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Echo Chamber (April 16) : News You Could Have Read Anywhere

  • Disabled local Army veteran James Raymond is fighting his redeployment. Raymond, now a student at UB, lost his hearing while fighting in Afghanistan and suffered a knee injury that resulted in his honorable discharge from the Army. He was placed on Individual Readiness Reserve, but is now being called back into action for deployment to Iraq, despite being declared 10 percent disabled by the VA. Since he was last active duty, Raymond has put on 50 lbs. and has become addicted to smoking. He fears he’s not physically prepared for combat, and that his knee won’t hold up.
  • Harvard economist Edward Glaesar, the guy who wrote in City Journal that Buffalo won’t make a comeback, and that the “government should stop bribing people to stay” here, will speak in Buffalo Friday as part of a panel discussion on Buffalo’s future. The panel, entitled “Resurrecting Buffalo,” will feature Anthony Armstrong of LISC, Paul Buckley of Applied Sciences Group, Rich Tobe from the City of Buffalo, Robert Gioia of the John R. Oishei Foundation, and Cynthia Zane of Hilbert College. It’s at 2pm at the WNED studios. Registration is $30.
  • The newly renovated Erie Canal Harbor’s history site is drawing sharp criticism from historians and Erie Canal Harbor Redevelopment Committee board members. They say current displays at the site do a poor job of interpreting the site’s history. This comes only weeks before the scheduled Memorial Day “soft” opening of the site.
  • Mayor Byron Brown, voted “worst politician” by Artvoice readers in this year’s Best of Buffalo poll, is apparently losing support from all sectors. Members of a city union that worked hard for his election only three years ago, Local 264 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, plan to protest outside of the mayor’s Thursday night fundraiser at Kleinhans Music Hall. The union’s gripe (a legit one) is that its employees haven’t received a raise since 2001.