Once More Into the Breach

Finding Nonsense and Beating it Sensible

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I used to watch TV news and yell at the box. Now I jump up from the couch, sit at the computer and begin to type laughing maniacally saying "Wait until they read this." It's more fun than squashing tadpoles



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Sunday, May 21, 2006

Nagin Reelected in New Orleans


Here in the Wash. DC Area we had for the longest time one Marion Barry as Mayor of the Nation's Capitol. Mayor Barry was one of those politicians who made one wonder how he stayed I office. He was not just a jerk like your run of the mill politician, he was a stupid jerk. It seemed that not a day went by that the news didn't report some antic of the Mayor's followed by a statement so ridiculous that one knew he couldn't be that stupid by accident. It never failed that a big snow storm would paralyze the city and Marion Barry was vacationing in the Bahamas, or he was found carousing with some floozy like what many thought was a career ending act, caught at a hotel smoking crack with a strange woman uttering his most famous quote "The b***h set me up." Yet year after year he was Mayor of the city. Even after his release fom jail on the drug charge he won reelection.

All good things come to an end and so it was with Marion Barry's terms as Mayor. All the corruption of the city and the incompetence of its employees became too much and new blood was brought to the mayor's office. Things got so bad that people were suggesting the Congress could do a better job! High hopes for change were soon dashed as people realized that the problems of the nation's capitol were beyond the responsibility of one person. Nothing changed except the lack of entertaining non sense coming from the Mayor's office. Barry tried to make a comeback to no avail. He found a seat on the city council but age and life style have taken their toll. Now he just gets pulled over for traffic tickets and has little to say.

For those who have forgotten or have never had the pleasure, here are just a few of Marion Barry's most memorable quotes.

"I promise you a police car on every sidewalk."

"If you take out the killings, Washington actually has a very very low crime rate."

"I read a funny story about how the Republicans freed the slaves. The Republicans are the ones who created slavery by law in the 1600's. Abraham Lincoln freed the slaves and he was not a Republican."

"Bitch set me up."

"I am clearly more popular than Reagan. I am in my third term. Where's Reagan? Gone after two! Defeated by George Bush and Michael Dukakis no less."

"The laws in this city are clearly racist. All laws are racist. The law of gravity is racist."
My purpose in this reminiscence is not just for your entertainment but to draw a parallel with a mayor of another city who could become another Marion Barry. None other than Ray Nagin who has just been reelected Mayor of New Orleans. Mayor Nagin would have remained an anonymous mayor of a failing city had it not been for Katrina. The crisis of the hurricane laid bare his ineptitude and threw the spotlight on his every statement. Most famous are his proclamation that God was punishing America with hurricanes and his promise to make New Orleans a Chocolate city. Many thought the citizens couldn't possably return Nagin to office, but they did. The big difference is Marion Barry was entertaining because he was a stupid jerk, Ray Nagin is just a jerk. But if New Orleans is going to stay a messed up place for the foreseeable future, it might as well have Mayor Nagin at the helm so we can snark at his latest imitation of a Jackass.

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