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Thinking Out Loud: The New Mason-Dixon Line and The Perfect Trash Storm

South of D.C. is the new Mason-Dixon Line and Hurricane Sandy and Election Day meet for perfect trash storm in Baltimore City.

The New Mason-Dixon Line:

I am so proud that Marylanders voted to approve the Civil Marriage Protection Act and the "Dream Act".  We really are one of the most progressive states in the Union, more so than even Massachusetts.  (I doubt we'd ever send a guy like Scott Brown to Washington to represent us - especially when he was filling Ted Kennedy's seat!)

Needless to say, I am also ecstatic that President Obama won reelection and that Maryland was firmly in his camp from the beginning.  The man is going down in history as one of our great presidents, believe me on that. 

I think it is safe to say that, despite our long history, Maryland is now officially a Northern state, at least in political attitude.  In fact, I think we can redraw the Mason-Dixon Line somewhere along I-95, south of Washington, D.C., in Virginia. 

The Perfect Trash Storm:

Well, it was bound to happen when a city of over 600,000 people only collects regular trash one day a week.  We had the perfect trash storm in areas with Tuesday regular trash pick up. 

Last week was Hurricane Sandy and the city didn't collect trash.  Luckily, most people didn't put their trash out.  But, since many people are uninformed about the goings on of their city government (witness the low voter turnout in the last mayoral election), they didn't put their trash out for the rescheduled Saturday trash collection. 

So, this past Tuesday, the regular trash day, again, many people put their trash out.  Why wouldn't you? 

Well, the reason you wouldn't is because it was Election Day and Election Day is rightfully a government holiday in Baltimore City. 

So no trash pickup, again. 

Now, all over Southwest Baltimore, trash is piled high, as if there was some kind of trash strike.  The rats are loving it.

I emailed the Mayor and every member of our City Council with the following suggestion: 

If regular trash day is missed for whatever reason, the next collect day (recycling), will be a regular trash day (where they take any trash that is put out). 

Better yet, get rid of the one-and-one trash collection (one day regular trash, one day recycling) and replace it with two days regular trash collection and one day recycling, every other week. 

In a city of this size, you can not expect it to stay clean and rat free if you are only collecting regular trash once a week.  It just won't happen.   

Back From Breather:

I took some time off from making public comments before the election because I was just so tired of all the mindless chatter that was taking place on the cable news networks and public forums on the Internet.  But now that the storm has passed, I feel like it is safe to stick my head up out of my cellar door.

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Baltimore Matt November 09, 2012 at 06:00 PM
Sean, I want to suggest that we gather all of our trash, go to the completely abandoned blocks that the city has scattered throughout (you know all of those houses that the city has a million excuses for not tearing down), fill all of those houses up with everyone’s uncollected garbage and set the entire mess on fire. We will have effectively killed 4 birds with 1 stone. 1) we will save the city from having to pay people to collect the garbage 2) saved landfill space 3) gotten rid of those eye soar boarded up houses that are bring down our property values, and 4) make people realize that fully funding the fire department needs to be a city priority.
Sean Tully November 09, 2012 at 09:01 PM
Matt, I'd just be happy if they would go back to two day a week regular trash day and give those empty houses away to people who will fix them up and live in them for 10 years.
Parkvillehoney November 10, 2012 at 05:16 AM
This city is its worst enemy. I sure wish William Donald Schaefer was still in charge, God Rest His Soul. I would like to see more city monies given to Sandtown or Habitat for Humanity. Let low income people help build homes. Baltimore City should put out a bond issue to give low income familes an interest free loan, if they have a stable job. I would like Baltimore City to work with non profit organizations to build homes for home ownership for low income families. I feel a homeowner takes better care of a home than a renter. It also makes for a stable neighborhood.
Baltimore Matt November 13, 2012 at 02:19 AM
Sure, we can fix these houses up but that won't fix the underlying problems that Baltimore has of high taxes, bad schools, few jobs, and lousy services. I say let's burn these properties, either literally or figuratively (wrecking ball, rezoning, etc), bring them back to just tracts of land, forgive the past tax liens, and eliminate all current zoning that governs them (because if housing was working we wouldn't have 20,000+ vacant/abandoned homes). We need jobs and income before we get housing (unless we want to be some sort of halfass urban commuter town where all of the work is outside of the city itself) Let's become a business friendly town that allows for new development anywhere the old development has failed.

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