Magazine October 5, 2009, Issue

The Swamps of Jersey

New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine delivers his opening remarks at a luncheon hosted by Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government in New York, February 19, 2009. (Chip East/Reuters)
How the Garden State fell into decline

Paramus, N.J. —

Addressing a crowded room at the local Elks Lodge, not far from one of North Jersey’s ubiquitous shopping malls, Republican gubernatorial candidate Chris Christie paints a bleak portrait of his home state. New Jersey is “careening towards bankruptcy,” says the former U.S. attorney. “People and jobs” are fleeing “in droves,” mainly because of stifling levels of taxation. The Garden State is “no longer competitive,” and “businesses are voting with their feet.”

Is Christie overstating things? After all, blessed with felicitous geography and a highly educated work force, New Jersey remains the most densely populated state in the Union,

In This Issue



Education Section

Books, Arts & Manners




A reader argues that drug dealers are criminals — and if drugs were legalized, they would still be criminals.


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