Adrian: Closing Time

Nov 4, 2016

If there’s one refrain I’ve heard over and over again for the last month it’s “I can’t wait for this election to be over.” Well we’ve finally arrived at closing time.

At the national level there’ve been numerous unprecedented and unwanted firsts this year. Suffice to say that the Presidential election gives us clear and distinct choices between the Democratic and Republican candidates, with a healthy dose of skepticism about the future of our Country. Trump’s closing argument boils down to charges of corruption, fueled by a lack of transparency. Clinton’s end game consists of letting Trump flail in the political quicksand in the hope that he’ll sink.

In the gubernatorial races, we’re indeed fortunate to live in Vermont where attack ads are still distained and the candidates themselves treat each other with respect. In endorsements throughout the State, newspapers have repeatedly pointed out that both Minter and Scott are well regarded and competent. Scott’s final pitch will be to convince Vermonters that he doesn’t take orders from the national party and that he can move us forward economically, while at the same time not backslide on any important social issues. Minter will try to seal the deal by convincing the public that she’s not just a clone of the sitting governor and that she can move the State forward socially more quickly and more efficiently in respect to the economy than her opponent.

In Burlington, the Administration of Mayor Weinberger, supported by a multi-partisan coalition of Progressive, Republican, Democratic and Independent City Councilors and a panoply of civic organizations, is supporting changes to the zoning regulations to allow for redevelopment of the jargony-sounding Downtown Mixed Use Core Overlay District. Pro-initiative groups are asking for a yes vote on the ballot items regarding approval of a bond request and changes to Burlington’s zoning ordinance.

Weinberger’s wind up is the promise of more affordable housing and sustainable retail, while using all the tax money generated to pay for public infrastructure. Groups against the initiative have characterized it as ill-formed and beneficial to a select few, but I wish their final lap had included more about actual alternatives.

All of which reminds me of a song by the band Semisonic that goes, “I know who I want to take me home.”

“Closing time,” the song continues, when “Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.”