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May 1, 2010

Radio show State of the Re:Union's lame take on Atlantic Yards: "Isn't any job better than none?"

Atlantic Yards Report

Here are the money quotes from the public radio show State of the Re: Union and its Atlantic Yards segment, courtesy of host Al Letson. (The show will run on WNYC this weekend but is available online.)

Letson's not so much a journalist--his bio reads "Renaissance Man: Playwright/Performance Poet/Public Radio Host-Producer"--so analysis is less important than feeling. Indeed, the name Forest City Ratner is never mentioned in the segment, which lasts less than 13 minutes.

Letson said on the Brian Lehrer Show yesterday that he came in against eminent domain but emerged with a more nuanced sense of the controversy. Yes, he's sincere, but his takeaway is shallow:

But those who oppose Atlantic Yards will tell you that the jobs are a pipe dream, that the work created won't be sustainable middle-class building careers, and they may be right, but I wonder if it matters. In these tough times, when families are losing their homes and unemployment is through the roof, isn't any job better than none?

Isn't any job better than none? Well, no, because enormous public subsidies might be used to create more jobs and more housing.

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Posted by steve at May 1, 2010 8:35 AM