Showing posts from August, 2016

The Enigma of Local 98

As many people know, Philadelphia has one of the highest rates of poverty of a major city in the country.  Many low income people struggle to just put food on the table.  I have been on the side of the aisle in which I am wondering where resources are coming from in order to feed my family.  It is why I often wonder at the power of some of our local labor unions.  One in particular is Local 98 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Unions.  The length and breadth of their financial largesse is astounding.

I first became aware of the power of this union when I was working in the housing arena.  Davis Bacon regulations were intended to have prevailing wages be paid by developers/contractors on publicly funded projects.  Being union was not a requirement if a contractor could pay the wage.  Laborers would get paid approximately $19.00 an hour plus benefits.  On the high end of the scale, Plumbers would get paid approximately $39.00 plus benefits.  The benefits are the key to the…

National Association of Black Storytellers in Philly: Let's Support Them

Philadelphia has been the home of a number of conventions this year.  The most famous has been the Democratic National Convention.  The Democrat's nominated the first woman ever to lead the party into the general election in November.  The African Methodist Episcopal General Conference was held in Philadelphia in July also.  This was the 50th Session held since the Church was incorporated in 1816 when Richard Allen was elected and consecrated as Bishop.  The Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts was held here in April.  It featured over 60 performances and a wide variety of mediums on which art was expressed.

We are a destination city in many ways.  It came as no surprise then when I found out that the National Association of Black Storytellers was going to convene here in November.  One of my childhood friends is the local Director at the festival.  I received an e-mail from one branch of this group called Keepers of the Culture.  Even though we are a multi-cultural s…

Seth Williams Should be Ashamed of Himself!!

We were barely able to get  through a week when the Attorney General for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania was convicted of leaking secret grand jury information and lying about it.  Kathleen Kane had said that she was going to vigorously fight the supposedly frivolous charges against her.  After the prosecution presented their case, her defense team did not call a single witness.  She did not even take the stand in her own defense.  Jerry Sandusky, the convicted pedophile, who cost Penn State milllions of dollars for his nefarious actions, now wants to testify during his appeal.  Chaka Fattah did not testify on his own behalf before he was convicted on all charges against him.  Do you notice a pattern here?

Seth Williams was the first African American to win the position of District Attorney of the city of Philadelphia.  It was a momentous occasion as he represented the hopes and dreams of individuals who felt that people of color did not get the justice that was deserved at the hand…

Continued Gun Violence over the Johnny Doc Story!!

There was a major story that occurred in Philly on Friday.  The FBI raided the home and businesses of John Dougherty and Local 98.  Johnny Doc is a political powerhouse and kingmaker in Philly.  It was recounted that his annual salary is almost $265K.  He also runs the powerful AFL-CIO in the region.  Some of his successes include getting Kevin Dougherty elected to the State Supreme Court.  Bobby Henon is also the majority leader in City Council.  He still earns $70K for some type of services provided to the union.  Most officials in Local 98 also earn at least $145K.  Don't cry for Johnny Doc.

Revisiting POWER: What a Journey

I thought that Season 3 of Power started off kind of slow.  I did not realize all of the plot lines that have affected the present story.  Last week I went on a Power marathon to catch up with the story and understand the current impact of the characters and their past.  There are two things that strike me as major paths.  First, James St. Patrick, aka Ghost, is a stone cold killer.  The suits and the desire to get out of the drug business are real.  When it comes down to it, he murdered all of the people in his syndicate except Ruiz and Kanan.  Second, Kanan is the scariest character that I have seen in a series in awhile.  He killed Q-Dubs without blinking.  He murdered his son when it became apparent that he wasn't a cold blooded killer.

Shawn was the driver for Ghost.  He was a nice young man who had played basketball at St. John's before suffering a knee injury.  He wasn't built for the gangster life.  He fell for Tasha over the course of seasons one and two.  She di…