Wednesday, May 27, 2009

my current Sales Practices Manual tells me I am not to be engaged in blogging activity

I have never used this or any other blog for professional purposes.

That being said,  I am aware, as of today, that, for considerations relating to my registrations with The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA),  I am not to be engaged in blogging activity. Therefore, this is my last blog post; here’s the proximate rule, the one that most closely affects me:

Prohibited Activities
The below list is not intended to be inclusive of all of the instances in which the Firm will prohibit a communication with the public; rather it is intended to demonstrate some of the most common types of communications that are not approved. . . .
. . . Blogs: Interactive electronic forums such as blogs subject a member firm to various supervision and record keeping requirements. As such, no employee or affiliated person with the Firm may participate in blogs or other similar interactive electronic communications such as chat rooms.
WSP Online: Current Manual

And another, less proximate:

Electronic Chat Rooms, Blogs and Bulletin Boards
The fact that an individual is registered subjects him/her to a higher standard than members of the general public. Given the fast-paced environment of chat rooms, blogs and bulletin boards, casual or off-handed statements have the potential of crossing the line between being a reasonable opinion and an exaggerated or unwarranted claim. Because of the difficulties of supervision and the potential liabilities from participating in these forums, many firms limit or prohibit participation altogether.
Chat room participation by RRs is considered a public appearance. Therefore, RRs must follow the same requirements for participating in a chat room that they would if they were speaking in person before a group of investors. There are no filing requirements, but RRs are accountable under FINRA Conduct Rules and the federal securities laws for what they say regarding securities or services. Also, member firms are responsible for supervising the business-related activities of RRs including chat room participation. Remember, these rules apply regardless of whether an RR is in the office at home or a public computer.
In general, blogs and bulletin boards are considered advertisements and as such, all the content standards apply. Depending on the subject matter, firms may need to file these postings with FINRA.
RRs who are considering hosting a bulletin board, blog or chat room should contact their compliance department to determine whether such activities are permitted and what procedures may apply. Member firms must supervise the operation of any securities-related blog, bulletin board or chat room hosted by an RR or by the firm itself to ensure compliance with FINRA Conduct Rules and the federal securities laws. For example, a member firm may limit when commenters can post new messages to times when such messages can be monitored. A member firm may also require commenters to register and agree to abide by the terms of the Web site, including limitations on content.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Tomorrow at 11:00 AM: Denison Cemetery Memorial Day Service

We’re planning on being there tomorrow for the Memorial Day service’ this is a place of memories and history. One of the best speeches I ever heard was delivered here impromptu by Ruth Ketteringham at the Memorial Day service in 2006, a few months before her death at age 99 at the end of July. She was in a very special place at the time and spoke in metaphors that transcended our particular service, yet applied beautifully. I remember she spoke of God, water, gifts, stewardship, conservation, and creation.

Gloria put this notice on a couple of our other blogs earlier this evening:

Who:  A group of friends and neighbors are called together by another neighbor Rick Nicholson each year to remember those who served our country—living and dead.  We give thanks for those who protected the freedoms of our country so that we can live without fear. 

When:  Monday May 25, 2009

               11:00 am

Where:  Denison Cemetery, 2300 Ellen Alley, Cleveland, Ohio 44109

               Turn left Off  Pearl Road onto Garden Avenue  (north of Denison Avenue)

Posted by Gloria Ferris at 5/24/2009 07:16:00 PM

More background on the former Brooklyn Centre Burying Ground is at pp. 119-120 in Reflections from Brooklyn Centre: Presentations and Oral Histories from The Brooklyn Centre Historical Society. Links to information on the cemetery appear at--

Denison Avenue: Denison Cemetery Memorial Day Service

Thursday, May 21, 2009

great ideas from mid-state: The Lazarus Building creates a distinction for Columbus

Here are a few great ideas about sustainability and preservation coming out of the Columbus Chamber of Commerce.  The ideas are both specific to the Lazarus project and also applicable to “green buildings” in general. I’ve provided the entire text here in case the site page goes away after a while.

The Lazarus Building

Once a thriving department store and Columbus landmark, Lazarus has been renovated into a premier "green" office space. Located in the heart of downtown, the Lazarus Building is once again a prominent destination due to its innovative method of redevelopment. The method included recycling more than 75 percent of the materials removed from the facility and the inclusion of a rooftop living garden which keeps the building cool. The Lazarus Building is the most significant "green" building in the country and is certified Gold through the LEED Program. The Lazarus Building provides space for 2,600 jobs in Downtown Columbus.

History/Value of Renovating the Lazarus Building:
  • Important not to demolish the building – it's a community and historic landmark.
  • The Lazarus Building is actually seven buildings, the first building – the East Building – opened in 1909. The other additions were added over the following 60 years. Reconstruction involved dealing with diverse structural systems, differing elevations, unseen and unknown conditions. Significant aspects of this project resembled an exercise in urban archaeology as much as executing 21st century construction.
  • The renovation was a tipping point and a showcase for Mayor Michael Coleman's "Get Green" program.
  • The renovation of Lazarus could be viewed as an "anchor" for the redevelopment of downtown.
  • Lazarus could be a "sample box" – an example for all of Columbus and Ohio to better understand what it means to develop a landmark building with environmental sustainability as its central focus.
  • A larger objective was to enable residents of Columbus and surrounding areas to utilize the Lazarus Building as a "teaching tool" and learning experience for students, real estate professionals such as contractors, architects and developers, and residents working or living downtown. Through displays, exhibits and tours, they can understand the lessons of Lazarus and utilize these lessons in their daily, personal and professional lives.
Six major hallmarks of "Green Buildings"
  • Sustainable Development
    • The recycling of existing buildings, such as Lazarus, rather than building new buildings both conserves resources and helps revitalize urban centers.
  • Energy Conservation
    • Buildings use 65 percent of all electricity within the United States.
    • Efficient building systems and “daylight harvesting” for Lazarus’ oversized windows and center atrium enable the building's energy systems to operate 30 percent more efficiently and at a reduced cost.
  • Clean Air and Global Warming
    • Buildings consume more than 40 percent of the energy produced in the country, adding to the emission of CO2 and other Greenhouse Gases.
    • Efficient mechanical systems, conservation and support for renewable energy sources such as wind power improve air quality and minimize the adverse impact of CO2 and other emissions.
  • Water Conservation
    • Water usage in U.S. buildings accounts for 42 billion gallons per day, which equals 88 percent of our nation’s potable water supply.
    • Lazarus' "grey water system" and highly efficient plumbing fixtures reduce water consumption by up to 80 percent.
  • Indoor Air Quality
    • Non-toxic adhesives, sealants and paints were used throughout the building, and adhering during construction to stringent air quality plan created a superior interior environment - conducive to increased worker productivity.
  • Resource Conservation
    • Buildings use 50 percent of all woods and materials nationally, while construction waste is estimated to account for 150 million tons each year.
    • Lazarus' recycling programs, during demolition, reconstruction and occupancy were all geared to conserve resources and reduce energy consumption.
Green Characteristics of Lazarus:
  • "Art Deco" lobby consisting of architecture similar to the 1920's, while utilizing 21st century materials.
  • 7-Story light well, efficient building systems and "daylight harvesting" for Lazarus' oversized windows and center atrium enables the building's energy systems to operate 30 percent more efficiently and at a reduced cost.
  • The lobby and all other finished spaces in Lazarus were constructed using recycled products or are considered sustainable.
  • The floor in the lobby is terrazzo from recycled glass.
  • The elevator and trim is recycled metal.
  • The wall trim is made from wheat board instead of customary drywall.
  • Bamboo was used as a flooring material because it’s a sustainable material. Bamboo is not a tree—it's a grass, and it grows like one. Many species of bamboo can grow two feet or more a day. When it's harvested, it need not be replanted, because it will grow a new shoot from its extensive root system. So bamboo renews itself readily, unlike hardwood trees, which, once cut, are gone forever. Bamboo is an endlessly renewable resource.
  • Green planted roof – 1/3 of an acre in size – with living plants reduces summer heat buildup.
  • Rainwater is harvested for cooling.
  • 75 percent of the construction and demolition debris was recycled.
  • Low-flow plumbing.
  • Energy efficient windows that reduce utility cost by 25 percent.
  • Recycled materials were used wherever possible.

The Lazarus Building recycled more than 50 percent of the materials removed from the project.

For more information on green buildings, visit

Lazarus Building

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Jamie Janos appears in Artists and the Recession - The New York Times > Arts > Slide Show > Slide 4 of 10

Our friend photographer James O. Janos, raised on Mapledale in our Archwood-Denison neighborhood, was in the New York TIMES yesterday, along with a great, great backdrop of Cleveland.

Artists and the Recession - The New York Times > Arts > Slide Show > Slide 4 of 10

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Cleveland, Ohio, medical mart may have to fend off another competitor based in Nashville, Tennessee: Central Planning tries to outrun the Capitalists

This whole medmart drill is getting to be delicious. I added the “Ohio” to the headline to make sure we didn’t get confused with Cleveland, Tennessee, or any of the other US cities called “Cleveland” which, as we shrink and they grow, we rapidly approach in size and mission-criticality. The drill thus far: First, our local lightweights introduce their friends as the major players and beneficiaries, and tell us we should be grateful that they’d even deign to look in our direction; then, they confiscate public dollars for their friends and for the local medical community by imposing a tax increase without putting it to a vote; then, they bog down as everybody sees the dollars in motion and tries to pile onto the FREE STUFF wagon.

That 1991 Oldenburg FREE Stamp down by the city hall takes on new levels of meaning for me every day. It is indeed a work of art, and I am beginning to become aware.

Entrepreneurs with capitalist leanings in New York and Nashville eventually notice the feeding frenzy around the central planning pork barrel and decide to fund what’s basically a good idea quickly and privately, thus doing an end-around on a particularly vulgar fray and display of greed. The Nashville people decide to use CNL for financing; Kennedy’s partner Vornado still has not stepped up and offered financing, being content to extort the local tax base until the game ends, one way or the other. Why hasn’t Kennedy offered to execute in a capitalistic way? Perhaps because he knows he’s frolicking on the North Coast of the Welfare-Queen State, with the lightweights?

I’d say it’s time to give the unvoted tax increase to the RTA for free public transit to match our free public education, add the kicker of beginning the MedicalMarijuanaMerchandiseMart (4M?) right now, on a street corner, out of a suitcase, and get private financing for the mart to hold the rest of the medical merchandising displays, just like the big boys.

If you want to be the first on your block, you gotta hustle.

And let’s get over these self-esteem issues. We are intrinsically wealthy in Cleveland, Ohio. We have a built heritage that is beyond compare, despite efforts of the Jackson administration and the banksters to demolish it. Our basic infrastructure is pretty darned good, too. We have a natural heritage that includes fresh water, a temperate climate, varied terrain, lots of wind, and the vestiges of forests of trees. Let’s not buy into the idea that we’re pathetic or needy, because we’re not; we’ve got everything we need right here, right now.

This city is not so ugly it has to tie a porkchop around its neck to get the dogs to play with it. Welcome to Cleveland, Chris. Now either put up some capital, or go home.

Cleveland medical mart may have to fend off another competitor based in Nashville, Tennessee - Metro -

Monday, May 18, 2009

a privately owned convention center, of all things

I’ve just returned from a 4-day stay in Dayton, Ohio, at the Hamvention. As a side note and disclaimer, I am not a ham, but found the trip an interesting excursion in the field of American Studies.

Besides the crowd itself, another very interesting thing was that the huge convention center complex used by the Hamvention is privately held, owned by a family. They are making a go of it without the help of the imposition of an earmarked county sales tax or the self-proclaimed expertise of the Kennedy family. It makes me wonder why nobody in these parts has proposed that the medical community here take care of their own business and their own MedicalMart, with their own money.

Hara Arena Information
Home to the Dayton Hamvention since 1964, The Hara Complex is as unique as its history. In 1956, Wampler Ballarena (a dance hall) was built as the cornerstone of what is now a 6-building exhibition center. Originally, the location was a thriving, family-owned fruit orchard. Today it is a thriving, family-owned entertainment, conference and exhibition facility. Very few such complexes are privately owned, even fewer are family owned. Hara has survived and prospered by combining the professionalism of one of the areas largest exhibition centers with the care and personal concern of a family business. It is a unique combination that serves our clients and patrons well.

A MedicalMarijuanaMart concept ought to have them tripping all over themselves to be the first Pfizer of natural and organic products, Mother Nature’s little helpers, swashbuckling capitalist ganja buccaneers. / Media

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

central planning fails again, as advertising kiosks fail to deliver

Finally, Henry Gomez got the figures we’ve been asking to see for years now, and the verdict is in: We the people of Cleveland did in fact finance these “street furniture” atrocities, allowing the recovery of startup costs by Omni Media before there was any money at all paid to the city. Once again, our elected help, following the direction of the hired help at central planning, show themselves to be the chumps of private enterprise. The central planner, Bob Brown, here seems to be siding with Omni; it seems he’s quite often not aligned with the public interest.

It took Omni two years to build and install the first kiosks. The company's first full year of sales was not until 2002, said Sandra Gallucci, Omni's sales manager and head of development.

For the next three years, Gallucci said, Cleveland's cut of the proceeds was canceled out for three reasons: Uncollected debt; money deducted to design and produce maps; and revenues lost because of kiosks being displaced by construction.

In addition, Omni and the city amended the contract to allow for fewer kiosks.

Brown said the up-front costs of maps and signs alone accounted for about $175,000 -- more than the city was entitled to under terms of the royalty agreement.

Omni determines royalties based on the previous year's numbers. The city caught up in 2006, when the storefront program received $37,136. The amount jumped to $72,841 in 2007.

But the six-figure paydays once considered a starting point have yet to be achieved.

When we were collecting signatures for the Put It On the Ballot initiative, people coming up East Ninth Street kept asking us for directions to a good restaurant, even though they’d passed two or three of these behemoth kiosks before talking to us. These aluminum hulks are not only superfluous, but they’re also in disrepair and out of plumb. They add to the visual clutter and mar the streetscape.

These obstructions need to be removed and scrapped so they do no further harm. The Omni Media parasites have already recovered their costs. They’re not performing according to projections; they misrepresented in a major way. So, amend the contract again. Clean the streetscape. Take back the sidewalks. Recover from Omni when you backcharge them for sign removal and new concrete slabs.

Omni, you came in here under false pretenses, so now take your boxes, fold your little Cleveland office, and go home. You were carpetbaggers anyway. Who brought you all in here in the first place?

It’s time for major change, yet this little freshening would be salutary and good for morale.

Advertising kiosks fail to deliver projected revenue for city's coffers - Metro -

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Ferris’ New Website – for Apartments!

My cousin Rick sent this to me in a batch this afternoon, and I wanted to post it here for posterity, for when he's richer and more famous.

Indeed, it IS a jungle out there, and now you can rent through a local NEO broker.

Sent: Sunday, May 10, 2009 3:50 PM
Subject: Ferris' New Website – for Apartments!

Dear Friend,

I need your help! I have been working on a new internet startup with my business partner, Jon Pastor. The site is an apartment search engine (like Google) that scours the internet for every apartment listing in the U.S. (unlike Google, we specialize in apartment search only). We organize the results in a simple, powerful map/results page. We have ~1 million listings, which is 5x our closest competitor, and we just launched this week.

Please check it out at I would really appreciate your feedback and comments. In fact, if you're on Facebook, please become a fan of our Facebook page at and post a comment.

The map interface is particularly useful, try:

So if you, your kids, parents, friends or relatives are in the market for an apartment, please give it a try:

Thanks, I appreciate it, and please share your thoughts with me,

Rick Ferris

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Harlan Ellison -- Pay the Writer -- putting moochers on notice

As followup to Harlan's being Marcelled earlier in the matter of The Cleveland Arts Prize, here's Harlan's take on moochers, doing things for nothing, and getting things for nothing. I tend to agree--these secular nonprofit directors "wouldn't go for 5 seconds without being paid."

multiplying talents: Cleveland Heights pastor at Forest Hill Church takes cue from parable, gives congregants $50 each

Great story from our friend Mike O’Malley. Instructive, too.

It occurs to me now that we Roman Catholics are uniquely positioned to do the same, but on a larger scale. Instead of demolishing churches or shutting them down and having them reappear on the tax rolls, what if the diocese gave away a church to the congregation, to see what would come back? That strikes me as being the proper role of a conservator of the parishes’ aggregated assets, a trustee of the efforts of prior generations.

In the final analysis, it’s not about the money at all. The tail has been wagging the dog. It’s about people, and what our forbears put together for the support of a strong community then and now. The money was spent and the energy expended long ago to provide what we have now, and we must honor that, and conserve.

Again, we’re back to the old “Waste not, want not,” but it holds true.

Cleveland Heights pastor at Forest Hill Church takes cue from parable, gives congregants $50 each - Metro -

rude, crude, and nasty: secular nonprofit executive director struts her stuff

There’s a certain tacky, money-grubbing desperation pervasive in the secular nonprofit arena in Ohio, and Marcie Bergman’s conduct representing us as executive director of The Cleveland Arts Prize (CAP) points that up. The Prize has too distinguished a history and is too good a concept to have to endure this sort of hired representation; it’s time for a more gracious face for the organization.

It appears from a cursory examination of the CAP’s forms 990 over at Guidestar (register and sign in for yourself, membership is free) that they certainly could have afforded to provide native son and enfant terrible Harlan Ellison a plane ticket and lodging. It also appears that Marcelle Bergman’s compensation was equal to 1/10th of the endowment amount in 2007; hereafter to be known as Madame Shekelgruber, she had a part-time job of 20 hours a week and received $44,997 for that in 2007. In 2006 and 2005, the compensation for executive-director leadership was significantly less, but that actually misses the point: Paying anything at all for this type of representation is just too, too expensive.

Let’s see if Harlan showcases a new character based on his recent experience with Madame Shekelgruber. Go, Harlan; if anybody can do it, it’s you. And as I’ve been fond of saying lately, “Welcome to Cleveland; now go home.”

Harlan Ellison turns down Cleveland Arts Prize -

Thursday, May 07, 2009

sage accounting advice from Janis Joplin - GET IT WHILE YOU CAN

Based on advice from accounting professionals, and backed up by our old friend Janis, I applied today for Social Security retirement benefits. My 62nd birthday is three months from today, and that's the earliest they allow application for the benefit.

I am not retiring, though. I plan on continuing to work in my chosen profession for another 25 years. As the Tofflers have suggested in REVOLUTIONARY WEALTH, we are entering a new age in which all things monetary get re-valued.

book review: MEAN Little deaf Queer, A memoir by Terry Galloway

I saw this title just now over on LibraryThing as one of the review items available for May and was fascinated by the words as juxtaposed.

“You don´t have to be mean, little, deaf, or queer to take heart from this miraculously unsentimental, deliriously funny, refreshingly spite-free, joyously weirdo-embracing memoir. All you have to be is human. Like Augusten Burroughs, Frank McCourt, and Mary Karr, Terry Galloway has written a memoir that transcends its hilarious particularities to achieve the universality of true art.”

Sarah Bird, author of How Perfect is That and The Mommy Club

More praise

Running with Scissors meets The Liar's Club in this edgy and wickedly hilarious memoir about one irrepressible, mean, little, deaf queer

When Terry Galloway was born on Halloween, no one knew that an experimental antibiotic given to her mother had wreaked havoc on her fetal nervous system. After her family moved from Berlin Germany, to Austin, Texas, hers became a deafening, hallucinatory childhood where everything, including her own body, changed for the worse. But those unwelcome changes awoke in this particular child a dark, defiant humor that fueled her lifelong obsessions with language, duplicity, and performance.

As a ten-year-old self-proclaimed “child freak,” she acted out her fury at her boxy hearing aids and Coke-bottle glasses by faking her own drowning at a camp for crippled children. Ever since that first real-life performance, Galloway has used theater and performance, whether onstage or off, to defy and transcend her reality. With disarming candor, Terry writes about her mental breakdown, her queer identity, and living in a silent, quirky world populated by unforgettable characters. What could have been a bitter litany of complaint is instead an unexpectedly hilarious and affecting take on life.


Prologue: Nine

Part I: Drowning

Them and Me


Presto Change-o


The Performance of Drowning
Listen to it; MP3, 67 MB)

Lost Boy

Part II: Passing

Little-d Deaf

On Being Told No

Passing Strange

Drag Acts


Jobs for the Deaf

The Shallow End

Part III: Emerging


Who Died and What Killed Them

Why I Should Matter

Epilogue: A Happy Life . . .


MEAN Little deaf Queer: A memoir by Terry Galloway

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Shift Happens Narrated

My friend and classmate John Francis Moriarty III, an expatriate and educator in Thailand since college, still seems to care about basic disparities and the new, laggard culture of his birth country. The film clip mentions sending laptops to children in disadvantaged countries overseas, and I think, What about our own third-world country, our emerging nation/city-state, our sleepy little banana republic here in the center of Cuyahoga County?

FW: Budget Update from our friend Joe Calabrese over at RTA

We just got this email from Joe Calabrese. I didn’t know he knew where to reach me; will wonders never cease?

Anyway, Joe informs us there is a shortfall in sales tax receipts, just at the same time we’re looking to finance a MedMart on the back of the sales tax. I wonder if this will give any of the MedMart cheerleaders pause?

Here’s an idea: Since the Medical MarijuanaMart will be self-sustaining and a low-cost startup—heck, you can deal out of a suitcase just about anywhere—we can reallocate the sales-tax increase originally earmarked for the old, tired idea of the MedMart to public transit. Given this sudden influx of funds, RTA can be free for all, just like public education, and the economy will flourish, except for the autoworkers and the banks that lend money to buy overpriced gas hogs.

From: e-news []
Sent: Tuesday, May 05, 2009 3:22 PM
Subject: Budget Update

A message from Joe Calabrese, RTA CEO & General Manager

I want to update you on the current status of RTA's budget due to the current recession.

In light of a
projected $12-15 million shortfall in sales tax receipts, we are aggressively taking steps to help balance our budget to preserve needed transportation services.

The Ohio House of Representatives recently passed House Bill 1, which includes a badly needed increase for public transit.

We urge you to contact your State Senators and the Governor's Office, and urge them to retain this increase and provide whatever other assistance possible in order to minimize any service reductions.

We will keep you informed as the process continues. Thank you for your assistance.

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Monday, May 04, 2009

Arlo Guthrie - Coming Into Los Angeles - Woodstock 1969

I was thinking of the uses of BKL (Cleveland Burke Lakefront Airport) in the conduct of the new commerce at the new Cleveland MedicalMarijuanaMart, and it brought to mind the way trafficking used to be, when Arlo was a kid, flying into LAX.

unions tied to the unthinkable, and I do not lithp: N.Y. Times to File Notice It Will Close Boston Globe

Unthinkable, it is, and the unions are caught right in the middle. What’s valuable here? What’s the price to maintain the value?

The notion that Boston, home to some of the country's top universities, could lose its major daily would have been unthinkable before the recent nationwide plunge in advertising revenue. That dive has triggered a wave of newspaper bankruptcies and the closing of the Rocky Mountain News and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.

A Globe shutdown would leave the city with only one daily newspaper, the tabloid Boston Herald, which has just 10 news reporters and is battling its own financial difficulties.

"From the moment the Times Co. purchased The Globe in 1993, it has treated New England's largest newspaper like a cheap whore," former Globe columnist Eileen McNamara wrote last month in the Herald. "It pimped her out for profit during the booming 1990s and then pillaged her when times got tough. It closed her foreign bureaus and cheapened her coverage of everything from the fine arts to the hard sciences."

McNamara, who now teaches journalism at Brandeis University, ridiculed Sulzberger as "the boy genius whose crack management skills have helped drive the parent company of two of journalism's most respected newspapers to the brink of bankruptcy."

The Globe says the parent company is seeking $10 million in savings from the Newspaper Guild -- the paper's largest union -- as well as $5 million from the mailers, $2.5 million from the drivers and $2.2 million from the pressmen.

N.Y. Times to File Notice It Will Close Boston Globe -

Sunday, May 03, 2009

$7 billion annual revenue enhancement: MedicalMarijuanaMart

I was telling my friend Jim before church today about the idea of the MedicalMarijuanaMart, and he told me that Vancouver, British Columbia, had realized $7.8 billion from those sorts of sales last year. Checking quickly on line, I found this:

Until recently, I believed tales of drug busts and the legalization debate were news stories, and didn't belong in a business magazine. Then a few experts attached numbers to the illegal business. Forestry added $10 billion to B.C.'s GDP in 2005, the construction industry another $7.9 billion and according to police sources, the marijuana trade claims third spot, boasting annual sales of $7.5 billion. Big business indeed

BC Bud Marijuana from western Canada

And this:

Medical marijuana could ease economic pains

Ian Mulgrew, Vancouver Sun columnist
Published: Friday, November 14, 2008

DUNCAN - Eric Nash can barely contain his excitement waiting to hear from Health Canada whether he can start growing marijuana for 250 patients.

That would be just the start. There are tens of thousands more who are ailing across the country clamouring for his organic B.C. bud.

"There is a great opportunity here for the government to collect significant tax revenue currently being lost to the street market," Nash, one of the best-known legal cannabis producers, enthused.

"With the current global financial crisis, this court ruling is certainly a bright light in dark economic times. We're just waiting for clarification. I figure our production would increase significantly from several pounds to 150 pounds or more immediately."

Now that the Federal Court of Appeal has struck down the government's monopoly on supplying medical marijuana, Nash believes commercial agricultural production of pot is around the corner and the sky's the limit.

His local company, Island Harvest, has cleared the industrial security regulatory hurdles so the company meets the standards set by Ottawa to grow the much-demonized plant.

"Our vision is to have a sustainable commercial agriculture operation," he said. "There's no reason we can't achieve that. Look at the number of compassion clubs, look at the number of people using marijuana to relieve a headache or pre-menstrual cramps!"

More and more research is supporting previous anecdotal evidence that cannabis may have a wide range of therapeutic uses from the treatment of Alzheimer's, depression, glaucoma, epilepsy and cancer to HIV/AIDS, hepatitis and ADD/ADHD. Its most ardent promoters say cannabis may be an addition to the modern pharmacopeia that rivals Aspirin in the breadth of its applications.

It doesn't take a genius to realize the potential profits are staggering….

…Regardless, Nash said, based on the four-per-cent model, that puts sales at more than $400 million annually.

More optimistic projections say the medical market, including ancillary products such as vaporizers and paraphernalia, could be as high as $20 billion.

Add it up: The government sells maybe $1 million a year worth of the pot produced in a Manitoba mine, and compassion clubs across the country sell about $10 million worth of cannabis products.


I guess somebody already has thought up the idea of the MedicalMarijuanaMart, but Clevelanders should not give up so soon—they’re always looking for those copycat things, and this is way less tired an idea than casinos.

Since Cleveland has that thing called “home rule,” it would seem a logical next step to set up as a sovereign city-state and begin to deal. They could also work it so they wouldn’t have to share with those greedy devils Lee and Ted at the state, erstwhile brokers of all money flowing back from the Federal level. With home rule, we’d probably be something like an emerging third-world country or a banana republic, but, what the heck, we’ve been practicing being that way for years.

I guess the WeedWalk/PotParade on PublicSquare may have been one of those inflection points.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

weed, weed, weed on Public Square in Cleveland, Ohio

Today, around mid-day, I made a quick bus run to public square and happened to see this sad little parade following three police bikes. The people had three banners with all sorts of green colors on them and seemed to be chanting “Weed!”

I went in to the Terminal Tower to get some coffee at the Caribou and when I emerged, the parade had vaporized, almost as though they were swallowed up by the Cleveland Convention & Visitors Bureau at 100 Public Square.

Was there any coverage of this event anywhere? I’ve googled “Weed Walk” and “Pot Parade” and “On the Move with Marijuana” along with “Cleveland OH” and come up empty. Maybe they were here promoting the commissioners’ latest regional revitalization scheme, a MedicalMarijuanaMart. Far out. Outta state. Right arm.

Beats casinos. Probably easier to legalize and tax than prostitution. Go for it. Try something new for a change. Innovate.

the worm has turned: “The Democrats have no more excuses” | Salon

I enjoyed this take on the current state of affairs by David Sirota. Now, do you think they’ll have the moral courage to begin talking about restitution to individuals and restoration of communities before they talk about bailouts of huge entities, and being “too big to fail”?

May 1, 2009 | As counsel for the Warren Commission investigating the Kennedy assassination, Arlen Specter described a "magic bullet" that changed America. Four decades later as a U.S. senator, Specter is providing another history-altering magic bullet -- one Democrats will either fire off in a starting gun, or use in their suicide.

By leaving the Republican Party this week, the five-term Pennsylvania lawmaker eliminated the last Democratic rationale for inaction: the Senate filibuster. With Minnesota Democrat Al Franken expected to be seated soon, and now with Specter, Democrats will have the 60 Senate votes needed to overcome all parliamentary obstructions.

This legislative magic bullet will force Democrats to fulfill their policy promises and potentially commence an era of dominance, or they will fail and be annihilated at the polls.

No longer can they blame Republicans for stopping bills to reform healthcare, tax, defense and trade policy. In command of the White House, the autocratic House of Representatives, and soon a filibuster-proof Senate majority, Democrats will have total authority to do whatever they want, and no scapegoat to fault. That means, as ABC News' Rick Klein said, "This is Democrats' turn to govern, no excuses" -- and it means we're about to find out whether their pledges were genuine.

Ever since the 1994 Republican takeover of Congress, Democrats have guaranteed "real change" if we give them back control of government. They've made this pledge despite helping Republicans to deregulate the financial system and to plunge the country into the Iraq war. And at every turn, they've blamed the GOP, rather than themselves, for gridlock.

The Democrats have no more excuses | Salon

In another Salon piece, Glenn Greenwald recounts Dick Durbin’s candor a few days ago, about the bankers owning the US Congress. We haven’t heard about it or seen it anywhere else. Wonder why. Great piece, read it all.

Sen. Dick Durbin, on a local Chicago radio station this week, blurted out an obvious truth about Congress that, despite being blindingly obvious, is rarely spoken:  "And the banks -- hard to believe in a time when we're facing a banking crisis that many of the banks created -- are still the most powerful lobby on Capitol Hill. And they frankly own the place."  The blunt acknowledgment that the same banks that caused the financial crisis "own" the U.S. Congress -- according to one of that institution's most powerful members -- demonstrates just how extreme this institutional corruption is.

The ownership of the federal government by banks and other large corporations is effectuated in literally countless ways, none more effective than the endless and increasingly sleazy overlap between government and corporate officials.  Here is just one random item this week announcing a couple of standard personnel moves:

Former Barney Frank staffer now top Goldman Sachs lobbyist

food for thought: Bob Reid takes over from Frank Bova Wednesday

Do you think we’ll some day soon read a related story in which Bob Reid arrests Jimmy DiMora? What does the sheriff do, anyway?

Bob Reid is elected Cuyahoga County Sheriff - Metro -

good news: Bishop reverses St. Colman closing

Well, here’s some truly good news: Bishop Lennon has granted Saint Colman parish a 4-year reprieve. That means parishioners and other well-wishers have 4 years in which to learn and then to prove that tithing works wonders.

The problem with coming up Catholic in these parts is that we were all instructed, in the ‘50s and ‘60s, to give 1 hour’s wage, and that would be quite enough. These days, apparently that is no longer the case. For a normal workweek, a tithe would be 4 hours’ pay, before deductions.

In times when there were lots of practicing Catholics, households chock full of boomers thanks to the rhythm method, and a real need for Catholic schools, 1 hour’s wage worked wonders and the church networks grew huge. Smaller families, new spiritualities, competition from the government and secular nonprofits for the charitable dollar, spiking utility costs, church scandals, and fewer vocations have now worked to alter the scale of supporting the previous network of Roman Catholic churches and schools. More is now needed from fewer. It’s time to pick up and review the Bible; it’s time to emulate our Presbyterian relatives and begin to tithe. Cleveland, OH Bishop reverses St. Colman closing

Friday, May 01, 2009

H. L. Mencken forecast our land of heart’s desire

The quote below from H. L. Mencken, from Nelson Nash’s newsletter just out today,  may help explain the phenomenon of legislative bowdlerization of American English that Connie Schultz brought to the fore yesterday, with the start of the “retardation” dialogues.

If the legislative take-aways and prohibitions continue, then, when the emperor truly has no clothes, or is helplessly impaired, we won’t be able to describe the situation accurately without running the risk of being politically incorrect. I wonder if “moron” has been legislated away already?

As democracy is perfected, the office of president
represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of
the people. On some great and glorious day the plain
folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last
and the White House will be adorned by a downright
moron.” -H.L. Mencken (July 26, 1920)

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Connie Schultz may have a point: Purge Ohio law of a needlessly hurtful word

Connie may be right. I probably shouldn’t have referred to Frank Jackson, Jane Campbell, and Mike White as ‘tards a few posts ago. It was a thoughtless slur denigrating an entire class of retarded people, people who happen to be a certain way and have no control over that circumstance, and I apologize for it. Jackson et al. play country-bumpkin dumb and act stupid, but we suspect they can also act alternatively. We hope.

As Connie points out, our language is losing a lot of its color, strength, and power to the well-intentioned bowdlerizations of public servants who would aspire to be custodians of political correctness, and emasculators of public discourse:

"There was a time when the word 'retarded' was considered acceptable," Stewart [Republican State Sen. Jimmy Stewart, of Athens] said. "I think we all recognize that language changes over time. Words that didn't used to be seen as offensive now are. It was only recently that 'imbecile,' 'drunkard' and 'lunatic' were taken out of language in the Ohio code. . . . It's time to eliminate 'retardation,' too. It won't change everybody's mind, and it won't stop everyone from using the word in a derogatory way, but it's a start."

It's a good start, and way overdue. And what took us so long? I'd be quicker to lunge at the legislature if I weren't so embarrassed that it took me longer than it should have to recognize the injustice. As my 21-year-old daughter pointed out to me this week, calling someone a "reeee-tard" is still common among her peers, and always intended to deride.

In addition to the problem of the neutering of the language by proscription, we have coming at it from the other side the problem of word-hijacking—“gay” for instance as a reference to things homosexual, and “urban” as a near-synonym for the racial “black” (which used to be the polite and respectful “Negro”), adding nuances where they didn’t exist before, eclipsing original meanings. They’ve even hijacked the rainbow and made it so a man can’t wear a pink shirt without drawing some sort of commentary.

You just have to wonder what’s going to be left to language, colors, and symbols after a while, with all the expurgation and confiscation. Perhaps we can go an underground loaded-word-retention movement, or begin to speak in code, or in Latin: Semper ubi sub ubi. Ah, there’s a start!

What words would you like to keep? What words would you like to take back? What associations would you like to put to sleep?

Is there a basic imbalance in a culture where strong, loaded words get put away, yet common words are assigned loads, codes, and nuances they never had before?

Purge Ohio law of a needlessly hurtful word -- Connie Schultz - Connie Schultz, Plain Dealer Columnist -

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

ideas whose time has come: “Secession Is in Our Future” - Clifford F. Thies - Mises Institute

A few weeks ago, I was talking about separating Brooklyn Centre from the City of Cleveland, and having Ohio City and a few other viable entities do the same. Now, here’s a guy entertaining a similar idea, but relative to the states and the federal government.

Can states secede? There are three levels on which this question can be answered:

  1. the inalienable right of secession,
  2. the international law of secession, and
  3. the US law of secession.

    All three say yes.

Things are heating up, at least in the world of ideas.

Secession Is in Our Future - Clifford F. Thies - Mises Institute

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Dan Gilbert of the Cavs and other Ohio casino backers hire troubled California firm Arno Political Consultants

We’ve said “no!” to these clowns on numerous occasions, yet here they come again, using the same dishonest signature-collection firm as before. Anybody who has listened to the signature-gatherers misrepresentations with regard to gambling issues knows that there should be a law requiring them to tell the truth, but in this political climate, there are few standards.

It’s time to view Dan Gilbert in a different light, entirely. This is not a good-neighbor gesture, to attempt to inflict this fraudulent campaign on the community once again. We really don’t need bread and circuses, we really don’t need the underground economies that casinos bring with them, and we really don’t need any more low-paying no-skills-required part-time jobs. We also don’t need any more loans. Think about it.

The Ohio casino plan is being backed by Cleveland Cavaliers majority owner Dan Gilbert and Penn National Gaming, a casino operating company based in Pennsylvania.

The plan would require a rewrite of Ohio's constitution to allow casinos in Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati and Toledo, if approved by voters. But to get on the ballot, the casino committee first must collect 402,275 signatures of valid Ohio voters by the end of June.

Ohio casino backers hire troubled California firm Arno Political Consultants - Metro -

Monday, April 27, 2009

Conde Bust: Why Portfolio folded. - By Daniel Gross - Slate Magazine

Bummer. Read all about it at the link below. Portfolio was probably my favorite monthly magazine, followed closely by WORTH, which also seems to have fallen strangely silent lately.

I wonder how they plan to fulfill the remainder of the subscription?

Why Portfolio folded. - By Daniel Gross - Slate Magazine

Sunday, April 26, 2009

my first craigslist posting: Art Deco Baroque Rococo 3-piece Bedroom Set - $300 (Cleveland, Ohio, in Brooklyn Centre)

What more can I say than, tadaaaaa! I had trouble with the size of the photo files until I got hold of a freeware utility from Fookes Software called EZ Thumbnails, and then everything just seemed to fall into place.

Date: 2009-04-26, 4:46PM EDT

This is sort of the FlubADub of bedroom furniture; there's some design element here for everybody, so long as you're into exuberance. We think it's from the 1920s or 1930s. It's definitely old; it was originally designed for those metal springs. It's very well built. It is massive. It is huge. It is heavy. It casts its own unique spell. It holds a lot. Our daughter the artist was entranced by it a few years ago on a trip to a furniture shop in Wooster. She has since moved to Savannah, but had not sent for the furniture to accompany her, and now tells us it won't. It's not our style. We're in downsize mode; we'd like rush mats, perhaps on a tasteful, minimalist platform.

Cash, please. Take it away. All three pieces must move out of here together. We're near the zoo, and all the major freeways, I-71, I-90, I-480, and so forth. Live long and prosper. Sleep well, surrounded by quality construction. Wake up in another era.

If these thumbnail photos don't do the three pieces justice, I can send you larger files with better resolution by email.

  • Location: Cleveland, Ohio, in Brooklyn Centre
  • it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests

image 1141281045-0
image 1141281045-1

image 1141281045-2

PostingID: 1141281045; posting can be seen at


Saturday, April 25, 2009

here’s an idea whose time has come

This is the 12th ethics complaint filed against Sarah Palin, and I think it should have wide application, cutting across all party lines and governmental entities. These political types are servants to the public and must be held to basic standards relative to our employment of them; if we feel discomfort or unease, they should feel more, sooner. They are not leaders, they are not celebrities, they are not players, they are not developers; they are help, and should be paid and treated accordingly. We need them less and less. They are becoming impediments to progress and wasters of our common, pooled assets.

The complaint will be filed this afternoon asserting that Palin's involvement with SarahPAC constitutes "outside employment" and "misuse of official position."

Anchorage resident Sondra Tompkins, child disability advocate and mother of a special needs child, is filing the complaint after observing Governor Palin repeatedly display "a pattern of unethical behavior." Sondra believes that the tipping point for her was Sarah Palin's most recent abdication of her role as Governor and apparent conflict-of-interest when she spoke at two outside events in Indiana rather than work with the Alaska Legislature during the most critical time, the end of the session.

The complaint alleges:

a) Governor Palin has entered into a contract outside of her official duties with the donors, employees, partners and any or all other participants involved in SarahPAC.

b) The recent partisan trip to Indiana by the Governor was purely to benefit personal interests, had no benefit for the State of Alaska and was in direct conflict with her official duties.

c) The Governor left the State to participate in these events during the most critical end-of-session Legislative activities, at a time where the legislators themselves are not permitted to leave

AKMuckraker: Palin's Dirty Dozen -- New Ethics Complaint Filed

Marc Canter: How to build the Open Mesh | Book Preview of a treatise on what it's gonna take for us all to make a living off the crumbs left behind by the behemoths

Gloria and I spent some time with Marc Canter last night over at Paul’s place on Edgecliff, and he has  many, many ideas that augment and add tons of value to the dialogues we’ve been having around here these past 5 years. You can buy this book here in softcover or in hardcover with dust jacket or imagewrap, or, as George Nemeth has pointed out, you can download components.

Explore. Expand. Exhale. It’s all gonna be all right. Marc works in right fine with all the rest of what’s happening around here, in a context of infinite abundance.

How to build the Open Mesh | Book Preview

Friday, April 24, 2009

swashbuckling venture capitalists—veritable corsairs--or welfare queens?

You be the judge. 

JumpStart receives 52 percent of its funding from federal and state government, including a significant portion from Third Frontier, a statewide program aimed at creating industries and jobs in high-tech areas.

See related article, Average pay in Cleveland area in 2007 was 3.3 percent below U.S. average,  and its telling *.pdf,.

From the *.pdf,  note that 16.4% above in 1969 and 3.3% below in 2007 is a spread, a fall, of 19.7%; do you think things have improved, relatively, since 2007? And look at the state overall…

JumpStart Inc. invested 29 percent more in early-stage companies last year -

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

new Cleveland blog: Helen Miller's Weight Loss Diary, or, “Here's How I Lost 47 lbs of Body Fat in Just 2 Months With These 2 FREE* Diet Products I Saw on T.V.”

I really can’t tell you how I stumbled across this new offering from Cleveland, but here it is, for your delectation, a new blog on the NEO scene as of April 8th:

Dear fellow weight-struggler,

   Hi, I am Helen, and I'm from Cleveland, Ohio. I know there are many diet ads around that tell you their product really works. I just thought I would share my story with you in the hopes of inspiring you with a real example, and not just the lies that companies use. This is the true story of how I went from depressed and overweight to having an amazing body with the help of a few free weight loss products*.

read more at Helen Miller's Weight Loss Diary

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Judge Peter Corrigan tackles the task of riding herd on the ‘tards

It seems Judge Corrigan finds the current administration as big an embarrassment as the rest of us do, and he can do something about it before election time rolls around. The $900,750 fine should be borne by those who incurred it, our elected and hired help, and not the general fund. We have to start recovering money from them on a personal basis, and not funding their failed attempts at gangsterism out of dollars that should be benefiting all of us.

Penalties and fines need to be specifically and particularly attached to the miscreants, the mayors and their staffs. We must strip away the protections that hitherto have enabled their violating the law with impunity. There must be a personally assessed price for the practices of “cronyism and corruption.”

Judge, City Hall clash over civil service ruling - Metro -

Monday, April 13, 2009

breaking chains: Kill Your Cable TV Bill Dead -- InformationWeek

Years ago, cable television was a godsend. In the mid-70s in Atlanta, I think I paid around $6 a month for no-commercial television and movies with great reception and no rabbit ears.

Today, cable has become what it replaced, commercial-ridden television, and it costs a hefty subscription rate, to boot.

In the INFORMATION WEEK article here are some workarounds you can start using now. Personally, we have a Netflix subscription, cable internet from Time Warner, and over-the-air HDTV. We haven’t had cable for nearly 20 years, since we discovered our then-4-year-old had become exceedingly fond of MTV and also had already memorized a good number of Beavis and Butthead riffs.

Kill Your Cable TV Bill Dead -- Video -- InformationWeek

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Steven D. Knope, M.D.: concierge medicine, retainer medicine, direct medicine and boutique medicine

Here’s an interesting fee-based advisory business model that makes a lot of sense to me. It allows the doctor to function as a true professional and to act as an advocate for his clients in a market that has become hopelessly compromised and complicated. Also, Dr. Knope uses blogs and podcasts to get the message out.

I was referred here by a NYTimes article about how doctors are opting out of Medicare.

Concierge medicine, retainer medicine, direct medicine and boutique medicine are all terms used to describe a new form of medical service in which patients contract directly with their doctor for medical services. By removing the third-party payer, your physician acts as your advocate, with no interference or conflict of interest from outside parties.

Internist Steven D. Knope, M.D., a pioneer in creating patient-centered care for optimal health and wellness, is the first physician to offer this comprehensive, personal approach in Tucson.

For one annual fee, Dr. Knope provides:

Exercise and fitness consultation, including a lactate stress test, nutritional analysis and an exercise prescription tailored to your specific health and fitness goals.

24/7 telephone access via cell phone or beeper wherever you are.

Same-day service for any medical problem that requires evaluation by Dr. Knope.

Office visits that are anything but routine. You are scheduled for 20- to 30-minute sessions for routine visits, depending on your needs.

Dr. Knope personally oversees hospital admissions and care. There will be no “hospitalist” or unfamiliar physician directing your care in a crisis.

Dr. Knope supervises and monitors all ER visits.

All blood work is done in our office. You won't be referred to busy labs for blood work.

Prompt telephone feedback with lab and radiology test results.

Prompt referrals to a select group of Tucson's best specialists. When time is important, Dr. Knope will intervene on your behalf so you can see a specialist as soon as possible.

An annual physical exam, including a stress test and a disease prevention assessment, along with a comprehensive cancer screening.

Supervision by a personal trainer at your gym or in your home. Two sessions with a certified exercise physiologist to ensure you are following Dr. Knope’s exercise prescription properly.

Steven D. Knope, M.D.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

good article on Jill Miller Zimon also mentions MeetTheBloggers

From Women’s eNews, here’s an article featuring our friend Jill Miller Zimon in “Journalist of the Month” and announcing her entry into local Pepper Pike politics. Gloria just told me Jill is filing her petitions at the Board of Elections right now, which is just before lunch time. In the article, Jill gleans many good comments, among them the following:

On Feb. 23, the day before Limbaugh's women's summit, a Public Polling Study showed Limbaugh--known in some circles for saying "feminism was established to allow unattractive women easier access to the mainstream"--has a major gender gap on his hands. In the poll 56 percent of men surveyed expressed a favorable opinion of Limbaugh, while 37 percent of women.

On the day of the summit, Miller Zimon ran excerpts of the Limbaugh program along with her comments, which were sent around the Internet by e-mail and picked up by several other blogs, including, The Moderate Voice, and The Huffington Post.

Miller Zimon's citizen journalism earns the respect of Jay Rosen, a New York University journalism professor, and author of the influential media blog PressThink. "She has her feminist group base, and a local political base, and some new media people and Cleveland bloggers," says Rosen. "I like the way she knits together the local and the national, the political and the personal, without getting sentimental."

In writing for this diverse community, Miller Zimon is succeeding at blogging in the deepest sense, says Rosen. "The greatest characteristic of blogging is that personal expression can have the publishing might of big companies. That's the big promise of it and that's why she's successful."

There’s also mention of the influence of the MeetTheBloggers experience:

Since 2005, Miller Zimon's concern about transparency of local politics, and the power of blogging, led her to attend and blog about almost 40 local "Meet the Blogger" forums in which notable Ohio politicians and other civic leaders faced bloggers and their questions in person.

That helped spur her decision to run for public office.

"Meet the Bloggers helped expose me to just how normal people pursue politics, and why," says Miller Zimon. "Complaining and writing about it can only get you so far . . . "

Citizen Blogging Boosts Zimon into Local Politics

Saturday, March 14, 2009

more contact info on Gloria

Dear Blogger Pals,

As of 3 PM yesterday, Friday, Gloria is a resident on the same floor as she was in November and December, the third floor in the MetroHealth Towers, room 334-1, telephone 216-957-7188.

If there are any changes to location or phone number, I'll post it to her blog,

We expect her stay will continue 4 or 5 days past the March 19th operation.

Thanks again for your prayers, companionship, and support, all those things that are assisting her miraculous return to good health.

Tim Ferris
216-905-1049 cell

Friday, March 13, 2009

Gloria’s location and telephone at MetroHealth

For our family and friends, here's the update I put up at Gloria's blog just now.

This is Tim, posting to Gloria’s blog. Her location at Metro is the same as it was last November, the 3rd floor in the Towers, to the left as you get off the elevator. The room number is 334-1, and the telephone is 216-957-7188. Visiting hours go from early until 8:30 PM, officially, and the phone lines are open from 8 AM through 9 PM, I believe.

Gloria Ferris » Blog Archive » Gloria’s location and telephone at MetroHealth

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Friday events for Gloria

Here's a note I've been emailing around this evening, trying to keep everyone in the loop:

Dear Friends--

Tomorrow, Friday, Gloria is being readmitted to MetroHealth Medical Center to adjust her medication intake for an operation she will have early next Thursday, March 19th.

After the operation on the 19th, we have no idea how long she will be kept in the hospital, but anticipate it will be another 4-5 days.

I'll get the room phone number out to you tomorrow or Saturday. I'll also post it to her blog,, so there is a point to which we can all refer back for details and at which we can converse.

And, for our blogger friends, no, I don't at this point plan to live-blog the operation. My laptop's replacement fan and heat sink have not arrived yet from China.

Tim Ferris
216-905-1049 cell

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

City of Cleveland, Ohio: CHARTER AMENDMENTS ADOPTED 11-4-08

Way down the page, in section 25, you will find these parameters:

If the City’s population is: The City shall be divided into the following number of wards:

More than 575,000 ………………………………………………. 25
575,000 or less but more than 525,000………………….. 23
525,000 or less but more than 475,000………………….. 21
475,000 or less but more than 425,000………………….. 19
425,000 or less but more than 375,000………………….. 17
375,000 or less but more than 325,000………………….. 15
325,000 or less but more than 275,000………………….. 13
275,000 or less ……………………………………….…………… 11

The wards so formed shall be as nearly equal in population as may be fair and equitable, composed of contiguous and compact territory, and bounded by natural boundaries or street lines. When any territory is annexed to the City the Council shall by ordinances declare it a part of the adjacent ward or wards.

It's interesting to note here that they provide for annexation, but fail to talk about secession, or de- or dis-annexation.

It is my belief that we should now be talking about getting to a level of 17 wards immediately, if we're so hot to trot on getting busy and getting done before the census.

How many times are we going to re-tool all the systems and paperwork at the city and at the county level, to compensate for serial changes over a period of 2 or 3 years. The Honorable (this always cracks me up, how they've decked each other out with titles) Kevin Kelley, at the public review session last Wednesday at the Jones Home (little did we know we were all orphaned at that time, pending new adoption) whipped some Latin phraseology on us, saying the cost each time and every time would be de minimis.

We need to quantify de minimis and, if it's so negligible an expense, let the councilpeople pick up the tab out of their expense accounts, or personal pocket change.

CHARTER_AMENDMENTS_ADOPTED_11-4-08"Taking One for the Team: Could Attrition Be the Answer To Cleveland City Council Reduction?"

My good friend and helpmate Madame Gloria has had an innovative and noble idea about letting attrition work to prune the ward structure here, or anywhere for that matter, anywhere that needs to become more efficient in its governmental structures to accommodate declining population and efficiencies and economies available due to technology and regional networking arrangements. "Taking one for the team" is something we should expect regularly from those in public service.

Here are a few things to consider, for the future, assuming increasing density as suburban living becomes untenable and my generation, The Boomers, gets sensible and downsizes into a very affordable pied a terre close to town and to the airports, Hopkins and Burke:

22,500 people X 19 wards = 427,500

25,000 people X 17 wards = 425,000

27,500 people X 15 wards = 412,500

The present situation, in which the population figures are inflated to 427,500 and completely unverified and unfounded, shows we should be at 17 wards right now, according to the dictates of the legislation, if the true number of people actually residing in Cleveland is in the 360,000 to 380,000 range today, as political insiders believe is the case.

22,500 people X 19 wards = 427,500

22,500 people X 17 wards = 382,500

22,500 people X 15 wards = 337,500

Here are the councilpeople by seniority, taking 21 wards down to 15 by attrition of senior members of council:

  1. Jay Westbrook, 1980
  2. Ken Johnson, 1980
  3. Mike Polensek, 1982
  4. Roosevelt Coates, 1987
  5. Martin Sweeney, 1992?
  6. Joe Cimperman, 1997

I'd say Madame give us something to think about, as we verify the population figures. If we're going to do it at all, let's get a big cut out of the way now, using the real numbers. Otherwise, wait to take any action at all until after the census is official. We can't afford to be imprecise any longer. Council must be accountable now, in what they say and what they use to calculate our present and future service.

Gloria Ferris » Blog Archive » Taking One for the Team: Could Attrition Be the Answer To Cleveland City Council Reduction?

Kathy Miracle: attachment from Akers email, posted below, detailing April 2nd event




On April 2nd from 8:00 to 11:30 a.m., four local networking and “connecting” experts will share their job search secrets at a workshop with strategies, tools and tactics to help any job searcher find their next position. Thanks to our sponsor, MSA Companies, Serving the Medical, Manufacturing and IT Industries (

Today’s reality is that most jobs are found through networking and connecting (70% according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics) . . . not online. The other reality is that job seekers are facing growing competition . . . northeast Ohio employers have too many resumes and have the luxury of looking for the “perfect fit” to help their business grow. This workshop will provide you with practical and easy to implement ideas to improve your job search efforts and your results. To register for this unique job search workshop, visit

Attendees will:

  • Learn how to build relationships that will drive introductions and job opportunities
  • Discover tactics to improve the quantity and quality of your referrals and job opportunities
  • Get access to strategies to help you sell yourself as a “high value ROI” for local employers
  • Learn job networking tactics that will increase your referrals by 400-500% or more
  • Be better prepared for the job opportunities you pursue

Your Experts – David Akers, Kristopher McCrone, Katherine Miracle and Jeff Nischwitz:

  • Local entrepreneurs
  • Professional and experienced networkers
  • Job search and interviewing expert
  • Marketing and personal branding expert
  • Proven northeast Ohio connectors that regularly invest their time connecting people and job opportunities

Ø David Akers – President of The Collaborent Group, “master facilitator” and recognized connector

Ø Kristopher McCrone – Owner of Alternative Energy Consultants, "relationship builder" and a leader in the talent management industry

Ø Katherine Miracle – Owner and Founder of Miracle Resources and marketing and personal branding expert

Ø Jeff Nischwitz – Founder and Chief Question Officer of Think Again Coaching, “master connector” and the “human Linkedin” (

If you’re ready to jump start your job search . . . and accelerate your results, visit to register!

Event Details

  • Date and Time – Thursday, April 2, 2009, from 8:00 – 11:30 a.m. (registration at 7:30 a.m.)
  • Location – Lockkeepers Restaurant, 800 Rockside Road, Independence, Ohio (216-524-9404) (complimentary valet parking and continental breakfast included)
  • Workshop Investment - $64.95 ($49.95 if you register on or before March 25th)

Northeast Ohio employers are hiring, but they’re looking for the right people and being the “right” person means being the best at networking, connecting, differentiating, and interviewing. This workshop will provide attendees with the tools they need to be the best . . . and ultimately the right . . . person for northeast Ohio employers!

Don’t miss this unique opportunity to

jump start your job search and accelerate your career path!

For more information, contact:

Katherine Miracle

Miracle Resources

(330) 777-2003 (Ext. 100)

The workshop is sponsored by


Serving the Medical, Manufacturing and IT Industries

What they’re saying about the experts:

"David’s ideas were refreshing, and very creative. I especially enjoyed his wittiness, jokes, knowledge, and charisma. David is really knowledgeable and has a unique approach to helping others think outside the box." Kenya Salters-Gordon, Entrepreneur

“Kris is a go getter. He has a knack for creating activity and generating ‘business’ from the start. He is very driven to be the best at whatever he attempts to tackle. I would definitely want his tenacious work ethic directed toward filling my openings.” Senior Executive Recruiter, Rosetta (formerly Brulant)

"When Katherine spoke at our company she gave us the tools and inspiration to increase our revenue.” Lynne Giacobbe, Executive Director, Kendal at Home

“Jeff Nischwitz is the human ‘LinkedIn.’ Not only does he know everyone but knows how to connect them perfectly. Jeff, with his legal, entrepreneurial, and corporate experience, cuts a wide wake and produces results, independently, through others, and for others. His new business is already making a mark and adding to his track record of helping individuals, groups, and corporations connect and profit. Keep up on what Jeff is doing and who he is helping and it might be you!” Andy Birol, Birol Growth Consulting, Author, growth coach and speaker

Workshop targeted to individuals in career transition -

Here's an email I got yesterday from our Table VII/Founders' Café friend David Akers, who now happens to be collaborating with one of our friends from the Women's Enterprise Network, Kathy Miracle. I'll post the attachment, the Seminar Flyer, separately.

Greetings and salutations,

Over the past 12 months or so, I have received resumes forwarded by many of you of friends, colleagues, and new acquaintances that are networking as part of a job search. It is my practice, as Dave Janus well remembers, to meet someone new each week and “Pay it Forward” to the extent that I can help that person in their respective endeavors. So the forwarded resumes, the volume of which at times is overwhelming, are welcomed nonetheless as a way for me to meet one of my civic and professional commitments.

Along the way, in dozens of meetings, I began noticing that I was doing far less connecting of people and much more coaching. The people with whom I met needed a lot of help in being more effective in networking, in making it easy for others to help them, and in learning how to follow up in a meaningful way. I started having the meetings in my office, with access to a whiteboard, rather than at the nearest coffee shop. And I began drawing the same four drawings, over and over again.

The response from job-seekers was overwhelming – thank you for showing me such simple tools to accelerate my networking and my job search; I never thought about doing those things; it’s so easy to make it easy for people to help me; I wish I’d known these tools years ago, etc., etc.

Then Kristopher McCrone (who has coached literally thousands of people through interviewing effectively) approached Katherine Miracle (who works with individuals to help them package a prospective hire’s Return on Investment for an employer), Jeff Nischwitz (who is one of the most effective networkers around), and me about putting together a short seminar to help people seeking jobs in today’s tough economic environment. Each of us brings specific tools and practices to the table, and each of us has a commitment to helping job seekers be more effective and succeed.

We are holding our first workshop on April 2, 2009, at Lockkeepers in Independence. Registration begins at 7:30 AM and the event runs from 8 AM to 11:30 AM. I’ve attached a flyer that provides an overview of the event itself and registration details. You can also go to for more information.

My guess is that each of you, like me, is besieged with resumes right now from friends and colleagues and others, all seeking your assistance. Please send them a copy of this email and encourage them to leverage what they will learn in this workshop to take control of their career search. They can’t know what they don’t know about seeking a job until they attend this session.

Thank you for your consideration.

David J. Akers
President, Celeritas Limited
5422 East 96th Street, Suite 150
Cleveland, OH 44125
p 216.839.1500 c 216.280.5801
f 216.503.4247 e

Monday, March 09, 2009

Henry Gomez: Ward 15 residents angry about City Council redistricting have many questions, few answers - Inside Cleveland City Hall

Sometimes, I wonder if all this furor, this hubbub about redrawing the ward lines, is worth the attention it gets. Regardless of where we draw the lines, we get the same insipid governance from the mayor and a challenged, albeit smaller, city council; the subset of problems remains the same; the scenery really doesn't change that much at all; the service doesn't get much worse, because it can't, in this Midwestern equivalent of a third-world country, our beloved banana republic with a side of pierogis. Henry here recounts how more of the chickens are coming home to roost as Brian Cummins, last year's avid supporter of Council reduction, gets himself reduced into oblivion, and Callahan reminds us all of the way things were, from his unique inside perspective.

. . . And we still don't know what will happen on the East Side, where another council member is expected to lose most of his political base and be pitted against a colleague.

Despite all of this instant drama, local blogger Bill Callahan reminds everyone that this had to have been expected - most of all, perhaps, by Cummins. Cummins, as I should have noted in this weekend's stories, advocated an even deeper council downsizing. He felt the cuts favored by Sweeney and suburban businessmen were not enough at a time when Cleveland was bleeding population.

Callahan had a front-row seat to Cummins' proposal. He was a member of the Charter Review Commission that studied various downsizing plans and ultimately backed the one pushed by Sweeney - but not until 2013, when hard Census numbers would be available.

The ballot initiative ultimately passed by council called for the redistricting to take effect this year. And city voters approved the plan last November by a wide margin.

Nowhere in the charter amendment did it say that existing neighborhood boundaries had to be protected. It didn't even say the council would try to make such accommodations.

Now, people are angry because they see the effects of this amendment coming to life. To those in Brooklyn Centre, take a look at Ohio City. Since the last redistricting earlier this decade, Ohio City has been shared by three council members. . .

Ward 15 residents angry about City Council redistricting have many questions, few answers - Inside Cleveland City Hall -