Thursday, August 09, 2007

All Politics Is Local

It was Neighborhood Night Out on Tuesday, where the sociable among the locals meet at someone's front yard with food and drink and get to know each other a bit. Hizzoner the mayor was there (he lives next door) and I got a chance to talk to many of the people I see as I stroll by on my nightly constitutionals. The big buzz this year was the "spruce up the city campaign" or what ever it's called. I've been doing my part, God knows, with shingles, caulk and paint. The couple hosting the event were "busted" for not having their 1 inch wide molding painted (which surrounded three windows.) The windows themselves had been newly replaced and the couple were waiting to finish some other projects before doing all the painting at one time. "Court Action or Fines are possible!" said the notice. Someone at City Hall (but not the mayor, thank goodness!) has a problem of perspective.

This is in a State whose leaders (who carried this city in recent elections) are so parsimonious as to deny a gas tax increase (equivalent to about the price of one cup of coffee per week per motorist) which would have provided enough money to have prevented motorists from crashing to their deaths into the Mississippi River.

But that was last week's news. The school bus full of kids missed becoming a fiery inferno, or being squished under tons of concrete, or coming to rest on the bottom of the river by a second or two. That was "lucky." There has been money appropriated by Congress to replace the fallen bridge, but a proposal for a national gasoline tax increase to prevent this from happening again and again, is already being opposed vigorously. The Alaskan "bridge to nowhere" is proceeding apace, for about the same amount of money. A special session in the State has been proposed to deal with "transportation issues." I'm not holding my breath on any results from that one. But let a few strips of wood sit for a few days without paint- that kind of negligence we'll dispatch with prejudice!

By Professor Batty


Blogger Sharon Spotbottom said...

Bill Moyers did a show on earmark reform in congress. the bridge to nowhere was mentioned:

Blogger Professor Batty said...

... I did manage to catch that segment, pretty timely in light of what happened the very next week...

Blogger Sharon Spotbottom said...

My thoughts exactly!

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