I actually think the Repubicans took good care of this town for a very long time – about 300 years. And it shows – the town is beautiful and institutions like the churches and civic groups like Roseland Park, Woodstock Fair; Woodstock Academy, etc. are great. In many ways the town is a model of Republican governance.
And I think the longstanding farm families have a sense of stewardship for the town and the land that is honorable, and also consistent with their economic interests. These major landowners controlled the town’s public and civic institutions for an extremely long time. Whether you call it the “Manure Mafia” or the “Landed Gentry” these were basically the people who had most at stake in the management of the town because they owned its primary economic asset – the land – and controlled its primary industry – agriculture.
If we could go back to the good old days I would be all for it. But this model worked while the town was growing very slowly – and that is not the basic reality we are facing. And this is where for the sake of the town the Repubicans need to adjust and help develop the capacity of our local governmental institutions that have the tools available to manage the town’s growth. Like creation of the public education system, for example. Read the rest of this entry »