Author name: imc-editor

Do more police really mean less crime?


When President Bill Clinton vowed to put 100,000 more cops on the streets, it was a very popular program. But did it result in safer streets and towns? Not according to at least one study that looked at the issue:

“Some criminologists find no evidence that the new cops did anything to lower the level of mayhem. A study by John Worrall and Tomislav Kovandzic of the University of Texas at Dallas, published this year in the journal Criminology, concluded that “COPS grants had no discernible effect on serious crime.” A 2005 report by the Government Accountability Office disagreed, but said the effect was very small. About 95 percent of the decline in crime in the 1990s, it said, was attributable to other factors.” (

Calling for more police is still popular politics whether there is evidence for it or not. It plays on the fears of voters– fear of outsiders, people different from ourselves. That allows us to be manipulated by politicians who promise a safer Binghamton. But guess what? Crime prevention is more about the economy, jobs, education, people who care about young people.

TC Maker’s Space Open


About Us:
Triple Cities Makerspace, Inc. is a collective work and collaboration space that aims to bring together hackers, makers, artists, creatives, geeks, and technology enthusiasts. We have a space and are holding weekly meetings. Please feel free to stop by a meeting and check it out; we are looking for new members.
If you are a creative person, regardless of skill set or age, we would be glad to have you.

website at and check out facebook page.

I still want ______ in Binghamton!

Seems like everyone wants our opinion about Binghamton and Broome Co. Notably, blueprint binghamton


have been surveying residents for a new 10 year strategic plan. Broome County is also looking to revise its Comprehensive Plan, although they have not yet tried to engage citizens.

But there is a homegrown effort that has sprung up in a few places in the most blight ridden neighborhoods, targeting feedback from children. To see the first round of stickers and chalked messages go to this previous story: I want in binghamton
Later messages included: “A restaurant or art gallery,” “Help Getting Artists Noticed”, and an “excited message from a stage hand union member, ‘I have an incredibly good idea for this building.'” See attached photo with the ideas for a “2nd hand guitar school” and music school for kids.

Previously, some children debated between “an arcade” or “an ice cream store” with some voting for a “Sweet Frog” the new yogurt store on the southside.

The “I want ____in my neighborhood” is an urban planning device that was created by a young planner in New Orleans and shared by a group called Neighborland. See

Happiness Project Strikes Again!

The Happiness Project has issued two new images in the series of vintage photos posted on vacant buildings. The life-sized black and white images are of people who appear to be spontaneously “happy.” One is of “Maggie and Aggie” Long and shows an older woman leaning into her beloved granddaughter who is holding a doll. The other new poster is of a suffrage rally and is from the Library of Congress collection. Pictured are Rose Sanderson with the trumpet, and also, Elsie McKenzie (L) and Elisabeth Freeman (R); all three are clearly excited and having fun.

The anonymous project organizers are careful to post only on boarded up buildings or with permission, and in a temporary way. “This is as much about re-populating abandoned buildings as it is about art and history,” according to a statement sent to the Binghamton Bridge. On some of the same buildings another project has appeared asking people for their opinion. The stickers “I want _______in my neighborhood.” give residents a way to let others know how they would prefer their neighborhoods to look. (See related story on this site.)

The Happiness Project has captured some attention from residents as well as nationally, especially as a topic of conversation on the Facebook site, “I’m from Binghamton.”

The Happiness Project also requests vintage images that include more diversity in race, age, etc. The Binghamton Bridge will act as a conduit for messages: email

I want _______in Binghamton

An urban planning device that was created by a young planner in New Orleans and shared by a group called Neighborland has come to Binghamton. Stickers that say “I want ____in my neighborhood.” and Chalkboards that say, “What do you want to see here?” are on four boarded up buildings in Binghamton NY. (Eldredge St., Upper Chenango St., Court and Carroll Sts, and Court St near RiverRead Books).

The feedback has been immediate. Some of the stickers say, “A bigger pool that is open on weekends.” “An ice cream store.” “Jobs.” “Parks for kids.” “A monorail.” “A chance to escape poverty.” “Dreams to Come True.” “A garden.”

Bob Johnston Photo Competition Winners Announced

The Cooperative Gallery 213 and the Two Rivers Photography Club are sponsoring the 2nd Bob Johnston Photo Show and Competition January 4 – 26th, 2013. This Memorial Exhibit is a tribute to the art embodied in the photography of Bob Johnston, a founding member of the gallery who died in 2010. Thirty one photographers entered the Competition in either Color or Black and White categories. Photographs will be judged by Kirk and Leslie Van Zandbergen of Van Zandbergen Photography, guided by this sentiment from Bob Johnston’s artist’s statement: “For me, the successful photograph is one in which both the abstract elements and the subject matter of the image reinforce each other to provide an emotional experience for the viewer.”
The Best In Show prize goes to Greg Chianis for “Tuscan Storm.” Judges’ Choice Awards in Black and White go to Nancy Basmann for “Louis Mendes” and Sandra Kirker for “The Long Road Home;” The Judges’ Choice in the Color category go to Bill Gorman for “Cardinal” and to Scott Michael Anderson for “Reflection Outside of 213.” Honorable Mentions in Color will be awarded to Joe Trapper for “Wall Flower” and to Sandra Kirker for “Sky Blue and White” and for Black and White to Greg Chianis for “Reflections” and John Rehak for “York Train Station.” Prizes will be distributed at 7 pm at the First Friday Art Walk.

The Happiness Project

A small group of artists has posted a 1940’s picture of a young couple on abandoned structures around Binghamton in an effort to replace the depressing blight with visually interesting images. “We are calling this “The Happiness Project,” said one of the artists, who prefers to remain anonymous, “because the image is so fresh and joyous. We believe that neglected areas in Binghamton need an infusion of happiness and hope.” The artists envision a series of posted photographs that capture the same mood of happiness in diverse subjects.

Many cities have created an atmosphere of support and tolerance for public art often with the result of economic stimulation as people flock to see locally generated creativity in the urban landscape. Public art festivals have popped up in several cities bringing in tourism dollars and revitalizing abandoned buildings. The magazine Juxtapoz (May 2012) published an editorial in support of public art pointing out, “Art simply makes communities better, creating pride and thought provoking discourse.”

The Happiness Project artists further comment: “We see these Happiness posters as an improvement to dilapidated buildings and eyesores, not as a defacement of private property. While these structures are a hallmark of poverty and economic downturn, our spirits need not be impoverished. We are especially interested in local, historic images that remind us of our heritage and sense of place. If fellow citizens want to suggest locations for future enhancement or propose images we encourage them to communicate with us through the site, a progressive community news site that does not log IP addresses. We are not affiliated with any organization or group, but are individuals taking the initiative to make public art in Binghamton.”

Posters have, so far, been spotted on State St., Water St., Clinton St. and Glenwood Ave.

101 Reasons to Ban Fracking


101 Reasons that High-Volume Hydraulic Fracturing (HVHF) Needs to be Banned in New York State
1. If risk to our aquifers were the only reason HVHF needs to be banned, it would be sufficient.
2. If risk to our food quality and supply were the only reason HVHF needs to be banned, it would be sufficient.
3. If risk to our air quality were the only reason HVHF needs to be banned, it would be sufficient.
4. If risk to runaway climate change were the only reason HVHF needs to be banned, it would be sufficient.
5. If HVHF’s externalized costs were the only reason HVHF needs to be banned, it would be sufficient.
6. If the lack of disposal solutions for produced water and drill cuttings were the only reason HVHF needs to be banned, it would be sufficient.
7. If roadways clogged with heavy trucks, moving through established communities were the only reason HVHF needs to be banned, it would be sufficient.
8. If increased crime were the only reason HVHF needs to be banned, it would be sufficient.
9. If increased traffic accidents were the only reason HVHF needs to be banned, it would be sufficient.
10. If jeopardizing the lives of emergency response teams were the only reason HVHF needs to be banned, it would be sufficient.

Local Politics: Sean Massey

Elections all over the country rewarded a progressive agenda. There was a big win for collective bargaining in Ohio. In Buffalo, Democrats unexpectedly won several local seats. The state of Maine repealed a Republican effort to deprive voters rights.

Yet, in Binghamton NY Republicans won the County Executive seat and two Council seats. Regrettably, among them was Sean Massey, Even a prominent Republican said, “I can’t believe he lost. Sean Massey really worked hard and did so much more than anyone else. We won’t see that again.” Sean, who is an assistant professor at Binghamton University, a restaurant owner (Tranquil Bistro), co-chair of the Commission on Downtown Business Development, and an active force in many local organizations, won the seat from Chris Papastrat by a mere 14 votes (if memory recalls) four years ago. On Election Day, Papastrat won it back by a much bigger margin.

Why? Elections are hard to analyze, but it may be that Sean got caught up in an anti-Ryan move, and certainly an anti-incumbent sentiment. Ryan’s tolerance of the Occupy Binghamton movement and earlier support of the Cost of War clock may have added up. According to one canvasser for the Working Families Party, “The voters in that district were angry, out of proportion to their concerns. One was the $3 garbage labels for oversized items, even though it is estimated that it has saved the city $70,000 in the first 9 months in user fees at the landfill. Another concern was money spent on the Southside Commons that some voters felt could have been better spent on road repair.” (The Commons was built by other grant money, however.) “Late ads from the challenger, Chris Papastrat, also seems to have riled people up,” according to this worker. Many voters were troubled by the all Democratic council and Papastrat is seen as an affable, benign, if not overly intellectual figure. And perhaps an anti-gay sentiment swayed some voters as well.

What is clear is that City Council has lost a unifying figure, a very smart policy person, and a true leader. Sean is not going away, but Binghamton has lost his considerable talents as a Council person and that’s really sad.

Susquehanna River has a History of Flooding

Susquehanna River has a History of Flooding
by The Associated Press

An aerial photo shows the flood waters around West Branch of the Susquehanna River and Susquehanna River merging into one in Sunbury, Pa. Nearly 100,000 people from New York to Maryland were ordered to flee the rising Susquehanna River as the remnants of Tropical Storm Lee dumped more rain across the Northeast, closing major highways and socking areas still recovering from Hurricane Irene.

read the rest of the article at

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