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Oct 24, 2011 4:57 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Camp Developer Files $65 Million Lawsuit Against Project Critics

Oct 26, 2011 10:03 AM

Jay Jacobs, the applicant behind a plan to create a seasonal day camp in North Sea, is suing two of the project’s most vocal critics, seeking $65 million in damages, claiming that they defamed him in a flier about the project.

The two individuals, John Barona and John Gorman, are president and vice president of the Little Fresh Pond Association, a group of neighbors who have mobilized with other groups in opposition to Mr. Jacobs’s plan to create a summer children’s day camp on about 17.3 acres of land along Majors Path in North Sea. Traffic, noise and potential pollution to neighboring Little Fresh Pond are at the heart of their concerns. The camp could eventually boast an enrollment of 350 to 400 children, and about 60 counselors who would live on the grounds.

On Monday afternoon, Mr. Jacobs, chairman of the State Democratic Committee, said the contents of the flier were “defamatory and malicious,” and that it included misstatements about his project, particularly in regard to its sewage flow. The flier states that the project would “dump 35 percent more sewage into North Sea’s watershed than Suffolk County’s limits,” among other assertions. It also alleges that Mr. Jacobs has been “hiding these harms and lying his way to get exemption.”

“What I would like is, I want them to apologize,” Mr. Jacobs said. “I believe they have to undo the damage they have done, in that I’d like them to take an ad in the same newspaper that I’ve been taking out full-page [advertisements] in, and at the first level state that they have no reason to believe, and no evidence of, any lying on my part, that they apologize for accusing me of it, and then that they admit that they have been exaggerating the facts.”

When reached on Monday, Mr. Barona said he believed Mr. Jacobs’s lawsuit, which was filed on Friday in State Supreme Court, was an act of desperation. He said his group’s lawyers plan to countersue Mr. Jacobs.

“I personally see it as Jay Jacobs feeling like he’s on the losing end of the battle here and he’s a desperate man,” he said. “I think he’s trying to silence us and intimidate us so that he can go forward with his project. But I think it’s going to really work to his disadvantage, because I think he’s shedding a different light on himself, and the town officials are going to stand up and notice what kind of intimidation tactics he’s taking in the neighborhood here. I don’t think this a good thing.”

In a press release sent out on Monday afternoon, Mr. Gorman denounced the suit. “This is a sad day for Southampton,” he said, “that a resident expressing their legitimate opposition to a developer’s plans is sued for tens of millions of dollars for what’s in a flier.”

The same statement, e-mailed by North Sea resident Foster Maer, claims that Mr. Jacobs’s lawsuit was a “Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation,” or SLAPP lawsuit, an action taken by a developer designed primarily to quash local opposition to a project. New York State has an anti-SLAPP statute.

Mr. Jacobs emphasized that his lawsuit was not intended to do that. “Let me make it clear that we have a good number of people opposed to our project,” he said. “I respect them. I respect their opinions. I disagree with them … however, I cannot allow someone to defame me, malign me personally, and I cannot let that pass.”

Mr. Jacobs added that he is changing his project once again, reducing the amount of septic flow from 6,600 gallons of sewage to 5,100 gallons, to come in line with current Suffolk County Department of Health standards, rather than claiming the higher amount as a grandfathered right. He is proposing to do so by reducing the number of people living on the grounds by 20, bringing the total number of counselors to about 40. “And that way we are now going to be exactly in compliance with every possible standard every person in the [Little] Fresh Pond area would have asked for,” Mr. Jacobs said.

The lawsuit was filed just one day after approximately 100 angry North Sea residents packed into a Southampton Zoning Board of Appeals meeting last Thursday night, October 20—following a protest on the steps of Town Hall—to deliver an emphatic message to members of the board, that they don’t want the day camp. About 30 people spoke at the meeting, including Mr. Jacobs.

The group of neighbors is asking the ZBA to rule on their challenge of a determination made this summer by Chief Building Inspector Michael Benincasa that Mr. Jacobs’s plan does not constitute an expansion or change in use from what currently exists on the residentially zoned site, and that he only needs site plan approval from the Planning Board, instead of a variance from the ZBA.

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wowwww.. I can't believe the level of drama that has erupted from this issue! I very recently used to live directly across the street from where this proposed camp is / was slated to be built, and I can tell you from the people that I've talked to in the neighborhood about it that none of them wants the camp there, and I can totally sympathize. Alas, it's a free country.
By Brian Bailey (36), Southampton on Oct 24, 11 5:17 PM
The problem for Mr. Jacobs is that what is in the flyer is true. The North Sea community is only asking him to prove that what he says is fact is indeed fact. He resists doing so & cites his personal opinions as reason to believe him. Bring it on Mr. Democratic Party Chairman, let's get all the facts out in the open.
By East End 2 (151), Southampton on Oct 24, 11 5:31 PM
again, it is all about the $$$$$ and no one cares about the local people anymore. they won't be happy until we have all left THEIR town.
By local (106), north sea on Oct 24, 11 5:38 PM
2 members liked this comment
I am SO. NOT. SURPRISED. I am not sure when, exactly, people out here will get it ... Jay Jacobs was a MAJOR benefactor of Ben Zwirn for EH Supervisor back when he lost (thank goodness), and has continued to back the Dems vis a vis personal funds or committee donations for . . . ever? .. while the Dem party derides any contribution to the Republicans as evidence that GOP'ers are influenced by 'developers". Oh - maybe if you make a profit off of "kids" - vs. "adults" - it's OK because you're being ...more
By Board Watcher (534), East Hampton on Oct 24, 11 5:47 PM
1 member liked this comment
I refrained from commenting on this news item before because neither side engendered sympathy. On the one hand was a developer who wanted to make MORE money by resurrecting a moribund day camp and on the other a bunch of NIMBY neighbors. Mr. Jacobs suit has changed my opinion.

This is simply a (common) ploy by a wealthy predator to clobber critics into submission by compelling them to spend thousands of dollars (or more) defending themselves against a specious suit. Mr. Jacobs has no ...more
By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Oct 24, 11 5:58 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By V.Tomanoku (790), southampton on Oct 24, 11 6:17 PM
2 members liked this comment
I have NO knowledge of the personalities involved in this, HOWEVER, shouldn't this use as a Day Camp be "grandfathered" by the fact that it is a pre-existing use. The camp is NOT a NEW THING, I went there 2 summers in the 1950s and found it an enjoyable and worthwhile experience. MAY LOGIC & COMMON SENSE PREVAIL ! (Not likely though)
By Muscoot (7), Hampton Bays on Oct 24, 11 6:07 PM
1 member liked this comment
But when you were there is was a rustic setting. This camp is going to remove vast swaths of trees, pave driveways, groom and fertilize grounds, install 4 swimming pools, and create excess sewage from 500 people -- all of which inrease toxic run-off into neighboring Little Fresh Pond - a rare and beautiful fresh water ecosystem. We fear it will end up dead like Mill Pond. We want Jacobs do a full environmental SEQRA review to be sure all safe-guards are taken to protect the Pond. He has not done ...more
By lindsaybee (4), Southampton on Oct 27, 11 10:49 AM
SLAPP - A strategic lawsuit against public participation (SLAPP) is a lawsuit that is intended to censor, intimidate, and silence critics by burdening them with the cost of a legal defense until they abandon their criticism or opposition.
By Bodoc (4), Montauk on Oct 24, 11 6:11 PM
Suits of this type are called SLAPP suits - Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation and are fundamentally different from other types of
lawsuits because they seek to stifle legitimate political expression. Citizens are allowed and encouraged to comment on land use and environmental matters - thats why there are public hearings. A lawsuit of this type if only meant to scare people into not commenting. Jay Jacobs should be ashamed.

By sunshine (47), southampton on Oct 24, 11 6:11 PM
The proof is in the pudding. The camp hasn't even opened and the neighborhood has been slimed.
By nagaika (6), Southampton on Oct 24, 11 6:22 PM
Disqusting! I am embarrassed to be a fellow Dem! Shame on you Mr. Jacobs.
By maggieb (11), sag harbor on Oct 24, 11 6:29 PM
2 members liked this comment
I know he is a democrat, but with this kind of vindictive, childish, foot-stomping move he would be the perfect manager of Kabot's campaign.
By peoplefirst (787), Southampton on Oct 24, 11 7:16 PM
This is the State Democrat leader doing this to the people of North Sea and Little Fresh Pond. It does not surprise me at all. Jacobs has been trying to bully his way into the East End with his camps for a while. He was one of the biggest contributors to the Democrat East Hampton Town Board race two years ago, and lets see what Fleming and the other Dems in Southampton have to say about this. If I was a Southampton Republican like Preston I would put it to the Southampton Dems right now -- what ...more
By mrmako61 (148), southampton on Oct 24, 11 7:25 PM
1 member liked this comment
Mrmako, you may have a point about this lawsuit, but what caught my eye was the term "a Southampton Republican like Preston." Now, Christine Preston Scalera, the GOP import running for Town Board, may be a lot of things, but a "Southampton Republican" she is not. A Republican, yes -- a Southampton Republican, no.

It was clear in the debates that she hadn't bothered to check out readily available background on Southampton issues, and kept referring to her up-island experience in a series ...more
By fidelis (199), westhampton beach on Oct 24, 11 8:51 PM
This camp has not been in operation for many years.... It was a defunct tennis club! It is pre-existing non conforming on residentially zoned land.
This is why the neighbors are so upset! Would you like more traffic and Majors Path to be widened? Would you like school buses going up and down Major's Path, Mary's Lane, North Sea Mecox Road? The camp charges about $8000.00 per child per summer - It is not for local children - It is sad to see this happen to one of the areas of the town ...more
By Legal Immigrant (11), Southampton on Oct 24, 11 8:03 PM
Give me a break! No matter what you want to do somebody has to pitch a bitch about it!
By johnnyhampton (82), Southampton on Oct 24, 11 9:35 PM
1 member liked this comment
It was a camp and it would bring jobs and money to the area. But a lawsuit? That does not seem necessary.
By SHNative (554), Southampton on Oct 24, 11 10:27 PM
Unfortunately that has not been the case in East Hampton. An entire motel is rented for staff - Surely not all local people are hired. Look at the website most of the staff comes from up island

By Legal Immigrant (11), Southampton on Oct 25, 11 7:56 PM
Jacobs website states counselors are hired from all over the world and he is turning the little 1-2 person cottages on the site into dormitories -- according to his plan application. So, maybe the gardner and pool guy will be local. But not the camp staff.
By lindsaybee (4), Southampton on Oct 27, 11 10:55 AM
1 member liked this comment
For a few summer months I lived on Little Fresh Pond Road 30+ years ago when the tennis club was there. I could hear the thump of tennis balls etc. But so what? That's what summer is about. Summer is about kids playing outdoors having fun and hey, it's called excercise! Yes, I am sick of seeing the 'people from away' always complaining, like 'they're taking something from me'. Well, you bought a house in a cheap area. What else do you expect? You didn't buy on Ox Pasture Road or you didn't ...more
By summertime (589), summerfield fl on Oct 24, 11 10:49 PM
It's residential property. Not commercial. If you could hear tennis balls from LFP Road then you couldn't possibly begin to imagine how much noise 500 screaming kids & whistles will sound like. Laws only protect rich people? Nice.
By East End 2 (151), Southampton on Oct 25, 11 5:15 PM
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The NIMBYs have certainly escalated and probably exaggerated the purported impact of a ten week day camp in their area. The key to the matter at hand, however, is whether this is indeed a frivolous SLAPP lawsuit or a well founded case of defamation of character. Without citations from the alleged LFPA flyers and some fact checking we have nothing but conclusion leaping with the normal dose of partisan BS here. Unfortunately, I don't suppose we could get Snopes to chime in.
By VOS (1241), WHB on Oct 25, 11 1:01 AM
Intimidation tactics are not uncommon when applicants to Town Boards come to believe that they "own" them and can get whatever they want whenever they want it. This, I believe, was a misconception of the developer of Tuckahoe Main Street Mall. Our Town Council heard the dissatisfaction of local residents who were sick and tired of campaign contributions greasing the skids of approval before regulatory boards in Southampton. The result? A resounding "no" to the developer. It is high time that ...more
By Dodger (161), Southampton Village on Oct 25, 11 9:41 AM
Jay Jacobs is trying to intimidate and destroy the opposition to his project by hitting its leaders with an enormous SLAPP suit. He's obviously scared he's losing. The small homeowners association has been using facts to battle him in the press and at town hall meetings, so he's decided to try to silence them by crushing them with an expensive lawsuit. When the rich arrogantly abuse their power like this, it makes me understand the frustration of the Occupy Wall Street crowd. I'm sending pizzas!
By goldenrod (505), southampton on Oct 25, 11 11:37 AM
You'll love this excerpt from Taibbi's latest blog, "OWS' Beef: Wall St. Isn't Winning - It's Cheating".

"...inequities are what drive the OWS protests. People don't want handouts. It's not a class uprising and they don't want civil war -- they want just the opposite. They want everyone to live in the same country, and live by the same rules. It's amazing that some people think that that's asking a lot."
Oct 25, 11 3:24 PM appended by Mr. Z
"At last count, there were 245 millionaires in congress, including 66 in the Senate."
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Oct 25, 11 3:24 PM
If it can be guaranteed that there will be no negative impact on Little Fresh, and scale the thing back a bit, it will provide summer jobs to the local youth (I hope) as counselors, etc.

However, why such a grand scale? The size proposed is ridiculous for the site, IMO. Must everything in "The Hamptons" be excessive, and gargantuan?

Oh, wait, I almost forgot the personality type we're dealing with...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Oct 25, 11 3:58 PM
Way to swing this topic towards your support of the OWS FLEABAGGERS ZZZZ! Those bums need to quit their bitchfest and go to work. Start at the bottom and work your way up, that's the American way. Their sense of entitlement makes no sense.
As to the topic at hand, the developer is overplaying his hand and has turned public opinion against him personally and by default, the whole project. Town Board members, approve this at the risk of your career in local politics.
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Oct 25, 11 4:17 PM
There is a MAJOR sense of entitlement, when it comes to CEO compensation. Not just by disparity, but when compared to EVERY OTHER FOREIGN CORPORATION OUTSIDE THE U.S., including Japan. They all take FAR LESS from their companies, by comparison.

These people don't play by the same rules. If you wised up, maybe you'd notice.

And, there is no intentional "swing". Just sharing with goldenrod, and it's an A-B conversation, so C your way out...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Oct 25, 11 4:22 PM
I too would like to hear what the Dem candidates think about this egregious lawsuit and the whole town board!
By maggieb (11), sag harbor on Oct 25, 11 5:02 PM
I think that we are forgetting what the camp is for and that any child attends the camp comes away with such a great time to lean,grow into young adults.
Mr Jacobs give out many scholerships to alot of local kids in East Hampton,Sag Harbor,and surrounding areas.I want to thank him and his great staff for another great summer learning how to cook,sports,use cameras
and many new friend from all walks of life more things that are offered at camp.
It is the same old story of not in my ...more
By taxpayer1 (72), Southampton on Oct 25, 11 6:42 PM
Then we suggest you invite Mr. Jacobs to build his camp next to your home, in your neighborhood. Or he can find a nice commercial property where his money machine, I mean camp, won't bother anyone or stain the environment. Westhampton Airport anyone?
By East End 2 (151), Southampton on Oct 25, 11 9:11 PM
East End,I have a highway,fire,ambulance barn near me and lets not forget all the air planes etc etc.The camp is a great investment to our kids and it is only in operation for ten weeks, and yes they do make money and they do spread it around.I guess you do not work for free and why should they.
By taxpayer1 (72), Southampton on Oct 26, 11 9:09 PM
I'm sorry, but that was your choice to live where you do. Nobody forced that noise on you. FWIW if you live next to all that racket I very much suspect you are not someone who can afford the $1,200-$1,500 a week Jacobs camp will cost you.
By East End 2 (151), Southampton on Oct 26, 11 10:37 PM
East End,thats correct nobody forced noise on me and i did have a choice where i live and where i send my children to camp and what i can afford is not your worry,its my familys and we would not care if a camp was next door to us,again we all need jobs and here is a place that will hire all great people to teach (OUR future ) kids, who will join the work force and could be our next mayors,trustees,doctors,cops,landscapers,voluteer ambolance or fireman.
By taxpayer1 (72), Southampton on Oct 27, 11 3:09 PM
The key phrase in your rant is "their companies" ZZZZ. They can and should pay themselves whatever they want, as long as they are turning a profit and paying dividends to their shareholders. Your jealousy and class warfare Demokrat talking points are starting to sound like a broken record.
How can Jacobs be a real Deomkrat? I thought they were anti-capitalism after they backed the FLEABAGGERS.
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Oct 26, 11 6:23 AM
Ummm. NO.

You have to be the most short sighted fool I have ever encountered when it comes to establishing a sustainable society.

By taking what you feel entitled to, you don't really earn what you deserve, and thus broker millions into unemployment, and poverty.

You are not only an oligarchist at heart, but a fiscal anarhist in theory.
Oct 26, 11 7:55 PM appended by Mr. Z
Pardon. "anarchist".
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Oct 26, 11 7:55 PM
"Bad political systems on their own don't always make societies fail. Sometimes what's required for a REAL social catastrophe, is for one, or two ingeniously obnoxious individuals to rise to a position of great power. Get a one in a BILLION a**hole in the wrong job, and a merely unfair system of government suddenly turns into 70's Guatemala, the Serbian despotate, the 'modern' United States."

Former Federal Reserve Chief Alan Greenspan, is that one in a billion a**hole, who made America ...more
Oct 27, 11 1:17 AM appended by Mr. Z
Greenspan's rise to the top, is one of the great scams of our time. His career is the perfect prism, through which one can see the two-fold basic deception of American politics. A system that preaches "sink or swim" "laissez faire" capitalism to most, but acts as a highly interventionist, bureaucratic welfare state for a select few. Greenspan pompously preached ruthless, free market orthodoxy every chance he got, while simultaneously using all the powers of the state, to protect his wealthy patrons from those same market forces. A perfectly two faced man, serving a perfectly two faced state. If you can see through him, the rest is easy...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Oct 27, 11 1:17 AM
Partner up with Sandy Hollow or better yet put that money into using leaves & other natural goods to produce recycled plates, cups & utensils for other camps in long island. Find something better to do with your money like putting it into healing the earth because your beach house property won't be standing very long if you don't get your morals straight. Leave the pond alone. :) Climate change is in effect, money is only paper and mother nature doesn't care about how much paper you have. :)
By SwtMermaid (2), Southampton on Oct 26, 11 10:59 AM
1 member liked this comment
The 10% is not the majority, however, they do take the majority of society's purchasing rectangles, for them to "use"...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Oct 27, 11 1:35 AM
poor USA ...frivolous lawsuits are NOT the way...and anyone with any common sense would see that Little Fresh is too crowded for such a facility...and the character that wants to profit by a communities loss is a democratic leader? what farce...
By Vikki K (490), Southampton on Oct 26, 11 3:35 PM

Welcome to the forum.
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Oct 26, 11 7:56 PM
As much as I abhor going "off topic" to begin a thread, do yourselves a favor, and Google "JFK New Frontier speech".

It will lead you to the 1960 Democratic National Convention address he delivered on July 15, of that year.

Do yourselves a favor, and delineate the crux of his speech, then compare ti to the "modern day".

What I thought was, "My, how little things have changed...".
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Oct 27, 11 1:40 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By Turkey Bridge (1979), Quiogue on Oct 29, 11 12:25 PM
Are we to infer that you think that Ms. Fleming's statement is so incredible that we should go vote for her? Sounds like lawyer-speak, and we have more than enough of that everywhere you look in politics. On the camp = this ding-dong's reputation is not worth anywhere near $65 million dollars but it sure is like a delirious democrat who mentally lives in a mythical land where everything he says is a NYT headline to think so. Why isn't he on ATH's video?
By Local 43 (19), Southampton on Oct 30, 11 6:54 AM
OK ZZZZZZ: In your worker's paradise, how would the financial system work? Specifics please, not leftist talking points, thanks.
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Oct 30, 11 10:48 AM
By Providence, you can be an a$$. I think I'd really enjoy swappping your soul, with a Rwandan Tutsi, and see how well you fare. If there is one thing evolution proves, is that specialization usually promises extinction.

"We" can start by creating total, complete separation of personnel in the employ of the SEC and Wall St. You are either a cop, or you aren't. You don't switch sides to work for the highest bidder. No more centralized "too big to fail". Lots of little banks, are safer, ...more
Oct 31, 11 1:58 PM appended by Mr. Z
SLAPP. Also, remember the words of Lord Acton, and what is money in this world, but power incarnate? Seems to most of us, that "he who has the gold, makes the rules" these days...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Oct 31, 11 1:58 PM
1 member liked this comment
Nonsense, it doesn't take all of us working together in the world. that's the beautiful thing, the sun is setting and the moon rising despite what you do. Your problem is trying to create order in a world based on chaos. You better learn to live with the chaos.
By Local 43 (19), Southampton on Oct 31, 11 2:57 PM
Depends on how you define "world", now doesn't it?

The earth will most likely turn for 2.5 billion more years, and the sun will be a burnt out husk of iron in about 4.5. Sure, that's going to happen no matter what.

No society, corporation, or even goverment functions properly with the burden squarely on one man's shoulders. Anything producing "success", on a grand scale requires a team. One man, cannot do everything success on a large scale not only requires, but normally demands.

If ...more
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Oct 31, 11 5:44 PM
Councilwoman Bridget Fleming was asked to comment on the defamation lawsuit filed against the Association officers. She said:

"Although anyone who speaks publicly has the responsibility to be truthful, lawsuits that limit free speech are not appropriate. It is particularly important when community members have concerns about environmental impacts that they should not be afraid to speak out. I am hopeful that some of the emotion will be ratcheted down and that the lawsuit will not be ...more
By Turkey Bridge (1979), Quiogue on Oct 31, 11 12:05 PM
Turkey, that's silly and I'm scratching my head as to why you can't see it. There is no substance there at all! In fact the LA Crip named Rodney King said it better "Can't We All Just Get Along?" Equally simplistic and showing that there is very little difference between the mentality of a LA Crip and an politically slanted attorney.
By Local 43 (19), Southampton on Oct 31, 11 3:36 PM
Local, I don't get you. Fleming's statement is basically saying what the SLAPP law says, no phoney lawsuits to shut people up. In the 2nd part, she's not saying let's all get along, she's saying the planning board and the ZBA are where this belongs. Learn to read English.
By clam pie (161), Westhampton on Oct 31, 11 5:19 PM
Since when is learning to read English worthy of a zinger? I'm in a protected class now and Fleming would be the first to explain that to you. Your name is clam pie, let's say we don't get each other. Ms. Fleming has tendered her comments to protect the boss. You were forced to use the word ''basically'' because its lawyer/politician speak. And, its lightweight and meant not to really state anything or to offend anyone because its "lite".
By Local 43 (19), Southampton on Nov 1, 11 7:20 AM
Yo, I wasn't forced to use 'basically'. Take it out if you like, I don't care. Doesn't look to me like Fleming is protecting the guy who sued when she says his suit is 'not appropriate' and people shouldn't be afraid to speak out. Again, learn to read English.
By clam pie (161), Westhampton on Nov 2, 11 11:35 AM
local43, your agenda is showing. Fleming said the suit is "NOT APPROPRIATE" Period. Your accusation is baseless and false. By the way, your comment regarding "LA Crips" is sheer lunacy.
By progressnow (556), sag harbor on Nov 2, 11 12:02 PM
OK ZZZZ: I'm with you on your first and third points. Taking the lobbyists out of the equation would be a good thing for all conerned. Too big to fail was a load of bovine excrement and bailing out those banks and businesses was a waste of OUR money and resulted in Obama Motors, hmm government owning the means of production, where have we read that before?
I still don't think the rich are the problem , but we'll have to agree to disagree on that for now.
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Oct 31, 11 4:31 PM
It's not the "rich" that are the problem. That's just too general.

The problem is disparity, or income inequality. Our infrastructure is in the toilet, but no one wants to pay taxes, because our government is a failure at regulation, enforcement, and responsibility at the Federal, and State level. Why, in a country so "great", do we get a D- score on bridges, and highways.

One part of the problem, is the low value placed on the "common man", by the "elite". Sure, there should ...more
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Oct 31, 11 5:52 PM
"Income inequality" That should be a motivating factor, not a problem.
Unless someone is mentally challenged, there's no reasonnot to succeed.
No disputes the neccessity of paying taxes, the rub comes when OUR MONEY is pissed away on worthless programs and redundant beuracratic departments, eg. department of education, federal and state. We are over regulated, I agree with you on that point too.
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Nov 1, 11 11:44 AM
What sheer ignorance.
By progressnow (556), sag harbor on Nov 1, 11 12:38 PM
2 members liked this comment
And WHY are those programs even initiated?


Those programs are the recourse that remains, when the "elite" wholly undervalue the people that make their existence possible.

Your intellectual prowess, is simply STUNNING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Nov 2, 11 9:01 PM
OK, since I was mean, now I'll be nice. Good thing I have some horns, to hold that accursed halo up.

Everything in nature is about balance. I could lecture on, and on, ad infinitum about balance. However, that would not be succint. You are correct about a "motivating factor", and hardship is a good one. The most endearing, and educational part of History, is "daily life". Not just facts, events, names, and dates, but how society lived through the centuries.

To read about ...more
Nov 2, 11 9:14 PM appended by Mr. Z
And, I'm being archaic, y'dig?
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Nov 2, 11 9:14 PM
Maybe, I should have said "into", not on.

Oh, well. You pick the vernacular.
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Nov 2, 11 9:22 PM
You probably with the FLEABAGGERS Progress, impossible to have a battle of wits with an unarmed opponant.
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Nov 1, 11 3:54 PM
bigfresh, you're not helping your cause by incorrectly spelling words while in an arguement claiming to have superior wits. It is entertaining, however. Try spellcheck next time.
By AlwaysLocal (292), southampton on Nov 1, 11 5:01 PM
2 members liked this comment
No matter the system throughout History, the single greatest contributory factor toward failure has been the same thing:


Sheer ignorance, on your part, to not have wised up to that by now...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Nov 2, 11 8:58 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Nov 12, 11 11:50 AM