Monday, November 06, 2006

A Confederacy of Carlsons?

Margaret Carlson (via The Daily Howler):
ROSE: Where were you on the war?

CARLSON: I was, give diplomacy a chance. [Brightening] I was with Colin Powell the whole way along! Whatever Colin Powell—

ROSE: Oh, so whatever Colin— You know. OK.

CARLSON: Yeah. Whatever Colin does, I’ll go with.

The New Orleans City Council (via The Times Picayune):
When the ordinance came up for a vote late in Thursday's long and exhausting meeting, Councilwoman Shelley Midura said she didn't know what the fund was and asked for an explanation.

Council President Oliver Thomas offered to explain to Midura the purpose of the NOBC, or New Orleans Building Corp., a public-benefit corporation created to find ways to enhance revenue from little-used city properties.

Midura replied that the explanation didn't tell her what the Paragon Economy Fund was.

Thomas, one of three council members who serve on the board of the Building Corp., admitted he wasn't familiar with the fund, but he noted that the ordinance was supported by Mayor Ray Nagin's administration.

Neither Sean Cummings, executive director of the Building Corp., nor any other administration official was on hand to explain the ordinance, but Thomas moved to approve it anyway, and the other six members agreed to go along.

A vote to establish the NOBC Paragon Economy Fund is no vote for the Iraq war, but Margaret Carlson is just a pundit that nobody in Washington takes very seriously. Oliver Thomas is president of the city council and, arguably, the most respected politcal figure in the city. At the time of the Iraq War resolution, Colin Powell had an unquestioned reputation for integrity and sound judgement; Ray Nagin has never been known for his sound judgement, and his reputation for integrity is beginning to come into question. But, yeah. Whatever C. Ray does, he'll (Thomas) go with.

After a busy weekend, I'm too tired to go into much detail, but Saturday's N.O. Politics column deserves attention for more than just a great headline:
No clue? Council votes anyway

Though Eggler allows that the council has a very heavy workload, he seems to find its failure to ask even the most obvious questions as shameful as I do. However, after reading Eggler's column and watching a few reruns of council meetings on cable, I 'd like to suggest an emergency appropriation to replace the city's broken fax machines. I often get the distinct impression that many of the council members first read proposed ordinances when they're introduced -- at last Thursday's meeting, Cynthia Willard-Lewis actually asked what UNOP meant. I don't blame Ms. Willard-Lewis, with a functioning fax machine she would have been faxed a copy of the proposal in advance and already known the answer. It's possible that she asked the question rhetorically, she went on at such length about how much she cares about Broadmoor, even though it's not part of her district, that I stopped paying attention. Funny thing is, I have much more mixed feeling about Willard-Lewis than some of my fellow bloggers; she's not one of the two council members that I consider totally hopeless. In all seriousness, it does seem like the council should refuse to consider any non-emergency proposals that aren't submitted far enough in advance for the council members to read and consider.

Though Eggler doesn't mention it, I have to wonder if the vagueness of the ordinance is intentional. The ordinance does seem to involve cty property and the mayor does have a second job as a real estate developer. It would certainly seem to be a reasonable question of a mayor/real estate mogul.

If you only glanced at the article, read all the way through to the end of the column. Eggler also seems concerned that the council will just rubber stamp the mayor's budget proposals:
Of course, even when the conference does meet, it generally approves the revenue estimates prepared by the administration with little if any dissent.

It goes beyond garbage collection.

Are you willing to identify the two "hopeless" councilmanic dolts?
James Carter is no dolt, he was pretty sharp to convince eveybody that he would help bring about change. I couldn't explain why, but I have a better impression of Willard-Lewis than the other Cynthia.
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