News Bullets, "my own two hands" Tuesday;

Charticle. Listicle. Popcicle. Portmanteaux everywhere. I've been chugging away at a listicle, which I hope to have up later today or tonight. It's totally worth the wait, I promise. Let's get hit by the news so I can get back to work on this epic piece of comedy gold.

Would we pick someone better? The DC Council is likely to pass legislation that would make the position of Attorney General an elected office. Most states--43 of them--popularly elect their attorneys general. To make this change, Congress would need to amend the District's home rule charter. It's pretty clear at this point that current AG Peter Nickles is a Fenty crony and is fairly unpopular. I have to wonder if adding this elected office would really result in a better person filling this position. However, more democracy is generally better than less, so I'm in favor of this. Stating the obvious, though, even if AG becomes an elected office, whoever the mayor wants in the spot will have a significant advantage.

More info on Rock Creek crash victim. A little more information is available about the one-car crash that took the life of Joshua Kuhlman. It looks like alcohol may have been a factor, though there's been no official word. The last time Kuhlman's housemates saw him, he was "in no shape to drive." Thankfully there was only one victim in this crash. I'm a little surprised at the amount of coverage this is getting in the Post, moreso than the usual one-car accident stories.

Big New Year's parties suck. Yesterday the story of the LNS NYE event circulated the blogosphere, and eventually got covered a bit by the TV news. It looks like LNS might have been dealt a deathblow, considering the organizers have now pissed off their main clientele. It was all laughs when the City Paper wrote about them, or when Rusty blew the lid off their secrecy. Now, though, the founders of the drunk and desperate yuppie clubhouse have alienated their fans. Time to stick a fork in it. The other news yesterday was about yet another party disaster. DCist had the details of the "20s and 30s Going Out Group" party at the Harman Center. This disaster seems to involved much more violence, with many fights erupting due to a lack of alcohol and a slow coat check line. Seems the group was thrown out of the venue early due to too many people calling 911 for over-intoxication. Come on now, this is just getting sad and a bit pathetic. Given the fact that these events were so poorly planned, I have to wonder if all ABRA requirements were met--and if not, perhaps there could be fines issued to someone? It's been a while since I've worked anywhere near the bar industry, but I don't think things have gotten any less strict.

DC Party Promoter the latest State Dinner party crasher? It's being reported that Carlos Allen, a DC "party promoter" also crashed the White House State Dinner, getting in with the Indian delegation. Here's a bit more information on Allen, who for what it's worth denies any involvement. It's not yet known exactly how he got in or what trouble he may be in. I just love hearing people introduce themselves as a "party promoter." I always get a good laugh out of that. The best thing out of all of this, though, is this blurry photo of Allen:

It's unclear if this was before or after the mercury poisoning ordeal.

Bag tax is here. From what I've seen, the bag tax seems to be working to reduce the amount of plastic bags being used. It'll be interesting to see how much revenue this tax actually brings in--from what I've noticed a vast majority of people are opting not to get plastic bags. I made my way around the Grocery Triangle (Safeway, Harris Teeter and Giant) last night, looking for the elusive product that is Manicotti shells, and bag usage at all three stores seemed very low. Giant was the best, they had Manicotti and were still giving away reusable bags. Some people don't like the bag tax, and have made stupid arguments against it. One person, writing to the Columbia Heights listserv, says he will drive to Maryland to do grocery shopping to avoid the tax. This has been written up a bit around the blogs, but I just love this. Cracks me up. He'll only buy what he can carry in his own two hands, because he simply cannot be bothered to bring his own reusable bags. He makes sure to drop in the fact that he earns "six figures." With the way this guy thinks, and spends money ("hundreds of dollars a weekend at Target"), I'm surprised he's a lawyer and not an investment banker. I especially love the part about how the bag tax is taxation without representation. Sorry duder, we elected the people who approved the bag tax.

Here's to you, Mr. "in my hands" bagman. Remember this song?


  1. I don't think they were considering the new 5 cent charge at the CVS on H and 4 Streets NW. At least it didn't look that way yesterday when I was in there. I did the economically proper thing to do and did not take a bag.

    I am proud to say that I never attended anything put on by LNS. Good riddance.

    Metro update: 7:45 am, 2 of 3 escalators down at L'Enfant Plaza, 7th and Maryland Entrance. The down one was the only one working. I can always use the walking unless I have runner's knee which causes walking down anything to be an ordeal, but others can't. Wake up, Metro.

  2. Comment ripped straight from the LNS forums:

    "No one has mentioned the caliber of people at the event.Suits outnumbered tuxes, which for the most part, were all poly-blend rentals. A girl in front of me was voraciously chewing gum, like any extra on the set of Grease.I shouldn't have to breathe the same air as these people even if only while waiting in line to get in."

  3. I never doubted the bag tax would reduce the number of plastic bags handed out by supermarkets. The question is, will it reduce the amount of oil that we use to make bags, and will it reduce the number of plastic bags going into landfills? In Ireland, apparently, kitchen bag sales jumped 77% in the years following their bag ban.

    Finally, will it have any impact on all the trash in the anacostia? I'm guessing that the bag tax won't change this picture very much, since it's mostly bottles and cans.

    I would have been 100% behind a bottle bill. But apparently the last time that was tried, it got killed basically because it was branded racist. Not sure why the bag tax, which is about as regressive a tax as one could imagine, is so much better. But a bottle bill would have a far more significant impact on trash and on the environment.

  4. Why on earth is a bottle bill racist? And if DC residents continue to elect Marion Barry, do they deserve statehood?

  5. I have no idea why a bottle bill is racist but once someone spun it that way (spin the bottle? get it? ahhh ha ha) apparently it died. This was all like 20 or more years ago. I can't imagine why nobody's tried to revive it again in the much different world today, instead of this stupid bag tax.

    Anyway, because of the new bag tax, I will be wasting about 20 gallons of water washing my my hemp-knit hippie bag every day. Because when you get an 8-piece fried chicken and fries at Eddie Leonards, you are going to end up with some mumbo sauce (not to mention some grease) outside the styrofoam box. It's just a fact of life. But there is no way in hell that I'm going to pay 5 cents for a bag that I can't return.

  6. I don't like the bag tax at all. Since I live in MD and work in DC I have vowed not to buy anything in DC. Yes, I will still go to the bar and have my eyebrows tended to. But I won't be buying anything.

    Reusable bags get really dirty with nasty germs and you should constantly clean them with water and soap. So much for conservation.