Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Forging a Personal Relationship with Stimulus

I must admit the promised Stimulus Watch website is more interesting than I would have thought, although primarily because there are quite a few proposals to address longstanding annoyances in my neighborhood, like repaving Huntington Avenue, and Roger Williams Park Road, which is so disintegrated in places it's not safe to ride your bike around the loop. I hit a bad stretch too fast one day and instantly flatted both tires. One big reason people don't support government spending is they don't see the connection to their daily lives -- if you live in south Providence, the potential benefit is quite clear.

One thing that is striking is that several of the local facilities up for renovation were originally WPA projects; I know Mount Pleasant High School and the Japanese Garden and pond at Roger Williams Park both have WPA plaques.

The interactive parts of the site, I'm a little dubious about. It is a wiki, and you can leave comments and vote. Thus far it seems to mostly be attracting anti-spending cranks. This modest proposal to improve safety in Laurel, MS's housing for the elderly is an example of their ire.

I would, however, encourage you to go right now and vote YES for "warm, safe and dry schools" in Providence. Right now, many of them aren't.

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