Monthly Archives: August 2006

PART OF THE MACHINE: BAH, HOMBURG ON NIGHTLINE

Wed, 30 Aug 2006 19:23:43

The once mighty Jefferson machine continues to unravel. Dollar Bill faces a tough re-election fight and probable indictment on corruption charges. His lackey on the City Council Renee Gill-Pratfall was handed her head by Stacy Head. And Dollar Bill’s former law partner and handpicked DA Eddie Jordan seems to be melting down. I’ll get to Jordan in a minute but this post requires a set up. Here it is:

There was a piece on ABC’s Nightline last night about crime in Debrisville. It was called (what else?) Big Easy Crime Wave. I lost interest in Nightline when Ted Koppell was replaced by 3 headshots so I watched the video online after reading about it in the Picayune.

The piece was reported by veteran hardass/hard news reporter Brian Ross. It starts off with some clips of media savvy Deputy NOPD Chief Tony Cannatella. Reporters love Cannatella’s bluntness and brashness: he’s an old school cop with information age skills. Tony gives good sound bite y’all.

Ross moved on to a formal interview with hapless DA and Dollar Bill stooge Eddie Jordan. Jordan was immediately on the defensive: he obviously has never seen Brian Ross’s stuff and/or was poorly briefed. He made the cardinal mistake of losing his temper when on the Rossian grill. His press aide Leatrice Dupre interrupted the interview when Jordan pitched a fit and started ranting about stupid questions. Then Jordan made things even worse by stomping off like a mustachioed toddler. Rumor has it that he held his breath until he turned blue refused to eat his veggies and then stomped on his homburg.

Jordan’s infantile meltdown was entertaining television but yet another civic embarrassment for New Orleans. Hell I voted for Jordan because I *thought* he’d been a good US Attorney. I was wrong. It’s increasingly obvious that his right hand man and replacement career prosecutor Jim Letten was the reason Jordan looked good.

Even pre-K Jordan’s office was a joke. It never recovered from the way Jefferson henchchick Stephanie Butler handled the transition. Butler’s heavy handedness in firing white holdovers from the Connick regime led to the discrimination lawsuit that Jordan lost. The plaintiffs are still trying to collect from Jordan’s office. Talking about trying to squeeze blood from a turnip.

PART OF THE MACHINE: BAH, HOMBURG ON NIGHTLINE

Wed, 30 Aug 2006 19:23:43

The once mighty Jefferson machine continues to unravel. Dollar Bill faces a tough re-election fight and probable indictment on corruption charges. His lackey on the City Council Renee Gill-Pratfall was handed her head by Stacy Head. And Dollar Bill’s former law partner and handpicked DA Eddie Jordan seems to be melting down. I’ll get to Jordan in a minute but this post requires a set up. Here it is:

There was a piece on ABC’s Nightline last night about crime in Debrisville. It was called (what else?) Big Easy Crime Wave. I lost interest in Nightline when Ted Koppell was replaced by 3 headshots so I watched the video online after reading about it in the Picayune.

The piece was reported by veteran hardass/hard news reporter Brian Ross. It starts off with some clips of media savvy Deputy NOPD Chief Tony Cannatella. Reporters love Cannatella’s bluntness and brashness: he’s an old school cop with information age skills. Tony gives good sound bite y’all.

Ross moved on to a formal interview with hapless DA and Dollar Bill stooge Eddie Jordan. Jordan was immediately on the defensive: he obviously has never seen Brian Ross’s stuff and/or was poorly briefed. He made the cardinal mistake of losing his temper when on the Rossian grill. His press aide Leatrice Dupre interrupted the interview when Jordan pitched a fit and started ranting about stupid questions. Then Jordan made things even worse by stomping off like a mustachioed toddler. Rumor has it that he held his breath until he turned blue refused to eat his veggies and then stomped on his homburg.

Jordan’s infantile meltdown was entertaining television but yet another civic embarrassment for New Orleans. Hell I voted for Jordan because I *thought* he’d been a good US Attorney. I was wrong. It’s increasingly obvious that his right hand man and replacement career prosecutor Jim Letten was the reason Jordan looked good.

Even pre-K Jordan’s office was a joke. It never recovered from the way Jefferson henchchick Stephanie Butler handled the transition. Butler’s heavy handedness in firing white holdovers from the Connick regime led to the discrimination lawsuit that Jordan lost. The plaintiffs are still trying to collect from Jordan’s office. Talking about trying to squeeze blood from a turnip.

MAYOR MOONBEAM?

Mon, 21 Aug 2006 21:41:31

Clarence Hunt is a perennial candidate; one could almost call him a quadrennial candidate. He seems to be feuding via email with another Clarence that’s right our shiny headed absentee Mayor C Ray Nagin. Hunt ran against C Ray in 2002 and received the votes of most but not all of his relatives.  Hunt is that rare bird: an African-American Republican. And unlike C Ray who switched parties to become a Mayor/Civil Rights Hero C-Hunt is the real deal. Hmm I wonder if  Lloyd Bridges knows about C-Hunt? Oops he’s dead. Never mind…

Anyway there were some juicy bits of the Clarence’s flame war in the New Orleans Politics column in Saturday’s Picayune. Bruce Eggler did however display a bit of historical ignorance when he wrote:

“It all began [the feud] with a series of e-mails among local political activists about whether African-Americans should vote Republican or Democratic and which party has done more for minority groups. It all played out under the bizarre heading “Why Martin Luther King was a Republican.”

If C-Hunt was referring to MLK’s father known far and wide as Daddy King he was absolutely correct. Daddy King remained a registered Republican until switching in 1976 when his fellow Georgian Jimmy Carter ran for President. Daddy King of course was a member of the now extinct Rockefeller-Javits wing of the Republican party. Yeah I know what you’re thinking: only a know-it-all would know or care about such an arcane detail. In the immortal words of Elvis Costello “Girl I stand accused.” Not only am I a know-it-all I’m a smart ass. Surprised? I thought not. End of digression.
Back to the war of the Clarences. C-Hunt provoked a response from C Ray when he dared to call him MIA:

Then Hunt chimed in with a message saying among many other things that “with the billions of dollars in local/state/federal redevelopment money flowing into New Orleans we do not have any meaningful leadership . . . who are vigorously advocating for African-American equity participation in contract allocation. Mayor Nagin should be the primary advocate of economic parity but he is MIA (missing in action).”

Hunt also accused Nagin of being “completely into the throes of the King Rex crowd” and “controlled by the elite Southern aristocracy.” Nagin fired back this e-mail to Hunt: “You need to get a life! Only one MIA is you!”

Hunt replied with an e-mail addressed to “Mr. Mayor Moonbeam ” telling Nagin “It’s a shame that the people of New Orleans re-elected such a buffoon as yourself” and predicting that Nagin’s “recall is right around the corner my friend.” He signed it “Your friend Clarence.”

Nagin’s response: “You have to win first before someone can attempt to recall you. . . . God bless you my fellow moonbeam!”

There are several interesting things about this exchange. First I have a new reason to dislike C Ray: he’s an exclamation point slut. As long time and/or observant readers of this blog know I don’t do exclamation points. I can tolerate a few well placed ones but exclamation point promiscuity disturbs me…

Then there’s C-Hunt’s calling C Ray Mayor Moonbeam. C Ray is unworthy of that nickname. Jerry Brown was dubbed Governor Moonbeam back in the Seventies because people thought he had some flaky kooky ideas. BUT Jerry Brown has more intelligence in his pinky toe than C Ray has in his entire body. It’s blasphemy I tell ya. 

Yo C-Hunt leave that nickname alone or slap it on somebody who has something on the ball as opposed to the bald. That’s not entirely accurate: Jerry Brown is follically challenged too. In fact Brown who is now Mayor of Oakland is running for California Attorney General and his opponent is trying to revive the Moonbeam label. It’s not sticking. C-Hunt should stick to deep sea diving…

MAYOR MOONBEAM?

 Mon, 21 Aug 2006 21:41:31

Clarence Hunt is a perennial candidate; one could almost call him a quadrennial candidate. He seems to be feuding via email with another Clarence that’s right our shiny headed absentee Mayor C Ray Nagin. Hunt ran against C Ray in 2002 and received the votes of most but not all of his relatives.  Hunt is that rare bird: an African-American Republican. And unlike C Ray who switched parties to become a Mayor/Civil Rights Hero C-Hunt is the real deal. Hmm I wonder if  Lloyd Bridges knows about C-Hunt? Oops he’s dead. Never mind…

Anyway there were some juicy bits of the Clarence’s flame war in the New Orleans Politics column in Saturday’s Picayune. Bruce Eggler did however display a bit of historical ignorance when he wrote:

“It all began [the feud] with a series of e-mails among local political activists about whether African-Americans should vote Republican or Democratic and which party has done more for minority groups. It all played out under the bizarre heading “Why Martin Luther King was a Republican.”

If C-Hunt was referring to MLK’s father known far and wide as Daddy King he was absolutely correct. Daddy King remained a registered Republican until switching in 1976 when his fellow Georgian Jimmy Carter ran for President. Daddy King of course was a member of the now extinct Rockefeller-Javits wing of the Republican party. Yeah I know what you’re thinking: only a know-it-all would know or care about such an arcane detail. In the immortal words of Elvis Costello “Girl I stand accused.” Not only am I a know-it-all I’m a smart ass. Surprised? I thought not. End of digression.

Back to the war of the Clarences. C-Hunt provoked a response from C Ray when he dared to call him MIA:

“Then Hunt chimed in with a message saying among many other things that “with the billions of dollars in local/state/federal redevelopment money flowing into New Orleans we do not have any meaningful leadership . . . who are vigorously advocating for African-American equity participation in contract allocation. Mayor Nagin should be the primary advocate of economic parity but he is MIA (missing in action).”

Hunt also accused Nagin of being “completely into the throes of the King Rex crowd” and “controlled by the elite Southern aristocracy.” Nagin fired back this e-mail to Hunt: “You need to get a life! Only one MIA is you!”

Hunt replied with an e-mail addressed to “Mr. Mayor Moonbeam ” telling Nagin “It’s a shame that the people of New Orleans re-elected such a buffoon as yourself” and predicting that Nagin’s “recall is right around the corner my friend.” He signed it “Your friend Clarence.”

Nagin’s response: “You have to win first before someone can attempt to recall you. . . . God bless you my fellow moonbeam!”

There are several interesting things about this exchange. First I have a new reason to dislike C Ray: he’s an exclamation point slut. As long time and/or observant readers of this blog know I don’t do exclamation points. I can tolerate a few well placed ones but exclamation point promiscuity disturbs me…

Then there’s C-Hunt’s calling C Ray Mayor Moonbeam. C Ray is unworthy of that nickname. Jerry Brown was dubbed Governor Moonbeam back in the Seventies because people thought he had some flaky kooky ideas. BUT Jerry Brown has more intelligence in his pinky toe than C Ray has in his entire body. It’s blasphemy I tell ya. 

Yo C-Hunt leave that nickname alone or slap it on somebody who has something on the ball as opposed to the bald. That’s not entirely accurate: Jerry Brown is follically challenged too. In fact Brown who is now Mayor of Oakland is running for California Attorney General and his opponent is trying to revive the Moonbeam label. It’s not sticking. C-Hunt should stick to deep sea diving…

THE DOLLAR BILL DOZEN

 Tue, 15 Aug 2006 19:01:46

No this is NOT a song list but a post about our Klepto Congressman’s declared foes. (I can’t believe it took me this long to sing a song of Dollar Bill: I risked losing my “All Dollar Bill All The Time” accreditation.) There are 9 wannabes 1 longshot and 2 who have a shot at taking out Dollar Bill.

I list former councilman and state legislator Troy Carter as a longshot. His 2002 Mayoral campaign tanked and he’s divided his time between here and North Carolina since leaving office. The one thing Carter has going for him is that he’s from the West Bank and if they still remember him that’s a plus. Frankly he was an empty suit on the Council and I don’t know whether or not his campaign will take-off. But ya never know.

The 2 contenders are State Senator Derrick Shepherd and State Rep. Karen Carter. Shepherd has two major liabilities: he’s from Marrero and he has the reputation of being the political equivalent of nomadic basketball coach Larry Brown. The Marrero base could be an advantage in the primary BUT a major disadvantage in the run-off. I’m an ABDB voter BUT do I want a Congressman from Marrero? Not bloody likely…

That brings me to Karen Carter. She’s smart articulate and reform minded. She’s one of the black legislators who refused to drink the C Ray as Civil Rights hero Kool-Aid and supported Mitch. She’s also the BOLD candidate and they’re the only alphabet soup political organization that still has any influence. If I were voting today it would be for Ms. Carter.

Dollar Bill still has a chance to be re-elected: he’s going to play the martyr card for all it’s worth. I expect an October indictment which has more to do with national Republican strategy than anything else. It will be a very interesting and very dirty campaign. Dollar Bill’s machine depends on his position for the money to keep the engine lubed. If he loses the wheels will fall off the machine. Let’s keep our fingers crossed. Hell even if he gets his sleazy ass re-elected Dollar Bill is likely to be rooming with Rob Ney or Duke Cunningham in a Club Fed by this time next year.

Ball Of Confusion

 BALL OF CONFUSION Fri, 11 Aug 2006 04:59:59

“That’s what the world is today. Hey hey let me hear ya…”

I love the Temptations; especially the edgy funkier than average for Motown songs written for them by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong. The song “Ball Of Confusion” came out in 1970 with  the Vietnam War raging and general social unrest at home and abroad. Sounds familiar doesn’t it? The reaction to that era was a shift to the Right in the U.S. It will be interesting to see what happens this time around.

Today Scotland Yard announced that an alleged terrorist plot that targeted planes flying out of Heathrow Airport has been foiled. The American MSM has swallowed the story whole thus far but what I consider to be the best newspaper in the English speaking world The Guardian is more circumspect in its reporting. It’s impossible not to be leery of things trumpeted by unpopular and discredited leaders like Tony (The Artful Dodger) Blair and President Beavis. Before this latest development British Home Secretary/Blair lackey John Reid was conducting a smear campaign against dissident Labour MPs who oppose the Iraq misadventure. It’s a sad day in world politics when a Labour Government uses Rovian tactics. Shame on you Mr. Reid.

At home Homeland Insecurity honcho Michael Chertoff and Torture Boy Gonzalez are trotting out the al-Qaida straw man but the British government seems reluctant to go along for the ride this time round. Also Chertoff is claiming that the plot was imminent and the people who actually did the investigating in the U.K. are saying that no bombs had been assembled yet. All the Repubs are interested in is a campaign issue to save their sorry asses from investigations and possible jail time.

Speaking of jail here’s  another proud chapter in the Beavis-Duce Administration’s pro-torture campaign. Here’s the story as reported by Pete Yost of the AP:

“The Bush administration drafted amendments to the War Crimes Act that would retroactively protect policy makers from possible criminal charges for authorizing any humiliating and degrading treatment of detainees according to lawyers who have seen the proposal.

The move by the administration is the latest effort to deal with the treatment of those taken into custody in the war on terror.

At issue are interrogations carried out by the CIA and the degree to which harsh tactics such as water-boarding were authorized by administration officials. A separate law the Uniform Code of Military Justice applies to the military. When interrogators engage in waterboarding prisoners are strapped to a plank and dunked in water until nearly drowning.

One section of the draft would outlaw torture and inhuman or cruel treatment but it does not contain prohibitions from Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions against  “outrages upon personal dignity in particular humiliating and degrading treatment.”

Another section would apply the legislation retroactively according to two lawyers who have seen the contents of the section and who spoke on the condition of anonymity because their sources did not authorize them to release the information.

One of the two lawyers said that the draft is in the revision stage but that the administration seems intent on pushing forward the draft’s major points in Congress after Labor Day.

“I think what this bill can do is in effect immunize past crimes. That’s why it’s so dangerous ” said a third lawyer Eugene Fidell president of the National Institute of Military Justice. Fidell said the initiative is “not just protection of political appointees but also CIA personnel who led interrogations.”

Interrogation practices “follow from policies that were formed at the highest levels of the administration ” said a fourth lawyer Scott Horton who has followed detainee issues closely. “The administration is trying to insulate policy makers under the War Crimes Act.”

A White House spokesman said Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions includes a number of vague terms that are susceptible to different interpretations.

The administration believes it is very important to bring clarity to the War Crimes Act so that those on the front lines in the war on terror “have clear rules that are defined in law ” said the White House spokesman.

Extreme interrogation practices have been a flash point for criticism of the Bush administration .”

It makes you proud to be an American doesn’t it? Retroactive changes to existing laws have always been regarded with suspicion by the courts so hopefully this latest attempt by the Bush administration to place itself above the law will not stand. Can you imagine George Washington Abraham Lincoln or Franklin Roosevelt attempting to protect war criminals? I suspect that Torture Boy would say that they had “quaint and outmoded” values…

UPDATE: My friend Parenthetical has some amusing pertinent and impudent things to say on the day after the latest waving of the bloody flag.

AT THE MOVIES: PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: DEAD MAN’S CHEST T

Thu, 10 Aug 2006 06:16:46 

Yeah I know this flick is as mainstream as it gets but I’ve always had a soft spot (possibly in my head) for pirate movies. From Errol Flynn in “Captain Blood” and “The Sea Hawk” to Burt Lancaster in “The Crimson Pirate” to Robert Newton in “Treasure Island “ I loved them all. As a small child I had fantasies of having a peg leg hook for an arm and a parrot on my shoulder. As I grew up I decided that I’d rather not lose a limb because your basic modern prothesis is boring and because I’m extremely fond of my extremities. Btw I still do a mean Bobby Newton as Long John Silver impression: arr arr. And I still try to buckle my swash as often as possible. Now if only I could figure out what the hell a swash is…

The first “Pirates Of The Caribbean” film was a pleasant surprise. It was a real movie movie with a great star turn by Johnny Depp as Keith Richards sound alike Captain Jack Sparrow. The special effects served the story instead of vice versa but that’s not the case with “Pirates Too.” In the sequel the special effects remain spectacular but they overwhelm the story. It’s a pity too: there’s a good movie buried under all that CG clutter.

Johnny Depp is consistently watchable but his dialogue is not as sharp as the first time round. Davy Jones is a wonderful villain and I loved the Octopus thing he had going on. He made Doc Ock look tinny in contrast.

Several of the action set pieces were outstanding but they kept reaching into the quiver and taking out the same arrow over and over and over again. The final battle should have been very exciting but they’d done something quite similar earlier. All they had to do was to eliminate one of the special effects scenes and the movie would have clocked in at 2 hours. It was definitely too damn long; a common problem with big budget flicks. Hollywood confuses quantity with quality far too often.

Then there’s the Orlando Bloom effect: he’s the only actor who makes Keanu Reeves dude look animated. He kept showing up and slowing things down by being wooden not woody. Woody is good wooden is tinny…

Despite its flaws I thought “Pirates Too” was a pretty decent popcorn movie for a hot summer in Debrisville. Hey it took my mind off Mr. Bingle C Ray the Cynthias and local weatherdork Bob Breck’s bad toupee.

ADRASTOS GRADE: C+

SPINNING THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM

 Tue, 08 Aug 2006 20:23:35

Yesterday a bunch of guys in suits who hate one another held a press conference about the criminal justice system (hereinafter CJS.) C Ray was of course in full tilt hipster doofus mode spouting cliches and promising way too much man. This could be the real reason to call him Ray Reagan: his preposterous OTT optimism man. What happened yesterday was more shadow boxing: a plan to have a plan to have a plan man. I’m probably being a bit harsh: a few useful steps were announced yesterday BUT nothing that warranted C Ray’s preening and posturing. Judge Ed Lombard’s attempt to inject a note of realism into the procedings was ignored by the Picayune but was featured on WWL’s 5 O’Clock news last night.

The most promising things announced were the new system to subpeona cops to testify and Jefferson DA Paul Connick’s loaning case screeners to our hapless DA. I’m also glad that the courthouse will be fully functional soon but none of this really constitutes a plan except  in Nagin World where spinning equals planning. The problem is that Nagin’s spin cycle has crapped out on him and he in turn has crapped out on the people of New Orleans.

There was one announcement made that concerns me: 

“To help represent the city’s poorest defendants Greenbaum’s office is recruiting volunteer attorneys from throughout the state to take up the slack. Greenbaum said about 50 lawyers attended an all-day training seminar on criminal law Friday and he expects most of the participants will be willing to defend clients. “

I hope that these “volunteer” lawyers won’t be handling the most serious felony cases. Volunteerism and good intentions won’t cut it with the tougher cases. Some of these volunteers are apt to run for the exits when they meet their clients. Also the CJS is already a quaqmire with constitutional pitfalls at every turn which is why I want the worst defendants to have competent counsel. What ‘s really needed is for lawyers with criminal law experience to try cases and they’ll want to be paid. It always comes down to money y’all. Of course given the current level of incompetence at the DA’s office it may not matter. Schroeder has an excellent bit about Jordan’s office in today’s epic posting.

Back to the suits who hate one another. I’d love to see extended video of the whole spin session. Gusman hates Nagin Riley and Foti. Jordan hates Gusman Nagin and Riley. Nagin hates Gusman and Jordan. And on and on and on. Former State Attorney General Richard Ieyoub should have worn a blue UN peacekeeper’s helmet. It’s appropriate that Ieyoub is Lebanese-American: our politics and those of his father’s native country are depessingly familiar as well as familial.  

BRIDGING THE GAP BETWEEN GRETNA AND MEMORIAL HOSPITAL

 Mon, 07 Aug 2006 13:52:04

Yes this post has a convoluted title that sounds like the slogan of a local car dealer whose ex-wife once tried to have murdered. But this entry has nothing to do with Ronnie and Carmella Lamarque and everything to do with Sheriff Cardinal Attorney General Charlie Foti. Sunday’s Picayune provided a sneak peek at the evidence against the Memorial 3. As Richard Pryor would surely say: “it’s some weak ass shit.” The Picayune headline said it all: Doctor’s drug mix not ideal killer. That’s appropriate because a crime was not committed; palliative stress and pain relieving levels of medicine were administered to very ill patients. That’s what happened at Memorial: the more I’ve looked into the case the weaker the evidence looks. At first I thought that there might have been the sort of subtle and covert “mercy killing” that happens every day in every hospital in the country. But my reading of the facts doesn’t support that conclusion. Repeat after me: no crime was committed during that terrible week in that flooded hospital.

If I’m correct and Sheriff Cardinal Attorney General Foti is wrong: why the hysterical press conference? It was his last hurrah on the case. As much as our state AG’s past present and future like to talk about crime the office’s constitutional role is to serve as the attorney to the state government. The AG’s real world focus is on civil not criminal law. But criminal law is politically sexier and Charlie just couldn’t resist shaking his booty for the international press one more time. It was shameless as well as shamelessly effective in certain quarters. Charlie is aces with the evangelicals in North Louisiana and at archdioceses across South Louisiana right now.

In stark contrast to the Memorial Hospital case Foti’s office quietly forwarded its report on the Gretna bridge blockade episode to hapless Orleans Parish DA Eddie Jordan this week. The report was sent without any hoopla or political posturing. The warring parties in this case are civil rights groups and the white bread suburban power structure of Gretna. Foti is a typical Louisiana Democrat who figures that he has the black vote sewn up so he doesn’t want to alienate god fearing Gretnans who think that everyone on the bridge that day was a lootin’ burnin’ thug. They were wrong.

It’s probably narcissistic to quote myself but here’s what I wrote about this episode on January 13 when my readers could have met in a refrigerator box. The piece was called Regretnas In Jefferson Parish:

“A few days ago as if determined to show that stupidity and ineptitude in local government is not just a N’awlins thing the JP council voted to support Gretna in a civil rights lawsuit stemming from the infamous bridge incident immediately post-K. Ed Bradley did an excellent story about this on Sixty Minutes back in December.

Here are the facts as I understand them. A group of people locals and tourists alike attempted to cross the river to the West Bank via the Crescent City Connection bridge. The vast majority of those fleeing were African-American. Somewhere in the middle of the bridge they were stopped by Gretna police officers and told to get the f**k off the bridge. Warning shots were fired as well. Gretna officialdom maintains that this was justified by the emergency. The problem with this reasoning is that the State of Louisiana owns and operates the CCC and not the burg of Gretna. And it’s fairly obvious that race was a factor as well. (SNIP)

A final note: I am usually a pro-police law and order liberal (there are more of us than some people think) but these cops went too far and what they did was intolerant and stupid. And I am intolerant of intolerance and stupidity. I also don’t think you should need a passport to go from New Orleans to Gretna.”

Thus spake the early Adrastos.

UPDATE: The report was also sent to the US Attorney’s office which may well be as a comment points out the right place for this incident to be reviewed.

THERE’S NOTHING AT THE END OF THE RAINBOW

Wed, 02 Aug 2006 05:17:58

I’m too pooped to blog in any detail after our very successful 3 neighborhood group Night Out Against Crime party on Napoleon Avenue. Two bloggers showed up: Ray and Becky. And Ray got the rock star treatment from my friends and devoted readers Julie and Anne. I don’t remember if Becky met them. The heat numbs my brain; not to mention beer. I do recall that Becky brought some Abita…

Anyway I missed FUBAR Fest Round 2 but I’m sure the reviews will be rollin’ in soon. I did have to keep telling my neighbors that the much ballyhooed pot of money is looking more and more like a chimera. There’s no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow but everyone wants a happy ending. Hell I do too but I know too much about the process to be optimistic. All the questions about the planning process brought to mind one of Richard Thompson’s most sardonic songs “The End Of the Rainbow.” RT concludes that there’s “nothing at the end of the rainbow.” I’m inclined to agree.  Here are the complete lyrics; consider it Brit folk rock noir.

I feel for you you little horror
Safe at your mother’s breast
No lucky break for you around the corner
‘Cos your father is a bully
And he thinks that you’re a pest
And your sister she’s no better than a whore

Life seems so rosy in the cradle
but I’ll be a friend I’ll tell you what’s in store
There’s nothing at the end of the rainbow
There’s nothing to grow up for anymore

Tycoons and barrow boys will rob you
And throw you on the side
And all because they love themselves sincerely
And the man holds a bread-knife
Up to your throat is four feet wide
And he’s anxious just to show you what it’s for

Your mother works so hard to make you happy
But take a look outside the nursery door
There’s nothing at the end of the rainbow
There’s nothing to grow up for anymore

All the sad and empty faces
That pass you on the street
All running in their sleep all in a dream
Every loving handshake
Is just another man to beat
How your heart aches just to cut him to the core

Life seems so rosy in the cradle
but I’ll be a friend I’ll tell you what’s in store
There’s nothing at the end of the rainbow