Sewage, Sewage Everywhere

Yet another sewage spill in the area.

This morning the AJC reports that 12,600 gallons of raw sewage spilled on Hancock Drive near Emory University yesterday and spilled into Peachtree Creek.

Lots of people went before the DeKalb County Commission this past week and complained about higher water rates that are needed to cover a $700 million overhaul of the county’s sewer system.  I’m sorta feeling like I should have gone down there and done some unhinged yelling about these upgrades not being made sooner.  That would’ve really thrown those penny-pinchers for a loop!

14 thoughts on “Sewage, Sewage Everywhere”


  1. I read this limited information article on the AJC website too. When I think of Emory University, I think of Clifton & N. Decatur Rd.

    Hancock Drive is actually west of Briarcliff Rd, just north of The By Way. More specifically, behind the old mental health facility that is now (I believe) the Center for Life Long Learning.

  2. Unfortunately, this is the way that politics works. With good reason, most politicians won’t make painful decisions until they are forced to. If they pushed through a sewer system upgrade sooner, the voters would have had their heads for spending too much money. It would have been cheaper in the long-run, yes, but most voters aren’t informed enough to appreciate such details.

    For a national example, witness the simultaneous tax cuts and spending. No politician who wants to keep their job will do the responsible, painful thing (i.e. – meaningful tax increases and/or meaningful spending cuts to balance the budget) until they (we) are forced to.

    1. I generally agree with you, but consider whether, in the case of DeKalb Co., the voters just don’t trust the “public servants” in charge of county government, as opposed to being uninformed. In the respect, I point you to another headline in today’s AJC: http://www.ajc.com/news/dekalb/board-to-vote-on-779897.html

      If I did not read things like this shameful request for a $73,000 raise — unfortunately, a mere pebble in the Ocean of DeKalb school waste and mischief — I’d be a lot more likely to support more spending on real public works projects. Alas, for every penny we send to DeKalb that might fund a legitimate project, they’ll waste 3 through outright graft and incompetence.

      1. Holy shiz. I just read that the $73,000 raise was approved in a 7-1 vote of the board members, bringing up her salary to $238,000/yr. Disgusting.

        1. Someone noted on the AJC blog that she earns more than the Governor and the Veep. Must be hard work covering up all that corruption! Just kidddin of course…

    2. Fareed Zakaria’s been saying something similar as of late. Something to the extent that perhaps the Achilles heel of democracy is that we are incapable of inflicting short-term pain on ourselves for long-term gain.

      Whenever this conversation comes up, my mind floods with the historical examples in Jared Diamond’s follow up to “Guns, Germs and Steel”, “Collapse”, that shows all the old island civilizations that made themselves extinct through their own actions. I’m not an apocalyptic sort of fellow, but there seems to be some truth there.

  3. The only way a democracy or republic really work is when there is an educated and informed electorate.
    The stark reality is that may not be possible to educate everyone that can vote to an acceptable level.
    In fact politicians since time immemorial have counted on this fact.
    That the vast majority of people will not vote counter to there perceived interests as DM says doesn’t help one bit.
    As one wag put it, “Democracy is a form of government where 66 2/3 percent f the people can vote to kill off 33 1/3 percent of people any time they want”.

  4. Re: $75,000 raise and corruption

    Good point, yes. But, again this goes back to voter apathy. Will voters let those board members keep their job ? Probably.

    Re: 2 wolves + 1 sheep

    Good point, too. To add to that, the wolves *should* realize it’s in their best interest to not eat the sheep today, because they will be out of food tomorrow. Rather, by working *with* the sheep, they can develop a sustainable food source, like chickens. Perhaps that’s taking the analogy a bit too far 😉

    IMHO, the root of public servant corruption is voter apathy. A Democracy only works (well) if the population is educated and engaged.

    1. This whole discussion re: DeKalb school board is sort of irrelevant because a) it’s not COD schools and b) COD doesn’t vote for DeKalb members.

      It’s even more irrelevant to those folks who don’t vote in local elections (75% to 80% of those eligible) anyway. Every time these political discussions come up, I’d be interested in full disclosure on whether or not the commenter votes in local (as opposed to national or state) elections. Those who don’t, but complain about their elected officials, have near zero credibility as far as I’m concerned.

      1. Corruption in the DeKalb BOE also has no relevance to the performance of the DeKalb County Public Works Department and the aging water and sewer system.

  5. Now that I am informed, in the next election I will engaged and vote for the school board members who are against sewage.

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