The New York Times reports: “New York City plans to enact a far-reaching ban on the sale of large sodas and other sugary drinks at restaurants, movie theaters and street carts, in the most ambitious effort yet by the Bloomberg administration to combat rising obesity.” Surely the mayor has more important issues to address than this.
If Romney wants to win the election, he’d better start releasing his inner Chris Christie.
Yesterday when Romney visited a poor school in the inner city of Philadelphia, the Obama administration organized a protest against him. They even used the mayor of Philadelphia, Michael Nutter, who addressed the media and the protestors. He snarkily said that Romney “suddenly somehow found West Philadelphia.”
The Washington Post reported:
When Mitt Romney came to an inner-city charter school here Thursday to promote his new education agenda, he received something of a history lecture about the persecution of blacks in America and the struggles of African American children to meet the academic achievements of their white counterparts.
Seeking to broaden his appeal heading into the general election, Romney was venturing for his first time in this campaign into an impoverished black neighborhood to hear the concerns of local educators and community leaders. But here in the streets of West Philadelphia, the emotion surrounding his contest with the nation’s first black president was raw, as dozens of neighborhood residents shouted, “Get out, Romney, get out!”…
…Outside, meanwhile, some brick row houses across from the school were boarded up. Police had cordoned off a full city block to protect Romney and his entourage. Residents, some of them organized by Obama’s campaign, stood on their porches and gathered at a sidewalk corner to shout angrily at Romney. Some held signs saying, “We are the 99%.” One man’s placard trumpeted an often-referenced Romney gaffe: “I am not concerned about the very poor.”
Madaline G. Dunn, 78, who said she has lived here for 50 years and volunteers at the school, said she is “personally offended” that Romney would visit her neighborhood.
“It’s not appreciated here,” she said. “It is absolutely denigrating for him to come in here and speak his garbage.”
So how would Chris Christie handle it? He certainly wouldn’t bow his head and move on. Or look embarrassed. All Romney has to do to stop this kind of thing is to say “and how is this working out for you? Has the Obama administration helped you one bit? Are you better off now? More jobs? Better salary? Are the schools better?” Then he should turn his attention to Nutter or fill-in-the-blank Democrat politician. “Are things better now with Nutter (or X)? Doesn’t look like it.”
Romney doesn’t have to be smart aleck. He shouldn’t be angry. He shouldn’t be confrontational. But he should show some passion, via disgust, at the state of the country in the past 3 years.
He needs to find a line to repeat at every stop he makes where he is protested. Otherwise the attacks will continue and intensify and give the media a meme with which to clobber Romney.
Right as in conservative. Seems the present mayor, up for re-election May 3, is Boris Johnson and he’s a very popular conservative. They like his sense of humor and cool factor. Who knew?
Midtown has a Democrat as our representative on the Memphis City Council, but he is a Democrat who gets it when it comes to property taxes.
In today’s Commercial Appeal, Strickland pens an op ed entitled “Memphis can’t afford a property tax hike.” How right he is, in both senses of the word. He points out that Memphians pay the highest property taxes in the state. “Our rate is 30 percent higher than Germantown’s, 75 percent higher than Nashville’s, and 235 percent higher than the rate in Somerville in Fayette County.
“The owner of a $150,000 house in Memphis pays $2,703 a year in taxes. If you move about 25 miles east of Cordova to Somerville, you will pay only $806 in taxes for a house of the same value.” And they want to raise it.
Mayor A C Wharton’s proposed budget for the fiscal year that begins in July, which the City Council will review over the next six weeks, would be the largest budget in the history of Memphis if it is passed as the mayor presented it — $628.3 million. It is $22 million higher than the current year’s budget.
“In 2008, over my objections, the council greatly increased city government spending to $616 million. And despite the fact that the administration claims the mayor’s budget proposal includes $24 million in cuts, the amount spent in operating city government has increased. Any money saved with reductions in one part of city government is spent on a program or job in another area of City Hall.
“If the council approves the mayor’s proposed 47-cent one-year increase in the tax rate, Memphis’ tax rate for the coming fiscal year will be 38 percent higher than Germantown’s, 86 percent higher than Nashville’s and 257 percent higher than Somerville’s. For the $150,000 house, the Memphis owner will pay approximately $2,900 compared to an owner in Nashville paying $1,500. Almost twice as much.”
Strickland sees that the end result of all of this is an exodus to Mississippi and our rural environs. We can’t sustain the loss of so many citizens and operate Memphis efficiently.
I can add that I don’t see, ethically, why a home owner should pay for his home once and then, through property taxes, pay for it again. That is a gouging our founding fathers would rail against.
Strickland is taking a very Reagan approach to the issue against his fellow Democrats. I agree with him; “the future of Memphis rests upon our (the council’s) decisions.” If they allow greed or greedy constituents to win the tax fight we will all lose.
Speaking at LeMoyne-Owen College here in Memphis, Nation of Islam Minister Farrakhan says some leaders will be killed in the coming days.
Scott Carroll at The Commercial Appeal reported this:
Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan addressed a broad range of subjects — everything from race, faith and education in America to the nation’s wars — in an appearance at LeMoyne-Owen College Saturday night as part of the school’s first Diversity Leadership Conference.
About 1,400 people from the Mid-South and across the state attended the evening lecture, including local elected officials State Rep. G.A. Hardaway and County Commissioner Justin Ford and former Memphis Mayor Willie Herenton, who presented Farrakhan with a key to the city in 1992.
During a 2009 visit to Memphis Farrakhan proclaimed to an audience his belief the H1N1 vaccine was created as a means of global population control.
However, he overlooked this – which seems a little bit important:
Yesterday at his press conference, President Obama shocked everyone when he said:
“Ultimately, I’m confident that the Supreme Court will not take what would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress. And I’d just remind conservative commentators that for years what we’ve heard is, the biggest problem on the bench was judicial activism or a lack of judicial restraint — that an unelected group of people would somehow overturn a duly constituted and passed law. Well, this is a good example. And I’m pretty confident that this Court will recognize that and not take that step.”
These words and his attitude led to a lot of speculation that Obama found out the vote on his Affordable Care Act. Drudge headlined the possibility and perhaps he was tipped off. Even though we were told that leaks never happen in such high minded places at the Supreme Court, it’s not impossible. Actually, with this president it’s quite probable.
Many people are fingering Justice Kagan as the possible source of the leak. There are rumors that Justice Kagan dined with him Friday night. I haven’t been able to verify this, but it’s intriguing since the vote took place that day. Kagan was his first appointment and she had been the solicitor general for his administration, arguing for Obamacare. Many court observers felt she should have recused herself from the vote because of this biased connection. So it makes sense that she would be the one.
If you want to be precise about it, Kagan didn’t even need to say a word, should she have wanted to convey the results of the vote. A nod, a look; it wouldn’t be hard to let someone know an outcome. Technically, she could be within the law. For some liberals, swearing an oath on the Bible or the Constitution holds little moral imperative. They don’t believe in them anyhow, so why not keep up appearances? Kagan had a reputation as a tattletale when she was at Harvard.
Politicians like Obama, steeped in the Chicago way, know how to find things out. Remember Jack Ryan? David Axelrod and his group managed to have Republican Jack Ryan’s sealed divorce papers opened, removing him as an obstacle in Obama’s senatorial campaign. If you’ve seen the show “Boss” with Kelsey Grammer who plays a corrupt Chicago mayor, you know how hardball is played and how it’s always possible to find things out.
And Obama would want to find out. If the ruling doesn’t go his way he now has time to try a little coercion. If that doesn’t work, there’s always fear. If I were Kennedy, Thomas, Alito, Scalia or Roberts, I wouldn’t go out on a boat anytime soon. I hope none of them has a skeleton in the closet, because it will come out and the media will dwell on it until the person retires.
Some bloggers have pointed out that the last laugh might be on Bart Stupak. He Judas’d his vote, dropped his scruples and morals, lost his spot in Congress and it may all have been for nothing.
Even though Obama now is railing against judicial activism (which this isn’t), he doesn’t prove himself as too smart on his supposed area of legal expertise – the Constitution. Evidently he never thought the case would get to the Supreme Court.
Maybe that’s why we never see his grades, his lesson plans or his legal writings.
Sebelius: ‘So Justice Kagan, how did the vote go?”
Kagan: “I can’t tell you that!”
Sebelius: “Ok. Just tell me this. Should we go ahead and hire those 4,000 new IRS agents?”
Kagan: “If you want them sitting around HQ’s reading the Wall Street Journal and playing Words With friends then sure, go ahead and hire them.’
What is it about the Memphis Ford family and Rolex watches?
State Senator John Ford went to jail in the Tennessee Waltz sting after he had obtained a Rolex watch. He got the $70,000 time piece as a gift from developer Rusty Hyneman. A gift with strings – he would see to it that some of Hyneman’s state fines would be erased – and Ford would get a shiny watch. Jail, too, when the gifts for political favors bribery was pointed out by the FBI.
Now John Ford, who just ran for Shelby County Mayor last year, has gotten into trouble over a Rolex watch. Well, two, actually. He went to Midtown jeweler Las Savell on Christmas Eve of 2010 and saw a black Rolex watch for a man and a woman’s white gold watch and decided he’d take them. He did, with the jeweler getting a check for $5,835.31.
Only trouble was, the check bounced. When Savell pointed this out, Ford asked for more time. Then it bounced two more times and the police were called.
Yesterday the former interim mayor and former Shelby County Commissioner was arrested on a charge of theft. He has some other issues with checks and laws, including being fined by the state for operating his funeral home without a license.
Rolexes seem to be a fatal attraction for the Fords.
There is an excellent article in the New York Post today that brings the memory of September 11 back as sharply as a camera lens focusing on something at a distance. It’s an excerpt from a book, “The Eleventh Day: The full story of 9/11 and Osama Bin Laden” by Anthony Summers and Robbyn Swan.
As the writers point out, September 11 was an incredibly beautiful day, not just in the Northeast, but across the nation. They begin to lay out the series of events in ways that jog your memory.
In Memphis it was as beautiful as a day could be – crisply blue, free of excessive heat, the trees and lawn still clinging to green before fall starts its withering creep. I woke up with concerns for my mother. Her brother had died unexpectedly a month earlier. I knew she would be brooding about it. August 11 had been a shock, particularly since my other uncle had died that same day a year earlier.
Everyone went to school and work and I was concerned also with preparations for my husband’s birthday the next day. I was also going ahead with a cake for my mother, whose birthday is two days later.
When the news reported a plane had hit the World Trade Center, it was surprising, but smaller planes had hit skyscrapers like the Empire State Building before, only harming the errant pilot. But when another plane struck, I think everyone in America shuddered, too.
It all went down so fast. Unbelievably fast. I watched at home in horror, like everyone else. Eyes saw it, but the mind couldn’t comprehend it. We all watched in one morning thousands of people lose their lives, and two monoliths tumble to the ground in Manhattan. When Mayor Rudy Giuliani called for 30,000 body bags it seemed likely that so many would die.
I visited the World Trade Center three times: 1979, 1983 and 1999. The latter date was a trip to New York planned by my parents to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary. My father had insisted we dine at Windows on the World. Suddenly a lot of that came back. The subway trip to the building and the shops that lined it; changing to another elevator to get to the restaurant; arriving and being seated; the faces of the waiters and maitre’d. Even the bathroom and its attendant spilled back in memory. I thought of the bar area of the restaurant with its magnificent view of the Statue of Liberty. We asked if our daughters, 11 and 14, could go into the bar – briefly – to see it. They acquiesced. The restaurant was a magical place, especially at twilight, with New York City in all its glory laid out, twinkling and throbbing.
And it was all over in a morning.
The death the terrorists gave the people at that restaurant was one of the most gruesome imaginable. As Summer and Swan relate, “death came slowly at Windows on the World.” They choked on the air, tried to get on the roof to escape, but all were doomed.
We could watch, and did, on TV as people jumped to their deaths. The authors tell the poignant, horrible details; how a woman jumper pulled on her skirt in modesty as she descended; how one employee of Cantor Fitzgerald was found months later, “intact in his suit and tie, seated upright in the rubble.”
It all seemed to come out of nowhere, too. Who hated us so much and why?
People are still asking that question.
Yesterday in The Commercial Appeal, clergy were asked to share their thoughts of that day. It was discouraging to read some of the responses, especially that of Father Al Kirk. He said, “what if, instead of invading Afghanistan, we had invested funds and people power into building up the tribal areas and cities in which our enemies flourish? What if we had invested even a fourth of the cost of our military response in refurbishing our own infrastructure or in creating jobs? I suspect the mood of our country would be different than it is today.”
It’s easy to take that tact. The “what ifs” are a dreamer’s way out. Very few of us like the thought of war or want to waste our time hating an enemy. But Father Kirk and others overlook the self hatred many in Islam have for themselves, not us. More Muslims have died at the hands of other Muslims than have been hurt by us.
The terrorists were overcome by evil, evil inflicted on themselves as well as us. You have to have some amount of self loathing to kill yourself as the hijackers did. You have to have allowed evil to take you over, as the hijackers did. There isn’t any compromise with evil, unfortunately. It must be ended.
If you’ve forgotten how you felt that day, read this article. Few of us felt, that day, that things could ever return to normal for us. For the most part, they have.
It isn’t because we ran from the enemy. We ran to the enemy, as the firefighters did in the Towers.
September 13 is the date for the special election in New York to replace sext crazed Congressman Anthony Weiner. Dems outnumber Republicans 3 to 1, yet Republican candidate Bob Turner is closing in on Democrat David Weprin. The ninth Congressional seat is also the former one of Senator Chuck Schumer. Democrats are trying to paint Turner as a Tea Part/Medicare/Social Security slashing extremist, but former New York Mayor Ed Koch has crossed the aisle to make robo calls for Turner denying it. Interesting race shaping up.
Kelly Price sat down at Cafe Eclectic to talk to fellow Memphians about his vision for the future.
The candidate who hopes to unseat Barbara Swearengen Ware in District 7 for the City Council seat is alarmed that our leaders have not expressed any ideas for moving the city into the 21st century.
“I would love to have Mayor Wharton sit down and outline where he wants Memphis to go. Unfortunately, he hasn’t nor has any other person in local government,” Price said. Price pointed to the need for jobs in the city, the need for technological advancement and the need for straightening out our failing schools.
He also feels that our officials need to work together. He expressed disappointment at the council approval of a budget he thinks just kicks problems down the road.
These are some of the themes he will be discussing in his campaign. The election is October 6.
Price will inform us of future events and fund raisers.
If he could unseat the indicted Council woman Ware it would do a lot to help turn this city around.