Saturday, January 4, 2014
Drove on Arlington's iced-over streets to Central Library this morning to attend Bob Atkins's memorial service. Quite a surprise to see it was standing room only in the library's auditorium. Almost everyone who's active in Arlington politics attended.
Turns out Bob was more active in local politics and local organizations than we realized. He served for many years as Treasurer of the Arlington Republican Party, and also served in various positions for social service non-profits, ranging from his civic association to an organization assisting HIV/AIDS victims.
Whatever Bob's personal life was like, and it appears it was messy, as the lives of complex people often are, he was always ready to help others when asked. He never asked for anything for himself the many times he appeared before the County Board..
Did the County Board respect Bob? Yes. Did the County Board listen to Bob? Hardly ever. Bob's Bluemont neighborhood is the latest "redevelopment opportunity" on the County Board's "New Urbanism" agenda. County Board members are too fixated on their own belief system - helping political, non-profit, and corporate cronies - to listen to anyone but their good buds, and the voices in their own heads.
Wednesday, January 1, 2014
No contest this year for "Yuptard of the Year". First Generation Yuptard Chris Zimmerman wins hands down.
If you haven't read Post reporter Patricia Sullivan's feature about Chris Zimmerman's 'vision' in the Metro Section on December 24th, you should. More than obvious that Chris Zimmerman's goal from the very beginning of his residence in Arlington, 34 years ago, was to make-over Arlington from a diverse middle class county to a county run by, and for, Yuppies.
He not only succeeded in removing the working class and middle class from Arlington but ensured that Second Generation Yuptards would be able to live even more self-centered lives in enclaves on and around Arlington's major arterials, and in tear-down McMansions in formerly middle-class neighborhoods.
Using schemes like "New Urbanism" and "Smart Growth" Chris Zimmerman re-created an Arlington that only a Yuppie could love, packed with sports, recreation, entertainment venues, upscale restaurants, expensive housing, massive amounts of parking for expensive vehicles.
Now Chris Zimmerman is leaving the County Board to earn millions inflicting "Smart Growth" on middle class Americans who've already suffered enough over the past decade. Look for Chis and his colleagues at Smart Growth America to redevelop your older middle class suburb or older middle class downtown in the future, probably sooner than you think.