Wednesday, August 11, 2004 New page by 10 a.m. Monday-Friday
July hits 2,409,046 (June also exceeded 2-million hits)
Bin Laden hints major assassination intelligence officials say a high-profile political assassination, triggered by the public release of a new message from Osama bin Laden, will lead off the next major al Qaeda terrorist attack "We're talking about planning at the screwdriver level," one official said. "It is very detailed."
Blockbuster to enter rent-by-mail business No. 1 retail video chain today begins move against Web-based Netflix. Blockbuster Online will follow the same model as other services: For about $20 a month, subscribers can go to www.blockbuster.com and order up to three DVDs to be delivered by mail. Once a DVD is returned in a prepaid envelope, another can be ordered. If a customer has created a wish list, Blockbuster will send the next selection.
Fire retardant traces found in farmed and wild salmon
Complaint filed against Swift Boat Veterans' ads
Man tells Austin paper Pakistani was videotaping tourist spots
Dallas council may halt big-box store development
Los Angeles council puts brakes on big-box stores, but no ban
CAPPS II airport screening plan supposedly canned
US plans assault in Najaf Solemn-faced U.S. Marines and soldiers prepared for what appeared to be a decisive battle for Najaf, the holiest city in Iraq, while the supreme leader of neighboring Iran warned that American combat operations in Najaf constitute "one of the darkest crimes of humanity."
US drains Iraqi swamp - of sewage In a bid to improve health and goodwill, US engineers are spending $500 million on Baghdad's infrastructure.
Abu Ghraib Intelligence officers implicated NBC News has learned a military investigation into prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib prison now implicates military intelligence officers in addition to military police already charged.
While your commentary on Toyota is correct there is more to this story than meets the eye. Henry Ford wanted to build a plant in SA back in the 1920's and left with the comment that we were crazy after trying to deal with the city officials and the landowners. And there has always been some question about the old VW facility out on O'Conner and exactly why they left town, instead of rebuilding after the fire. I myself came to this city back in 1984 to start up a new manufacturing plant, funded by bonds, that failed partly from being oversold in potential about the labor availability and partly from a lack of infrastructure to support large scale manufacturing.
And then there are the interesting cases where landowners would not yield property for transition roads from 410 to 281 near the airport and again at 281 and 1604 which has caused massive problems over the years with traffic. Unlike most major cities the city council and county board of supervisors have been at the mercy of a small group of families who actually run the city and as a result often make final decisions on major projects with very narrow self-interest goals driving the cart. In a city like Los Angeles or Chicago the interests of a landowner, no matter who it is, would be over-ridden by the governing bodies and land simply condemned and purchased for a project like this.
But the city and council are not really to blame. The culture in SA is different, property rights are sacred and more than once landed individuals have discouraged outsiders from setting up shop in SA after studying all the facts. Toyota should have done its homework better, that is the bottom line. They have nobody to really blame but themselves. Garza was put in place to be a foil in this play by those who knew fully well what the terms of deal would be and what the future development would look like regarding their property. The recent smoking ordinance clearly showed his inexperience in leadership and his inability to control events once they were in motion.
The Toyota story is far from over. The real war wages in the background. Toyota has a history of wanting to dominate the cities they locate in and have met their match in SA with landowners and a hidden power structure that actually runs the city unelected. The have misread the signals they were sent, as they were supposed to, and things from the local perspective are going according to plan. I would not surprise me at all if the Toyota deal eventually was watered down to be nothing more than distribution center in the end with the manufacturing being shifted to a smaller location they can control better as they do in other locations.The one thing Japanese firms in the US are noted for is the distain of controversy in thier business plans.
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