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Massive Fire Prompts Evacuation of Entire City in Canada

A huge wildfire in Alberta, Canada has forced the evacuation of 80,000 residents.

Back in 2005, I lost a home to fire….A total loss. It was devastating to myself and the family. So I can really sympathize with the poor folks in Fort McMurray, even though I’ve never been there, or to that part of Canada. Sad…

The fire apparently has reached some homes and businesses. Her a Super 8 Motel and a Gas Station are destroyed…

The latest report from the Fire Chief –

 

 
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Posted by on May 4, 2016 in General

 

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Cracks in the Wall – Louisiana Sheriff Schools Fellow Republicans…Bats**t Crazy!

This is the Sheriff of Jefferson Parish, Louisiana – a Republican. Ran across him post-Katrina when working on trying to get the systems back up, when he worked for Harry Lee, the former Sheriff. He is a bright guy, and at least to my limited impression of him – a straight shooter. He is well educated and intelligent.

What Sheriff Newell Normand represents is the growing faction of the Republican Party who is getting tired of the same old tired answers, and massive tax cuts leading to debt resulting in massive cutting of community services run up in just about every state where there is a Republican majority in the legislature…And hobbling his state, Louisiana after Bobby Jindal’s disastrous governorship. What Jindal and his fellow Republicans have done to the state following bankrupt Republican orthodoxy are in some ways worse than Katrina.

Yet another sign that the poisoned Kool-Aid isn’t going down anymore.

GOP sheriff unleashes a stunning take down of Republicans—a party of ‘cult leaders’ and ‘idiots’

Republican Sheriff Newell Normand might be a good ol’ boy from Jefferson Parish in Louisiana, but that didn’t stop him from lobbing a dose of reality at the Metropolitan Crime Commission’s annual awards luncheon on Tuesday. According to a video of the speech posted by WUVE, Normand bad-mouthed the GOP’s Beltway establishment and elected officials, notorious tax cutter Grover Norquist and called former Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal an “idiot,” equating him to cult leader Jim Jones.

Normand fully admits that he endorsed and supported Jindal when he ran for governor, but that Jindal’s leadership destroyed the state that Normand holds dear. “What a mess. Bobby Jindal was a better cult leader than Jim Jones,” he said to laughter and applause from the audience. “We drank the elixir for eight years. We remained in a conscious state. We walked to the edge of the cliff and we jumped off and he watched us and guess what? Unlike Jim Jones he did not swallow the poison. What a shame.”

Normand accused Jindal of working after his reign to rewrite history when the rest of the state doesn’t “even know what history is.” Much like other states with Republican governors like Kansas and Oklahoma, Louisiana faces a substantial budget shortfall, to the tune of $2.5 billion. Jindal is telling the world that he did a phenomenal job as governor and Normand is furious about it.

“We have to just say no!” Normand said. “I’m a Republican but I’m not a hypocrite. We have to look at ourselves critically as a party and figure out where we are and what we’re going to be about.” He admitted to the audience that he was partly at fault because he “endorsed that idiot,” but said that it was time to move toward solutions. Due to the budget problems, Normand says that the state will be cutting funding to mental health which causes more problems for law enforcement officers. The state also plans to close five state prisons that houses 8,000 inmates.

He even denounced following the policy recommendations of Grover Norquist, who makes Republican candidates sign a pledge not to raise taxes. “We better get concerned. We better wake up. We better be honest,” Normand said. “We better talk about the issues because we are going to pay the price.” He continued saying that the state cannot cut its way to a balanced budget because doing so will cut the resources necessary for law enforcement officers like him to do their job safely and effectively. “We do not need to face the stupidity of our leadership as it relates to how we’re going to face balancing this budget and talking about these silly issues because we’re worried about what Grover Norquist thinks. To hell with Grover Norquist! I don’t care about Grover Norquist!” he said to audience applause. “We’re worried about the ATR report card,” he said, referencing Norquist’s group Americans for Tax Reform.

When it comes to the Republican party in Washington, D.C., Normand wants them to stop attacking. He cited Medicaid expansion which would cover the cost for things like drug addiction and mental health that officers often witness on the streets and in prisons. “And I have to listen to my Republican counterparts talk about gobbledigook. Blah, blah blah… And I’m so sick and tired of hearing: Obama, Obama, Obama. You know how much intellect it takes to blame something on somebody else? This much!” he said holding his hand up to indicate zero. “Propose a solution. Work together.” He closed by comparing politics to being married and asked how many people in the audience refuse to compromise in their marriages.

Lindsay Graham, the Republican Senator from South Carolina puts it more succinctly…

Lindsey Graham: GOP Is ‘Batsh*t Crazy’

 

As the five remaining Republican presidential contenders battled it out in the Houston debate Thursday night, former candidate Lindsey Graham entertained a crowd at the Washington Press Club’s annual congressional dinner with his true feelings on the 2016 race. “My party has gone batshit crazy,” Graham told the crowd. The South Carolina senator lashed out at GOP frontrunner Donald Trump, adding that he thinks the billionaire will lose in the general election “because he’s just generally a loser as a person and a candidate,” he said. Making light of his own failed campaign and subsequent endorsement of Jeb Bush, who dropped out on Saturday, Graham called himself the Dr. Jack Kevorkian of the Republican primary—before putting on a Trump hat.

Read it at The Washington Post

 

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Clown Bus Update

Gradually moving from that triple decker…

To a Short Bus. Another one bites the dust!

Smoked!

Smoked!

Bobby Jindal Drops Out Of The 2016 Presidential Race

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) ended his presidential campaign on Tuesday.

“I’ve come to the realization that this is not my time, so I’ve come here to announce that I am suspending my campaign for president of the United States,” he told Fox News’ Bret Baier.

Jindal, who entered the presidential race in June, has remained near the back of the Republican pack since then. In recent months, his persistently low polling numbers relegated him to the smaller televised events (AKA the KIddie Table) that preceded each of the main GOP debates.

Republicans to Jindal, “We already got our Minority…It ain’t you.”

 

 
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Posted by on November 18, 2015 in The Clown Bus

 

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Meg Whitman – Carly FIorina “Unqualified”

Ouch! This one is going to leave a mark. Fellow CEO (former in Carly’s situation) Meg Whitman – who is credited with building EBay and is currently President of Hewlett Packard…

AND Fellow Republican…

Unloads on Republican Presidential candidate Carly Fiorina!

Meg Whitman

HP CEO Says That Carly Fiorina Is Not Qualified To Be President

“Literally having some experience in politics is probably an important criteria,” Meg Whitman says.

Current Hewlett-Packard CEO Meg Whitman doesn’t think former HP CEO Carly Fiorina is qualified to be president because the Republican contender has no political experience.

“I just think literally having some experience in politics is probably an important criteria for the highest office in the land,” Whitman told CNN over the weekend. “I think it’s very difficult for your first role in politics to be president of the United States. I think having experience in the Senate or as the governor of a state is really important. It’s just hard to be dropped down in Washington, D.C. never having experience in politics before.”

Indeed, only three U.S. presidents have landed the job without some experience in elected office. However, those three — Ulysses Grant, Zachary Taylor and Dwight Eisenhower — all served in top leadership positions in the U.S. military.

Whitman’s been running HP since 2011, when she took on the role after a run of disastrous leadership at the struggling computer maker, and she is now preparing to split the company into two publicly traded entities. She’s probably most well-known for leading eBay from a startup to a booming auction site, but she did try her hand at politics in a failed run for governor of California. That’s another thing she has in common with Fiorina, who lost a bid for senator in California in 2010.

Whitman also happens to be backing New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie in his bid for the presidential nomination. He’s not exactly the leading candidate for the role, and Whitman has declined to say who she will ultimately support in next year’s election.

Good thing Carly got that “Get out of Dodge” Golden Parachute…

The only Board I can see hiring her after her serial lies and “reality dysfunction” this election…Would be a circular firing squad.

 
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Posted by on November 2, 2015 in The Clown Bus

 

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CNBC Republican Debate…A Liar’s Conference

Once the neo-nazi slimy POS Ted Cruz opened the gate by using the conservative meme of a “liberal” MSM attacking poor, poor, pitiful conservatives…

The race was on to see who could tell the biggest whopper.

CNBC was woefully unprepared to take on the tidal wave of outright untruths and lies which spewed from the fact free Clown Bus synchopats…

Fact-Checking The CNBC Republican Presidential Debate

There were quite a few questionable claims made during the event.

Summary

The Republican candidates met once again, and we found several claims worthy of fact-checking. Here are some of the highlights from the debate:

  • Former CEO Carly Fiorina claimed that 92 percent of the job losses in President Obama’s first term belonged to women, but women — and men — gained jobs by the end of Obama’s first term.
  • Businessman Donald Trump disputed the idea that he had criticized Sen. Marco Rubio and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg for supporting H-1B visas. In fact, Trump’s immigration plan, posted on his website, is critical of both of them.
  • Trump also claimed his campaign was 100 percent self-funded, but more than half of the money his campaign has raised came from supporters’ contributions.
  • Fiorina blamed the Affordable Care Act for a large disparity in firm closings versus openings every year. But closings outnumbered firm births by the widest margin in 2009, a year before the law was enacted.
  • Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson said it was “total propaganda” to say he was involved with a controversial nutritional supplement company, but he appeared in promotional videos for the company, touting its products.
  • New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said that Social Security would be insolvent in seven to eight years. But even after the trust funds are exhausted — estimated to be in 14 to 19 years — the program can still pay out 73 percent of benefits for several decades.
  • Sen. Ted Cruz said women’s wages have declined under Obama, when in fact the latest figures show their wages have increased.
  • Rubio claimed CNBC’s John Harwood was wrong that a Tax Foundation analysis of his tax plan found those in the top 1 percent of earners would get nearly twice the gain as those in the middle. Harwood was right, and that’s on a percentage basis.
  • In the undercard debate, former New York Gov. George Pataki claimed the Iranians, Russians and Chinese “hacked” the private server Hillary Clinton used as secretary of state and obtained “state secrets.” There’s no evidence of that.
 
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Posted by on October 29, 2015 in The Clown Bus

 

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The Rain in the Carolinas

How much rain actually fell last week on he Carolinas?

A fascinating infographic from USA Today. Check out the article.

 
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Posted by on October 7, 2015 in General

 

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Fats Domino’s Piano, Like NOLA After Katrina -Still Has a Ways to Come Back

Worked on the post-Katrina recovery efforts in NOLA and Mississippi. The flooding not only killed the houses and infrastructure, but threatened to kill the spirit of a city whose residents were used to adversity.The story 10 years after is one of gradual rebuilding, but how do you knit the spirit of the town’s communities back together when so many are gone? The even bigger question though in my mind – is if we can’t even get it right in America, right in our own back yard…How exactly can we get it right anywhere else?

In terms of the Fat man’s pianos, one black, one white – one working fully, one not restore-able…Seems like a reflection of the whole city 10 years after.

The Piano That Can’t Play a Tune

If you could see Fats Domino’s piano today—white and gleaming on a pedestal at the Louisiana State Museum in the Old U.S. Mint in New Orleans’ French Quarter—you might think he had been kind enough to donate one of his signature grands to the museum for its music collection. That is, if you were unaware of the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina 10 years ago, including Domino’s home on Caffin Street in the largely obliterated neighborhood known as the “Lower Nine,” where the white Steinway once held pride of place in Domino’s living room.

Submerged in nine feet of water from a massive breach in the nearby Industrial Canal, it sat for weeks in the fetid lake that covered 80 percent of New Orleans after Katrina. Curators from the Louisiana State Museum raised $35,000 to have it reassembled and restored, and it now sits beneath a spotlight in an exhibit room as if waiting for Domino himself to sit down and play it. At the dedication ceremony in 2013, Lieutenant Governor Jay Dardanne said, “His beautiful grand piano, fully restored, will serve as the perfect symbol for Louisiana’s resilient nature and ever-evolving musical heritage.”

Well, no and yes. Despite the painstaking restoration, the white grand piano is unplayable. It is this last fact that makes the story of this instrument such a powerful metaphor for New Orleans since Katrina. It is a tale about persistence in the face of government neglect, cataclysmic disaster, and the painful incompleteness of reconstruction. More particularly, it is a lesson about the importance of preserving the material remains of the city’s past even as it focuses on the future.

These objects—some partly restored, some not—are all the more important in light of the city’s record of demolition of many significant musical landmarks, despite the recent efforts of preservation groups to turn the tide. Louis Armstrong’s birthplace, for example, was torn down in the 1960s to build a city jail. Other jazz landmarks are in grave disrepair.

The history of New Orleans music had an additional vulnerability before Katrina: The homes of the city’s musicians and writers held much of the city’s musical heritage. Letters, handwritten scores, photographs, cocktail napkins, matchbooks, and musical instruments were under the beds and in the attics of working musicians and their descendants. Most of Michael White’s enormous collection of artifacts from early jazz musicians—some 50 clarinets, reams of sheet music, reeds and mouthpieces, and taped interviews with musicians—is gone. White’s house near the London Avenue Canal in Lakeview took in water up to the roof. The only things salvaged by volunteers were some of his clarinets. “They looked like bodies,” White told me. “And the ones that were in cases looked like bodies in coffins. They weren’t really about me, they symbolized New Orleans history and culture and the present state of the culture.”

Tending to the artifacts the storm left behind, as White did, can feel restorative. And it is not the same as choosing property over people, something that does not bode well in New Orleans. “The black working class in New Orleans,” the historian George Lipsitz wrote in Katrina’s aftermath, “has long refused to concede that white property is more important than black humanity.” After the storm, neighborhood traditions like the parading of Mardi Gras Indians persisted, despite and because of the challenges of rebuilding those communities. But the preservation of cultural artifacts after Katrina, such as Domino’s piano, was something of a different job.

As show-stopping as Domino’s white Steinway grand is, it is the opposite of the first piano he played, acquired by his family in the 1930s. That piano, Domino told his biographer, was “so beat up that you could see the rusted metal through the ivory, it had been played so hard.” According to the authors of Up From the Cradle of Jazz: “The Ninth Ward blues built off of pianos and horns.” There was an old upright in just about every small music club in the Lower Ninth Ward. The white piano, on the other hand, was not even Domino’s regular instrument. Instead, it was the one that greeted visitors to the house on Caffin Street and was a favored backdrop for family photographs. The glorious grand piano testified to his rise from a part-time musician and factory worker to one of the founding fathers of rock ‘n’ roll.

Domino’s upbringing in the Lower Ninth Ward, surrounded by his Creole relatives, inflected his music. His father was descended from French-speaking African Americans who lived as enslaved and then freedpeople in Louisiana’s sugar parishes. Like many Louisiana Creoles, black and white, they had roots in Haiti. When the Dominos arrived in the Lower Nine, the neighborhood was still mostly rural, with unpaved streets, farm animals, and scarce electricity and indoor plumbing. In a recent radio show devoted to Domino, writer Ben Sandmelobserved the artist’s “Caribbean vocal style” in songs like “My Blue Heaven.” “It’s almost like he’s an English as a second language speaker. It’s a very thick regional accent,” Sandmel said. “If you listen to oral histories of people [from the Lower Nine] who recorded around that time there are a lot of thick accents and a lot of French-isms in the speech.” …The rest here

 

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