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August 29, 2013

Comments

Brandon

How is Cory Booker's Senate campaign of "central importance to all Americans"?

If you're still concerned about radioactive water leaking into the Pacific from the Fukushima plant, I'd like to recommend again the recent book Nuclear Roulette: The Truth About the Most Dangerous Energy Source on Earth (Chelsea Green).

Hattie

Brandon: It is an absolute disgrace that Newark should still be a pariah city, stagnating within an easy drive of Manhattan. The concerns of Newark need to be front and center in this country. It is symptomatic of the way we have divided this country into rich and poor areas. Instead of standing their ground and saving Newark, the white people left and stranded the blacks. Phillip Roth grew up there, and like his peers, left the town to rot.
Look at the Big Island. We have those big resorts in Kona where people come for fancy vacations, and we have Puna, which is getting progressively poorer and more dangerous. I just read about a woman who was subdued by several officers yesterday in the parking lot at Island Naturals. Her blood was all over the place. She had gone mad on some kind of drug.
In spite of the civic mindedness of many people down there and their resourcefulness, the social equilibrium is perilous, and it's hard to imagine things improving for them. The pariahs down there are the druggies, a lot of them women, very neglected people, lots of domestic violence and mental illness. I fear that middle class Puna residents may give up on Puna the way the white middle class gave up on Newark. This is not a far-fetched analogy. The Big Island is a microcosm of American society.
I would read the book you recommend, but it would probably depress me right now. Of course it's a dangerous technology that has been foisted on us by the nuclear industry.

Brandon

I was thinking of the Island Naturals in Hilo, but it must be the one in Pahoa.

"Look at the Big Island. We have those big resorts in Kona where people come for fancy vacations, and we have Puna, which is getting progressively poorer and more dangerous."

Don't forget the $26 million pleasure dome in Ninole featured on the front page of yesterday's paper. I went to Kona the other Friday and it was huge. Puna and Kau both are huge and underserved regions. I'd like to see a community college in the area, and definitely one or two full hospitals. Like Kona and post-1960 Hilo, most of the development in Puna and Kau happened after car travel became the norm. So everything is sprawled out, and if you don't have a car or access to one, you're out of luck. I'd also like to see some of the subdivisions redesigned around a central point, like a village square. It might improve walkability and social cohesion.

Hattie

Yes, well the richie riches are up there too, with their crazy amounts of money and loony ideas.

M.E.

In D.C. we have the phenomenon of black flight: middle-class black persons fleeing the city for the suburbs. There's a plethora of column inches devoted to why this has happened, but I dislike reading most of it.

Hattie

M.E. I saw this happening in New Jersey already when I lived there in the late 60's. Nuff said. Not for me to make any remarks about.

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