Top 10 Most-Visited PhillyNow Blog Posts of the Year
We have a news blog here at Philadelphia Weekly. Because in the age of the Internet, if you’re not constantly writing things, always, with certain “Search Engine Optimization Something or Other” keywords, everyday, forever, you lose. And news blogs are fun. Over the past year, this blog, PhillyNow, has commented/broke/followed-up on plenty of newsworthy material from around Philly and beyond. In case you missed any of it (or, as it were, ICYMI), here are the Top 10 PN posts of the year, because this is the end of the year and End of The Year Lists are great Search Engine Optimization Something or Others for blogs in the last week of December. And, like blogging in general, they’re fun!
So. In mid-November, the Senate decided they’d sneak through a provision in this year’s National Defense Authorization Act that included vague language which could have been construed to allow the military to indefinitely detain anyone affiliated with Al-Qaeda. That includes U.S. citizens. Both Pennsylvania Sens. Casey and Toomey voted in favor of the bill and that provision specifically. And, as the headline says, they had no comment to PW on the matter.
To cut to the chase, it was like this: The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board is, by all balanced accounts, horrendous. No, we kid. But they’ve got some work to do. And to start, maybe they can make it Board policy to only fund advertising campaigns that perhaps don’t tell women it’s their fault—and, their friend’s fault—if they get raped while drinking. After a media firestorm earlier this month, the PLCB yanked the online and real-life ads, but insisted their hearts were in the right place.
Retired Philadelphia Police Captain Ray Lewis decided it was time to protest on behalf of the 99 Percent earlier this fall. So, he headed up to Zuccotti Park in Lower Manhattan to do just that. But a funny thing happened: He got arrested. And when that happened, Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey wrote Lewis a letter demanding the former PPD captain stop wearing his uniform while protesting. PW spoke to Lewis shortly after the cease-and-desist letters arrived.
Before the previous blog was posted regarding Pennsylvania senators’ ideas on incarceration and making the United States part of the War on Terror’s “battlefield,” several Senators paying attention to this thing—both Democrats and Republicans—began desperately trying to oust Section 1031 from the bill, which included the infinite detention language. Casey’s office finally responded to us on this late November day, though said little to nothing. Of course, then Casey voted for the bill and all its, according to some, “fascism.”
When rumors of Occupy Philly’s end times began circulating, a Facebook user going by the name Mike Sidebotham began posting menacing messages on Occupy Philly’s Facebook page of students getting pepper-sprayed, and the text: “5 o clock is coming,” in reference to the time-deadline Mayor Michael Nutter had given to the protest’s encampment. It later turned out that Sidebotham—who said he was simply exercising his freedom of speech—was a police officer.
This was posted before the PLCB pulled their ad (or, at least the rape portion of the Gen-Y meme-age ad campaign). See above for details.
One day after the PhillyNow report, a PPD spokesman confirmed to PW that those messages (which didn’t just warn of violence, they were also pretty racist; one actually warned of prison rape) were from a police officer. Sidebotham, responsible for the posts, deleted his Facebook account (but as those of us on Facebook know, your account is never really deleted) and didn’t respond to PW for comment.
Funny thing about news. You follow up on stories, you hyperlink, and all those stories are visited, often by the same people, as is evidenced by the PLCB and Occupy/PPD posts above. This was the original post on the National Defense Authorization Act, which has since been amended, though not really to anyone’s liking. Oh, and as it turns out, the U.S. Government has been able to detain you indefinitely since 2001. So, you know, stick that in your pipe.
In 2007, PW Music/Food editor Brian McManus gave former Girard Ave. restaurant the Hot Potato Cafe a review which was titled “Spuddy Hell.” Celebrity Chef Gordon Ramsey then did a special on the spot and turned the restaurant around—“for a night. The night he was there truly was great.” In 2010, they closed. This blog is still visited all the time by, I guess, fans of the restaurant/that episode of “Kitchen Nightmares.”
Know how Republicans swept into office both nationally and statewide in 2010 by promising, what was it, jobs, or something? Well, turns out, they’re doing the opposite: In Pennsylvania and some other states, Republican lawmakers are attempting to eliminate healthcare jobs by using odd architectural standards to shut down women’s health centers, all in the name of stripping women of their rights safety.