Friday, March 30, 2007

Ground Hog Day?

Drain Pipe, Baton Rouge LA 3/2007 from Baton Rouge Blues
copyright Wm. Greiner
Google Goes Back to Pre-Katrina Maps

Associated Press Writer

NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- Google's popular map portal has replaced post-Hurricane Katrina satellite imagery with pictures taken before the storm, leaving locals feeling like they're in a time loop and even fueling suspicions of a conspiracy.

Scroll across the city and the Mississippi Gulf Coast, and everything is back to normal: Marinas are filled with boats, bridges are intact and parks are filled with healthy, full-bodied trees.
"Come on," said an incredulous Ruston Henry, president of the economic development association in New Orleans' devastated Lower 9th Ward. "Just put in big bold this: 'Google, don't pull the wool over the world's eyes. Let the truth shine.'"
excerpt 3/30/2007

Thursday, March 29, 2007


Wisteria, Baton Rouge LA 3/2007 from Baton Rouge Blues
copyright Wm. Greiner

Pretty flew away today.
She flew away I say.
Pretty flew away.

She was our only bird,
Yes , she was a bird
And she is gone today.

Pretty, pretty where are you?
We are lonely, lonely for you!
You flew , flew , flew.
Gone are you.

You were pretty too!

I Hear the Train a comin'..*

Spray Painted House, New Orleans LA 3/2007
copyright Wm. Greiner
After a quiet hurricane season last year, Florida and other Gulf Coast states likely will be hit with fewer storms than during the active 2005 season, which spawned the massive hurricanes Katrina and Rita, AccuWeather said.

But the storms forecast for the region will pack a punch.
"We will not get anywhere near the amount of storms that we did in 2005, but the intensity of the storms we do get will be of major concern," Joe Bastardi, chief hurricane forecaster for, said in a statement.

By Janet McGurty
Excerpt: Strong hurricanes to hit U.S. Gulf in 07: AccuWeather 3/27/07
Yahoo News

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

The other shoe drops...

Pink Shoe , Baton Rouge LA 3/2007 from Baton Rouge Blues
copyright Wm. Greiner

At the one year mark, people started really digesting what happened (with Katrina) and what it means to their lives and depression started to sink in, experts say. As that passes and signs of post-traumatic stress disorder and severe depression appear in the area, average area residents have few places to turn to escape the ever-present hurricane destruction, be it in shattered buildings or lives.

“Even some of the stronger people are starting to wear down. Now, I’m seeing people who are just worn out” . Dr. Thomas yarnell of the Gulf Coast Counseling Center.

Excerpt from Mental problems grow by Joshua Norman McClatchy Newspapers 3/27/2007

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

OH! You’re in good hands*

Light fixture on House, Baton Rouge LA 3/2007 from Baton Rouge Blues
copyright Wm. Greiner

Profits raise eyebrows
Insurers, critics face off over record 2006 income

Advocate staff and news services 3/27/07

The headline numbers were eye-popping: Allstate reported a record $5 Billion profit for 2006!

*“You’re in good hands” is the advertising slogan for Allstate Insurance.

Monday, March 26, 2007


Tow Truck - Baton Rouge Raceway, Baton Rouge 2006
copyright Wm. Greiner

Photographs Do Not Bend Gallery
1202 Dragon Street, Suite 103
Dallas, TX 75207
tel: 214.969.1852 fax: 214.745.9901


Opening Friday March 30th 6-8pm
March 30 - May 5, 2007

This group show will include photographs by Joel Sternfeld, Tod Papageorge, Henry Wessel, Jr., Frank Gohlke, Keith Carter, David Graham, William Greiner, and Barbara Crane and many others.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Send lawyers, guns and money*

ZULU Beads , New Orleans 3/2007
copyright Wm. Greiner

- An overwhelming caseload prevents New Orleans’ public defenders from adequately representing poor defendants , so many prisoners are being released from jail because of the back log!

- Concealed handgun permit applications in New Orleans numbered 432 in 2003 and that number has jumped to 832 in 2006!

- Katrina flood claims against the Army Corps. Of Engineers now exceeds $400 billion mark!

*Lawyers, Guns and Money Lyrics - Warren Zevon

Sources - Judge told public defenders stretched too thin by Michael Kunzelman Associated Press 3-24-07 , N.O. residents find “confidence” in guns since storm by Mary Foster Associated Press 3-24-07 , Katrina flooding claims surpass $400 billion Associated Press 3-24-07 .

Friday, March 23, 2007


Jump , LSU Tennis, 3/2007 from Baton Rouge Blues
copyright Wm. Greiner

I am a human being.
I am an American.
I am a Southerner.
I am a Louisianan.
I am a Baton Rougian
And always New Orleanian!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007


Boy in Red Cap, Baton Rouge LA 10/2006 from Baton Rouge Blues
copyright Wm. Greiner

I am not the William Greiner selling his watercolors on Ebay!
I am not the William Greiner PRESIDENT EMERITUS - University at Buffalo Law School!
I am not the William Greiner Chairman, Department of Art - Olivet Nazarene University!
I am not the William Greiner Chief Investment Officer , UMB Financial Corporation!
I am not the William Greiner Principal, Rockmont Capital!
I am not the William Greiner partner, Greiner-Maltz Co.!
I am not the William Greiner developer , Bedford Mobil Car Wash!
I am not the William Greiner township engineer, Pike County (?)!
I am not the William Greiner author of The Nature and Functions of Law (4th ed. 1980)!
I am not the William Greiner truck driver and UFO witness!
I am not the William Greiner Chairman, TOWN OF BEDFORD!
I am not the William Greiner Choice Office , Palm Beach employee!
I am not the William Greiner Wesleyan University Alumni!
Obviously, I am not the William Greiner owner Greiner-Kelly Drug Company (1891 to 1899)!


Lemon Tree , Lafayette LA 3/2007
copyright Wm. Greiner
Louisiana Governor Won’t Seek 2nd Term
Published: March 21, 2007
NEW ORLEANS, March 20 — Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco, politically battered by a shaky post-Hurricane Katrina performance, announced Tuesday that she would not seek election to a second term this fall.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Art of Taxation

Art Fair Booth , Key Biscayne - Miami 3/2007
All reproduction rights reserved Wm. Greiner

March 19, 2007

At the Congressional Arts Breakfast, Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) announced that he would introduce the “Artist Deduction Bill” immediately following Arts Advocacy Day. The “Artist Deduction Bill” supports individual artists by allowing them to take a fair-market value tax deduction for works they donate to nonprofit organizations. As you may know, Rep. Lewis is a hero of the civil rights movement, and it is an honor to have him as the lead sponsor of a bill that takes a step toward providing equity for artists. He was joined by Rep. Jim Ramstad (R-MN) in introducing the bill on March 14, the day after the Congressional Arts Breakfast.

Under current law, creators and collectors are treated differently when they donate tangible works (e.g., paintings or manuscripts) to museums, libraries, educational or other collecting institutions. A collector may deduct the fair-market value of the work, but creators may deduct only their "basis" value—essentially the cost of materials such as paint and canvas.

We ask that you support this important legislation by sending a message to your Members of Congress asking them to co-sponsor S. 548 or H.R.1524, which would allow artists to take a fair-market value deduction for works given to and retained by nonprofit institutions.
Thank you for your continued support!

Click here. to remove your name from receiving e-mails regarding arts advocacy
Click to also remove your name from receiving other e-mails from Americans for the Arts or its Arts Action Fund

1000 Vermont Avenue NW6th FloorWashington DC . 20005 T 202.371.2830 F 202.371.0424
One East 53rd Street . 2nd Floor New York NY . 10022 T 212.223.2787 F 212.980.4857

Monday, March 19, 2007

C'est Levee

Construction Site, Baton Rouge LA 2/2007 from Baton Rouge Blues.
All reproduction rights reserved Wm. Greiner
Homeowners drop insurance after Katrina
By MICHAEL KUNZELMAN, Associated Press Writer
NEW ORLEANS - Disgusted with his insurance company after Hurricane Katrina, the Rev. Simmie Harvey let his homeowner policy lapse and left his house in the hands of a higher power.
Somebody up there must like the 88-year-old Baptist minister: His newly uninsured house escaped serious damage last month when a tornado ripped through the city's Uptown neighborhood and toppled a tree that narrowly missed his home.

"I wasn't lucky. I'm blessed," he said. "I'm going to be all right. The Lord takes care of me."
Facing soaring premiums or feeling shortchanged by their insurers, a growing number of homeowners and businesses in Louisiana and Mississippi are "going bare," or dropping their coverage altogether, insurance agents and consumer advocates say. Many more are drastically reducing their coverage.

"I have every belief that it's going to be more and more common," said Amy Bach, executive director of the United Policyholders advocacy group. "If it's a choice between eating or paying their insurance bills, of course they're going to eat."

With the new hurricane season beginning June 1, it is a risky strategy. These people could lose everything in a storm or some kind of tragic accident around the house.

"You're basically playing Russian roulette with your most valuable asset," said Robert Hartwig, president and chief economist of the Insurance Information Institute, an industry-funded group.

Elderly homeowners — particularly those on fixed incomes and those who have paid off their mortgages — may be the most likely to go uninsured. Most homeowners don't have that choice, because mortgage companies require borrowers to have insurance. Those whose homes are paid off can drop their policies, unless they are getting government grants or loans that require one.
"Definitely, you'll be seeing more of this," said Bennett Powell, a Metairie insurance agent whose firm sold Harvey his policy.

Exactly how many policyholders are going bare is unclear. The insurance commissioners in Mississippi and Louisiana are not keeping track, and insurers say they do not how many of their former customers are simply buying new policies from a different company.

Shopping around can also be a risky strategy, because homeowners in Louisiana who switch are no longer protected by a state law that bars insurers from canceling policies that have been in effect for three years or longer.

"Do not shop," said Louisiana Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon. "That protection outweighs the advantage of shopping, in my opinion."

Homeowner insurance typically covers wind damage from hurricanes, as well as damage to the home from fires, auto accidents and other misfortunes. It also protects a homeowner if someone gets injured on the property. Along the Gulf Coast, flood insurance is sold separately from homeowner insurance, and made available thorugh a federal program.

Robert Page, a Houma, La.-based insurance agent and president-elect of the National Association of Professional Insurance Agents, said the owners of three large apartment complexes in Houma recently dropped their wind and hail coverage after their premiums doubled. Page said only a few of his thousands of customers have gone completely bare after Katrina.

But "it's only the beginning," he said. "In my opinion, it's going to get worse before it gets better."

Harvey, whose modest ranch-style house has a neat lawn and a long driveway for his black Cadillac, rode out Katrina in his home during the summer of 2005 and only briefly evacuated the city in the storm's chaotic aftermath.

His roughly $1,800 annual premium did not increase significantly after Katrina, but he said he elected to drop his Farmers Insurance Co. policy because the company paid him about $4,000 even though he blames the wind for about $10,000 in damage to his roof.

"If that's all I can get, I don't have any need to get insurance," he said, figuring he is better off saving his money than paying premiums.

In Louisiana, insurance companies raised their homeowner rates an average of 13.2 percent in 2006, according to Amy Whittington, spokeswoman for the Louisiana Insurance Department. Some insurers went far higher.

Many small business owners are feeling the sharpest pinch. The insurer of last resort for many Mississippi homeowners and businesses is the state's "wind pool," and its commercial rates have jumped 268 percent since Katrina.

Tom Simmons, who owns three office buildings in Gulfport, Miss., said he paid $3,070 in premiums for the rental properties before Katrina. Maintaining that level of coverage this year would cost more than $25,000, he said.

Simmons is considering dropping his wind and hail policies but holding onto his fire and liability coverage. Even though none of his properties flooded during Katrina, the thought of heading into the next storm season without wind coverage is "scary as hell."

"The whole darn area is facing this sort of thing," he said. "The insurance companies obviously want out. Maybe they're just pricing us out of the market rather than just saying they're leaving the state."

Jeffrey O'Keefe, president of the Bradford-O'Keefe Funeral Homes on Mississippi's Gulf Coast, already has scaled back his coverage.

Before Katrina, he paid $61,224 in annual premiums to insure five funeral homes, two cemeteries and a crematorium. Renewing that $7 million in coverage would have cost about $781,000, so he reduced his coverage to $2 million. But he is still paying $122,113 in premiums, twice as much as before the storm.

"As a small business owner, it's really putting a hurt on us," he said. "It's a bad problem."

Thursday, March 15, 2007


Walter the Pup, New Orleans 3/2005
all reproduction rights reserved Wm. Greiner

I don’t always get to follow-up on a previous post, but in today’s paper - Arizona judge says dog belongs to LA woman , sums it up.

The Associated Press 3/15/2007

Wednesday, March 14, 2007


Dog Cut Out, Cocoderie LA 11/2005
all reproduction rights reserved Wm. Greiner

After Katrina , the response for rescuing pets and animals seemed to rival that of the efforts to rescue humans!

It was reported* today that a Mesa , Arizona judge will decide whether a rescued dog from New Orleans should be returned to her Louisiana owner or stay with a California couple.

*Judge to rule in Katrina dog custody fight , The Associated Press 3/14/2007

Monday, March 12, 2007

grass isn't always greener

Practice Tee, Baton Rouge LA 3/2007 from Baton Rouge Blues.
All reproduction rights reserved Wm. Greiner

The Lark in the Park, a fundraiser for New Orleans City Park* is in need of donations for their annual fund-raiser on March 23. If you are interested in donating something, please call Sue Guarisco at: 504-832-3074.

*New Orleans City Park offers 1300 acres of year-round family fun. Located in the heart of New Orleans' mid-city, City Park offers a wide menu of natural attractions, sports and recreational activity and attractions for children.

City Park's attractions including the New Orleans Botanical Garden, Storyland fairytale playground, and the Carousel Gardens Amusement Park delight visitors of all ages. In addition, several facilities are available to host any public or private event from a formal wedding to a casual picnic, a concert to a business meeting.

The hundreds of acres of park land provide enjoyment for young children playing on our playgrounds, walkers, joggers, and bicyclists winding through the park's streets and trails.City Park offers our visitors a sample of the city's riches both in fine arts and natural splendor. Home of the New Orleans Museum of Art and the largest collection of mature live oaks in the world, City Park whispers stories of duels at dawn and Creole romance beneath the surface of today's mecca of children's entertainment and leisure opportunities.

Spanning the transition in art and architecture between Neo-Classical revival and Art Deco styles, the park's bridges, buildings and outdoor sculptures are a constant source of delight to visitors.

City Park is presently continuing on its journey toward recovery from Hurricane Katrina. If you would like to view damage from the storm and the flooding that followed or contribute to our recovery through volunteering or donations, please donate now or visit our support pages to learn more about how to help.

Saturday, March 10, 2007


Bird on a Spring, Baton Rouge LA 3/2007 from Baton Rouge Blues.
All reproduction rights reserved Wm. Greiner

*The act of fleeing a major hurricane but making the destination a vacation.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

A State of Mind

Truck Graphics, Baton Rouge LA 3/2007 from the series Baton Rouge Blues
all reproduction rights reserved Wm. Greiner

Since Katrina, I have thought often how the stress of the experience has affected others. I know it affected me and I wonder , for those who have stayed in New Orleans , how they are coping with the ongoing stress.

In the Wall Street Journal today, in a section titled Journal Exchange, the paper quotes Gambit Weekly, in “Psychiatrists Displaced by Katrina Leave Void”. Before Katrina, the city had 196 psychiatrists working in the New Orleans area. After Katrina that number is down to 22!

It is quite sad to think that at a time when we need mental health professionals the most, few are to be found!

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Visions of Music show opens in Lafayette, LA

Hair Up, Jazzfest - New Orleans 5/2006
from the series 8 Days in Spring
all reproduction rights reserved Wm. Greiner

Visions of Music

William Greiner - Stuart Klipper - William Claxton

March 10-April 30, 2007

Opening reception: March 10, 2007 6-8pm

Exhibition in Cooperation with Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles

Acadiana Center for the Arts
101 West Vermilion Street
Lafayette Louisiana

Presented in the Small Gallery in conjunction with Women of the World: A Global Collection of Art, this photography exhibition highlights the places, people and culture of the Louisiana Festival and Dancing traditions. Portraits of musicians, panoramic views of cajun dance halls and still lives of the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival come together to present a unique view of the Louisiana music culture.


Bottles and Cans , Lakeview/New Orleans 9/2006
all reproduction rights reserved Wm. Greiner

The Louisiana Recovery Authority says that about 78%* of debris removal has been completed.
What does that mean?

50 million cubic yards of trash has been picked up from roadways and curbs.
30,000 flood or storm damaged structures have been identified for removal.
100% of “green waste” has been recycled.
1 million “ white goods”, I.e. refrigerators , freezers and stoves have been collected.
250,000 small engines have been recycled
600,000 electronic devices have been recycled
350,000 automobiles and 60,000 boats have been picked up.
20 million pounds of hazardous materials has been safely disposed.
And 65,000 pounds of explosives has been collected.

* FEMA Oks $14 million to set up new code, by Joe Gyan Jr., The Advocate 3/6/2007

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

The Birmingham News

Church Directory , Baton Rouge LA 8/2006 from Baton Rouge Blues
all reproduction rights reserved Wm. Greiner

Haunting memories of Katrina surface in Greiner's photographs

Sunday, March 04, 2007
James R. Nelson is visual arts critic for the Birmingham News.

Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast, with New Orleans its most famous victim. Everyone who lived through that storm has vivid memories of that experience. For William Greiner, who was forced to move away from New Orleans and chose to live in Baton Rouge, the storm triggered a pilgrimage of sorts. He has assembled a group of his photographs in a tribute to the unmemorable, the commonplace and the banal. With a humorous and often bittersweet quality, his pictures are a record of the inconsequential that now lingers and haunts our feelings about things now gone.

This photographic journey is augmented by a small catalogue titled "Baton Rouge Blues." About the size of a pocket note pad, this little booklet is a commentary on Greiner's new home base. Along with photographs of life in Baton Rouge, there are perceptive observations by Brett M. Levine, Director of the UAB Art Gallery. This little booklet is designed to be read from back to front, a gimmick that reinforces the idea of retracing steps or moving back into memory.
The main exhibition of photos from New Orleans does not deal with dramatic views of destruction or calamitous evocations of devastation. What we see is a range of pictures that start a recall process. The mundane, the ordinary and the unremarkable become an almost unbearable part of our consciousness.

Greiner takes pictures of junk shops filled with the effluvia of pop and schlock culture. Racks of old 45-rpm records, religious scenes imprinted on cheap carpets, photos of the fleetingly famous and other curiosities that proclaim that someone's junk is another's treasure. In a photographic detail he records an accidental collage created by old record album covers. These photographs become still life studies showing fragmentary glimpses of everyday experience.
One of Greiner's photos shows a view of a backyard of a house that abuts a railroad track. It captures the desire for creating a special, private place. The freight train rumbles by the cyclone wire fence, which encloses a sad space filled with aluminum lawn chairs raised on a small square of bricks. There are empty little bird houses on poles and an old rain barrel. It is a real picture that screams against reality. Greiner's pictures of tract houses that achieve a touch of uniqueness with holiday decorations show how deep the impulse for proclaiming individuality runs in everyone.

There is something fleetingly memorable about garishly excruciating bad taste. Greiner captures the irony and the humor of determined declarations about people saying to the world, "I am here, this is me." None of these photographs includes people, yet Greiner's photos are notations of life. They are fragments that give determined evidence of place and time.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Making Lemonade

Lemons and Floral Still Life, Baton Rouge LA 7/2006 from the series Baton Rouge Blues. All reproduction rights reserved Wm. Greiner.

The New Orleans Museum of Art, in cooperation with a number of French museums, has assembled the exhibition “Femme, femme, femme“. As the title suggests, the subject is women!

What makes the show unique is that many of the 100 works of art gathered from a number of French Museums, have never left or been viewed outside of their home venues! It’s a great show, a beautiful show! And even if you are a Frenchman, if you want to see this - you will need to visit New Orleans!

Friday, March 02, 2007


Poster Remnants, Magazine Street , New Orleans 2/2007
all reproduction rights reserved Wm. Greiner

The Wall Street Journal today, on it’s What’s News- cover section, reported-
“BUSH promised to help pick up the pace of recovery from Hurricane Katrina in a visit to the Gulf Coast”.
Is that really news fit to print?

Thursday, March 01, 2007


Mahalia Jackson portrait , New Orleans 2/2007
all reproduction rights reserved Wm. Greiner


The 2007 New Orleans Mardi Gras season was pegged at reaching 80%* of pre-Katrina revenues! At a time when I search hard for good news about the city, I find this something to revel in.

*The Baton Rouge Advocate, N.O. Mardi Gras revenue put at 80% , by Stacey Plaisance - Associated Press writer.