Get out and Vote

Here’s a plea for voters to go to the polls and push the button for somebody. Anybody.

It’s courtesy of Shelby County Commissioner Mike Ritz, who we think, at the end of the day, quite frankly has a way with words. (There are a few Mike-isms in that sentence).

He told his Facebook followers if you don’t early vote or vote on Aug. 5, “you lose your right for the next four years to complain in person, by slow mail or email or Twitting or Facebook about anything to do with County government or state government or federal government. For some of us that is like pulling our tongue out and freezing our brain. So no excuses, VOTE. Thanks.”

More jobs in health care

An American Medical Association online article about job growth in the health care industry includes an interview with Stuart Wilkinson of Memphis-based UT Medical Group Inc. Wilkinson said the practice is hiring and so are other providers across the nation.

Read the article:

The response to “Harold, call me” that never was

For all you political junkies out there –

In his soon-to-be-released memoir, More Davids than Goliaths, former Memphis congressman Harold Ford Jr. writes that he drew up a plan to answer the infamous “Harold, Call Me” ad run against him during his unsuccessful 2006 Senate run against Bob Corker.

As Bill Dries writes in Tuesday’s Daily News, Ford considered coming back with a TV ad of his own starring Gov. Phil Bredesen and former Gov. Ned McWherter, with the two governors giving Ford their stamp of approval.

Bredesen agreed to do the ad. McWherter didn’t.

Read more of Dries’ report on Ford’s new political memoir here.

Elvis’s piano up for auction

Anyone with a $1 million or more to throw around could be the new owner of Elvis Presley’s grand piano. That’s how much the piano is estimated to sell for at auction, according to a Reuters article. The auction will be in Memphis next month. Read the article:

Preserving Memphis’ Heritage

It’s getting to be a familiar battle in Memphis’ civic discussion – the tradeoff between saving old buildings (whether they have historic value or not) and when it makes sense to allow new investment and development to take their place.

Frequently at the center of that push-and-pull is June West, executive director of Memphis Heritage. Talk to her often enough, and you’re bound to hear her insist some version of this simple declaration: “We’re not anti-development.”

This week’s cover story in The Memphis News puts West and her role with Memphis Heritage in the context of several recent high-profile development battles. West and her group lately seem to be on a roll, with their opposition forcing Chick-fil-A to preserve the wall of an older building where the restaurant built a Midtown restaurant; rebuffing a grocery store-themed redevelopment of Overton Square; and preventing a drug store from redeveloping a church building at the intersection of Union and Cooper.

Although that last battle is not entirely finished, as the story points out.