Wal-Mart carries with it three reputations in Albuquerque: It has really low prices, pays really low wages and every time they put in a new one, it causes quite a stir. At least when it comes to this last generality, the proposed Supercenter on Wyoming and Menaul proves to be no exception. Only this time, Wal-Mart is shaking up more than the local neighborhoods, it's wedging its way right into the District 7 race for City Council.
The horror, devastation and misery of Hurricane Katrina cannot be escaped. My wife and I sit riveted in front of the television screen watching astounding images as an incredible, beautiful and very special American city, a place we had grown to love, full of people we know and care for as friends, is literally erased from existence.
With this mayoral election, lil' Albuquerque has caught up to many larger cities. Maybe it's a rite of passage in graduating from "cow town with a dollop of sleaze," as one national magazine described us in the '80s, to a spot on the "best of" lists of Forbes and Money. But unlike other milestones in our city's history, we should leave this one out of our Tricentennial celebrations.
Dateline: Hungary—A district mayor in Budapest has proposed a strict new dress code for City Hall employees, which would allow only women with “pretty legs” to wear short skirts. Gyorgy Mitnyan, the conservative mayor of the city's 12th district, is also trying to ban skirts that are shorter than 2-3 centimeters (one inch) above the knee. Budapest Mayor Gabor Demszky called the proposal simply “crass.” Demszky issued a statement to the Hungarian state news agency MTI, dismissing Mitnyan's “pretty legs” proposal. “I flatly reject the idea in the name of City Hall, which employs hundreds of women workers,” he said. The proposal is nevertheless scheduled for debate this week.
In a stunning act of leadership, President George W. Bush today announced the withdrawal of all troops from Iraq to assist in Hurricane Katrina rescue and recovery efforts. "It's simple," said Bush, for once not fumbling for words. "Our own people have to come first. The Iraqi people, it's plain to see, need to solve their own problems." Reportedly "under fire" from major campaign contributors including Halliburton and Bechtel for the troop withdrawal, Bush stated, "I'm tired of being a puppet on a string. From now on I'm going to be president of this great nation."