Thursday, April 19, 2012

For the intellectually curious imaginative residents of Brunswick…..

We post this item with all the humility we can muster, which most of you will say is negligible.  None-the-less, we are proud of our humility, and we will continue to remind you of it.

The item we will link you to is a ‘study’ we performed in 2007.  It assesses the circumstances surrounding Brunswick’s plan for building a new school, at the same time a sizable segment of the local population would be exiting the area.  We put substantial effort into the document, both in time and compilation of reference data.  We still look at it as a relevant commentary on local circumstances; we see nothing recently that has rendered it any less relevant than it was when first published.

We were stimulated to post this item for your study because of the public statement we commented on here.  Until proven otherwise, we choose to believe the speaker is responsible enough to want to become as well informed as possible.  We’ll see if that is the case; the least she can do is let us know that she found our effort, and is taking it under advisement. 

She is free to comment here, as opposed to Brunswick Community United, which for some reason does not allow feedback on their web site.  It must be an oversight.

While the document is quite lengthy, we suggest that these passages are the most meaningful in our situation today:

The most vocal activists in Maine are those who are fundamentally anti-growth for one reason or another. Maine has nearly the worst economy and business climate in the nation, and our region will be hit with an economic calamity when BNAS closes. The age group least affected by these factors are retirees, who appear to be the only growing demographic in the state.

Many believe that Brunswick is somehow immune from these facts and trends. A recent commentary in the Times Record contained this quote: “With base redevelopment and the physical attractiveness of this area — proximity to Portland and Boston — the signs are already in place for enormous growth (emphasis mine) that forward-thinking people have already recognized.” I know of no credible evidence or logic for accepting that Brunswick is poised for enormous growth, nor more importantly, of a civic will to welcome such growth. If public discussion of such matters in recent years is any indication, the exact opposite is the case.

“The reality is that the local military population exhibits a virtually non-aging profile, and it is concentrated in the school aged dependent demographic. More important is that regardless of the disposition of the government and private housing vacated on their departure, it is foolhardy to assume that housing will be filled by a civilian population with the same consequences for our school system as the military population.”

You can find the subject document here, and we hope you will give us the honor of giving it your consideration.

Bursting bubbles doesn’t do much to make you popular.  But that’s fine with us; popularity is our least concern.  We’re much more interested in honest discourse and clear understanding of reality.

Even if the majority isn’t.

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