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The Blanche Report: Brainwaves, Tranquilizers & The Nobel Peace Prize

Detroit, as the mayor of Chicago indelicately put it, needs a bomb. Well, today it’s former mayor Kwame Kilpatrick got a personal bomb when he was sentenced to 28 years in prison for corruption. Specifically racketeering, extortion and bribery. Sound familiar? It’s what has gone on in Montreal and Laval for decades. That’s what the Charbonneau commission is all about.

Let’s take a bet. Aside from Laval’s ex-mayor Vaillancourt who seems to be in a league of his own, how many of those who have had their sticky little fingers in your pocket for years will be serving any time? Two? Maybe three people?  And if they do get some time, it will be in one of those ‘hotels’ or to do community service or walk around with an ankle bracelet. Ding dong, Avon calling.

Marois’s missive in charge of Montreal, Jean Francois Lisee is not a happy camper. He woke up this morning and realized that all of the candidates running for mayor of Montreal want to opt out of the charter of values should it ever become law. Good morning America.

This brainwave revelation should be put into the same envelope as this one:  what kind of punishment will be doled out to the doctors who refuse to take off their yarmulkas, hijabs and other religious artifacts? Who is going to administer this ethnic cleansing? Blanche, time to get out the comet. We’re gonna havta do a hecka of a lot of cleaning in the next bit o time. Backwater brainwaves.

Best buy some tranquilizers for next week, specifically for next Thursday October 17. That is when the US must make a payment on its debt. What happens if the United States fails to pay due to the stalemate now happening in Washington?  Remember the fall of Lehman Brothers in 2008-2009? Remember how the market went crashing down with a huge thud?

Policymakers in Washington know that a US debt default is no small matter and know what the consequences of a fresh crash will be. All of which suggests that somebody – almost certainly the Republicans – will back off before 17 October. The alternative is that the current vintage of US politicians will become infamous as the most incompetent in history.

As of this writing, it seems that the two sides are meeting. Maybe, just maybe they will come to their senses. There are quite a few people up for the Nobel peace prize. Amongst them is Malala Yousafzai, the 16 year old Pakistani girl who was shot in the head by the Taliban for getting an education and encouraging other young woman to do likewise. We happened to have heard her speak today. She is wise beyond her young years and has a courage that we have not heard in a very long time. We think she should be introduced to princess pauline. Perhaps meeting someone of Malala’s ilk would rub off on her. Well, probably not, but maybe that grotesque smile would disappear for a while. Ich. Don’t you find it odd that the Sochi winter olympics are starting in 120 days and you’ve heard nada a word about them? Fear not, we’ll fill you in. 

Let’s start with the cost of $15 billion half of which is alleged to have disappeared in corrupt building contracts. We particularly liked this quote: An 18-mile road between Sochi, where events such as hockey, speed skating and figure skating will be held has become a symbol of the huge cost increases, spiraling to a reported $8.6bn. “You could have paved this road with five million tons of gold or caviar and the price would have been the same.” Who’s watching the store over there? Hey – same as here, the ones with their hands in the till!

Then there’s the issue of snow. They stored snow from last winter in case there’s no snow this year, which could easily happen as the average temperature in February is 10 Celsius. They also bought 400 snow making machines. And finally, there’s the problem of the remote location of the games. Seems it’s very far from anything and could affect the numbers of people wanting to actually buy tickets to the games. Who picks these places anyway? And finally a pretty useless, yet juicy bit of information. The Versace mansion in Miami sold for $41.5 million. Donald Trump was one of those bidding on the house, but lost out when he stopped at $41 million. It has 10 bedrooms and 11 bathrooms amongst other sundry features. It was bought by Joe Nakash, of Jordache Jeans and clothing fame.

I am a Montrealaise.

Good Shabbos,

We’ll talk…

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