Archive for February, 2007

Open Space Twixt Ears

It’s Jane Jacobs week here at The Bellows, folks, so please bear with me while I explore some urban design concepts. Exhibit. Raleigh developers are trying to get the city to relax open space requirements, and the city’s planning commission is all no, open spaces are the something lifeblood of the something. Jane Jacobs has […]

Know Who Else Is Nuts? Vincent Freaking Orange

Former Councilman Vincent Orange responds to news of soaring property assessments in Brentwood by claiming credit for the increase, pointing to his baby, the Brentwood Shopping Center. A reasonable person might ask how a low density, mid-to-down market commuter shopping center might have rejuvenated the neighborhood. They might also ask why it’s taken so damn […]

Pretty Words Light Up

First, there was the Hold Steady. Now, this (and this and this and this and god knows how many other freaks are out there). Question: when reading the dead tree paper, do you run your finger along the text? Murmur the words under your breath? Am I wrong to think that you all are deeply […]


I probably shouldn’t admit this, as much as I write about cities, but I’m currently making my way through the first Jane Jacobs’ book I’ve ever picked up (The Death and Life of Great American Cities). It’s a very enjoyable read but also a trying one; again and again Jacobs makes clear how evident it […]

One Man, One Vote?

As someone who cares a great deal about urban areas and urban policy, I often find myself idly seething at the distribution of political power in this country. I certainly understand why the Senate and Electoral College came to be as they are, but it’s striking to think of how incredibly vast the disparities in […]


It’s ridiculous, of course, that Richmond is unable to agree to a tax increase to fund transportation improvements. I would argue, however, that using future general fund money to pay back a transportation bond might not be all that bad. Good transportation infrastructure is an investment, and borrowing to spend money on needed projects should […]

Stay Out of My Hemisphere

You know, I’d never really thought about whether or not I might want to have a doctrine. Under most circumstances, I’m not sure you’d want to count on me for something as piddling as a rule of thumb. But now that Matt has one, I want my own. I need an Avent Doctrine. Something really […]


The News and Observer brings word this morning that my beloved alma mater is in trouble for hosting an evangelist who told students to avoid Muslims. Check this out: “He basically told us Muslims were bad and we should convert to Christianity,” said Alyssa Kaszycki, 14, of Cary, who heard Solomon during a freshman seminar […]


Seeing as how Dean Baker wasn’t too offended by my name calling to leave a comment on the post below, I figure I should at least explain why I think his opposition to intellectual property rights is wrong. Primarily, because he seems to believe that supply and demand aren’t important concepts where IP is concerned. […]

The Prospect

Ezra writes: The March issue of The American Prospect is out, and with it, my feature profile of John Edwards. We’ve talked about him a lot on this blog, but I’ve actually held back most of my opinions, saving them for this piece. The catch, though, is that it’s behind the subscription wall. So if […]