Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Four Scenarios, A Play in One Act for People who Know About Newport Development

[Sharon and Diane exit the Planning Commission Meeting, where Bill Stenger, great benefactor of the Newport masses, has just outlined how he will provide JOBS which graciously allow the poor residents of Newport to clean the rooms of wealthy tourists at wages they can't live on.]

Sharon: [Whose life experience involves many years without a fixed address on the streets of D.C. and things haven't been very rosy since either]: I'm with them. Those places on that block aren't fit for human habitation. There's bedbugs and all manner of vermin and the place they give you with one room and a toilet nobody should have to live in. They should tear 'em all down, and then maybe they could rent them to poor folks, who'd have a decent place to live.

Diane: Well that's not what they have in mind...[drowned out by Sharon going on about how lovely the new apartments would be.] SHARON, LISTEN---They just want to rent them to rich people, all the poor people will have to move somewhere else.

Sharon: Well that's the plan they have, but maybe they won't be able to rent them all, then they'll be glad to get a steady renter at any rent, who won't trash the place and they won't have to keep putting it on the market. Hell, maybe they won't be able to rent them at all.

Diane: I've thought of that. I've thought of that. That's Scenario Number 2. Scenario Number 1 is that everything goes as they have planned and all the poor people have to go somewhere else and just have to come in to wait on tables and clean the rooms. Scenario Number 2 is that it flops. It's bad if it flops when there's just a big hole in the ground, but if it flops later, we have a lot of nice places for people to live that they can't rent so have to rent at low rates. That's good for poor people. Personally, I think it will flop.

Sharon: There should be a mix of apartments, some subsidized and some for the movie stars and glamorous ones, they should push to equalize that, with all the nice furbishments for people with low incomes next door to the millionaires and such so the poor people have a decent place to live...

Diane: SHARON, have you ever seen, is there anybody...

Sharon: They'd be happy to get people in who just pay the rent along with big spenders...

Diane: Sharon, there's nobody in Newport with the guts to demand that. That's Scenario Number 3, where we demand that they provide subsidized housing along side the nice apartments. But our spineless City Council, the quivering Planning Commission, nobody has the guts to ask this. That would be great, best for everybody, but they're all such idiots....

Sharon: Then there's Scenario Number 4.

Diane: There is no Number 4 . There's three scenarios, that's it.

Sharon: Scenario Number 4, where we tear down the whole  system.

Diane: I suppose that involves pitchforks and torches.

Sharon: Yeah, pitchforks and torches. Goodnight Diane. Don't stay up too late.

Diane: Goodnight Sharon. See ya later.

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