Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Jim Mora: 'Tell Scott [Walker] he's full of shit'

Posted By on Tue, Sep 12, 2017 at 4:12 PM

The magic moment when Jim Mora didn't realize he was on live TV.
  • The magic moment when Jim Mora didn't realize he was on live TV.

The New Orleans Saints may have opened the regular 2017 season with a 'dang' rather than a bang, but one person did not disappoint: During the post-game show, former Saints coach and current WDSU sports analyst Jim Mora told sportscasters Fletcher Mackel and Sharief Ishaq that WDSU anchor Scott Walker was "full of shit."

Video under the jump!

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Thursday, August 17, 2017

Editorial: After Charlottesville

Posted By on Thu, Aug 17, 2017 at 6:09 PM

Charlottesville, Virginia, Aug. 12, 2017. - CREATIVE COMMONS/ANTHONY CRIDER
  • Charlottesville, Virginia, Aug. 12, 2017.

Watching the images and hearing the words out of Charlottesville, Virginia last weekend was depressing, sickening, infuriating — and necessary. Necessary because the country got a good look at the people who call themselves the “alt-right,” which is their sanitized term for neo-Nazis, white supremacists, Klansmen and other haters who feel emboldened in America today. It’s also necessary because some of them are planning similar rallies in Boston, San Francisco and elsewhere in the coming days and weeks.

Some of the malefactors who caused harm in Charlottesville also were in New Orleans during the weeks surrounding the hotly contested removal of four Confederate monuments. It’s easy to say New Orleans was lucky it didn’t have the chaos and death that marked Charlottesville, but it was more than luck. It was planning.

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Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Editorial: A not-so-dry run exposes Sewerage & Water Board ineptitude

Posted By on Wed, Aug 9, 2017 at 6:30 PM

Floodwaters rising on Banks Street in Mid-City Aug. 5. - PHOTO BY KEVIN ALLMAN
  • Floodwaters rising on Banks Street in Mid-City Aug. 5.

When Joe Becker, general superintendent of the New Orleans Sewerage & Water Board, began answering questions from the New Orleans City Council Tuesday (Aug. 8), it was clear the S&WB’s original story about its performance during the Aug. 5 storm was taking on more water than a Lamborghini stranded in Lakeview. Just before the council’s special meeting, S&WB Executive Director Cedric Grant announced he would be retiring by the end of the year. “Some parts of our system did not operate as they should have, which is disappointing because it contradicts information that I was given to provide to the public,” Grant said. That was an understatement.

The information referenced by Grant — that all the drainage pumps were in working order during the storm — was contradicted by statistics that councilmembers tweezed out of Becker during the special meeting. Becker floated the equivocal meme that “all the pump stations were working at the capacity they had available to them.” As it turned out, 14 of the system’s 121 pumps were out of commission. A Lakeview pumping station operating at 100 percent of its “available capacity” was actually working at 57 percent of capacity. Other stations reported similar problems.

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Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Uptown Messenger report: Mayoral candidate Scurlock suggests Aug. 5 flood is proof 'God is not happy' with New Orleans

Posted By on Tue, Aug 8, 2017 at 2:18 PM

Frank Scurlock, mayoral candidate. - FACEBOOK/FRANK SCURLOCK
  • Frank Scurlock, mayoral candidate.

In an interview with Uptown Messenger
, mayoral candidate Frank Scurlock said that a disrespect for history is “why God has washed and flooded the City twice in 2 weeks. Maybe he is not happy.”:
“It’s not just the monument issue,” Scurlock said. “Quite frankly, when you look at the crime rates, the poverty rates — I just think there’s a higher power that is looking over everything, and he wants people to remove the hate.

“New Orleans East needs a cleansing in itself,” Scurlock said. “There’s hardly anything going right, except the opening of dollar stores.”
Read the whole interview here.

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Sunday, August 6, 2017

New Orleans endures more summer flooding Aug. 5; city officials provide updates on pumps, parking

Posted By on Sun, Aug 6, 2017 at 12:40 PM

Flooding near Banks and Carrollton Aug. 5. - PHOTO BY KEVIN ALLMAN
  • Flooding near Banks and Carrollton Aug. 5.

As rains died down after 9 p.m. Aug. 5, both lanes of Banks Street in Mid-City were covered in several inches of standing water, with cars parked as close to houses and up against buildings and on neutral grounds to avoid creeping floods that submerged dozens of cars in the neighborhood.

A few people with their feet in the water sat in picnic benches outside Finn McCool's Irish Pub. Around the corner, Twelve Mile Limit only narrowly avoided water coming into the front door despite the bar standing only slightly above street level. Passing cars, however, frequently sent waves into the doorway and into nearby cars and porches, as residents braced for another round of impact after enduring a few hours of rain with seemingly nowhere for it to go.

New Orleans received 8 to 10 inches of rain in many parts of the city as an afternoon downpour on Aug. 5 flooded homes and cars and trapped people on roads. Residents pulled out kayaks and canoes or waded through shin- and waist-deep water across Mid-City, Gentilly, Treme, Lakeview and parts of Uptown and downtown.

"These no-notice rain and flooding events can be very dangerous, but luckily, there was no loss of life," said Mayor Mitch Landrieu in a statement. "We begin the hard work of assisting those who flooded and getting our streets passable for regular traffic. With additional rain expected today and the rest of this week, I would encourage all of our residents to clean in front of their catch basins."

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Monday, July 3, 2017

Y@ Speak: 'Essential' health benefits

Posted By on Mon, Jul 3, 2017 at 5:00 PM

Louisiana celebrates the first birthday of Medicaid's expansion by trying to spare it from death, everyone's internet goes down, crawfish is tortured by mustard — then Essence Festival saves the day.

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Monday, June 12, 2017

Participants mull mortality at 'Death Cafe' June 13

Posted By on Mon, Jun 12, 2017 at 10:00 AM


Unless you're aspiring vampire Peter Thiel, you — and everyone you love — will someday die.

To make sense of this basic, yet frankly sort of upsetting reality, Tulane Narrative Medicine hosts an informal "Death Cafe" at Treo at 6 p.m. Tuesday. At the event, participants discuss their feelings about mortality and the ways death affects our lives and process deaths that may have affected them (for example, the death of a family member, or deaths observed while working as a medical professional).

Though the event is organized by medical facilitators, it's open to anyone who wishes to attend and isn't specifically health care oriented. Participating in the conversation isn't required — you can just come and listen.

Cocktails, beer and wine are available for purchase, and cake is served. It's free to attend.

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Wednesday, June 7, 2017

World Naked Bike Ride (New Orleans edition) rolls June 10

Posted By on Wed, Jun 7, 2017 at 4:18 PM

Riders leave Markey Park during the 2014 World Naked Bike Ride. - ROBERT JENNINGS/YOUTUBE
  • Riders leave Markey Park during the 2014 World Naked Bike Ride.

The ninth annual World Naked Bike Ride ("bare as you dare") pedals out of Mickey Markey Park in the Bywater this Saturday, June 10, at 4 p.m. The group plans to roll through the Bywater, Faubourg Marigny and French Quarter, then back to Markey Park.

According to the organizers' website, 70 cities in 20 countries will be participating in the skinful fun this year.

An after-party will be held at Castillo Blanco starting at 7 p.m. No word on dress code or lack thereof.
The route for Saturday's World Naked Bike Ride. - FACEBOOK
  • The route for Saturday's World Naked Bike Ride.
Location Details Mickey Markey Park
700 Piety St
New Orleans, Louisiana
Location Details Castillo Blanco
4321 St. Claude Ave.
New Orleans, LA
(504) 301-8201

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Monday, May 22, 2017

Mississippi politician apologizes for saying New Orleans leaders should be 'lynched' for Confederate monument removal

Posted By on Mon, May 22, 2017 at 12:57 PM

Mississippi State Rep. Karl Oliver.
  • Mississippi State Rep. Karl Oliver.
Mississippi State Rep. Karl Oliver has apologized for a Facebook posting over the weekend in which he suggested the "leadership" of New Orleans should be "lynched" over the removal of four controversial Confederate-era monuments.

Oddly, though, he apologized to "my colleagues and fellow Mississippians," rather than New Orleanians.

The post, which later was removed, said:

"The destruction of these monuments, erected in the loving memory of our family and fellow Southern Americans, is both heinous and horrific. If the, and I use this term extremely loosely, "leadership" of Louisiana wishes to, in a Nazi-ish fashion, burn books or destroy historical monuments of OUR HISTORY, they should be LYNCHED! Let it be known, I will do all in my power to prevent this from happening in our State."

According to the Jackson Free Press, which was one of the first outlets to report on Oliver's post, he issued an email apology this morning:

The original Facebook post, which since has been deleted.
  • The original Facebook post, which since has been deleted.
"I, first and foremost, wish to extend this apology for any embarrassment I have caused to both my colleagues and fellow Mississippians," Oliver said in a written response. "In an effort to express my passion for preserving all historical monuments, I acknowledge the word 'lynched' was wrong. I am very sorry. It is in no way, ever, an appropriate term. I deeply regret that I chose this word, and I do not condone the actions I referenced, nor do I believe them in my heart. I freely admit my choice of words was horribly wrong, and I humbly ask your forgiveness."

The Free Press also reported on Oliver last year, when he replied to a Gulfport resident's email about budget cuts with his own email, which read in part, "The people of our Great State overwhelmingly share my same or similar views on Government responsibility. I appreciate you going to the trouble to share yours with me, but quite frankly, and with all due respect, I could care less."

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Friday, May 5, 2017

The future is now: Robots, self-driving cars and a moon settlement at Collision

Posted By on Fri, May 5, 2017 at 10:00 AM

Rodolphe Gelin, chief scientific officer at SoftBank Robotics, and Pepper the robot. - COURTESY COLLISION CONF
  • Rodolphe Gelin, chief scientific officer at SoftBank Robotics, and Pepper the robot.

"My purpose is to interact with humans," a friendly robot named Pepper tells me. We're at  the Collision conference, where's he's about to help me write a song on invisible instruments.

Pepper is the brainchild of SoftBank Robotics, and several units (Peppers?) are available in an upstairs conference room for our engagement. When I meet him, colorful lights around his oversized, anime-style pupils flash, and a red laser hidden in the center of his eye tracks my facial expressions, so Pepper can listen and react to me. As he listens, his head tilts toward me and his hands flex ever so slightly, like a person fidgeting.

Via a screen attached to his chest, Pepper shows me a game. In empty space in front of him, I can strike three invisible "boxes" to play notes — like mid-air Dance Dance Revolution game without the floor pad. Pepper plays piano arpeggios as a background to the notes I play, and as I hit thin air, lights on a nearby table flash in unison. Then the robot plays the song back for me, and dances.

It's beautiful — and chilling.

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