Categories

Going Old School with the Teachers’ Union

New Orleans    I have hugely mixed feeling about my old high school in New Orleans, but finally I found myself in a situation, sitting next to another alum, my daughter, Dine’, where I found that I had never been prouder of the teachers at Benjamin Franklin High School than on that night in that auditorium.   [...]

Jazz Fest Highlights the Contractions of New Orleans

bicycle memorial on st. claude

New Orleans     The annual Jazz and Heritage Festival or Jazz Fest, as it’s universally known in New Orleans, has become a big time event over the years.   I had folks come into town for a board meeting recently and trying to find a place the out-of-towners would like to try, several [...]

Katrina’s 8th Anniversary and the ACORN Farm

New Orleans   Even in New Orleans we have been saying for years that the devastation of Hurricane Katrina and even the recovery has fallen off the front pages, but on the 8th anniversary, even in the local papers you have to search for any mention of the storm, and elsewhere the date is passing unnoticed, even [...]

Tom Wooten’s Disaster Myopia: Too Close and Too Far Away

Rock Creek   Yes, I still read Katrina books, even as we are fast approaching the beginning of the 9th year since the storm on August 29, 2005.  Having written one myself, I respect the small fraternity of writers who have tried with varying success to put their arms around the disaster and somehow wrestle lessons [...]

Locating Housing for the Poor: Good Intentions, Expediency, and Living with the Consequences

Robert Moses, seated at left in 1959, used his position as head of the Mayor's Committee on Slum Clearance to mass-produce thousands of units of public housing, often near the shoreline.

 Quito    One of the ironic outcomes of recent disasters, whether New Orleans or now New York, is that the public, policy makers, and politicians [...]

Hurricane Sandy Rapid Response from Occupy and Others

New Orleans   In The Battle for the Ninth Ward:  ACORN, The Rebuilding of New Orleans, and the Lessons of Disaster, published last year, I had added the Lessons appendix as more and more community-based organizations sought to meet the challenges of the unexpected natural disasters that are cropping up all around us, whether in the [...]