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August Wilson, gentrified

From the What Would Vannevar Blog: “Pittsburgh’s power players, all the institutions, thought they had a pretty good strategy for changing the leadership of the August Wilson Center. They allowed the AWC to flounder and fail, and figured they’d resurrect the AWC via bankruptcy. It [wasn’t] a bad strategy until the AWC real estate went onto the open market.

“But an [outside] player said — wait a minute, downtown property for $4M or $5M? That’s crazy low, I’ll pay $9M and still make money on it. This development confounds the Institutions and the Establishment, who have (perhaps for the first time) seen their pet plans thwarted by outside money, different perceptions of real estate value and the fact that in bankruptcy … it’s about the money.

“Downtown just got gentrified, and the Pittsburgh players can’t afford that house down the street they kind of had plans on. The peon in me loves that all the Suits have had their plan thwarted by the same forces they maintain are no-harm and virtuous when it happens in a poor neighborhood. The Pittsburgher in me sees that once again, the respect and needs of the A-A community are ignored in a power play of white money.”

The South’s Wild West

The Borowitz Report: “Flanked by members of his state’s legislature on Wednesday afternoon, Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal proudly unveiled Georgia’s new official state slogan, ‘We Make Florida Look Safe’ …

“ ‘When Florida passed Stand Your Ground, we knew we were playing catch-up,’ Gov. Deal said. ‘Thanks to the fine men and women in the Georgia state legislature, we’re No. 1.’

“Gov. Deal said he hoped that the state’s newly enacted Safe Carry Protection Act, which makes it legal to carry guns in bars, schools, churches and some government buildings, would send the message that Georgia was taking its competition with Florida ‘very, very seriously.’

“ ‘In recent years, if you wanted to fire off a gun any damn place you pleased, there was a sense that Florida was the state for you,’ he said. ‘We’re hoping to change that perception.’ ”

Lords of the Net

Pittsburgh’s Spork in a Drawer blog, under the headline “RIP Net Neutrality,” links to a New York Times piece:

WASHINGTON — The principle that all Internet content should be treated equally as it flows through cables and pipes to consumers looks all but dead.

The Federal Communications Commission said on Wednesday that it would propose new rules that allow companies like Disney, Google or Netflix to pay Internet service providers like Comcast and Verizon for special, faster lanes to send video and other content to their customers.

The Spork’s take: “Our Lords won’t be satisfied until they own it all. That they will also have the power to decide who gets what crumbs is gravy.”

The left on race

Greg Pollowitz at National Review: “Since liberals are so keen to point out the horrid comments of Cliven Bundy, I thought I would just remind readers of what Sen. Harry Reid said of then-candidate Obama:

Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid, D-Nev., apologized Saturday for referring to President Obama in private conversations during the 2008 presidential campaign as “light-skinned” and as having “no Negro dialect.”

“I deeply regret using such a poor choice of words,” Reid said in a statement. “I sincerely apologize for offending any and all Americans, especially African Americans, for my improper comments.”

“I expect that, if Bundy apologizes, the Left won’t be as quick to forgive, however.”

Probation for the powerful

Stephanie Hallet at the Ms. blog: “A mind-boggling report in a Delaware newspaper recently revealed that Robert H. Richards IV, heir to the DuPont chemical fortune, pleaded guilty in 2009 to raping his then-3-year-old daughter but got off without a lick of jail time. Instead, Judge Jan Jurden sentenced him to eight years probation. …

“Richards — unemployed and living on a trust fund — walked away with what amounts to a gentle slap on the wrist: a fine of $4,395; sex offender rehabilitation; and a ban on being near any children, including his own. Judge Jurden’s rationale … that Richards’ ‘treatment need exceeds need for punishment’—can only be described as flimsy.”

Compiled by Greg Victor (gvictor@post-gazette.com).


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