Friday, July 16, 2004

C'mon Hoss, it's like you were asking for it.  

   

Available at Metro Three Posted by Hello

 
Having schooled there, I'll credit Tejas for its beer, brazen blondes, and capital.  But that doesn't make up for Dubya, Houston, and the instinct for secession.  So I like to regularly cut Texans  down to size,  especially since they often dismiss New Orleans, a city which boasts a cultural source for its pride.   The shirt is a best seller at a shop that happily celebrates this city's collection of neighborhoods. 
 
From Da Paper:
 

Like few other cities in the country, New Orleans protects its cultural heritage with an almost religious fervor. Lori and Starbuck Laney were counting on that when they started making T-shirts bearing neighborhood names such as Bywater, Uptown, Mid City, Marigny and Irish Channel. Positive reaction to the shirts was so strong, it prompted them to open their own store, Metro Three, three months ago.
 
(snip)
 
In an effort to reinforce city pride, Mayor Ray Nagin's Care Again campaign has also teed off. The city's foray into fashion includes a women's baby doll T-shirt with Desire spelled out in street tiles and a men's T-shirt that reads 'I Care,' in the same motif. Both are priced at $12 and can be purchased via the city's Web site, www.cityofno.com
  




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Could a "Nooner" start a Civil War? 

Recent graduate Jenna Bush already has a new teaching job,
 perhaps at the Harlem Day Charter School in New York City.
 
  ...
 
Please, Slick,  maintain discipline for the good of the Union.


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Thursday, July 15, 2004

For those who have eyes to see... 

From the Times-Picayune:



The [gay marriage amendment] issue got personal in the Louisiana delegation.

Rep. David Vitter, R-Metairie, who is running for the Senate seat being vacated by Breaux, touched off the battle when his campaign issued a statement saying he was outraged by the votes of Louisiana's senators.

"The Hollywood left is redefining the most basic institution in human history and our two U.S. senators won't do anything about it," Vitter said.

Breaux responded with an angry statement through his spokesman. "Politicians should be more worried about their own marriages than about criticizing how other politicians vote on marriage," Breaux said.

Breaux appeared to be alluding to Vitter's decision last year not to run for governor. Vitter said then that he wanted to spend more time with his family and revealed that he and his wife, Wendy, were seeing a marriage counselor. (oy's emphasis)

 

I will only note the following dots:

  • Breaux is supporting Senate candidate Chris John (D).
  • Ricky reports that eliminating "cronyism and corruption" is a central Vitter campaign plank.
  • "Appearances" can be deceiving.

Sorry-- right now I can only be vague and cryptic on this one.


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"One day New Orleans will get good government-- and they're not gonna like it." 

True, major surgeries aren't pain-free. But, we've made an appointment:

Two months before Orleans Parish School Board elections, a new poll shows all seven incumbents receiving less than 40 percent support from voters in their districts who were asked if the board members should be re-elected.

The poll also found that in five of the seven districts, a majority of voters support the incumbent's removal. (T-P)

The poll revealed nothing good for the School Board, except that some of them don't have opponents. Brooks-Simms in the 4th district is probably the worst of the lot (only 16% support her reelection), yet she doesn't have a single challenger! Algiers Point, French Quarter, CBD.... c'mon good people!

I believe the support for Mayor Nagin and Superintendant Amato signals the beginning of the end of New Orleans' systemically corrupt governance. Fresh faces on the Orleans Parish School Board would be another major step.

---
The title quote is courtesy of an astute caller on Andre Trevigne's show on the big 870am, heard in 40 states. Back in the day, when I worked for Walker Acura/Volkswagen, I sold her a car. I'm a fan.
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Hurry and cancel the MLK memorial in D.C.! 

Precious space must be reserved, for today it was announced that King's prophesy has been made flesh:

Through his education policies alone, President Bush has done more for the African-American community than any previous president, including the so-called "first black president", Bill Clinton.
So sayeth Education Secretary Rod Paige in today's WSJ (sub req).

Abraham Lincoln must be crying tears of joy, that all Presidential efforts have finally culminated into the unvarnished blessing that is W's NCLB. And for this program to have such an unfraudulent overseer ... well, let's all hold hands and sing 43 "Hosannahs".
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Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Almost several people have asked, why "oyster"? 

Because oysters are not only delicious to slurp down (with sauce and 'radish), but they also have the ability to willfully change their sex throughout their lives. Similarly, I decided on a non gender-specific moniker in case I later chose a different path. Wouldn't want to confuse the loyal readers.


Currently, I'm male, but I realize that it's important to preserve one's options.


And now I shall exercise the option of whipping out my 1986 Casio mini-keyboard, and singing (with a brand new intensity):

...
Feeling alone
the army's up the rode
salvation a la mode and
a cup of tea.
Aqualung my friend
don't start away uneasy
you poor old sod, you see, it's only me.

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Just a good ole boy... we won't have to kick around anymore 

Compared to most, I'm rather serene about Kerry's prospects in November, and will try to take the inevitable campaign fear-mongering in stride. But, perhaps I should be anxious about the election aftermath in one respect: political blog material. Imagine Kerry wins, and a period of geopolitical calm follows. Then consider this hypothetical post about the first daughters:


According to an interview in the August Vogue the Bush twins reveal their love of "soy lattes and sushi." (Closet Deaniacs!) Then Jenna describes bringing boyfriends home to dad: "He's very funny with boyfriends... He's the joking-around-to-the-point-where-he-scares-the-heck-out-of-them type."

Let me imagine the scene.... Ok, I got it:

"Nice to meet you there, Kenneth. Jenna's told me a lot about you."

"Pleased to meet you, Mr. President."

"Say there, Kenny-boy, see that box by the wall?

"Yes"

"How 'bout for fun we see how long you can stand on it-- arms akimbo."

(A lengthy, awkward pause follows.)

"Uh, sir, I don't know wha-"

"Naw! I'm just jokin' with ya!!" (W breaks into a bout of Roscoe P. Coltrane giggling.) "Ha! A-gyoo-gyoo-gyoo...."

Then:

"Kenny, wait til we get around the dinner table, where, after grace, you'll get to take my patented 'Boyfriend Test'. I promise it'll be a blast! Hee hee! You'll love it! Aggeh,geh, ah-gyoo-gyoo-gyoo..."

"Da-ad, please don't be gross."

See, once Bush returns to Crawford, mildly humorous scenes like these will quickly seem dated and dull. (Even right now they're not spectacular, but since YRHT already jumped the shark, I have to use words like "akimbo" to get chuckles.)

---
Eschaton has a non-fiction account.
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Aww, did someone have a case of the Mondays? 

He shoots a Pennsylvanian the bird (pity that photo didn't turn out.)


Visits the laboratory which helped discredit a central war argument.


A letter bribing Pakistan is revealed (not 100% authentic, but still...).


And then a staunch Republican "helps" defend his administration with the radioactive phrase:

Dick Cheney is not a crook.
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Tuesday, July 13, 2004

One lump, or two? 

The left, especially Josh Marshall, is getting hammered for supporting Joe Wilson (and outed CIA wife Plame) over the past year. There's plenty of pieces to this story that don't fit together neatly in my mind, but if the SSCI report is correct, serious crow must be eaten.


How much?


(Let's not forget about the latter-day Elliot Ness, though)

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Feeling exuberant? 

On today's RealMoney radio show, Jim Cramer reached a "sobering conclusion": the Bush team's stupidity, incompetence, and lack of talent and creativity are actively preventing the stock market from advancing. That is, the investor class is voting with their dollars, and the current mediocre market demonstrates "no confidence" in Bush, Snow, Evans...etc. Despite good earnings and low interest rates, Cramer says the market is floundering because of

the gradual realization that Bush is gonna go. He will be forced out in November and a new man will be president...

Wow. If that is anywhere close to accurate-- that the stock market is weary of administration Arbusto-- then the deal is truly done. All that's left is the paperwork. Ignore polls until after Labor day. For now, a flat or downward stock trend will tell you all you need to know.

Those who might slag on Cramer for his passionate showmanship on CNBC's Kudlow & Cramer, should remember his hedge fund averaged 24%-- after all fees!-- for fourteen straight years. Anyone with such a pedigree is worth a listen-- (use the RealMoney link, the show's first ten minutes contains the good stuff. Free subscription required.)
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Honky Butt 

Unsubtle Sandra "18 Wheeler" Hester, outpoken host of the popular "Hester Report" tv show, is campaigning for a School Board seat. As you may know, each week Hester offers scathing criticisms of the horrendous New Orleans public school system and its corrupt governance. She is (rightfully) disgusted, angry, and desirous of radical change. Oftentimes, during her cable access report she wears camoflauge fatigues, with controversial background graphics framing her tirades.

Apparently while I was bailing water a few weeks back, Hester went overboard (again) on her show. The Gambit explains:

...Hester later refused comment when asked to respond to [school board member] Fahrenholtz's complaint that she repeatedly referred to him as "Fahren-honkie" on a June 25 broadcast of The Hester Report. "I'm only going to talk about the issues," Hester told Gambit Weekly.

In the broadcast, Hester appears in front of a large mural of seven caricatured sets of buttocks, each one captioned with the surname of a School Board member. Hester also appears in front of a chalkboard that displays the message "Erase the Board" and the names of each incumbent. The surname of her announced opponent is spelled "Fahren-honkie."

I didn't know "honkie" still carried any sting. I thought it was a comedic 70's sitcom word. Anyways, for whatever reason, what I'm really curious about is if the buttocks were shown in a variety of corresponding pigments. If anyone saw it, let me know.

Quick shot at Tejas: Now, Houston schools are no worse than New Orleans, but they billed themselves as much, much better after Governor Bush and Superintendant Paige's "miracle" was performed. Mac-a-ronies has a good recent rundown on the Houston school fraud, where dropouts weren't counted so the statistics would look better. I wonder: when Education Secretary Paige speaks at the RNC convention, will talking heads mention that his greatest "achievement"-- as well as Gov. Bush's-- has been revealed to be an enronesque scam?
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Monday, July 12, 2004

"It is my intention ... to revitalize [New Orleans] with this product" 


Prefab shotgun Posted by Hello


Urban blight infects and degrades the entire city. Above is a picture of the first modular shotgun house from Hometime LLC. The designer believes such affordable housing is the key to quick redevelopment of the 10,000 blighted lots in New Orleans. His quote which titles this post was made in a June CityBusiness article:

(Nurhan) Gokturk is one of three partners in Hometime LLC a local company that sells prefabricated homes aimed at low-income residents. The company wants to target blighted and vacant lots for redevelopment for families that could not have been able to afford a new home. The houses, which sell for about $109,000 for a four bedroom and $119,000 for a duplex, are designed to look like traditional New Orleans shotgun homes.

(snip)

"Typically, a modular home is an off-the-shelf product," Gokturk says. "But nothing off the shelf looked anything like a New Orleans house and I needed it to look like a (local) home."


Living well in functioning, historic neighborhoods should become a central economic strategy for New Orleans. It so fully capitalizes on our inherent advantages that I'm willing to accept modular homes (shipped from Atlanta!) if it means the faster elimination of blighted eyesores.

---
Also, Saturday night I chatted with an architect whose firm designed the new hotel for Harrah's casino. He assured me the finished product would look very good-- with the first three stories having balconies and interesting details. Since this controversial project required the demolition of some old (but plain) buildings in the warehouse district, I'm happy to hear that it will look good.



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Sunday, July 11, 2004

Goop Will Fronting 

Liberals, don't mind the prospect of Bush's reelection. You see, we can trust some southern Dems and New England Republicans to prevent any undue furtherance of Karl Rove's radical agenda. George Will soothingly explains:
Under the new scorched-earth ethic of bitter partisanship in Washington, there is a supermajority requirement for significant action. Nothing as important as increasing the progressivity of the income tax or confirming important judges can happen without the support of 60 senators. Both candidates' promises, and their warnings about what the other fellow will do, should cause voters to ask the calming question: Will 60 senators support that?

Exhale and relax. Our intrepid Senate won't get played.

They're like duct-taped sheeting to Bush's toxic cloud.

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