What Blogs Are Good At

Rich Wilkins has a post up on the end of the NIZ debate and how blogs – specifically the Bernie O’Hare blog – make a difference.

What a blog is good for is moving issues and perspectives out of the “sphere of deviance” and into the “sphere of legitimate debate.”

Basically, politicians only want to talk about the things they want to talk about, and the media only want to cover what politicians want to talk about, or cover criticism from official credentialed sources.

How a good blog works is by taking issue positions/arguments from outside this narrow range of acceptable positions, and pushing them onto the radar of:

1. politicians and political staffers
2. journalists
3. partisan political operatives and influentials

To have any effect, your blog posts need to be directed at one of these groups. Do not make the mistake of thinking that you are doing general voter education. Unless you have the readership the size of a daily newspaper, this is impossible.

OH NOES!! Not Corner Store Businesses!

I really can’t believe any Bethlehem politicians are taking these clowns seriously. There is no reason for the zoning ordinance to say what people can do inside their own property in the downtown area, or who can buy or rent buildings there.

That Bethlehem is not even considering a form-based code at this point is embarrassing enough, but the fact that any politicians are actually thinking about amending the proposed zoning ordinance to pacify these NIMBY whiners is completely absurd.

Let people do what they want on their own property. If these people don’t want to live in a neighborhood with a financial consulting business or a bar or whatever, they can always move, and fetch quite a bit of money for their property as evidenced by the very high selling prices.