The 'New Economy' is all about how the 1% and their businesses can consolidate all business interest into their own companies basically capturing all economic transactions in the country. This means disguising yourself as a 'starter company' tied to university innovation centers (these are mega-corps in disguise cornering any small business startup), you dry up all worker's disposable income so they can't consume (mega-corps are making their billions overseas and using the Fed's 0% loan rates and can weather this while small businesses fail), and then place their business fronts on development maps as land to be used as parking lots. All enterprise zone development entails national corporations either with contractors handling infrastructure or as national chain stores. In Baltimore, small business owners are crying foul as businesses that have been community anchors for decades are forced to close.......this is deliberate folks.
So, we are being saddled with a Racing Debacle straight from Dante's lower regions of the Inferno......everyone has said NO to this.....media, small businesses, citizens, and city council members. It does nothing for the local economy and it uses great amounts of taxpayer money to subsidize the event. I spent all day Sunday at the Race talking with small business owners and vendors, looking at whom came to the race. IT WAS PITIFUL. CHAIN LINK FENCING AND METAL BLEACHERS COMING RIGHT TO THE ENTRANCE OF BUSINESSES MAKES THIS EVENT FEEL OPPRESSIVE SAYS MOST PEOPLE WITH WHOM I SPOKE.....TOURISTS INCLUDED. THERE WERE MAYBE A FEW THOUSAND TICKET HOLDERS FOR THE ENTIRE EVENT (WHY WOULD YOU PAY THESE PRICES SAID A COUPLE WATCHING OUTSIDE THE GATES WHEN IT'S ON TV?). THE BULK OF THE PEOPLE CIRCLING THE EVENT WERE THE RACING COMPANY EMPLOYEES AND THEIR FAMILIES.....A FEW THOUSAND ALL FROM PLACES OTHER THAN BALTIMORE AND MARYLAND. THEY FILLED THE HOTELS AND SAT AT THE TABLES OF THOSE RESTAURANTS TIED TO THE HOTELS. MOST OF THE VENDORS WERE ASSOCIATED WITH THE RACE. There was no bump of local employment because the locals that were there.......230 police and the existing security personnel of these same hotels working overtime. Businesses lost money as NO ONE CAME DOWNTOWN. Everyone with whom I spoke indicated there was pressure not to say anything negative about the event, and as the Baltimore Sun said.......one businessman felt he had to pay a $5,000 bribe to the Race in order not to have his business blocked. THIS IS A THIRD WORLD WAY OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND IT IS DESIGNED TO BRING BUSINESS TO THE NATIONAL CHAINS AT THE EXPENSE OF THE LOCAL, SMALL BUSINESSES. The 'Drink and Peanut' vendors pay almost $400 a year for a permit and they were moved from prime spots to side streets, making NO money on this event. These are the under-served trying every way they can to make money legitimately pushed aside yet again.
The day the event ended local news had this to say: WBAL said that the administration said there was close to 100,000 in attendance; WJZ said the bleachers were full of cheering fans....the Baltimore Sun published a photo of filled bleachers; and even WBFF-Fox tried to keep the coverage upbeat. By morning, the Baltimore Sun let people know many of the real stats although it still used inflated attendance figures. Rawlings-Blake says that this time the city collected the costs before the race so the taxpayers and vendors didn't lose money. As the Baltimore Sun points out instead of collecting the $850,000 for city expenses charged to last year's Racing group, the city charged $350,000. That means taxpayers footed $500,000 of costs that should have been for the company. That doesn't include the millions on top of that.
The sole purpose of the event is to show Baltimore's skyline to the world as requested by developers attracting the best of the best to the city. One block from this city core stands abject poverty created from decades of failed city policy. You now have the city declaring war on those poor. That is why the 'New Economy' includes third world immigrants......used to this very environment. We do not want a country that mirrors India and that is where Third Way corporate politicians are heading. I speak with small business owners who have been anchors in their communities for decades feeling like war has been declared with this development environment. THERE IS SOMETHING WRONG WITH A MASTER PLAN THAT THROWS EXISTING PEOPLE OUT OF THE PROCESS AND OUT OF THE PICTURE!
WE MAY NEED TO VOTE OBAMA BACK BECAUSE HE IS BETTER THAN ROMNEY, BUT WE WANT TO BE RID OF THE STATE AND LOCAL CORPORATE POLITICIANS! SHOUT LOUDLY AND STRONGLY AGAINST REELECTING THESE CORPORATE SHILLS.
VOTE YOUR INCUMBENT OUT OF OFFICE!!!!
More Occupiers protest Democratic convention than RNC
By Liz Goodwin, Yahoo! News
(Goodwin/Yahoo)CHARLOTTE--About a half a mile away from the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, more than 100 protesters affiliated with the Occupy Wall Street movement are camped out in tents and on sleeping pads in a sweltering local park.
The protest turnout has already far exceeded that of Tampa, when the threat of a hurricane derailed East Coast activists' plans to come down by bus and camp out in a tent city they dubbed "Romneyville." Protests at the RNC were so sparse that the local police chief cancelled several planned press conferences that would have addressed the force's response to activists. The largest protest event only attracted 300 people, while a coalition of 1,000 Occupy and other protesters already squashed that record in a march on Sunday in Charlotte.
Ryan Lash, an Occupier from Washington D.C., told Yahoo News on Monday that despite the group's bigger presence in Charlotte, the protesters equally dislike Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.
"We don't like either side," the shirtless Lash said. "I challenge you to find a real Occupier who supports either Romney or Obama."
One Occupier organizer, Aaron Black of Minneapolis, has urged fellow protesters to back Obama over Romney, according to Lash. But to no avail. "[Romney and Obama] are the same thing," Lash said.
John Harrelson, who identified himself as a recently discharged veteran of the Marine Corps from Biloxi, Mississippi, said he's protesting the ongoing the war in Afghanistan. "Obama's not doing his job. He brought me home just to send me back," he said. Harrelson added that he doesn't think Romney would be any better.
I WOULD ENCOURAGE YOU TO LISTEN TO THIS REPORT. OUR POLITICIANS NOW FEEL FREE TO SAY ANYTHING WITH NO FEAR OF RETRIBUTION ON ELECTION DAY. THAT IS BECAUSE ELECTIONS ARE CAPTURED. THE REPORT ACKNOWLEDGES THE PRESSURE JOURNALISTS ARE UNDER TO LET THE POLITICAL MESSAGE STAND AS IS AND THEIR QUESTION TO YOU AND ME..........WHY SHOULD JOURNALISTS FIGHT FOR TRUTH IF THE THERE IS NO ONE MAKING POLITICIANS ACCOUNTABLE.......THROUGH LAW OR ELECTIONS.
WE MUST WAKE UP NOW FROM THIS APATHY THAT ALLOWS THIS PROCESS TO HAPPEN. IT IS FAR EASIER TO STOP IT NOW THAN IT WILL BE TO BRING IT BACK ONCE OUR DEMOCRACY IS COMPLETELY GONE. YOU MUST RECOGNIZE THIS POLITICAL ENVIRONMENT IS THIRD WORLD.
THERE ARE NO FACT-CHECKERS IN BALTIMORE! WELL.....MAYBE ME.
Fact Checking and "post-truth" Politics Friday, August 31, 2012 On The Media/NPR
Play00:00 / 00:00ListenAddDownloadEmbed Stream m3u
Guests: James Fallows Hosted by: Brooke Gladstone
THIS YEAR'S RACE ORGANIZER ADMITTED THAT LAST YEAR'S ATTENDANCE FIGURES WERE SKEWED EVEN AS HE SKEWS THIS YEAR'S (THEY WON'T EVEN RELEASE THE DATA). WHAT HE AND THE CITY ARE TRYING TO DO IS MAKE THIS EVENT PROFITABLE THROUGH TV ADVERTISEMENT AND DON'T REALLY CARE ABOUT LOCAL ATTENDANCE. IT IS LIKE FOOTBALL OR BASEBALL.....ALL THE MONEY IS MADE ON BROADCAST ADVERTISING. WHO CARES ABOUT THE LOCALS? NO ONE OBVIOUSLY.
Smaller crowds and clouds greet the Grand Prix Race On refuses to reveal number of tickets sold
Ryan Hunter-Reay won the second Grand Prix of Baltimore, a sloppy race full of fits and starts run before a diminished crowd.
Organizers, though, came away convinced that this year's hastily planned event proved an IndyCar race can work downtown.
"This is a 90-day miracle," said J.P. Grant, the local financier who swept in three months ago to take over the race following the collapse of two previous organizers. "Our goal was to put on a race we could handle ourselves."
IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard praised Grant's work and said he was pleased with the crowd and quality of the race, despite scattered showers that helped result in nine caution flags and a number of restarts on the track. He would not guarantee a return, though, as he is still finalizing next year's schedule; that includes negotiating how much Grant's company, Race On, will have to pay.
"Baltimore has the potential to be in the top three races of the year," he said.
Race On refused to discuss ticket sales, as did Andretti Sports Marketing, which handled promotion. Representatives for the Baltimore police and fire departments also said they would not comment on the size of the crowd.
Areas choked with fans last year were more open, though, and grandstands were slow to fill.
Grand Prix survival depends on convincing fans, businesses it is worth the trouble Though new race organizers have focused on being 'good neighbors,' tension remains after difficult first race
Tony Assadi shakes his head as he looks out over the racetrack for the second Grand Prix of Baltimore, which zooms past his Luna Del Sea restaurant and its outside patio on West Pratt Street.
He and his patrons have a clear view — no blue screen blocks the sightline to the street-turned-course. But for that privilege, he signed a contract and was charged $5,000 by race organizers.
"I paid it," he said. "But I didn't feel comfortable. It felt like I was paying a bribe."
As the weekend of racing heads toward the finish line today, the stability and sustainability of the event remains unclear. Tens of thousands of fans packed downtown streets to watch the first two days of the festival, as they did last year, and drivers, though they griped about the bumpy track, once again marveled at the crowds. THIS IS AN OUTRIGHT MISREPRESENTATION OF THE NUMBERS.
But Assadi's concerns echo a larger theme: Does the boost to tourism and business outweigh the extensive and intrusive construction that comes with hosting the event? How deep will organizers need to reach into their pockets to keep the race going? The race's new organizers say they have focused on making the event integrate more seamlessly with the city, but tension still exists.
"These are the key metrics," said Tim Mayer, pegged by race promoter and IndyCar legend Michael Andretti to "quarterback" the group's efforts. "Can we be good neighbors? Can we be good business people? Can we stabilize this thing? Can we make sure traffic flows? Those are the kind of things we're building on, because as we go on with this ... we've got to make people see we're good for the city."
He also said that Race On Baltimore would judge the success of the race not on attendance or money made — they expect to operate at a loss — but by response from the city's citizens and business owners. The Orioles have already praised the group for working to keep the area around Camden Yards tidy and accessible.
While Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake proclaimed the Grand Prix weekend a success immediately after last year's event, race organizers failed to pay their debts to vendors, investors, the city and state agencies. After denying reports that the organizers were financially unstable in the months leading up the race, Rawlings-Blake's administration later publicly severed ties with the racing team, Baltimore Racing Development.
In February, her administration assured residents that they had found a stable and professional group to take over the race. But the second group, Downforce Baltimore, fell apart before making any progress on the event.
J.P. Grant, a Columbia-based investor who has financed dozens of city contracts, took over about three months ago. Grant, one of Rawlings-Blake's top campaign donors, partnered with contractor Greg O'Neill to form Race On Baltimore — the name chosen to quell rumors that IndyCar would not return.
The team hired racing legend Andretti's firm to promote the race and scrambled to organize a stripped-down festival while fighting perceptions that the race was doomed or would again be revealed as a financial liability for the city.
Rawlings-Blake said she marvels at the speed with which they've put together the race.
"You can't plan a bar mitzvah in 90 days, and they've planned a world-class event," she said.
Certainly IndyCar insiders crave stability, and CEO Randy Bernard said Race On must make good on its financial agreements before the circuit can commit to returning. But racing insiders are also looking for evidence of a long-term future that fits with their own goals, mainly regaining fans and enticing national sponsors.
"A successful race looks like the first year in Baltimore did: a big crowd, lots of enthusiasm, a gangbusters event," said Robin Miller, a racing analyst for the SPEED channel. "But then the bottom line came out. Street races are the toughest thing in the world because they're so expensive."
Bernard has hopes of increasing the IndyCar schedule to expand its reach and fulfill television deals. He's seen street races fizzle in other cities, though, and is not ready to declare Baltimore a mainstay. ALMOST EVERY CITY HAS ENDED PARTNERSHIPS WITH THIS INDUSTRY BECAUSE NO ONE WANTED IT.
"I've learned from racing that you've got to be a realist," said Bernard, who was chosen to try to ignite IndyCar's resurgence after building the Pro Bull Riding Tour. "Expect the unexpected. You just can't make a decision until you see how it plays out."
This group's challenge, he said, could not be clearer: "They have to succeed everywhere they failed last year." He said he has been impressed with Grant's organization so far.