Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Congratulations to King Georges

John Georges 'extremely proud' to own The Advocate

I'm actually excited about this.
Georges said if The Advocate could double the number of subscribers in New Orleans, the newspaper would “be in great shape.” He said there are opportunities in the city because The Times-Picayune was “wounded and confused.”
That's a pretty good assessment, I must concur.  Approaching almost a year after the Newhouse cull I think most folks would agree that the TP/NOLA is a shell of its former self.  For all the innovative, revolutionary changes Matthews promised the truth is that while the NOLA website has improved to some extent, the quality of news gathering has diminished significantly.  That's not a knock on the reporters, it's a knock on the management.    

I would hate to see him in public office but the one thing I would say of King Georges is that he doesn't half-ass do anything.  I think he will take The Advocate to a higher level, whatever that level may be.  

In the meantime, I think The Lens has already bumped it up a couple notches since this time last year.  More and more I find myself turning to The Lens for hard news instead of NOLA or other local MSM entities.  I've noticed that trend on Facebook posts as well.

Also, I'm somewhat puzzled at this.  Newhouse scaled back the publication of the TP to three days a week, cut their staff, but now they are going to launch an entirely new publication to fill in the days they aren't publishing the TP?  Is that their way of saying they fucked up but they don't want to admit it?  They took an established, loved brand in the city, pissed on it, and now they are going to launch an entirely new brand?  

I think King G's assessment is spot on...wounded and confused.  I don't know if their bottom line has gotten better but I do know the quality of their product hasn't and it seems like they're chasing their own tail with TPStreet. 

Anyway...let the games begin...    

33 comments:

Doug Handshoe said...

I do not share your enthusiasm about the guy who ended up with most of Carlos Marcello's business empire owning a major area daily newspaper. His business association reek like a dead skunk on Highway 49 during the summer in Magee.

For all the money Tom Benson has thrown into Fox 8, it exists to advance his self interests. It's not so much what they cover because they run with the MSM herd, its all the gaps in coverage when it involves Benson's business buds that are most troubling.

I'm not expecting much outta a John George owned Advocate except what you see at Fox 8.

There is no public interest in the advancement of entrenched pecuniary self interest.

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

I'm excited about it because it will be pissing match and that can only be a good thing.

I understand what your sentiment and maybe I'm setting the bar too low but I think it could be a good thing.

And it can't get much more benign than what it is right now, The Advocate.

Anonymous said...

Can I say I love you guys?

I love Doug's "reeking like a dead skunk" and willingness to talk about who got the pieces of an evil empire.

I love Jason's "it will be a pissing match, and that can only be a good thing."

Conflict, competition, a "bring out your dead" approach to secrets, lies, and goats: you guys are fun to read.

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

And Doug I still don't understand your favor towards Matthews. The TP has clearly diminished in its investigative efforts since he took the helm.

Anonymous said...

George's purchase of the Advocate stinks real bad! This guy is getting ready for another political run, perhaps in the City. Landrieu owns NOLA.com, so naturally buy one yourself and enter the market.
Let the games begin.
Anyone who believes the media and their reporting has their head in a hole.

Ricardo said...

Anon 9:59- I doubt that Georges will challenge Landrieu. It will be an Adelsonesc waste of money. Maybe in 5 years when term limits kick in. And if his paper is a bought bully pulpit that is not overwhelmingly for the public good he will still not have a chance.

Anonymous said...

Expect the Advocate to go after the Landrieu administration will full fury. There is no love between Georges & Landrieu. The Advocate was a horrible paper to begin with actually it is worse than Nola.com because the Manships were politically entrenched with the politicians too. I'm no Georges fan but he did make one very intelligent hire and that was bringing on Peter Kovacs. Kovacs was a brilliant hire by Georges.

I agree with both Dough and Jason though but the real winner will be the other media outlets who will now have to up their game because there is competition in New Orleans.

Anonymous said...

Rumors popping all over the place that Gordon Russell is joining the Advocate. Anyone else hearing that?

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

Anon @ 12:18...yes to all. The the hush that has fallen over local MSM in respect to the Landrieu admin. will undoubtedly be lifted.

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

Russell going to The Advocate would be a potentially mortal wound for the TP.

Anonymous said...

I was informed by a good reporter for the TP that he could not complete the story because management had put the kibosh on OT. So, today's news became tomorrow's. That is a complete disservice to the community.

I agree with your assessment Jason that the TP's "tabloid" announcement is a nice way of saying "mulligan," or we screwed up. They will pay dearly for their abandonment of the community that so heartily supported them through good and bad.

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

"OT" ? Help me out there.

Anonymous said...

overtime.....

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

Ahhh! I understand now. I thought OT was a specific story they deep sixed

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

Although that would be an interesting mechanism to shut a story down, huh?

Mafia Investigator said...

Handshoe,

Your allegation of Georges owning a Mafia business empire (with the insinuation that Georges might be mobbed up) is fascinating.

Inquiring minds would greatly appreciate a more complete explication of such claims. A search of Slabbed did not provide any additional enlightenment.

Anonymous said...

Mafia Investigator, it's all out there in full view. You think Georges is so rich just from selling honey buns and Marlboros? One video poker machine results in, on average, $50,000/yr. Why would the Marcellos give this up or are they using a front man/business partner? Search previous AZ's (see below):

http://www.nola.com/news/index.ssf/2008/02/john_georges_gets_back_into_ga.html

http://www.theamericanzombie.com/2010/02/typical.html

"... The Video Poker industry really put John Georges financially in the Big League. It gave him they capital to buy out many competitors in the coin operated machine business accross southeast louisiana. He has acquired, AMA Distributors, which owned Lucky Coin Amusement, he bought A Ace vending which was one of the biggest vending companies in Louisiana, he even acquired the reminance of the old Marcello family business, Jefferson Music Company/ Master Video Poker, seems like Georges is the new boss of New Orleans, only problem he is not Italian. ..."

http://www.nola.com/politics/index.ssf/2010/01/post_261/5520/comments-6.html

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

Even aside from video poker which is a legitimate indiustry, Georges has had dubious business dealings and partners...particularly in Mexico.

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

Having said that I wouldn't ascribe the "mafia" moniker to Georges

Doug Handshoe said...

I do not favor Mathews per se as much as I favor the institution. Growing up in the 1970s in Waveland I saw multiple papers most everyday, the Sun Herald and the Times Picayune / States Item.

We are creatures of habit and our media consumption reflects that. It is not that I dislike The Advocate or the Lens by way of example but in order to break habits where the scarce commodity is time to consume information there is only one way to do that.

I do it on Slabbed and you do it too here. It is why we frequent each others web sites the "it" being information/perspective not available elsewhere along with accurate reflections of informed public opinion.

I'm certainly not implying the examples I gave do not do that in their own way but when the ground being trodden is duplicated in numerous locations that habit thing becomes key IMHO.

All that said Mathews is from here on the Gulf Coast and all things being equal I favor Coasties.

Kevin said...

If NOLA is so short on money and resources, why did they open an office in downtown Baton Rouge?

Mafia Investigator said...

All out there in full view? Sure, it's in full view he has a bunch of video poker machines. How does that prove anything, let alone a Mafia connection?

The only tenuous link is buying a company described as linked to Marcello. If there were an actual mob connection, don't you think the State Police licensing process would have caught that?

Georges may be sleazy, he may be a racist, he is likely an asshole, and he's not suitable to be governor. But you'll have to do a little better if you want to nail him as being mobbed up.

Don't think I'm dismissing the idea. I just want to see some actual evidence, rather than vague claims with no serious substantiation.

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

As I stated, I would not use that moniker in connection with Georges but if I was sleuthing it I would focus more on the import side of his business than he video poker and vending machine side. Remember, vending machines and video poker machines are a great way to funnel cash from other various activities.

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

Also, as Doug will probably tell you, take a look at how many JP council members and public officials has ownership in video poker venues in one way or another, e.g., truck stop casinos.

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

Have...sic....on phone

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

And then...let's talk about real estate.

More importantly...let's talk about counter letters.

Then let's talk about River Birch.

Then.....well....then....sir, I leave you to your own devices.

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

Oh shit...I didn't even mention the Capellas, JP tax assessments and King G did I?

Doug? You care to chime in there?

I'd throw the LSED in but that would just get way to complicated.

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

too...sic

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

So at the bottom of this 28 comment post....what are you going to call me?

Answer? A conspiracy theorist?

Just remember I never used the word, "Mafia".

I'll never use it because I don't even know how to define it. I know that there are "cabals" of men who illegally shift money and power in their direction but I don't know if the semantic construct, "mafia", is accurate to describe these power structures.

And there are competing cabals so it gets more confusing the more you dig into it. I think it really just comes down to how public officials are leveraging the power they have.

At this point, I really don't know the difference between laissez faire capitalism and an outright kleptocracy. I am disillusioned and disheartened. I can't really even talk about it anymore because so few people understand. More importantly...so few people even want to hear it.

What I've consigned myself to is just trying to find the things that work...the things that help. I'm trying to find those things and nurture them....and ruthlessly protect them.

What is "mafia"? I don't know. Is it a racial contstruct? A genetic construct? A socio-economic construct? I have no idea. I honestly don't care.

I just know that if democracy is going to work, somebody has to pay attention. That's all I got.

Anonymous said...

A background on the New Orleans mafia will clear the air on a lot of this. The Carolla crime family which has controlled New Orleans since the late 1800's is the most unique in the world. They are the oldest Italian syndicate in America. This is interesting because they operate outside of "the 5 families of New York" In 1966 there was a leadership dispute with in the New Orleans mob. Carlos was being challenged by the Carolla heirs to reclaim the seat at the head of the table. You see Carlos was never supposed to be boss. His leadership was intended to be temporary when Silver Dollar Sam Carolla was deported. The problem is the Carolla's waited til 1966 to challenge him and the meeting was interupted by a New York policeman and all members were arrested. A result of this meeting and the New RICO statutes introduced by Attorney General Bobby Kennedy kept Carlos from developing "made men". Very few members of the family were "made" after 1966. For the next 35 years a virtual take over of New Orleans business and politics occurred. Once the mob submersed itself into legitimate business in the community it made unlikely bed fellows. The mob moved out of the street and into the board room. It allowed the street crime to become obsolete. So on the surface it seems like they don't exist. Now there are some who will argue that the mob is still here and run by a offshoot of the Colombo family. I disagree. I don't think the old New Orleans guard would ever let this happen. I think they are just letting the Colombos do the dirty work, while the real bosses sip LOUIS XIII and use Gulf Coast businessmen to front the rest and move the money. I am not claiming that anyone mentioned in your posts is in the mafia, just educating some of the new comers to how this family developed and adapted to avoid competition and law enforcement.

Dambala - Jason B. Berry said...

So Carlos is a "self-made" man?

Anonymous said...

Please don't confuse the Times Picayune with NOLA.com. The Times Picayune had its throat slit and it died several months ago.

NOLA.com is probably the worst media outlet in the entire United States. Hell its not a media outlet its an infomercial outlet that aspires to be a online bulletin board. It should have just bought tigerdroppings.com instead of half-assing its bulletin board/forum business model.

Alexa shows that NOLA.com once enjoyed a readership website traffic ranking of above 2000 and the website traffic ranking has dropped, not just dropped a little but dropped off significantly so much so that it now is boasting a 12k website traffic ranking all taking place over the course of twenty months.

Anonymous said...

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/13/business/media/in-new-orleans-times-picayunes-monopoly-crumbles.html?emc=eta1&_r=0