Thursday, April 26, 2007

Pittsburgh rated 'most livable city' by man who doesn't drive car. PG staffers so happy...they pee themselves!

Pittsburgh is ranked the most livable city, according to Places Rated Almanac. Former Post-Gazette editor John Craig can die a happy man.

The Trib just could't resist the cliches, suggesting that Pittsburghers "party like its 1985," which was the last year the area was ranked first. " Break out the Iron City and pierogies. The almanac's 25th anniversary edition has ranked us No. 1 again."

Is there an emoticon for eye-rolling?

Here are some of the findings of this scientific survey. Compared to 378 metro areas [they must count places like Jefferson City, MO] Pittsburgh ranks:
90th in economy
131st in climate
21st in recreation

I guess they didn't rate a city's roads, politics, or fiduciary responsibility. Forgive my grumpiness. I think I broke my rear axle on Negley Avenue this morning.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Goin' Dahn Arahnd Tahn

The PG's architecture critic Patricia Lowry says UPMC's ego is too large for the 62-floor US Steel Building [story].

The first gay tavern in Pittsburgh, the nondescript Holiday Bar located near Craig Street along Forbes Avenue, will close. The building was purchased by Carnegie Mellon.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Goin' Dahn Arahnd Tahn

Greetings, darnizens. Been too busy to blog. Until I return I give news on Madonna's visit to Africa From Rush and Molloy at NYDN.

Madonna is "devastated" that Nelson Mandela "refused" to meet with her during her trip to Africa, an insider tells us. Madge's rep says: "She never planned to meet him. She'd be honored, I'm sure. But she's focusing on Malawi. South Africa is Oprah's territory."

As Randy at the DVE Morning Show asked, "is this a real-life game of Risk?"

Charles McCullough says his misery is the result of a political hit-job [Trib]. Mr. McCullough says Bill Scranton supporters are upset with him for an old endorsement meeting imbroglio. Boo-hoo, Mr. McCullough. You're a scumbag and you got caught. All's fair in love, war, and politics.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Oh, the Children!

Virginia Tech was an unmitigated horror. Those who suffered through it have my utmost sympathy. The nation too is in mourning, and justifiably so. Colleges hold a unique position in society; as the embodiment of a parent's desire to furnish their child with unlimited opportunity, or the embodiment of that child's transformation into adulthood through education, random sexual intercourse and binge-drinking. Colleges thus hold an aura, a nostalgic mystique of safety and security that when shattered, proves all the more horrific.

But to say that the children of today are irreperably scarred by the violent nature of the world? Friggin absurd. For the Beltway Bo-Bo's who cried fat alligator tears over their children's loss of innocence, I offer a brief history of the life of my grandfather.

Pap was born in 1919. He's really old... but not old enough to remember WWI, the bloodiest war in history at that point. He started working for Pittsburgh Terminal Coal in 1933, which puts him at about 14 years old. Look at the bright side, though. People were lucky to have work during the Great Depression, even if it meant weathering deadly miner strikes and even deadlier work conditions. Throw in WWII, a few assassinations, the Cold War, some random killings and a holocaust, and you've got the 20th century... pap's life.

My point is, don't be so fucking lazy as to think this is as bad as it gets. America will face wars substantially more trying, more grave than that in Iraq. As China and Radical Islam rise to fill the violence void left by the end of the Cold War, we will face bloodier days than 9/11 or Virginia Tech. As Asia rises to prominence on a surplus of cheap labor and a deficit of liberal democracy, we will witness increasing economic uncertainty and global instability. Virginia Tech was horrific in its own right, but senseless violence is historically commonplace.

What to say to the kids, then? Steel yourselves, 'cause this ride has just begun.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Should I Stay or Should I Go

The Darn News typically avoids discussions theological, excepting those juicy moments when we all get a laugh at some awful gaffe by a pompous cross-wielding jackass. The latest, however, isn't another episode of Pat Robertson blessing assassination or Jerry Falwell breaking up interracial couples. Its Protestantism slowly slipping from relevance.

Theological divides among Presbyterians were notoriously violent from John Knox through the Civil War, when Presbyterians traded in their whiskey stills for Steel Mills and Banking Charters. Theological debates in the ensuing 200 years generally revolved around applying WWJD principles to Hedge Fund management. Then came gay marriage... What a friggin bore.

Just as globalization has rocked the third world, modernity has rocked this Judeo-Christian democracy bequeathed to us by our strict, illiberal forefathers. As mainline denominations alternatively break off into radicalized evangelicals or universalist liberals, they'll continue to bleed membership faster than the disillusioned flee radicalized politics. Afterall, just as a citizen can avoid the polls on Election Tuesday, it's not hard to hit the snooze on Sunday morning.

If our world finds itself stressed by globalized competition in markets and jobs, its buffeted culturally by ideas and immigration. People might be stressed out by a more complicated work/life/world/whatever, but the means by which we come to terms are likewise more varied. Drugs/yoga/schuezetq2skyii/whatever demand precious little in terms of anger or intellectual rigor. So don't be surprised when your neighborhood church is converted into a bar. No one goes to the bar to get angry.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Goin' Dahn Arahnd Tahn

Another reason to hate Doug Shields
Rich Lord has a follow-up story about the city's paving process. It's your standard local news plot: upper-middle class residents bitch, Yaron Zober trots out an obvious solution that should have already been employed, and Doug Shields blames somebody else. No wonder Pittsburgh continues to experience population drain.

Council President Doug Shields said he has tried to get Guarino [Street in Squirrel Hill] on the paving list, but that the city's $9 million paving budget doesn't go far enough. He said the state-appointed Intergovernmental Cooperation Authority stripped council of its ability to increase paving funding.

"People wonder why the council members have to scramble around the back doors to get things done," he said.

Mr. Pedutohead suggests the city reimplement software last used in 1999 that monitored street conditions and suggested paving/road maintenance programs. He adds that the result should be posted online for community feedback. For as much grief as the DN likes to give Pedutohead, this is a sound idea.
I could envision spending two to four hours a week commenting on the particular potholes I've battled during my drives through town. Gosh, our potholes have their own potholes. There are larger craters on Negley Avenue than Airport Road in Baghdad.

I prefer to be called an 'assertive driver.'

PNC is really struggling. $459 million struggling. Thankfully, they can stave on bankruptcy on a state subsidy for an unnecessary skyscraper and my $10.

The state education secretary says the dire situation of the Duquesne School District "is not morally acceptable nor is it financially acceptable." None of the neighboring school districts will absorb Duquesne's impoverished student body.

Update on Charles McCullough, the scumbag rainmaker who steered 40-large in donations from a rich, senile widow to four Allegheny County GOP candidates. McCullough heads the trust of Shirley Jordan, an 90-year old Upper St. Clair resident who suffers from dimentia. McCullough's wife is the director of Catholic Charities, a receipent of a $10,000 from Ms. Jordan's trust. Catholic Charities returned the donation, according to the Trib. McCullough's employer, Eckert Seimans is starting to raise questions about his behavior, too. [Hat tip Newshoggers]

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Goin Dahn Arahnd Tahn

For health skin, dermatologists suggest you drink eight glasses of cancer-water every day.

Extract from fish caught in Western Pennsylvania's rivers showed unnatural levels of materials that mimic the female hormone estrogen. When "fed" to breast cancer cells in the laboratory, the extract more than doubled the rate of cancer growth, according to a study presented Tuesday at the American Association for Cancer Research in Los Angeles.

One concern is that much of the region's drinking water comes from the rivers.

The Trib's Allison Heinrichs reports that 25 percent of local catfish has no gentalia.

Trib ed board says DA Stephen Zappala should investigate the unseemly political donations from Shirley Jordan's trust fund. Charles McCullough, a trustee for Jordan, who is a 90-year old Upper St. Clair woman suffering from dementia, donated $10,000 each to four Republican candidates. Two of those candidates, Vince Gastgeb and judge Cheryl Allen, sit on the trust's board.

The PG's Rich Lord reports about the timeless Pittsburgh plague, the pothole. The story is an example of the machinations of the local Democratic Party that destroy the patience of every resident.

Do influential connections raise your chances at repaved roads?

Only 40 of the city's 1,031 miles of road will be paved this year. Thankfully, just about every councilman and Democratic committee member will have their street paved.

Already stripped down to the base and ready for new pavement is Public Works Director Guy Costa's block of Beacon Street in Squirrel Hill. The block was last resurfaced 30 years ago, he said, though it got a coating of a stopgap material called Nova Chip in 1994.
This doesn't bother me. Guy Costa notes that the Race for the Cure route will route through Beacon Street. However...

"There's [Westwood School] on that street. It's a mess," said Mr. Deasy. "So I put it on the list."
We would all like to request that our councilman have some input into the decision-making process. But did I mention that Dan Deasy lives on 'that street' - Guyland Street? Fuck Dan Deasy. Fuck Jim Motzdick. Fuck Jeff Koch.

Woodbine Street in Stanton Heights also has a concrete section slated for a coat of blacktop. The concrete is cracked in places, and a few football-sized pieces are missing, but it's easily driveable.

Glad to hear we have our priorities straightened out. Oh, yeah. That's where Len Bodack lives.

John Shields downplayed the role of his position as a Democratic Committee member in getting his street on the list. The dead-end section of Goodman Street in Swisshelm Park that is to get fresh pavement is cracked, but not badly pothole-ridden.

It serves 24 houses.

The section "hasn't been paved in, whew, 20 years," said Mr. Shields.

'Whew' indeed. If Mr. Shields is exasperated then we must certainly pave his dead-end driveway! Simply put, if the city can only pave 40 miles of road each year then streets should be paved every 25 years.

By the way, while visiting the mayor's city's web site, I noticed the photo gallery plays a picture rotation comprised exclusively of Mayor-Opie portraits, including a shot of the mayor handing out candy during a parade. This isn't a new story, but it's irritating that our mayor has so little regard for separating policy from politics.

Christ, already. We get it. You're young, handsome, and unopposed. Viva La Luke.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Bill Cowher's Junk

Today, your friends rave about your collection of rare "City of Champions" commemorative Iron City beer pull-tab cans. They snap photographs next to the autographed marble bust of Myron Cope. Imagine how they would go ga-ga over this framed nude lithograph, once owned by Bill Cowher. It would be a great addition to any Steelers-decorated game room. It can be yours, if the price is right.

On April 28 at Dargate Auction Galleries in Point Breeze, you'll be able to bid on this item and many others from Mr. Cowher's provenance. You'll also be able to bid online at eBay.

Watch the big game of the Jaw's high-def TV (1245A) and drink a cold Ahrn from Mr. Bill's Lenox charleston beer mugs (1265 A).

You can read more about the Cowher's new beach home in Coastal Living Magazine (PG story).

Unprofessional City: A Study in Progressive Thought

District 12 in County Council is up for grabs this election. But contestants for the seat are so polite that the race has turned into a snore. Who benefits from such a bore... surely not the blogger attempting to craft an interesting story from such a snoozer. But the voters of the 12th will surely win from this one.

The reason for the apathy is rather understandable; these guys will be paid precious little to sit on County Council. Even if County Council is a patronage mill (the mere presence of John DeFazio makes it suspect), payoffs are small enough to skate under the omniscient eye of the PG. This is truly a pursuit of public service, one that harkens back to the earliest days of our republic's original citizen-legislature. The candidates, highly regarded professionals in their own right, promise superior representation regardless of the winner.

Compare the credentials of a Lawyer and Financial Manager (respectively) against District 12's counterpart in City Council's District 4: Jimmy Motznik. Half-wit Jim failed out of RMU's Hotel Management program in the mid '90s, and decided to do what any self-respecting ditch-digger or Con Artist does in Pittsburgh: Run for City Council. Need more? Compare County Council, which is relatively innovative and capable, to City Council, which serves partly as a bullpen for Mayors-In-Waiting and partly as an attache of DPW's AFSCME Union negotiating division. When 'Full-Time Professional City Council' transilates into 'Professional Politician,' one realizes that a 'Professionalized' public servant isn't always the best thing.

We would be better served by a volunteer City Council of every-day citizen: A common-sense check to the absurdity of the mayor's office and union pressure groups. Council members would be less beholden to special interests and money. The loser of an election doesn't lose his job, he or she just takes Tuesday night council meetings off their calendar. As for better 'constituent services,' beef up the Mayor's Service Center. 311 is a great program when staffed by more than 1 ineffectual flunkie. Without a paid council, we might be able to afford a dozen or more, and put two or three more cops on the street. If that doesn't work, add two more councilmen! They're free, right?

If nothing else, I would happily replace any of the seated city councilmembers with either Bill Lestitian or Jim Ellenbogen. At least they don't embezzle money/punch cops at their daughter's softball games/ wear swamp boots to work/ lose their nuts before a mayoral primary even gets underway...

Goin Dahn Arahnd Tahn

Nothing. After the Twanda affair and the likely-fraudulent donations to Republicans from a wealthy Upper St. Clair widow who suffers from dementia, the newspapers must be exhausted. There's little worth reading. If you're at work today, I suggest you visit the restroom farthest away from your office, find a comfortable stall, and take a nap for the next eight hours.

More Imus nonsense for you. I think The Onion opened a Moscow bureau. I watched a terrific roundtable on Meet The Press. David Brooks (NYT), Gwen Ifill (PBS), Eugene Robinson (WP), and John Harwood (WSJ). Good stuff about a culture of cruelty.

Dickie Scaife must be smiling this morning. His rival publisher, Block Communications, owns the PG and the Toledo Blade. A Blade photographer digitally edited 57 images last year, according to the AP.

There's a story about Bob Casey, who died seven years ago. Correction. It's a story about his son, who is a US Senator.

It looked like the Penguins might be en route to a 2-1 series lead after an intense first period. But things went to pot. If the flightless birds lose again, Michel Terrien may bludgeon Sergei Gonchar and tie him to a barbecue spit.

Auto dealer Bill Baierl is dead. He will be remembered as the only car merchant in Pittsburgh whose radio commercial is not hardwired in my brain.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Goin Dahn Arahnd Tahn

She's a big donor to politicians, but it's news to her
A 90-year old Upper St. Clair woman, who has never made a political donation, hasn't voted in 10 years and suffers from dementia, just made $40,000 worth of donations to four local Republicans she has never heard of. The PG's Dennis Roddy wrote an absolutely unbelievable story about Shirley H. Jordan.

The nonagenarian is the single largest donor to Allegheny County candidates this election cycle. Four $10,000 checks were drawn from Mrs. Jordan's trust after being authorized by one of her trustees, local Republican attorney Charles McCullough, who is also an at-large county council candidate.

Mrs. Jordan says:
"I have an attorney who is ambitious to be active in politics," she said. "It was not my decision. I knew nothing about it. Then I find he has control of everything and he's spending it right and left. He's a cheap politician."

Mr. McCullough says "Mrs. Jordan...likely 'dummied up' on a visiting stranger."

Her previous attorney, Stephen Paschall, said Mrs. Jordan subsequently appeared to have recovered from the 2005 episode and that she had a good understanding of her financial matters.

The unanswered question is whether any of the four candidates - Cheryl Allen, who is seeking the GOP nomination for Superior Court, and County Council candidates Vince Gastgeb, Jan Rea and Susan Caldwell - made a donation to Mr. McCullough.

You must read this story if only to hear the obnoxious response from Ms. Caldwell.

Twanda Carlisle's misery continues today. The PG has a story about Ms. Carlisle's profligate spending through reimbursable accounts.
But she also spent $2,938 in city funds on draperies, and reimbursed herself $407.82 for expenses reportedly related to a district office.

Ms. Carlisle took $1,805 -- the maximum allowable under City Council rules -- as reimbursement for business miles driven in a personal car last year.

Buy yourself an Iron City this weekend. You may never be able to drink one again. Trib story here.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Come Clean, Peduto-head

Peduto thinks that, as the highest-elected official of Progressive Pittsburgh, the movement in Pittsburgh rises and falls with his political fortunes. Hey, it was true for Eugene Debs. Peduto is the most visible form of life in our sclerotic city government, and would likely be Mayor if not for his own fickleness and his campaign's wasteful get-aht-vote efforts on Pitt's apathetic campus. So he has the right to 'keep the debate going?' Just like that other political wunderkind and MoveOn darling, Dennis Kucinich, right? That's why I'm still getting e-mails from a campaign best known for re-defining "Quitting" as "a successful preemptive strike," featuring attacks on Baby Luke.

Quit bullshitting us, Bill. You in, or you out? I'd say your strategy made you crazy as a fox, if you weren't being so annoying furtive about running in November. Short on money, short on support? You're gonna be even worse off in November when you're sputtering like a cross between John Kerry and Ross Perot, "I quit the campaign before I joined it."

More stories on Jimmy Lee Tayse (photo)

A police spokesperson said the arrest was uneventful and police were unsure where he obtained the black eye. (photo credit:

Links to the Cleveland Plain-Dealer of scumbag Jimmy Lee Tayse:

Cleveland woman's sharp eye, memory help nab fugitive

Rape-kidnapping suspect doesn't contest move to Pa.

Goin' Dahn Arahnd Tahn

Pittsburgh councilwoman and pickpocket Twanda Carlisle was arraigned for pilfering at least $38,000 from city coffers in a rudimentary kickback scheme using three unqualified "consultants."

Here's the PG story
. Find links to complete coverage at Burgh Report. Your money quote, from Ms. Carlisle's mother:

She suggested that bias against women may be at work, citing radio personality Don Imus' recent comments about the Rutgers University women's basketball team.

"And also, you know, if you look at our society, any time you have a person come out and say, 'rough, tough, nappy-headed hos,' this is what our society thinks of women," Ms. Parker said...

Speaking of Imus, the embattled jock is airing his annual telethon to raise money for children for cancer. He'll start his suspension in two weeks. You won't see the telethon on MSNBC because the cruel suits at GE pulled the plug after major advertisers abandoned the show. Anyone else getting the feeling tha the Rage Against Imus is reading like a chapter from Wolfe's Bonfire of the Vanities?

PG includes an audio interview with Mayor Opie, who wants the ethics board to convene. You may recall that two months ago Bill Pedutohead met with the Ethics Board independently. The Admiral at People's Republic of Pgh is "underwhelmed" by Opie's newfound integrity. WTAE's Bob Mayo reported about the dormant ethics board in February.

The region may have lost 60,000 people since 2000, office vacancy rates may have risen to a gluttonous 20 percent, but the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership says the Golden Triangle is a hive buzzing with worker bees.

A snarky commentary from Metroblogging Pittsburgh on Mayor Opie's new "youth committee."

A breakfast recipe the whole family will enjoy - from your mother and father to your crack-addled sister. I hope Betty Crocker has a recipe for injectable cupcakes.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Downtown Pittsburgh skyline has a bad case of acne

UPMC has announced they will move their evil labratory headquarters from Oakland to the U.S. Steel Building in downtown Pittsburgh. UPMC chief doc Jeffrey Romoff confirmed that the $6 billion non-profit would like to top the iconic structure with the UPMC logo. Mayor Luke was ecstatic.
"Any company willing to erect a cubicle and plug in a telephone downtown can have whatever they want, according to my new plan, 'Whatever The Fuck It Takes.' "

The Darn News' has obtained an artist's rendering of what the city's skyline will likely resemble next year:

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

What I Want, What I Want

Jim Rohr, I want you to hire a decent advertising agency. At the start of every baseball season, I suffer an inner-ear infection from the bacterial radio advertisements aired by PNC Bank.

If you've listened to Bucco baseball on the radio the past six seasons you've heard a series of putrid radio spots from the bank eponymous with the ballpark.

This season, the PNC ad has an announcer describing the habits of eccentric Pirate ballplayers. Sadly, PNC chose to use the voice of a generic sports broadcaster rather than our own beloved, generic announcer, Lanny Frattare.

Last season, PNC's radio spot had fans discussing how they display their love of the Bucs through banking transactions. You may recall the shrill huzzah of a female consumer who says, "It's as if each time I open my checkbook, I'm shouting 'Go Get 'Em Pirates!' "

Go Get 'Em Pirates?!?


And who can forget the "big blue microphone" and the "What I want, what I want" series?

I expect a little more effort from the Bucco Bank of Record. I'm concerned PNC is using an out-of-town agency, or a local firm that hasn't a clue who the Pirates are. If I hear the same radio ad in Washington, D.C. pimping PNC as the official bank of the Nationals, I will inserting the big-blue microphone into Jim's anus.

I suppose I would be less angry if the Bucs had one winning season in the last fourteen years or Jim Rohr didn't charge me $10 for the "privilege" of carrying a PNC Park vanity check card.

Even Hazelwood: A Study in Progressive Thought

Decrepit abandoned storefronts, crime and 120 blocks of shuttered steel mill. At first blanche, Hazelwood is a dump: drug-pushing thugs interspersed with pirogie-pushing grannies talkin 'bout Hazelwood's good old days. At second glance, it's still a dump. Cue fat-ass J. Barry Stout: "Boy, if we plough it under with an expressway, at least asphalt and concrete pilings don't commit crimes."

This Pittsburghese negativism persists in the face of tangible reality. Though there aren't NYC or DC style land-rushes transforming our ghettos overnight, Pittsburgh continues on with an inexplicable, incremental growth. Over a span of 25 years, Friendship and Shadyside became expensive, the Squirrel Cage lost its signature security bars, and the Southside features ample sushi and yoga. Go figure. Within a span of 24 months, the ratty-ass Penn Avenue corridor in Garfield came alive on Fridays, drug trafficking interspersed with slick hipsters who like their poetry-slams and coffee with the occasional pop of gunfire. Braddock, facing the same fate as Hazelwood, actually MARKETS itself as a gritty shithole. Dahn in the 15104.

Pittsburgh's population is shrinking, so logically there just aren't enough people to support all this activity. Too much art, too much gallery, too much coffee... its stealing from somewhere else! But how do you deny reality... none of Garfield's galleries, coffee and Vietnamese pho is subsidized. This quarter alone, a dozen 20 to 30 somethings bought houses with market loans in the heart of East Liberty's hard-knock residential neighborhood. Who knows where they're coming from... I just know they're not headed for Wexford.

Hazelwood and Braddock may never revive. But to write them off is to ignore national and local trends. Talk about ignoring national trends, who the hell is building highways through urban neighborhoods anymore?!? Especially highways that cut off ACCESS TO A RIVERFRONT?!? I don't know the magic that propels Garfield, but it might one day propel Hazelwood and Braddock. 10-20 years from now we will see that, and regret the Mon Fayette.

Goin' Dahn Arahnd Tahn

Cleveland police are preparing to hand over Jimmy Lee Tayse, the suspected dirtbag who kidnapped and raped a Fox Chapel woman at the Waterworks Mall on Saturday, April 7. The PG 's story by Cindi Lash and Jonathan Silver includes a brief exchange with the victim's mother-in-law.

Todd Hollis, a former lawyer in East Liberty, sued the operator of the web site for defamation. Several anonymous women had posted critical remarks to the site regarding Mr. Hollis' "uncleanliness" and sexual impropriety. Yesterday, an Allegheny County judge threw out the suit, stating that it was filed in the wrong jurisdiction. If you'd like to read the allegations supposedly written by Mr. Hollis' concubines, click here. [Image credit: Action Sports Int'l. Published in the Post-Gazette]

The sonorous voice of KDKA TV has died. George Eisenhauer was the creamy baritone voice heard announcing KDKA newscasts, holiday sales at Horne's, and produce specials at Giant Eagle. If you're under 30, you probably never saw his face, but you know his voice. Hear him intone the beginning of the Eyewitness News at the 45-second spot in this KDKA news clip on You Tube.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Goin' Dahn Arahnd Tahn

Yesterday, Cleveland police arrested a suspect in the Saturday morning abduction and rape of a Fox Chapel woman. Police captured Jimmy Lee Tayse, Johnstown, after a anonymous tipster reported the location of the woman's blue Jeep Grand Cherokee.
Here's the Sunday story in the PG. As usual, the Trib outdoes the PG with its crime coverage. Justin Velluci of the Trib attempts to answer the questions ignored by the PG, like "does Jimmy Lee Tayse fit the description the victim gave police?" A very harrowing experience.

The Trib reports on the Penguin Shakedown. A group of Hill District church and business leaders want $10 million because a new arena will be constructed in nearby Uptown. Unlike the Civic Arena plan, which demolished 95 acres and displaced more than 1,500 families, the new plan will not remove any residents.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Hill District Cash Grab

In 1961, the City, State and Fed cut big ass checks to rip the heart out the lower Hill District. In a political horror foretold by liberal economists since Adam Smith, the expenditure of government funds in the destruction of the Hill District kicked off 50 years of recriminations and guilt-inspired checks. Somewhere between 1961 and 2007, the failed logic of good intentions was perverted into the base logic of "That's a lotta money you got there. Gimme some of that."

In a shakedown that bests both Al Sharpton's audacity and Tom Wolfe's pen, the latter logic played out in naked absurdity. A hodge-podge mob of the entitled summoned local politicos to the Wesley Zion Mighty God Bank and Trust, where the 'Community' was seeking the next installment of payments for the wrongs done to the Hill. Only at the Darnnnews, the proposed terms:

Of course, the politicos are keen on paying for the sins of their fathers... even if they didn't know whom to make the check out to. Onorato was appropriately contrite when Ravenstahl was spotted wiping cum off his chin. I humbly request that the brazen leaders of the mob at least show a little more respect. At least JJ Gumberg and PNC make political contributions before a shakedown.

Goin' Dahn Arahnd Tahn

Here's what we're reading today:

An interview in Modern Drunkard Magazine with one of the 167 Raytheon employees / temporary residents of Antarctica about the 24-hour debauchery and boozing, titled "Soused at the South Pole."

A Seattle house was emptied of everything - including the kitchen sink - when a post appeared on craigslist advertising that the home's contents were available free of charge. The poster may be an evicted tenant, who happens to be the landlord's sister.

And as part of our continuing coverage of 'Hot for Teacher,' Ambridge social studies teacher David M. Costanza was arrested for having sex with a 15-year female student (note that one must clarify the pupil's gender). Costanza's father is was the school board president. He resigned.

Pittsburgh protest at marine recruiting station

Since the city's media has ignored cries of police brutality by the Pittsburgh Organizing Group, the leading organization for people who dislike organization, we are left to speculate as to what really happened two nights ago at the POG protest held in front of the Marine recruiting station in Shadyside.

Did a POG provoke the police or did the police behave badly?

Who was the nasty midnight vandal?

Was it a POG splinter group?

Or perhaps, in a cunning effort to discredit the POG and remove focus from their own misdeeds, 'twas the police force that busted the windows and splattered paint across the recruiting station.

Whatever the case may be you can be sure that Pittsburgh's radical left will speak eloquently and thoughtfully. Take for instance the debate that's raging here at the blog of a Pittsburgh "progressive."
...police are a portected [sic] group. They get to attack at random, without being stopped, and it is not safe to respond to that attack except later in court.

...Of course, protesting the current war is, in a way, protesting the police, because the paramilitarization of our police forces across the country are a part of the current war

Here are links to previous POG coverage via our severe protest center:
Pittsburgh anarchists randomly meet at recruiting station, vandalism ensues

More like 'Carnegie Felon'

Thursday, April 05, 2007

This is my first affair, please be gentle

Pictured: City police arrest two members of the Pittsburgh Organizing Group, Pittsburgh's leading organization for people who dislike organization. Find more pictures from this bloody day of infamy at:
Pittsburgh Indy Media

Today, a POG posted his account of this tragic event in the POG News!

After three female drivers honked in the span of a minute, Sgt. Vollberg (Badge #3618) turned to his partner and commented, "Did you notice all of these women are fat, ugly bitches," eliciting a laugh from the other officer.

It elicited a laugh from us, too! Sgt. Vollberg, you're a riot!

The POGs are angry that police treated the tea-partiers shabbily and will hold a candlelight vigil outside Sgt. Vollberg's residence on April 12. All of Pittsburgh is invited. Let's show our support for these hopeless romantics. Hope to see you there!

Dem Buccos - First undefeated season ever?

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Spring Into Style At Irana Republic

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says it was a luvvy-jubbly detention holiday in Iran for these sexy British mates and their loveable mascot, Helga, a blind, yet doting house-mother from the Ural Mountain village of Visherogorsk.

Pittsburgh anarchists randomly meet at recruiting station, vandalism ensues

In their ongoing effort to stop the war machine from enlisting members of the Pittsburgh hoity-toity, local anarchists randomly collectivized at the Shadyside Marine Recruiting Station for an Iraqi war protest last night.

Eager to display their rage, the anarchists used a method preferred by proud patriots everywhere: wee-hour vandalism. Wanting to avoid a quarrel with the slick-skulled killers serving their country, the Pittsburgh Organizing Group bitched outside the shuttered office at 8 PM. Sometime between protest time and dawn, POGs shattered windows and splattered paint upon the facade.

The troops are on their way home! VICTORY ANARCHY NOW!

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Goin' Dahn Arahnd Tahn

The inimitable John McIntire is back on the air. Clear Channel has turned 93.7 into a cynical misogynist's dream station: Opie and Anthony, Dennis Miller, Johnny Mac, and possibly Scott Paulsen. MacYapper says there is a contract tif between Paulsen and Clear Channel.

Dem Buccos are undefeated! A terrific outing by Zach Duke and solid defense from Chris Duffy and the Jose's give the Pirates a rare victory in Houston's bandbox ballpark where they are 12 - 42. Don't expect three-homer nights to continue. Nuts to the jerkoffs at the Sharp Edge who switched from the Bucco game in the tenth inning to the national championship tilt. Just because every nerd enters a $25 office pool and picks Florida to repeat, a Jimmy the Greek does not make. The Pirates will play again, and I'll be watching the game somewhere else.

It was a surreal experience to listen to the Pirates on FM radio. I felt like Lanny Frattare was sitting in my car's passenger seat.

The PG's Mike White recounted the tumultuous upbringing of Parade All-American and New Mexico State recruit Herb Pope, who was recently shot four times at a party in Aliquippa. Well done story with interviews of coaches, mentors, and teammates from Herb's past.

If you haven't read Chris Potter's interview with Bill Peduto-head yet, check it out. The councilman speaks candidly about the effect of the media on Opie's invincibility. He theorizes that his candidacy was a foil for the establishment; if Luke crushed Bill, Luke and his machine-brethren would reign supreme for the next six years. He also chides the PG editorial board:
I'm not a pawn. It's like what the Post-Gazette [editorial] said: that I need to stay in there to give [Ravenstahl] the experience of running a citywide campaign. That's not my job. I didn't get into this race to be Luke's mentor. I got into this race because I know what the problems are in the city, and I know how to fix them, and I'm not going to hide the fact that this city is going in the wrong direction.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Darfur Intervention is a BAD IDEA

David Rosenberg is trying to 'raise awareness' about the crisis in Darfur. Info sessions, marches, and a fairly successful divestment initiative; a veritable What's What of sexy outreach initiatives. D'anna Caliguri, hang your slacker head low at the next Poetry Slam. David Rosenberg schooled your silly ass.

I have to ask, where exactly do we see this activism going? At first glance, Mr. Rosenberg advocates social awareness and some broad-based divestment initiatives. But checking out the Pittsburgh Darfur Emergency Coalition's website, a little Neo-Con narrative awaits:
The Pittsburgh Darfur Emergency Coalition joins organizations nationwide in calling upon the U.S. government, in concert with the United Nations, the African Union and other bodies, to act decisively and without further delay, to prevent any further human destruction and to enable the displaced to return in peace to their homes.
That... that sounds like military intervention. Shit, I thought I just signed up for a bake sale. But since Americans are generally greeted as Liberators in the sand riven lands of Mohammed, I can go with this. Just imagine all those bloated-bellied babies waving their red,white and blue in the liberator's parade through Mogadishu... er, Khartoum!

Wipe the flies from your eyes. The African Union is worthless, and the EU ain't getting in bed with the US over anything anytime soon. That leaves the US, which is OUT OF SOLDIERS. The peaceful facade of marches and bake sales masks a proposal for a US led and dominated war in Africa.