America’s Age of Austerity May Look a Lot Like London’s
August 16, 2011
The scenes of violence that emerged from London last week—the burning buildings and rampant looting, the police and firefighters under attack—were undeniably upsetting, but that’s not to say they were unfamiliar. The riots not only bore a strong resemblance to several recent instances of violent crime in the United States, they hearkened directly to the incendiary outbursts of racial violence that plagued this country from 1965 to 1968—from Watts in Los Angeles, to Detroit, to the H Street corridor in Washington D.C.
Los Angeles faces a 53-hour traffic nightmare this weekend when officials shut down a ten-mile stretch of the 405 Freeway for demolition work. The impending gridlock, which has been cleverly dubbed “Carmageddon,” could shock even L.A. drivers already used to the worst congestion in America: One official at the California Department of Transportation has warned of backups up to 64 miles long.
Elmer Pratt, the prominent Black Panther known by his nom de guerre, Geronimo ji-Jaga, died at 63 on June 2 in Tanzania. He had served 27 years in prison in Los Angeles for murder, the first eight in solitary confinement, and had been denied parole 16 times before his sentence was vacated and he was freed.
"The Departed," Whitey Bulger, and America's Most Wanted
June 23, 2011
There was more good news about the FBI's Ten Most Wanted list today: Just seven weeks after being able to mark "DECEASED" over Osama bin Laden's photo, the bureau can now mark "CAPTURED" over the picture of James "Whitey" Bulger, the South Boston mob boss wanted for 19 murders, not to mention racketeering, narcotics distribution, and extortion.
The Clock Paula Cooper Gallery One afternoon several months ago, I lingered on West 24th Street between 10th and 11th Avenues as a photographer shot two fashion models in haute punk outfits, with perilously spiky heels and raccoon-style eye makeup. Spring was at long last coming to the city, the final stubborn patches of filthy snow had melted away, and I was not the only person who stopped to watch as the photographer and his models spun their gritty-chic little Manhattan fantasy, the great-looking women vamping while an assistant adjusted a reflector and a stylist stood at the ready.
‘Paris: Life & Luxury in the Eighteenth Century’: A New Show That Proves Craft Is no Assurance of Quality
June 22, 2011
Walking through “Paris: Life & Luxury in the Eighteenth Century,” at the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, I was always conscious of the iron fist beneath the velvet glove. Although this panoramic view of the decorative arts in eighteenth-century France has its share of sleek and seductive surfaces, by the time I left the galleries I felt as if I had been mugged by the eight-hundred-pound gorilla of design shows. The level of craftsmanship is so daunting that it frequently registers as a form of aggression.
Between speeches in Los Angeles, New York and New Orleans, Rick Perry is doing his best to keep people guessing if and when he’ll throw his (ten-gallon) hat into the GOP presidential primary. When the Texas governor appeared last Tuesday on “Your World with Neil Cavuto,” the conservative Fox News host was already gushing over the hundreds of thousands of new jobs created in Texas in the past two years. When Cavuto asked how Perry had lured Carl’s Jr. restaurants to Texas, the governor flashed a trademark smile. “They love the smell of freedom,” he explained.
Metropolitan Boston ... #winning
June 17, 2011
with Carey Anne Nadeau With the Bruins’ defeat of riot-prone Canucks (who’d have thought?) Wednesday night in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals, the Boston area has now laid claim to a championship in each major American sports league (NHL, NBA, NFL, MLB) within the last seven years. The New England Patriots won their last Super Bowl in 2005; the Boston Red Sox won the World Series in 2007; and the Boston Celtics won the NBA title in 2008. Our analysis confirms that, indeed, Boston is the first metro area to achieve the distinction of having held all four major sports titles within such a sho
It's almost impossible to capture the hilarity of Newt Gingrich's presidential campaign, with his entire senior staff quitting, followed almost immediately by his entire Iowa staff quitting, followed by Gingrich announcing that he will begin his campaign all over again this weekend, as if the campaign to date were that season on "Dallas" that never happened: “I am committed to running the substantive, solutions-oriented campaign I set out to run earlier this spring,” Mr. Gingrich wrote.
David Thomson on Films: Hollywood Hopeful
June 07, 2011
You feel it’s a story you’ve heard before, but that’s often the way in Los Angeles where there are more scripts than cars on the street. This happened at a cottage on Benedict Canyon, one of those roads that wind down from the crest of Mulholland Drive to Sunset Boulevard. The cottage was tucked into the hillside, overgrown with ivy, shrubberies, and bad karma. It looked like the forsaken or forgotten house in a fairy story. Over a period of time, a neighbor noticed that its delivery box was crammed with more and more junk mail. So she decided to break into the house.