Saturday, September 29, 2007

THIS is a Democrat Party I'd Consider Rejoining

It's about time they grew a pair...

If Bush vetoes the legislation and Congress cannot override the veto, Democrats said that they will reintroduce the bill every six weeks to three months until Bush signs the bill or Republicans vote to override a veto. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said, "If the president refuses to sign the bill, if he says, with a veto, 'I forbid 10 million children in America to have health care,' this legislation will haunt him again and again and again" (Washington Post, 9/28). -Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report

Thursday, September 27, 2007

'Member What We Got Last Time We Voted for the Guy Promising to Restore Honor to a Public Office?

Just give conservative Republicans some value laden words that invoke a sense of morality and self-righteousness, and got a vote. Don't bother with the truth or anything important.

Responding to a Boasso ad on Jindal's record as Secretary of Health and Hospitals, Jindal's narrator alleges that "Walter Boasso and the corrupt crowd are desperate to keep power. First they attack Bobby Jindal for his Christianity. Now they're lying about Bobby's service to Louisiana." The narrator mentions the word corrupt twice more, and the ad ends with the written tag line: "The corrupt crowd. They won't stop until we stand up."

Yet another ad, which debuted late Friday, features a doctor lauding Jindal for cleaning up the department a decade ago. "The corruption crowd didn't like that much," he says. "That's why those guys are attacking Bobby Jindal right now." In just 30 seconds, the ad uses the word corruption four times.

Now, as far as I've heard, neither Campbell nor Boasso has been accused of pocketing illicit cash, unlike a previous gubernatorial candidate or two. Nor has anyone alleged that Boasso has done anything that Webster might consider corrupt. [Stephanie Grace, Times-Picayune]

Friday, September 21, 2007

Another Day in the Big Easy

It occurred to me, as an afterthought, that this excerpt from an email I wrote today to a friend/colleague might not make such a bad post for today:

Another day here in the Big Easy: Nagin nowhere to be found, racial tension in north LA (Jena), a woman known as "Mama Dee" is running for election to the council-at-large seat vacated by our latest indicted politician (even more interesting considering her history of being escorted out of council meetings for screaming that everything they do is "racist," including of course her managing to get herself kicked out of chambers), and the powers-that-be at the Army Corps of Engineers are rediscovering prayer as a tropical storm warning was just issued for the area. At least the weather is gorgeous, which we don't get to say too often.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

When No One and Everyone Is To Blame

I don't know why exactly I was relieved to learn the Manganos were acquitted of negligent homicide charges, but I guess it has something to do with erring on the side of not ruining peoples' lives for no good reason. Until I read more about the case just before trial started, my impression from media reports and Foti was that these heartless people just left senior citizens in their nursing home to die. After finding out that the Manganos stayed at St. Rita's with their children and grandchildren through the storm, my whole view of them changed. Mabel Mangano can't swim. We all knew the storm would be bad. We were all equally shocked to find out just HOW bad. Katrina's surge and the levee failures ushered in horrors beyond what most of us were really capable of understanding before August 29, 2005.

On the other hand, I can't totally let them off the hook. Were they responsible for those people who drowned? Yes. Fourteen hundred+ people died, so alot of us made a lot of mistakes and wrong decisions. As one juror said: "Why were these two people singled out when so many people made so many mistakes?"

My views have nothing to do with whether the state or the parish officially called for mandatory evacuation or not, or whether the Corps is to blame for levee failure. I'm not happy or sad for the Manganos or for those who died and their families or for you and me, because this disaster and our actions during those tense, horrific days, like so much in life, can't be shoved into the black-or-white, right-vs.-wrong, guilty-or-innocent mentality that pervades our answer-seeking, justice-must-be-done culture. Many tragedies do not happen because people are greedy or evil or reckless but because tragedies happen. Shortsightedness, foolheartedness, and poor judgment are human nature; and they may be to blame, but do they a criminal make?

Sunday, September 02, 2007

And Now...For Some Much Needed Peaceful Reflection

For lack of time, or wasteful use of it, I haven't had the chance to share my thoughts on Dubya's K+2 visit to us. As it turns out, everybody -- from Shelley Midura, to James Gill, to my personal blogger friends, and even the BR Advocate editorial staff -- more or less shared what I probably would have.

I'd be remiss, however, if I didn't share at least one thought I had about Bush and his visit.

Come to think of it, that pretty much sums it up for me.