Saturday, November 27, 2010

Mike Bloomberg Says Crow Tastes Like Chicken ; Schools Chancellor Deal is an ''Illusion of Concession''

David Steiner first opposed the Cathleen Black nomination, and Mr. Steiner made Mayor Bloomberg eat some crow. Nonplussed, Mayor Bloomberg said, ''Tastes like chicken.''

Mayor Michael Bloomberg reached a face-saving deal to rescue his tottering nomination of Cathleen Black to become the next New York City Schools Chancellor. In reaching his compromise, Mayor Bloomberg has agreed to appoint a career educator to serve as Ms. Black's second in command.

The New York Daily News is calling the Bloomberg-Black-Steiner deal an ''illusion of a concession.''

Ms. Black's new underling, who will hold the title of chief academic officer, is more qualified than Ms. Black herself, not only to overcome the judgment by the state education commission that Ms. Black lacks any qualification to be the next schools chancellor. But even The New York Times has reported that the duties of Ms. Black's new chief academic officer are actually the duties of the school chancellor. Who's your manager ?

From The Times report :

After several days of talks with state officials, Mr. Bloomberg agreed to create the position of chief academic officer to oversee curriculum and testing at the city’s Department of Education. Under the deal, that job would go to Shael Polakow-Suransky, a former principal of a Bronx high school who is a top official at the city’s Department of Education.

But exactly how much authority Mr. Polakow-Suransky, 38, will wield is unclear. A job description prepared by the city said he would have “the broadest scope for the exercise of independent initiative and judgment” and listed 25 duties, including many that would normally fall to the head of a school system. But Mr. Polakow-Suransky will still report to Ms. Black, who is accustomed to setting the agenda in the rough-and-tumble world of corporate culture.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Delta Jet Makes Emergency Landing At JFK Airport

Airplane Lands Safely at Kennedy Airport After Engine Problem, reported The New York Times.

An airplane reported to be operated by Delta Airlines made an emergency landing Sunday night at JFK Airport in New York City after the jet experienced engine trouble.

"A spokesman for the Port Authority said the pilot complained of an unspecified engine problem and determined that the plane needed to return immediately to the airport," reported The Times.

Officials determined that the plane was not on fire after it had made its landing. The Times report added that the pilots were able to taxi the troubled jet from the runway "without incident."

The plane was carrying approximately 200 people, reported The Times.

NYTimes Interviews Cher Before National Release Of ''Burlesque''

Cher Stars In ''Burlesque'' and Confronts Her Age

In an intimate interview conducted in her suite at the Four Seasons Hotel in New York, the superstar Cher spoke with Frank Bruni from The New York Times.

The interview, which reminds us of some of Cher's greatest film hits, was published a few days before the national release of her new movie, ''Burlesque.''

The article has a favourable review of a torch song, “You Haven’t Seen the Last of Me,” that Cher sings in the new movie.

''Burlesque'' will be released nationwide in the United States on November 24, 2010.

Veterans Protest Mercer Hotel

Veterans-Sidewalk Vendors Protest Unfair Treatment By Mercer Hotel in SoHo, NYC

Veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces and activists gathered outside the Mercer Hotel in the SoHo neighborhood of Manhattan to protest what they call unfair treatment by the hotel's management.

Some veterans earn a living by working as sidewalk vendors, selling arts and crafts from tables along the historic streets of SoHo, much like the way artists do in Montmartre in Paris.

The artistic tradition and tourist attraction in the chic neighborhood of Manhattan's SoHo is drawing the ill will of management of the Mercer Hotel, some veterans and activists say. At noon on Saturday, Nov. 20, 2010, over a dozen veterans and activists turned up to protest what they call the Mercer Hotel's hostile treatment of veterans. Among the protesters was New York City artist and political blogger Suzannah B. Troy.

Veterans and activists were protesting what they allege is the practice of Michael Rawson, the manager of the Mercer Hotel, who calls the police to ticket or arrest veteran and art vendors.

During the protest, Ms. Troy cited an example of how the Mercer Hotel has questionably used the loading and unloading zone along Mercer Street for what has been alleged to be private or valet parking. Veterans and activists question why the Mercer Hotel harasses U.S. Veterans ; meanwhile, the hotel might be breaking traffic laws by misusing the loading zone along Mercer Street.

During the planned 20 minute protest on Saturday, police showed up in the final two minutes of the demonstration, blowing an unnecessary siren and trying to disperse the already-concluding protest.

Mercer Hotel Harasses Veterans, Who Work As Sidewalk Vendors : Activists

Suzannah B. Troy's Speech Supporting Veterans - Mercer Hotel Protest

New York City artist and political blogger Suzannah B. Troy gave an impassioned public speech outside the Mercer Hotel to protest what she called unfair treatment by the Mercer Hotel of Armed Forces Veterans, who work as sidewalk vendors in New York City.

In the area around the Mercer Hotel, located in the SoHo neighborhood of Manhattan, many sidewalk vendors set up tables on sidewalks to sell arts and crafts. Many vendors complain that the Mercer Hotel calls the police to give citations or tickets to the sidewalk vendors in a systematic program to rid the block of sidewalk vendors outside the chic boutique hotel.

In her speech, Ms. Troy cited an example of how the Mercer Hotel has questionably used the loading and unloading zone along Mercer Street for what has been alleged to be private or valet parking.

Following her speech, over one dozen protesters gathered to demonstrate against the perceived injustice by the Mercer Hotel. Activists blame the hotel's manager, Michael Rawson, for the systematic mistreatment of Veterans, who work as sidewalk vendors, while the hotel has allegedly made use of the loading zone for questionable hotel parking.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Oui Mais Non Music Video Review

Mylène Farmer : Music Video Review : ''Oui Mais ... Non'' ; ''The new music video for ''Oui Mais ... Non'' is more of a ''mainstream'' music video for Mylène Farmer.''

The new music video for ''Oui Mais ... Non'' is more of a ''mainstream'' music video for Mylène Farmer. Yes, there are qualities about this video that are similar to Lady Gaga's video for ''Bad Romance.'' In ''Oui Mais ... Non,'' Ms. Farmer is not collaborating with Laurent Boutonnat, her longtime co-song writer/artistic director, for this video (and song), so her latest presentation is very different. But Ms. Farmer was already moving to more commercial, dance house-friendly music/videos in her last CD ; I love the concert video of ''C'est Dans L'air'' ). That is not to say that her choice of musique, ballads sometimes dark and controversial (''Cest Une Belle Journée'')(''Crier La Vie'' avec Moby), were never dance or remix-friendly. On the contrary, many of her greatest hits have all the elements of great dance tracks. While some of her past videos were highly dramatic mini-fims, complete with plots and sometimes running 10 minutes long (I'm thinking of ''Désenchantée'' here), she has also experimented with more ''traditional'' music videos (''Je T'aime Mélancolie'').

Ms. Farmer is undoubtedly very talented, so it is great to see her continue to experiment across a wide artistic range. J'adore !

''Oui Mais ... Non'' - Music Video

Mlyène Farmer - ''Oui Mais ... Non'' - The Music Video

The official music video for Mylène Farmer's latest hit single, "Oui mais... non," has been released.

It was reported that Ms. Farmer RedOne, known for his work with Lady Gaga to produce and write the music for the single. Ms. Farmer's new album, entitled Bleu Noir, is set to release on 6 December 2010.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Cathie Black Nomination Doomed

Opposition Grows to Mayor Bloomberg’s Pick for NYC Schools Chancellor

In The New York Daily News, the President of United Federation of Teachers, Michael Mulgrew, expressed criticisms of Mayor Michael Bloomberg's appointment of Cathleen Black to succeed Joel Klein as the next schools chancellor.

The appointment has created a public outrage that proves to expose growing voter anger at Mayor Bloomberg's misuse of mayoral powers, especially in the aftermath of the term limits scandal.

The same Daily News article reported that Chairman of the City Council's Education Committee, Robert Jackson, disputed the mayor's claim that the mayor had engaged in a public process in making the nomination. Councilman Jackson called the mayor's insinuation a, "lie," and Councilman Jackson added that he would hold hearings on the appointment.

The blogger, artist, and political commentator Suzannah B. Troy has even created a YouTube video in which she criticises Ms. Black.

Meanwhile, in a separate article in The New York Times, the mayor's office is described to be in serious damage control. The public ''uproar'' has ''frustrated City Hall aides, who feel as if they have lost control of the story line and who are looking for ways to beat back accusations that Ms. Black is unqualified, said an individual close to the process who requested anonymity for fear of upsetting the mayor,'' wrote the reporter Javier C. Hernandez in The Times.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Alan Bounville is Fasting for LGBT Civil Rights

Call Sen. Gillibrand : 1-212-688-6262

A link to this new YouTube video has been added to the link list at the bottom of the Civil Rights page on The Huffington Post.

Mr. Bounville began a water-only fast on Election Day, November 2, 2010, and he has said that he will continue fasting until Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) or another member of Congress introduced the American Equality Bill, or similar legislation, that would extend civil rights to LGBT Americans and thereby end most major forms of discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

Mr. Bounville, Iana Di Bona, Joe Birdsong, and other activists kept a vigil for 36 consecutive days outside Sen. Gillibrand's New York City campaign office before Mr. Bounville began his fast. During that time, the Honourable Senator did not acknowledge the LGBT activists.

For more information, please visit :