Friday, May 08, 2009

Definition of an Idiot: Feherty Should be Fired!!!!

   /ˈɪdiət/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [id-ee-uht] Show IPA
1. an utterly foolish or senseless person.
2. Psychology. a person of the lowest order in a former classification of mental retardation, having a mental age of less than three years old and an intelligence quotient under 25.
1250–1300; ME < L idiōta < Gk iditēs private person, layman, person lacking skill or expertise, equiv. to idiō- (lengthened var. of idio- idio-, perh. by analogy with stratiōtēs professional soldier, deriv. of stratiá army) + -tēs agent n. suffix

1. fool, half-wit; imbecile; dolt, dunce, numskull.

Sometimes I hear things that make me stop and think. Last night was one of those times. Cassie, our four year old daughter, had gone to bed, so we were no longer watching Fairly Oddparents.I was thanking G-d for non-animated television, when we Elizabeth and I flipped the channel to Countdown with Keith Olbermann.

This is what I saw....

We have friends that are of all political persuasions, some actually farther to the left than yours truly. I know, I know that is really hard to believe. Here is my question, when did political disagreement for many become justification for the disappearance of civility?

New Library in Gentilly

May 8, 2009

Christina Stephens
Louisiana Recovery Authority

State of Louisiana Approves Nearly $400,000 for Temporary Library in Gentilly Neighborhood of New Orleans

BATON ROUGE, La. - The state of Louisiana has approved $395,000 for a three-year lease on a commercial space that will provide a temporary library in the Gentilly neighborhood of New Orleans, allowing the city's Office of Recovery and Development Administration to access federal Community Development Block Grant funds needed to implement the project.

The city plans to locate the temporary library within walking distance of the damaged Norman Mayer Library at 2098 Foy St., which will be rebuilt with FEMA funds.

The funding comes from the Long Term Community Recovery Program, a $700 million pool of federal CDBG money set aside by the Louisiana Recovery Authority and Office of Community Development to help local governments rebuild and implement long-term recovery plans.

After sustaining major damage from Hurricane Katrina, the Norman Mayer Library in Gentilly remains shuttered. As a result, local residents do not have easy public access to critical information and resources that could help improve their lives and those of their families. The proposed temporary library will offer basic library and internet services, as well as provide community meeting rooms.

The CDBG disaster recovery funds will be used to pay monthly rent at the commercial space for three years.

LRA Executive Director Paul Rainwater said, "The temporary library in Gentilly will serve as a community center where friends and neighbors can reconnect and exchange important recovery information while their main library is under construction. Investing disaster recovery funding in this project will give residents access to much-needed information that can help guide their rebuilding efforts with best-practice models for success."

"Libraries are critical to the life of every community," said Mayor C. Ray Nagin. "As we move forward with rebuilding libraries throughout our city, citizens will be well served by temporary facilities where they can obtain books and other materials, obtain important information and take an active part in their neighborhoods."

The state's LTCR program supports implementation of local governments' long-term recovery plans in the most heavily impacted communities in the state. In 2008, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development approved LRA's request to reallocate $500 million in CDBG dollars to the program, bringing to $700 million the total amount of long-term recovery funding available to the parishes. Funds are distributed among the parishes through the LRA/Office of Community Development according to a formula based on estimated housing and infrastructure damages inflicted by hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

In total, the LRA has allocated $410,720,016 of CDBG funding to the city of New Orleans for LTCR projects.

Created in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita in 2005, the Louisiana Recovery Authority (LRA) is the coordinating and planning body leading the most extensive rebuilding effort in American history. The central point for hurricane recovery in Louisiana, the LRA works closely with the Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP) and partners with state and federal agencies to oversee more than $20 billion worth of programs, speed the pace of rebuilding, remove hurdles and red tape and ensure that Louisiana recovers safer and stronger than before.


Saturday, May 02, 2009

Is the Republican Party Imploding?

My Momma always said, "Be careful what you wish for... you just might get it". Politicians, of both parties, have fallen into this trap numerous times over many years. An example that many of you might be aware of occurred in the great state of Louisiana. The powers that be, created the open primary system for the Pelican state in 1978. I learned, although I do not know where, that this was done in an attempt to permanently hobble the the state Republican Party. The belief was that enough of the local voters identified as Democrats that the top two vote-getters in most elections would be Democrats. Needless to say, that projection ended up being faulty, and if anything, the Republican Party of Louisiana has been stronger in the last 30+ years than at any other point since the end of Reconstruction.

This story should be a lesson to the Republican Party, and it definitely would benefit the Democrats if they paid attention to it as well. The Democrats have been out of power for the better part of eight years and therefore, are eager to push forward legislation that will shape the nation in a way they see fit, they should be careful of over-reaching. While the Republicans are so shocked at being out of power, that they are in the process of "purifying" the party. Neither of these are good ideas.

Just this week, Senator Specter left the Republican Party in the hopes of holding his seat in the 2010 race. It appears from the outside to be a remarkably selfish decision. He basically said that this was done in an attempt to keep his seat and it was not a remarkable problem with the stances of the Republican leadership. Michael Steele, the head of the Republican National Committee, basically responded by saying something akin to (I'm paraphrasing) 'He wasn't a real Republican anyway'. Uh Mr. Steele when you are the head of a party that is down to 21% of people calling themselves Republicans, you are not in a position to be choosy.

The Republicans appear to be reacting to the last two election cycles by acting like a spoiled 6th grader, (I teach 6th grade, I know what they sound like). This is a quick version of the Republicans response from my perspective. For the sake of this example the Republicans are Johnny.

Teacher: "Johnny you are wrong. Everyone else in the class says you are wrong, you got the wrong answer. Here is the correct answer."
Johnny: "But Teacher this was the right answer for my brother when he took the test last year..."
Teacher: "Johnny, We have new information"..
Johnny: "But, it was the right answer when my parents took the test."
Teacher:"Sorry. You are wrong."
Johnny:"I don't care what you say I'm sticking with that answer.".

The Republicans inability to accept that they can not just be a party of the White South seems to be a problem for them. The Northeast is almost without Republican representation at this point, and considering how the Hispanics are voting recently the West and Southwest are definitely uphill battles for a party that proclaims at least through its actions to have disdain for immigrants that are currently one of the fastest growing voting blocs in the country. The Republicans need to recalibrate their policies, rather than just saying effectively, "I'm still right I don't care what everyone else says.

For at least a few years, the Republicans talked about a permanent majority and how the Democrats would be relegated to the opposition for years to come. Less than 10 years ago Karl Rove talked up the permanence of the Republican majority in both houses of Congress and the Executive. The belief being put forward was that Republicans had the right mix of social beliefs and governing philosophy. Obviously, this permanent majority was about as long lasting as some of my favorite T shirts from college. The governing strategy by the Republicans in Congress and the White House was that of exploiting narrow majorities, and winning by the slimmest of margins. In this way the Republicans were able to advance their agenda without the need of anything close to a significant majority.

Recently, The Democratic Congressional Leadership passed a rules change that will allow them to pass a Universal Health Care Bill without achieving sixty votes to gain cloture. The Republican Leadership responded with such howls of protest that you would think that their favorite pets had just been killed. Senator McConnell talked how this was a travesty of the Senate rules, and that it was a bad precedent for the future. He forgot to mention that the Republican Leadership had used the same tactic less than 10 years ago to pass the Bush tax cuts.

I hope the Democrats take a lesson from this. Do not get too comfortable in that position of power that yall now hold. Those individuals that put you in power in the last 3 cycles, can very easily push you out of power in a year or two. This is still a Democracy of the people, for the people, and by the people.

To be honest, I'm happy that President Johnson was wrong to the tune of 5 years.