My Detroit friends out there in cyburbia, listen up! (now I know you all will know who I am, but these days, anonymity is the LEAST of my concerns...)
First, I really love the fact that we have a forum dedicated to venting: the true pastime of a properly focused planner. It's like dreaming with an attitude...
My general experience with community-based planning and neigborhood strategic planning has been biased in that I am in an intrinsically political environment (aren't we all, but Detroit is far from any norm, I believe). In light of this poor disclaimer, what is the attitude out there about community-oriented planning -- dare I say, advocacy planning? Is idealism a far gone conclusion in our urban society? Is "sustainable community development" a laughable concept, one for the study of planning ne'er do wells? I want to know, because it seems as though planning is developer, money, and politic driven, and not only that, but when a community is actually well informed and cooperative (GASP! Does that really happen?) the planning entity or process that is suppose to assist them is nowhere near the help it should or could be because it has been emasculated by the city council (or quasi-public other).
Thoughts and rotten tomatoes????
Secondly, where are the mentors out there? I'm drowning in a sea of incompetency and lack of general understanding about when to know when enough abuse is enough, or when to just chuck up and bear it. And what about those of us who are doing quite well with our undergrad planning degrees and yet need to consider when to pass Go and collect the AICP and the Master's or (gasp!!!) Doctorate?
Lastly, I've never been to the West Coast -- just how much fun is it? Can I tag along in someone's duffel???