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Detroit, 2009: "there just isn't anyone left to kill."

Detroit's Road to Renewal - TIME
Asked recently about a dip in the city's murder rate, a mayoral candidate deadpanned, "I don't mean to be sarcastic, but there just isn't anyone left to kill." Detroit's motto, coined in 1827 to memorialize a devastating fire, translates from Latin as "We hope for better things; it shall arise from the ashes." But hope is in short supply. At 13%, Detroit's unemployment rate is the worst in the country among major metropolitan areas. City hall, long racked by corruption and cronyism, became a punch line last fall amid former mayor Kwame Kilpatrick's imprisonment. To make matters worse, the city is struggling to bankroll potential remedies. Its projected $300 million budget deficit recently spurred ratings agencies to downgrade its municipal bonds to junk status. (See pictures of Detroit's decline.) And yet if Detroit is the nexus of the Rust Belt's decay, it's also a signpost for where other ailing cities may be headed--and a laboratory for the sort of radical reconstruction needed to fend off urban decline. "People know that times are bad. But we're not going to roll over and die," says George Jackson, CEO of the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation. "To me, this is war. And I think we're going to win."

Maurren Dowd viciously attacks Twitter founders, looks like complete ass

Op-Ed Columnist - To Tweet or Not to Tweet - NYTimes.com

Well, she looks like even more of an uninformed and petulant ass than usual, which is really saying something.

Maureen Dowd: Was there anything in your childhood that led you to want to destroy civilization as we know it?

BIZ: You mean enhance civilization, make it even better?

Maureen Dowd: What’s your favorite book?

BIZ: I loved Sherlock Holmes when I was a kid.

Maureen Dowd: But you’ve helped destroy mystery.

BIZ: When you put more information out there, sometimes you can just put a little bit of it out, which just makes the mystery even broader.

. . .

Maureen Dowd: I would rather be tied up to stakes in the Kalahari Desert, have honey poured over me and red ants eat out my eyes than open a Twitter account. Is there anything you can say to change my mind?

BIZ: Well, when you do find yourself in that position, you’re gonna want Twitter. You might want to type out the message “Help.”

There is a lot of vicious reaction to Twitter in the media these days, and I'm not sure I totally get where it's coming from. Is it media professionals who feel threatened by legions of talented amateurs? Is it people who just don't want another thing to worry about? Are their bosses pressuring them to open an account for the visibility? Thoughts?

*Thanks, Julia!*

Freddie Mac CFO founde dead of suicide

WUSA9.com | Washington, DC | Freddie Mac Acting CFO Found Dead In Vienna

Police say Kellermann, 41 years old, was found in the basement of the home.

According to Freddie Mac's website, Kellerman was with Freddie Mac for more than 16 years and named Acting Chief Financial Officer in September.

Freddie Mac's interim CEO John Koskinen has released the following statement regarding the death of Kellermann.

"The Freddie Mac family is truly saddened by the news this morning of David Kellermann's death. We extend our deepest condolences to David's family and loved ones for this terrible personal tragedy."

April 21, 2009

Supreme Court Turns Down Challenge To Jury's Use Of Bible

Court Turns Down Challenge To Jury's Use Of Bible - CBS News

If you use Wikipedia or Google, it's a mistrial. If you rely on arcane laws from the bible, it's cool.

The Supreme Court has turned away a challenge from a death row inmate in Texas who claimed his constitutional rights were violated by jurors who consulted a Bible during deliberations.

Jurors reviewed a biblical passage relating that a murderer who used an iron object to kill "shall surely be put to death." They were deciding whether to impose a death sentence on Khristian Oliver for fatally shooting and bludgeoning his victim with the barrel of a gun.

The court previously has said that jurors should base their verdicts only on evidence presented in the courtroom.

April 19, 2009

If you park on the sidewalk in Moscow, pedestrians will set your car on fire

English Russia � Don’t Park Your Car Here

No joke.

Police find community of children living under Rome

BBC NEWS | Europe | Roman police find sewer children

Italian police have found more than 100 immigrants, including 24 Afghan children, living in the sewer system beneath railway stations in Rome.

The children range in age from 10 to 15 years and are now being looked after by the city's social services.