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Comment Archives: Last 30 Days

Re: “The PIT Wants to Fill the Disgraced DSI Comedy Theater's Void. But Will It Just Replicate the Same Toxic Culture?

The PIT is indeed suffering from a toxic atmosphere, but not the kind described in the article by Katie Fernelius in Indyweek On November 29th. The PIT is suffering from the toxicity of a witch hunt, in which mud-slingers are given free reign and not held to any standards of rational thinking. Just as Stalins atrocities and abuses of power and didnt justify McCarthyism, Harvey Weinsteins horrible abuses dont justify the pillorying of Ali Farahnakian. For some reason, he wont defend himself against these bullies maybe because they remind him too much of the mob-mentality bullies he had to deal with growing up as a first-generation Iranian in a small Southern town during the Iran-Hostage Crisis (the hardship during which his sense of humor was originally forged). But Id like to address the matter on his behalf.

In 2010, Ali made a joke during an improv class : Sometimes when my wife and I have sex, she seems so reluctant that I feel kind of rapey (Thats right, he employed the very phrase that his accuser has now co-opted for her jokey description of the PIT)
In other words, he did his job. I dont know if such a joke would be appropriate in other work environments, but at an improv school, if you cant make a joke without being compared six years later to a man like the previous owner of DSI (who has been accused of actual sexual abuse), that would constitute a toxic environment a censorious environment in which comedy cant possibly flourish.

Regarding the PIT bartenders complaint that a manager tried to kiss her (and immediately stopped trying to kiss her as soon as it was clear she wasnt interested): when Ali found out about this, he did the responsible thing he asked her to tell him who the perpetrator was. Without being specific as to whom she was accusing, all the men at the theater were living under the cloud of her vague accusation. Her complaint that she felt uncomfortable during this meeting at which Ali and the other administrators were asking her to name names speaks to a potentially concerning backlash in the new, post-Weinstein era: that a new supremacy of victimhood will erase any chance of due process or reasonable conversation, and whoever complains the loudest must be right. The victims of such irresponsible mud-slinging are not just the unfairly accused, like Ali, but also the people who have suffered actual abuse at the hands of people like Harvey Weinstein or DSIs owner.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by fritzbw on 12/14/2017 at 4:12 PM

Re: “The PIT Wants to Fill the Disgraced DSI Comedy Theater's Void. But Will It Just Replicate the Same Toxic Culture?

The PIT is indeed suffering from a toxic atmosphere, but not the kind described in the article by Katie Fernelius in Indyweek On November 29th. The PIT is suffering from the toxicity of a witch hunt, in which mud-slingers are given free reign and not held to any standards of rational thinking. Just as Stalins atrocities and abuses of power didnt justify McCarthyism, Harvey Weinsteins horrible abuses dont justify the pillorying of Ali Farahnakian. For some reason, he wont defend himself against these bullies (maybe because they remind him too much of the mob-mentality bullies he had to deal with growing up as an Iranian immigrant in a small Southern town during the Iran-Hostage Crisis, the hardship during which his sense of humor was originally forged). But Id like to address the matter on his behalf.

In 2010, Ali made a joke during an improv class : Sometimes when my wife and I have sex, she seems so reluctant that I feel kind of rapey. (Thats right, he employed the very phrase that his accuser has now co-opted for her jokey description of the PIT)
In other words, he did his job. I dont know if such a joke would be appropriate in other work environments, but at an improv school, if you cant make a joke without being compared six years later to a man like the owner of DSI (who has been accused of actual sexual abuse), that would constitute a toxic environment: a censorious environment in which comedy cant possibly flourish.

Regarding the PIT bartenders complaint that a manager tried to kiss her (and immediately stopped trying to kiss her as soon as it was clear she wasnt interested): when Ali found out about this, he did the responsible thing. He asked her to tell him who the perpetrator was. Without being specific as to whom she was accusing, all the men at the theater were living under the cloud of her vague accusation. Her complaint that she felt uncomfortable during this meeting at which Ali and the other administrators were asking her to name names speaks to a potentially concerning backlash in the new, post-Weinstein era: that a new supremacy of victimhood will erase any chance of due process or reasonable conversation, and whoever complains the loudest must be right. The victims of such irresponsible mud-slinging are not just the unfairly accused, like Ali, but also the people who have suffered actual abuse at the hands of the likes of Harvey Weinstein or DSIs owner.

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by fritzbw on 12/14/2017 at 4:08 PM

Re: “Durham Church Offers Immigrant Sanctuary from Deportation

What part of illegal don't they understand. Congress is considering the DACAs plus all other illegal aliens in a bill in Congress.
The illegal aliens DACAs were minors smuggled in by their illegal alien parents in violation of immigration laws. The DACAs are now 20-36 years old. The DACAs demand a "clean" act to pass Congress. The "clean" act includes citizenship for their family, chain migration where the illegal aliens bring in relatives from other countries and basically the end to immigration laws. Current US law gives the illegal aliens/DACA children (the anchor babies) born in the US instant citizenship, so in many cases the anchor babies have dual citizenship from their mothers' homeland and US citizenship. The adult DACAs are now having children that get instant citizenship. One estimate is that the DACAs have had over 300,000 anchor babies.
The DACA program is only a small portion of the number of illegal aliens that will become the majority of voters in the US. Congressional officials didn't discuss the future ramifications on jobs, environmental effects, etc. on that many more people in the US. Ask the taxpayers what they think another 40 million illegal aliens that become citizens will do to the economy and their children and grandchildren's future employment in competition with the 20-36 year old DACAs and other illegal aliens. Only 32,000 out of 800,000 DACAs have a four year college degree. From federal information - 160,000 DACAs dropped out of school. Another 160,000 have a high school diploma or a GED but no plans to go to college.
Enforce the immigration laws.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by john1050 on 12/14/2017 at 1:40 PM

Re: “Indictments in Wake Register of Deeds Scandal Charge Laura Riddick with Embezzling $926,615

From the WRAL story:
http://www.wral.com/former-wake-register-o…
"John Stephenson, the county's internal auditor, said an average of $1,100 to $1,900 a day was taken from the office's cash receipts for vital records since at least 2008.
...
"The county filed an insurance claim in August, stating a loss of $2,333,591.30 from the Register of Deeds Office over nine years because of "employee dishonesty or employee theft." Freeman said Tuesday that number included mistakes made and waived fees as well as possible criminal cases which authorities don't have enough evidence to pursue."

The INDY article isn't exactly wrong, just badly worded.

Posted by Mojo on 12/14/2017 at 12:35 PM

Re: “The Disruption on the New Raleigh City Council Is a Blast from the Past

The comparison to the 2009 Wake County Commissioners vote could hardly be more off base, to the point of calling into question Indy's objectivity and credibility. Knowing what occurred at city council last week, let's then revisit the commission controversy, some of which is included in this story. See WTVD and WRAL stories at http://abc11.com/archive/7158748/ and http://www.wral.com/wake-commissioner-decr…

Any objective review of these two matters will find they are not at all similar.

In the commission matter, as noted Democrat Harold Webb could not attend because he was in the hospital recovering from a stroke. We see from the original stories linked above that the meeting lasted 12 hours(!). The six attending commissioners held multiple votes for the chair and all were 3-3. The Republican commissioners would not adjourn the meeting without a decisive vote, which finally occurred when Dem commissioner Betty Lou Ward had to excuse herself for a restroom break and the Republicans wouldn't formally excuse her. When she couldn't wait any longer, the decisive vote was held and the Republican Tony Gurley was elected.

Now reviewing the Raleigh City Council issue, from public statements in the N&O and Indy, it's clear that every council member knew how things stood, as well as the math. It's a disservice to Indy readers to assert this is anything like what was done to Betty Lou Ward (and commissioners Webb and Norwalk). The question is, what was the motivation then to do just that?

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by George Farthing on 12/14/2017 at 12:15 PM

Re: “Indictments in Wake Register of Deeds Scandal Charge Laura Riddick with Embezzling $926,615

Hopefully Indyweek will remember all this the next time they endorse a Republican (over and over again).

Posted by Robert Larson on 12/14/2017 at 11:25 AM

Re: “The Disruption on the New Raleigh City Council Is a Blast from the Past

okay, I need help understanding this. So, the mayor makes appointment to certain committees each term and the rest of council votes on it? What's the point of voting on it if you can't contest the assignments? Why not just remove the requirement to vote and let the mayor make the appointments uncontested if people expect council to go along with whatever the sitting mayor designates?

5 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Black Raleigh on 12/14/2017 at 11:01 AM

Re: “A Durham Crowdfunding Campaign Still Needs $50,000 to Pay Down Student Lunch Debt

This is what community is FOR! Many thanks to Ms. Miel.

Posted by Anne Havisham on 12/14/2017 at 10:15 AM

Re: “Record Review: Raleigh's Naked Naps Explore Urgency on Year of the Chump

Pretty sure that if the press release we received had mentioned Chris Grubbs, the article would have reflected that crucial fact. Since it only stated that Naked Naps is "an upbeat indie rock duo," it seemed reasonable to assume that the lineup hadn't changed. Hey thanks,"JayDubz." Keep fighting the good fight.

Posted by David Klein on 12/13/2017 at 8:19 PM

Re: “Senator Cory Booker Asks for the Release of a Department of Justice Memo on Thomas Farr’s Involvement in a Voter-Intimidation Scheme

Sessions has already strip mined the Civil Rights Division of the DoJ. Thankfully U.S. Senator Cory Booker, D-New Jersey is actively cognizant of his own oath to uphold the constitution and is not shy about putting other people's feet in the fire if they fail to do the same. Thank you for the article, Mr. Goldsmith.

2 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by growlybear on 12/13/2017 at 8:13 PM

Re: “Record Review: Raleigh's Naked Naps Explore Urgency on Year of the Chump

Pretty sure John Meier hasn't been in this band for quite some time and Chris Grubbs wrote and recorded this record, "music writer".

3 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by JayDubz on 12/13/2017 at 7:51 PM

Re: “For Years, Raleigh’s Zoning Inspectors Have Been Tasked with Duties They’re Not Equipped to Do

About time. Regulations without enforcement aren't real. The UDO was the product of a massive policymaking process that involved all interested parties; every developer should know the code.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Outofstater on 12/13/2017 at 7:42 PM

Re: “Indictments in Wake Register of Deeds Scandal Charge Laura Riddick with Embezzling $926,615

> Eventually, a claim to the county insurance company showed that $2.333,591.30 in cash had disappeared, almost daily, for nearly ten years

What is that number? That's not correct in any currency, afaik.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by xdu on 12/13/2017 at 3:25 PM

Re: “The Disruption on the New Raleigh City Council Is a Blast from the Past

I really don't understand the purpose of this article except to cause dissent. Assumptions and interpretations were made that were unfounded and divisive. The parallels drawn between the City Council's behavior and that of the County Commissioners and the Board of Education in the past are unfair and counterproductive. Let's allow the members of the City Council adjust and settle in before negative judgments are made. Rather, let's set a tone for optimism and give the new City Council a chance.

10 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Terry Snyder on 12/13/2017 at 2:07 PM

Re: “For Years, Raleigh’s Zoning Inspectors Have Been Tasked with Duties They’re Not Equipped to Do

Not sure why better zoning compliance is being enforced now, but a little late for me with the tricks the greedy developers pulled on the city (which is like stealing candy from a baby) to skirt around zoning and setbacks and environmental compliance issues with nearby in-fill re-development.

3 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by citizenshame on 12/13/2017 at 11:41 AM

Re: “The Disruption on the New Raleigh City Council Is a Blast from the Past

Two points stand out immediately upon reading this account.

If you are going to insist on continuing to use the term "slow-growth" to describe the members of one faction of the council instead of using non-negative terms like smart growth, planned growth, pro-neighborhood, then it is time that you also assigned a term that brings up negative connotations to the other side of the debate. I recommend uncontrolled, rampant growth and look forward to seeing it in print soon. Councilors like Ms Mendell advocate for planned growth by approving growth and density in areas defined by the city as "growth centers". They approved two rezoning cases in these areas at their first council meeting on Tues, Dec 5th. I will note you have chosen not to report that here as it doesn't support your narrative.

Secondly, your comparison between two different situations, that of Mr Branch leaving the council table before a vote and that of Ms Ward leaving the county commission table before a vote are not even close to being similar in the way you want to paint them. In Ms Ward's case she had asked to be excused as she needed to use the rest room. The majority on the commission REFUSED to grant her permission to leave. After waiting as long as she could, she finally had to leave unexcused. The commissioners behaved this way purposely in order to FORCE Ms Ward to leave on an unexcused absence specifically so they could seize the opportunity they created in order to take control.

In Mr Branch's case, he chose to leave without asking to be excused. One must assume he was aware of the rules the council operates under after being a councilor for two years. His choice to leave unexcused wasn't made before knowing a vote was coming. And, Mr Branch was also fully aware that if he was not satisfied with his YES vote based on his unexcused absence, he had until the meeting was adjourned to change his vote from YES to NO. We know Mr Branch understands this rule because he has used it at least once in the past to change a vote.

Honestly, if you have decided that your role in the media has changed from informing the public to carrying water for Mayor McFarlane, you should at least admit it to the public.

9 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by FONCitizen on 12/13/2017 at 10:58 AM

Re: “The Disruption on the New Raleigh City Council Is a Blast from the Past

Councilor Crowder wanted to wait on the vote but Mayor McFarlane pushed it through.

8 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Apache101 on 12/13/2017 at 10:31 AM

Re: “A Durham Crowdfunding Campaign Still Needs $50,000 to Pay Down Student Lunch Debt

@irene_krys We apologize for not catching that. The link is now in the story.

https://www.gofundme.com/pay-down-durham-s…

Posted by victoria_foodeditor on 12/13/2017 at 10:21 AM

Re: “Durham’s Public Housing Is Aging and Deteriorating. Is Partnering with Private Investors the Answer?

I am uncertain what the Mayor means when he says that affordable housing will help this issue. People with the incomes described here can never afford so-called affordable housing.

And by using land near the DOLRT for affordable housing, land values and tax revenues from very valuable property will be way below what is possible, all to gain votes.

It's a shame that local left-wing politics is more important than solving housing issues.

4 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by MJKopechne on 12/13/2017 at 9:59 AM

Re: “A Durham Crowdfunding Campaign Still Needs $50,000 to Pay Down Student Lunch Debt

Why in the world would you post something like this, with that headline, and NOT give the link for contributions?

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by irene_krys on 12/13/2017 at 9:55 AM

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