Monday, April 20, 2009

Organized Crime Politics: Comptroller Office for Sale $$$

Organized Crime Politics
Office for Sale $$$

As the latest Pay-to-Play, organized crime take over of the New York State Comptroller's office becomes exposed, those in office or running for the position of comptoller remain silent. Manhattan Borough President Stringer's statement today on the NYC Comptroller's office is proof positive that the office of the Comptroller works the same way.

"It's hard to justify -- particularly in this economic climate -- the millions of dollars in fees that end up in the hands of middlemen who act as placement agents for public investments," said Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, one of 11 trustees of the New York Employees Retirement System.

Why are both the candidates and the present people who occupy the position, silent? True News told you weeks ago to follow the money: Lawyers and Developers Control Comptroller's Campaign. Half the funds raised by the current crop of candidates are from Wall Street connected lawyers and developers. Why is the media not focused on the office holders and current candidates for comptroller, getting away with corruption? Are they somehow connected?

POLS BLAST FEE RIDE BY PENSION PLACERS Top city officials are considering whether to ban private equity firms that serve the mammoth municipal pension funds from using middlemen, in the wake of a scandal that has rocked the state *** PRIVATE EQUITY INVESTMENTS A TIME BOMB Unlike traditional investments in publicly traded companies, private equity firms -- which borrow money to purchase businesses in the hopes of reselling them for a profit -- have nearly no reporting requirements. Buyers purchase an interest for a fixed period of time, after which they're told the value of their investment and are given the option to cash in *** Pension-Deals Scrutiny Spreads *** The Public Pension Shakedown Why would a smart guy Steven Rattner, invest in a movie named 'Chooch'? *** *** The Trailer for Chooch Arriveth *** A money manager tied to President Bill Clinton received millions of dollars in pension-related fees while Alan Hevesi was comptroller, but it isn’t known whether he is under investigation *** George Marlin writes about a largely unnoticed provision in this year’s budget that will allow the state to bond debt for everyday operating expenses *** Bill Clinton's pal earned huge pension fees: Marvin Rosen's firm got millions during Hevesi reign *** The Wall Street Journal thinks pension funds present a "huge political temptation" - even if its run by a board and not a sole trustee. The solution? "(T)ake these assets and the pension investment decisions away from political actors."

Pay to Vote DEMS GO WHOLE HOG IN BID FOR MTA HELP Senate Democrats this afternoon are expected to announce a plan that would dangle millions of dollars in pork-barrel funds, money for new staffers, and tax revenues to buy votes *** TEACHER TENURE BULLIES UFT'S BIG POWER PLAY It was child's play for the almighty United Federation of Teachers: Destroy attempts to reform lax tenure rules -- and then brazenly write the very law that preserved the status quo *** Paterson and Sen. Carl Kruger use fighting words over the MTA.

Pay to Play Ex-Leader’s Indictment Further Weakens Liberal Party The indictment of Raymond B. Harding, the former Liberal Party leader, dealt another blow to a party that has had little power since 2002 *** Deal 'em in: King, Israel and D'Amato at the D.C. table

On the Road to City Hall Caribbean Leaders Throw Support Behind Bloomberg *** Mayor Keeps Low Profile on M.T.A. *** Elizabeth Benjamin writes that gay rights advocates are playing hard to get when it comes to endorsing in the New York City mayoral race *** Hizzoner gets the nod from Brooklyn church *** Markowitz's plan to build $64 million Coney Island amphitheater comes under fire *** Big biz and unions are major players in City Council races *** Official Whose Seat Andrew Hevesi Took Says He Just Wanted to Be 'Closer to Home' *** Thompson and Avella Try to Remind Gay Democrats There's a Race On *** Bloomberg’s LCA rebuttal *** Helen Sears on Keeping Things the Same *** GOP Endorsement For Bloomberg's Re-Election Still Not A Done Deal Queens Gazette *** How do you beat Bloomberg? In the only New York City borough to vote against Barack Obama, City Comptroller and mayoral candidate William Thompson told a crowd in St. George yesterday that Mayor Michael Bloomberg has the same weakness as Obama's November opponent *** Bloomberg on M.T.A.: I'll Be More Helpful Than I Look

Press Parets "Campaign Spin" FAILURE INSPIRES SUCCESS: BENEFITS OF MIKE PLAN ***POL'S PLAN FOR MCD-FREE ZONES A city councilman yesterday unveiled a healthy plan requiring fast-food joints to keep their distance from schools, saying Big Apple children "are literally being poisoned" by their...more > (post) *** A Proposal to Separate Fast Food and Schools (Times) *** Move fast-food pushers away from schools, Queens pol says (Daily News)

The City DOLAN COUNTS HIS BLESSINGS *** HOMELESS IN HAMPTONS NO-JOB LABORERS CAMP NEAR MANSIONS *** WRIGHT ON, GUGG! MARKING 50 YRS., FRANKLY *** Tales Of "The Shack" At One Police Plaza *** 5 Pointz Owner Fixing Building, But Future Remains Uncertain *** New York's Lost Skyline *** Hyatt aims to open two new Manhattan hotels *** Renaming a Street, and Reliving the Bell Case *** After Scandal, Queens Church Moves On *** NYPD slower response times *** Famed Simon Wiesenthal Center's Gala Dinner Abruptly Canceled *** Washington Heights tribute to fallen Marine tarnished *** Joyous prayers for Harlem sailor *** Schools playing with fire, inspector warns *** Vacant Storefronts: Don’t Believe the Hype *** Steve Cuzzo wants Bloomberg to re-engage in the Ground Zero redevelopment battle *** Washington Heights Community Protests Over Post Office Closing *** MTA struggles to keep Herald Square escalators moving *** How Likely Are You to Leave New York? *** Seeking to Rename a Street for Sean Bell *** Coney Island Amphitheater May Be Stymied by Synagogues *** Staten Islanders clamor for toll-equity bumper stickers *** Borough construction industry in slumpAlthough Queens real estate is miles away from the Wall Street epicenter of the financial crisis... *** Central Park Jogger Still Running 20 Years Later

Albany IN$URE POORHOUSE: HEALTH RATES NOW MORE THAN RENTS *** DANGEROUS DEBT: NY'S BOND GIMMICK *** RUDY RIPS GOV'S BID FOR GAY NUPS *** SPITZER DODGES ON SHRINK ***Spitzer opens up about family, 'temptations' *** Newsweek: Eliot Spitzer Had Come Out of Hiding *** Spitzer Madam Claims Craigslist Murder Victim Was A Staffer *** Paterson's Plot to Resurrect His Governorship *** The Political Art of Anger Management Andrew Cuomo’s ride to the governor’s mansion, on the backs of a furious mob *** Community Gardens Get Miracle Grow From Albany *** With prison populations declining and recent Rockefeller Drug Law changes, the Center for Law and Justice is changing its mission to helping people get out of jail *** A panel to review healthcare mandates has never met, two years after it was created *** Paterson speaks with CSEA leaders at a protest against his proposed layoffs; but the union leaders are impressed *** Editorial: Socking SUNY students
Forget the millionaires. The people who have been sucker-punched the hardest under New York's bloated, irresponsible budget are the families whose children are enrolled in the state university, DN Ed *** Siena Poll: Paterson, No. Gay Marriage, Yes. *** Dan Jansion thinks Paterson was "pushing his ironic gifts into the risky zone" during his LCA show response *** City officials have to sign off on Paterson's $270 skim from the Battery Park City Authority *** The L.C.A. show was this weekend. Liz has some video of David Paterson' rebuttal *** Poll: New Yorkers Reject Paterson, But Accept His Marriage Proposal *** The 109th annual LCA show: An intimate setting *** Paterson on the edge: Competing with SNL? *** Smith’s LCA rebuttal *** Paterson’s LCA rebuttal *** Voters would prefer Mario Cuomo, Pataki, even Spitzer over Paterson *** Colbert’s snark on gay marriage, calls for a return to Client 9 *** Smith: Not Going To Horse-Trade On Gay Marriage *** Even Rudy Realizes He Went Too Far by Smearing Marriage Equality *** Gay rights groups angry with Giuliani *** Spitzer Spins Newsweek, Newsweek Spins Spitzer Wolff *** Paterson Gets An Earful *** Spitzer: 'I Would Desperately Love to Be Back as Governor' *** MTA Bailout Apparently Hinges On Senate GOP *** Heads Shake Over Animated Paterson Wheelchair Skit Struggling In Polls, Governor 'Flips Out' During During Parody Of Political Ad; Many Left Jaw-Dropped, While Others See It As Comedy *** Paterson's Approval Rating Drops Another Two Points

President Obama O WON'T PROSECUTE BUSH 'TORTURE' TEAM *** HUGO GIFT ONE FOR THE BOOKS *** HE'S 'O' POSITIVE: UPBEAT ON CUBA AND VENEZUELA *** Obama says reaching out to enemies strengthens US *** Analysis: Obama gores foreign policy ox *** WHITE HOUSE NOTEBOOK: Obama gets chatty with press *** Obama aide takes dim view of anti-tax tea parties *** A Real Problem, Here President Obama should build on the Bush administration’s legacy of fighting AIDS abroad while also shrinking the size of this country’s epidemic, NYT Ed *** Obama to Order Cabinet To Identify Budget Cuts *** Chamber aims to work with Obama *** Rahm and Mitch walk into a bar *** Obama To Take Aim at Credit Card Abuses *** Gingrich compares Obama to Jimmy Carter *** Obama to order $100 million in cuts *** Obama: 'New era' in relations *** Obama Targets Credit-Card Fees *** U.S. Projects Openness at Summit *** Agency Fights Imperil Drug Probes *** The Obama administration has preserved some Bush-era policies on the withholding information from the public *** Will "Obama Coffee" Become the Next Target of Protests? *** Obama adviser David Axelrod said the tea party movement could evolve into something “unhealthy.” *** President Barack Obama wants GOP lawmakers to be more constructive when the return from legislative recess *** The White House says it is unlikely to need to take over a bank *** Ex-CIA chief: Obama risks national security... *** AP: Is Obama The New Gorbachev? *** Ana Marie Cox: Why We Should Abolish The White House Press Corps *** Sales Soar Of Book Chavez Gave Obama *** Jailed reporter in Iran is no spy, Obama says *** Anti-U.S. tirades no big deal, says Obama *** Obama's Clever Liberalism *** Obama Demands Savings *** A World Of Trouble For Obama - Jackson Diehl, Washington Post *** In Search of an Obama Doctrine - Clive Crook, Financial Times *** Obama, Holder Strike Right Balance on Memos - Lanny Davis, Wash Times *** Why Obama Needs to Reveal Even More on Torture - Robert Baer, Time *** Republican Pit Bull Attacks Don’t Hurt Obama - Al Hunt, Bloomberg *** Obama's Doctrine of R-E-S-P-E-C-T - USA Today *** Obama's Summit of the Americas Press Conference - Barack Obama *** Rahm Emanuel & John Boehner on "This Week" - This Week *** Guests: Larry Summers; Former Reps. Armey & Ford - Meet the Press *** Axelrod Doesn't Get Tea Party Concept - Robert McCain, The Other McCain *** Obama Interview: How to Get Business Going - Nina Easton, Fortune *** Obama Deeply Respects Markets - Franklin Foer & Noam Scheiber, TNR *** Picking 10 Letters a Day That Reach Obama *** Obama to CIA: I feel your pain *** Credit card execs summoned to White House *** Obama to host Dem fundraiser

Congress Congress set to tackle credit cards, health care *** BATTLE OF THE GOUGE
CARD ABUSE TARGETED *** FEDS TO TAX WEB TO BOLSTER STATE REVENUES *** Labor, greens team up *** Adversaries team up on health care *** Trouble on tobacco road *** NRCC nets more from much less *** Dodd's political recovery plan *** Thune tries to spread GOP message *** GOP stumbling in health care fight *** Health May Get Priority in Congress *** Sens. Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand urge the repeal of an amendment that requires background checks be destroyed 24 hours after a gun is purchased. Gillibrand defends her about-face on the issue *** Potential Senate challengers to Gillibrand amp up fundraising *** Gilly defends flip-flop on guns *** CQ: Rep. Harman Recorded On Wiretap Promising To Intervene For AIPAC, Say Sources *** Dem Bigwig in Wiretap Probe California Congresswoman Jane Harman *** Rep. Peter King is standing by his latest comments on Muslims that the New York chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations called "bigoted." *** Gillibrand, who is trying to raise her profile downstate, was mistaken for a FOX News reporter at a city senior center *** Conress Resumes at a Slower, More Normal Pace - The Hill *** NRA Official Rips Weapons-Ban Bid - Washington Times *** Visclosky looks for help on legal fees *** Franken taps state director *** Coleman files appeal

Pay to Play THE INFLUENCE GAME: Drawing to an online straight The Poker Players Alliance is betting $3 million that it can overturn an Internet gambling ban

Wall Street Mess BANE OF NAZIS IS $TRUGGLING: THE Nazis couldn't kill the dream that was started by Simon Wiesenthal after World War II. But the rotten economy, government cuts and Bernie Madoff seem to be doing the trick very nicely *** Recession pits small banks against big banks *** CAUGHT IN THE CURRENCY: INVESTORS WEIGHING ALTERNATIVE *** CONSUMER PRICES IN A COMPLETE AND HISTORIC FREEFALL *** Citi’s 1Q profit spike: Less than meets the eye *** One area seeing growth: Trust-and-estate lawye... *** U.S. May Convert Banks’ Bailouts to Equity Share *** Debt Settlers Offer Promises but Little Help *** Erin Go Broke The slogan “Erin go bragh,” used as a declaration of Irish identity, could also be read as a prediction for the world economy, Krugman, NYT *** Quarter Offers Some Good News for Bank of America *** PepsiCo Offers $6 Billion for Bottlers *** U.B.S. Sells Brazilian Unit as Banks Step Up Disposals *** Debt Settlers Offer Promises but Little Help *** Sellers Woo Shoppers With Guarantees to Address Layoff Worries *** 3 Trustees of A.I.G. Are Quiet, Perhaps to a Fault *** As Costs Fall, Companies Push to Raise Internet Price *** Exxon Mobil Tops Wal-Mart to Lead a Poorer Fortune 500 *** Tweeting Becomes a Summer Job Opportunity *** Bailout overseer draws fire from right *** For Some, Disparity In Jobless Benefits *** Oracle Agrees to Acquire Sun *** BofA Posts Profit Amid Weak Conditions *** Key Nonprofit Jobs Remain Open *** Fed's Test: When to Turn Off the Money Pump *** Stimulus Questions Frustrate Businesses *** Markets Await U.S. Banks' Results *** The New York Federal Reserve has named Brian Sack to lead its Market Group *** AIG’s fate may be in the hands of the company’s three little-known trustees *** Men bear brunt of jobs lost; Women set for labor force majority... *** BusinessUS May Convert Bailouts To Common Stock: Back Door To Nationalization? *** Psychic: Bernie vics may collect - after he's dead *** Bank of America Beats the Odds *** Down and Out on Wall Street *** A Majority Female Workforce? *** The Economics of Capping Carbon - Peter Huber, City Journal *** Auto Executives See Shift to China ***

National Court to weigh state's duty to English learners *** Ill From Food? Investigations Vary by State *** Marijuana Advocates Point to Signs of Change *** In New Jersey, Bills Offering In-State Tuition to Illegal Immigrants Face a Fight *** Chicago Confidential Rod Blagojevich’s not guilty plea was a reminder of when the art of buying a political position was considered all in a day’s work *** Civil Liberties Groups Criticize Border Screening *** How the Unions Killed Detroit *** Liberalism's Moment - Franklin Foer and Noam Scheiber, The New Republic *** Our Depression Obsession - Robert Samuelson, Newsweek *** Earth Day Ain't What It Used to Be - Elizabeth Kolbert, New Yorker *** Tom Brokaw argues for consolidation of local government in a Times op-ed *** Miss California Sparks Furor With Gay Marriage Comments on Miss USA Telecast... *** UPDATE: Shortages of ammo and gun accessories cropping up nationwide... *** 21 Horses Die at Polo Open *** Boston Marathon Off and Running *** Steele: Axelrod's 'arrogance of power'

Iranian prez sparks walkout by calling Israel 'most cruel and racist regime' Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad sparked an angry walkout by Western diplomats at a U.N. racism conference.

International Waterboarding Used 266 Times on 2 Suspects *** Boycotts as Racism Conference Opens *** Porsche Chooses China for Entry Into Sedans *** Imagining a Bolder Role for IMF *** Pirates Are Somalia's Godfathers *** Extremist Tide Rises in Pakistan *** What Was the Civil War About? Historians say Barack Obama's election brings a new angle to the longtime pedagogical question *** Why Is Ahmadinejad Helping Journalist Roxana Saberi? *** Can a Broken-Windows Policy Work in Lebanon? *** Berlin Wall: Was the Fall Engineered by the GDR? *** U.N. Hopeful N. Korea to Resume Talks *** U.S. Seeks Support for Antipiracy Efforts *** Iraq's Stock Exchange Goes Electronic *** PAPER: Israeli military ready to bomb Iran... *** Six Join US in UN Boycott *** Israel's New Govt Weighing Up Relations With America - The Economist *** Legalized Rape in Afghanistan - Boston Globe *** Labour's Smear Machine Has Backfired - William Rees-Mogg, The Times *** China’s Automakers Becoming Trendsetters *** Israel Battles Iran By Recruiting Gay Community

Media TIVO TRIES LOCAL SETTING IN BATTLE WITH NIELSEN *** ABRAMS READIES MEDIA SITE *** NBC Universal 1Q earnings down 45% *** Subway places more than just product in NBC's Chuck Script puts sandwich front and center and includes chain's '$5 Foot-Long' tagline *** SAG Members to Vote on Contract Much Like Initial Offer *** Adobe in Push to Spread Web Video to TV Sets *** The Older Audience Is Looking Better Than Ever *** An Atlanta Editorial Voice May Move to the Right *** News Show Throne Is Up for Grabs *** Logging On to the Ivy League *** Indie Films Suffer Drop-Off in Rights *** This Week in Magazines: A Remarkably Resilient Progressive Turns 100, Eliot Spitzer Gropes to Turn a Corner *** Fox News, MySpace To Team Up On Citizen Journalism Feature *** Internet Providers Try To Charge More As Costs Fall *** WATCH: Sam Donaldson: Before He Dies, I Want To Ask Castro If He Killed Kennedy *** Sen. John Kerry to Hold Hearings on Newspaper Industry The hearings will be at the Senate Commerce Committee, and are set to begin April 30. They come at a time when numerous newspapers are in bankruptcy protection or seeking cost savings, including the Boston Globe which has threatened to close or sell if certain union concessions are not made *** Moody's May Downgrade Gannett to 'Junk' *** Google to Host 'Media Execs Tech Summit' *** Sunday Morning: “Time Warp” or “Golden Age?” *** Why E-Books Are as Big as Gutenberg *** NYT, DETROIT FREE PRESS WIN PULITZERS FOR SEX SCANDALS COVERAGE... DEVELOPING... layoff victims among honorees *** TiVo Challenging Nielsen On Local Ratings *** New York Times Wins Five Pulitzers