Wednesday, October 18, 2006

More on road projects and politics

One thing I forgot to mention in yesterday's post: the highway construction zones usually come more than one at a time and are usually spaced out several miles apart, so if you think you've been clever by jumping off the highway and onto parallel secondary roads, and then decide to hop back on the highway after several miles, there is a very good chance that you will simply slam right into the next construction zone. This morning I hit three zones: an unannounced zone just past Nanticoke (I specifically listened to the traffic reports this morning, and this wasn't mentioned), a sign inspection near Scranton (which I got around by taking the exit I should've taken yesterday), and then maintenance to the on-ramp back onto the highway! To top things off, the lead car in our parade of cars trying to get back onto the highway decided it would be a good idea to come to a complete stop on the on-ramp, forcing every car behind him to deal with the problem of going from zero to highway speeds as they merged back onto the interstate.

It's not just the highways that have suddenly turned into obstacle courses of construction zones. Michelle over at did a post more than a week ago on the joy of trying to navigate through Wilkes-Barre, particularly for a new mother.

So, what's the deal? Did someone find a big pile of use-it-or-lose-it road repair funds somewhere that needed to be disposed of before the end of the year? Is somebody trying to look good for election day by spreading a lot of filthy lucre in the form of road projects? Or, conversely, is someone trying to hinder voter turnout by simultaneously rendering all roads impassable?

Whatever the case, I hope things get wrapped up before Winter. Then the ice and cold and road salt and snowplows can see how much damage they can do.

Meanwhile, in an abandoned warehouse across town...
Bernie O'Hare from Lehigh Valley Ramblings has relayed the fascinating fact that all four of the Pennsylvania Green candidates who are on the Congressional ballot got there with the financial assistance of members of the Republican Party! (This doesn't even count the failed ballot bid by Carl Romanelli, which was also funded by Republicans.)

Now, I know what you're thinking: "Why would Republicans want to financially back candidates whose views in no way coincide with the views of the Republican Party and who, frankly, don't have a hope in hell of winning?" Simple, baby: divide and conquer! Republicans would as soon spit on a Green Party candidate as vote for him (or her), but some Democrats might just consider it. And every Democrat who votes for a Green candidate is a Democrat who didn't vote for a Democratic candidate!

"Ach!" you say. "That's dirty pool!" No, sweetums, that's politics. But now that you know a little bit more about how Republicans play the game, what are you gonna do about it?


Anonymous said...

Clearly the Dems should bankroll Libertarian candidates in response.

Bill @ IB

Michelle said...

Word. I'm gonna link to you if you do the same.

I just went back to re read my posting from that day and I was mad about Division Street. I was driving down it about a week ago, and there was a motorcycle in front of me. He almost completely wiped out his bike on one of the potholes!!!!!!!! Its bad!!!

D.B. Echo said...

There was a guy a few years (decades! This was back in the mid-to-late eighties, when I was in college) who was planting saplings in potholes in New York City. Fill the hole with dirt, add a young tree, presto, urban reforestation. When he was eventually brought before a judge for obstructing traffic, the judge threw out the charges because that's what the potholes were doing in the first place.