Welcome Momocho: bringing excellent, innovative modern.mex to historic Ohio City

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Wed, 07/12/2006 - 03:10.


 I was sad to learn that the Fulton Street Bar and Grill was closing this Spring, as that was an Ohio City institution and great place to stop for a drink or meal in one of my favorite neighborhoods.. within a few blocks offering great locally owned, high quality dining options, from landmarks Johnny Mangos, Hecks, Great Lakes, and Parker's to relative newcomer Le Oui Oui Cafe. But as a destination and neighborhood, Ohio City can benefit from as much great culinary density as possible, and the loss of the Fulton seemed tragic. But what's new in this oldest part of town is definitely NEO and Ohio City's gain, as the fantastic "modern.mex" joint Momocho (slang for small boy, named in love of the chef/owner's son) is unique to the region and will be a major draw that is already attracting crowds in on the buzz. Momocho also comes in through a very friendly transition - the owner bought the restaurant from the owners of the Fulton, and one Fulton owner John McDonnell is well managing Momocho for the new chef/owner Eric Williams, who is busy in the kitchen making the food... well, hot!


Art of the Day: Derek Hess

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Tue, 07/11/2006 - 13:03.


No recognition of the arts as important to the world, much less Cleveland, may overlook Derek Hess, who first was widely known for powerful, angst-filled figurative music posters promoting shows he was then booking at the old Euclid Tavern, which became a fine art business for Derek, which allowed him to grow his global impact to a level few artists in Cleveland have ever achieved, all while staying in and investing in Cleveland, organizing the Strhess Tour, and Strhess Clothing, and making Gallery 1300 happen and happening (opening there this Friday, July 14th). Read more about Derek below, visit the links, and if you are smart buy some of his work while you still may.

On Lead, violent behavior, and America today

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Tue, 07/11/2006 - 11:16.

Do you realize that "The removal of lead from gasoline in 1990, regarded by many as one of the major public health triumphs of the 20th century, had an immediate impact. Between 1976 and 1994, the mean blood lead concentration in children dropped from 13.7 mcg/dL to 3.2 mcg/dL, in direct proportion to the amount of tetraethyl lead produced. One could want no clearer testimony to the efficacy of a well-conceived and consistently applied public health policy." Further, "there is a dose response relationship between lead in bones and self reported delinquent behavior in children - grounds for an arrest" and "study of prisoners in Cincinnati finds strong relationship between bone lead and number of arrests" and "statistical analysis of lead in environment vs. murder rate 21 years later is very powerful". So violent and irational behavior is an outcome of lead poisoning. Beyond the statistical proof of how this impacts society, and each of us, REALNEO's Phillip and I have seen the impact in a clinical setting, by visiting the Lead Clinic at MetroHealth and speaking with patients there, and their families, and our observations were highly disturbing.




Welcome to BioTown, USA

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Tue, 07/11/2006 - 01:36.

I let the TV run on after the BBC news tonight and Nightly Business Report came on... blah, blah, blah... until the "Last Word", on Reynolds, Indiana... a small rural town of about 500 people in 200 housholds... why on Earth was this town in the Nightly News? Because this has been declared by the governor of Indiana as BioTown, USA.

Lead Awareness March from Public Square to Mall C, and Lead Education Rally

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 07/10/2006 - 19:33.
07/19/2006 - 10:30
07/19/2006 - 12:30

July 17 – 21 is Ohio Lead Awareness Week. We would like to invite you to participate in the March for Lead Safe Living. This event is planned by the Greater Cleveland Lead Advisory Council to make people aware of the issues of childhood lead poisoning, and to let people know that we can do a better job in eliminating these problems. The Greater Cleveland Lead Advisory Council, co-chaired by the Cleveland Department of Public Health, Cuyahoga County Board of Health, and Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry, along with over fifty community partners, is committed to eliminating childhood lead poisoning by the year 2010.


Public Square and Mall C, next to Cleveland City Hall Cleveland, OH
United States

Voices and Choices speaks from Micro and Macro Economic Perspectives

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 07/10/2006 - 13:30.

As an economist, I've always been fascinated by the wealth of value our foundations provide this region, including funding arts and culture, supporting innovation in education, catalyzing the economy and leading government transformation, and most remarkably forming The Fund For Our Economic Future and funding global change leaders America Speaks to lead the Voices and Choices collaboration now poised to revolutionize our regional insight and economic development. As an open source economic developer for the region, I've had significant opportunity to work on many projects funded by local foundations that are truly transformational, including Voices and Choices, so I feel I must speak up in complete support for this initiative of America Speaks.

Fund for Our Economic Future and Voices and Choices are transforming real NEO for the best

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 07/10/2006 - 12:26.



Voices and Choices is a groundbreaking initiative of the Fund for Our Economic Future to develop a far-reaching, comprehensive regional dialog for setting a course for our region's future that will produce more jobs and create better economic opportunities for our families and businesses. Voices & Choices is also educating hundreds of thousands of people about the realities facing the regional economy.

Rebuilding Healthy Neighborhoods for Children and Families in NEO

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 07/10/2006 - 10:55.

If you have the opportunity to rebuild your city from scratch, what will be your priorities - what are the priorities of your neighborhood and neighbors? Well, in New Orleans they don't have any choice about rebuilding their city, so a diverse collaboration of planners and community leaders are using sophisticated tools and methods to make certain their neighborhoods of the future are as desirable and successful as possible... read the report summary and link in below. Note, while this is part of multi-Gulf-State regional planning, which must focus on the big picture, the study here looks are resident preferences by neighborhood and even ethnicity, so it is very granular at the microeconomic level in NOLA, and so entirely applicable to NEO. I strongly believe doing the same exercise here would offer immense value, not just in Cleveland but in every neighborhood of the region... just take the exact same method and tools as used in NOLA, work with the same team at Tulane on analyses, and we'll quickly have some real micro-community development benchmarks and targets for rebuilding our region, with concensus, from the ground up

Residents rank low crime, good street lighting as rebuilding priorities.

Low crime, good street lighting, absence of litter, walkable sidewalks/crosswalks, neighborhood grocery stores, playgrounds, affordable housing and good schools are the top priorities of New Orleans residents as they rebuild or decide whether to rebuild in the post-Katrina world, according to a survey released this week by The Prevention Research Center at Tulane University. "Low crime is a priority across the city," says Tom Farley, director of the center and chair of the department of community health sciences at the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. "Crime can be prevented with smart environmental planning, such as well-lit streets. We hope this data will result in rebuilding plans that address concerns about crime and safety."

Ingenuity Festival 2006: Seize the dates... July 13-16

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 07/10/2006 - 10:17.

Hear the sound of 1,000 Drums. Listen to live jazz, hip-hop, folk, techno, classical, rock, polka, & more. Experience opera, theater, ballet, step dancing, breakdancing, contemporary dance & more. Enjoy exhibits, concerts, poetry slams, stilt walkers, jugglers, parades, food, flowers, & activities for kids, all transformed by technology. That’s Ingenuity 2006 & it’s happening this July in The Festival Village at Prospect Ave. & East 4th St. Seize the dates, at the Ingenuity Festival website and in this book, as the festival comes alive.

Hope for rebuilding... lies in flexible, vibrant social networks formed in communities as they rebuild.

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 07/10/2006 - 08:59.


I've certainly paid much more attention to my alma mater, Tulane University, and home for many years, New Orleans, Louisiana (NOLA), since hurricane Katrina hit last year, and what I have seen is inspired regional planning combined with collaborative community building, from which we in NEO stand to learn many great lessons.

Ingenuity Festival 2006: Opening Ceremonies

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 07/10/2006 - 03:36.
07/13/2006 - 17:00

Opening Ceremonies


Ingenuity 06 will launch with a spectacular Symphony for 1000 Drums on Public Square at 5:00 pm. This Symphony, composed and conducted by internationally acclaimed Halim El-Dabh will feature drums from a rainbow of cultures and ethnicities, as well as individual drummers known in the rock and jazz communities. The goal? As Halim, puts it: “The world is filled with conflict and stress. We need to create a vibration that will change the balance to health and joy." The Symphony will be followed by the all county marching band's parade to the Mainstage. You can’t miss this! Please click here for more details.


Ingenuity Festival 2006
Public Square
Cleveland, OH
United States

Letting the " Monster" loose: Propaganda, politics, and the "old boys club" at work

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Sun, 07/09/2006 - 19:52.

The more I read about the environment and Ohio the more alarmed I become. It is not just that we are a toxic place, which we are, but that we have been a world-leader making the world toxic and continue in that leadership position today. Fpr examples, we are now the third most polluting state in America, promote very dirty coal as the future of energy, do not as a state take alternative energy seriously, and have significant issues with lead poisoning, including a long, disturbing history of causing that problem for all the world. You probably already know a major defendant in litigation over lead poisoning in America is Cleveland's own Sherwin Williams, and the top litigators for the lead and paint industry against the world are Cleveland, Ohio's Jones Day, and that we have some of the highest lead poisoning rates in the country, but would you have imagined Dayton was the world center of making lead additives for gasoline, which caused the worst worldwide distribution of toxin ever (which was the fault of General Motors), that  Kettering Laboratory on the University of Cincinnati Medical campus was named for the GM research director personally to blame, Charles F. Kettering, director of research at General Motors, and a young assistant professor of pathology at the University of Cincinnati, Robert Kehoe, corrupted the scientific understanding of lead from 1923 into the 1960s, as director of Kettering and agent of the lead industry.

Fortunately, times have changed in Cincinnati as the world expert on the dangers of lead is now Dr. Bruce Lanphear, The Sloan Professor of Children's Environmental Health and the Director of the Cincinnati Children's Environmental Health Center at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center and the University of Cincinnati. Consider the highlights below from  his recent presentation at the Cleveland City Club about lead poisoning, and then read the "Special Note on the Evolution...", as we may not move on to better tomorrows, as a society, without first understanding from where we came, and how we became who and what we are, being toxic and fooled today.

  • the average I.Q.s of American adults (and you reading this) were most certainly diminished from past lead exposure (especially if you lived in the days of leaded gas)... average I.Q in America is going up, as we eradicate lead
  • 1,000s of NEO children are exposed to hazardous levels of lead in their daily lives today
    • Low income people are most adversely impacted but children in all socio-economic classes are poisoned
    • Often affluent homeowners poison their own families by renovating while living at home, or not properly cleaning after renovations
  • Children pay for lead exposure through diminished productivity throughout life - in very high doses, victims lose their lives (there was a case of this in the past few weeks).
  • Over the past century, American society and government have not addressed lead  effectively, so Americans and our society today must accept responsibilty for the diminished capacities of untold 100,000s of victims and we must pay a $multi-biillion cost for remediation, as well as suffer lead-poison related societal problems like high crime and failing education systems, to say the least.
  • Most tragic, the overall problem was largely avoidable (Europe outlawed lead in the early 1900s), and most individual cases of lead poisoning today are avoidable. If you have or care about kids, you need to read more...

The PD has taken the lead making Case great again - who will follow?

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Fri, 07/07/2006 - 14:22.


Today's Plain Dealer has an editorial about the selection process for the new President of Case University that I find very exciting - partly because it shows great progress with Case, partly because it promotes a concept for the selection process that I initiated on realneo in March, and mostly because I agree completely with the PD position - "Lessons learned? - Case trustees' chairman is making the right moves as the search for a new president gets under way", and I support that "Linsalata also promised to allow the university community - both alumni and those on campus - ample opportunity to provide input on the search this fall."

Kenneth Lay: a convenient death or the ultimate sentence?

Submitted by Evelyn Kiefer on Fri, 07/07/2006 - 01:44.


I was saddened to hear of the untimely death of Kenneth Lay. At the young age of 64, there was so much more he could have done -- like go to prison for 20+ years. The days would have passed quickly with visits from his children and 12 grandchildren. On visits with his wife they could have reminisced (about their last $200,000 cruise). But, life is not fair. I find it difficult to feel any sympathy for Lay -- a New York Times Article and the article in the PD "Lays passing produces some mixed feelings" suggests some did feel sorry for him. Shamefully, Lay maintained his innocence and always blamed others -- rogue executives beneath him -- for the fall of Enron.  Most disturbing to me is the the self-rightiousness, bordering on insanity he reveals in this statement: "We believe that God in fact is in control, and indeed he does work all things for good for those who love the Lord," he said outside the courthouse in Houston after the verdict. Did God bless Kenneth Lay's lies? A convenient death or did God strike down Kenneth Lay? Perhaps Lay did not escape his sentence after all, perhaps he was just called before a higher judge.

Art in the Village at 5700 art opening: Natalie Lanese

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Thu, 07/06/2006 - 02:35.
07/06/2006 - 17:30
07/06/2006 - 19:30

Art in the Village at 5700, the gallery space located at Neighborhood Housing Services of Greater Cleveland (5700 Broadway Avenue) in the Slavic Village Historic District, will be hosting an art opening on Thursday, July 6th from 5:30pm to 7:30pm. 


Neighborhood Housing Services of Greater Cleveland
5700 Broadway Avenue Slavic Village
Cleveland, OH
United States

"90.3 at 9" show to focus on urban housing issues in Cleveland

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Wed, 07/05/2006 - 23:04.
07/06/2006 - 09:00
07/06/2006 - 10:00

WCPN's "90.3 at 9" show tomorrow is going to focus on urban housing issues in Cleveland. They've invited several of the folks who are part of the City Club's series on Redeveloping Cleveland. (See our website, for information on the series.)


WCPN's "90.3 at 9"
Public Radio

Steven Litt is slowing down ODOT's "Racing to design a new bridge for I-90". Hallelujah!

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Wed, 07/05/2006 - 06:06.

When I saw last week a preview for the Thursday, June 29, 2006, WVIZ "Ideas" program featured PD Arts and Architecture columnist Steven Litt and Cuyahoga County Planning Director Paul Alsenas discussing the state of ODOT's plans for a new bridge to replace the current I-90 span across the Cuyahoga River, I thought I was having déjà vu. Yes, this was an issue a year ago... even six months ago, but since then ODOT had so thoroughly railroaded the bridge and trench planning process through the public mind-space that it seemed all topics of discussion about this near $billion project had moved completely behind closed doors and forgotten. Well, it seems Litt and Alsenas have very different ideas about that, as they shared in an excellent "Ideas" this week, and as Litt writes at length in today's Plain Dealer. Be sure to read that article... and great work on Ideas, Steven and Paul!!! Read on...

Thanks for NEO's highest compliment: appreciation from Cool Cleveland x 2

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Wed, 07/05/2006 - 04:55.

I am really appreciative, this morning. After posting what was certainly the saddest news I can imagine, about the hardship my staff has suffered as a result of a lack of appreciation from my former business associate, Peter Holmes, I opened up this week's CoolCleveland and found that their crew had featured TWO postings from REALNEO. I am very touched and thankful to Thomas and his team for noticing REALNEO and taking an interest in the thoughts posted here - thank you. Please show appreciation back to CoolCleveland... if you are not a member, see what you've been missing... subscribe at CoolCleveland - all free - this is a real NEO must,  and send feedback to CoolCleveland letters at the links below, and supporting the upcoming CoolCleveland/Tech/Ingenuity party at Fat Fish Blue, July 13, and the Ingenuity Festival, as described below... but first, here's the nice write-up about REALNEO from CoolCleveland today, July 5, 2006:

Recommendations for taking this old house solar, and better...

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 07/03/2006 - 21:29.

I've seen mentioned on REALNEO and many other sites in town that there is a 1 million MgW solar challenge from the Cleveland Foundation to encourage adoption of solar power in NEO. There is mention of a solar challenge workshop on this later this month, but no details at this link. I know people interested in solar for two very distinct properties I can influence, and I have the attention of some developers as well, but none of those parties will go to workshops, and I believe the best thing would be for a professional to survey the sites and spec solutions (as innovative as possible), so I really don't know where to begin.

Certainty of conflict of interest insures Nancy Lesic's clients must be excluded from future planning

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Sun, 07/02/2006 - 08:55.

In a really fascinating development, the Plain Dealer attempts today to structure a deal whereby Cleveland citizens accept the idea that the former press secretary to the very dubious former Mayor Mike White, highest-level PR-statute Nancy Lesic is now under contract with the President of the Cleveland City Council, for $48,000, while also being PR-statute  to the Port Authority, and the Clev

A New Dean at Case

Submitted by Evelyn Kiefer on Wed, 06/28/2006 - 01:40.

You may have read in the PD a few days ago that Mark Turner, Case's Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, resigned. I don't think this story has gotten as much press, but it is big news and not just to the Case community; Case has hired a new dean of undergraduate studies... CASE NAMES NEW DEAN FOR UNDERGRADUATE STUDIES

Jeffrey Wolcowitz, who served as associate dean for undergraduate education at Harvard University and as former associate dean and chief planning officer of Harvard College, has been named dean of undergraduate studies at Case Western Reserve University. He begins his new duties August 1.

"My first order of business will be to listen and learn," said Wolcowitz, who has either been a student, faculty member or administrator at Harvard for 30 years. "It is one thing to read about a university and quite another to see its processes and culture in person and begin to participate in them."

The new dean, Wolcowitz, who was a senior lecturer in economics at Harvard, also will hold the title of adjunct professor of economics at Case. To learn more about this, go to:

In the hand of genius, NEO privilege amidst Cleveland poverty comes into perspective

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 06/26/2006 - 04:50.


It is so appropriate that inept developers and Cleveland leaders want to turn Public Square into a private land monopoly, surrounded by other private land monopolies, funded by taxpayers, sucking funding from our weak economy and struggling public schools, as this Disneyfication and WalMarting of downtown Cleveland is the ultimate betrayal of the one progressive, visionary, socially conscious and truly ingenius leader we ever have known, former mayor Tom Johnson, who sits guard over the square and community still today, with a copy of the still unrivaled economic treatise "Progress and Poverty" cast in his hand. No doubt lesser minds and spirits despise this great man and the fair and intelligent understanding he and his policy mentor Henry George had for the human condition of the industrial ages, now spanning over seven generations of failure by those who have followed and betrayed the people of NEO since... will we let corruption win over Johnson? That is the battle of Public Square, now whimpering. Are you ready to take up the fight?

For me, it is a relief just to know there was once a visionary leader of my home town, as that gives me hope we may be progressive again, some day. And that Johnson left us a roadmap, in his autobiography "My Story", and foundations for progress, in the work of his mentor, George, allows all who care to learn from experience past, before we allow those who don't care for the masses to further destroy this place before the next seven generations.

To begin putting the future in perspective, revisit 1879, consider the great enigma of our times, progress and poverty, and consider where current NEO strategies to give land monopolies and tax exepmtion to the privileged fit in with your vision of a great city for all people. Do you want a community putting privilege before poverty. Consider, from the Chapter on modern life below, "Political Economy, as at present taught, does not explain the persistence of poverty amid advancing wealth in a manner that accords with the deep-seated perceptions of man; that the unquestionable truths that it does teach are unrelated and disjointed; that it has failed to make progress in popular thought - must be due, it seems to me, not to any inability in the science when properly pursued, but to some false step in its premises, or overlooked factor in its estimates. And as such mistakes are generally concealed by the respect paid to authority, I propose in this inquiry to take nothing for granted. I propose to beg no question, to shrink from no conclusion, but to follow truth wherever it may lead. If the conclusions that we reach run counter to our prejudices, let us not flinch; if they challenge institutions that have long been deemed wise and natural, let us not turn back."

Introduction to "My Story", by Tom L. Johnson, 1911

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 06/26/2006 - 03:35.


One need only read the introduction to greatest Cleveland Mayor ever Tom Johnson's autobiography to realize this was a special person. Beyond his bringing progressive thought and practice to Cleveland and America's other great cities, back when Cleveland was "great" in proportion, he knew that streetcars could become supertrains, running 100s of miles per hour on magnets, without wheels, as is the case today in more sophisticated places than here - he built a working prototype, in 1906, in his basement, and had General Electric interested to put the technology to use but they failed to make good. So, just as Charles Brush first demonstrated the wind turbine in Cleveland, Tom Johnson first demonstrated the supertrain in Cleveland, and in neither case have progress-seceding leaders succeeded to do good with such competitive advantages. We've also failed to since address the prime enigma which Johnson confronted in his political leadership, the association of progress and poverty. Read about a great leader below, and read his autobiography on-line at Cleveland Memory, and think how your leaders of today compare.

See "the Art of the Start" from Guy Kawasaki

Submitted by Charles on Sat, 06/24/2006 - 09:29.

Part business guru, part standup commedian, Guy Kawasaki has a knack for making complex things very simple while making you laugh along the way. I first met him when he spoke at the Innovest Venture Capital Conference years ago.

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