Kemp Falls Flat
Did you stay awake through the Kemp-Gore debate last night? Congratulations if you did. And no regrets if you didnt, except for Kemps passing reference to Eleanor Holmes Norton near the end. How did she enter the debate? The progressive flat-tax plan, of course. Kemp tried to make the point that the Democrats dont have a plan for Americas inner citiesand he cited presidential indifference to the fate of DC as a case in point. He didnt make the point very well. In fact, Gore had him for lunch.
But even if Kemp was persuasive, his economic thinking is wrong. (If the President can categorize policy issues as either "right" or "wrong," Ill take the same liberty here.) Kemp wants to create wealth in the inner cities (read minority) and he sees welfare payments as being the bane to wealth creation. Fine. But to create wealth, Kemp believes all you need is access to capital. Must be where they got the word capitalism from. If you dont tax it, youll have more of it. Well, thats probably true. Whats not true is that increased capital causes increased wealth.
Capital is one of only many factors that create wealthand a relatively small one at that. Skills create wealth. Education creates wealth. Infrastructure creates wealth. Government institutions create (and can take away) wealth. Oh, and clever ideas, like monopolizing the production of software, can create wealth. Stupid ideas, like start a local newspaper, can diminish wealth.
Pouring capital into the Nations Capital is like loaning money to the District Government (before there were fiscal controls). The desire is insatiable, the ability to use it wisely negligible. Gore implied the point that one has to work on all factors of wealth creation to succeed. Pouring investment money into a city where so many citizens are churning through the penal system is not going to create a healthier city. The issue is more complex than that.
And apparently too complex for Kemp to understand. Hes been singing this one note for 20 years. Kemps ideas for cities sound sweet, and if you like wealth redistribution to those that already have it (and some of you probably do), support him. But dont kid yourself that Kemps policies will help people in poverty. Kemp has himself fooled, but fortunately the overnight polls show he didnt fool too many people in last nights debate.
On the advice of counsel (editorial, not legal), Im no longer running the classified ads separately. Instead, Ill go back to placing them at the end of the newsletters. Why? I dont know. My counsel persuaded me that more of you will read them this way.
So send in those ads and listings and Ill run themspace available.
Also free! dc.movie: Short movie reviews and movie discussion. To subscribe, send an email message to firstname.lastname@example.org and note the name of the newsletter in the subject line or body of the text.
Barriers in Barrytown
Those barriers where only up because of all the traffic surrounding the 10,000 financial people in town for the IMF and World Bank meetings. Their headquarters was the Sheraton on Connecticut. Plus pretty much every Embassy in town had a party last week for their financial people and since most of the Embassies are fairly close together, the barriers were there to try and help with traffic control. That is also why there were so many limos and Lincoln Town cars on the road.
Newt Takes on Marion
Why would newt launch a tirade on Marion Barry? Newt figures hell hold the house this year, and that he is laying the ground work to eliminate the home rule government. That and tirading at Marion is safe and he needs someone to vent upon.
After reading Dianne Rhodes comments on generating positive p.r. for the city, I had to take a few deep breaths and calm myself down. Crime is bad in D.C. (worse than most people know) and I get angry when people poo-poo it. In particular, auto theft is spiraling upward. So I dont blame that guy from the dating service for not wanting to drive his car into D.C.
To give a personal illustration of how bad auto theft has become, my husband and I have assisted the police in recovering six stolen cars in the past two weeks, five of which were from Maryland. (We live in Bloomingdale, which is the neighborhood between North Capitol and Georgia Ave. and Florida Ave. and Michigan Ave. It is located in Ward 5 and in is the 5th police district.)
The sad part is that the police dont have the resources to recover stolen cars in a prompt fashion. Through our efforts to get the stolen cars we found recovered, we learned that there is only one working tow truck available to recover stolen cars and that not a single flat-bed truck is available to pick up those that have been stripped of their wheels. And get thisto make up for this lack of resources, the police rely heavily on the insurance companies of the stolen car owners to tow recovered stolen cars.
Another problem the police have is storage of recovered stolen cars. In 5D, there are often more stolen cars than space available to store them. In such instances, the cars are often left to sit on the street or alley, making them easy targets for stripping. This leads to the need for a flat-bed, and Ive already told you the situation with that
If folks really want to know how bad things really are, I suggest they get a police scanner and tune in to the channels for 5D, 7D, and 8Dthe three highest crime areas in the city. And if you identify a stolen car in your neighborhood (its easy to spot thempunched out locks, busted steering column, broken window, some times with paper tags for some other car rather than a hot tag number) look for papers in the car identifying the true owner and call him. Once the true owner comes to reclaim the car, the police have no choice but to come and complete the necessary recovery paperwork so that the owners can take their cars back. I have tried this and it really works.
John Whiteside Not Ready to Move to Fairfax jmw@USORDER.COM
Dianne is quite right. I work in Herndon, and I was amazed when one day a number of people in my office commented that they would never go into DC after dark. When people find out I live in DC, they usually respond with polite shock, and its clear theyre thinking, "Why??" I try to do my bit by talking about how nice it is to live in Washington though in all fairness, you have to be someone who prefers city life to like it. There are some folks who are just happier in a more rural setting, and thats fine (a number of people in my office live out in Loudoun and Fauquier counties, which is nice in an entirely different way).
Part of the problem, I think, is that DC gets a lot of bad press on crime. Not that the crime problem isnt there; but news about crime is presented in such a way that people forget that the majority of DC residents go through each day unscathed. This extends beyond the DC suburbs; when I was moving here from Boston, many of my neighbors in my inner-city neighborhood with drugs and gangs and murders said, "Oh my gosh, how could you live there? You cant walk the streets at night!" But I live in a nicer neighborhood in DC than I did in Boston (for less money, I might add).
Step one is to reduce crime, obviously, but it doesnt hurt to let people know how much is good about DC, to encourage them to come in and take advantage of all it has to offer which also gives everyone around Washington a greater interest in making DC a safer, more pleasant place.
So dont forget to tell all your suburban friends about all the good things that keep you living here.
A resident of the Quebec House apartment building was mugged at gunpoint on Monday, October 7, 1996, on Quebec Street, NW. This person was walking home around midnight when the incident occurred near the Adas Israel parking lot. I heard that the suspect is a tall, light-skinned black man with an athletic build and slight mustache and wearing a fanny pack.
You might want to contact the Police Department for confirmation of this description. Whats happening to the neighborhood? First a steak-knife attacker, followed by an increase in vandalism along Porter St, then a robbery at the Post Office and now gunpoint attacks?? Maybe it is time to move to the suburbs!!
How sick am I of hearing people bellyache about jury duty! I have little sympathy for all of you, and I suspect that the same people who bitch and moan about having to spend what usually amounts to one day every two years at Superior Court are the same people who were kvetching about how stupid the O.J. jury was. Jury duty is not the hardship d.c.story contributors seem to think, and it is not just a privilege but a duty of citizenship in a democratic society. You have no right to complain about the state of the justice system if you arent willing to participate in it fully.
Since many of Storys readers seem to live in the Cleveland Park area, Id like to pose a question to them. Eating at Yenching Palace recently we noticed a steady stream of yupsters walk up to the cash register, pick up a bag of carry out and depart. Our surroundings were old, yet pleasant, but the restaurant had slightly more than a few diners eating at tables. I asked management what percentage of the Palaces business was carry out and was told that it was 60%. Now the question. If the food is good enough to eat why dont more people dine in? Are we that busy that we dont have time (or want to take it) to enjoy a meal? Hey, the mai tais are wonderful at the Yenching but you cant get them with your carry out. I realize this has nothing to do with potholes, Anacostia or Uncle Marion but an explanation would satisfy this curious one.
[BTW: Any feedback (so to speak) on Coppis in Cleveland Park? jeff]
An odd thing happened recently on Rodman Street.
You may recall my tale of the sinkhole that was finally fixed after I called Councilwoman Kathy Pattersons office. Well, only a week or so after the sinkhole was fixed, the District sent a crew to Rodman that laid new asphalt over two big portions of the street (at the intersection of Quebec and a little farther west). Oddly, they didnt repave the entire street, only those two portions. And they didnt bother towing parked cars, so the new paving doesnt extend from curb to curb. (As far as I can tell they city didnt give local residents much warning, if any, of the impending repairs.)
Im thankful they repaired a stretch thats been in sore need of repair for quite some time, but I cant help laughing at how they did it. I reckon that a half-asked job is better than none, and as much as, if not more than, we can expect from the District.
Re: Spring Valley Exxon & Emissions Test
Sorry a reader could not pass the DC inspection test due to emissions. However, its very unlikely that the mechanics at Spring Valley Exxon caused that problem.
I had a similar rejection once, with my 88 GM product. The DC Inspector at the Half Street station gave me the printout of the emission result, so I could take it to my mechanic. I took the printout to a mechanic (not Spring Valley, but the Bethesda Buick at Wisconsin & Jennifer). Mechanic did nothing, said "oh, you just took your car in for the test when it was cold. Take the car out on the beltway for 20 minutes and run it at 50 mph or faster. That will warm it up. Then drive straight to the inspection."
Did that, passed the test. Engines probably emit more half-combusted particles when not warmed up. Try warming up the 88 Mazda and going for inspection immediately after warming it up.
Steinway Grand Piano, Model L Ebony satin finish for sale $22,500.00/OBO, 1975 vintage. beautiful finish. Bench included. 10% commission to brokers, Cash sales. Must see.
Im am interested in renting a harpsichord or possibly buying one if reasonably priced. Any suggestions on how to arrange this would be appreciated.
karen lightfoot email@example.com
Photocopy Machine Needed
D.C. elementary schools copier is busted and is praying for a corporate guardian angel (or sugar daddytake your choice) who might have an older model not quite ready for the garbage heap. Call June Confer at 576-6140 or Debby Thomas at 564-5041.
Ralph Blessing firstname.lastname@example.org
Tutor: Spanish, French, Italian. All levels; guaranteed results. Contact Carla at (202)363-8571
For Sale: Dining Room Table and Overhead Light
5x 3 beveled glass dining room table with 6 chairs $200. Matching overhead halogen light $200. Buy both for $300. Call (202) 682-6338.
Martin Lynds email@example.com
Im planning to sand and refinish my hardwood floors. Can anyone recommend an affordable, reliable person/company?
Martin Lynds firstname.lastname@example.org
FOOTLIGHTS:A MODERN DRAMA DISCUSSION GROUP
Come join us to discuss plays from the modern theater! Footlights meets every month at a metro-area restaurant to have dinner & discuss a modern play, from Ibsen to Albee. Sometimes a local director or actor joins our discussion, & often we attend the play were discussing & stay afterwards for a 2d discussion, this time with the director & cast. Join our list by sending the message "join theatre" (without the quotation marks) to email@example.com. We will be meeting Monday, October 21 to discuss Robert Bolts "A Man for All Seasons," Tuesday November 19 to discuss John Guares "The House of Blue Leaves," & Wednesday December 18 to discuss Tom Stoppards "Arcadia." RSVP by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
David Sobelsohn email@example.com
If there are any charitable organizations in the metro area seeking to set up a web page, Id be happy to offer advice and assistance for free. Good things can flow from having a web presence, methinks.
Its best to reach me via email, but I can also be reached at my home/office at: (202) 686-5465. If there is a charitable organization in your neighborhood that you support, Id appreciate if you could pass along this message to them.
Also, when calling by phone, please keep in mind that I live in a shared house and my house mates may not have a clue of how to answer your html questions. :-)
Phil Shapiro firstname.lastname@example.org
Home PC Computer Assistance.
Ill help you choose and buy the best model for the lowest price, get your computer up and running, teach you the ins and outs of Windows 95 and applications, show you how to maintain your system, build special applications for you, and get you up and running on the internet. $60/hour. 202.244.4163.
Jeffrey Itell Story@intr.net
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