to my comedy performance at the World Affairs Council at Houston's Hobby Center March 25. I asked her if she was a Christian and she responded that she was "non-religious."

Then she went into her attack, criticizing me for performing with Israelis and denouncing my comedy before she even had a chance to see the show.

Hammad is the opinion page editor at the University of Houston's student newspaper "The Daily Cougar."

She then did a review of the show. And after reading it, I realized she decided to forgo journalism and become an activist before graduation.

I don't mind the criticism, especially from extremists who hate those like me who embrace peace based on compromise, denounce Hamas terrorism and suicide bombing as immoral, and who reject the ridiculous notion that the Holocaust did not exist. In fact, when the criticism is clever, talented and creative, I admire it. But Sousan doesn't have the talent to be creative, or clever. People who hate rarely do. So before the interview began, Sousan and I were not on good terms.

But what I do mind are her factual errors -- intentional, apparently.

She makes the false claim that I support the occupation of the Palestinians. Only a moron would say that. I didn't. She did. Of the fact that five Arab American groups cancelled my pre-bookings in early 2007, it was because I reject the Arab taboo on normalization, which she mischaracterizes as embracing the occupation. Dumb, but it feeds the haters out there.

She says that I won't go to Ramallah to perform because the Palestinians will shoot me. What I said was WE WANT TO GO TO RAMALLAH and to BETHLEHEM to perform comedy but there are hurdles that prevent Israelis from performing there and because the Palestinian groups said they could not guarantee security for the Israelis.

Sousan then rewrote the feature and changed more of the quotes and had it published on the "Electronic Intifada," the web site of the fanatics who embraced people like George Habash, the extremist who embraced violence and who fought for control of the Palestinian revolution with Yasir Arafat. Habash has always been hailed as a "Christian" but who openly denounced and rejected religion. He was a Marxist-Leninist, not a Christian.

When I look in Sousan's face, I recognize immediately why Palestinians have lost in their effort to establish a Palestinian State. So consumed with hatred, some Palestinians like Sousan live in a self-inflicted world of blind rage where they find it okay to murder innocent little Israeli children but only speak out against the killing of Palestinian children. When I told her I embrace one principle that I apply to all killings -- whether they are by Israeli occupation soldiers murdering Palestinian civilians, or Palestinian Hamas terrorists murdering Israeli civilians, I denounce them both -- she laughed saying I was "naive."

What I am confident of is that in her vicious hatred and intentionally distorted reporting, people like Sousan are the reasons why palestinians are this year commemorating the 60th anniversary of the Nakba.

Here's the version that appeared in the Electronic Intifada, the web site of the advocates of the "One State Solution," a failed and impossible dream promoted by extremist hatred not an embrace of living together. I'm glad the hatred has finally come out from under the rock of Palestinian extremism and is now in the public arena.

Ray Hanania

Here's my letter sent to The Daily Cougar:

Sousan Hammd's "review" of the Israeli-Palestinian Comedy Tour was filled with factual errors, distortions of what I said, and a clear effort to advance her own agenda.

I don't mind criticism when it is clever, creative and accurate, but when it completely distorts my views (saying I wouldn't perform in Ramallah because I was afraid Palestinians would shoot me is ridiculous since my cousins and many relatives live there, is pathetic on her part). And to say that I support the Israeli Occupation of the West Bank is also an outright lie. Clearly she hates me because I won't kill Jews, I oppose Hamas terrorism, denounce suicide bombings, criticize both the killing of Palestinian and Israeli civilians, and openly embrace peace based on two-states and compromise, things that clearly pose a problem for her.

Sousan told me she couldn't decide whether to pursue journalism or political activism. I think her ridiculous and inaccurate political attack against me and the Israeli-Palestinian Comedy Tour demonstrates that she has already made a choice.

Ray Hanania

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Hurckes continues to get heat on duel role in Washington and Oak Lawn

Capitol Fax picked up on the story about Oak Lawn Trustee and Congressman Dan Lipinski's "Chief of Staff" playing duel roles and claiming he brings the benefits to Oak Lawn ... here's the link:

Also, RollCall Newspaper has issued an editorial criticizing Hurckes role ...

The heat's on ...

Ray Hanania