Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Poor New York City and State Leadership for Hurricane Sandy?

Personally, I find it disgraceful that America's preeminent city is virtually shut down for an entire week because the MTA (the subway system) is not running due to a severe rain storm.  This does not seem to happen in other American or world cities.

Frankly, foreigners who come to New York City are often shocked and disgusted when they see New York City's subway system.  It is quite dirty, old, falling apart and filled with rats. The signals often fail, leaving trains standing still in tunnels for short periods of time.  Over the past winter, an entire train was stuck on an elevated track for an entire night with hundreds of people inside. 

The MTA has obviously been neglected for decades while riders are forced to pay higher and higher fares each year. Now the results of this neglect are evident.

The New York Times has pointed out that months ago it ran a story in which experts stated that New York City has NOT prepared for the type of storm that recently hit it.

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/nyt-september-york-city-lagging-flood-protections-142613424.html

http://news.yahoo.com/bad-yorks-subway-looking-grim-140645061.html;_ylt=ApTDckmoHEAqmdBEnPgRnLiZCMZ_;_ylu=X3oDMTVxNnVnNG12BGNjb2RlA2dtcHRvcDEwMDBwb29sd2lraXVwcmVzdARtaXQDQXJ0aWNsZSBNaXhlZCBMaXN0IE5ld3MgZm9yIFlvdSB3aXRoIE1vcmUgTGluawRwa2cDZjA3MTY4YWYtMzk1NC0zYmY1LThjZDYtNmQ1NjNhNWZmYzkwBHBvcwMxBHNlYwNuZXdzX2Zvcl95b3UEdmVyAzZlNzFmNTAwLTIzNjQtMTFlMi04YmY5LTc3YmY1OTk1YmJmMA--;_ylg=X3oDMTMzbWNjZGx0BGludGwDdXMEbGFuZwNlbi11cwRwc3RhaWQDN2EyYzZjNzctMWE2Zi0zMmI4LTkwOTgtYjVhZDYyNTg5YjExBHBzdGNhdANibG9nc3x0aGVsb29rb3V0BHB0A3N0b3J5cGFnZQ--;_ylv=3

1)  Although Hurricane Sandy was a large storm, based on the above articles, do you believe that city and state leaders should have been better prepared for this situation?

2)  What should be done to avert (avoid) another mess like this?

3)  Do these stories affect your impression of New York City?  In the movies the city is usually portrayed as clean and efficient.  How does the city seem after reading these articles?

4)  Do you feel that New Yorkers should be upset that they may have to sit at home for a week doing nothing while the MTA tries to fix its problems? Is this the way a major world city should operate?

(Today it took me 5 hours to travel from Queens to Manhattan to meet a couple students.  I literally walked from 125th and Lexington to 53rd and Lexington, because I realized I could walk faster than the buses were traveling.)

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