Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The One Liner Mayoral Campaign Becomes One Word

Affor d able Brainwashing

The money-tree challenge to pols(Goodwin,NYP)You got to find money to make makes things afforable, but from where?  The pols sell “affordability” as a magic antidote to the fact that the middle class is being squeezed out of New York.

The word is “affordable,” and New Yorkers had better get used to hearing it. It is a code word among the candidates hoping to succeed Mayor Bloomberg. Public Advocate Bill de Blasio used a version of it six times in his announcement speech Sunday. He said that the city needed more “affordable housing” and that many parents lack “child care and afterschool programs they can afford.” Former Comptroller Bill Thompson said he would focus on “affordable mass transit” and “quality, affordable housing.” Council Speaker Christine Quinn pushes a program that would require new housing units to be “affordable” for 60 years!

Content Free Reporting ... Reporters Are Not Doing Their Jobs
A weak press allows the 2013 candidates free to wage essentially content-free campaignsCharge of the lightweights(NYP) Good times = weak candidates? NYP's Goodwin blames unions for all of NYC budget problems.  He forgets about the billions wasteed on Citytime, 911 and dozens of other IT city contracts.* Mayor Bloomberg CityTime Koch CitiSource 3 Term Mega Scandals Press Glosses over, Adrian Schoolcraft betray(Artist)

When was the last time you heard a reporter ask a NYC mayoral candidate to  reduce the sky-high cost of government? Or What is Their Plan to Reduce Uemployment?

 The Feds Have Sammy the Bull Huntley
Huntley Speaks And the Guessing Game Starts As to Who is Next To Enter Club Fed

Assemblywoman Vivian Cook also funded the non profit that Huntley used as her personal piggy bank
Former Sen. Shirley Huntley pleads guilty to conspiracy to commit mail fraud in #brooklyn federal court*  Shirley Huntley Pleads Guilty to Embezzlement Charges  Setting her up to face up to five years of imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 when sentenced. The charges stem from a Queens non-profit that received government funds–earmarked by Ms. Huntley–to educate parents about the city’s public school system. However, according to federal prosecutors, approximately $87,700 of the cash instead went for her personal use. * Huntley Pleads Guilty To Defrauding State Of $87K - As expected, former Queens Sen. Shirley Huntley has pleaded guil...(YNN) * Fmr. State Senator Huntley Pleads Guilty To Fraud(NY1) * Ex-Sen. Huntley pleads guilty to mail fraud(NYP) * Former State Senator Huntley Pleads Guilty To Fraud(NY1)
Huntley Plea To Mail Fraud The Who Who Did It Has Made A Lot of Pols Very Scared (True News)

Campaign 2013

Today's Great Example of A Blogger Spinning A Campaign Consultants Crap
Thrill Bill: Thompson Is Ready to Bust Out of His Boring Brand ‘Bit by Bit’(NYO) by Colin Campbell (kissing the ass of Thompson Consultant Sheinkopf) This article is about pizazz“We can get him to drop some F-bombs if you want,” he said. “If that’s going to make your story better. “It was less about a political background than it was public service. My mother was a public school teacher,” he said of a youth spent in Bedford-Stuyvesant in the 1950s and ’60s.(All that is missing from Thompson talk about his family is the de blasio type picture in front of his house with his kid with the Afro) The entire article does not mention one issues that Thompson would push for.  It is a pep talk about how he is unenthused and inactive. A lot of inside baseball horse race crap about the 2009 campaign and how he has been able to raise $1million in the last filing.  The whole article by Mr. Campbell is more an attempt by Sheinkopf to show Thompson that he was doing a good job rather than attempt to win votes to Thompson showing how he differs on the issues

de Blasio Magic Money
Why does a parking ticket in central Manhattan cost $115? Because the city must pay that $8 billion in pensions costs   
In the Same stump speech that de Blasio blasts the city hurting driving small business with ticket blitzes he calls for more services and programs that will diver the cost of city services up requiring more tickets to be given outDe Blasio is right to defend small business - Queens Chronicle ...

Fox Anchor Says Bill de Blasio Has ‘Special Power to Silence Viewpoints’(NYO)

Where Will The Additional Tax Revnue Come From? 
City tax revenues have nearly doubled, from over $21 billion a year to more than $42 billion, since Bloomberg took office. How much more in taxes and spending do the candidates think it will take to keep their promises of “affordability?” And who is going to pay those taxes?

Not Wall Street NY's Dying $$$ Goose 

NY's Wall Street Over
In 2008, Wall Street covered about $4.5 billion of the city’s tax payments — 12 percent of the total. Last year, it was $2.8 billion — 7 percent.  The state, meanwhile, got $8.7 billion from the securities industry last year, or 14 percent of its tax dollars. That was down from $12 billion — or 20 percent — in 2008.
Losing NY’s golden goose(NYP)

Hidden Taxes Cause $115 Tickets and High Con Edision Bills
Why does a parking ticket in central Manhattan cost $115? Because the city must pay that $8 billion in pensions. Why are electricity costs so high? Partly because your Con Ed bill is hiding the enormous property taxes and fees the city adds to the cost of electricity.

2013 Mayoral Candidates Act More Like Fake Medicine Men
The leading mayoral candidates won’t tell you any of this because they are competing for the support of the people who benefit most from the high cost structure. The union bosses are powerful puppeteers. So instead of going after the source of rising prices, the pols sell “affordability” as a magic antidote to the fact that the middle class is being squeezed out of New York.the pols are promising additional subsidies for more people. From housing to child care to transit, they’re saying that, as mayor, they would make life cheaper for nearly everybody else by taking more money from a few wealthy taxpayers.

Missing from the promises is the action that would make New York more affordable: reducing the sky-high cost of government. No one singing in the affordable chorus is ready to admit that or, more importantly, do anything about it.

Damn Yankees UFT
"the four Democrats running for mayor would swap their souls for a full-throated UFT endorsement"

A Democratic Club in Chelsea Continues Its War on Christine Quinn(NYO)* NYC Council Speaker Christine Quinn’s well-timed memoir has a cover.

NY1 Online: McDonald Makes Case For Mayor

The 99 Cent Mayor Offer's Few Clues To What Programs or Policies He Would Follow

Welcome to A Billionare Dream to Save NYC
NYT: unconventional campaign speech
Fat ‘Cat’ is mayor race’s discount king (NYP) Supermarket mogul John Catsimatidis wants to be the city’s next billionaire mayor — and he’s willing to do the job at a discount. “I was a grocer, I’ll work for 99 cents,”* Catsimatidis Announces Bid for Mayor(NYT)Proposes jump-starting New York’s economy by reviving the World’s Fair. * Grocery Store Mogul Throws Hat Into Mayoral Race(NY1) * NY1 Online: Catsimatidis Makes Case For Mayor(NY1) Revive the 64 Worlds Fair and Vocational HS* Republican John Catsimatidis hits 'maintenance' man Lhota, thanks God for Obama  * Castamitidis: 'Make Another Billion or Give Four Years to New York City' *Are Everyday New Yorkers Open to Another Billionaire Mayor?(NY Mag) * Though Melinda Katz won't be supporting John Catsimatidis, he has supported her to the tune of $6,350 * Curtis Sliwa’s support of GOP NYC mayoral candidate John Catsimatdis could put him in the doghouse with his live-in Democratic girlfriend, Queens BP candidate Melinda Katz.

John Liu Political Life Goes On Trial
Solicitations by Liu Aide Will Be Focus in Fraud Case(NYT) RT Fed prosecutor says jury in campaign $ trial could "infer that their actions were coordinated” . aide "is expected to testify for the government under an order of immunity...The aide, Sharon Lee, who once served as press secretary for the comptroller’s office, is expected to testify for the government under an order of immunity at the trial next week of Mr. Liu’s former campaign treasurer, Jia Hou, a federal prosecutor said in court.*
A former press secretary for New York City Comptroller John Liu will testify that she sought illegal straw donations from her family and friends for his campaign, while Liu’s lawyer insists he knew nothing, the Post reports:* 
Chinese-Language Media Tell A Different Story Of Liu’s Ordeal (City and State)| * Aides Go to Trial, but Liu Faces Judgment (NYt)

Nonsense One Liners That Tell the Voter Nothing About What the Candidates Will Do As Mayor
Today's Candidate Snaps
Catsimatidis:"I’m going to be the mayor of everybody. ...politicians have kept our poorer neighborhoods stuck. They’re stuck on being poor."
“I am going to work cheaper than Mayor Bloomberg. I was a grocer. I work for 99 cents.”
Christine Quinn brought her own hair stylist, New York magazine gave her the black trench 

Teaching is difficult work. We don't show teachers enough respect and admiration.

Tom Allon tells de Blasio taxing rich isn't solution; rich will leave the city. De Blasio's response: "I’ll meet you outside for that."

In a literary move often employed by presidential candidates, Council Speaker Christine Quinn will release a memoir, “With Wisdom and Fortitude,” as she campaigns for Mayor of New York City.  “Chris is an expert multitasker and will be able to simultaneously be speaker, be a candidate, and be an author,” her chief campaign strategist, Josh Isay, told The New York Times.

NYC Budget

Final Budget

 CITY BUDGET OVERSHADOWED BY MISSING EDUCATION FUNDS: Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced a balanced budget yesterday with no tax hikes, but his ongoing battle with the United Federation of Teachers on teacher evaluations left a glaring hole in education funding(City and State)* Mayor's Final Budget Is Aided by Economy(WSJ)\ * Mayor's Final Budget Balanced Despite State Funding Dent(NY1) * NY1 Online: Mayor Delivers 2014 Budget Address * NY1 Online: City Budget Director And Press Secretary Discuss Preliminary Budget * Mayor Offers Balanced Budget — But At What Cost? - NEW YORK — Mayor Michael Bloomberg has proposed a $70.1 billion (Gotham Gazette)

NYS Government

2013 LEGISLATIVE PREVIEW: Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the Legislature could be in for a busy year, dealing with a minimum wage hike, hydrofracking, a Women’s Rights Act and more. City & State previews these big issues, from health care and education to construction and casinos

Pension Smoothing 
S&P on Cuomo's pension smoothing: “25 years is a long time from now, and the current people will not be in office.”Dick Ravitch on pension plan: “It’s borrowing, and you’re not supposed to borrow to meet an operating deficit.” *Silver Will Side With DiNapoli On Pension Smoothing(YNN) * Cuomo Separates Miner’s Political And Governmental Roles(YNN) * Governing Magazine’s Jonathan Walters calls Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s pension smoothing proposal “puzzling, to be most generous about it.” * State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli remains undecided about the plan.

Women's Rights 
 In a speech before the state’s Conservative Party, state Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos announced his opposition to Cuomo’s plan to introduce legislation expanding abortion protections, the Times-Union reports * Abortion Rights Could Divide State Senate's Bipartisan Leaders(NY1) * The Archdiocese of New York continues to battle with the Cuomo administration over what, exactly, the Reproductive Health Act would do.

NY legislative leaders say not so fast to Cuomo plan for 3 upstate casinos; NYC outer boroughs, L.I. may be in mix * Queens leaders to oppose plans for a casino at Willets Point. Rally scheduled for February 6th. * More Than Three Casinos On Tap?(YNN)

Thruway Laying Off 234(YNN)

NYT Discovers Kelly's Gun Message

But NYT Does Not Answer Why NYC Murder Rate is So Much Lower Than Chicago
Rev Sharpton Says We Have to Do the Research On Why NYC Murder Rate is So Much Lower Than Chicago... We Must Ask the Mayor Candidates to Answer Why Chicago is Higher?
Since Sat Chicago has seen 11 people shot dead

Strict Gun Laws in Chicago Can’t Reduce Fatal Shots(NYT)

Kelly Scourge of NYC’s streets(NYP)
Ninety percent, or 2,493, of the 2,779 illegal firearms seized from suspects in arrests in the city last year were handguns. By contrast, a total of 77 assault weapons were seized in arrests in the city, less than 3 percent of the total. In only three of nearly 1,400 shooting incidents last year were ballistics associated with assault weapons.* Buyback Yields 700 Illegal Weapons(WSJ)

Chicago teen who performed at inaugural events shot dead

Chicago teen who performed at inaugural events killed (Wash Post) * White House: Inaugural teen death another example of need for action on guns(Politico)

Gun Control Takes A Toll On Cuomo Poll Numbers  . . . Gun Groups File Notice of Plans To Sue Over Gov. Cuomo's 'Unconstitutional' Gun Control Law
In the latest Quinnipiac poll, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s approval rating dropped from 74 percent to 59 percent, with 68 percent of voters in homes without guns approving of him compared with 50 percent in households with guns: * Gun Rights Backers, Stung by Cuomo’s Law, Push to Undo It(NYT) State gun rights advocates are taking steps against New York’s recently enacted gun control legislation, including circulating petitions and preparing a legal challenge to the law. Misleading Q poll headline: Gov down with Dems, Reps and Indies, not just Reps.Cuomo down 8 points with Dems, 16 points with independents, and a whopping 24 points with Republicans! New Q poll.BIG 15 point drop for Gov. Cuomo in wake of his new (anti-)gun bill. Down even with Democrats.* Cuomo: Poll Drop Reflects Political ‘Sensitivity’ Over Gun Control(YNN) *Support Suffers Big Drop, Quinnipiac Poll Finds(NYT) * Five states courting Remington Arms away from New York * Poll: Cuomo's popularity takes a hit from gun owners, Republicans (SI Advance) * "It's not my law," Cuomo admin criminal justice chief tells angry gun owners.

Giffords tells Congress 'you must act' to curb gun violence
BREAKING: Wounded former Congresswoman Giffords tells Congress 'you must act' to curb gun violence.WATCH: Gabby Giffords' emotional testimony at gun hearing: "Too many children are dying"Congress Takes Up Gun Violence(NYT Ed) There are many good proposals on gun control, which should be debated and voted on in full public view* What Makes a Gun an Assault Weapon?(NY Mag) * Patrick Leahy: No backing for assault weapons ban: * Bloomberg PAC goes after NRA ally Halvorson with new ad  *Giffords asks Congress for bold gun control bill at Senate hearing(NYP) * Giffords Urges Action at Gun Hearing(NYT) * Gabrielle Giffords meeting with Obama at White House (Wash Post) * Discussions Underway For Gun Law Changes(YNN) * Giffords Implores Senate to Act at Hearing on Guns(NYT) * Cuomo’s Support Falls After His Push for Gun Limits(NYT) * Here are former Rep. Gabby Giffords’ handwritten notes to herself for her testimony on Capitol Hill this morning. * Rep. Chris Gibson expects the U.S. Supreme Court will deem New York’s new gun control law unconstitutional.* Washington Beat: Giffords Urges Congress To "Be Bold" On Gun Laws(NY1)


Teach eval can turn lo$$ into gain: Mike (NYP) Presenting the final budget of his tenure at City Hall, Mayor Bloomberg declared yesterday that “suffering” would result from the failure to secure a teacher-evaluation pact — but it would all be worth it if schools ultimately get the right to boot poor teachers.The buck stops . . . where?(NYP Ed) The News writes that United Federation of Teachers President Michael Mulgrew’s testimony at a legislative budget hearing in Albany proved that he wants “a patsy” to take over the mayor’s office so he can get what he wants: *  In the Post, Bob McManus examines the Democratic candidates for New York City mayor and their “content-free” campaigns with the exception of their courting the United Federation of Teachers endorsement:  *New city budget would cut 1,800 teaching jobs(NYDN)* Gov. Cuomo To City And Union: Enact A Teacher Eval System Or State Will Do It For You(NYDN) * Cuomo Forces Evaluation Issue For NYC(YNN) * UFT Prez: End Mayoral Control Early (Web Exclusive)(YNN) * Bill Thompson describes Bloomberg's inability to reach an agreement on teacher evaluations as "derelict"* Cuomo May Force City Teacher Evaluation Deal(NY1)

Mayoral Candidate on Education
de Blasio hurls high hard at Eva Moskowitz ... "She cannot continue to have the run" of Tweed* Tom Allon says principals should be empowered, not building managers. Says let APs be managers. Not great msg for CSA, which includes APs * .: "We have to start stepping away from standardized tests." Says evals should be based on portfolios, classroom observation.* Develop teacher evals in collaboration with educators, with the shared goal of helping teachers teach.* We are already far too focused on standardized testing — we have to steer away from them, not add more weight* . at education forum: "The goal of teacher evaluations is not to get rid of teachers; it's to help teachers improve & succeed."* Quinn puts on Council speaker hat to say of Bloomberg's cost-cutting plans:"we're not going to allow excessive attrition this yr, period"* Bill de Blasio says that in some cases, it is appropriate to break big schools into smaller ones * We MUST provide Pre-K for every child who needs it if we want to actually address the equity issues in this city.

Talking Education, 2013 NYC Mayoral Candidates Keep Bashing Bloomberg, Not Each Other(NYDN)* Bill de Blasio says he would get rid of Bloomberg's Leadership Academy and ensure all teachers are educators* Thompson says Boys & Girls Hs used be great before Bloomberg ( don't think that was true; mickens pushed out kids)* Chris Quinn also seems to disapprove of blanket bias against big schools * Liu thinks its "wrongheaded" to turn big high schools into smaller ones * Bill de Blasio says that in some cases, it is appropriate to break big schools into smaller ones * ! “: Bill de Blasio stresses his "outer boro" cred in back-and-forth with Tom Allon”Allon, Liu brag abt going to Stuy, Bronx Sci. Quinn: "I was not smart enough 2 go to Bronx Science or Stuyvesant, let me be clear abt that."* Final question for candidates: Have schools made progress under Bloomberg. Quinn, going first, says yes, to hisses.* I and my wife Jenny are both proud products of New York City public schools. As will be our son, Joey.Liu: strongest no; Bloomberg not a success if unlook at results on national tests (NAEPs) tru! * Prospective Candidates For Mayor Discuss Education (NY1)

During a joint budget hearing, State Education Commissioner John King outlined the Board of Regents’ request for a 3.5 percent increase in funding for the state’s public schools, The Wall Street Journal writes:

Tutor helped himself in $2.3M scam: feds(NYP)His lesson plan included forgery and fraud, according to the feds.* NYC sub teacher accused of tutoring scam(WSJ)

Replacement Bus Drivers
Bus Strike Leads To Round-The-Clock Security For Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott
Picket Lines Expected As Replacement School Bus Drivers Report To Work Tuesday(NY1) * Replacement Bus Matrons Met With Protests(WSJ)* NYC Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott gets security detail as city brawls with two unions* Seveal speakers at board mtg say free metrocards during schoolbus strike is "union busting." * Transcript: Gabby Giffords's opening statement (Huff Puff) *Officials nix plan that would have ended school bus strike - city says union holding students 'hostage'(NYP) * School Bus Drivers’ Union Attacks City for Refusing Role in Strike(NYT) says attendance at District 75 special ed schools was 73% today, highest since v. 90.5% citywide. More buses running. *  City rejects bus driver union's 'cooling-off period'(WABC)

NYS Government

The Traveling Pols
“There’s a lot of talk of reform in Albany,” said one capital insider. “But this looks like the ‘same old, same old.’”
High on the hog: Brooklyn pol’s 77G travel bill (NYP) Taxpayers shelled more than $77,000 for lodging and meals for one Brooklyn state senator — who was traveling on “legislative business. Sen. Velmanette Montgomery racked up more per-diem expenses than any other New York state senator over a 3 1/2-year period, records show.Montgomery billed the state 26 times — including $1,250.85 for a seven-day stint in Albany from March 24-30 of last year, records show. “I’m not talking to you about that. Bye,” Montgomery said when asked for comment. Another big spender was Sen. Martin Dilan (D-Brooklyn), who billed the state for $75,022 in per-diem expenses — landing him third on the list at 73 percent above average.Sen. Diane Savino (D-SI) billed the state for $71,973, landing her in sixth place. “I never put in anything I’m not entitled to,” Savino said. “It’s an insult.”

Min-wage surprise(NYP) ALBANY — A proposed increase in New York’s minimum wage took a step forward yesterday when the state Legislature’s top Republican said he’d be open to..

NYC Government

Crane operator and contractor cited in Jan. 9 Queens collapse (NYP) A crane operator and a contractor didn't inspect equipment, failed to take proper precautions and ran the rig unsafely before it collapsed while building a New York City apartment tower and injured seven construction workers

Accord Again Rips Into Bayside Lines (Barkan)

Sandy Update

Obama Signs Sandy Relief Bill(NY1)* Numerous Rockaway Homeowners Sue LIPA Over Sandy Fires(NY1) * FDNY adds fuel to Breezy Point fire suit vs. LIPA(NYP)* Two family concerts planned to aid Staten Island victims (SI Advance) * Staten Island relief centers, set up for Sandy victims, plagued by looters (Huff Post) * Recovery of Coney Island boardwalk businesses(Fox 5)

Library Update

In Library Renderings, Stacks of Questions(NYT)

911 Update

 1st ‘Zadroga’ payouts: 15 city workers get piece of $2.8B fund(NYP) * 9/11 Health Fund Pays Out Its First 15 Awards(NYT) * 9/11 Fund Sets First Payments(WSJ) The 9/11 compensation fund gave out its first awards, ranging from $10,000 to $1.5 million, to fifteen emergency responders, while officials said the program may have fewer applicants than expected* First Payments From 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund To Go Out(NY1)

Health Care

WABC investigation into abuse allegations at group home for mentally disabled: 

MTA Update

PHOTOS: Big Progress On The Second Avenue Subway(Huff Post)

Are Subway Deaths More Common - Or Just More Noticed?(WSJ) As politicians around the city lined up to call for more action to prevent deaths in the subways this month, one question went largely unanswered: is the problem of people being struck by trains getting worse, or just getting noticed for a change?
MTA Chief Pushes Back Against TWU On Subway Slowdown (WINS)

Bloomberg Asses and Balls

Bloomberg doesn't just admire womens' asses, he also admires dudes' balls Bloomberg praises Biden for his "set of balls" (NY Mag) *Bloomberg Compliments Biden’s ‘Balls,’ Remains Less Impressed With Obama(NY Mag)

‘Bloomberg: The Musical’: He’s Not Calling the Tunes(NYT)

How NYC's Mayor Bloomberg is influencing national politics  Seeking to expand his footprint in Washington, Mr. Bloomberg has also retained multiple federal lobbyists and ramped up electoral efforts in the special election to replace former Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr., in Chicago. In particular, Mr. Bloomberg is targeting one of the candidates, former Rep. Debbie Halvorson, for her insufficient support of gun control. In response, Ms. Halvorson promptly distanced herself from the N.R.A.

Koch the Movie

New York City’s A-list politicians gathered in Manhattan for the premier of “Koch,” a documentary about former mayor Ed Koch, though Koch was absent due to his hospitalization, the News reports:

Grand Central At 100

<i>Grand Central Terminal At 100:</i> Legal Battle Nearly Led To Station's Demolition
Grand Central Terminal At 100: Legal Battle Nearly Led To Station's Demolition Fifty years after first opening, Grand Central Terminal earned landmark status. The designation should have ensured its prosperity and longevity, but in 1970s it came dangerously close to being leveled. NY1's Jon Weinstein describes the protracted battle over the terminal's fate that lead all the way to the Supreme Court.*As NYC marks iconic station's centennial, Grand Central's grand secrets revealed by the longtimers who know it best(NYDN) * Grand Central Terminal: 100 years of rich history (CBS)


Kerry wins OK for State(NYP)
Republicans Pull Back on Immigration, but Not Guns(NYT)
A Better Immigration Plan(NYT Ed) The president offered his own ideas for reform, with a citizenship path at the center of his proposal
It's P.Q. and C.Q. as Much as I.Q. - Thomas Friedman, New York Times
The Doctor's Office as Union Shop - David Leffell, Wall Street Journal
The Intertwined Fates of Rubio & Immigration - Ed Morrissey, The Week
Immigration Reform's New Fans - Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times
Why Immigration Reform Will Likely Pass - Mark Salter, RealClearPolitics
Think Again: The Muslim Brotherhood - Eric Trager, Foreign Policy
It's Too Soon to Celebrate the Economic Recovery - Peter Orszag, Bloomberg
Obama's Economy: The Excuses Begin - Tom Blumer, PJ Media
Hope or Despair? The Future of Culture - W. McClay, University Bookman
Republicans Need a Little Sensitivity Training - Charlie Cook, Natl Jrnl
Let's Meet on Medicaid, Mr. President - Gov. Bobby Jindal, Washington Post
This Is Not Your Father's NRA - Rep. Chris Murphy, Politico
Gun-Free Zones Are for the Little People - Charles Hurt, Washington Times
Bipartisan Hunting Buddies - James Baker & John Dingell, New York Times
Republicans Need to Rethink Product Line - Reed Galen, RealClearPolitics
What Sarah Palin Meant - Chris Cillizza, Washington Post
Twitter Was Once a Vision. Now It's a Prison - Matt Lewis, The Week
More Governors Look to Repeal Their Income Taxes - Wall Street Journal
Immigration Reform, Now - Los Angeles Times
Egypt's Protests Reveal Lack of Trust in Muslim Brotherhood - CS Monitor
The Fiat Dow: Measuring the Stock Rally In Gold - New York Sun
O'Reilly Confronts Colin Powell In Wide-Ranging Interview On Obama And GOP's Racial Politics  (VIDEO)

FBI raids West Palm Beach office of doctor tied to U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez - (Miami Herald)
Latino Voters Help Push Immigration Changes Forward (NPR)
Economy shrinks in fourth-quarter surprise(Politico)
Unions, Hollywood open to bankrolling Obama's advocacy arm(The Hill)
Mass. governor to name ex-aide Cowan to fill John Kerry's seat on interim basis, says person with knowledge of situation. 
: The Senate will have two black members simultaneously for the first time ever. ” How is this possible? Pathetic 
Gabby Giffords To Give Opening Remarks At Senate Hearing On Gun Violence(Huff Post) Letterman Presses Al Gore: Doing Business With Country 'That's Enabling Your Ultimate Foe Of Climate Change'  (VIDEO) * FBI raids the office of a doctor who supposedly provided Senator Bob Menendez prostitutes in the Dominican Republic.
Kerry lauds Senate in farewell speech: (Politico)

Feds raid office of doc who allegedly provided male escorts to Sen. Menendez(NYP)
Kerry choked up while delivering a 50-minute farewell address during which he called on his colleagues to end partisan gridlock and ensure the Senate remains “the world’s greatest deliberative body.”
Vitter says Rubio 'amazingly naive' about immigration(Wash Post)
People Go Where Taxes Are Low - Deroy Murdock, Orange County Register
Immigration Reform a Test for Republicans - Ana Marie Cox, The Guardian
Applying Conservative Principles to Immigration - Marco Rubio, RedState
Let's Reform Immigration for Good - Mae Ngai, New York Times
Path to Legalization, Not Citizenship, Is Answer - Ben Domenech, Transom
Republicans and the City - Edward Glaeser, City Journal
What Has Hillary Clinton Accomplished? - John Cassidy, The New Yorker
ObamaCare Sticker Shock: Not Very Shocking - Jonathan Cohn, TNR
15 Lies of Liberalism - John Hawkins, Townhall
A Woman's Place Is on Battlefield. Maybe. - Margaret Carlson, Bloomberg
Is Scientific Genius Extinct? - Ross Pomeroy, RealClearScience 

Menendez: Prostitution accusation is politically motivated(CBS)
Bipartisan group of House members are crafting their own immigration plan (Wash Post)
Obama calls staff diversity 'one of my highest priorities' (Politico)

CNN Makeover
CNN boss plays hard game (NYP) Many of CNN’s top talents were being moved around like chess...* CNN Hires, Fires Top Talents in Zucker's First Days(I Want Media) * CNN is changing a lot, but will any of it make a difference?(Huff Post) * RUPAUL TOPS PIERS MORGAN IN RATINGS SHOWDOWN!

Fox News ratings hit 12-year low:(Politico)

Time Inc. is cutting 500 staffers, thus reducing its workforce by six percent. 

 neil heslin Did Media Mislead On Video Of Newtown Father Being 'Heckled' By 'Gun Nuts'?

MSNBC criticized for editing of gun hearing video * Fox’s The Five Goes After MSNBC For Edited Video Of Sandy Hook Father Being ‘Heckled’

Fox & Friends Asks Dennis Kucinich To Defend Democrat Who Attacked Fox News From Senate Floor

Wall Street

GDP Shows Surprise Drop for U.S. in Fourth Quarter (CNBC)

New piece on Mary Jo White, includes troubling snippet of a little-known deposition she gave

Law and Order

Sanitation worker informant recorded 530 days worth of secret meetigs used in massive mob bust

Cop killed self because female boss made him trade sex for good schedule: wife's suit(NYP)

Police interrogate child, 7, for 10 hours — all over missing $5: family(NYP) * Boy cuffed, held after taking kid's money(NYDN) * Lawsuit Claims Bronx Boy Was Falsely Arrested, Kept In Handcuffs In Precinct (NY1) * Family Claims Police Kept Handcuffed Bronx Boy In Precinct Following False Arrest(NY1)
Yeshiva leader may have raped boy(NYDN)
Officials: Bronx Women Busted At JFK With Cocaine In ‘D (WCBS)

Lawyers want to show this shocking photo(NYP) * Images Complicate Jury Selection in Cannibalism Case(NYT) * Cop turned 'cannibal' because of Cameron Diaz in 'The Mask':(NY1)

Jury: EMT raped and raped again(NYDN)
Fruit-flinging perp busted in Sheepshead Bay(NYDN)
College student slashed in neck during fight on crowded (NYP)
NY appeals court nixes Queens interrogations(Fox 5)

Interactive Map: What NYC Neighborhoods Have The Most Public Drinking Complaints?: As longtime advocates of stoop...

Man Arrested in Attacks on Asians in East Harlem(NYT) * Man Arrested on Bus in Attacks Targeting Asians (WSJ)* Cops: We have mugger terrorizing Asians(NYDN)

Yankees Reportedly Trying To Void Remainder Of A-Rod’s Contract(WINS)
Getting to bottom of drug case (NYP) Now that’s junk in the trunk! Two Bronx neighbors were returning from the Dominican Republic when the feds caught the women by the seat of their pants — quite literally. Priscilla Pena and Michelle Blassingale had just arrived at JFK aboard a.

Fake lawyer get real trial(NYDN)

ketches released of suspects in activist's murder(WABC)

Jail for killing a reformed thug turned Orthodox Jew(NYDN)

Cop killer’s death threat: Lamont Pride and pal brutalized me, pusher says(NYP)
Ex-Janitor Convicted of Raping Girl in School Basement Repeatedly(NYT)


Few Details Emerge On Sudden Censorship In 9/11 Pre-Trial HearingFew Details Emerge On Sudden Censorship In 9/11 Pre-Trial Hearing(NY1)
The self-proclaimed September 11th mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and his four alleged co-conspirators waived their rights to be present Tuesday at the second day of their pre-trial hearings at the Guantanamo Bay naval base in Cuba, and few details have emerged so far on why outgoing video and audio feeds of the court proceedings were suddenly cut off at one point on Monday.
WTC Victims' Mothers Find It Difficult To View Gitmo Accommodations For Accused Terrorists (NY1)