The future ain’t pretty

I was speaking to an individual today who has extensive insights into French Quarter businesses. I’ll call him a “very reliable anonymous source.” We chatted about business returning to the Quarter and things returning to our dysfunctional level of normalcy. We noted how many establishments didn’t return from the shutdown and the number of vacant buildings there are. I commented on how I anticipate huge corporate chains to move in and he replied, “They already are.”

According to “my source,” one big player who is looking to expand to Bourbon Street is TACO BELL. My first thought was a fast food joint and I guess I scowled in confusion. Not your average strip mall variant of the fast food chain, he said, but a huge, mega Taco Bell Cantina, like the one in Las Vegas. It’s more in line with the Hard Rock Cafe franchise, which also has a presence on Bourbon Street. I had to look this one up online.

A flagship Taco Bell. A monster location with multi-floors and alcoholic beverages. They even have a gift shop with Taco Bell apparel. I’ll say it right now: if you have Taco Bell printed on your shirt, you better be an employee. I can respect a TB employee. I cringe at the thought of people spending $30 on a T-shirt to advertise a corporation as a status symbol. Dumb asses will collect and wear Hard Rock Cafe shirts, so much for common sense I guess.

Read more: Visit Taco Bell’s Flagship Restaurant in Las Vegas (tacobell.com)

A year ago I predicted after the pandemic and the huge corporations pick through the rubble of destroyed small businesses that the French Quarter will become a Disney outlet. Let me amend that, it may become like a Fremont Street in Las Vegas. This works well with the mayor’s vision of pedestrian mall in the Quarter. The city would love to have large multinational corporations moving in and driving out the few remaining mom-and-pop establishments.

The small businesses whine and complain when license fees, taxes and regulations restrict their operations. Big corporations can absorb those costs and even welcome them. High costs of operations keep out the small time start-ups while allowing them more pull with the city.

Just what I want, Fremont Street. Drunk tourists on a ZipLine screaming past my apartment window every night vomiting alcohol-saturated Krystal burgers onto Bourbon Street below. People on balconies pelting the zip liners with beads and bottles. Think it sounds implausible? One thing we have learned over the past couple of years is: if a massive corporation throws enough money at the right political campaigns, they can get away with killing people.

We don’t know yet how Bourbon Street will change over the next few years, but have no doubt that it will change.

Contact Eric T. Styles at styles@thequarterrat.com.

2 people lacerated with straight razor after altercation with prostitute at Willie’s Chicken Shack

(Graphic by Eric T. Styles; photo courtesy of NOPD)
A Black female believed to be a prostitute and accused of cutting two victims during a Sunday night altercation at Willie’s Chicken Shack on Canal Street is wanted by New Orleans Police in connection to the incident.

The incident occurred shortly after 11:30 p.m. in the 700 block of Canal Street, when the unidentified Black female suspect lacerated two victims with a straight razor during the altercation, according to Eighth District police.

The female, pictured above, is described as approximately 5 foot 6 inches tall, wears a silver or bleach blonde wig and is in her early 30s.

Anyone with information regarding the identity and/or whereabouts of the unknown female suspect is asked to contact Eighth District detectives at 504-658-6080. Anonymously callers can contact Crimestoppers at 504-822-1111 or toll-free at 877-903-7867.   

Hard Rock Hotel Swept Away

Mayor Cantrell posted on social media on April 21,9021:

“Canal Street lake-bound is officially reopened to vehicle traffic for the first time since the Hard Rock collapse. Even as the challenges piled up in the last 18 months — the work never stopped. We grieve for the lives lost, and we are grateful for the progress that has been made. We thank our businesses and our residents for their patience.”

To read the Mayor’s words it would sound as if she is proud of the work her administration has done in clearing up the collapse site. ” Even as the challenges piled up in the last 18 months — the work never stopped. ”

A little perspective here: The entire World Trade Center disaster site was cleaned up in only SEVEN MONTHS. The Twin-fucking-Towers and several other buildings hauled away in less than half the time of one 18 story building.

“…the work never stopped ” The collapse occurred in October of 2019, demolition didn’t start until May of 2020. Correction, there was about seven months of nothing but thumbs up collective asses trying to un-cluster this fuck. The last body wasn’t recovered until 10 months after the disaster. Even by a Big Easy metric, this was slower than shit through a funnel.

There has been a long history of a corruption and incompetency with the New Orleans building inspectors going back to the Landrieu administration. There was a Federal investigation into bribery involving city inspector Kevin Richardson and charges were filed. He was dismissed from his position by then Mayor Landrieu.

Just months prior to the HRH collapse, the city leadership blustered about holding the permit inspectors accountable using the latest in GPS tracking and digital records. City building inspectors Julie Tweeter, Eric Treadaway were suspended and Thomas Dwyer resigned before he could be suspended (What a pussy).

With all of the current social outrage over the behavior of law enforcement recklessly taking lives and being held responsible, I ask why aren’t all government employees held to the same level of accountability? Officials, employed by the city failed at their positions whether by negligence or corruption and it resulted in the deaths of three construction workers and dozens more injured are just allowed to resign and walk away?

Would everybody have been cool with Derek Chauvin just handing in his resignation and walking away? I didn’t think so. Is it comparing apples and oranges? City employees fucked up and people died. In one case the city government throws the employee under the bus in the face of public opinion, the other city employees are quietly ushered out the back door of city hall.

Perhaps indicting those building inspectors for negligent homicide would open up a Costco-sized can of worms for city hall that they would prefer not to see the light of day. Disclosure would involve emails and records from with in the department and the depth of the incompetence would reveal more that there were more people involved in the endemic corruption of city hall. Where were their supervisors?

QR-ANON POSTS:

Julian Assange, Seth Rich, Delmer Joel Ramírez Palma

What do these three men have in common?
Think whistle-blower.
Think targeted.

Why was Delmer Joel Ramírez Palma deported back to Honduras after giving an interview about HRH construction safety issues?
How did ICE get suddenly involved with a migrant who had been here for 17 years? (Washington Post from 11/30/19)

Why would a federal agency (ICE) deport a material witness to an investigation of a serious construction accident that killed three and left 20 injured?


WQRWE
We’re Quarter Rats,
We’re Everywhere

Violent Weekend In French Quarter

Business is returning to the French Quarter and along with it comes the problems. This last weekend in April 2021 has been a violent one.

Early Saturday morning about 1:15 AM 5 people on Bourbon street were wounded by gunfire. On the 300 block of Bourbon Street an argument between two men escalated into gun shots that left those people with non life threatening injuries. The victims ages ranged from 20 to 60 years old.

25 hours later a 33 year old woman was grazed in the leg by a bullet at Bourbon and Canal streets about 2:00 AM on Sunday morning

BE ON THE WOOK OUT
#NOPD looking for street performer who wears a Star Wars Chewbacca costume, believed to be unknown black male in his 20s. Subject is suspected of stabbing victim w/knife during altercation on April 24. Call 504-658-6080 or @Crimestoppers at 504-822-1111 with any information.

The stabbing incident took place on the 700 block of Toulouse Street about 8:50 PM. The condition of the victim is still unknown.

EXCLUSIVE TO THE QUARTER RAT
A long time Bourbon Street doorman told the Quarter Rat:
“3 street hustlers jumped him and tried to rob him by the RA Shop, he was defending him self by all account, no blood stains or blood trail. I did see a dude run by holding his stomach, evidently he fell out by Ricks in 300 block and that’s when (it is believed) NOPD got involved.”

The doorman joked, “He walked by me earlier that night and fist bumped me, I didn’t see any altercation at all? NOBODY gonna snitch on a Wookie.”

The odds of being stabbed by a Wookie are low, but never zero.