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Passions in Poetry

It's Official. Nothing will ever surprise me again...

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Balladeer
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0 posted 05-21-2006 12:50 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

NEW ORLEANS - Mayor Ray Nagin, whose shoot-from-the-hip style was both praised and scorned after Hurricane Katrina, narrowly won re-election over Lt. Gov. Mitch Landrieu on Saturday in the race to oversee one of the biggest rebuilding projects in U.S. history.

By MICHELLE ROBERTS, Associated Press Writer

Balladeer
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1 posted 05-21-2006 12:59 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

According to The New  Orleans Times Picayune there were 50,000 vehicles ruined in Katrina and
abandoned by their owners.

The largest auto crusher east of the Rockies, K&L Auto Crushers of Tyler, Texas offered to pay the City of New Orleans $100.00 per vehicle, 'as is and where is', an estimated $5 million net to the city.. They agreed to bring in 5 to 10 portable crushers, work 6 days per week and complete the job in 15 weeks.   Mayor Nagan knew better how to do the job and refused the offer, saying the city would do the job themselves. It seems that now it will cost the City $23 million to complete the job. The vehicles are still there today instead of being cleaned out 5 months ago.  By doing it J&L's way the City of New Orleans would net $5 million.  Doing it mayor Nagan's way costs the city $23 million for a net cost to the City of New Orleans of $28,000,000. This is the same mayor that wants The United States taxpayers to give $50 billion to New Orleans and let him rebuild a "Chocolate City" his way without any oversight or any control.   Brit Hume reported this on Fox News.

....and so it begins. Good luck, all.
serenity blaze
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2 posted 05-21-2006 01:16 AM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

I could have used a hug, m'self.

I am gratified only tho, that Nagin said he will welcome the help of Mitch Landrieu, et al.

And there was a special report just now, there was an explosion at the Norco refinery...this is a nightmare, lived daily.

(I still have yer chocolate factory t-shirt. If you want it.)

I dunno what to say, Mike.

I watched those numbers jump when they tallied the displaced voters in...

Nagin said, "It's over."

I love New Orleans so much, I pray he is wrong.

I'm a little upset tonight.
serenity blaze
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3 posted 05-21-2006 05:13 AM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

It's 3:32 here, and I've been sitting here, once again wondering what people think about while they are in the voting booth. But then, I'm sitting at home, wondering that. So I'm trying to keep that in consideration...

My daughter asked me why this election was apparently important to the world. 'Cause it is true, the eyes of the world was upon us, as this scrambled city attempted a legitimate election, as the population is scattered across the nation, concentrated in our newly born sister cities of Houston and Baton Rouge. I told her that nothing like Katrina had ever happened before--the only thing comparable would be the earthquake that nearly decimated San Francisco, and that they did not have nearly the poverty problems that New Orleans has been facing for three-four-five? decades now. I told her the whole world was watching because New Orleans was being given a whole lot of Federal money and they wanted to make sure we didn't spend it on [loose wimmen] amd whiskey.(I used that analogy--she's fifteen, she was brought up by me and understands the metaphor.)

I was visably upset when the voting percentages totaled did a topsy turvey swing to Nagin's favor, but I wasn't surprised. She asked me then if I thought Mitch Landrieu was "our guy"--and I had to tell her no, I didn't think so, but I was willing to say yes to "anything but Nagin".

She asked me why I hated Nagin and I told her that I thought the man was a coward--he abandoned his own headquarters during a civil emergency and did nothing but wait for someone else to come in and tell him what to do. I told her that a guy named David Brinkley, he wrote a book, and that if she should ever read that book, watch for misinformation, because there is plenty of it there, but he did ask Mayor Ray Nagin why he did not leave the 17th floor of the Hyatt Regency and go down to address the people in distress gathering at the Superdome, and the New Orleans Convention Center, and that I thought his answer was ludicrous because his only explanation was:

"I didn't have a megaphone."

I told her that would be like, um, if she had a serious injury and I tried to explain to someone I didn't do anything because I didn't have some neosporin and a band-aid.

But what I know, and what I make sure she knows, and my son knows, is that New Orleans didn't make the spirit of our people--our people made New Orleans what it is.

What we witnessed tonight was an historic election, simply because it was so close. That racial divides were overcome--and people jumped both party and skin color divisions and voted their hearts.

I told her it was the first "gentleman's duel" I had ever seen in a Louisiana election. And I meant that. There is mud a-plenty to be had, and we, the people, here in the Metro New Orleans area, having been advised to "avoid dirt" as bulldozing commenced in toxic sludge, managed to do just that.

Mike? This was so close, and I promise you, in previous years past, Landrieu wouldn't have had a spitball's chance in hell. What I like about Nagin, is that while is not exactly the "go-getter" we needed last summer, he is certainly astute enough not to isolate himself from the people who genuinely who love New Orleans. That means, I pray, that for once, we will be together, black and white, working toward recovery.

And be patient with me while I cheer myself up, because as I admittedly begrudgingly congratulate Mayor Nagin on his victory, I am reminded of a story of Thomas Edison.

I'm not sure if it's true or if it was just some altruistic speech my science teacher told me in the eighth grade, but the story is as follows--

Thomas Edison, worked tediously on the first prototype of the lightbulb, and upon completion, cooling of glass, etc, he gave it to a young novice to carry from one portion of the laboratory to the testing portion--up a flight of stairs.

You guessed it maybe? The novice dropped the first and one and only lightbulb.

Thomas Edison had a fit of course. But proceeded to make another, and the completion of that was faster after having the trials and errors of his previous mistake. When it was completed, he could have opted to carry it himself.

He could have wrapped it in sheepskin.

He could have done a lot of things different.

But what he did was call the same boy, and handed it to him in trust.

Someone asked him why he did that, and he answered, "Because I know there is no one else who would be more careful than he."



I am an idealist.

I like to think that story is true.

And I'd like to think it will be proven true again.

All we can do now is hope, yes?

My beloved city is on life support--and I apologize if that is an inconvenience to the rest of the country, and she may yet have a dance or two left in her yet.

Why just the other day, my mother in law and I danced to Etta James on the porch. grin

We both hurt ourselves, but dammit, we danced.

*peace*



(and now it's 4:10) *wink*

serenity blaze
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4 posted 05-21-2006 05:13 AM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

4:13, now.

Damned filters.
Local Rebel
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5 posted 05-21-2006 10:11 AM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

Hey... I lived through Ray Blanton -- nothing has surprised me for nearly 30 years.
serenity blaze
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6 posted 05-21-2006 10:15 AM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

grin

I bet I could...

Balladeer
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7 posted 05-21-2006 09:24 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Your beloved city need not apologize to anyone, serene one. I love that city and want it to make it all the way back. It's easy for me or anyone to sit here and pass judgement on Nagin but I can't know what went through the minds of the residents in re-electing him. Perhaps they consider him either the lesser of two evils or, as you, someone who has at least gone through it and knows what to do differently next time.

...but Edison's assistant made a mistake trying to do the right thing. Nagin did absolutely nothing and never even attempted to do the right thing. As you pointed out, he  tucked himself away while the city went down the tubes, didn't try to save anyone, didn't try to comfort or support anyone....zip. Would he be different the next time? For the city's sake - and yours - I hope so, since you're all stuck with him.

Thanks for dancing...and for letting me  know. As long as feet keep rythym to the music, there's hope.
Mistletoe Angel
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8 posted 05-22-2006 12:59 AM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel

I myself am disappointed that Nagin has been re-elected, as I am convinced, as with the likes of Governor Blanco, FEMA officials and the Bush Administration, that each of these representatives from each level of government didn't give it their all to reach out to the victims and those who were stranded as the city was within natural disaster, as well as the considerable hours following the calm of the storm.

What's especially sensitive about both the Katrina tragedy and this election is that it has reminded us deeply of the racial divisions that remain visible and felt now. It is in my opinion that the Hurricane Katrina fiasco had nothing to do with race, and also that Nagin is incompetent and thus undeserving of re-election. Nonetheless, while roughly 2/3 of whites strongly believe the stalled Katrina efforts had nothing to do with race, roughly 2/3 of blacks do believe so. Moreover, most whites voted for Landrieu, while most blacks voted for Nagin.

This is indeed a most sensitive, polarizing issue, and in no means do I want to sound as though I'm insensitive to the beliefs and opinions of those across racial lines who do sense some sort of leadership traits in Nagin, and insist race had something greatly to do, even got in the way of management of this disaster. My opinions remain as they are, but I actually have not been surprised from the beginning of how this election turned out, simply by recognizing these cultural polarizations.

Sincerely,
Noah Eaton

"If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other"

Mother Teresa

serenity blaze
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9 posted 05-22-2006 05:41 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Disappointed isn't the word.

I am not happy either--my community is in another parish, but our economy is entirely dependant on New Orleans making a strong and swift recovery.

I have to have Hope--if I didn't have that I would have nothing at all. And I pray that big businesses will not be scared away from investing in our future by the outcome of this election.

So I'm not so naive Mike. I understand what this signaled to the rest of the country. I was hoping that those able to vote in this election would understand as well.

So if I'm seem to be silly painting a happy face on a dire situation--just count me in on the team that is running a good will publicity campaign for the city. Our very lives depend on it.
Mistletoe Angel
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10 posted 05-22-2006 06:08 PM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel



Karen, if anyone can harness and hold true the beauty and good will of New Orleans, that truly is individuals like yourself, dearest friend, yay!

Unfortunately, New Orleans needs someone who doesn't think and operate among either party or racial lines, but someone who recognizes that it's that good will, that diversity, that IS New Orleans. Nagin is the contrast to that description in my heart, and I don't think Landrieu met that description either.

Karen, I wholeheartedly pray that your city can re-unite again and these cultural chasms can again be closed together, for it's exactly this sort of good will that has ensured the relevance and survival of New Orleans these many years, through the hardships of civil war to the sorrows of yellow fever. I have faith that this same spirit will ensure that New Orleans will live long after the aftermath of this heartaching natural disaster, but it is certainly up to the perserverance, hope and altruism of those like yourself to make that faith take shape.

Sincerely,
Noah Eaton

"If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other"

Mother Teresa

inot2B
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11 posted 05-26-2006 10:52 PM       View Profile for inot2B   Email inot2B   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for inot2B

Well, I wasn't happy to see Nagin win, but now that he has, lets see what he will do different this hurricane season.  It is such a shame that so many parishes depend on what happens in New Orleans.
 
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