Tuesday, May 14, 2013

As Narcissist Mayoral Candidates Pander Who Will Protect Us?

One of the Most Important Jobs of the Modern Mayor is to Protect New Yorkers Against Terrorist Not Saving Cats

This Campaign is About Them Not Us
NYC’s pathetic race(McManus, NYP) Who’ll speak up for city’s future? The Post’s Bob McManus accuses the New York City mayoral candidates of pandering to voters at the expense of addressing pressing issues facing the city.  Is this a mayoral election New York is experiencing? Or a race for sophomore class president? How else to explain John Catsimatidis last week, standing before a clutch of anti-vivisectionists and explaining that his family loves small animals so much that his wife once gave mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to a dying cat. The voter of New York do not want to know about the sex life of de Blasio wife either. The NYT says today Council Speaker Recounts Her Struggles With Bulimia and Alcoholism * Mayoral hopeful opens up about her pst : A.M. News Link

These Forums With Interest Groups Have Turned the Mayoral Candidates Into Shameless Panders
They troop to one useless “candidate forum” after another — four top-tier Democrats, two Republicans and a platoon of aspiring bit players — meticulously explaining how they will cater to whichever coven of special pleaders is sponsoring that particular exposition.
Oh, please — vote me Most Popular!
Some of this is retail politicking in the Twitter Age — candidates so deathly fearful of frothing up the social media that they’ll go anywhere, at any time, to kiss any ring deemed in need of kissing. And a big part of it isn’t trivial at all. Saturday’s group grovel by the major Democrats before the United Federation of Teachers provided a moment of real clarity: The Bloomberg-era public-school reforms will become history, and the union will get a budget-busting payday in its next contract if a Democrat negotiates it.
 Schools Chief Blasts Mayoral Candidates Over Remarks at Education Forum(NYT) Dennis M. Walcott, chancellor of the New York City system, said that Democrats who spoke at a recent forum were pandering to the teachers’ union. New York City Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott lashed out at the Democratic candidates for mayor yesterday, saying that he did not believe any had a compelling vision to lead city schools and criticizing their remarks at an education forum * NYC schools chancellor blasts mayoral candidates(WSJ) * NYC Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott lashed out at the Democratic candidates for mayor, saying that he did not believe any of them had a compelling vision to lead city schools and that they had been pandering to gain the support of the UFT.…The DN echoes that sentiment.

Which is the next mayor's mission protecting New Yorkers or empathy for victims?  
How can inexperience mayoral candidates assure us they can do both?
Equally worrisome were the supine positions taken by Democrats May 5, during a forum at NYU’s Islamic Center. The candidates perspired empathy for “victims” of the NYPD’s anti-terrorism surveillance policies — but displayed not a hint of awareness of the news stories from Boston detailing the FBI’s abject refusal to share relevant terror-related information with the cops there before the Marathon Day bombing.

No Russert Type Journalist Questions This Year of the Mayoral Candidates
Serious Journalist Questions to Expose the Candidates Lies and Hypocrisy of Changing Positions to Cater to Interest Groups Are Never Asked.  They Have Not Even Explained How They Will Pay for All the Extra Services for A City Economy is Shrinking the Middle Class and Maintaining A High Level of Unemployment for Years.

Cuomo Mania Speek

Cuomo in Wonderland
“Do you feel fear?” Mr. Cuomo retorted. “Are you afraid?”
The reporter, Zack Fink of NY1, said no. Mr. Cuomo said he was also not afraid.
“I think they’re afraid of you,” said the governor, smiling a little. “I think you strike fear into the hearts of men and women.” 
Cuomo conceded that the indictments and corruption news had been “emotionally draining for some people” in the Legislature. But not for everyone, and certainly – his mood notwithstanding – not for the governor himself.
“I think it’s basically irrelevant,” he said, “unless you allow it to become relevant.”
It Wasn’t the Day to Ask Cuomo About the Mood in Albany(NYT)

Gov’s ‘scandal mania’ alarm (NYP) ALBANY — Gov. Cuomo yesterday said he won’t let the tidal wave of corruption that’s washed through Albany knock out the rest of his agenda for the legislative session. “What I am trying mightily to do is not allow the scandal mania” to become “all...* The Independent Democratic Conference sponsored a hearing in Erie County in order to build support for a complete overhaul of the state’s campaign finance system, including imposing contribution limits and prohibiting corporate contributions, The Buffalo News writes: * Cuomo Downplays Suggestion That Scandals Will Affect His Agenda(NY1)
* The governor tried to dispel a New York Post report that claims several key staffers are jumping ship, right before he launches his re-election campaign.
* Cuomo Presses Plan to Privatize LIPA Operations(WSJ)
Either CEOs don't watch enough TV, or they aren't buying claims that "New York Works for Business."

Albany Rubber Room

A rubber room for pols(NYP Ed)
The rubber rooms for teachers were closed a while back. But in the last few weeks, a crime spree in Albany has converted the state Legislature into one giant rubber room — for pols. By latest count, four state lawmakers have been indicted but are still clinging to their seats. That’s just for starters. One quarter of Democrats in the Senate are being investigated by the feds. And serial sexual harasser Assemblyman Vito Lopez is being eyed by special prosecutor Dan Donovan. It was bad enough when teachers too dangerous to be allowed near kids were consigned to rubber rooms. But what do you do with a legislature filled with people who retain their power to write laws even as they are under indictment for having broken them?

Smith Not Running
Following his arrest for allegedly trying to bribe his way into the NYC mayor’s race, Sen. Malcolm Smith doesn’t seem terribly interested in running anymore.

The Times’ Michael Powell writes that despite some state politicians accusing law enforcement of targeting minority lawmakers in corruption schemes, New York’s political wrongdoing has a multicultural lineage:

Team Boyland

This Time The Feds Are Making Sure Boyland Goes Down

Arroyo Family License to Steel

Disgraced grandson of state Assemblywoman Carmen Arroyo, sprung from prison, promptly lands gig with new nonprofit(NYDN) EXCLUSIVE: Ricardo (Richard) Izquierdo Arroyo works in “case management” for Neighborhood Association for Inter-Cultural Affairs. Feds charge Arroyo kin with embezzlement - Mott Haven Herald * Political clan under the funding microscope - NY Daily News(2008)

BOE Licence to Fuck Up

NYCBOE says is not considering any of the alternatives the BOE sent up, delaying a week, june primary, lever machines, etc. #2013 * It gets better: "I assure you this is going to be a lesson learned election" -- NYCBOE #2013 * NYCBOE says #albany is not considering any of the alternatives the BOE sent up, delaying a week, june primary, lever machines, etc. #2013 When asked about chances of running successful runoff, NYCBOE says "we will do our best." #2013 Cost of runoff is 16 million -- not including cost of ballots, says NYCBOE #2013* NYCBOE says would have to design a new system (and would need new staff) if council allows non-citizen residents to vote #2013 * Politico’s Maggie Haberman, who penned a piece on former Rep. Anthony Weiner staffing up in advance of a potential mayoral bid, concluded on Twitter, “Barring some unforeseen thing, Weiner is running, for those (including myself) who still had questions about that notion.” She added that “he hasn’t had a ton of people he’s reached out to say yes I want to work for you.”

Board Of Elections Concerned About Potential Runoff In Mayor's Race(NY1)

Mayoral Campaign

Looks Like the NYT is Back to Promoting Quinn Again  
What does Throwing Up Have to Do With Being Mayor?  What is next bowel movements?
Council Speaker Recounts Her Struggles With Bulimia and Alcoholism(NYT)
 Christine C. Quinn opened up about her bulimia and the alcoholism that accompanied it, which she will discuss at a speech at Barnard College and in a memoir to be published next month. Coincidentally, Quinn also talks bulimia in the June Vogue, which carries an excerpt from her memoir & a plug from Anna * Quinn reveals past bulimia, alcoholism struggles(Fox 5) * Quinn insists her confession was not politically motivated.* Christine Quinn Is Out of Secrets After Revealing Bulimia and Alcohol Struggles(NYO)
* Dollars Pile Up for Campaigns in Race for Mayor(NYT)
* Quinn Reveals Past Struggles With Bulimia, Alcoholism(NY1)

  • [image]Quinn Faces Resistance(WSJ) City Council Speaker Christine Quinn would make history if elected as New York's first openly gay mayor, but some of her most vocal critics are themselves gay and transgender voters. A small faction of LGBT activists and celebrities are not supporting Quinn for New York City mayor, in part because of her tenure representing Chelsea and Greenwich Village where some of her decisions alienated her constituents

    Politico’s Maggie Haberman, who penned a piece on former Rep. Anthony Weiner staffing up in advance of a potential mayoral bid, concluded on Twitter, “Barring some unforeseen thing, Weiner is running, for those (including myself) who still had questions about that notion.” She added that “he hasn’t had a ton of people he’s reached out to say yes I want to work for you.” 
    * Clock Is Ticking On Anthony Weiner 2.0(NYDN)

de Blasio Gay Money
At a Racy Fund-Raiser for de Blasio, the Target Is Quinn(NYT)
A fund-raiser for Bill de Blasio highlighted a splintering of the gay community in the mayor’s race, laying bare frustrations with Christine C. Quinn from parts of a voting bloc she has long symbolized.* NYC Public Advocate Bill de Blasio hit a milestone in his bid for mayor when his campaign reported that he had raised all the money he is allowed to spend in the coming Democratic primary.

New York City Comptroller John Liu, a Democratic mayoral candidate, has been actively courting the city’s Muslim community, siding with Muslim New Yorkers on important matters in their community and attending numerous Muslim-related events, the New York Daily News writes: 

Another Democratic mayoral hopeful, Bill Thompson, raised more than $600,000 over the last two months – nearly double what it raised in the previous 60-day period.

Joe Lhota. (Photo: Getty)Joe Lhota, Christine Quinn Continue to Rake in Cash(NYO)

Tisch vs Tisch
New York State Board of Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch revealed that her husband, Loews Corporation CEO James Tisch, is supporting Republican Joe Lhota for New York City mayor, despite her backing Democrat Bill Thompson, the Post reports:

Campaign 2013

Brooklyn Democratic leaders are uneasy at the possibility that the Brooklyn borough president frontrunner, state Sen. Eric Adams, may become entangled in a federal dragnet that has already ensnared former state Sen. Shirley Huntley, who secretly recorded Adams, and they are making calls urging more candidates to step into the race, according to sources. Power brokers are urging Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce President Carlo Scissura, Markowitz’s former chief of staff, to challenge Adams, but Scissura said he’s staying put for now. “I love being president of the Brooklyn Chamber and I’ve endorsed Eric Adams,” he said. “As long as he’s in the race, I support him 100 percent.” Political observers also have suggested that Councilwoman Letitia James and Councilman Brad Lander could seek the seat, though James has denied interest in the post and Lander has said he remains focused on leading the Council’s Progressive Caucus. Adams has maintained that he has not been contacted about any investigation, saying in a statement, “I believe deeply in transparency and the pursuit of justice – and that is why I committed 20 years of my life to law enforcement.”(City and State)*  State Senator Dan Squadron had a nice fund-raising period, raising over a half million dollars in his bid to become the city’s next public advocate. According to a statement, “His campaign has spent only $289,200 to date, meaning that, as of this filing, he has $2.3 million to spend in the Democratic Primary, with four months of fundraising left to go.”
The New Robber Barons

When Campaign Aides Are Lobbyists, Questions Mount(Barkan, City Limits) Some of the top firms advising candidates for state and local office also lobby those offices for clients like corporations and unions. Some believe the potential conflict demands reform.

A Letter to Garcia: (Michael) Garcia U.S. Attorney | Room Eight(2008)

Lobbyists Hank Sheinkopf (True News)
Lobbying blitz: Businesses spent $62 million - a record - to influence NYC government last year
As pols play musical chairs, consultants become the piper (CrainsNY) Term limits, public financing spark demand and dollars for campaign pros. 
Lobbyists Stanley Schlein (Bronx)
Gambling Convetion Center and lobbyists 
Forest City Ratner's 2011 city/state lobbying: 50% jump, with big contract to Kasirer; in Congress, D'Amato's firm lobbied for EB-5, and even got paid for not lobbying 
Two of the lobbyists accused in the IG report of fixing the Democratic senate - Carl Andrews and Hank Sheinkopf - flouted the probe, with Andrews unsuccessfully suing to block subpoenas and appealing right up to the report’s release, and Sheinkopf taking the fifth amendment. Incredibly, their refusal to cooperate with a state probe of the award of one state contract has no effect on their ability to seek another. Andrews hosted a victory dinner in his Albany house right after AEG won the bid, and Smith and Sampson and five other legislators, including Manhattan county leader Keith Wright, joined company brass at an event Andrews invoiced for $1,562. The night before Governor Paterson announced the award, Andrews and AEG executives lit a victory cigar at the Havana Club with Al Sharpton, whose NAN had just collected $100,000 in AEG contributions, ostensibly tied to their belief that the Rev was whispering to Paterson on their behalf. A former state senator himself, Andrews held a top executive title in the Spitzer and Paterson administrations until a scandal about his apparent efforts to influence a decision of the State Liquor Authority forced him from office (the IG eventually concluded that Andrews’ top aide had to be fired).
Lobbyist Richard J. Lipsky Pleads Guilty to Bribery - NYTimes.com

NYFD Race Hiring

Appeals Court Says Judge Went Too Far in Fire Dept. Hiring Case(NYT)

The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit did, however, leave in place many of the orders by Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis, including a finding that previous tests used to screen applicants had been biased against minorities.

Gambling Risky Bet

The Daily News’ Bill Hammond argues that Cuomo’s desire for the state to establish casino gambling is a risky proposal considering the poor financial condition of casinos in New Jersey and Connecticut


New York City moves forward with East Midtown rezoning (WABC)

Body Bags

New York City is spending $95,000 this year to buy about 5,500 heavy duty body bags.

New Security Concerns as More Subways Get Wi-FiNBC)

. & The Record investigate how prepared for Sandy — using incorrect flood maps.

Quinn's Gift to Newstands

$preadin’ the news: Quinn bill a bonanza for kiosk vendors (NYP) Striving to show that she’s got the back of the city’s smallest businesses, mayoral candidate Christine Quinn yesterday rolled out a bill that would double the maximum price of goods sold at newsstands to $10.The measure is Quinn’s way of trying to show up one of her Democratic rivals, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, who has tried to claim the mantle of the small-business-friendly candidate. * Council Bill Would Raise Newsstand Merchandise Limits(NY1) * $10 Newsstand Umbrella? It’s No Longer Unthinkable(NYT) A plan was announced on Monday to double the $5 cap on the price of much of the merchandise available at New York City’s newsstands.* Newsstands Might Be Allowed to Sell More Useful Stuff Soon(NY Mag)

Flushing Meadow

CB7 bends over backward to approve Flushing Meadows shopping mall(Queens Crap)

Well, well, well. We suspected it was too good to be true, and it was. CB7's hastily called Buildings Committee voted 10-6 in favor of the Willets Point West project last night. You have to wonder why no one on the board thought it was wrong to take a re-vote when the original vote was cast after giving the developers and the City more than ample opportunity to make convincing arguments. Then, after hours of public testimony, the full board voted 22-18 in favor of it. The vote may have gone the other way if some board members hadn't conveniently left the meeting before the vote was held. A shameful sham.


NYC set to sell tax liens on Sandy-damaged homes(NYDN)


As more charter schools open in New York City, the odds of getting into the privately managed public schools are rising while the demand for seats continues also to rise.
Bike Share

Bike-blunder coverup: suit (NYP)  A 20-story building in the heart of Greenwich Village’s historic district claims it’s the “poster child” for what is wrong with the city’s bungled Bike Share rollout, according to a new lawsuit.* DC Bike Share Program Working Well After Three Years(NY1)
Bike Sharing? Sure. The Racks? No Way.(NYT)
New bicycle share stands across New York are drawing mixed reactions, with some formerly supportive residents changing their minds once they saw the kiosks.

Katz's Delicatessen

In 125 Years, Much Has Changed, but the Pastrami Is the Same(NYT)

Mike Pro Soccer Stadium

Mike’s thing of booty: Defends Queens soccer stadium (NYP) Parkland is “not the only thing people need,” Mayor Bloomberg said yesterday as he defended plans to build a soccer stadium in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. “It’s not irreplaceable,” the mayor said of the 13 acres in Flushing Meadows that soccer...  

Bridge and Canal Fix Ups

Antique Bridge Closed to Traffic While It’s Open for Repairs(NYT)
The 124-year-old Carroll Street Bridge in Brooklyn, a 107-foot-long link between Park Slope and Carroll Gardens, sustained damage from flooding in Hurricane Sandy.* NYC's wooden bridge being repaired(WSJ)

Traffic Eased on Brooklyn Bridge Access Ramps(NYT)
The city announced an unclogging of the famed (and maligned) traffic bottlenecks on the crossing’s access ramps, where a series of choke points had long stalled vehicles on both sides of the bridge.

Upgrades on Schedule for Gowanus Canal Pumping Station Despite Hurricane(NYT)
Work on the facility that directs sewage was interrupted by Hurricane Sandy, and plans were modified to reflect lessons learned from the storm, but the project is still expected to be completed this year, officials announced. * Mayor: Brooklyn Waterway Cleanup Effort Coming Along(NY1)


Sources tell me total headcount of recent Daily News layouts was 27.


WH press secretary Jay Carney got it "big time" as reporters questioned him on scandals:
A Bumbling Response on Talking Points(NYT Ed)
The initial talking points to describe the attack in Benghazi, Libya, though inept, is not the real issue. But Republicans are making it into one.
The I.R.S. Audits Are Condemned (NYT Ed)
The I.R.S. should have scrutinized every group seeking a tax exemption for “social welfare” activity — Democrat or Republican, conservative or liberal.
Carl Bernstein rips White House over AP subpoena:(Politico)
Cincinnati IRS Office Also Released Confidential Documents to Reporters(NY Mag)
The Problems Pile Up for Obama - Alexis Simendinger, RealClearPolitics
In IRS Scandal, Echoes of Watergate - George Will, Washington Post
Our Ceaseless Circus - Frank Bruni, New York Times
Lies About Libya - Thomas Sowell, Investor's Business Daily
Obama More Outraged at GOP Than IRS - George Condon, National Journal
Gosnell Jury Saw Truth of Abortion - Christine Flowers, Philly Daily News
Why Women Went to Kermit Gosnell - Michelle Goldberg, The Daily Beast
Time to Ask Obama About Gosnell - Mollie Hemingway, USA Today
Ted Cruz for President? Not So Fast - Stuart Rothenberg, Roll Call
My Five Biggest ObamaCare Anxieties - Jonathan Cohn, The New Republic

AP leak 'put the American people at risk': AG Holder(NYP)Instead of "Forward," It's Backward - to 1972 - Joe Battenfeld, Boston Herald
Obama's Government Microtargets Americans - Ben Smith, BuzzFeed
Levin: Beltway GOP Bought Into Tea Party Slander - Charles Johnson, DC
The Real Scandal Is GOP Obstruction - Jonathan Bernstein, Washington Post
Obama's One-Sided "Reset" With Russia - Mark Salter, RealClearPolitics
Why I Had a Double Mastectomy - Angelina Jolie, New York Times
How Fishing Helps Veterans Heal -- and Land Jobs - Ed Nicholson, RCP
IRS's Turn to Answer Questions - Washington Post
Time to Drain the IRS Swamp - Boston Herald
A Bumbling Response on Benghazi Talking Points - New York Times
Gosnell & the Liberal Gospel - New York Post
Stewart Destroys Obama Over IRS Scandal, Lack Of ‘Managerial Competence’: You’ve Vindicated Conspiracy Theorists

Federal authorities have launched a criminal investigation into allegations that IRS officials targeted conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status for extra scrutiny.
White House spokesman Jay Carney had a tough day, finding himself having to defend the president against being compared to Richard Nixon.

Law and Order

Police Inspector Rules Out Racial Profiling(NYT)
Christopher McCormack, a Bronx commander whose remarks about young black males were secretly recorded, testified that he would only relay victims’ descriptions to his officers. * Secretly Recorded NYPD Deputy Inspector Testifies At Stop-And-Frisk Trial(NY1)

‘Wrong-man’ cop spurs DA overload  (NYP) A team of Brooklyn prosecutors will examine the work of a decorated retired NYPD detective whose case against an alleged rabbi-killer unraveled in March, sources said yesterday.*

Heartless nanny pleads guilty to repeatedly beating two babies(NYP)
 Rival Candidate Criticizes Brooklyn D.A. Television Program (WSJ) Abe George trying to unseat long-serving Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes says he'll file papers Tuesday attempting to stop CBS from airing a show about the prosecutor's office on the grounds that the program violates state campaign law.

Caroline Kennedy picked as juror for Manhattan drug case(NYT)
Prosecutors didn’t have many questions for Caroline Kennedy before they selected her as Juror No. 7 for a Manhattan crack sale trial,

She’s got Stock‘ho’ Syndrome: Gal defends her ‘pimps’ (NYP) A hooker in high-heeled sandals turned a new trick in a Manhattan courtroom yesterday. Blond-maned Desiree Ellis popped in to help defend a team of father-son pimps against charges that they brutally forced her and four other young women into their..

Professor's perv-cam bust (NYP) An accomplished NYU art-history professor — who has lectured at the Met and Sotheby’s — is a Peeping Tom who uses his iPhone to spy on young women in West Village boutique changing rooms, cops said.

NYPD hunt for robbers(NYDN)

2 Waiters Arrested in Killing of Malcolm X’s Grandson(NYT)