Archive for November, 2008

by (RSS) Shelby County government | November 30th, 2008 10:47pm CDT | Comments Off on Mayors’ Old Consolidation Tapes Defy New Realities For Future

We get frustrated at times by the inescapable feeling that our city is trapped in a time warp. We are recycling old conversations, old charges and old complaints. But whenever we need perspective, we can simply say consolidation in front of the small town mayors of Shelby County and watch them respond in ways that […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 27th, 2008 11:58pm CDT | Comments Off on The Economic Benefits Of Small Changes

Our colleague Carol Coletta is once again plowing new ground in exploring ways that cities can be more competitive and can fulfill their roles as engines for the national economy. To get an intriguing view of the profound impact that can come from incremental improvements in talent, green behavior and poverty, go to the CEOs […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 27th, 2008 11:48pm CDT | Comments Off on Greener, Smarter And Healthier Cities

This week’s guests offer advice on making your city greener, healthier and smarter. Lawrence Katz is the co-author of the book, The Race between Education and Technology. In it, he describes how the 20th century American education system made this nation the richest in the world. He’ll tell us why the third great education transformation, […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 25th, 2008 6:33pm CDT | Comments Off on Department Of Justice Indicted For Political Profiling

To follow up yesterday’s post, we wanted to put the issue of possible politicized indictments into context. Two professors – Dr. Donald C. Shields of University of Missouri in St. Louis and Professor John F. Cragan of Illinois State University – have been engaged in an ongoing study of investigations by the U.S. Department of […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 24th, 2008 10:42pm CDT | Comments Off on Current Federal Prosecutors Should Pass On Marquee Investigation

Here’s our early Christmas wish: that the lame duck U.S. Attorney’s office leave its investigative file involving Memphis Mayor Willie W. Herenton for its successor. We hear that there are some spirited discussions taking place in the federal prosecutor’s office about the timing and extend of any action. While some zealous career attorneys feel that […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 21st, 2008 7:21pm CDT | Comments Off on Job Opening: City Hall Statesman

OK, now that we’ve all vented, what can we do to solve the divisive problem of police recruiting? Our problem has been that the vote was like many taken in legislative bodies from Memphis to Washington, D.C. It was cast with tunnel vision and without an understanding of its symbolic importance or its actual importance […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 20th, 2008 10:39pm CDT | Comments Off on Voting To Make Memphis A City Of Choice

Memphis is not a city that is retaining and attracting young people with choices. That’s a critical problem, because if there is a mantra for cities today, it’s this: It’s the talent, stupid. Because there are several million fewer 25-34 year-olds – the fuel for the knowledge economy – these highly coveted workers have never […]

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by (RSS) Economic Development | November 19th, 2008 10:44pm CDT | Comments Off on City Council Vote Is About More Than Police Recruiting

What a difference 24 hours can make. We were actually planning to write today about the positive impact and leadership that the new, improved version of the Memphis City Council is providing. Traditionally, the elected officials with the lowest public approval rating, we have been impressed by the new sense of purpose and fresh thinking […]

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by (RSS) Memphis City Schools | November 19th, 2008 12:57am CDT | Comments Off on Schools Have Nowhere To Go But Up (We Hope)

Two-thirds of the schools in the Memphis district do not meet state benchmarks. That’s some of the worst news Memphians have ever received from the recent state report card on schools; however, it sets up new Memphis City Schools Superintendent Kriner Cash to appear to be a miracle worker in the next couple of years. […]

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by (RSS) Poverty | November 16th, 2008 7:14pm CDT | Comments Off on Worrying About Source Of Blog Instead Of Source Of Crime

It’s not just that Memphis Police Director Larry Godwin wasted $88,000 in scarce city money pursuing an obsession worthy of Moby Dick. It’s that with looming layoffs in City Hall, that money could have kept two rank-and-file city employees on the job and of the unemployment rolls in some tough economic times. We’ve been giving […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 15th, 2008 7:27pm CDT | Comments Off on In Memory Of Dr. Walter Walker

Walter Walker’s name hadn’t appeared in The Commercial Appeal in a long time – so long that it’s hard to remember that he was once one of the people whose presence gave us so much hope for Memphis’ future. His obituary was in today’s editions. Those who met him in the past couple of decades […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 14th, 2008 9:33pm CDT | Comments Off on Crossing Boundaries: In The Region And In The World

Sometimes a city’s influence goes beyond its borders well into the region. Our guests this week both work with this idea of the global influence of cities. Saskia Sassen is professor of sociology and a member of the Committee on Global Thought at Columbia University. Her work focuses on globalization and global cities. We’ll speak […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 14th, 2008 12:20am CDT | Comments Off on Wanted: Creative City Agenda For Memphis

Someone emailed to ask what we would do to set a “creativity movement” in motion in Memphis. The answer came quickly: “Appoint Jeff Nesin the Memphis czar of creativity.” That’s because we don’t know anyone who understands the importance of creatives and the creative economy more than the gifted president of the Memphis College of […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 12th, 2008 11:14pm CDT | Comments Off on Creative Inspiration For Memphis

To continue the creativity theme for the week, we have a few things that we think will interest you. First, CEOs for Cities, headed up by our good friend and colleague Carol Coletta, continues to see cities through its decidedly unique and provocative lens, and its new video makes a compelling case for the huge […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 12th, 2008 1:25am CDT | Comments Off on Celebrating Memphis Creativity In Living Color

William Eggleston is the Elvis Presley of American photography. A rock star. Because of it, it’s turned out to be the perfect week for us here to concentrate on creativity and the creative sparks that are as much a part of our city as the Mississippi River. Ever iconoclastic and ever talented, Mr. Eggleston was […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 10th, 2008 2:27am CDT | Comments Off on Creativity As An Economic Force For Memphis

There are times when a conversation becomes a cause, and a meeting becomes a movement. Hopefully, that will be the case as a result of the “Creative Conversation” that took place a couple of weeks ago at Memphis College of Art, which sponsored the discussion along with MPACT Memphis. It was a bracing evening. Most […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 9th, 2008 4:13pm CDT | Comments Off on This Week On Smart City: City Quality – Public Spaces And Design

Public space is important in both cities and in buildings. We’ll talk to two people who are attempting to re-imagine those public spaces both inside and out. Antony Wood is the Executive Director of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat. He studies and reports on all aspects of the planning, design and construction […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | November 6th, 2008 9:36pm CDT | Comments Off on Wrists Slapped In Campaign Law Violation

It’s probably just us, but it’s hard for us to imagine that if it had been urban Memphis rather than Germantown that Attorney General Bill Gibbons would have been as cavalier about enforcing campaign laws. Mix in a name like Ford, and it seems unfathomable that the culprits would essentially be told to say they’re […]

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