The Morning Briefing April 23, 2012
NEWARK – History will be made tonight in Newark, when the Nets play their last game in New Jersey. In the 35 years the Nets have hung around, their relationship with fans has been akin to a drifter, loser girlfriend who just won't take no for an answer. She keeps coming around, sure, but she never delivers on her promises. She'll always expect you to spend about $100 a night and she'll usually leave you disappointed. Sometimes you see a glimmer of potential, but then she's off all over the country, embarrassing you in every town she stops in. She'll always expect a tearful reunion when she comes back to New Jersey, but it's never any fun. Now, finally, she's leaving you for some Russian guy in Brooklyn with a shiny new pad. Good, and good riddance.
ON THE ROADS – State Police are in crisis communications mode this morning, after The Star-Ledger reported that Troopers escorted a high-speed caravan of 25 to 30 Porsches, Lamborghinis, Ferraris and other speedsters in a 100 mph race down the Parkway to Atlantic City on March 30. To make matters worse, all the cars had their license plates covered with tape. Apparently one of the drivers was former Giants running back Brandon Jacobs. That rumor is being questioned, however, because no one has ever seen Jacobs move more than 1 yard at a time.
TRENTON – This Saturday is "Rutgers Day," a great opportunity for the university to open up its buildings to the public and showcase all of Rutgers' big plans for the future. But probably equally as important - but nowhere nearly as fun – is an Assembly Budget Committee on Wednesday that examines the Governor's higher education budget for the next year. State lawmakers have been short-changing our public universities for years, apparent in all the crumbling buildings, larger class sizes and higher tuition. A key question at Wednesday's hearing should be: What is our long-term plan to make New Jersey's universities stronger, yet realistically affordable?
GALLOWAY TOWNSHIP – Why should colleges like FDU get to hog up the media with results from their banal polling of New Jerseyans? Richard Stockton University wants some ink, too, announcing the creation of the "Stockton Polling Institute." Good time to get in the polling business, with the Presidential election upon us. This "institute" will also be accepting other clients at the beginning of next year – once it establishes its brand – so expect plenty more poll results in the morning news. Nice initiative, although six out of 10 New Jerseyans think the market for meaningful college polls has reached saturation.
STATEWIDE – That wet stuff you see falling out of the sky is something that people in New Jersey have referred to as "rain." After the recent draught – causing brush fires and blanketing the state in a thick coat of pollen – New Jersey has gotten soaked with two inches of rain. Finally. People with allergies are now cautiously peaking through the windows and may try to step outside today.
CAMDEN – Apparently, you are no longer allowed to dump in Camden. Mayor Dana Redd – who probably has one of the toughest jobs in America – is holding a press conference today to announce the city is beefing up efforts against criminals who illegally dump. Good; but you need to weigh if your limited police resources should be fighting street crime or trying to find who may leave a bathtub at the intersection of Adams Avenue and 28th Street.
THIS DAY IN HISTORY
It was this day in 1985 that some apparently drugged out executives at Coca-Cola decided to roll the dice on their billion-dollar empire, changing the flavor of their signature drink. "New" Coke was a short-lived disaster, but sure helped drive sales for a "newer" product named "Classic" Coke.