People Get Ready

[ make levees, not war ]

Archive for April, 2006

Impeach Bush banner flies over Jazz Fest

Posted by schroeder915 on April 30, 2006

Amazing!

The story from a reliable source who attended Jazz Fest today was that a plane was flying over the fairgrounds pulling an “Impeach Bush” banner.

I’d like to shake the hand of the person who paid for that.

Hat tip: MM.

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Are you out of your mind?

Posted by schroeder915 on April 29, 2006

Lynne Jensen has a nice touch with this Eddie Bo story in The Times-Picayune:

“You’ve got to be out of your mind if you can’t feel it, because people around the world feel it,” Bo said.

“It’s hard to play with other musicians when you are away from home,” Bo said. “I mean they study; they have the art down to a science. But there’s something here you can’t explain. I’ve been trying to figure it out and I can’t. And people ask and I tell them as well as I can that there is something here in New Orleans that just flows.”

It’s that energy that will draw musicians chased away by Hurricane Katrina back to the city, Bo said.

“Wherever you go, you’re going to always want to come back to this feeling.”

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Desperate acts of violence

Posted by schroeder915 on April 29, 2006

“We are resorting to desperate acts of violence because we know the establishment of democracy in the United States will be a double defeat for us,” Bush said in his weekly radio address as he saluted the emergence of a permanent government.

Doh! My bad — I misquoted!

Well it’s just too bad for soldiers like Kenner native Lance Cpl. Derrick Cothran, whose funeral motorcade stretched for three miles, that Bush couldn’t have been honest about the sacrifice that would be required of Americans before he ordered an invasion of Iraq.

And it’s just too bad President Bush couldn’t be in New Orleans to honor him, and to answer for the misguided cause for which he died.

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Is satellite radio dying?

Posted by schroeder915 on April 28, 2006

Some people once feared that satellite radio might kill local radio (myself included).

It now seems that the appropriate question to ask is, is satellite radio dying?

What about market-segmented commercial radio operated by gimongous media corporations? Will it be able to survive in the future?

As a proponent of the more interesting results that free-form, locally-produced broadcast content can provide, I certainly hope so.

I mean, do you really need to hear “More Than a Feeling” with less feeling ten more times today? Or hear the latest fashion tips? Or find out what happened on Teen Idol last night?

The Washington Post is reporting that XM radio is bleeding revenues in order to sign up subscribers faster than its competitor, Sirius.

Sirius is playing the same game, gushing revenues to beat XM to new subscribers.

The investment is futile. Satellite as a medium for content is yesterday’s technology. Satellite might be used as a conduit in the future, but as a content provider, it’s a goner.

There is a technological transformation just over the horizon which will drive a stake into the heart of satellite radio, while simultaneously jolting commercial radio out of its bland, drive-you-into-the-grave format.

Wi-Fi is the future.

When you can get put a Wi-Fi radio in your car, and listen to any station in the country, there won’t be any logic to having a gazillion stations around the country, each formatted identically, playing the same songs, over and over ad nauseum, until your finger gets tired of hitting the scan button.

Instead, you’ll be able to listen to unique formats that come out of the far corners of the globe. And people in other parts of the world will be able to listen to unique stations like WWOZ and WTUL out of New Orleans.

What only non-commercial stations once provided, commercial stations will soon be providing as well. It’ll be like 70s FM again, when the spawning of new spectrum found DJ’s willing to experiment. Bands like Pink Floyd might never have found success back then without the advent of FM.

Wi-Fi is going to create a whole new ball game. It’ll be harder for stations to find a niche that pays, and the ones that don’t might not find the revenue to survive. But that will just open up frequencies for smaller operations, and possibly non-profit organizations that better serve their communities.

The future sounds great, and I just can’t wait!

Now, if we could only beat back the cable company monopolies that are fighting public access wi-fi.

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Make Levees, Not War Day

Posted by schroeder915 on April 28, 2006

Via New Orleans Network:

New Orleans Our Hometown.org (NOOHT.org) is encouraging all New Orleanians and lovers of New Orleans to wear a “Make Levees, Not War” T-shirt to Jazz Fest, work, or just around town on Friday April 28, 2006.

On that Friday, the first of Jazz Fest, we will have a high concentration of visitors. What a perfect time to send the message that we need better levee protection. Just imagine the impact it would make if thousands of people were sporting the same message.

Show your solidarity New Orleans. Either paint your own shirt or purchase one at Metro Three, 2032 Magazine, 558-0212 or LeMieux Galleries, 200 Metairie Road location, 837-4044.

This is not an endorsement – you can get your “Make Levees, Not War” T-shirt, and other thoughtful T-shirts, at other shops as well. Furthermore, I’d encourage locals (and locals lovers) going to Jazz Fest to be ambassadors of the city by wearing a New Orleans-themed shirt through the entire festival.

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What “moral authority”?

Posted by schroeder915 on April 28, 2006

On the watered-down ethics bill passed by the Republican-ruled House of Representatives, Rep. Christopher Shays (R-Conn.) said, “We’re losing our moral authority to lead this place.”

No Chris, you never had moral authority. You were given the privilege of serving the American people by winning a civil election.

Your job is to make laws, and enforce laws, that protect Americans from being ravaged by the powerful.

Your job is to answer to the needs of hard-freakin’ working Americans who are being screwed by corporations lining the pockets of the criminals currently running the White House and Congress.

Yours is a civic duty. Leave your morals and your authority in your church where they belong.

Anyway, did you really want to argue that the Republican leadership is moral? Now that’s a good one! I can’t wait to hear the comedy show monologues!

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What “moral authority”?

Posted by schroeder915 on April 28, 2006

On the watered-down ethics bill passed by the Republican-ruled House of Representatives, Rep. Christopher Shays (R-Conn.) said, “We’re losing our moral authority to lead this place.”

No Chris, you never had moral authority. You were given the privilege of serving the American people by winning a civil election.

Your job is to make laws, and enforce laws, that protect Americans from being ravaged by the powerful.

Your job is to answer to the needs of hard-freakin’ working Americans who are being screwed by corporations lining the pockets of the criminals currently running the White House and Congress.

Yours is a civic duty. Leave your morals and your authority in your church where they belong.

Anyway, did you really want to argue that the Republican leadership is moral? Now that’s a good one! I can’t wait to hear the comedy show monologues!

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News flash: Chickenboy picks up a hammer

Posted by schroeder915 on April 27, 2006


Photo credit: REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque, posted on Yahoo.

It’s just shy of eight months since Hurricane Katrina blew the levees wide open and flooded New Orleans. If it had been Al Qaeda, President Bush’s opportunistic cabal of image-handlers would have made him stand on top of the rubble of a devastated house with a bullhorn the very next day to proclaim that we would honor those who died, and those whose homes were destroyed, by rebuilding the city, by rebuilding the levees to withstand anything nature could throw at them, and by rebuilding Louisiana’s dying coastal marshes.

I sound like a broken record according to one recent comment:

it is so bad why don’t you get the hell out. All i think your doing is trying to get sympathy for the hurricane just like everyone else. … If you know that the Bush administration sucks then you could have expected something like that so you could also expect to have to do something for yourselves in the way of help. So really…quit bitching about it and as much as i hate to quote a blathering idiot, “get off your asses and do something.”

I wish I could do something about it, but unfortunately, the gubmint takes all my money in taxes and sends it to Iraq.

I wish I could do something about it, but unfortunately, fools like you voted for an idiot to run the country.

I wish I could do something about it, but unfortunately, as a nation, we expect our government to serve us, not f*ck us over.

I’m not complaining for myself. I made out okay in the hurricane. I’m complaining for the benefit of over 200,000 other New Orleanians who haven’t been able to return to their homes because the White House and Congress haven’t made it a priority.

Hurricane season is right around the corner, but the levees still won’t be ready, the pumping stations are still broken, people who are unemployed still find it difficult to get work in the rebuilding effort because contractors are getting away with hiring illegal immigrants (don’t expect any I.C.E. enforcement against corporate lawbreakers here!), we still can’t get a commitment from boneless chickenhawk Bush to build a state-of-the-art Category 5 storm protection system like the Netherlands has, and we still can’t get a commitment from him to restore Louisiana’s coast.

On the bright side, it’s true that every time Bush comes to New Orleans, he explores the devastation a little more. I hope he keeps coming back. Hell, as much as I hate the guy, I wish I really could cheer for him every time he comes to New Orleans. I would too.

Imagine the guy standing on a levee waving a huge New Orleans fleur-de-lis flag! That’s what we need to see. That would inspire the nation. A challenge issued to Congress and to Americans to build with confidence a flood protection system that is the envy of the world would raise the stature of America. That’s leadership!

Instead, where is the courage? Where is the understanding?

What’s to celebrate about Bush’s visit to New Orleans today?

He actually got out of the French Quarter, got off of St. Charles Avenue, and toured a flood-damaged home! Then, he used the occasion to underscore the need for more funding — piecemeal, but as I said, maybe there’s hope … certainly not unless we complain!
After touring the ravaged home of Ethel Williams in the Upper 9th Ward, President Bush called upon Congress to make sure a $4.2 billion request to help homeowners rebuild and another $2.2 billion request to elevate and strengthen levees are “kept intact for the people of Louisiana.”

He recognized the vital importance of volunteers:

Bush placed his arm around Williams, who evacuated to Texas after Hurricane Katrina, and told reporters that the metro area still needs another 2,500 volunteers to help rebuild.

“If you are interested in helping the victims of Katrina, if you want to help them get back on their feet, come on down to New Orleans,” Bush said. “It’s a chance to give something back to your country.”

He recognized the suffering of someone who was displaced (but failed to acknowledge those who remain displaced):

In a light moment, Bush, who formerly served as governor of Texas, joked with Williams: “She’s made it clear she’s glad to be out of Texas and back home.”

He recognized, obliquely, the importance of New Orleans’ diverse communities, and actually picked up a hammer for the cameras:

After leaving Williams’ home, Bush stopped at the future site of Habitat for Humanity’s Musicians’ Village on North Roman Street. The non-profit has plans to build 74 single-family homes on an 8-acre tract near Bunny Friend Playground, as well as seven two-family homes for older musicians and a music center, which might be named after Ellis Marsalis.

The plans also call for building at least 150 other homes nearby.

There, Bush, assisted by Gov. Kathleen Blanco, Mayor Ray Nagin and Congressman William Jefferson, raised roof beams for a single-story house currently under construction. Bush and Nagin then climbed on step ladders and drove nails into the house’s wooden frame.

Yeah chickenboy, keep it up. You might even start to turn the corner on your abysmal popularity … uh, except that Iraq war sure is a problem … and then there’s the deficit and national debt that you’re passing on to future generations … and your friends in the oil business who are making billions on the backs of hard-working Americans … and your horrendous handling of the Iran problem … your refusal to deal with global warming … your lying, cheating, and stealing while robbing Americans of their liberties … and on and on.

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Screwing the American dream

Posted by schroeder915 on April 25, 2006

Like the “Mission Accomplished” banner, Americans should by now know that the more ostentatious the banner, the bigger the lie.

Bush’s approval rating continues to spiral downward. He has only a 32 percent approval rating, and 6 out of every 10 Americans say they disapprove of Bush.

The fuhrer decider.

Meanwhile, an Illinois state legislator is acting on that discontent, by trying to initiate a procedure that it hopes will lead to Bush’s impeachment (edited for clarity):

State Rep. Karen Yarbrough (D-Maywood) has sponsored a resolution calling on the General Assembly to submit charges to the U.S. House so its lawmakers could begin impeachment proceedings [on the president emperor for lying, cheating, stealing, murder, incompetence, and negligence].

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Primary election analysis

Posted by schroeder915 on April 24, 2006

Once again, I salute Dan Swenson (assisted here by Matt Scallan) for a fine map. Actually, I used to do exactly this kind of work in another life, so I can say that while the data is not that remarkable (although it’s remarkable that it’s available from the Louisiana Secretary of State so quickly), the presentation is very nicely done.

Nagin is doomed. The anti-Nagin vote was more than 70 percent.

The only caveat to that prediction is turnout. I was most astounded by the extremely low turnout for this race. It may suprise outsiders who cling to unflattering stereotypes of New Orleans, blacks and whites in New Orleans tend to vote at much higher rates than other parts of the country — off the top of my head, typically more than 60 percent turnout and up. It’s possible that people aren’t interested in voting because they’re never returning to New Orleans, or they couldn’t get their absentee applications and ballots sent in time, or they couldn’t get back to the city to vote.

I resent the assumption by some analysts that higher black turnout would favor Ray Nagin — because Nagin is black. I firmly believe everyone should have an opportunity to vote, and when they do, most blacks and whites in New Orleans will vote for the candidate who will do what’s best for the city. That’s why whites voted in such significant numbers for Nagin four years ago; and that’s why blacks voted in such significant numbers for Mitch Landrieu.

What you can’t see in the T-P map above is the percentage of the black vote that Landrieu won in predominantly black precincts. Landrieu may not have won those precincts outright, but he did win significant numbers of votes in those precincts, which explains why he won about as many precincts as Forman did, but beat Forman by ten points.

On to the next round.

Then, finally, could we please start rebuilding the friggin’ city!!!

And this just in:

Calling Nagin a friend, Forman, who received 17 percent of the votes cast Saturday, said the mayor has served the city well, but it is time for a change.

“The man is tired,” Forman said, standing along the Mississippi River in Woldenberg Park, a project built on his watch as Audubon Institute president. “He’s worn out.”

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