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City Councilman Loves Coldplay

Late Friday afternoon, Mayor Nutter attempted to sneak the list of mayor’s box attendees at the sports complex from Oct. to the end of 2008 past everyone. Ooh, tricky tricky!

Yours truly will not fall for such Friday news dumps, however. And so I downloaded the full list of attendees. It was pretty boring, actually; just pages and pages of empty listings for Phantoms games, lots of tickets going to the Democratic City Committee and every Disney on Ice show with a box that’s completely full.

Of everything, though, this stuck out:

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Looks like Bill Green and his wife just can’t get enough of that Coldplay! Hmm. I’ll give him a pass this time, but if he’s caught attending another disappointing Brit band that’s a worse version of late U2/early Radiohead…

DiCicco Floats Handbill Ban

111708postnobills.jpg Councilman Frank DiCicco is going to save us from the scourge of the city, ubiquitous thai menus:

Frank DiCicco, councilman for the first district, says in his South Philadelphia neighborhood handbills usually end up not inside the recipients’ homes, but as litter in the gutter:

“Pizza shops, restaurants, take-out food restaurants, car washes: small businesses who hire people to go and circulate hand bills that ultimately wind up in the street.”

So DiCicco is pushing a measure that would require those small businesses to leave hand bills only in the hands of actual homeowners, or face fines.

Geeze. Don’t these small business owners know only places that have enough money for a billboard should be able to little the city with their crap?

Photo by striatic used under a Creative Commons license

Wilson Goode Aide In New Shocking Unintentionally Hilarious Interview

It’s been about a month since we all decided to forget the name Latrice Bryant, the aide to Councilman Wilson Goode who makes $90,000 a year to call Fox 29 racist during City Council meetings.

Well, for some reason, today she’s doing an interview with NBC 10’s Harry Hairston! At both 4 and 11!

Hairston explains how nonsensical the interview is going to be:

“I think on one hand I was able to understand some of her concerns and what she felt,” Hairston said. “But on the other hand I was a little bit confused as far as what she can see from this. What did she learn? Can’t you see how this looks?”

Bryant again cited race as a factor, Hairston added.

“There’s a tone of race in her interview,” he said. “I don’t know why. That didn’t fully come out.”

So it seems like she will continue to act like she is boinking Councilman Goode, surely a good way to bolster denials of a romantic relationship.

There isn’t an election anymore to get peoples’ minds off this whole situation, so it’ll be interesting to see what, if anything, Goode does to get the local media’s attention away from it. My suggestion: A cute wittle itty bitty puppy should do the trick. If not: Geeze, I dunno, drop C4 on a city block?

Goode’s aide will tell her story during televised interview today [Daily News]

City Council Calls For Day Games

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A million billion years ago (i.e., October 2007), Philadelphia City Council took time out to demand Roberto Clemente’s number for all teams. That hasn’t happened, of course, and so City Council has decided to weigh in on baseball matters again:

Councilman Jim Kenney’s resolution calls on the league to change its rules to require at least one day game during the playoffs and the World Series. This year’s series World Series games all started around 8:30 p.m. The resolution, approved by Council, said day games would ensure that “youths can share in the excitement of these games and we can preserve the next generation of baseball fans.” The resolution also noted that some games ended after midnight, meaning young fans had to go to bed not knowing the final score.

Ahh, yes, perhaps we can start the games at around 1 or 2 p.m., so our youths can share in the excitement of skipping school to watch the World’s Series!

Photo via Library of Congress

Red Light Cameras To Circle City Hall

At first, only Northeast Philly’s residents had to deal with red light cameras on the Boulevard. Now they’ve slowly been creeping around the city, collecting big fines for the state, big contracts for the red light camera companies and big campaign contributions for the politicians (from the red light camera companies).

And now they’re going to put red light cameras outside City Hall, because it will lead to instant free hilarity when a politician gets a fine in the mail and attempts to get out of it.

Councilman Jim Kenney is talking about the rampant red-light running around City Hall. He says a pedestrian could get hit: “Especially in some of the blind spots, when you step off the curb around Dilworth Plaza, and people are speeding up and you can’t see them coming until they’re right on top of you. We need to modify the behavior, and the cameras have clearly modified behavior in other parts of the city. And I think it’ll do it around City Hall.”

Yeah, cameras, the complete behavior-modification system. I can’t wait ’til they start to have these things for pedestrians. It might not happen until 2070, but there will be riots.

Next Location for Phila. Red Light Cameras: Around City Hall [KYW 1060]
Photo by functoruser used under a Creative Commons license

Latrice Bryant’s New Tactic Even More Annoying

Yes, as expected, the Fox 29 are racist story just won’t die. And, as also expected, Latrice Bryant has issued an apology for holding up signs that also said “Jeff Cole KKK.”

It’s okay, though: She didn’t apologize to Jeff Cole, just to Wilson Goode (her boss at her $90K-a-year job) and other members of City Council: “I sincerely apologize to you, to City Council President Anna Verna, to all other City Council members and staffers… and especially to all residents and taxpayers of Philadelphia.” Ooh, does that count as Jeff Cole?

Anyway, now she’s going to do what she should have done in the first place, says her lawyer in another letter:

“I agree that my client’s reaction was inappropriate. I explained to her that the appropriate response would have been to do exactly what she later did. And that was to contact an attorney who could determine whether or not Fox29’s relentless paparazzi-like conduct… was libelous and slanderous, thereby warranting the filing of a defamation lawsuit.”

Woo-hoo! Maybe she can file the lawsuit from prison, where she will soon be along with the rest of Philadelphia’s residents.

Aide to Goode issues an apology [sic, kinda] [Inquirer]

Shocking New Developments In The ‘Fox 29 Are Racist’ Case

When Latrice Bryant held up signs calling Fox 29 racist last week, who knew it would become the hottest political story since Frank Keel crashed a shark mascot’s press conference? Jeff Cole got things going with this promo while Claudia Gomez sought the commentary of Al Sharpton.

Then a newspaper columnist suggested imprisonment for a protest sign; the responses to her column are more art than commentary. thelastRepublicaninPhilly: “I can see it now; if we make the tragic mistake of electing Obama; he’ll take some advice from Goode and hire goons to keep away those pesty reporters (’just one second sweetie’). He’ll have his goons rooming around in press conferences just to make sure they ask the right questions. I know a few other countries that have socialized health care, high taxes and and restricted freedom of speech.” Djata: “It’s even funnier how this paper censors legitimate intellectual ideas.” And, finally, Philly Guy: “You can put nice suits on thugs, give them (they really don’t have to earn them) decent jobs, expect nothing from them, pay them an extremely nice salary, allow them to act like they are respectable in respectable surroundings and at the end they are what we all know they are ….. thugs. There has been this double standard where black behavior can sink to any level they want and there are no recriminations.” Comment number two, Philly Guy; that’s an impressive dedication to nonsensical racism.

And I haven’t even mentioned Bryant’s incredible Myspace page.

Today, more developments: Councilman Goode both defended and bashed the media, Chris Brennan reports. His buzzword: Media diversity — rather, the lack thereof. While he loves freedom of speech, he also didn’t like being followed around by Jeff Cole.

“For the last week, it appears as if the press doesn’t care about my mission either. But I care about my mission. I believe in freedom of the press, even with its lack of diversity. Many black elected officials would never admit it but the lack of diversity in the press is a major issue for us. In fact, many don’t feel that the freedom of speech applies equally to them.”

Councilman Goode probably has quite a few insightful things to say about being a black politician covered largely by an all-white press. Could be a fascinating conversation. Of course, though, none of this would have gotten the publicity it did had his aide not held up a sign that read, “Fox 29 are racist.” Jeff Cole goes out and annoys local powerful people almost every week. “Fox 29 Investigates” saying a Philadelphia politician and his aide are screwing the public trust isn’t going to land on the front page of the Metro section. Hell, a timesheet problem is more notable.

Jeff Cole is apparently spending his time recording awesome promos; Claudia Gomez covered Goode in City Hall today. She seems a dogged enough reporter who appears to get bumped quite easily. There’s video on Fox’s site, but the real treasure is the photo gallery, which I’ve excerpted above. Larger (~1MB) version after the jump. Deinterlace your video before taking screenshots next time, guys!

More »

Rev. Al Weighs In On Jeff Cole

If you asked me how Fox 29 could make this Jeff Cole/Fox 29 are racist sign story even better, I might have come up with some decent ideas. But I never would have come up with the idea of slying asking Al Sharpton to weigh in! Yes, this is incredible; but what makes it better is how he talks in general terms, making everyone wonder: Was he just asked about it in general terms, too?

Really, though, who cares. This is some of the best entertainment from a news station in months. The summer doldrums are over!

The Signs That Shook The World

In case you didn’t notice, here’s a screengrab from yesterday’s Fox 29 promo. I’m not so much befuddled about the “Fox 29 are racist” construction but by this thought: Nobody had a Sharpie to make sure the sign showed up better on TV? Geeze, that’s just kind of poor planning.

Goode’s Aide: Fox 29 Is Racist

Do you know who Latrice Bryant is? Right. Apparently, she’s an aide to Councilman Wilson Goode. And Jeff Cole and his team of crack Fox 29 reporters have been following Bryant around for some report about “city employees slacking off on the job” or something.

Bryant, therefore, did the only sensible thing: Hold up signs during today’s City Council meeting calling Fox 29 racist. And another one that said KKK! (To be fair, Jeff Cole is known to wear white? Geeze, I dunno.)

Clout gives us the scoop:

Cole confronted Goode after Council’s session wrapped up, asking if he thought Fox29’s reporting was racist. Goode didn’t break stride as reporters rushed after him.

Cole’s questions involved videotape he says Fox29 has of Bryant, while listed as working in City Hall: a) working out in the gym and b) walking with Goode into his house with a case of beer and c) leaving Goode’s house looking as if she had spent the night there.

Goode responded that a) his employees had not been filling out their work time sheets daily, which led to mistakes that have been corrected and b) who he goes to his house with is his business and c) Cole’s question was disrespectful.

Jeff Cole is following Wilson Goode all the way to his house and seeing who he kicks back and gets drunk with? Man, this is the best thing this station has done since May.

And don’t think I didn’t notice Wilson Goode’s clever strategy: Have an aide hold up signs calling Jeff Cole racist, then when questioned about it by Cole himself, call him disrespectful. That’s a rhetorical strategy usually reserved for a blog! I am impressed.

Councilman Goode’s Aide Calls Fox29 “Racist” [Clout]