Sunday, March 29, 2009

True News, Updated All Weekend

State of Shame
Welcome Aboard
Daily News
It is About Time

For the past several months this blogging site True News has been warning its readers that their dysfunctional government and politics was about to destroy the greatest city in the world. We are glad that the Daily News has joined our campaign with their new series "The dysfunctional government in Albany: You guys are a disgrace!". We feel the Daily News is off to a good start but there are a lot more reasons for the State of Shame then the corrupt up in Albany. In this era of spin where every act by a political official is excused by a public relations flack on his or her payroll, it is not necessary that the NY Post, Times and the rest of the so called old news media join in. It is also now time for journalists who are left at the failing old media to join in with the bloggers to develop new ways to expose corruption in government and politics. Everything that appears in today's Daily News Editorial Capitol Offenses: "New York's Legislature is the worst of the worst" has been said over and over again by True News. Talk abut the tail wagging the dog. In the mean time True News looks forward to the rest of the Daily News series. True News even offers them a few more suggestions. You can count on True News as you do a D train. It does not go fast, it is not fancy like a Rolls, but is reliable and goes on and on and on until it gets you there.

True News Reported It First: New York’s Political Mob Wars *** Organized Crime Politics *** Organized Crime Politics Part 1 *** NY' s Leaders Have Lost the Values and Morality that Once Made it the Greatest City in the World

Daily News Says: The dysfunctional government in Albany: You guys are a disgrace!
A lack of public input and accountability has locked citizens out of their government and made the Capitol ripe for corruption and favoritism.

True News Reported It First: NY's Non Investigations *** Inspector Clouseau Investigates *** Member Item Slush Fund Cover Up *** Lawyers and Developers Control Comptroller's Campaign

Daily News Says: There have been a string of high-profile scandals, indictments and convictions - including a governor caught frolicking with hookers, a controller forced out for using state employees to chauffeur his wife, and a Senate majority leader indicted for shady business dealings. The executive director of the state Public Integrity Commission, which is supposed to keep the executive branch honest, is under investigation. . . "The problem now is there is no cop on the beat," said Barbara Bartoletti of the state League of Women Voters. . . Controlled by lobbyists: The ethics panel that over-sees lawmakers has done virtually nothing over the years. The former Lobbying Commission - long considered the one effective oversight body - was folded into the Public Integrity Commission and its bulldog executive director fired.

True News Reported It First: NY' s Leaders Have Lost the Values and Morality that Once Made it the Greatest City in the World *** New York Needs A Sun Burn *** Will Dysfunctional Albany Destroy the MTA? *** New York’s Political Mob Wars *** 'GRAFT' JUST LIKE BAD OL' DAYS OF TAMMANY *** Lawyers and Developers Control Comptroller's Campaign

Daily News Says: Lobbyists have a stranglehold on the Legislature. Relying on buttonholing and campaign contributions to legislative leaders, the lobbying industry, which raked in $171 million in 2007, can block good-government legislation for years. . . That stranglehold helps speed through dead-of-night laws favoring special interests, like insurance companies or labor unions, with little notice, no debate and virtually no dissent.

True News Reported It First: Organized Crime Politics Part 1 *** Tweedies Honor Indicted Pol

Daily News Says: Legislative leaders buy loyalty by awarding committee chairmanships and leadership posts with thousands of dollars in stipends - although some committees rarely, or never, meet. Members almost always vote the way they're told. n Notoriously lax campaign laws let legislators use campaign cash on meals, travel, cars and gifts. Financial disclosure forms are a joke, allowing lawyer legislators - and others - to hide outside income and client lists.

True News Reported It First: Change Has Not Come to New York . . . Why? *** What if Albany Does Not Answer? *** Appointments Strengthen Special Interests, Corrupt Politicians

Daily News Says: Other states make it easier for rank-and-file members to move legislation forward. Unlike in most states, in New York, public hearings are seldom held on legislation, committees take their cues from legislative leaders and the two houses don't hold joint open committee meetings to hash out differences. . . Legislative leaders buy loyalty by awarding committee chairmanships and leadership posts with thousands of dollars in stipends and doling out millions in pork-barrel spending for local projects ranging from Little Leagues to health care clinics. The leaders also control the once-a-decade redistricting process in which the legislative lines are redrawn, often to protect incumbents and a party's majority.

True News Reported It First: New York Needs A Sun Burn

Daily News Says: Transparency is another major issue. Lawmakers are required to file financial and ethics disclosure forms, but they are heavily redacted when made public. That means, for instance, it's impossible to know how much Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan) makes in his role with a prominent trial law firm or who his clients are.

True News Reported It First: Reformers Have Their Annual Press Conference . . . Nothing Else

Daily News Says: Good-government groups have attacked Paterson for dropping Spitzer's reform mantle. They note there has been no push for campaign finance re-form. They and a handful of lawmakers want to create an independent redistricting commission to take politics out of the process.

True News Reported It First: NY' s Leaders Have Lost the Values and Morality that Once Made it the Greatest City in the World

Daily News Says: Sen. Seymour Lachman, a Brooklyn Democrat, said at a recent hearing on reform. "I witnessed members cede their independence and judgment to their leaders in return for favorable committee assignments, staff allocations, office space, funding for district projects, and financial and manpower support, if needed, at reelection time."

True News Reported It First: Can't Anyone Here Play This Game Anymore?

Daily News Says: Who pays for all this? We do: with sky-high taxes, expensive policy, bad laws and laughably ineffective public servants.

True News Reported It First: NY's Falling Voter Participation *** Tammany’s Ballot Control Again and Again *** The Real Campaign is to Suppress Challengers *** New Yorkers Have Lost Their Anger, Soul and Cockiness

Daily News Says: A lack of public input and accountability has locked citizens out of their government and made the Capitol ripe for corruption and favoritism. If the average person saw what's going on, they'd descend on Albany with torches and pitchforks like in the old Franken-stein movies," said former Assemblyman Thomas Kirwan, a Newburgh Republican.

True News Reported It First: Can't Anyone Here Play This Game Anymore?

Daily News Says: In the last two weeks alone, a massive corruption scandal in the controller's office was highlighted in an indictment, the governor and Legislature were finalizing a budget deal containing massive tax hikes in complete secrecy and a state senator was indicted on charges of beating his girlfriend.

True News Reported It First: Competitive Elections + Press/Public Outrage = Change and Action *** Forget Britney; Media Outrage Hits Big Spenders *** Deadline Brooklyn *** Shrinking Newspaper Coverage Means Less Real TV News More Sexy Reporters *** When Watchdogs Don't Bite *** Bloggers Get Their Press Passes

New York Times, Post, Newsday and TV News?

New state budget packed with pork for Albany legislators, despite economic crisis

From the Daily News:
Despite the state's growing fiscal problems, the new budget will be larded with tens of millions of dollars in legislative pork projects, the Daily News has learned. . . The number is expected to be somewhat lower this year to reflect the rough economic climate, lawmakers said. That doesn't matter to Senate Democrats, who until this year were in the minority. "Reductions or no, this is still so much more than we've ever gotten," one said.
One source said Smith had to deliver pork money to secure his leadership and ensure needed votes for the upcoming budget. . .

"It's business as usual here," said Elizabeth Lynam, of the Citizens Budget Commission. "We've had the complete meltdown of the core of New York's financial engine, yet the news doesn't seem to have traveled up the Hudson."

The City FDNY IN MOVE TO DOUSE OVERTIME ABUSE *** Fire Department Caps Overtime for Nonemergency Work *** FDNY Limits Overtime For Non-Fire Fighting Work *** A Heated Campaign for a Ceremonial Post *** A Debate at Ground Zero Over Which Name Will Last *** City Landmarks To Turn Dark For Green Cause *** City Hall woes thru the roof *** Health Dept. will lower minimum temp requirements *** Manhattan Investment Sales Dropped 69% in 2008 *** New York Library Looks To Business Intelligence Software For Help(Information Week) *** New Verizon Local Cable Channel Coming to City(Wall Street Journal via NYConvergence) *** Gotbaum: End Costly, Temporary Homeless Shelter Program(Public Advocate’s Corner) *** Newtown Creek May Become Bigger Hazard As Planet Warms (Greenpoint Star) *** Offshore Wind Initiative Moves Forward (Queens Chronicle) ***Residents to Fight Natural Gas Storage Island Plan (The Forum) *** Fading of the Wall Street Dream *** Macy’s parade may skip Times Square *** Vacancies in prime office buildings soar 66% *** TN Sunday To Fans, Queensboro Bridge Is a Steel Swan, Not an ‘Ugly Duckling’ *** Why Are These Renters Smiling? *** THE NOTORIOUS B.I.D.S: 'DO-NOTHING' BIZ BOARDS UNDER FIRE *** MADOFF'S 2 MET TIX TO BE SOLD *** YOU MACY A PARADE OFF-B'WAY *** BLOOMY'S SCHOOL LESSONS *** THE SHOWS MUST GO ON (THE ROAD) WITHOUT TAX BREAK $TRAPPED PRODUCERS ARE PLANNING NEW 'ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK' *** END '20 & OUT' New York City will soon spend more each year on former employees than it does on its current workforce *** Bridge to Somewhere: Queensboro Bridge Turning 100 *** Hundreds Wait Hours for Shot at Job with S.I. Yanks *** Albany, NY - Agudath Israel: NYS Budget To Include $30 Million In Nonpublic School Cap Funding *** Bloomberg to Freelancers: NYC LOVES YOU

Road to City Hall Bloomberg May Once Again Run On Independence Party Line *** Swipes on Term Limits at Comptroller Forum *** McManus to Endorse Snyder for DA *** With Bloomberg’s Attention, Quiet Hope Spurs in Manhattan GOP *** Next Step Unclear for José and the Riveras in Bronx Politics Alliance with Espada floated as possible way to regain influence *** Four More Years of Planning, Waiting and Swinging Hard: Deferring BP run to 2013, minority Oddo leader backs Katz and de Blasio for 2009 *** Bloomberg Opens Bronx, Queens Campaign Offices *** Sunday Lisberg: Bloomberg remains man to beat for mayor *** Bloomy moves in on Weiner turf *** CAROLINE & MIKE'S FUNNY FISH TALE *** Mayor Mike Lets Out His Colorful Self Under the Sea *** Mayor Mike Going All Out in Re-Election Bid *** Bloomberg Opens Campaign Offices in 3 More Boroughs

How to Train a Governor The political free fall of Gov. David Paterson of New York isn’t from any big personal scandal. He has alienated the public just by being terrible at his job, Collins, NYT

Albany RIDERS RAIL AGAINST LAWMAKERS WHO SASS TRA\NSIT: The nerve! Riders in the districts of some of the Democratic state senators who stalled the MTA bailout plan -- and then scoffed when asked whether they actually carried MetroCards -- blasted... *** 'FREE' DEEP DOWN INSIDE: PATRIOTIC NAME ON TOWER BEAM *** DRUG CONS AT END OF 'ROCKY' ROAD SENTENCES MAY BE CUT FOR 1,500 *** New State Drug Laws Replace Jail Time With Treatment *** Deal on State’s Drug Laws Means Resentencing Pleas *** VIDEO: Malcolm Smith On Rock Law Reform *** As State’s Budget Deadline Nears, Leaders Still Far Apart on Many Details *** Rallying Around a Politician Charged With Assault *** State Senator Pleads Not Guilty To Assault Charges *** Attack? Alleged beating vic has kiss for Hiram *** Hiram's gf, another member of the Rihanna Denial Club *** Harsh Economy Takes Toll on New York State Summer Arts Program *** A More Transparent Budget Process Is Needed *** Paterson responds to transparency questions with snark *** Tale of the tolls: The issue rises again! *** The AIG drumbeat: Cuomo gets 'Hardball' love *** State legislators to offer up MTA plan *** The MTA: Finally, Someone Mentions Pensions(NY Fiscal Watch) *** Details on Applying for “Green Infrastructure” Stimulus Funds(S.W.I.M.) *** An on-time budget, but at what cost? *** Unions: Have not heard from gov. on layoffs *** Lawmakers sweat over budget solutions *** Unions Take Cautious Approach to New Power Alignment in Albany *** TN Sunday Albany's rogues gallery See a who's who of elected state officials who got in hot water in the past five years *** Obama heading to England & meet with Queen *** Paterson, Albany leaders settle on personal income tax hike *** Albany Agrees on a Plan to Raise Taxes on Top Earners *** GOV CLINCHES DEAL ON HUGE TAX HIKES *** MONSERRATE'S NO VICTIM - NYP Ed *** Tax Hikes Focus Of State Budget Deal *** State Lawmakers Work On MTA Rescue Plan *** Wine bill dies *** AUDIO: New York Legislature Agrees to State Budget

President Obama BAM SENDS 4,000 MORE TROOPS TO AFGHANISTAN *** Obama widens war against al-Qaida in Afghanistan *** US takes new climate change agenda to global talks *** AdWatch: A campaign-style blitz for Obama budget *** Was Biden Architect of Afghan Strategy? *** Wall St. CEOs emerge from meeting bullish on Obama's plan *** Obama: Taliban and Al Qaeda must be stopped *** Obama plans tough line with carmakers *** Obama’s Urban Opportunity(Mother Jones) *** The Gaggle: Obama: Keep Your Enemies Closer? *** Obama Afghanistan Plan Breaks Old Ground *** VIDEO: Obama promotes relief efforts *** Obama nominates ex-Gov. Mabus for Navy post *** Fuel efficiency standards hiked for 2011 *** Holbrooke Calls for "Complete Rethink" of Drugs in Afghanistan *** America’s Oligarchs and the Financial Crisis - Simon Johnson, The Atlantic *** Where's the Exit Strategy? - Dan Froomkin, Washington Post *** Obama's Persistence is Slowing Paying Off - Eleanor Clift, Newsweek *** Obama Sets New Standard Managing Media - Margaret Talev, McClatchy *** Mr. Obama's Surge - Wall Street Journal *** Ticker: Ex-Cabinet pick slams Obama's budget *** Obama's Enforcer - Floyd & Mary Beth Brown, TMV *** Obama to Fargo in weekly address: No Katrina on my watch *** Obama calls major economies climate change meeting *** Obama calls major economies climate change meeting *** Obama to discuss North Korea with China's Hu at G20 ***Biden cautions against over-regulating markets *** Sunday Report: Video allegedly shows Biden daughter snorting coke *** Speaking Freely, Biden Finds Influential Role *** Obama Will Face a Defiant World on Foreign Visit *** GOV'S MED-PLAN 'BANKRUPT' FEAR *** Gates Backs Sanctions For North Korea, Iran *** G-20 to Target Tax-Haven Nations ***
Traveling Obama Faces World Anger
*** Obama Assures Exit Strategy for Afghanistan *** DHS Policy Shift Ahead For Immigration Raids Agency says changes will come on federal raid rules; U.S. will better scrutinize cases, may move focus from immigrant workers to employers *** Gen. Petraeus: U.S. no less safe under Obama *** Lobbyists awaiting guidance from Treasury Department *** The President's Never-Ending Virtual Town Hall *** PJTV: Meet The Blogs. JournoList, state sovereignty resolutions, Obama as media mogul, and more *** Gates says US can do nothing about N. Korean missile *** Obama sets new standard for managing the news *** Team Obama Halts Talk of Assault Weapons Ban *** Obama Is Wrong The loyal opposition of Paul Krugman

Congress Senate takes on out-of-network insurance issue *** Iowa Sen.'s latest eye-brow raising remark involves colleague's wife *** Senate OKs 9/11 as 'Day of Service' *** Reid to liberals: Back off *** Reid: Roberts 'didn't tell us the truth' *** House gets files on U.S. attorneys *** VIDEO: This week in video *** Reid disses Schumer? GOP GOP says Obama budget threatens future prosperity *** Palin 2012 Watch: AG from NRA post-'Troopergate'*** House GOP split on budget *** Ire at Wall St. Bonuses Is Now Factor in House Race *** Senate Takes on Out-Of-Network Insurance Issue *** NY-20- Cook Political Report calls race 'toss up' *** Congress Buys Time for Health Savings *** More states see jobless rate top 10 percent *** Kentucky's Gov. Endorses Bunning's Challenger - Lexington Herald-Leader *** Sunday Run for Gillibrand's old seat a test for GOP, Obama *** McCain on Backing Palin in 2012: "I'd Have to See" *** McConnell criticizes Obama 'explosion of government' *** Former Rep. Case to run for Hawaii seat *** Fair Elections Now! The moment is ripe for major campaign-finance reform *** CHRIS DODD UPDATE: “Sen. Chris Dodd has hired a rising political talent as his 2010 campaign manager as he faces his toughest re-election in years

Wall Street Mess WALL ST. LOSES ITS 'LION' AT 95: Jack Dreyfus *** RUTH'S '$2 MIL BONUS' *** Bank execs vow to work with Obama on recovery plan *** Hard Times for Luxury, but They’ll Have a Go *** U.S. Expected to Give More Financing to Automakers *** Madoff’s London Office Accused of Role in Fraud *** Bid for Madoff Trading Unit Is $15 Million *** MGM Averts Bankruptcy at Project in Las Vegas *** Dylan Ratigan of CNBC’s ‘Fast Money’ Leaves Network *** Auto Industry Set to Get More Aid *** Electric cars for all? Tesla's new model for under $50K *** Geithner Faces Stress Test *** Has the Stock Market's Rally Run Its Course? *** GM's Saturn, Apparently Doomed, Still Pitching Hard *** Battered RBS Bank Takes Its Cash Back to Britain *** Diamond trade loses its luster in recession *** Bank of America CEO: No Apology *** Markets Again Bet the Worst is Past - Tom Petruno, Los Angeles Times *** Davos Capitalism: Adam Smith's Nightmare - Mike Miller, Acton Institute *** We Need a Better Cushion Against Risk - Alan Greenspan, Financial Times *** Fighting Over Child Support After the Pink Slip Arrives *** Sunday Madoff's Mets tix could be Amazin' deal *** MADOFF'S 2 MET TIX TO BE SOLD *** Geithner: $135B Left of TARP Money *** Donald Trump To Madoff's Family: You're Guilty! *** IT’S NOT JUST TEA PARTIES: Protesting state and local taxes, too *** GM CEO will step down

National UNDER FLOCK & KEY: FAA HIDES GEESE DATA *** REV. AL'S HALF-PRICE DEAL ON $1.8M TAX *** Detroit Faces Its Critics With Anger and Tears *** FEMA Dispatched to North Dakota *** Smuggler Training Camp Uncovered *** States' Unemployment Rates Rise *** Shadows linger in era of transparency *** Texas Allows Evolution Doubts in Class *** Drug violence threatens U.S. truckers *** Recession squeezes day care from both sides *** Teacher Unions vs. Poor Kids - Nat Hentoff, RealClearPolitics *** The Revival of American Populism - The Economist *** Electoral College Foes Set Sights on Colorado - Wall Street Journal *** Washington - Tobacco Tax Increase Expected to Reduce Smoking *** Floridians asked to spend dollars in state

International Zardari Backs 'Positive Change' *** Why North Korea Nabbed Two U.S. Journalists ***China's Grieving Parents Mobilize *** G20 march begins week of protests in London *** Freedom and the Internet Don’t Always Mix The internet spreads information around the world, but freedom is more difficult.... *** Can Uncle Sam Let Go of NATO? - Pat Buchanan, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review *** China's Military Going Global - John Metzler, China Post *** Copenhagen: Environmental Munich - Investor's Business Daily *** Report: Russia to build 6 armed nuclear subs *** Vast Spy System Loots Computers in 103 Countries *** Economic Woes Stoke Thai Discontent *** Turks Vote in Local Elections ***
Peace in the Middle East?

It's Not The New York Times by Michael Wolff Among the biggest media stories going, it surely seems to me, is the end of the New York Times. The verities not just of journalism but of the establishment itself—nurtured, and in part created, by the New York Times—necessarily change. This seemed so large to me that, not too long ago, I proposed the Times’ decline and fall as a natural book topic. The response among various publishers was practically unanimous: Not enough people would be interested.

Media Mess LIONSGATE CUTS MORE JOBS *** Sunday talk show tip sheet *** Big Three anchors heading to London *** TIMES SEEKING $4.5 MILLION SAVINGS FROM GUILD WORKERS *** 56 New York City Nonprofits to Follow on Twitter(Idealist in NYC) *** Newspapers last bastion against political corruption, says creator of The Wire *** CNN slips to third place in prime time... *** Is Facebook Growing Up Too Fast? *** HuffPost Launches Investigative Journalism Venture *** Eric Alterman Jon Stewart: Our Murrow? *** JEFF GREENFIELD ON NEWSPAPERS: “Are we really facing the demise of the great metropolitan daily?”*** Newspapers Need a New Business Model -- Now (Marketwatch) *** Changes at the Christian Science Monitor