P&J must say that the Occupy Wall Street folks (whose enterprise is now spreading like wildfire) pretty much have "the big idea" covered: 1 percent have an incredibly large slice of the money and the other 99 percent of us suffer. Why is this? Here's your multiple-choice: a) the 1 percent are so much smarter and harder working than everyone else, b) capitalism is inherently unfair, c) the game is rigged (i.e., "the pump don't work 'cuz the vandals took the handle"). We'd go with b and c on this.
Of course, we've always known that capitalism is unfair. That's why, for a number of decades, we've operated under a hybrid system — with a healthy dose of socialism thrown in so that we can tamp down exploitation of the masses. We like to think of it as "the American Way."
The real action, of late, is a ramped-up rigging of the game. One need only look at the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision, codifying the notion that wealth always wins.
OCCUPY WALL STREET IS SOUNDING SOME ALARMS ON THIS FRONT. BUT IT WILL GO THE WAY OF THE HIPPIES IF ACTIVISTS LET THIS MOMENT PASS WITHOUT SHARPENING THE MESSAGE, THE TACTICS, AND THE PLAN. LET'S USE THIS TO COME UP WITH A WELL THOUGHT-OUT AGENDA. WE'VE GOT PEOPLE'S ATTENTION. LET'S NOT LOSE IT.ENUFF
An ongoing battle between a North Providence neighborhood and Johnston Asphalt Company, a plant on Allendale Mill Pond at the North Providence-Johnston border, seems to have been gathering steam in recent weeks.
The neighbors, banded together as Environmental Neighbors United Fighting Fumes — ENUFF — have long contended that the plant has been releasing all sorts of too-foul stuff into the air.
The neighborhood group has most recently solicited assistance from the non-profit Global Community Monitor, which helps locals do grassroots air monitoring. Polly Reynolds, the veteran news reporter and a member of the neighborhood group, tells P&J that ENUFF is also working with Massachusetts Institute of Technology staff to further test the air.
"They have a number of other plants," Polly says, of the company that owns Johnston Asphalt. "There are only two people who work at this one and I don't see the need for it."
It is always heartening to see average citizens organize to get something done.
The October 17 issue of US magazine brings news of an event that P&J would have given someone else's eye tooth to attend: the lovely nuptials of Caleb Followill of Kings of Leon and somebody he needed named Lily Aldridge.
Caleb's sex must have been on fire (OK, that's it with the lame lyrics allusions — ed.) when he hired famed wedding planner to the stars, Sharon Sacks, to set up his big party. Reported US, "Sacks set up shuffleboard and cornhole stations at the reception so guests could mix and mingle."
We're sure a splendid time was had by all.
Well, it's all but official: the Next Big Thing — that bright young star who represents all that is special about America — will provide the halftime entertainment at the Super Bowl on February 5 in Indianapolis: you guessed it, none other than Madonna.