Saturday, August 3, 2013

Detroit's bankrupt, Baltimore City Councilman Bobby Curran's bankrupt. Who's next, Baltimore City?

Can A Bankrupt Councilman Be Trusted By A City Facing Fiscal Woes?

Filed by A.F. James MacArthur Ph.A.L.

For the 1.21 to 1.25 million Americans who will file for bankruptcy this year, the move represents a low point in their lives. 

The reasons for filing are as varied as fingerprints; loss of income due to unemployment, unexpected disability and other health issues, and often just poor money management. In this era of frequent downsizing, layoffs, and company closings, there are many Americans seriously hurting.

When a gainfully employed, 18 year Baltimore City Council veteran, -- part of a political family dynasty -- files for bankruptcy, should the public be concerned? Or is it just a personal matter that ought to remain private? 

It's not as if Robert Curran's income was suddenly cut-off one day without warning. The man's enjoyed continuous steady employment for a period of time much longer than the average American.

What's disturbing is by his own account, Councilman Curran's bankruptcy came simply from living beyond his means, aka poor money management. For young people a few years out of college, this wouldn't be alarming. But for a 63-year-old man sitting on a 14 member council, responsible for administering literally billions of dollars of the people's money, you have to wonder how much of his financial acumen (or lack thereof) carries over to his work.

As every fee, tax and miscellaneous form of revenue that can be wrung from the wallets of citizens continues to increase, Baltimore residents are told it is because the city is out of money. They tell us the city needs more in order to be effective and provide essential services. This may be true, but how did this happen? Could the same type of financial irresponsibility -- likely going on for years -- causing Curran's dilemma, be what has been going on for at least the last 18 years, and it's now all coming to a head?

Average citizens who spend and live beyond their means have few options when they can no longer keep up the facade of their fantasy lifestyle. Tough choices have to be made, as reality demands action. For government on the other hand, they can always force citizens to pony up the buck to make up for mismanagement of money. After all, it's not their money anyhow.

Originally published in The Baltimore Spectator
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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

FACE OFF! Political Pundit Puts Mosby Out There... On Facebook

Filed by A.F. James MacArthur Ph.A.L.

Baltimore's political scene continues to be a good source of social media fodder. In this latest episode, well known political commentator, Hassan "Mr. Politics" Giordano, takes aim squarely at Boston native, Marilyn Mosby, prime challenger to State's Attorney Gregg Bernstein for the next election. Mosby is also the wife of city councilman Nick Mosby, one of Baltimore's more popular politicos with a social media presence.

The text below was posted by Giordano on Facebook this morning. After garnering lots of comments in a flurry of responses, the entire thing was suddenly deleted without explanation.
Hilarious how sensitive and insincere these politicos and wanna-be politicos are when you don't agree with them 100%! God forbid you actually write a non-bias article that points out inefficiencies, and they become so petty they 'unfriend' you on FB/Twitter!
How can you say you wanna represent the entirety of the Baltimore electorate, but get upset when someone you called a 'friend' doesn't say what YOU want them too, and then stomp off like a spoiled brat?! Do WE really want a State's Attorney like that??

When asked who he was talking about, Giordano came back with the following:

Ms. Mosby... Bernstein is still a Friend on FB and calls me himself if we don't agree, and we talk it out like ADULTS!

Don't need fake-a$$ people who claim to be Friends than act in such a childish manner! I guess anybody who supports/votes for Bernstein or Russell A Neverdon Sr will get unfriended as well huh?! SMDH...
My so-called biggest supporter and advocate earlier this year, who I had been urging to jump into the SA race since last year, shows her true colors when the rubber met the road!
Now she walks around with this fake ass air about her, talking tough but NOT saying nothing; and has the nerve to 'unfriend' me and talk about me behind my back because I support a TRUE FRIEND, Russell A Neverdon Sr who has a clue and plans to change the culture of the prosecutorial system here in Baltimore, not just trying to be a political figure head looking to create a political dynasty for themselves and their family!!?
He tried sitting down with her and was also rebuffed and talked to like a child by her and her arrogant husband! SMDH...yeah I said it, so what yal wanna do?!
The Baltimore Spectator contacted Giordano, and Mr. and Mrs. Mosby for comment. As of this writing, only Marilyn Mosby responded via twitter.

Researcher, independent investigative journalist, and entrepreneur, A.F. James MacArthur has been a member of the underground news network for nearly over 20 years.

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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

COCKED AND LOCKED - Baltimore Police Open For Business?

Public Invitation Runs Contrary To Reality

By A.F. James MacArthur Ph.A.L.

Is it too much to expect accurate information from the official Twitter account, of the 8th largest police department in the country? When dealing with the Baltimore Police Department, I learned a long time ago to be careful in taking them at their word.

Anyone who's ever had the unfortunate experience of seeking help at one of Baltimore's police stations could tell you how uninviting they are. From hidden rear entrances (many front door are condemned), to unstaffed desks, the decrepit, run down appearances are not exactly a comforting sight for a citizen in distress. And that's before you have to deal with the cops themselves!

Batts And The Bishop

Baltimore mega-church, New Psalmist Baptist, led by Bishop Walter S. Thomas Sr., decided they'd had enough of this embarrassment. Details aren't clear, but apparently they provided private funding and or other support, to renovate and reopen the front entrance of the police department's Northwestern District station.

So a Bishop and a Police Chief walk into a bar... 
(A.F. James MacArthur, Baltimore Spectator)
With great fanfare and upbeat announcements echoed by Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, the general public was invited to come on down to check it out. In the spirit of hard-core investigative journalism and bringing you "Truth To The Masses," The Baltimore Spectator decided to check out the spectacle, so you wouldn't have to. What we discovered might surprise you.

In the graphic below, a friendly, open invitation is extended to the general public via twitter at 12:54 p.m. Less than an hour later when we showed up, apparently someone must have seen us coming, because the doors were definitely locked. A lone detective could be seen in the video, briefly peering through the large front window, that would be the only welcome or acknowledge we got. There was no inquiry of  "may I help you?" No one asked, "is there something we can do for you?" Nope, not here.
The Baltimore Police Department was asked for clarification via Twitter (same venue as the invitation), but as of this writing (3:25 p.m.), there's been no response.

It should be pointed out, this incident is not the first time conflicting messages were delivered to the public by the police. We've had plenty experiences before.

Remember, if you're having an emergency, DO NOT go to your nearest neighborhood police station. That is, unless you don't mind being left on the outside looking in.

Community activist, independent journalist, and entrepreneur, A.F. James MacArthur is used to not being welcomed in public places.

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Friday, July 12, 2013

We Can Do This!

A Better Baltimore Is Possible


Driving through parts of Baltimore, with it's teeth shattering, car rattling, seemingly permanent potholes, it's easy to get the feeling that someone somewhere stopped caring a long time ago. 

A post apocalyptic feeling permeates the air in many neighborhoods. Abandoned homes, trash strewn vacant lots, and natives who often express a sense of dire desperation without saying a word, only add to an atmosphere of despair. The permanent enunciation worn on their faces tell a story without words.

How did things get so far gone? What's being done about it? Why does it seem like the city allows some areas to fall into severe neglect and disrepair while continually pumping resources into certain choice spots? These are questions I'm often asked by visitors and outside observers of the city I call home.

Then there's the vicious violence and murderous mayhem. It's literally destroying the very fabric of your society, ripping us apart by the seams, but we won't dwell on that subject very much in this space. We'll leave the chronicling and commentary of crime to our sister site, The Baltimore Spectator.

It's clear Baltimore is broken, and in my opinion, the path it's currently on is hardly one of true and sustainable progress.

Making Things Better

 If there's to be any hope of Baltimore building itself back up, it's gonna take all hands on deck. Making a once great city fit for families and human habitation in all zip codes, is going take full participation by all parties concerned.

This project by no means claims to be the solution to all that ails us. But we'd like to be part of progress in a city that so desperately needs it. 

It would be a lie to depict our goals and the tasks we'll have to perform to achieve them as easy. Anything worth having is worth working for. And hard work and perseverance would go a long way when coupled to a strategic vision backed by a comprehensive plan. There's simply no getting past this. 

Disappointments and setbacks are sure to come, but I'm confident we'll also have many victories and success to celebrate too.

In the coming days and weeks I'll be calling on you for help. Help in cultivating a more livable environment. To work with me in doing our part to reclaim a lost city. To give of your time, and yes, when needed, some of your money too.

Check back on this site for specific projects and initiative. There'll be instruction for participation. Oh, and of course your ideas, suggests and concepts are always welcome.

Here's to new beginnings and a promise to press on! It's my sincere hope that you'll buy into the vision and join me in building a better Baltimore.

Community activist, independent journalist, and entrepreneur, A.F. James MacArthur's roots run deep in the world of underground, alternative publications. First publishing a print newsletter with a small international falling in 1991, his path has since taken him on a vast array of varied media projects.

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