Plankton - the infrastructure of the ocean, and the Black community
A new way of looking at an old problem

In layman's terms plankton is just some small organisms that are found in the sea. It is even safe to say plankton is not something that is weighing on the minds of the people of the world and causing them to lose sleep. However, in reality, plankton is a crucial food source to both small and large forms of aquatic life.

If you could, just for a moment, imagine all the oceans and seas of the world separated by a large glass enclosure/divider. The demarcation line between each ocean would be the glass enclosure; which would prevent marine life from swimming from one ocean into another. In such a scenario nothing would change as far as aquatic life is concerned. Each ocean would be able to sustain aquatic life as we know it. Now take one of the oceans - let's use the Atlantic for this little experiment. Now remove all the plankton from the Atlantic(miraculously). At first the impact of such a move would hardly be noticeable. After all, plankton is so small and insignificant until it shouldn't matter. However, within a few short years the impact of such a move will have an enormous side-effect. The Atlantic will be labeled as a dying ocean. Marine life on one side of our glass enclosure would be thriving, while life on the Atlantic side would be struggling to survive.

Even if we were to restock the Atlantic with marine life the ocean would not be able to sustain it because of the absence of that often thought of as insignificant little organism called plankton. There is no other aquatic life form that can have such a devastating effect on an ocean's sustainability if it were removed. To complete our little experiment with our beloved Atlantic ocean, we will drill penny size holes throughout our glass enclosure. As a result, within a few short years, the Atlantic will be alive and thriving again! The holes we drilled allowed plankton to penetrate our glass enclosure from neighboring oceans, which in turn, stabilized the the Atlantic's food chain.

There is an ongoing debate about why the westside of Alachua County seem to thrive, while the eastside remains stunted. Answers given have ranged from too many projects, to too environmentally sensitive to support growth. There has been an exhaustive amount of expensive studies done on this mystery that have offered up findings that have yet to reveal anything remotely close to the truth. Trying to list all the promises, pledges and commitments that have been offered up by government based on those findings down through the years is the stuff carpal tunnel syndrome thrives on. Every new crop of leaders who devote themselves to addressing the problem not only gravitate toward the same old failed findings, they also try to repackage and push the same old failed solutions.

Referring back to our dying Atlantic Ocean experiment, you can bet any scientist or environmental group whose policy is to start with a conclusion first, then work the evidence in, refused to recognize the lack of plankton as the cause of the problem. Their hubris just would not allow them to admit the obvious because it didn't align with their ideaology. They offered up their own wild reasons like - loss of coral reefs, too many cruise ships, too much plastic, melting ice, and climate change as being the cause for the dying Atlantic. Their solutions for fixing the problem would be even wilder, and would range from implementing fees and surtaxes on fishing and surfing, to calling for a national tax to cover ocean revitalization. Unfortunately, more often than not, those are the types of mendacious solutions government tend to listen to, and they become the de facto narrative when discussing the problem.

The eastside compared to the westside paradigm is not very difficult to understand. The westside thrives because of an overabundance of plankton and the eastside suffers from plankton deficiency. government infrastructure spending serves as the plankton in the food chain of a thriving community. Infrastructure spending on the eastside seems like a waste of money to those who are enjoying the fruits of westside infrastructure spending and therefore it is not a priority for local government.

When government invest in large capital projects that brings new and improved infrastructure to your neighborhood you benefit immensely. Those high property taxes you paid actually returned some benefit to you. This is a common theme on the westside, government pumps in a bountiful supply of plankton and the big fish thrive and become even bigger. Contrast that to the eastside where property taxes are paid but the plankton never gets pumped in.

The best way to fully comprehend this article is to go on a little tour of a plankton deficient neighborhood. A very good place to start (if you are interested) is SE 20th or 21st Ave starting in the 2700 block (off Kincaid Rd) and head east (toward Faith Church). Don't be appalled on your way there as you turn off Hawthorne Road onto SE 27th Street and see how decrepit of a street the mighty Alachua County Sheriff Office and the magnificent Alachua County Fire and Rescue Administration office reside on (Truly embarrassing). Now back to the aforementioned two streets. I use these two streets because they are classic textbook cases of plankton deficiency, but the problem is pervasive throughout all of the eastside. As you drive up either street the first thing that jumps out at you is the condition of the homes; they're not bad looking homes and several are relatively new. However, the purpose of your tour should not be to observe the homes but the infrastructure (plankton) surrounding those homes. After driving through several blocks of homes you will be hard pressed to point to anything that looks like any recent government spending. No sidewalks to speak of, decrepit asphalt paved streets, no bike lanes, no American Disability Act (ADA) community infrastructure, no storm water infrastructure (but they are forced to pay a storm water tax) and nothing that indicates government knows or cares that this unicorporated area of the county exist.

The real tragedy here is that eastside homeowners get to pay the same rate of taxation as their westside counterparts. The conclusion you will draw from your little tour will be, what good are these homes since they don't benefit from government supplied plankton? Owning a home is suppose to provide an economically viable asset to the owner. In plankton deficient areas the only benefit of a home is to provide a roof over the owner's head. We know homes can be a source of wealth and individual net worth. For instance, homes on the westside accummilate equity at a higher rate and can be an asset to the owner when it comes to building wealth and achieving financial freedom. Again, to put this in perspective, Please take the tour if you can, it will be an eye opener.

Big healthy fish become big healthy fish because of what plankton in the ocean does for them. Big healthy home equity values become big healthy home equity values because of what government infrastructure spending does to a community.
Home ownership should be the gateway to financial independence, given the value of real estate. When you see identical homes within a few miles of each other being appraised at wildly different values, you should wonder why the social justice advocates always fail to notice this important fact. Social justice advocates by design, whether ill-intentioned or not, have gaslighted eastside residents to the point where parsimonious infrastructure spending by government in their communities doesn't get questioned. Social justice groups have done the most gainsaying when anyone even hints at trying a new approach for the eastside. The infrastructure spending ratio should be the first topic of discussion in any eastside-westside disparity fact finding endeavor.

Most, if not all, of our community social ills stem from issues related to finanicial disparities. Westside homeowners, because of their proximity to the plankton spigot tend to grow bigger net worths than their eastside counterparts who are woefully deficient in plankton.
There have been talk about stocking the eastside with event centers, restaurants, grocery stores and anything else that would be an indicator of a healthy community, but without the plankton, those things will not survive very long.

Again, referring back to our Atlantic Ocean experiment, when we drilled holes in our glass divider, plankton was able to come in and soon the Atlantic began to thrive organically - on its own. Soon big fish could be found there that were not put there as the result of some man made process. The same will happen to the eastside if the sanctions that prevent government infrastructure spending are removed. When government invest in an area you can be sure the private sector will follow. New development will sprang up and an influx of new market driven priced homes will attract the next generation of first time home buyers. Then comes the stores, shops and eateries along with everything found in a healthy community. Free market enterprise when allowed to work naturally is a powerful force, even on the eastside.

The only thing standing in the way are the sanctions. Local government hasn't officially declared it has put sanctions on the eastside but the zero sum game policies embedded in their comprehensive plans makes it official. The eastside will never thrive in a plankton deficient state. Remove the sanctions and watch what happens.

Lincoln Estates and Duval Heights, two large eastside housing developments were born out of free market enterprise before social engineering was adopted by local government. Social engineering lead to the current sanctions that deny eastside infrastructre spending. Most of the government supplied infrastructure found on the eastside demarcates where white communities once enjoyed eastside plankton. Whites saw where the plankton spigot was being moved to and they followed. The infrastructure they left behind became decrepit over time and that takes us to today. There is something akin to a renaissance taking place where whites are migration back to the eastside. This is happening because of free market economics. So far, Local government(especially county government) has taken a laissez faire approach to this renaissance because their hands are tied by the eastside infrastructure sanctions put in place decades ago. County government has painted themselves into a corner with their allegiance to the "Urban Cluster" idea, and cannot pivot in any meaningful way to keep up with the changing times. So, white fish don't get to grow very big on the eastside either, part and parcel due to plankton deficiency.

The following question should be posed to any expert that claims to have the answer for what needs to happen to improve community life on the eastside.
What would happen if local government removed all duplicitous policies and duplicitous individuals standing in the way of equitable infrastructure spending?
If the goal is to achieve perfect government infrastructure spending equity for all, you would have to do a dollar-for-dollar split. Meaning, for every dollar spent on infrastructure on the westside, you must match that amount in infrastructure spending on the eastside.
On the other hand, if the goal is to revive the eastside and bring back community services organically, a 2-to-1 split will be sufficient to accomplish that. Just spending half the amount of what is being spent on westside infrastructure would do wonders for the eastside. Invest in infrastructure spending and they will come.

A study commissioned by the Friendship 7 in 2018 found that blacks, who account for about 20 percent
of Gainesville's population, had a significantly higher chance of living in poverty, often times in east Gainesville
where there's insufficient access to quality transportation, schools, health resources and food options.

A study commissioned by the Friendship 7 in 2018 found that blacks, who account for about 20 percent of Gainesville's population, had a significantly higher chance of living in poverty, often times in east Gainesville where there's insufficient access to quality transportation, schools, health resources and food options.

Groups like "friendship 7" and Gnv4All are physcians who go around telling patients how bad their condition is but never venture beyond the speculative diagnosis in the search for a cure. Test scores,schools and health resources is meaningless data wnen taken out of context. The data they provide only reiterate the effects sanctions can have on a community. True socioeconomic data must take exact conditions into consideration. By not including the role of the sanctions in the study guarantees that the results will be inexact. Therefore, since those groups are putting forth solutions based on inexact findings they should not be taken seriously.

If local government has a disparity report fetish that it must satisfy, then their current infrastructure spending plan will continue to supply their fix.
Next time you hear a group or organization present the results of their findings on why the eastside lags behind the westside in some area, check their material to see if there is any mention of the current 97% to 3% imbalance in infrastructure spending. Remember, an Ocean with only 3% of its normal amount of plankton will barely be able to maintain marine life as we know it. If you are truly interested in knowing the root cause of why the eastside is stunted, start with infrastructure spending and how it effects home values.