In 2006, my older brother Phil C. Nolan ran for the position of Islip Town Supervisor, which is akin to being Mayor. It would be his third try.
Beginning with my father, Phil J. Nolan, the Nolan family had waged many political campaigns in Islip N.Y., and as Democrats in a heavily Republican area, we were defeated more often than not.
As we geared up for the race, I feared that it might be the last time my father would campaign with us and decided to document my brother’s somewhat quixotic pursuit. It resulted in my movie: Go Another.
Unfortunately, the feeling I had turned out to be prescient, and Philip J. died shortly after his son was sworn in. As the race recedes further into the past, I see this movie as a pretty good object lesson in the benefits of never giving up. At the same time, the movie is a tribute to my father—and mother—who built a family that stuck together and won a few—quite a few—along the way.
Over ten years ago, New Jersey’s Governor Chris Christie cancelled what at the time would have been the biggest public works project in America. It was called “Access to the Region’s Core,” or ARC. For the first time in over a hundred years two new commuter rail tunnels would be dug under the Hudson River.
When the newly elected Governor Chris Christie cancelled it, he claimed that it was because the state of New Jersey couldn’t afford it—even though New Jersey was only paying for about 15% of the total, and the preceding governor had put in place funding for the state’s share. Almost immediately, public transportation advocates and political opponents challenged his explanation.
As a follower of the project and the fifteen years it took to get it started, I came to believe a major opportunity had been missed—and not for the right reasons. This documentary is my take on what happened to the project and the long term negative impact it’s cancellation had on the region and the environment. It’s effect on Christie’s Political career is examined, as well as his new role as a talk-show pundit who still has designs on the White House.
With a new pro-public transportation and infrastructure Administration in Washington, it now looks like some version of ARC will be built. That is a good thing.
For any prior readers of this blog, you might have noticed that I’ve dropped the tagline: “Everything Reminds Me Of Something Else” from the header. Everything still reminds me of something else, but I decided to make these posts about just one thing at a time. Who knows, maybe I’ll be moved to create more of them.