Update: And, of course, it's even worse than that.
Here we have what ought to be the front page headline in
27. New Orleans: Dwayne Bowe, WR - LSU
The Saints have Jason David safely in the fold (as of Thursday) so a corner isn’t a glaring need. My picking a receiver might seem a strange selection because your initial thought is, “Didn’t they sign David Patten?”
Please. Patten is over 30, injured and even at his absolute apex was a third receiver at best. Remember, Devery Henderson will be a free agent after this season and it’s realistic to expect him to put up a 1,000-yard season. Then some team will throw him big time money. There is no way the Saints will be pay Henderson big time cash.
So Bowe solves the third receiver problem this year and he’ll be a starter in 2008 when Henderson gets $35 million from some team to be a number one receiver.
Dwayne Bowe, WR, LSU
John Clayton, ESPN.com senior NFL writer: With the addition of cornerback Jason David from the Colts, the Saints can take the best available player. They lost Joe Horn this offseason and Bowe is also a local star coming from LSU.
Black residents encountered discrimination nearly six times out of 10 when apartment hunting in the New Orleans area post-Katrina, according to a new study released Tuesday by a local civil rights group.
The Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center sent white and black testers to check out advertised rentals in four parishes between September 2006 and April 2007. The study found disparities in how landlords treat prospective tenants based on skin color.
In nearly 58 percent of searches throughout a four-parish area, black prospective renters were stonewalled while white applicants were welcomed, said James Perry, executive director of the housing group.
I love New Orleans music... but I absolutely hate Jazzfest. Nothing could be more un-New Orleans than a confined no reentry venue where admission is an outrageous $40.00 per day.. where you're not allowed to bring your own liquor... where the food is good but ridiculously priced... where the crowd is mostly white, largely upper class, professional, out-of-town, aging boomer-fallen hippies, who view their participation in this rip-off as a means to purchase some degree of "authenticity". In other words.. it's an annual gathering of Chris Roses from around America.
BATON ROUGE -- A consultant hired by Gov. Kathleen Blanco's administration recommended Friday that the state build a new $1.2 billion LSU public hospital in New Orleans to replace the charity hospital flooded by Hurricane Katrina.
NEW YORK A new survey of 1,502 adults released Sunday by Pew Research Center for the People & the Press found that despite the mass appeal of the Internet and cable news since a previous poll in 1989, Americans' knowledge of national affairs has slipped a little. For example, only 69% know that Dick Cheney is vice president, while 74% could identify Dan Quayle in that post in 1989.
Other details are equally eye-opening. Pew judged the levels of knowledgeability (correct answers) among those surveyed and found that those who scored the highest were regular watchers of Comedy Central's The Daily Show and Colbert Report. They tied with regular readers of major newspapers in the top spot -- with 54% of them getting 2 out of 3 questions correct. Watchers of the Lehrer News Hour on PBS followed just behind.
Foti punts to courts
State Attorney General Charles Foti says the issue of whether former U.S. Sen. John Breaux is a Louisiana "citizen," eligible to run for governor, should be decided by the courts.
Who was it who supposedly kept those phantom bodies "on the books"? The same "they" that Nagin likes to reference when he speaks to audiences far from New Orleans, or a different set of alleged perpetrators? And, assuming the closely monitored Census Bureau would have to be in on the fix, what interest would the federal government have in helping New Orleans hold on to "certain benefits," at the expense of actual voters?
Blakely's apology did not reference this part of his comments. And that's a shame.
Inaccurate statements to far-flung audiences who have no way of knowing the facts are more harmful than simple mistakes because they exacerbate the stereotype that New Orleans officials are always gaming the system.
Blakely expects to be out of here next year, and even now, he's traveling frequently and juggling obligations unrelated to his job as head of New Orleans' recovery. But as long as he's involved, everything he says reflects on the city, even -- no, especially -- if he's on one of his many trips away.
In a speech in Sydney, Blakely told the audience that by the time he was hired, residents were literally starved for leadership and direction. That's true, which means an awful lot of people see him as the last best hope for getting it right.
That means coming up with a workable plan, which he's hopefully done.
It also means not doing anything to undermine confidence in the city's prospects, among residents or among outsiders who are being called upon to help.
As a short-timer, Blakely's future may not depend on it. But the future of the people he's speaking for just might.
"Nagin comes out of the business community and thinks the private sector has the keys to the kingdom and capacity for the solution," Dr. Rudy Lombard, an urban planner who got his start as a movement activist in Algiers, told Gambit Weekly in a telephone interview from Chicago. "Nagin does not have an accurate perspective. ... The city's needs overwhelm the resources of government.
"Blacks are caught up in the symbolism of having an African American occupy the mayor's office when the resources have eroded," explains Lombard. "They believe that having a black mayor in office is absolutely essential. The circumstances in which the black community finds itself overwhelm the power available to them to control local issues. Urban mayors are less and less powerful because the funds are controlled by the state and federal government."
A partner in a "small investment management company," Lombard visits New Orleans every few weeks.
"I think Nagin is boxed in," Lombard continues. "He doesn't have the kind of personality which can transcend the problems and be effective as mayor of the city. There will be a growing dissatisfaction with politicians in New Orleans. They're going to lose support and the respect of the rank and file because they will not produce the results that are needed. The federal and state government will continue to be callous toward the needs of the poor. The funding streams are just not there."
Nagin, who contributed $1,000 to George W. Bush in 2000, assumed control of a city starved of resources it once had because of ideologues like Bush. How could any mayor bring prosperity to a city with a 30 percent underclass without federal help? Then came Katrina, which sent half of the population into exile, particularly the poor. Nagin assumed the city would receive a huge federal windfall via the Road Home program. As Road Home stalled, Nagin had little in the way of other sources to kick-start the city's recovery.
Nagin touted a "market-driven" recovery, encouraging neighborhoods to work with the City Planning Commission on proposals for redevelopment. The subtle message was that this is no longer a city for poor folk. Nevertheless, poor people continued to return, finding conditions more desperate than before.
Newcomers, pioneers willing to put up with the city’s present difficulties, could be the salvation of New Orleans and its future, Dr. Blakely suggested. New Orleans now is “a third-world country,” he said.
“If we get some people here, those 100 million new Americans, they’re going to come here without the same attitudes of the locals,” he said. “I think, if we create the right signals, they’re going to come here, and they’re going to say, ‘Who are these buffoons?’ I’m meeting some who are moving here, and they don’t have time for this stuff.”
Even in the post-9/11 environment, little lies never went away. In particular, promoting little lies seems to have been one of the main things U.S. attorneys, as loyal Bushies, were expected to do. For example, David Iglesias, the U.S. Attorney in New Mexico, appears to have been fired because he wouldn’t bring unwarranted charges of voter fraud.
There’s a lot of talk now about a case in Wisconsin, where the Bush-appointed U.S. attorney prosecuted the state’s purchasing supervisor over charges that a court recently dismissed after just 26 minutes of oral testimony, with one judge calling the evidence “beyond thin.” But by then the accusations had done their job: the unjustly accused official had served almost four months in prison, and the case figured prominently in attack ads alleging corruption in the Democratic governor’s administration.
...any president is not only going to have to deal with this disaster in Iraq, but also a federal government which has been staffed from top to bottom with career ideological Bushies who will fully understand that their job in a Democratic administration is to take it down.
Thank you, Lord, for jelly beans.
They remind me of your love.
SPECKLED represents the effects of sin
Separating me from you above.
RED is for the blood you shed
A sacrifice only you could pay.
WHITE represents the cleansing of my soul
As you wash my sins away
YELLOW represents heaven above,
A long awaited place!
GREEN is for the growth that I must do
As I study your Word
to gain closeness to you.
Police cut fee for second line parade club, but lawsuit goes on
A temporary legal settlement will allow one of New Orleans' unique neighborhood "second line" parades to march on Easter Sunday, after the city agreed to sharply reduce a security fee.
But Wednesday's settlement doesn't end a lawsuit between the city's predominantly black "social aid and pleasure clubs" and the police, who started charging the higher fees last year for the colorful jazz-and-parosol processions. The parade groups say the higher fees are discriminatory and threaten to tax them out of existence.
Fees went up from about $1,200 to $3,700 and higher after gunfire marred at least two of the parades last year -- part of a burgeoning crime problem that accompanied the city's repopulation following Hurricane Katrina. One person was killed in one of the shootings.
Wednesday's agreement will allow the Pigeon Town Steppers Social Aid and Pleasure Club to parade on Sunday. Police had planned to charge the group $7,500, but the city agreed to reduce the fee to $2,413, according to an attorney for the group.
"It might as well have been $75 million," said Carol Kolinchak, an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union, which is backing the parade groups' lawsuit.
City attorney Joe DiRosa said the fee is based solely on an evaluation of what is needed to assure public safety. The reduction for the Pigeon Town club came after police re-evaluated overtime and personnel needs for the parade, he said.
At a downtown protest Wednesday morning, Tamara Jackson, president of the New Orleans Social and Pleasure Club Task Force, said the higher fees are discriminatory because the overwhelming majority of parade participants are black.
"We're the only culture that is being taxed out of existence and we're one of the oldest cultures that exist in this city," Jackson said.
At a small downtown park near the federal courthouse, a few dozen marchers from different parade groups chanted, "Respect, peace, no increase," and carried picket signs accusing police of a double standard. The demonstration was cut short by a morning rain storm.
DiRosa's denied any notion that the city is trying to drive second lines out."Why would we do that?" he asked. "Do you know we conduct over 450 parades in this city a year? We're not trying to eliminate any parades."
DiRosa acknowledged that second lines are different from the lavish, highly organized parades of the city's Carnival season, put on by well-heeled private groups. For instance, the large parades travel on major thoroughfares and have barricades separating participants form observers. In second lines, observers often join in the parades, which take place on narrower streets in various neighborhoods.
The parade clubs continue to seek a preliminary injunction in federal court that would stop enforcement of the higher fees. A hearing is set for April 25.
"It's in everybody's best interest that this be resolved in a way that protects and preserves the culture of New Orleans," Kolinchak said.
"In my opinion -- no -- he's not, but I'm not going to get involved in court challenges. I'm no attorney, and I would rather tell people why Bobby Jindal is the best candidate for governor,"
In short: 300's depiction of the battle of Thermopylae is not merely inaccurate, as any film adaptation of a graphic novel has the perfect right to be. It's what the Iranians say it is: racist and insulting. It pits the glorious Greeks with whom the audience must sympathize against a "mystical" and "tyrannical" culture posing an imminent existential threat. It is, de facto, an anti-Persian/anti-Iranian propaganda film, and should be rated appropriately: not just R (for racist) but X---for extremely stupid and vicious and dangerously ill-timed.
Based on a graphic novel by Frank Miller, the movie is a porno-military curiosity—a muscle-magazine fantasy crossed with a video game and an Army recruiting film.
What isn’t up for debate is the film’s politics. The only times the Persian army doesn’t look like a gay-pride parade in hell, it looks like a crowd of madly chanting Islamic militants. And if the Spartan king has to break the Spartan law to defend Spartan freedoms? Well, sometimes a king’s gotta do what a king’s gotta do. Because, as the queen of Sparta points out, freedom isn’t free. And, yes, she uses exactly those words. George Bush is going to blow a load in his pants when he sees this movie.
One of the city's premier spring festivals will have a noticeably cleaner staging ground this year.
Those who gathered Monday for the announcement of the 24th annual French Quarter Festival said the tidiness of the Quarter, thanks to a new trash company hired by the city, is unprecedented and could add to the celebration's lure.
"I walk down here a lot and I talk to people and it seems as though the cleanliness of the French Quarter is becoming a tourist attraction in itself," Mayor Ray Nagin said.
Given that the changes that affected New Orleans happened many months ago, we were a bit surprised by some of these recent comments. Nevertheless, we recognize the increasingly important role that imagery is coming to play in the public discourse, and so we're happy to say that we have been able to expedite the processing of recent (2006) aerial photography for the Gulf Coast area (already in process for an upcoming release) that is equal in resolution to the data it is replacing. That new data was published in Google Earth and Google Maps on Sunday evening.