Saturday, April 19, 2008

4/19/2008 Community Gumbo

Listen | Democracy Now (4/17/08)
  • ABC News Coming Under Criticism for Focus of Obama, Clinton Debate
  • Nader’s Running Mate Matt Gonzalez on the Dems, the War and the Strategy for November
  • Law Professor Lawrence Lessig on Net Neutrality, the Rise of Google and His “Change Congress” Project to Take on Corruption in Washington

New Orleans Affordable Housing Options Diminish as Public Housing Demolition Continues (re-broadcast)
Listen | Part 1: Women stand in line to apply for housing assistance as demolition commences on the Lafitte Housing Development across the street.

Listen | Part 2: A woman turned away from a Housing Authority of New Orleans office is told she has to come back after she has a case worker assigned.

Demolition of the Lafitte Housing Development commenced, even as women stood in line across the street hoping to obtain Section 8 housing assistance expressed frustration in their search for affordable housing in post-Katrina New Orleans.
Photo: Children play basketball at dusk in the ruins of the B.W. Cooper Housing Development (Community Gumbo).


Coleman Warner, "Unanimous," The Times-Picayune, December 21, 2007.
Unbowed by days of caustic protests, the New Orleans City Council on Thursday unanimously approved the demolition of four sprawling public housing developments, launching a new era in the troubled history of a social safety net launched in the World War II era. [more]

Coleman Warner, Michelle Krupa and Gwen Filosa, "Demolition protests ignore some realities," The Times-Picayune, December 15, 2007.
As opponents of a federal push to raze old-line public housing developments protested last week about uncaring bureaucrats, racism, greedy developers and shattered communities, a claim that has gained traction in Washington and the national media moves beyond perception and into the realm of demonstrably false: That displaced public housing residents have no place to live. [more]

"Nagin chides protesters," The Times-Picayune, December 15, 2007.
Mayor Ray Nagin called the planned demolition of aging public housing in New Orleans a "no win-win" situation and chided protesters who he said have never lived in the developments. [more]

Jarvis DeBerry, "Public housing: plot or paradise?," December 21, 2007.
Do you believe that the American government was engaged in a conspiracy against black people when it began building huge apartment complexes that served to concentrate poverty?

Or, do you believe that the American government's hatred for black people is evident in its decision to tear down huge apartment complexes that were occupied exclusively by the poor? [more]

Bruce Alpert, "HUD secretary leaving the job; Departure comes amid investigations," April 01, 2008
HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson, whose advocacy for a plan to demolish public housing units in New Orleans and replace them with mixed-income developments generated international controversy, announced Monday that he will leave the job April 18. [more]

Endesha Juakali, "Old units razed, replacements unfinanced," The Times-Picayune, Letter to the Editor, April 3, 2008.
I grew up in public housing, served on the HANO board and currently advise displaced St. Bernard residents who wish to participate in the redevelopment of their community. I am appalled by the lies our elected officials have told to bolster their efforts to eliminate public housing and, by extension, rid the city of the low-wage work force that has been the bedrock of our tourism economy. [more]

Lolis Eric Elie, Housing has council hanging up," April 07, 2008.
It's understandable why Jackson didn't want to talk about allegations that he sought to rig contracts in New Orleans, Philadelphia and the Virgin Islands. What isn't clear is why New Orleans officials are so reluctant to talk about it. [more]

Rebecca Mowbray, "Developers yet to nail down financing needed for work," April 09, 2008.
Although demolition of the sturdy brick buildings at Lafitte is scheduled to begin this week, developers still have not secured all of the financing to replace the "big four" public housing complexes with mixed-income communities. [more]

Katy Reckdahl, "Razing of Lafitte could start today," April 10, 2008.
Today, backhoes could start tearing into the bricks of the Lafitte public housing development, the last of the "Big Four" complexes to come down.

The St. Bernard, C.J. Peete, and B.W. Cooper complexes have largely been reduced to rubble. But Lafitte, which occupies eight blocks of Orleans Avenue starting at North Claiborne Avenue, got a two-month reprieve. Mayor Ray Nagin withheld its demolition permit until the U.S. Department of Urban Development addressed issues of developer financing and alternate affordable housing. [more]

Listen | Protesters Converge on New Orleans to Challenge the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America Conference
An in-studio conversation with Kathy Chandler on the symbolism of President Bush's SPP conference being hosted in New Orleans, and what the goals of the SPP really are.

Music Played
Kansas Joe & Memphis Minnie, "When the Levee Breaks"

Bessie Smith, "Money Blues," Nobody's Blues But Mine, Columbia Records, 1972.

Howlin' Wolf, "Come Back Home," The Blues Years, Sun Records, 1984.


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