This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Why Is New Jersey the Nation's Problem?

PORTLAND, Ore. (TheStreet) -- It's been seven years since I've called New Jersey home and six years since I paid it any tax money. It's been nearly two years since I lived within 2,800 miles of that state.

So why does it still dominate headlines, feature prominently on the sports page and dot the television listings?

What have I done so wrong that I have to be subjected to a live feed of Gov. Chris Christie's State of the State address about lane closures on the George Washington Bridge -- which I haven't had to cross in roughly half a decade -- on an Oregon network affiliate? What did I ever say to a columnist from the Oregonian to make him turn Christie, the Super Bowl and a stadium 10 minutes from my parents' house into a clumsy metaphor for this state's own governor?

Why has the transformation of Carlo's City Hall bakery in Hoboken from tiny neighborhood shop to camera-crowded den of TLC's Cake Boss extended into a sixth season?

Must Read: Vinyl Is Streaming Music's Flipside

I should know better than to ask these idiot questions about my former home state. New Jersey is a loudmouthed mess that gets really irate when it's ignored for too long. Allegations that Christie had his aides prod connections at the New York/New Jersey Port Authority into closing lanes on the George Washington Bridge and backing up traffic as a rebuke to the mayor of Fort Lee -- also known as that cluster of high rises surrounding the bridge's New Jersey side -- are damning, but mostly to Christie's New Jersey constituents and the New York commuters (as NBC's Late Night host Jimmy Fallon and Jersey's own Bruce Springsteen illustrated in song).

As former Lawrenceville, N.J., kid and Daily Show host Jon Stewart noted about a week ago, this scandal that Christie's denied direct involvement in would be lucky to crack New Jersey's Top 10 political scandals of all time. Keep in mind, the state is only five years removed from Operation Bid Rig that not only resulted in more than a half dozen of the state's sitting mayors being arrested for corruption, but in a group of Orthodox rabbis being arrested, charged and sentenced for organ trafficking.

Even that's pretty low-stakes poker for the portions of New Jersey that produced many of those arrested -- Hudson and Bergen counties, surrounding the site of the upcoming Super Bowl. Former Jersey City Mayor Frank Hague, whose political machine held the area in his grip for roughly 40 years, used to have a desk in his office with a two-way drawer just for accepting bribes. The Roosevelt administration gave him funding for a medical center in return for Hague's help getting him elected. Long before Judge Dredd uttered "I am the law" in comic books, Hague did so to his opponents. Seem familiar?

1 of 3

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
VIA.B $0.00 0.00%
CMCSA $60.49 0.00%
DISCB $27.07 0.00%
DISCA $28.90 0.00%
AAPL $112.12 0.00%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,084.49 +33.74 0.20%
S&P 500 2,014.89 +15.91 0.80%
NASDAQ 4,830.47 +19.6820 0.41%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs