Category: Local / Living

Decline and Fall of Rudy Guiliani

What would have become of Mr. Giuliani if the attack on the World Trade Center had never happened? At some point he might have run for senator or governor in New York, based upon his strong record as mayor, or perhaps landed the attorney general’s job in a Republican administration, based on his record as a trailblazing prosecutor.

He wouldn’t have accumulated as much cash or achieved worldwide fame. But then again his hero’s reputation is long gone. (“I am afraid it will be on my gravestone — ‘Rudy Giuliani: He lied for Trump,’” he told The New Yorker in 2019.) His political power has evaporated, and his riches have been almost exhausted — he’s been selling personalized video greetings for $325, and he dressed as a feathered jack-in-the-box for the Fox show “The Masked Singer” this spring. Even his accomplishments on the day the World Trade Center was attacked have been tarnished by numerous findings of disastrous mistakes he and his administration made.

Rudy Giuliani Is Alone
Andrew Kirtzman
NYTIMES

Five Books for Labor Day

1. Working: People Talk About What They Do All Day and How They Feel About What They Do
Studs Terkel
Studs Terkel’s classic oral history Working is a compelling look at jobs and the people who do them. Consisting of over one hundred interviews with everyone from a gravedigger to a studio head, this book provides a “brilliant” and enduring portrait of people’s feelings about their working lives.

2. Gig: Americans Talk About Their Jobs
John Bowe (Editor), Marisa Bowe (Editor), Sabin Streeter (Editor), Daron Murphy (Editor), Rose Kernochan (Editor)
This wide-ranging survey of the American economy at the turn of the millennium is stunning, surprising, and always entertaining. It gives us an unflinching view of the fabric of this country from the point of view of the people who keep it all moving. The more than 120 roughly textured monologues that make up Gig beautifully capture the voices of our fast-paced and diverse economy. The selections demonstrate how much our world has changed–and stayed the same–in the three decades prior to the turn of the millennium. If you think things have speeded up, become more complicated and more technological, you’re right.

3. Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America
Barbara Ehrenreich
Millions of Americans work full time, year round, for poverty-level wages. In 1998, Barbara Ehrenreich decided to join them. She was inspired in part by the rhetoric surrounding welfare reform, which promised that a job—any job—can be the ticket to a better life. But how does anyone survive, let alone prosper, on $6 an hour?

4. Rivethead: Tales from the Assembly Line
Ben Hamper
The man the Detroit Free Press calls “a blue collar Tom Wolfe” delivers a full-barreled blast of truth and gritty reality in Rivethead, a no-holds-barred journey through the belly of the American industrial beast.

5. A Working Stiff’s Manifesto: A Memoir
Iain Levison
In ten years, Iain Levison has lived in six states and worked at forty-two jobs, from fish cutter in Alaska to furniture mover in North Carolina, film-set gopher, oil deliveryman, truck driver, and crab fisherman. He quit thirty of them, got fired from nine, and has difficulty remembering the other three. Whatever could go wrong often did, hilariously.

* Bonus. A view from the 1% side of things –
The Smartest Guys in the Room: The Amazing Rise and Scandalous Fall of Enron
Bethany McLean
Remarkably, it was just two years ago that Enron was thought to epitomize a great New Economy company, with its skyrocketing profits and share price. But that was before Fortune published an article by McLean that asked a seemingly innocent question: How exactly does Enron make money? From that point on, Enron’s house of cards began to crumble. Now, McLean and Elkind have investigated much deeper, to offer the definitive book about the Enron scandal and the fascinating people behind it.

Cool Streets – TimeOut, List of

TimeOut

The 33 coolest streets in the world
We quizzed 20,000 city-dwellers and asked local experts to rank the top streets in the world for food, fun, culture and community

1. Rue Wellington, Montreal
2. Gertrude Street, Melbourne
3. Great Western Road, Glasgow
4. Yongkang Street, Taipei
5. Værnedamsvej, Copenhagen
6. Karangahape Road, Auckland
7. Tai Ping Shan Street, Hong Kong
8. Yaowarat Road, Bangkok
9. Oranienstrasse, Berlin
10. Hayes Street, San Francisco
11. Avenida Ámsterdam, Mexico City
12. Kolokotroni, Athens
13. Virgil Avenue, Los Angeles
14. Ossington Avenue, Toronto
15. Via Provenza, Medellín
16. Calle Ocho, Miami
17. Deptford High Street, London
18. Praça das Flores, Lisbon
19. Oxford Street, Accra
20. Wentworth Avenue, Chicago
21. Cutting Room Square, Manchester
22. Capel Street, Dublin
23. Jumeirah Beach Road, Dubai
24. Enmore Road, Sydney
25. Kagurazaka, Tokyo
26. Kloof Street, Cape Town
27. Süleyman Seba Caddesi, Istanbul
28. Calle Echegaray, Madrid
29. MacDougal Street, New York
30. Carrer del Comte Borrell, Barcelona
31. Newbury Street, Boston
32. Colaba Causeway, Mumbai
33. Everton Road, Singapore

Quantifying Hospice Chaplain Productivity

‘Spiritual Care Drive-Bys’
IN THE FIRST MONTH after joining the group of hospice chaplains in Minnesota, the Rev. Heather Thonvold was invited to five potlucks. To endure the constant sorrow of the work, the more than a dozen clergy members ministered to one another. Sometimes the cantor in the group played guitar for his mostly Protestant colleagues. There was comfort in regarding their work as a calling, several of them said.

In August 2020, the productivity revolution arrived for them in an email from their employer, a nonprofit called Allina Health.

“The timing is not ideal,” the message said, with the team already strained by the pandemic. But workloads varied too widely, and “the stark reality at this point is we cannot wait any longer.”

Allina was already keeping track of productivity, but now there would be stricter procedures with higher expectations. Every morning the chaplains would share on a spreadsheet the number of “productivity points” they anticipated earning. Every evening, software would calculate whether they had met their goals.

But dying defied planning. Patients broke down, canceled appointments, drew final breaths. This left the clergy scrambling and in a perpetual dilemma. “Do I see the patients who earn the points or do I see the patients who really need to be seen?” as Mx. Thonvold put it.

The Rise of the Worker Productivity Score
Across industries and incomes, more employees are being tracked, recorded and ranked. What is gained, companies say, is efficiency and accountability. What is lost?
By Jodi Kantor and Arya Sundaram
Produced by Aliza Aufrichtig and Rumsey Taylor