MontClairVoyant: Yes, This Column Includes a Gratuitous ‘Game of Thrones’ Mention

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DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
I saw The MC hotel while driving east on Bloomfield Avenue this past Sunday morning, and the price of gas at the Delta station in the foreground was 2.83. Comment?

Sincerely,
Delta, Dawn

Oh, I thought 2.83 was the rating of that hotel’s looks on a scale of 1-10. Guess I was wrong — 2.83 is overly generous.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Will The MC open for business before Montclair’s mayoral and Township Council elections next May?

Sincerely,
Voting Booth Tarkington

Don’t know, but I’d like to see those elections move to November for three reasons: 1) More turnout when national contests are also on the ballot. 2) Money saved when polling days are consolidated. 3) Bad candidates are better tolerated on a post-Halloween sugar high.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Speaking of elections, or lack of, Montclair has one of the few appointed boards of education in New Jersey. Should our BOE be democratically chosen?

Sincerely,
Ballots Aren’t Shallots

On balance, yes. Devotees of an appointed BOE argue that some rich people (such as charter-school pushers) could swing an election with lots of money and misleading ads. But I think Montclair voters are too smart to fall for that — or “spring” for that, if elections stay in May.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Besides, hasn’t the claim of some Democrats in Montclair and elsewhere that charters are progressive been totally destroyed by how much far-rightists Trump and his education secretary Betsy DeVos love those schools?

Sincerely,
Rhea Actionaries

With “friends” like that, who needs anemones.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Meanwhile, before you submit this column prior to the May 1 Board of Education meeting, your take on the alternate post-May 20 Montclair High schedule developed by parents such as Amy Rabb-Liu and backed by hundreds who signed a petition created by parent Jessica Henry?

Sincerely,
Teri Bull-Situation

Much better than the district schedule that would, among other things, give students way too much study-hall time in the crammed George Inness Annex as the main high school building gets asbestos abatement and stair repairs so the “Game of Thrones” cast can enjoy “milk of the poppy” cartons with reduced-price lunches.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
That makes no sense. What DOES make sense is lead screening slated for this Monday, May 6, at Montclair’s health department. Lead is an awful problem more associated with Newark, but who knows about our town with its many old pipes and many old homes?

Sincerely,
Lead Zeppelin

May 6 was also when, in 1682, Louis XIV moved his court to the Palace of Versailles because he wasn’t sure Montclair’s mega-mansion would be built.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Did Louis nickname that palace The PV in honor of The MC?

Sincerely,
Ann Nachronism

I give your question a 2.83 on a historical accuracy scale of 1-10, even as Louis built a rooftop bar on the palace to sip Bud Lights while watching the 1683 NBA Playoffs.

Dave Astor, author, is the MontClairVoyant. His opinions about politics and local events are strictly his own and do not represent or reflect the views of Baristanet.

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4 COMMENTS

  1. “Don’t know, but I’d like to see those elections move to November for three reasons:
    1) More turnout when national contests are also on the ballot
    2) Money saved when polling days are consolidated
    3) Bad candidates are better tolerated on a post-Halloween sugar high”

    3 bad reasons, because:
    1) This would, by definition, only serve to give weight to municipally uneducated & apathetic voters. I prefer we leave them on the sidelines. As it is, the Democratic county machine is bringing in vote corallers. This would only make it a more cost efficient practice for The Machine.

    2) The election cost $50k. Not a huge sum. We wasted far more on Edgemont Park, on Gateway 2 Redevelopment Plan, the Bike/Walk Montclair Study, the Master Plan rewrite, the N. Fullerton Deck, and on and on and on. We waste more than that when PSE&G or Verizon tears up our newly paved streets and leaves a zagged trench to mark their territory. Look at the paving budget and look at all the trenches.

    3) Ah, our last election had one person running against the Council. This situation will not improve if the election is moved to Nov. Any slate not sanctioned by the Democratic machine will get overwhelmed.

    I think you are a closet Democrat.

  2. Thank you for the comment, Frank! I hear you, but I guess I mostly disagree.

    While Montclair, like any town, has some “municipally uneducated and apathetic voters,” I think there is a smaller percentage of such voters in Montclair than in many other communities.

    You’re right that $50,000 is not a huge sum in the great scheme of things, but it’s $50,000 more than zero. (PARCC math may differ. 🙂 )

    I’m not a fan of a good percentage of Democratic politicians, including a number of those associated with the Essex County “machine.” But, in most cases, they sure beat today’s Republican politicians.

  3. “municipally uneducated & apathetic voters“

    —Lord knows that Mr. Rubacky has a list of everyone in the township he thinks should vote (and 5 reasons why), but this is some particularly rank nonsense. It’s mean spirited, anti-democratic claptrap and worthy of our scorn just for that (I’ll let Mr Rubacky explain how there are no racial overtones here either).

    This is also an example of Mr Rubacky’s pathetic need to publicly spew whatever random, half-baked drivel that pops into his head. Elsewhere on this site, he derides the “couple dozen” citizens that he bitterly claims dominate civic life. Here, he advocates modern day Jim Crow thinking to restrict who votes on that civic life. It’s not inconsistent—it’s incoherent.

  4. I totally agree, jcunningham, as I think you’re saying, that the more people who vote the better. Some of those voters will be more knowledgeable than others, but they all have the right to vote. Democracy, and all that. Many Republican bigwigs these days feel otherwise with their various kinds of voter suppression.

    There does seem to be a relatively small number of people who “run” Montclair, though that’s probably not unusual for most places. I don’t mind so much when elected people do that — after all, they WERE elected, even if I disagree with many of their decisions. What really bothers me is that a small number of wealthy Montclair developers (unelected of course) sort of bought their way (by owning land) into being among the people shaping our town.

Comments are closed.