Posts Tagged New Jersey
Marching in protest of the grotesque, this my belief of what Saturday’s Third-Party march in Red Bank, NJ represented. “Grotesque” is my word, not the word of those who organized it. I believe that “Grotesque” is much more appropriate and needs to be the rally word, let me explain.
The Green Party, Socialist Party, and Socialist Alternative Party all were represented at the event with one common theme, the environment. Speaking against the grotesque misdeeds inflicted by big oil and gas and potential new ones. Future pipelines leaking on our lands, destroying our water supply and not just in North Dakota. The effects of fracking may soon be a reality in New Jersey if proposed pipelines are approved. When one thinks of the Pinelands you do not envision a pipeline, but soon you may. 22 miles of it, carved through the “protected” land. But this is not the only potential pipeline in New Jersey. The Southern Reliability Link, as proposed would be a 30 inch pipe running 28 miles. To be carved out through North Hanover, Chesterfield, North Hanover, Upper Freehold, Plumstead, Lakehurst, ending in Manchester. Protesters have marched in the past against this “grotesque” injustice as they did this past Saturday, “No fracking pipelines” one of our chants as we snaked through the streets of Red Bank. Awareness, were you aware of the potential “grotesque” future for New Jersey? It’s Pinelands? They weren’t just chanting about North Dakota!
Awareness! I the protester was participating to bring more awareness to an issue that I did not have the complete picture. After listening to the speakers at the end point of the march I left with more information then I came with. The moral, you aren’t always speaking to the choir. A “grotesque future” for New Jersey, the corporate plan of running pipelines through our natural preserves and country side of OUR state.
Where did the “Wild” go at the Wildwood Beach? On a recent visit with my pants hiked up, I discovered there are many unstated rules at the beach. The first incident of the day, involved the life guard the “skim boarding rule” This rule applies from 10-5:30 according to the lifeguard and YOU CAN”T DO IT. I do get that maybe when there are a lot of people around it’s a bit dangerous. At roughly 10 am, with nobody on the beach? Maybe as they do with surfers a section to accommodate this FUN is in order. But swimming with a bunch of people boogie boarding between two flags is safe? So back to our beach camp went the skim board.
Deciding on another activity we grabbed a Nerf football and went to waters edge for some fun diving into the water to catch the ball. This was the plan but while warming up with some throws back and forth our resident David Hasselhoff returned with yet another rule. “You can’t throw the ball here because the tide is coming in” The tide? seriously? “Yes the tide”. The Wildwood “NO ball playing near the water rule when the tides coming in” The lifeguard did give us the option of going to the back of the beach where the sand is soft and 10 thousand degrees, we respectfully declined. We also didn’t attempt the activity once the tide was in.
We were not going to chance another encounter so reluctantly we left all our beach shovels, buckets, balls, etc, in the bag and simply went into the water. But we still had fun! As one of us went to have some fun going through a wave we let them know “No breaking the wave” Or when one of us decided on picking up a piece of seaweed we warned, there may be a rule against that! All was met with laughter! We did have fun despite the lifeguard, so SCREW HIM!
The Wildwood Beach offers mile long beaches, and many rules that are not stated on any sign. But how could they tell you all the rules on a sign? Wouldn’t it block the view of the ocean? A name change is definitely in order.
Should state workers unions be pushing for a ballot question to fund pensions? If the NJEA and the rest of the state unions haven’t figured it out yet, their pensions would be doomed. Why? Lets start with the single most important piece of information, these workers are in the minority when it comes to pensions. With that well-known fact, why would you be pushing for a ballot question? Do you actually think the voters of New Jersey will say “YES”????
The NJ Public Pension Fund is in the red $44 billion. The public unions in a desired ballot question want it balanced by 2020, paid in quarterly payments. Nearly $15 billion per year if the ballot question became a reality and was approved by voters. Our $15 billion figure does not include payments for normal contributions that need to be made as well in pension years 2017 thru 2020. CWA NJ State Director Hetty Rosenstein has called the pension funding crisis “a moral issue.” Senate President Steve Sweeney has taken some heat recently from the unions over the ballot question. But Sweeney has it right: ““The easy thing is just to put it up and if it fails, say I gave you what you wanted. It died, it’s on you” The voters of the state have given us 2-terms with Governor Christie which should be enough to tell you where their minds are at. Yes his poll numbers and approval rating are in the toilet. Fundamentally though, voters are against tax increases and they will be against any tax increase with YOUR pension payments tied to it. To push for a voter referendum is SUICIDE for funding your pension system. This is being said by someone who supports funding your promise of a pension. The pockets of the NJEA are deep but they aren’t deep enough to sway enough voters to say yes. The bottom line is the majority of voters do not have a traditional pension; what makes you think they’ll protect yours?
Do you think they need to figure out a different path to funding?
Governor Hamburger is out and about trying to push the proposed 23 cent increase in the gasoline tax as good for New Jersey. Raising taxes and claiming overall it is a reduction is just plain nonsense. If you haven’t heard his claim it is this, “the average driver will pay about a $100.00 a year more in gasoline taxes. But will save $400 a year with the 1 % reduction in the sales tax.”
I am not sure where he is getting his numbers from but lets imagine beyond the compact car. My truck has a 25 gallon tank. So with each fill up of say 24 gallons each week will cost me $5.25 more, $23 a month more or $276.00 more a year. Christie misses the mark by a $176.00. Where he pulls the $400 savings from the sales tax I would sure love to see as it is incrementally moved down 1%. But lets take this beyond the “average” taxpayer. The people who drive for a living or the people who own landscaping businesses, how much will this .23 cent increase impact them?
SCREAM NO! If Governor Hamburger properly funded the Transportation Fund we again would not be relying on the little guy (US) to pay the bills. “And we promise this time the money will go where its suppose to go.” Governor Christie is blowing some hot air trying to sell this pile of steaming crap.
Is it possible that Governor Christie will be labeled a racist by the end of his second term? His recent school funding proposal may just achieve it. School funding in New Jersey is currently a weighted system that has 30 years of history and Supreme Court backing. Despite this, Christie is attempting to deliver a campaign promise some six and a half years old, lower property taxes. Under Christies plan, $6,599 will be allocated for each and every pupil in the state, K-12. So a student in Haddonfield NJ with a median income of $86,477 will receive the same as a student in Camden NJ with a median income of $26,000.
Haddonfield’s population, The racial makeup of the borough is 95.23% white. By contrast Camden’s, population is roughly 83% non-white. Christie’s plan is an attack on the poor and subsequently in many cases minorities. The juxtaposition of these two locations is just one of many throughout the state. School funding and geography, under the Christie plan the rich will continue to get richer. Christie to be labeled a racist? This proposal is a disgusting attack on the poor and middle-class at minimum.