Thursday, December 26, 2013

Amid a chat about streets and classism, the Floyd County Democratic Party displays some classicism.

Classicism ... in verbiage, vacuity and veering (from the topic).

But this is to be expected from a one-party municipal patronage system that can't compel its membership to vote for its own presidential candidate.

On December 20, the Floyd County Democratic Party posted on Facebook. Kindly note the time stamps.


Floyd County Democratic Party (December 20)
It's Soap Box Friday at FCDP. What issues are on your mind? Go ahead, put it out there and let's discuss.

Roger A. Baylor (December 20)
Why is it that what's right for Main Street isn't right for Elm?

Floyd County Democratic Party (December 20)
Great discussion point Roger! We don't think anyone stated such a position. What is true is that the Main Street project has been developing for several years, reflecting multiple studies by both private and public entities. Additionally, the project was made possible by a relinquishment of right of way to the city, which also brought state dollars critical to financing the project. While we would defer to city leaders to better address plans for other streets, including the idea of one way to two way conversion, public support and planning must also develop. We hope you will continue your advocacy for your ideas in a positive fashion that adds to this dialogue and benefits all concerned.

Roger A. Baylor (December 20)
But won't displaced traffic from Main skew study results on other streets? Is there a master plan?

Floyd County Democratic Party (December 20)
Again, we'd defer to city leaders to discuss specific plans or aspects thereof, but it's important to remember that progress never occurs in a vacuum. As such, the constantly changing nature of Southern Indiana (New Albany specifically) and the development of projects (public and private) all can have an impact on studies and plans developed today. That said, it doesn't mean that we can't make informed decisions based on our knowledge of existing projects like Main Street. In fact, because we know about them, we can including information on those projects as part of any study or the development of individual plans or designs. Although most people often overlook them, it should also be said that the city publishes a number of planning documents, ranging from the Comprehensive Plan covering all of New Albany, to more localized plans involving road improvements or specific areas. These plans play a critical role in the development of our city and are used by officials to help guide actions. That's why it is important to have a sustained dialogue on the development of our community to ensure new views and ideas are incorporated as planning documents are updated while outdated or ineffective concepts are discarded. These plans are on file at the city and county for public review.

Roger A. Baylor (December 22)
All right. I've been thinking about this, so why don't we broaden the conversation? When I spoke to the mayor a few weeks back, he said that in his view, the community has no opinion about the possibility of two way street conversions -- this in spite of the 30+ businesses agreeing on its merits, or the 300 signatures once gathered by the Bookseller, or the DNA poll showing 72% in favor with 300 votes cast.

Rather, he said no one has an opinion. To me, and as I noted to him, this means he's free to do as he pleases, and do the right thing -- after all there's no opposition according to his own reckoning.

And yet, both he and others in City Hall are being tremendously, inordinately cautious. Now, let's see; if the public doesn't care either way, where's the sort of opposition that would make one hesitate? Is it the Republican Party -- which barely registers a pulse in the city?

Who could it be, if not the mayor's own Democratic Party elders? After all, in a city government controlled by the Democratic Party, if the public doesn't care and the party does, it's a done, sealed, and gone deal, isn't it? And yet, nothing happens.

You know that I'm a reliable fellow traveler given the Democratic Party's national platform. I'm not sure at the moment whether any of it ever seeps into this community. How big was Mitt Romney's majority in the city, where Democrats ostensibly outnumber Republicans by a wide percentage?

So, tell me: If the Party's for it and the public has no opinion, where could the caution-inducing pressure possibly be coming from?

The Libertarians?

Jeff Gillenwater (December 22) 
The Main Street Project is another great example of classism in New Albany, introduced, signed off on, and implemented by a Democratic majority.

Roger A. Baylor (December 23)
Somewhere, a dog barks.

Roger A. Baylor (December 25)
See what I mean?

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