Monday, September 17, 2012

NYP See A Comptroller Puppet, NYT Sees Very Little and the Daily News Wants Everyone to See Better

Voters Annoyed by Hard-to-Read Ballots(NYT)

DiNapoli Cover Up
The NYP Calls DiNapoli Silver Puppet Because Silver Built Him

DiNapoli said last month he had nothing to do with the $103,000 payout that settled the Gropez scandal — the serial sexual attacks perpetrated by Assemblyman Vito Lopez and the efforts of Assembly Speaker Shelly Silver to cover them up. But that was all baloney.  DiNapoli’s office actually wrote portions of the settlement and advised Assembly lawyers throughout, according to internal e-mails released through a Freedom of Information Law request filed by The Post. DiNapoli was installed in his office by Shelly Silver in 2007. So when Silver told him to pony up the $103,000 settlement, DiNapoli did exactly that.

Breaking Assembly Releases Documents Listing Sexual Harassment Settlement(NYT)

Were are the Goo Goos and NYT Editorials Demanding Direct Elections for Comptroller Vacancies?

New York Post columnist asked: “Who watches Tom DiNapoli?”
The worst scandal (Gelinas, NYP) Who watches Tom DiNapoli? The scandal surrounding Brooklyn Assemblyman Vito Lopez is about more than the groping, more even than the coverup. It’s about Albany’s lack of checks and balances when it comes to sending taxpayer money out the door. Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver approved a $103,080 payment out of taxpayer funds to quash the cases. He kept the public, if not the public’s money, out of it. Silver has to bring in state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli — or at least his staff. The victimized women got their checks not from Silver but from DiNapoli’s office, written to the women’s lawyers for “legal services.”DiNapoli’s office seems to think its job was to provide private banking services to Silver. Indeed, DiNapoli — the literal gatekeeper of taxpayer money — has no real system in place to vet these types of “settlements,” especially those that involve one elected official protecting another.
Such deals (one hopes, anyway) are unique and should go straight to the top. * Speaker’s pet(NYP Ed) The Post scoff that it is “impossible to believe” State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli was not aware of the details of Assemblyman Vito Lopez’s secret harassment settlement because DiNapoli wrote portions of it.  * Sheldon Silver still has Assembly's 'strong backing' despite Vito Lopez scandal(Newsday)* NY can't tolerate Silver's inaction(TU) * City GOP targets Silver's kids(NYP)  * 'Lopez' Special Prosecutor Can Scrutinize Silver RoleThe Chief-Leade

The cozy relationship between Sheldon Silver, the Met Council, and Bruce RatnerI know I'm late on this, but let's take another look at the cozy relationship between Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, and developer Forest City Ratner. There's nothing illegal, just another episode of the questionable one-hand-washes-the-other power configuration that seems so prevalent in the city and state. (Atlantic Yard Report)

Your Daily Batra JCOPE
   Your Daily Batra, or: How to save JCOPE * Former JCOPE Commissioner Ravi Batra proposed a host of reforms for the embattled ethics watchdog.*Why Shelly Silver Must Resign  Susan Del Percio * NY Assembly speaker seen losing clout with Governor Cuomo - Reuters Extras - Former JCOPE Commissioner Ravi Batra proposed a host of reforms for the embattled ethics watchdog. E
* Seiler: How can we replace Ravi Batra? (TU)

O'Hara Gets Hit With Felony For Voting From Wrong Address, Will Silver Power Protect Him From Charges?
John O'Hara Was Convicted of A Felony  For twelve months in 1992-1993, he lived in two apartments in Brooklyn.[4][5] Both were in the same voting district.[5][12] He had never voted more than once in any election.[5] The charge was that he had claimed the wrong one for voting purposes.[4][5]
sentenced to five years probation, an $20,000 fine, and 1,500 hours of community service picking up garbage.[13] The case also resulted in his disbarment on November 10, 1997.[2][5]
Assemblyman Sheldon Silver Pestered By Yet Another Potential Felony(Village Voice) "The election law is clear that voters have wide latitude to vote from the residence they choose, so long as they are not dually registered. They all vote from only one place, and under New York law that is clearly legal," Silver spokesman Michael Whyland said in a statement to the paper. "Latitude" is one thing -- flat-out not living in the district in which you vote is another; in fact, it's a misdemeanor in most cases and a felony in others. In 1996, O'Hara was charged under an almost completely disused law requiring that one's voting registration must be based on one's "fixed permanent and principal home": People v. O'Hara became the first-ever conviction under this law.[4] For twelve months in 1992-1993, he lived in two apartments in Brooklyn.[4][5]

Both were in the same voting district.[5][12] He had never voted more than once in any election.[5] The charge was that he had claimed the wrong one for voting purposes.[4][5] Refusing any plea deal, after a mistrial and a reversal on appeal, O'Hara was convicted of a felony in July 1999, sentenced to five years probation, an $20,000 fine, and 1,500 hours of community service picking up garbage.[13] The case also resulted in his disbarment on November 10, 1997.[2][5] * 2001 Court Case: No. 78 People v. John O'Hara

T to Cuomo: Call Moreland Maybe
NYT Admits: "The Legislature has never been able to investigate itself. Without state and federal prosecutors, Albany would never have been called to account for the long list of indictments, arrests and convictions that have occurred in recent years."  
The First Test for Albany’s Ethicists(NYT) The tangled controversy surrounding Assemblyman Vito Lopez has presented the ethics commission with its first big challenge.The Times questions the viability of the state ethics commission and encourages Cuomo to keep the option of creating his own investigative panel “on the table” since the Legislature “has never been able to investigate itself” * The New York Times says Cuomo should keep the Moreland Act commission option “on the table” for investigating the Assemblyman Vito Lopez scandal because “the Legislature has never been able to investigate itself.”* The News suggests reforms to the state ethics commission, including a public vote and application for investigation, since the group is “struggling for credibility”:Daily News wants JCOPE overhauled "to show respect for the people's right to know what's being done in their name" JCOPE Leaks The TU’s Fred LeBrun suggests Albany County DA David Soares, who “has experience in dealing with gubernatorial egomaniacs” thanks to his Troopergate probe days, should be involved in investigating potential JCOPE leaks, which seems to go all the way to the top.

What Does the NYT Think? Their Editorial Has Not Opinion
"Complicating the commission’s task, the Lopez scandal has engulfed Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, who helped negotiate a deal to use $103,000 in public money to help settle claims by two of the women, as well as the offices of Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, who appear to have signed off on the deal. The commission’s assignment is to see whether this payment constitutes a flagrant abuse of public trust." 

DiNapoli's Legal Insider Pension Trading
The biggest risk is the state’s $150.3 billion pension fund. Remember, DiNapoli is the sole trustee of that fund. (The city’s pensions funds, and other states’ funds, including California’s ones, have many trustees.)
And the New York fund has contracts worth billions with hedge funds and Wall Street firms. These contracts, too, are secret, as they contain supposedly competitive information the Wall Streeters don’t want outsiders to know.That means the only behind-the-scenes scrutiny of the state pension fund comes from other elected officials — Silver’s Assembly, the state Senate and the state AG. But guess what? DiNapoli, as payments controller, has access to their secrets. And they know it. Checks and balances are working — just not for the public.

The NYT Forgets the Why of Vito's Victory Over Restler
Show of Strength for Brooklyn Democratic Machine(NYT)
From the NYT:
"Lincoln Restler, may become one of Mr. Lopez’s latest casualties, a testament to the enduring strength of the scrappy assemblyman even as he prepares to hand over the reins of the party in the wake of a sexual harassment scandal involving four female employees." (True News and the other blogs have already published days ago all the info in today's NYT)

NYT Left Out the Why $$$?
The deal between Lopez and the Zaloynim that resulted in 5000 Satmar Hasidic votes for Olechowski.  The deal includes real estate, protection from sexual abuse that runs through the Brooklyn DA's office for states. Vito real estate deals with the UJO Hasdic Zaloynim is all made possible by the millions city and state pols have pumped into his non profit the Bushwick Ridgewood Senior Citizens organization, which the NYT started writing about in 1993.  Growth of a New-Age Political Machine - New York Times. It is clear the NYT does not write about Lopez real estate dealing because of Speakers Silver's involvement in deals like the no failed pfizer attempt.

Regardless of what the NYT does not write it is clear that Lopez has nothing to lose by fighting to stay alive politically by blackmailing Silver. The NYT also leaves out how Lopez uses his Bushwick Ridgewood non profit like Seabrook, Huntley and Rivera to deliver votes to himself and the candidates he supports.  It is sad how the media attacks mostly minority pols who use the non profits they control and fund for political gains but never touch white pols like Quinn who uses the millions of city $$$ given to the Highline as her own personal jobs programs and campaign fundraising tool.  Shelly Silver and Vito Lopez collaborated on some legislative shenanigans.  Or Fiddler or SeddioPork Pig Fidler's Media Friends Put Lipstick On Him | Room Eight We’re shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here! “Vito Lopez amassed power and loyalty through appointments and cheap housing.”

Campaign 2012  Republican state Sen. David Storobin has been taken to court three times in the past 11 years over nearly $10,000 in unpaid rent at his Brooklyn apartment, but Storobin says he made good on the payments, the News writes * Leaders in the Asian American, labor and business communities will voice their concerns about the ongoing federal investigation into NYC Comptroller John Liu’s fundraising. Confucius Plaza Community Room, 20 Bowery St., Chinatown. 1:30 p.m. * UFT went 3-for-9 with endorsements in competitive Assembly and Senate races * A Cuomo source says the usually nonpartisan governor will be “active down the home stretch” in competitive House races, and will issue more than his standard paper endorsements.* Accordingly, Mr. Espaillat’s spokesman Ibrahim Khan, referencing Mark Gjonaj‘s race as well, told us last night: “We are thrilled by the strong and clear vote of confidence cast for Senator Espaillat and every other candidate he supported. The fact that Senator Espaillat won his race overwhelmingly, and helped Gabriela Rosa and Mark Gjonaj win Assembly seats in the face of stiff opposition, is a testament to his leadership in Upper Manhattan and the Bronx.” * Candidate Issues Apologies for Anti-Gay Mailer(NYO) * Both Sides Now Airing Ads in Staten Island Congressional Race [Video] * Hakeem Jeffries Takes a Victory Lap(NYO) *
Supporters of call for investigation to end. Say Liu is persecuted and make allusion to Nazi Germany. Full report * Frank Rich Turns Into a Republican (NY Mag) * As expected, Democrat-turned-Republican Doe Fund founded George T. McDonald has registered as a candidate in the 2013 NYC mayor’s race. * NYC Councilman/House hopeful Dan Halloran plans to attend a fundraiser for Rep. Allen West in Manhattan on Oct. 1 as the controversial congressman’s “guest.” * Assemblyman Dan Hevesi says the court ruling the MTA payroll tax unconstitutional is “a dangerous decision that cannot be allowed to stand.” * Congressman-to-be Hakeem Jeffries took a victory lap with his preferred successor, Assemblyman-to-be Walter Mosley. * Councilman Sanders’s protege to run for vacated seat(NYDN)

CAMPAIGN NOTEBOOK: Flushing primary winners band together for general election (NYDN) Nily Rozic’s win over Jerry Iannece for Assembly seat sparks anger in his Bayside Hills neighborhood

Somebody they should look closely at, a bit more time on. The whole Boyland family”  Major Owens
Former Congressman Major Owens was defending John Liu at a pres conference, but don’t expect his sympathies to extend to all embattled politicians. After he finished speaking, we asked Mr. Owens about what he made of Assemblyman William Boyland being reelected last week. “I was very disheartened by that. Because he had six opponents, it was uncontrollable,” Mr. Owens, who used to represent at least parts of Mr. Boyland’s Brownsville-based district, responded. “He’s somebody they should look closely at, a bit more time on. The whole Boyland family.”

Media Allows Mayoral Candidates Pick and Choose Their Issues and Comments
2013 Hopefuls Shout Huzzahs Over Walmart Snub (NYO)

BOE Computer Counting System Still Slower Than Poll Workers Hand Count
A bunch of no-counts(NYDN Ed) There was an experiment Thursday night to determine whether the Board of Elections was ready to join the 21st century computer age. Of course it wasn’t.  When the polls closed that evening, the board counted the votes from the primary election two ways: by its much-ridiculed system of tallying by hand, and by uploading returns from memory sticks inside the electronic vote-scanning machines.  Unbelievably, poll workers got the job done faster by printing out the results on long strips of paper, cutting the strips by election district, writing down totals by district, adding up all the totals and delivering them to a police station for manual entry into a computer.

Fracks of life – & death – for NY pol(Dicker, NYP) One of the state Legislature’s leading backers of “hydrofracking’’ for natural gas has received death threats from what he believes are environmental radicals opposed to the controversial drilling technique, The Post has learned.  “There have been repeated threats to me of bodily harm,’’ Deputy Senate Majority Leader Thomas Libous (R-Binghamton) angrily told The Post.

Village Voice March 7, 2012
Police Reports Suggest Officers May Sometimes Portray Crimes Less Seriously(NYT) The integrity of the Police Department’s crime statistics has been questioned as accounts emerge by officers who say they are being pressured to reduce the number of felony incidents reported. Draining Hard Truth from NYPD Crime Reports: How does being hit by a bullet become a scrape from a fall?  New York police officers portray a less serious account of crimes than the district attorneys or victims, according to a review of more than 100 police reports. "102 people were convicted of felony assault, despite the police’s having classified the crime as a misdemeanor"

Billionaire braggadocio(Queens Crap)

From the Village Voice:

...Hizzoner announced he expects to see nearly $2 billion cut from his final budget the next fiscal year. That amount comes out to about 3% of the total budget as a whole, meaning that these cuts are going to be deep and their impact on New Yorkers' lives even deeper. And the targets of this setback ring out this message even louder: in a rare occasion, the NYPD will be on the chopping block.

From the NY Magazine:

"I just spent roughly $600 million of my own money to try to stop the scourge of tobacco, and I'm looking for another cause," Bloomberg said, reminding everyone that he can literally burying people under his piles of money.

So why don't you fix what you messed up by betting all our money on taxi medallion sales that won't be happening, and donate your billions to the city instead of stopping people in Uganda from smoking and eating trans fats?

By the way, there's plenty of city money to gIve raises to Bloomberg's staffers...
City Council members criticized Bloomberg 4 giving some staffers promotions w/ raise$

Staten Island pols settle matters with a stickball bat (SI Advance)

Liu Supporter Virginia Kee Compaires the His FBI Investigation to the Holocaust
Allies Compare Federal Probe of John Liu to Holocaust(NYO) Among those speaking out against the feds were former Rep. Major Owens, who blasted the 18 month-long investigation as “Nixonian,” and District Leader Virginia Kee, who used even sharper rhetoric by invoking the Holocaust.  * Liu Supporters Invoke the Holocaust and Nixon in Faulting an F.B.I. Inquiry(NYT) * Liu Supporters Invoke the Holocaust and Nixon in Faulting an F.B.I. Inquiry(NYT)

Today, the 1-year anniversary of Occupy Wall Street, activists are planning several marches, assemblies and other activities
Update Dozens of Arrests on ‘Occupy’ Anniversary(NYT) *Arrests Near Stock Exchange Top 100 on Occupy Wall St. Anniversary(NYT) * As many as 100 arrested at protest in lower Manhattan on one-year anniversary *Journalists Arrested During Occupy Wall Street Anniversary Protests (Huff Post) * MoJo covers Occupy II

Occupy Wall Street plans protests for movement’s one-year anniversaryOccupy Wall Street plans protests for movement’s one-year anniversary(NYP) * Occupy plus one year(NYP Ed)  The Post pooh-poohs Occupy Wall Street’s weekend of “politically pointless events” and dubs its annniversay march a “nostalgic trip down Nonsense Lane”
 Rallies Planned for Occupy Wall Street Anniversary(NYT) * Arrests Mark Protesters' Return to N.Y.(WSJ) * Occupy Wall Street Holds Concert On Eve Of Movement's Anniversary(NY1) * OWS Marks One Year Anniversary With Marches, Rallies(WCBS) * OWS protesters arrested near NYSE, no sign of 'people's wall' on anniversary(NYP) * The Bull Tied to Occupy Wall Street(NYT)  * Over 100 OWS protesters arrested near NYSE on anniversary(NYP) * More Than 100 Arrested As OWS Marks 1 Year Anniversary With(WCBS) * Close To 200 Arrested As OWS Marks 1-Year Anniversary With(WCBS)

OWS Protesters Mark One Year With Same Message, Smaller Crowd(NY1)

Councilmen Jumaane Williams and Ydanis Rodriguez were down at the Occupy festivities today, and as you can see from the photo Mr. Williams tweeted, they found the 15-foot “Bain Job Destroyer” puppet. Mr. Williams also took issue with the New York Post editorial dismissing the protest, and tweeted, “@NYPostOpinion pooh-pooh this. Occupy is well represented today.”* Arrests Near Stock Exchange Top 150 on Occupy Wall St. Anniversary(NYT)

MTA Increases With No Improvement In Service
Insiders say MTA will reveal fare-hike proposals (NYDN) * MTA is rai$ing havoc(NYP)
Straphangers could face even larger subway fare hikes than already planned because of a potential $100 million hole in the MTA’s budget. The looming crisis is the result of 64 of the agency’s 65 employee unions operating without a contract, a rare occurrence that could blow the agency’s already fragile budget apart and force even bigger fare hikes than the ones set for March. * Another Fare Hike?(Huff Post) * New Subway Exit Opens Near Barclays Center(NY1)
* Transit Chief’s Latest Fearless Move: Using Twitter on His Own(NYT)


The city’s construction industry is getting a boost as universities continue to expand, but construction spending as of May 2012 is down 12 percent compared with five years ago, the Wall Street Journal reports: * Pace University expanding in Lower Manhattan(Fox 5)

Cheating Upwards Stuyvesant kids do it.(NY Mag) Harvard kids do it. Smart kids may especially do it. But why?

Now that Bloomberg has successfully targeted big sugary drinks in NYC, could oversized servings of food be next?

City using free power lawyer to evict Astor Place newsstand iconCity using free power lawyer to evict Astor Place newsstand icon(NYP) * Newsstand owner fights eviction from Astor Place locati(Fox 5)

Joe Biden has been a “good vice president,” if he does say so himself.

New Territory for Ads, With a Moving Target(NYT) MetroCards, bus windows and digital technology have become new mechanisms for advertisements around the city.


Seaport Museum Charts New Course(WSJ)Nearly a year after taking over the floundering South Street Seaport Museum, Susan Henshaw has sold or made plans to sell four of its deteriorating vessels, started repairs on others, boosted attendance and put the institution's $4.4 million operating budget on track to end the calendar year with a surplus.

The Making of A President 2012
Chaos over Romney’s RNC speech revealedChaos over Romney’s RNC speech revealed(NYP) * Netanyahu likens Iran's weapons potential to Oklahoma City bombing in TV interview(NYP) *
New Romney ad, strikes me as the first ad the campaign should have unveiled after their convention. * POLITICO: Romney campaign infighting... 
The Magnitude of the Mess We're In - Shultz, et al., Wall Street Journal
GOP Hating on Ben Bernanke - Paul Krugman, New York Times
Obama Fiddles as Mideast Burns - Niall Ferguson, Newsweek
The Obama Doctrine: Act Cautiously & Not Alone - Paul Richter, LA Times
Media Working Overtime to Protect Obama - Joe Curl, Washington Times
Why Romney and Ryan Are Going Down - Robert Reich, Huffington Post
How the Media Misrepresents the Race - Jay Cost, Weekly Standard
How Romney Stumbled - Mike Allen & Jim Vandehei, Politico
Woodward Book Dissects a Failed Presidency - Conn Carroll, DC Examiner
The Grand Old Straight White Men's Party - Bill Keller, New York Times
Bottom Line: US Worse Off Under Obama - Jennifer Braceras, Boston Herald
Will Ad Fatigue Mute GOP's Late Barrage? - Scott Conroy, RealClearPolitics
Ben's Latest Move Has a Desperate Air - Robert Samuelson, Washington Post
The Puppetry of Quotation Approval - David Carr, New York Times
Appeasing Thugs By Trampling Our Rights - Andrea Peyser, New York Post
How Child Molesters Get Away With It - Malcolm Gladwell, The New Yorker
Chicago Teachers Union Is Out of Control - Mark Brown, Chicago Sun-Times
Sunday Panels: FOX News Sunday | This Week | FTN | Meet the Press

Mitt Romney abruptly shifts strategy (Politico)
Obama admin asks WTO to accelerate its investigation of Chinese levies on U.S.-made cars(Wash Times)

Newsweek’s ‘Muslim Rage’ cover coincides with critique of Tina Brown USA Today columnist Michael Wolff, a big name brought in to stoke much-needed buzz at a legacy publication trumpeting its reinvention as an Internet-age news organization, slams Newsweek Editor Tina Brown for bringing in big names and trying to stoke much-needed buzz at the legacy publication she’s trying to reinvent as an Internet-age news organization.

Three Reasons We Should Salute Bernanke - John Cassidy, The New Yorker
In Fact, We're Going Backward - Ralph Reiland, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
America's Mideast Policies in Shambles - Michael Barone, DC Examiner
Obama Handling Libya, Egypt Situations Well - Leslie Gelb, Daily Beast
The Administation Is Still Apologizing - Ben Stein, The American Spectator
Romney Campaign Is in Trouble - Ezra Klein, Washington Post
Mitt Romney's Worst Week Ever - Francis Wilkinson, Bloomberg
The Media's Spin for Obama Is Running on Empty - Ed Morrissey, Hot Air
Thanks to Ryan, Dems Gain Upper Hand - Robert Kuttner, Huffington Post
Wisconsin Moves Into Full Battleground Status - Lynn Sweet, Chicago ST
The Biggest Lie of 2012 - Glenn Cook, Las Vegas Review-Journal
Teachers' Strike: Chicago's Just the Beginning - Josh Eidelson, Salon
Election '12: State RCP Averages | Tracking Polls: Obama Bounce Fades

Romney Calls 47% of Voters Dependent in Leaked Video(NYT)

Mitt Romney (R-1percent) trashes the 47 percent 
 Romney in secret fundraiser video: 47 percent backing Obama like government-sponsored programs (Politico) * Romney aide responds to video: He wants to help everyone 'struggling in the Obama economy'(Politico)

No Arab Spring
Devout Values Conflict With Free Speech in Muslim Rage(NYT) * Video Shows Libyans Moving Envoy’s Body(NYT) * U.N. Reports Sharp Jump in Attacks on Syrian Civilians(NYT) * Raid on NATO Base Is Reminder of Taliban Reach(NYT)

Law and Order

Wife’s angry messages cited at former NYPD cop’s murder trial(NYP)

Brother in West Virginia offers Bible to Central Park 'rapist'(NYP)

Gadget watch may reveal mob rats (NYDN)

Man Arraigned On Charges Connected To Two Violent Manhattan Rapes(NY1)* Don’t free James Zappalorti's remorseless killer: victim's (NYDN) * Suspect Sought in String of Bronx Robberies(NBC) * Anti-violence rally planned after shooting of Staten Island (SI Advance)* BX Hypodermic Needle Robber Strikes Again(NBC)