Monthly Archives: July 2007

THE CAMPAIGN: SLOW MOTION JINDALIZATION

Mon, 23 Jul 2007 19:38:15

The Sunday Picayune had a dull story about how dull the Gubernatorial race has been thus far. In fact it’s been so dull that I should have put the word campaign in quotes in the title. It’s not ususal for a campaign in the Gret Stet to snooze through the summer but the quieter things are on the campaign trail the better it is for the frontrunner Bobby Jindal.

Jindal formally announced his bid last Monday but it was overshadowed by the Vitty-n-Wendy show. I expect that Jindal’s handlers were fuming: Vitty was well aware of the planned roll out and was supposed to participate in the stop in Kenner. But Vitty is a law to himself and has a Vittycentric view of the universe. In Vitty cosmology he’s the sun and the moon as well as the john…

Jindal is playing it very close to the vest. He has the reputation as a policy wonk but his campaign is vague and themeless. He has a big lead and is trying to run out the clock. I expect his opponent Walter Boasso to start  comparing Jindal to Thomas Dewey and himself to the patron saint of underdogs Harry Truman. Behind in the polls? An unpopular President? Compare yourself to the feisty haberdasher from Mizzou. The problem with that analogy is that polls are much more accurate than in Truman’s day. Democrat Walter Boasso has his work cut out for him as does North Louisiana populist Foster Campbell.

Then there’s the ulitmate wild card: Dallas Ray Nagin. There was a blurb in the local rag wherein State Senator Cleo Fields discusses the possibilty of a bid by baldy. Nagin is not a serious threat to anyone but the people of Debrisville and why Fields thinks that C Ray could force Jindal into a run-off is a mystery to me. Absent some bizarre twist Jindal has an excellent shot at winning the primary and Jindalizing the gret stet.

It will be very interesting to see if the Boy Wonder becomes the Boy Blunder if he moves into the Governor’s mansion. I’m glad he has a direct line to Jeee-sus. I hope the big guy isn’t too busy forgiving Vitty to return Jindal’s calls…

Stay tuned. 

THE SLOW EDDIE BLUES: SECOND VERSE, SAME AS THE FIRST

Thu, 19 Jul 2007 15:48:36

Orleans Parish DA Eddie Jordan appeared before the City Council’s criminal justice committee yesterday to defend the indefensible; aka his record. Unfortunately some of the usual suspects (no not Kevin Spacey) showed up to defend Jordan on racial grounds. According to his defenders those who oppose Jordan are all racist rednecks which is manifestly preposterous. If anyone has the time to do some digging I suspect that we’ll learn that some of Slow Eddie’s defenders have ties to Dollar Bill’s machine. LINK.

My friend Brian Denzer has posted his reaction to yesterday’s hearing at Citizen Crime Watch. It’s an impassioned hearfelt and beautifully written post. Well done Brian. Thanks for all your efforts to make this a safer city. Please don’t get too discouraged: New Orleans needs your passionate advocacy.

CROSSING JORDAN

Wed, 18 Jul 2007 14:26:28

Crossing JordanSlow Eddie

 LEFT: Jill Hennessy as a cranky teevee ME. RIGHT: Slow Eddie Jordan inept real life DA.

The teevee show Crossing Jordan was recently cancelled and most New Orleanians would like to see the Slow Eddie Jordan District Attorney show canceled as well. I’m not standing up for Jordan: he’s been a bad and even worse stubborn DA. He seems to need remedial lessons in how to pick up the phone and talk to the NOPD. BUT I think one should look before one leaps. What happens if Slow Eddie beats an uncharacteristically hasty retreat? According to my diligent friend Celcus the First Assistant DA Gaynell Williams will replace the man who appointed her. I’ve only seen her on the teevee news from time to time but she doesn’t appear to be the brightest bulb in the lamp. Do any of my lawyer readers have any first hand experiences with Ms. Williams that they’d like to share?

The impulse to see Slow Eddie’s head on a pike is understandable but Ms. Williams is unlikely to be a better DA than her boss: she’s the first assistant so she’s part of the problem. Since Dollar Bill’s hatchetwoman Stephanie Butler controlled patronage at the DA’s office Ms. Williams is one of their peeps. This may be why some on the City Council want to bring in a special counsel to oversee the prosecution of violent crimes in the parish in lieu of demanding Jordan’s resignation. I’m not sure which would be the better choice BUT I’m not sure that creating a new incumbent is the best idea come the next election: Slow Eddie is toast but his replacement might have a shot. 

The *real* problems at the Orleans Parish District are institutional. The mass firings of experienced support staff and investigators at the beginning of Jordan’s tenure have demoralized the office ever since. I know an ex-ADA who was approached for one of the newly created higher paying jobs who declined because she didn’t want to work for Jordan and his minions which is in turn I realize another argument for his resignation.

There’s little doubt that Eddie Jordan has been a disaster. The arguments for his resignation and/or removal are compelling ones. I don’t however expect that he’ll resign or be removed until he faces the voters. Make that *if* he faces the voters. Slow Eddie’s critics need to keep the pressure on but they should also start shopping for a candidate to replace him at the next election.
That’s the end of my stint as the village contrarian; for now that is.

THE NIGHT I KINDA, SORTA MET THE CANAL STREET MADAM

Wed, 11 Jul 2007 05:01:13

How’s that for a teaser? And no I did not frequent her bordello. Get your minds out of the gutter folks. And that means you blondie.

T’was the night before the 2004 Presidential Election. Dr. A and I joined a group of friends,  Romans and countrymen at the corner of Napoleon and Magazine to wave Kerry-Edwards signs and encourage people to vote out the dolt. We all know how that turned out.

At one point I was on the neutral ground across the street from Miss Mae’s bar. There was a tall brunette who a tabloid writer would call statuesque. I suspect that Ashley or Ray would call her something else. Anyway I chatted with her for a few minutes about how horrible Bush was and I predicted that Kerry would win. We all know how that turned out too.
 
A few minutes later someone (I can’t recall who but it might have been Bob, Cookie Tom,  Julie or Jen) said to me: “Did you realize who you were talking to?”

“Nope. But she looked kinda familiar.”

“It was the Canal Street Madam.”

Tagged

TAKIN’ IT TO THE STREETS WITH DALLAS RAY

 Tue, 10 Jul 2007 05:01:15

I’ve been too busy to comment on Mayor Airhead’s latest antics until now. The man is clearly a clown of the “a little song a little dance a little seltzer down the pants” variety. He keeps dropping broad hints that he may run for Governor and claims that “the race is wide open.” Sorry o Bald-n-buffed one the only thing that’s wide open is your mouth. I’m sure Bobby Jindal is shaking in his python boots right now over the prospect of facing someone with an approval rating of below 30% in NOLA and below 20% in the rest of the Gret Stet.

The Mayor appeared at a forum on public housing last weekend and morphed into a lefty for the crowd and Congresswoman Maxine Walters. Ms. Waters may be something of a mouthy headline hunter but she’s a genuine lefty not an ersatz one like our “worn out” mouthy headline hunter of a Mayor. That’s right folks C Ray claims to have has worked his well manicured fingers to the bone. Perhaps he’s worn out from being MIA during the late legislative session. Of course we probably did better without C Ray driving around the corridors of the Capitol in his clown car. Honk honk.

But where *was* Nagin during his long stretches of invisibilty? Informed blogosphere sources  (aka Mr. Clio) say that he’s been spending a lot of time in Dallas and that his family is living there. It doesn’t surprise me a bit. When Dr. A and I were in exile in Plano Texas just outside Dallas we frequented the Apple Store at a big ass upscale mall because there was no internet access where we were staying. Whenever we told people in the shops that we were from New Orleans they’d say: “Your Mayor was in here just the other day.” The joint was lousy with Nagin sightings y’all. Just call him Dallas Ray.

Back to the public housing confab. C Ray urged people to take their outrage as well as their keisters into the streets on 8/29/07. Once again he denounced those who are not helping New Orleans recover. Once again he acts as if he’s not one of THEM. The innocent bystander act is torn and frayed after nearly 2 years. Nagin is so much one of Them that I expect him to burst into song: “G-l-o-r-i-a Gloria.” There you have it folks: C Ray and a Van Morrison reference in the same sentence. My life is now complete or is that replete? Deplete?

When I sat down to write this post I wasn’t sure what street song worked best for the title. Street Fighting Man? Too action packed; too Rolling Stoned to describe our indolent Mayor he said channeling Robin Trower. I decided that the Doobie Brothers tune Takin’ It To The Streets worked better given the gossip about possible herbal self medication by the Mayor. But I’d rather post a video of the Stones so here’s Street Fighting Man man:

Finally Oyster has been en fuego on this topical topic for the last few days. Get thee to Your RightHand Thief and commence a readin and a scrollin’ yes siree Bob. Hmm I wonder who the hell Bob is and why we should yes sir him? Oh yeah: Mr. Gloomy Pants has a swell C Ray post over at the yellow blog as does Perfesser Morris who believes that the lunatic is truly on the grass… 

MUDDLING THROUGH

 Mon, 02 Jul 2007 13:50:10

There’s a lot of angst in the NOLA blogosphere this summer. Progress in the city seems to have come to a standstill: the charges against Dinneral Shavers’ accused killer have been dropped and looming in the background is Hurricane season and whether or not the levees will hold. Things do indeed look grim but I remain more sanguine than most about the future of New Orleans. Am I crazy? Well I’ve stayed despite manifold misgivings so I’m at least semi-crazy. The reason I think we have a shot at being okay is that New Orleanians are experts at muddling through. We’ve done it repeatedly throughout our history.

Before the Civil War,  New Orleans was one of the richest cities in the world. Of course antebellum NOLA’s prosperity was built on the rotten and sordid foundation of slavery. The city fell early in the Civil War slavery was abolished and many believed the city would die. It didn’t. We muddled through.
 
The 20th Century brought a series of  calamities: the flood of 1927; Hurricane Betsy; economic stagnation; middle class flight; crime corruption and crack. New Orleans has been declared dead many times. It’s hung in there. How? We muddled through. 
 
Most of our long term problems-crime incompetent leaders bad schools corruption to name but a few-have been with us forever. We’ve survived by learning how to muddle through. Surviving isn’t as uplifting as thriving but there are worse things than muddling through; like giving into despair. I always thought that the post-K  recovery would be a slow and painful process given the profound problems we had before the levees broke. New Orleans was a glorious mess pre-K and now it’s even messier. It’s going to take time patience and above all else the ability to muddle through. It’s one of the things we do best after all.