Thursday, July 24, 2008


Since my professional work requires me to attend numerous conferences this week I find myself staying in New Orleans, Louisiana yet again. I believe I have been in this city at least four times now so before and after Hurricane Katrina to be exact.

While I did not tour the infamous 9th Ward which three years after the hurricane damage is still a disaster area based on the TV and newspaper coverage I have seen this week. Now I am not a heartless bastard but my personality is wired to take action so I was a bit shocked when I read today's local newspaper. One article stated that the 9th Ward Homeowners Association recently held a fundraising event where some of the proceeds would be used to "mow the weeds a this empty lot........." which included a photo of the homeowners association president. What? Is the poverty so bad in this part of town that three years after the hurricane no one has a working lawn mower with gasoline or if nothing else a corn knife or machete so these weeds could be cut? I can tell you if we lived there our father would have my brother and I outside cleaning up as soon as the hurricane water receded. We would not have sat on our porch holding signs that said, "FEMA come help us!" Help us? Hell, if agencies like FEMA did not consume our tax dollars we would all have more money available to better recover from disasters.

One final observation on the "hurricane recovery" media coverage this week . Former presidential/vice presidential candidate and former US Senator from NORTH CAROLINA (yes, that is important so don't forget) John Poverty Edwards held yet another press conference to announce his "green house building project" as part of an overall poverty elimination project. Reminder -- when he announced his run for president in 2007 Senator Edwards held the event in the 9th Ward of New Orleans so let's encourage him to take the next logical step. Become a full time resident of Louisiana so you can run for political office OR better yet -- start a business and employ some people instead of having what appears to be weekly press conferences.

Just don't move to Minnesota -- we can handle our challenges Mr. Edwards,


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