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"Condos can go for $1 million. Big retailers like Old Navy, Starbucks, Payless, Staples and Blockbuster are ubiquitous. On 125th Street near Fifth Avenue, bulldozers clear a vacant lot for an upscale hotel.
Old-timers worry that redevelopment will wipe out mom-and-pop stores and affordable housing, along with the area's distinct character. But boosters say commerce and construction bring jobs, safe streets and new cultural and retail venues that complement famous landmarks.
Certainly Harlem's appeal to tourists has never been stronger. Double-decker sightseeing buses cross 125th Street every few minutes. Japanese visitors queue up at Sylvia's, the famous soul food restaurant."
The last time I was in Harlem was the summer of 2003 and I found it interesting how many non-black people were walking around. Young white couples with their baby strollers, Hispanics, white professionals eating out and a lot of Asians running local stores. Life goes on and the only thing we can count on is that everything will change. I just hope they can maintain some of what was/is great about Harlem. Finding the real Harlem amid a changing landscape - CNN.com
More on how the state loves to do some killin'. State Without Pity - New York Times
It is not that Texas sentences people to death at a much higher rate than other states. Rather, Texas has proved to be much more willing than others to carry out the sentences it has imposed.
"The participants in Texas’s death penalty process, including the governor and the pardon board, are more enthusiastic about moving things along than they are in many states. Texas’s system also contains some special features, like the power of district attorneys to set execution dates. Prosecutors are likely to be more eager than judges to see an execution carried out."
Areas with more crime with get more police officers. What a novel idea! City Is Doubling Police Program to Reduce Crime - New York Times
"Every new police officer in New York City will be sent onto the streets of some of the city’s toughest neighborhoods as part of a broad anticrime operation that the authorities say has helped produce historic drops in crime, the city announced on Wednesday."
N.J. Orders HIV Testing For Pregnant Women - washingtonpost.com "New Jersey this week launched one of the most ambitious efforts in the country to control mother-to-child transmission of HIV, making screening tests mandatory for all pregnant women in the state beginning next year."
"A campaign is underway to ban affirmative action in five states already embroiled in debates over illegal immigration.
Efforts are proceeding in Arizona, Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma to put initiatives on November ballots that would end programs to increase minority and female participation in government and education.
The push is led by Ward Connerly, a California management consultant who successfully ran similar campaigns in California, Washington and Michigan. It is part of Connerly's effort to ban race- and gender-based policies nationwide.
The initiatives will add to the racially charged atmosphere in state elections, says Michael Kanner, a political science professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder. All five states have had big increases in their Hispanic population since 2000, leading to racial tensions and debates over illegal immigration."
Affirmative action may be on ballots - USATODAY.com
Foreigners - Caryl Phillips - Books - Review - New York Times: "These two experiments were a reminder that even if the multi ethnic crowd on the London tube is ever more difficult to distinguish from the one on the New York subway, British self-identity and British history remain somehow fundamentally white. For"
U.S. Disparity in Executions Grows as Texas Bucks Trend - New York Times "This year’s death penalty bombshells — a de facto national moratorium, a state abolition and the smallest number of executions in more than a decade — have masked what may be the most significant and lasting development. For the first time in the modern history of the death penalty, more than 60 percent of all American executions took place in Texas."
This would be funny if it wasn't so scary that this crazy b*%$ was in such a position of power.
"Hoover wanted President Harry S. Truman to proclaim the mass arrests necessary to “protect the country against treason, espionage and sabotage.” The F.B.I would “apprehend all individuals potentially dangerous” to national security, Hoover’s proposal said. The arrests would be carried out under “a master warrant attached to a list of names” provided by the bureau."
Michelle Malkin » Open borders principal: “We’ve been bloggercized”
Michelle Malkin » Open borders 101
When people say that enforcing immigration laws won't do anything, don't believe them. I've been blogging for some time about illegals packing up and leaving because they can't find jobs and renters won't rent to them. Here's more:
Michelle Malkin » Shocker! Enforcing immigration laws results in illegal aliens leaving
In Arizona, the case against enforcing new state immigration laws went all the way to the federal courts and was upheld. The laws will go into effect January 1 and in a state like Arizona, that is a HUGE deal! Judge Supports Arizona Law on Immigrants - New York Times
"The law calls for suspending the license of an employer found to have knowingly hired an illegal worker, and revocation for a second offense."
Sad story about a cop who came to this country with his parents when he was 9, illegally, about to be deported. Dream Turns Nightmare: Milwaukee Police Officer to Be Deported - New York Times
"But when Mr. Ayala-Cornejo filled out recruitment papers, he used the name of a dead relative who had been a United States citizen. He had to, Mr. Ayala-Cornejo says, because ever since his parents brought him here from Mexico when he was 9, he has lived in the country illegally. The life that Mr. Ayala-Cornejo carefully built here, including more than five years with the police force, is to end at noon on Saturday, when, heeding a deportation order, he will board a plane bound for the country he left as a child. "
"Merrill Lynch became the latest Wall Street bank to grab a financial lifeline from a foreign government, agreeing on Monday to sell $5 billion of new stock to an investor from Singapore and a smaller stake to a domestic firm, as the fallout from mortgage mess continues to spread."
I found this article interesting. I want to see this happen. Black Holes are really amazing. Where does everything go? Jet From Supermassive Black Hole Seen Blasting Neighboring Galaxy - washingtonpost.com
The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), which had filed a class action lawsuit in July against a dozen major
subprime lenders alleging institutionalized racism in lending practices, amended the complaint on Dec. 18. to add six additional lenders (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, et al vs. Ameriquest Mortgage Company, A Corporation, et al. July 11, 2007, amended Dec. 18, 2007, Los Angeles Federal Court, Case No. SACV 07-0794). The new defendants are CitiMortgage, Suntrust Mortgage, GMAC Rescap, JP Morgan, National City and First Horizon.
"Indian and Chinese soldiers are at present playing war games in the Yunnan Province in the most southwest region of China (bordering the countries of Vietnam, Laos, and Burma), a first-ever such military exercise. Heralding a dramatic reversal in diplomatic relationship between the emerging two super powers that had fought a bloody war in 1962. This joint military exercise has a great symbolic value in the context of the improving Indo-Chinese relationship which have thawed considerably since 1993."
I've been going nuts without by Jon & Steven fix 4 nights a week. I'm sure its been killing them to be off during all this political nonsense going on. Just the candidate holiday commercials alone. Can you imagine how Jon would treat Mitt's "lying" about his father march with MLK? Colbert would have a field day with Huckabee's Cross/Bookshelf message.
"The City Council voted unanimously to greenlight the demolition of the city's four largest public housing developments, saying they are too damaged by Hurricane Katrina to allow residents back into them.
But many in New Orleans, including former residents of the developments, say they fear the local and federal governments will not guarantee similarly affordable housing be built in their place -- calling the demolition an effort to move poor people out of the city."
First, the buildings were ridiculously damaged, so there is no point to arguing whether they should be demolished. Second, what is a city's obligation to poor people that want to live there? I realize that I am far from poor, but there are places in DC that I would love to live, but I can't afford it. There are condos downtown that go for $500K for 800 square feet. They have priced me out, but I have alternatives. Poor people don't.
New Orleans doesn't want its poor to come back because they bring crime and suck the public resources. This is a city that can't afford anyone who isn't a consumer and taxpaying worker or business owner. It needs homeowner property taxes. The poor are either on welfare or their wages are so low they aren't contributing barely any tax to the economy and aren't consuming on a significant scale. What little money the city has should go towards encouraging more of these people to move to New Orleans.
"Maryland's two major political parties stepped up efforts yesterday to overturn an obscure change in state policy that denies about 50,000 17-year-olds the right to vote in the coming presidential primary. For decades, Maryland residents could register at age 17 as long as they turned 18 by the date of the general election in November. The law was interpreted to mean that a 17-year-old could vote in a primary election."
"Blacks are arrested for alleged minor offenses far more frequently than whites in some suburbs where police aggressively enforce nuisance laws to fight drugs and violence, a newspaper reported Sunday.
The Philadelphia Inquirer said its yearlong investigation showed that such police tactics "can and often do go awry, resulting in the arrest of many innocent people and creating resentment and racial strains in community after community.''
Many police chiefs in suburban Philadelphia say nuisance laws such as those regarding noise, loitering, disorderly conduct and jaywalking are an indispensable tool in their quest to rid the streets of serious criminals. Targeting small crimes helps discourage larger ones, some say."
"Morgan Stanley posted its first quarterly loss ever Wednesday after taking an additional $5.7 billion write-down related to subprime mortgages. The investment bank also said it would sell a $5 billion stake to China Investment Corp., a sovereign wealth fund, to shore up its capital."
"The measure, tucked into a giant federal spending bill, puts the District on the same level as the 50 states, at least when it comes to the popular coins showcasing home-state icons such as mountains, birds, race cars and fiddles. The D.C. quarter is due in 2009, with a design yet to be determined."
"The economy expanded at its fastest rate in four years during the third quarter, the government confirmed Thursday, though it has slowed sharply since then and is expected to keep slowing in 2008."
"On Monday, the party’s influential Women’s League narrowly threw its support to Mr. Zuma, despite Mr. Mbeki’s record of promoting women to top government posts."
"The U.S. Border Patrol says its agents have been assaulted 250 times along the Mexican border since October 1, a number that represents a 38 percent increase from the same period last year. Officials say the rising violence indicates smugglers are frustrated and more desperate as it has become more difficult to cross the border illegally. Agents have been attacked with rocks, vehicles and Molotov cocktails."
"Clinton was virtually tied with Illinois Sen. Barack Obama in last week's New Hampshire poll, along with several other recent surveys. But in the Wednesday poll, the New York senator now has a 12-point lead over Obama -- 38 percent to 26 percent."
President Vladimir Putin told a party congress Monday that he would accept the prime minister's post if his longtime protege is elected president, guaranteeing Putin an ongoing heavyweight political role in Russia. Ending speculation that he had another surprise up his sleeve in this tumultuous election season, Putin also said he would not—as had been widely expected—seek to strengthen the post of prime minister at the expense of Russia's powerful presidency.
Rush asked his listeners if America wants to see a woman aging before our eyes, referring to Senator Clinton if she became President. Hmmm...I wonder if I look in his archives will we find him asking the same question about any of the male presidents who clearly aged about 25 years while in office. Oh yeah, I keep forgetting. They're men. It's totally different. Jackass.
In the end, this works in Hills favor. Just like Rick Lazio did when he ran against her for Senator in 2000, when they pile too much of the personal attacks, she gets sympathy, they look like assholes and it all turns into votes for her. While a man is worth his character, accomplishments, wealth, intelligence, etc., to many men a women is only worth what she looks like and this kind of statement will likely make a lot women, especially those who have been on the wrong end of that double standard, sympathize with Hillary.
"North Korea agreed on Friday to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula, provided that the United States reciprocates by normalizing relations between the countries."
Finally, a show I actually love is coming back. LOST & 24 are my favorite two shows. I actually love Ugly Betty too, but my top two favorites are both shows that were delayed until 2008 and have suffered because of the writer's strike. While 24 looks like its going to skip this season altogether, the producers of LOST are going to take a shot and show what they've got. Let's hope the studios give the writers what they want (and deserve), so we can at least have a season of LOST.
So I punked out. Even though I am officially acting buck wild now that I have finished exams, I'm too much of a scaredy cat to go see it. I saw the original movie "OMEGA MAN" when Charlton Heston did it on TV a few years ago. With special effects, I can only imagine how intense it was. I will go see National Treasure and Denzel has some movie about a Student Debate competition that looks interesting.
Deadline Hollywood Daily » Will Smith Can Now Say ‘I Am Legend’: $77M For Best December Debut Ever! ‘Chipmunks’ Open To Cheeky $44M Wkd
"The service, called Knol, which is short for knowledge, would allow people to create Web pages on any topic. It is designed to include features that permit readers to submit comments, rate pages and suggest changes. However, unlike Wikipedia, which allows anyone to edit an entry, only the author of a “knol,” as the pages in the service would be called, would be allowed to edit. Different authors could have competing pages on the same topic."
"A Brewer man’s alleged threats to shoot members of Bangor’s chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People has scared the group into meeting in secret for the last couple of months and has caused them to cancel their Kwanzaa celebration scheduled for December.
"It has been very scary," Joseph Perry, president of Bangor’s NAACP chapter and a Searsport resident, said Tuesday.
The hate crimes division of the Maine Attorney General’s Office filed a civil complaint in Penobscot County Superior Court against Kendrick Sawyer, 75, of Brewer on Nov. 2, based on threats he allegedly made against the local civil rights group."
HBO Films has acquired rights to "Game of Shadows: Barry Bonds, BALCO and the Steroids Scandal That Rocked Professional Sports," a book by Mark Fainaru-Wada and Lance Williams, the San Francisco Chronicle reporters who broke numerous stories about the nutrition company accused of distributing illegal steroids to athletes including Bonds, Oakland A's and New York Yankees first baseman Jason Giambi and Olympic gold medal sprinter Marion Jones.
"If the government has its way, the moldering hulks of the St. Bernard public housing projects soon will be rubble. That has been the government's plan for more than a year — and for more than a year it has been locked in a legal battle with housing advocates here who want officials to fix up apartments waterlogged by the flooding that followed Hurricane Katrina rather than tear them down. Unless the vast system of public housing is reopened quickly, advocates fear many former residents will never come back." Katrina's wrath lingers for New Orleans' poor - USATODAY.com
Giuliani shifts tactics, goes on offensive - USATODAY.com
Ultimately this is a good thing. People will have a better opportunity to see him for who he really is. And by a "good thing" I mean he's a jackass.
"As hundreds of thousands of inmates head home from prison each year, city, state and federal officials are launching an unparalleled number of programs to help keep ex-offenders from committing new crimes. Spurred by concerns about crime rates ticking upward in some cities and incarceration costs that have spiraled out of control, communities are taking steps as basic as making sure parolees have valid state identification cards and as innovative as offering tax credits to businesses that hire ex-offenders to help them get back on their feet."
I watched about 15 minutes of sports yesterday, which is 10 minutes more than I usually do, because of the Mitchell Report. I wanted to know what people are saying. This is what I got.
It's not complete. It's just one report covering a few clubhouses, so there is probably more and it isn't fair just to punish the ones in this report.
There will be no punishment because its all circumstantial evidence. This could be a turning point in baseball if the league will actually take the action they said they would.
MLB Commissioner Selig pretty much called the player's union to the floor for a fight.
Mitchell Report: Steroid woes a 'collective failure' - USATODAY.com
Say It Ain’t So, Roger, and Barry, and . . . - New York Times
"Animal-rights activists have added the massive agency to their list of targets, sending a letter to Secretary Michael Chertoff that criticizes government scientists for conducting painful experiments on chimpanzees.
"I urge you to put an immediate end to this completely unnecessary abuse of chimpanzees," Ingrid Newkirk, president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), wrote to Chertoff. PETA set its sights on Chertoff because his department oversees work done under a government program called Project BioShield, a multi-agency effort to improve medical countermeasures that could help protect people during biological, chemical, radiological or nuclear terrorist attacks."
I'm not a fan of PETA because I think they're nuts, but I hate experimenting on animals. I've seen real live video of cosmetic companies spraying poison into the eyes of helpless chimps. I even saw a video of one scientist beating the life out of a helpless, tied up chimp with a baseball bat to test the limits of head trauma. He was screaming in pain. It's really sickening. I understand that it might be necessary to protect the lives of humans, but is this the only way to do it? I would hope that we've advanced beyond this barbaric practice.
"A record number of soldiers — 109 — have killed themselves this year, according to Army statistics showing confirmed or suspected suicides. The deaths occur as soldiers serve longer combat deployments and the Army spends $100 million on support programs."
While Harvard already gives a full free ride to kids from families that make less than $60K a year, I guess the school wants to make sure that slightly well-off people don't feel slighted. Harvard to Aid Students High in Middle Class - New York Times.
"Harvard University announced on Monday that it would significantly increase the financial aid it offered to middle-class and upper-middle-class students, seeking to allay concerns that elite colleges are becoming too expensive for even relatively well-off families. The move, to go into effect in the next school year, appears to make Harvard’s aid to students with household incomes from $120,000 to $180,000 the most generous of any of the country’s prestigious private universities. Harvard will generally charge such students 10 percent of their family household income per year, substantially subsidizing the annual cost of more than $45,600."
I don't know about you, but all this time I was thinking that Thompson was going to be the Obama for the right, but he just never lived up to the hype. I'm still disappointed and hopeful he can turn it around. The Republicans Find Their Obama - New York Times
"COULD 2008 actually end up being a showdown between the author of “The Audacity of Hope” and the new Man from Hope, Ark.?
It sounds preposterous, but Washington’s shock over Mike Huckabee’s sudden rise in the polls — he “came from nowhere,” Robert Novak huffed last week — makes you wonder. Having failed to anticipate so much else, including the Barack Obama polling surge of days earlier, the press pack has proved an unreliable guide to election 2008. What the Beltway calls unthinkable today keeps turning out to be front-page news tomorrow."
Not good news. Teenage Birth Rate Rises for First Time Since ’91 - New York Times. What do you think the reason is?
"The birth rate among teenagers 15 to 19 in the United States rose 3 percent in 2006, according to a report issued Wednesday, the first such increase since 1991. The finding surprised scholars and fueled a debate about whether the Bush administration’s abstinence-only sexual education efforts are working."
An interesting take on adoption and giving birth from an adopted woman who is pregnant with her first child. Blood Ties and Acts of Love - Relative Choices - New York Times Blog
"But for the first time, I and my husband -– who happens to also be adopted from South Korea -– will, through our child, know what it is to be connected with someone who also shares our genes. And I must admit there is something delicious about finally being a part of the majority."
Interesting article that says race and intelligence have no genetic relevance. It's all in what you do from day one. Some people aren't even aware that the diet you feed your kid can affect their intelligence. So many of our kid are eating crap all day; nothing is feeding their brains.
All Brains Are the Same Color - New York Times
"Interventions at every age from infancy to college can reduce racial gaps in I.Q., sometimes by substantial amounts in surprisingly little time."
"President Bush, directly engaging the man he publicly called a “tyrant,” wrote a letter to North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-il, in which he held out the prospect of normalized relations with the United States if North Korea fully disclosed its nuclear programs and dismantled its nuclear reactor, administration officials said Thursday."
Destroyed CIA tapes and Congressional Investigations. Just the stuff liberal movie makers love. In addition to the great news about Iran not being as much of a threat as we thought (although I think they are still a much, much bigger threat than Iraq ever was), the CIA is turning into Hollywood's muse. C.I.A. Destroyed 2 Tapes Showing Interrogations - New York Times
C.I.A. Was Urged to Keep Interrogation Videotapes - New York Times
Destruction of C.I.A. Tapes Cleared by Lawyers - New York Times
"Actor Danny Glover has filmed a TV ad asserting that the Bush Administration is destroying the Constitution through the use of torture, rendition, and other war-on-terror tactics. Mr. Glover urges viewers to “rescue the Constitution.” It’s hard-hitting. But a lot of people and organizations — including our Editorial Page — have been saying much the same thing.
And Ron Zook was named Big Ten Coach of the Year, so kudos again.
And who are you married to again? Yeah, so...
Losing Ground In Iowa, Clinton Assails Obama - washingtonpost.com
"By a margin of 51 percent to 49 percent, voters shot down a referendum that included 69 proposed amendments to the 1999 constitution, according to Monday reports from the National Electoral Council. In all, 9 million of Venezuela's 16 million eligible voters went to the polls."
Venezuela's Chavez loses constitutional vote - USATODAY.com
"Rudy Giuliani is one of those people who doesn’t handle power well. The more important he becomes, the more impossible he becomes."
"Jobless men pay $500 bribes to join the police. Families build houses illegally on government land, carwashes steal water from public pipes, and nearly everything the government buys or sells can now be found on the black market. Painkillers for cancer (from the Ministry of Health) cost $80 for a few capsules; electricity meters (from the Ministry of Electricity) go for $200 each, and even third-grade textbooks (stolen from the Ministry of Education) must be bought at bookstores for three times what schools once charged."
"After 27 years as a science teacher and 9 years as the Texas Education Agency’s director of science, Christine Castillo Comer said she did not think she had to remain “neutral” about teaching the theory of evolution. "It’s not just a good idea; it’s the law,” said Ms. Comer, citing the state’s science curriculum."
"The Boise-based Idaho Statesman identified four men who have gone public with claims they either had sex with the veteran senator or that he made sexual advances toward them in incidents dating back to the 1980s. The men describe their encounters with Craig, R-Idaho, in detail. But the Statesman said it had no physical evidence to back up its reporting and described the claims as "he-said, he-said allegations."
processing centers in St. Albans, Vt., and Laguna Niguel, Calif., that are part
of Citizenship and Immigration Services, the agency responsible for deciding
visa applications and citizenship petitions. Some 280 of approximately 1,000
contract workers in the two centers will receive lower wages after a new
contractor, Stanley Inc. of Arlington, Va., takes over tomorrow."
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© 2004 Angela Winters