30 September 2009
America has “no intellectual class” and is “rotting away at a funereal pace. We’ll have a military dictatorship fairly soon, on the basis that nobody else can hold everything together. Obama would have been better off focusing on educating the American people. His problem is being over-educated. He doesn’t realise how dim-witted and ignorant his audience is. Benjamin Franklin said that the system would fail because of the corruption of the people and that happened under Bush.”
read the whole thing---it's a wide-ranging interview with somebody that tends to speak his mind
Posted by tomitron at 9/30/2009 06:24:00 PM
29 September 2009
28 September 2009
still a lot of discolored water going over the 150-year-old dam on big creek at roswell mill but it looks ok --- the ruins of ivy mill are covered with silt and nastiness from the flooded sewer treatment plant just across the creek --- the rubble on the ground outlining the old mill buildings has almost disappeared ---
paper mill was high enough it didn't really flood but run-off from off-park property up the hill has breached the stacked-stone retaining wall in four places ---
Posted by tomitron at 9/28/2009 10:31:00 PM
27 September 2009
of course ken burns is now being accused of being a socialist with his latest project, on the national parks, which is debuting tonight:
This is a season of insane and stupid discussion about government,” says Burns, “If you begin to label things socialism when no one knows what they are talking about, then the military is socialist, and the guy collecting trash and firemen are socialists. Government activity can’t be reduced to a Rush Limbaugh-like stupidity. It’s much more elastic, vibrant, pliant, deserves more intelligent thinking. The government gave us the Emancipation Proclamation, the New Deal, the GI Bill. And the national parks.
Posted by tomitron at 9/27/2009 04:41:00 PM
26 September 2009
BIG CREEK, Ky. — A part-time census worker found hanging in a rural Kentucky cemetery was naked, gagged and had his hands and feet bound with duct tape, said an Ohio man who discovered the body two weeks ago.was it meth or "patriotism" that killed him? whatever, this is what makes much of rural amurica a skeery place to go --- even if you're not a revenewer or something --- crazy cousin joe is all about how the national park service is nuttin but an agent of big gummint --- the rangers at cape hatteras and other places won't go certain places with their uniforms on because of the animosity --- that's part of what we have gotten for thirty years of "government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem"
Posted by tomitron at 9/26/2009 12:32:00 AM
25 September 2009
Of course they are screaming 'socialism'. They've been doing that since the 50s at least. They're not talking about economic redistribution of wealth - they never have been. They've been talking about redistribution of privilege this whole time. They called MLK a communist because he wanted blacks to have the same rights as whites, and to them that was a redistribution of the privilege that whites had 'earned'.
i'm not sure that i ever thought about it quite like that, but he's got a point for sure ---
Posted by tomitron at 9/25/2009 02:55:00 PM
24 September 2009
23 September 2009
22 September 2009
the loaf has a good description of the whole situation to date
In the days since then, McLendon has closely followed news coverage of the raid, read the police reports and listened to last week’s police news conference in which embattled Chief Richard Pennington seemed to half-defend, half-apologize for the incident. But like many metro Atlanta residents, he’s left with a number of nagging questions: Why did police feel they needed to take down the club with the kind of force usually reserved for busting meth labs? Why did officers seem to act so unprofessionally toward the Eagle’s customers, none of whom was arrested? And, was the whole thing really just about sex?
Posted by tomitron at 9/22/2009 06:18:00 PM
21 September 2009
Just as happened at the Beatrice, once a bunch of well-to-do residents with a lawyer get a bee in their bonnet, a venue is doomed. The cops, the health department, the fire department and rest of the regulators will start showing up to enforce how many people can be in the club, how loud it is, that the coolers are at the right temperature, that the limes are cut a certain way, or any of the million draconian rules that govern how a bar operates. If the residents have enough money and tenacity, they can hold out forever and eventually drive the place out of business, dispute its liquor license, or have it shuttered for good.
Posted by tomitron at 9/21/2009 10:31:00 PM
woah! nancy creek and ptree creek setting record floods --- nancy beating the 1971 record by a foot! all over north georgia, 100-year records for 24-hr rainfall totals are being broken---parts of douglas, paulding, and gwinnett counties have had more than 20" since friday----this is woodward way which always floods, but not like this---more aerials at the link
Posted by tomitron at 9/21/2009 06:04:00 PM
20 September 2009
18 September 2009
our contact with "reality" may be more tenuous than we think ----
SEATTLE – It was seven weeks ago that Edward Lighthart walked out of a Seattle park with no idea of who he was and how he got there, the apparent victim of a bizarre case of amnesia.
npr did a piece on him, too, when it first happened
Posted by tomitron at 9/18/2009 06:31:00 PM
Posted by tomitron at 9/18/2009 06:00:00 PM
yeah, some of the stuff they've been busted for is dumb, but a lot of that is the result of the right wing's vendetta against them --- acorn has done a lot of good and now they're getting pilloried --- people can get awfully exercised over a few tens of billions getting into the hands of poor (black) people while untold gazillions are transferred to haliburton, blackwater, and rich (white) people in general and it's all goodness and light
If you walk into this scene out of the lily-white suburbs, you're likely to be shocked at first by what you see. Things are turned upside down. The role models are felons, the clean kids are working the black market. But, spend some time there and you'll quickly adapt and begin to see how there is dignity and fight and pride and ambition and resourcefulness and tremendous faith that sustains these communities in the face of enormous odds. Anyone who had ever seen what I have seen would never, ever, cut off all funding for ACORN or use them as a symbol of black dependency and corruption.
Posted by tomitron at 9/18/2009 05:24:00 PM
17 September 2009
a lot of people are still paying attention --- this from towleroad:
We are further disappointed in the sluggish response from the Atlanta City Council, and particularly with the abject silence of Mayor Shirley Franklin.
Posted by tomitron at 9/17/2009 09:36:00 PM
16 September 2009
A new Public Policy Polling survey of New Jersey voters has some shocking results: 21 percent either believe or aren’t sure that President Obama is the Anti-Christ. Twenty-nine percent of Republicans and 35 percent of “conservative” voters also either believe he is or aren’t sure.
that's just depressing
Posted by tomitron at 9/16/2009 07:36:00 PM
15 September 2009
southern voice has posted the (anonymous) complaints that led to the raid on the eagle---what a bunch of bullshit and typical of the tactics of the midtown-ponce security alliance---one of my straight co-workers lived near there until recently and agrees it is ridiculous
Posted by tomitron at 9/15/2009 10:12:00 PM
the city used to be covered up with wires---slowly but surely they're going away---the trolley lines came down forty years ago and now most of downtown and midtown has been rewired to eliminate the "telephone poles"---
that's a view north on peacthree from sixth street c. 1950
guinness very much likes being able to admire margaret's porch up close
Posted by tomitron at 9/15/2009 06:51:00 PM
you really have to watch this---just god-awful---this is a direct byproduct of rush limbaugh and fox "news" demagoguery
you gotta love the reporter---so very non-threatening while he methodically exposes their ignorance and/or bigotry
Posted by tomitron at 9/15/2009 05:43:00 PM
14 September 2009
read the whole thing and then try to argue it was a good use of police resources
Allegations of sex and illegal adult entertainment taking place at the Atlanta Eagle led to a three-month undercover operation that prompted the Atlanta police to raid the gay leather bar, Police Chief Richard Pennington said today in a press conference.
“Due to the lighting of the room I was unable to see any sex acts happening . . . observed two men in what appeared to be a sexual act . . . . I could not get a good visual due to the extreme low light in the room. I also observed a black male in his underwear dancing on the main bar of the establishment."
and there's something a little creepy about how much went into their "documentation" of the so-called criminal activity
Posted by tomitron at 9/14/2009 09:20:00 PM
among the way-too-many things that i've scanned lately is this map, drawn by my g-grandfather in 1936 and said to be the first map of clayton county to show land lots, roads, creeks and rivers, and local landmarks on the same map---he was nearly 80 when he did it, but he kept on drawing and writing for another decade or more---the original is in the georgia archives
Posted by tomitron at 9/14/2009 08:22:00 PM
13 September 2009
andrew sullivan has a thought about the eagle raid and another one in memphis
Maybe these reports, after the near-death of another gay man attacked in a gay bar raid in Texas, are just random data points. Or maybe, the Age of Obama is leading some to express their rage at the changing face of this country. Gays, as so often, are among the first victims. Vigilance is necessary. For the first time in 16 years, the South does not have a native president in the White House. For the first time in 45 years, we have a Democrat not from the South in the White House. In trying to understand the passion and hysteria and anger out there, this may be worth taking into account.
Posted by tomitron at 9/13/2009 09:05:00 PM
this is part of steve brodie's response to my letter
. . . The incident at the Eagle has raised an acute awareness of the issue of police leadership that I have been addressing for several years now and is a cornerstone of my campaign. The impact and concern we have seen in the community is a direct result of ineffective leadership at the very top of the police department. The leader sets a tone and is responsible for communicating with the citizens; there has been complete failure in this case and too many others.
This investigation and action at the Eagle clearly demonstrates that the leadership of APD does not understand the priorities of the community. Atlanta needs police leadership that actually knows the community and does not lead based on politics, personal relationships or perceptions. We need leadership that will take action to reduce personal crimes, home invasions etc rather than appeasing the influential and politically connected with the pursuit of victimless crimes. Atlanta is in a public safety crisis; we need to get our priorities in order! . . . .
Posted by tomitron at 9/13/2009 02:27:00 PM
12 September 2009
a board member of the midtown neighbors' association raises a lot of questions:
As a business owner and a resident of Midtown. And like you and many like you, I have concerns regarding the misdirected allocation of police resources regarding the incident at The Eagle.
Since the investigation is complete, anyone requesting a GA open records request can obtain a copy of the reports, including the original email.
it is my understanding, from my friends at APD that three months ago an email of complaint was sent to the mayors office. It is highly unusual for the mayor to become involved in vague allegations of 'sexual activity' in a back curtained room of the establishment. DUH, it is a men's leather bar.
What astounds me is the mayor's office ordered an investigation that resulted in THREE MONTHS of undercover work at the facility. What also astounds me is the Red Dog Unit was deployed. Now, Red dog is strictly a drug unit. There was never a drug investigation. Red Dog answers to...the mayor's office.
I'm in Kwanza Halls district so I got no dog in the district hunt. But what stinks to me is, who is in favor with the mayor in Zone 5 that has motivation to get the gay community riled up over APD or Red Dogs alleged 'derogatory comments'?
It could be the incumbent council member AF. AF has a friend in Peggy Denby, notorious bulldog when it comes to giving gay night life grief. AF also endorsed Liz Coyle, as does Denby. If the gay vote splits from Brodie, she gains the upper hand if there is a runoff, or takes the majority.
Why would the gay voters (who are really pissed at APD and anyone associated with them) split from Brodie, you ask?
Because a few weeks ago Mr. Brodie got the endorsement of the Police Union, MUCH to the chagrin of the incumbent and her protege Liz.
It seems that someone decided they, after 3 months had enough 'evidence' and chose Thursday night to pull the trigger on the raid. Raid turned up pretty much nothing, my sources tell me no one was in that notorious back room at the time of the last visit by the undercover officers. There was no reason to stage the raid at 11:30.
Except, Mr. Brodie was making the rounds at the gay events that evening for campaign stops, and was rumored to have a scheduled stop at The Eagle around 11:00PM.
Why would the incumbent go out of her way to do this to Mr Brodie? Well, remember how contentious the election was, losing by 6 votes, the lawsuit, etc. I bet she does have some sour grape for Mr. Brodie.
.... this all stinks of politics. It does not make sense to my source at APD (she says they simply do not waste time with such unfounded allegations, especially after at least one visit by undercover!)
The 90 day investigation seemed a big waste of taxpayer money. If it took 90 days to find out someone gets a BJ or a spanking in a curtained room in a gay leather club, what does that say about the resource utilization or worse, the political tooling rampant within our city government?
Posted by tomitron at 9/12/2009 11:41:00 PM
the sembler company, post parkside, the fifth group restaurants (ecco, south city kitchen, la tavola, and el taco), midtown tire, and the midtown neighbors associaton all need to hear from us for their sponsorship of the midtown ponce security alliance and their tactics of harassment and intimidation --- likewise keep atlanta beautiful, of which the inestimable peggy denby is ex. director
Posted by tomitron at 9/12/2009 10:25:00 PM
cousin john chimes in:
Chief of Police Richard J Pennington
226 Peachtree St. SW
Atlanta, Georgia 30303
September 12, 2009
Dear Chief Pennington,
Chief Pennington, this raid on the Eagle last Thursday night just reeks. It smells of the same pattern of harassment that the Gay and Lesbian community has seen for decades in this city. We had hoped, no--we had believed that the time for this type of systemic harassment had passed with the advent of enlightened administrations like the Franklin administration, but apparently this is not so.
I don’t patronize the Eagle, and haven’t been in any bar for a decade or more but I remember the way it used to work. Every so often, just coincidentally before a city-wide election, there would be a push to “clean up” the city of “undesirable” elements. I saw this in the 1960’s and 1970’s when the targets were bars such as Mrs. P’s and the Joy Lounge on Ponce. Then, as now, the point is harassment and humiliation of the patrons. The point is to portray the establishment as a “problem” establishment. Very convenient when the time for liquor license renewal comes up.
But wait, I thought we had a LGBT liaison in the APD to work with the community and the bar owners to try to fix the real problems and avoid the harassment. I guess I was just mistaken. Where was the liaison? Why were police officers, including apparently homophobic officers sent--in such great numbers--to deal with a dancing license violation. What kind of judgment is that?
This is the APD reacting to anonymous complaints from Midtown groups that just want to remake Midtown into a sanitized, glamorous, all-white, enclave. And I say that as a white man who knows these folks. They hated the Buckhead Village nightlife because it was too young and too ethnic, They now want the gay people who do not fit their image out of Midtown. They are also targeting black nightclubs in the Midtown area. What’s next--will it be Castleberry hill or West End?
I understand why these groups want to control the city and remake it into their lily-white, country club dream. I really do get it. I’ve seen this my whole life. You may remember what harassment was like. I just don’t understand why you would countenance such a thing. I don’t believe for a minute that the Mayor does. Again, where is the LGBT community liaison in the APD? You guys have failed big time.
John W. Hoard
Cc: Mayor Shirley Franklin,
City Councilman H. Lamar Willis
City Councilwoman Joyce Shepard
City Council Chairwoman Lisa Borders
Posted by tomitron at 9/12/2009 06:51:00 PM
11 September 2009
that was actually one of the reasons given for the police raid on the eagle last night---i am pissed even though i never set foot in the place, mainly because i think it is part of an ongoing pattern of harassment by neighborhood vigilantes wanting to "clean up" midtown, which generally means getting rid of anything that is too black or too gay---i wrote the city council rep and got a reply in less than three hours, although she may be part of the problem----more here
To: Fauver, Anne
Sent: Fri Sep 11 16:12:00 2009
Subject: law enforcement
Dear Ms. Fauver:
As you are no doubt aware, the Atlanta Police Department conducted a raid of the Eagle, a gay bar on Ponce de Leon Avenue, yesterday. I am profoundly disturbed at the reports of the raid, especially the totally unacceptable treatment of patrons and staff alike by the APD. According to the source, the raid was either the result of a “noise complaint” or because there was dancing without a permit. Are you kidding me? Dancing without a permit? And if it was only a noise complaint, why then were the patrons and staff forced to the floor?
In my opinion, all of this is just a petty excuse to shut down a legal commercial establishment that a few self-appointed vigilantes in the neighborhood have decided to include in their ongoing campaign of harassment which they call “cleaning up Midtown.” They’ve tried, I hope unsuccessfully, the same thing with the SPI Club at 1021 Peachtree, a campaign that has had a disturbingly racist undertone. I don’t patronize the Eagle nor will I patronize the SPI Club, but as a Midtown resident who has lived in the city for over forty years, I think that this sort of harassment needs to be stopped.
The City and APD must show some discretion in responding to groups like the Midtown Ponce Security Alliance, whose overwrought rhetoric and puritanical approach to law enforcement does not represent the views of all or even a majority of Midtown residents.
Major Williams is the superior over the APD unit that went to the Eagle. Major Williams is a good friend of our community.
She is investigating the incident and I know from experience that she is very thorough. Let's withhold judgment until we know more.
Thanks for your email.
She will keep you posted.
Posted by tomitron at 9/11/2009 11:04:00 PM
last night cousin carol and i went to the botanical garden, which is open until 10 on thurs. through september --- the conservatory was crazy with the frog noises in the dark --- then tonight it's the quarry garden and swan house at the history center --- fine way to spend an evening
Posted by tomitron at 9/11/2009 09:38:00 PM
09 September 2009
as if you needed another one
rep. joe wilson (r-sc) heckling the president in the house chamber
Posted by tomitron at 9/09/2009 11:10:00 PM
as if you needed another one
In a recording of a legislative hearing, Duvall can be heard talking about a recent sexual escapade with a woman he says is 18 years younger. "I'm getting into spanking her," Duvall is heard to say on the videotape. The other man asks if she likes it, too. Duvall responds: "She goes, 'I know you like spanking me.' I said, 'Yeah, that's 'cause you're such a bad girl.'"
it gets worse---much worse---and, as one might expect, he was all about supporting "traditional marriage" in the battle over prop8
Posted by tomitron at 9/09/2009 06:21:00 PM
08 September 2009
At this point, my concern is less with Palin (just another nutter) than with McCain and the GOP. If they were reckless enough to foist Palin on us without even minimal vetting, and if they could browbeat the media into not asking certain questions out of deference, then we are in a very dangerous situation. The cynicism of the political and the media elite, and their aversion to the truth when it might impede their interests, requires vigilance.i think it's going to require something more than vigilance --- especially now that the supremes are poised to open the floodgates for corporate political contributions --- between all of that and the insane health-care "debate," i've been wanting to crawl under my bed and stay there --- or at least quit watching the teevee and stop reading blogs
Posted by tomitron at 9/08/2009 05:49:00 PM
07 September 2009
06 September 2009
the botanical garden is winding down its summer show, but wonderful as always --- in keeping with the multicultural theme of the weekend, it seemed as if a majority of the visitors there did not speak english today --- in addition, south asians of some persuasian were having a wedding, complete with some sort of ceremonial tug-of-war on the lawn between the bride's and groom's families at the end ---
Posted by tomitron at 9/06/2009 10:10:00 PM
it has definitely been a multicultural weekend in atlanner --- the baseball crowd for the braves and the college football crowds from virginia, alabama, and carolina for two games made marta a zoo yesterday --- there was the educated bookish crowd in decatur for the book festival, which touts itself as the largest independent show in the country --- there was the young urban black gay pride crowd, which brought a whole lot of people to the park this evening --- and there was the dragon con wierdo crowd, which we had to go back to gawk at some more this afternoon --- must have been fun although some of the young'uns were looking a little tuckered out
Posted by tomitron at 9/06/2009 09:26:00 PM