Friday, October 07, 2005

Fubar, FEMAr... same diff 

Craig gets "stuck in the middle" being all honest and neither poor nor rich and such...

Not that there's any bright side to Craig's (all too common) plight, I will mention that yesterday I heard on 870am that Mike "horse whisperer" Brown's FEMA replacement, Mistah Duct Tape, did say he wanted to revisit a large portion of the no-bid contracts that have already been handed out, and have them bid out competitively. That would be welcome.

There was an extremely lively "Back to Business" event at the Sheraton yesterday, which I missed (to my chagrin). But some of it was played over the radio, and Nagin gave a helluva good speech. He railed on the economic predation taking place but also painted a hopeful-- even exciting-- picture about the future of New Orleans. There were several oratorical flourishes, and I'm pretty sure he was doing it with only a few notes, or perhaps entirely off the kuff. Later on, when they handed the mic over to the public, holy shitzky there was some frustration boiling over!-- Mostly at the carpetbagging and the lack of help from the feds. It sounded intense. Sabudowsky from made a very emotional plea for help, as well. I think and the B.R. Advocate both had front page articles on these exchanges with descriptive quotes. Go there for more detail (sorry no links).

By the way, it seems that one of the things that won't be postponed are the New Orleans Municipal elections in February. This is a huge disadvantage for potential mayoral (or other) candidates, as money and voters are few and far between in New Orleans. I'll have more (perhaps much more) to say about this at another time.

So much of the criticism in the wake of Katrina has been directed at Nagin, even, as I've noted, by sites who's apparent focus was the removal of Blanco from office. I must say that I'm extremely anxious to see who these "impeachers" and "recallers" throughout the state will decide to support for mayor of New Orleans. Who will they line up behind? Clearly, they'll have to come down somewhere on the issue. If all these critics merely say, "Well, anyone would be better than Nagin, right?" they immediately identify themselves as utterly clueless nitwits concerning New Orleans politics. It could have been A WHOLE LOT worse than Nagin-- in fact, it has been a helluva lot worse than Nagin-- therefore, it is incumbent upon critics to say who they will support in the upcoming election. Since they are allegedly interested in New Orleans' gubmint, they should endorse someone who is preferable to Nagin. This would help their cause, by making the mayoral elections a statewide issue, and the challengers would benefit from the attention. (If Nagin's critics stay mum on the race, all their previous attacks lose much of their force. It would seem like they just want to complain rather than affect change.)

I'll admit, I'm waiting for one name in particular to come up amongst these advocates, because my insider friends know how utterly corrupt this potential candidate is (in all the worst "old school" ways). If Blanco and Nagin's impeachers/recallers/opponents end up supporting who I have in mind... well, that will tell us a lot about their motives, won't it?

My position is that Mayor Ray Nagin, despite his faults, is exponentially preferable to his predecessor and was preferable to the alternatives four years ago. It's entirely likely that he will be preferable to any major candidate this time around as well.

C.B. Forgotston has said some ill-tempered things about the mayor of late, charging him with policies of racial discrimination against whites. I think Forgotston is angry and emotional about damage that his home/business may have suffered, so I'll give him a pass on his recent hysterical rants. I certainly know how he feels. (See the for the whole saga, which made it into the papers yesterday.)

But, if C.B. wants to continue making these bizarre charges against the mayor, perhaps he can answer the following query: why would Nagin wish to alienate his (white) base prior to an election?
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The Blame Game 

Now you can buy it! Although you can't win the blame game, playing it will help Katrina victims. Read all about it here.

What should the sequel be?
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Thursday, October 06, 2005

How did I miss this one? 

Kids, this is what political gold looks like. Below is a statement Grover Norquist made in an interview with El Mundo. The question is something like "Is this the end for the Democrats?" (I don't know Spanish, but if someone decides to check the translation, please tell me if it isn't 100% accurate.) Here's Grover's reply:

Yes, because in addition their demographic base is shrinking. Each year, 2 million people who fought in the Second World War and lived through the Great Depression die. This generation has been an exeception in American history, because it has defended anti-American policies. They voted for the creation of the welfare state and obligatory military service. They are the base of the Democratic Party. And they are dying. And, at the same time, all the time more Americans have stocks. That makes them defend the interests of business, because it is their own interest. Because of that, it's impossible to bring to the fore policies of social hate, of class warfare.

Over their Amerika-hating lifetimes, those "Greatest Generation" Democrats have seen stocks perform enormously better during Democratic administrations versus Republican ones. On average it's about 42% better on an annual basis! (And recent history suggests that long term trend is in no danger of a reversal.)

Big H/T to Rujax at Reload.
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Storms blow through swamp cities 

There's a lot of guys in orange jumpsuits in New Orleans, emerging from old, stately mansions, covered in toxic filth.

Most of these guys are in good physical shape, which is preferable, because orange is not very "slimming".

I'm just saying.

Update: Norb plays Bingo.
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Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Didja know? 

Duct tape is not only useful in protecting oneself against bio-chem attacks from the evildoers, but it can also secure a rancid refrigerator that you haul out to the edge of your street (or over to the neutral ground if possible).
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Fade to Black Mold 

Met with the insurance appraisers today and it looks like our house is totalled, finished, kaput. We'll have to demolish it and build a new one.

That's pisser, but these guys played it straight with me, and were very candid and helpful. I greatly appreciated that, because, tromping around in house vomit, the last thing you want is some yahoo trying to play games with your coverage.

So, the oyster clan will get a new shell... someday.
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Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Police Get Ready 

Schroeder has an excellent, informed and personal take on Eddie Compass' departure/removal from the NOPD.

I like his picks for replacements, too.
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Digby sees a LBJ/Bush parallel 

Therefore, I shall link to it (while adding that Abe Fortas was brilliant).

Also, Michael alerts us to a relevant New yorker piece on Johnson's response to Betsy.
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Too Tough to Die 

Gabba Gabba Hey!!

On my second trip to my moldy abode, I salvaged a few mementoes that survived the flood. Happily, one of them included my treasured Rocket to Russia album, autographed by Joey, Johnny, Dee Dee and Marky Ramone at Murmur Records in Orlando nearly twenty years ago. Somehow it was still in nearly pristine shape, even though the upper shelves in my closet had dumped all my valuable keepsakes into the sludge and muck that forms the floor of my house. (Suffice it to say that my beloved Koufax, [Frankie] Robinson and Ralph Kiner baseball cards are now in less than "mint" condition.)

Has it been too long since you last rock'n rolled with the Ramones?

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Sunday, October 02, 2005

Guns and Butter and Oil and Pigs and Troughs and... 

WAPO ed (via atrios):

The Heritage Foundation, which is usually respectful of Republican Party officeholders, recently noted that the party's ascendancy has coincided with an extraordinarily expensive Medicare prescription drug bill, the most costly farm bill in modern history, a 51 percent increase in spending on veterans and an increase in the annual number of pork projects from 6,000 in 2001 to 14,000 this year.
Who should be held responsible for runaway government spending? Mr. DeLay is certainly a good place to start. His governing principle was not to stand on principle but rather to rain taxpayers' money on every lobby that could return the favor with campaign contributions. But the biggest responsibility lies not with any member of the legislature but with Mr. Bush. Unlike senators and House members, the president represents the whole nation; he is supposed to defend the general interest against particularist claims. Moreover, he has the power to do so. If Congress serves up wasteful bills, the president can veto them.

Mr. Bush has been too cowardly to do that.... Mr. Bush's father had the courage to veto 44 bills in four years, and President Ronald Reagan once vetoed a transportation bill because it contained about 150 pork projects. But the [highway] bill that Mr. Bush just signed contained at least 6,000 pork projects.
But while Mr. Bush cares fervently, and scandalously, about the imperative of keeping inhumane practices legal, he does not care as much about waste of taxpayers' money. This is why he has not made vigorous use of his veto to restrain the growth of pork.

Plainly, our GOP-controlled government borrows from the future to increase wasteful spending today; much more than the Dems ever did. Anyone wanna disagree with that?
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