Wednesday, April 26, 2006

The 'something new' I've learned today

Two states -- New Jersey and Oregon -- still have laws forbidding self-service gas stations. I was oblivious to this fact, despite having been to New Jersey before. Then again, I never had to fill up there, which probably explains things.


Blogger Susan of LocalTint said...

If you watch the Sopranos Season 3 DVD, Steve Buscemi tells about the NJ law during his commentary on the excellent episode "Pine Barrens."

Just a Sopranos plug.

6:46 PM  
Blogger Alabamian said...

I was a late comer to The Sopranos, but I've gotten hooked this season, just in time for the show to disappear on me.

7:15 PM  
Blogger Holden said...

That NJ law is an old attempt to "create jobs"--gas station attendant jobs, mind you, but jobs nonetheless. It's a weird anachronism from the 40s that has stuck around. But you should have heard the wailing and complaining this past week when the new governor, former US Senator Jon Corzine, proposed allowing self-serve as a cost-saving measure. You'd swear by the level of pissing and moaning that they were talking about making everyone build their own cars, not just put gas in 'em.

Good blog, BTW. Just stumbled across it....

5:20 AM  
Blogger Alabamian said...

Welcome aboard, Holden. I think all states have some anachronistic or downright weird laws on the books, and Alabama is no exception. Our state constitution has more than 770 amendments, some of which do things like allow people in a particular small town to play bingo. (It's a very long story.)

I'm interested to see what happens with that gas station law, so please let us know here if you hear anything new on it. Also, how is Corzine doing so far based on what you're seeing and hearing up there?

6:35 AM  
Blogger Holden said...

Hmmm, I'll let you guess. How do you think most people react when, within the first month of taking office, the new governor announces a sales-tax increase from 6 to 7%, tells us other taxes are going to have to go up, says service, especially education bucks, will have to be cut, etc.?

He's getting slaughtered in the polls.

Not to say that he's wrong about any of that, though...the state's been in a fiscal mess for a while now and it's gonna take tough measures to deal with it, but I have to wonder why he wanted to leave that cushy US Senate job, where his poll numbers were sky-high, to step into this thankless job.

6:38 AM  
Blogger Alabamian said...

I heard that Corzine spent lots of his own money on the race, too. He must have wanted the job pretty badly for some reason or another.

The tax-increase measures always hurt poll numbers, but if politicians are going to seek them at all, it makes strategic sense to do it early in their terms. Here in Alabama, Gov. Bob Riley was hammered in the polls after he pushed unsuccessfully for a $1.2 billion tax increase to try to bring education funding closer to the regional and national average. But three years later, old wounds have healed, and he's a strong favorite for re-election.

5:50 PM  

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