I‘m just beginning to get into the holiday spirit. And what better way to get the mood on than to hang out under the mistletoe.
Glad the election is finally behind us? Well, buck the fu>k up, kiddies. There’s a whole other election coming real soon like: The Battle for City Council.
Let’s get the polling started, shall we?
Do you want to see the Susquehanna River dammed at Wilkes-Barre?
Display Poll Results
As is customary in Luzerne County, vote early and often. And no tossing off in the voting booths. Jeez!
What do I think?
|An attempt by nine counties in northeastern Pennsylvania to encourage Manhattan-based financial services companies to set up business continuity facilities has not yet signed any clients and is competing with already-existing installations in New Jersey.|
What? No Wall Street West? By the way, how’s that water-jet technology thing working out? Seen many new high-paying jobs popping up lately? And what of that kick-ass cargo airport of his? Oh, and let’s not forget about damming a river dominated by poop and acids. Paul Kanjorski is quite the idea man. Unfortunately, his ideas are indistinguishable from the many poop deltas that form so often on the river’s shoreline.
Wall Street West ain’t exactly taking the Big Apple by storm? Really? No foolin’. Well, that doesn’t quite jive with the optimistic assessment Kanjorski was selling but a week before his recent reelection challenge. Give this con job posted on the congressman’s Web site a week before the November election a once over with all four of your eyeballs.
Before the election:
|"We have received a very enthusiastic response from Wall Street for our recently announced plans to create a new financial district in northeast Pennsylvania. We have heard from major financial and healthcare companies about their interest in relocating to our financial district, attracted by the knowledge that 'we've got their back' as we have planned carefully for their company's needs at this new site. In Wall Street West, we have created a new model for business continuity - one that has received the blessing of key industry and governmental representatives," Mr. Simon said.|
After the election:
|Attendees, some of whom asked not to be identified, said in general that the project was interesting -- just not for them. They expressed concern about a number of aspects, ranging from the square footage the developer was looking to lease to a current lack of transportation and communications infrastructure. Other attendees indicated that they already felt they had enough redundancy in their existing setups not to need it.|
Before the election:
|"Wall Street West is a concept that we have been working on diligently since September 11. Northeastern Pennsylvania is suitably located for backup facilities because it is less than 125 miles from Manhattan, and is located in a different watershed and separate electrical grid. I am pleased that so many local and state officials, as well as community and business leaders in our region, have realized the benefits of Wall Street West. Our area is fortunate to have businessmen like Larry Simon, who took the seed of our vision and planted it with his investment in the Poconos," Congressman Kanjorski said.|
After the election:
|However, this may make some users wary, said Cal Braunstein, an analyst at Robert Frances Group Inc. in Westport, Conn. "A lot of people have crossed Pennsylvania off their list because of nuclear power," either because of concerns about a terrorist attack or another Three Mile Island nuclear accident, he said.|
So, to be somewhat kind, what you have here is a case of crass manipulation. Or, to be much more unkind, what we have on our hands is yet another one of Kanjorski’s La La Land schemes about to go down for the count. But fret not. The Democrats are in control now, and every single thing is going to get noticeably better in a big, big hurry. Correct?
Wall Street West? Yeah, and Disney is going to build a $200 million theme park at Coal Street, right after the downtown spaceport opens.
If you voted for Paul Kanjorski during this recent electoral dust-up, then you surely know what being a chump feels like.
Wall Street West? Yeah, in your freaking dreams.
What’s next? Silicon Valley East?
Oh, be real. Not just anybody gets invited to Sue Henry’s electronic lair. And not just anybody happens to know just about everybody on the local scene.
Come to think about it, quite a while back Sue made some mention of me--Moi--appearing on her talk show to discuss blogging or something. At the time in question, I’m not really sure if there was a local blog that touched upon local politics other than mine, let alone, many blogs at all. I remember saying something like: And what would we do? Beat up on McGroarty some more?
I just don’t think I would have made for a good interview being that we live in an area with an aging population that has very little interest in the internet other than checking on the previous day‘s lottery numbers. Although, she did say I could provide my own bumper music. Crashing bar chords from the Sex Pistols, anyone? Some Specimen, perhaps? Damn! I should have gone for it. Nancy would have just stood on the console and sh*t. Oh well.
The Jints. Ah, you just had to bring that up. Talent wise, this is clearly a Super Bowl caliber team. And when you’ve got the players and it just isn’t happening, then who should take the brunt of the responsibility? I’m thinking the Jints need a change at the top. Oh, and they need to unceremoniously dump Plaxico, that moping slacker fu>k.
It was nice to meet you as well. But I do regret not working the room a bit more. Sorry, tough work weeks can do that to me.
Wifey keeps raggin‘ my ass because she feels the new businesses in the downtown are geared towards the college kiddies. And, she keeps bemoaning the fact that we haven’t seen any new retail concerns open where she can fritter away the hours and shop at. And she’s not alone in that respect. Plenty of people have expressed similar sentiments, at least, to me.
First off, we need to have realistic expectations. We’re not likely to attract what we’d call a traditional department store, or a “big box“ for that matter. In fact, Wilkes-Barre is only one of three Pennsylvania cities with a full-scale department store--Boscov’s--in it’s downtown, with the other two cities being Pittsburgh and Philadelphia.
What we are likely to see spring up is very specialized stores owned and operated by local yokels such as ourselves. And before said yokels are going to pony up any money of their own, they need to see tangible proof that the foot traffic in the downtown has increased in an appreciable sense. And how would they get that proof? Well, they’d wait to see the six-month attendance figures from Wilkes-Barre Movies 14, the downtown’s new anchor.
And the attendance figures are? Well, the quote is: “Better than anticipated.”
I think another legitimate way to gauge what’s going on in the downtown is to look at the financial reports from the Wilkes-Barre Parking Authority (Rob? Care to help me out, here?) since the theater opened. If parking receipts are way up…well, there you go. And from I’ve seen of the Central Lock on a near daily basis, the receipts have to be way up.
The Chamber folks keep saying they are in negotiations with prospective businesses, and with the “better than anticipated” numbers coming from Movies 14, we should be seeing some announcements being made soon enough.
But, patience is a virtue, and from what I’ve seen, the long-frazzled residents of this city have not been in a very virtuous mood of late. Truth be told, I can’t blame most of them for their healthy skepticism. We’ve been subjected to bad news for so long, I don’t think most of us know how to react to good news except with doubts. It’s not really our fault, though. The people at fault are the one’s who got themselves elected for the past three decades and then sat on their greased thumbs.
Anywho, we are rapidly approaching an important waypoint of sorts, by which the brick-and-mortar progress in the downtown should start to accelerate.
What you’re about to realize is that good things can and do happen in Wilkes-Barre.
Listen in as some stooge lights up Jimmy Carter on C-SPAN.
My opinion of Jimmy Carter could not get any lower unless he showed up somewhere sporting an Eagles jersey. But…racist? Anti-Semite?
One more thing. Take a look at the “Sterling Tower” slideshow on the front page. That sucker will be histoire very, very soon.