American Recovery and Reinvestment Act – Inner City Style!
My wife and I went to the Coit Road Farmer’s Market today. There were cars exiting the cratered entrance to the cratered parking lot we usually use, so we had to go around the block to enter the back entrance to the even more cratered and weed-infested parking lot on that side.
The farmer’s market is an old one, started in 1932 in the depths of the First Great Depression on Cleveland’s far east side. If you’re ever in the area, it’s well worth checking out:
AND they accept Food Stamps! It’s a great place to support local farmers, community gardners, and even the Amish. AND the prices are usually less than the corporate grocery stores. Anyway, we noticed a green American Recovery and Reinvestment Act sign hanging on the cyclone fence, embraced by the ivy, weeds, and other plant life growing up the same.
ARRA? Here? We thought. What the hell are they doing? Where did this stimulus money go? The streets? No, the streets are full of potholes and there is only the occasional ghost of a yellow line. The farmer’s market building? Oh, HELL no, the thing is sagging. The parking lot? Only if they paid for the Army to use it for artillery practice.
So we asked the libertarian-leaning dude who kinda sorta runs the place. He said they put the sign up over a year ago. It seems there had been an abandoned gas station on the corner. Some contractor did tear down the remains of the station, removed the pumps, and then stood around looking for contaminants for a few weeks. They concluded there weren’t enough contaminants to be any danger and left. Without filling in the hole where the gas tank was. They promised to be back and finish.
Over a year ago. But they left the sign.
OK, Michelle Obama. You’re so big on inner city food deserts. Well, here is a farmer’s market that’s been around longer than you, complete with a well-tended community garden across the street. And yet the streets and parking lot around it are so cratered they could practice for a moon landing there. The only ARRA funding I saw at work was repaving roads in more prosperous suburban and exurban areas that didn’t even need it, and a resurfaced parking lot of an upscale suburban restaurant. You want to do something USEFUL in a predominantly African-American neighborhood? Well, here you go.
This just shows me where the Obamas’ priorities lie. It certainly isn’t with the communities of which they claim to be members.
And they and their supporters wonder why the people in those communities are no longer turning out to vote for them. Why I will not vote for them again.