Wednesday, October 17, 2018

WE SHOULD BE DEPRESSED



    It Has been too long since I have posted a blog. I could blame the weather-rain, clouds, lack of sunshine etc.; or too many doctor’s appointments, or continued computer problems. 
   All are true, but perhaps it has been due to a form of depression caused by happenings locally and nationally, compounded by an impression that most people are not interested in preservation of our way of life; our Democracy and civil rights.

     Yes, the driving force today seems to be “if it is not financial gain for me, I could care less”. Autocracy on government be it local, county, state, or federal is accepted with only scattered complaints.

     POTUS has an admiration of strongmen: Vladimir Putin in Russia. Xi Jinping in China. Rodrigo Duterte in the Philippines. Kim Jong Un in North Korea and believes that he can be like them here. He has a Republican Congress that caters to him.

     Now he acts as if the Saudis claims about Mr. Khashoggi’s apparent murder is the truth, any other reports are fake news.  But I agree with the Washington Post; “The only way to determine the truth about what happened to Mr. Khashoggi is to establish an independent international commission. “The Saudis cannot investigate themselves,” wrote David Kaye, the special rapporteur on freedom of expression, and Agnes Callamard, the special rapporteur on summary executions, adding that “the Saudi responsibility seems practically irrefutable.”   

     I have lived in Plainfield the best part of 98 years. It is so sad to see what was once “The Queen City of Central New Jersey’ dying as a desirable place to live. 
    Today I read in Dan’s blog that after 128 years First Unitarian Society of Plainfield is closing its building and leaving the community. It is following the footsteps of such institutions; Muhlenberg Medical Center, The YWCA and I believe the YMCA is planning to close. The Jewish places of worship, as well as the Jewish Center. All the stores; Tepper’s, Rosenblum’s, Bamberger’s, national chains that made Plainfield the place to come and spend Thursday nights. Four busy banks in the downtown area have disappeared.

    Administration claims great progress when a “gym” opened! Yes, redevelopment has been mainly planned and a few completed apartment projects that will place additional tax loads on the remaining citizens.

   Even Dan seemed disturbed by an Administration plan to disband employee Civil Service in favor of a plan that would favor patronage and nepotism. We can expect that from a government that disregarded the charter and recommendations of a commission in order to establish its own departmental structure with more potential patronage positions.

    Like Trump and his puppet Republican Congress we have Mapp and a rubber stamp Council.

   We do have election in about five weeks. We have a choice between an in-place Campbell ticket and a Mapp endorsed one with a few outliers. We have a choice between an Independent and a machine appointee for Councilor at large. We have a choice between a tainted incumbent or a so-called uncommitted Republican who does favor woman’s right of choice for Senator.

    I hope citizens do turn out and vote for what they wish to stand for.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

ADDENDUM TO LAMENT




  Perhaps I should clarify my concerns about the South Ave redevelopment project. I must admit that I was unaware of the complete time line. But that raises a further question; who requested and why did the council approve the need for redevelopment of the “East South Ave area”?  Was this from Economic Development?  No one should question the need for the north side of South Ave. to be redeveloped? But why not include t he whole area to Leland Ave instead of stopping short of some drive ins?
  What is the rational for the selection of the area on the north side?   
  Also, how realistic are the 11 possible uses for the redeveloped area?
  Why would a Child Care Center help revitalize Plainfield when the Hope facility is in the proximal vicinity? Why another bank that required street parking or a parking lot? Why another gas station with one at each end of the impact block? Why more small apartments when there are already unfinished projects in the city?     Check all 11 suggestions and judge how many are realistic.  The direct train to NYC is at best a decade away; will the land lie fallow until there may be need for residencies?
 The argument that this is a “non-condemnation “project is not valid since what will result is a variation of the old block busting. If one owner wishes to sell a property it may isolate the neighbor who will face a devastated area.
   I have no objections to proposed redevelopment projects that are realistic in scope and area. If Plainfield would look to an area that needs redevelopment, why not our outdate“downtown”?       
  Westfield successfully reinvented itself by becoming an open mall with high class food centers. Plainfield once the Queen City has no stores or restaurants (except the three on East South Ave.) that would bring in people.
  I know this is rambling, but why can’t I get honest answers to questions?