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« Update Before Taking Office and a Chance To Say Thank You | Main | Reviewing the Capital Budget - Controlling Debt »

August 11, 2011


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I think perhaps people don't fully understand the broken windows policy and could benefit from some more explanation of it. Some discussion of places where it has been implemented and found useful could be helpful as well. Personally, I'm a fan of it.

Hieronymous Knickerbocker

I am no great fan of Rudy Giuliani, but his reign of autocracy as New York City's mayor did effectively target the "broken window" issues.

I refer to such things as graffiti, vandalism, panhandling, ditched bicycles, squeegee men (maybe not part of the Madison experience), etc. Taken individually, each is a small affront to society, but left unattended they accumulate and invite further antisocial behavior, until they are a real drag on the quality of life.

New York's approach was to make sure everyone, however homeless, was assured a bed and a meal. The price of that was no panhandling, extorting money from motorists stopped at traffic lights, or sleeping on steam grates. The sustained effort (it is still in place) went much beyond those things, but you get the idea.

Mr. Giuliani was a bully and not squeamish about stepping on anyone's rights, but when he put his toes over the foul line, he was taken to court (this is a very litigious town) -- where the city usually lost, and the policy was ultimately modified.

Making that policy stick produced dramatic improvements in the way New Yorkers perceived their city. I have no idea what the municipal outlay was for all this, but the approach surely paid handsome dividends in the long run.

Teresa Doyle

I just read the piece that you quoted from above and then I found that you were blogging here and that you quoted from it.

All I remember was Mayor Dave Cieslewicz running on the theme that there is not a crime problem in Madison.

You crystalize the descriptions of those talking to the Cap Times writer, Paul Funlund's quoting passive agressive whisperers unwilling to be named as gossip.

Tonight, Madison's chief of Police who is African American said that he notes that the males in caught in these attacks around the city are African American.

This same night Joan (who graduated from the UW and is a regular on MSNBC) told Ed Schultz that 50 percent of African American male teenagers are unemployed.

I am glad you are mayor. So is my 83 year old mother who has a wicked math brain.

David Marshall

My perception is that we are experiencing more police presence (sirens and all). Where does one find the details of such police activity? I have been hearing and seeing a lot of activity that citizens might want to be aware of. I suppose one could blame this lack of public relations on the ex-mayor, but still a want for transparency persists. Are we regarded as adults who want the best for our families and community or frightened children who need to be insulated?

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