Zennie62 on YouTube

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Bloomberg seeks to end progressive reforms by Louis Flores

Mayor Bloomberg and Deputy Mayor Goldsmith want to unwind Tammany Hall reforms.
Bloomberg, Tammany Hall, Progressive Politics, Political Reform, Integrity in Government, Public
Service, Thomas Nast, Suzannah B. Troy, muckrakers
At a July 20, 2010 breakfast meeting, Stephen Goldsmith, the new Deputy Mayor of New York City,
was compared to Jane Jacobs for the way he applied ''urban renewal'' to Indianapolis. Now that
he is in New York City, Mr. Goldsmith has joined forces with Mayor Michael Bloomberg to
transform New York City.

In the presence of political reporters Erik Engquist and Michael Scotto, the new deputy
mayor described his political beliefs, which serve to underpin his worldview and approach to

Mr. Goldsmith said that a progressive form of government developed post-Tammany Hall, and Mr.
Goldsmith credited progressive reforms with professionalizing the way that cities work. He said that
we don't hire ''buddies'' anymore. Neither do we award government contracts in ways that would be
questioned, he said.

But now, Mr. Goldsmith said, all the rules that made government free of corruption have worked to make  government more complex. He cited as an example that all these rules create a lack of authority in the city, where government leaders need permission from another level of bureaucrats before efficiency
could be brought to the way the city government could be run. He seemed to say that the believed that
the rule-based system needed to be changed, so that city employees could be ''liberated,'' and that
this would result in civil workers being able to be creative while also being held accountable.
The way that he sees things, Mr. Goldsmith said, public service used to attract people, who were
interested in helping the public. Instead, he said, public service is only about enforcing the

To Mr. Goldsmith, rules may be problematic to the kinds of changes he envisions bringing to New York
City government, but rules have a reason for being : they are needed, because people are apt to have
lapses in integrity. Anytime that politicians have an opportunity to privitise government services,
there is a temptation to award government contracts to their well-connected friends or political

The model of how he privatised government services while he was mayor of Indianapolis would be
difficult to do here, in New York City, because he believes that the progressive rules in New York
City give no discretion to the city's workers.

According to Wikipedia, '' Keeping corruption out of politics was a main goal of the progressive
, with many Progressives trying to expose and undercut political machines and bosses. ''
To be fair to Mr. Goldsmith, his opinions about reforming the rules that govern city employees extend
to ''unlocking'' the potential of existing city workforce. He said he believes that progressive era
rules were set because one could not trust the discretion (or judgment) of government employees. But
once you begin to give higher level government employees discretion, one very quickly creates a
situation, where political leaders begin to misuse that discretion. Political bosses are often
associated with dishonesty, self-dealing, conflicts of interest, profiteering from government, and
other forms of corruption.

Take, for example, the way that Mayor Bloomberg came to win a third term as mayor.
Before the end of his second, and what should have been his last, term, Mayor Bloomberg advocated for
an extension of term limits, which would have resulted in the possibility that could have campaigned
for a third term as mayor. With help from the City Council and a secret deal with Ronald Lauder, Mayor Bloomberg won the change in term limits by denying voters a referendum on the matter. What they mayor did was rely on the discretion of the City Council to change the law governing term limits. Last year, Mayor Bloomberg won a third term after having reported that he had spent approximately $109 million only to win by an unexpectedly slim margin of less than 5 per cent.

To get the kind of governance structure that the mayor wants, the CityPragmatist blog has reported
that there is a current movement by the 2010 Charter Revision Commission to increase the mayor's discretion over city agency reports. The increase of the mayor's discretion would come at the cost of City Council's ability to review and “extend or enhance” any city agency report.

Research and history published on Wikipedia also indicated that the reforms of the progressive era
brought more transparency to government. ''Progressives moved to enable the citizenry to rule more
directly and circumvent political bosses; California, Wisconsin, and Oregon took the lead. California
governor Hiram Johnson established the initiative, referendum, and recall,
viewing them as good influences for citizen participation ....''

What were the motives of City Council members,
who supported Mayor Bloomberg's extension of
term limits ?

Artist and social media commentator Suzannah B. Troy was also present to witness Mr.
Goldsmith's speech at his July 20, 2010 breakfast meeting. She has described the vote by City Council
to allow an extension of term limits a conflict of interest, because the same extension of terms
limits allowed many council members to run for, and win, a term, including Council Speaker
Christine Quinn.

Going back to the history about past political corruption in New York City, the the term ''Tammany Hall'' is "used to refer to a corrupt system of buying or
controlling votes."
And respected political reporter Gabe Pressman has described how the influence of money can corrupt politics.
"Abraham Lincoln spoke at Gettysburg of his ideal of a government of the people, by the
people and for the people. He didn’t mean government of the fat cats and by the fat cats. With all due
respect to the feline family -- and I happen to love cats -- Lincoln was an apostle of democracy in a
purer sense. ¶ The machinations of millionaires and billionaires are foreign to what he believed. The
lack of strict laws governing campaign expenditures continues to be a disgrace to our

Giuseppi Logan Brecht Forum by Suzannah B. Troy

http://brechtforum.org/  Giuseppi Logan will be playing tonight at Brecht Forum.  For those who don't know I discovered him playing on a freezing cold winter day 2 years ago to an empty park. I posted a moving rendition of Begin the Beguine and before I knew it jazz fans and critics were contacting me from all over the world celebrating he was in fact alive.  He was looking for a home, a place to compose music and play music.

I ran home and posted the amazing video footage and immediately found a British film maker's video footage of Giuseppi with a little boy Jaee holding hands in Tompkins -- same park almost 45 years before me!  

Peter Gershon, publisher of Signal to Noise, wrote a stirring piece about Giuseppi Logan and acknowledged my work along with the British film maker; a powerful piece worth checking out.

Since my first YouTube and now there are over 20 tube in my YouTube documentary he has now cut a new CD, the first since his 2 well received ones by ESP in the 1960's.   An angel posing as a human being who works for Salvation Army found him a small space in one the Salvation Army's houses that helps people struggling like Giuseppi which is beyond awesome and his little sliver of a living place filled with instruments donated to him by the Jazz Foundation and given to him by kind people fill his little room. 

He is playing at the Stone  August 15.   I am hoping his son will be back to continue work on his documentary and that down the road a major motion picture will be made to tell Giuseppi Logan's story as well as honoring the tragic loss of GL's grandson, same name as his son Jaee's memory.  Jaee was murdered by a cowardly act of gun violence, several shots to the back of his head at a barbecue  He was an honor student and a football star and like his grandfather, and Dad Jaee he had the musical gift.\

Note: The film would honor jazz but also raise awareness and hopefully raise money for a foundation to help stop gun violence.  Who knows maybe there will be a series of films....

The film like my YouTube documentary would underscore even in the latest chapters of your life you can find some kind of redemption.

You can see my first YouTube discovering Giuseppi Logan http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UTssjT9rAmQ and I did not know who he was.  As an artist I had a powerful feeling for him -- playing to empty seats....admired his passion and drive at such an old age to get out and play in freezing cold weather.

A friend of his youngest child Jaee and only child from Guiseppi's 2nd marriage told Jaee there is this woman on YouTube filming your Dad!  Jaee did not know his father was still alive and after losing his son he wanted to be reunited with his Dad.

I helped make that happened and captured them reunited for the first time in over 40 years so the little boy in the YouTube I found from so long ago in Tompkins is reunited once again with his Dad thanks to a YouTube miracle that I am honored to be part of!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Chippy D - Laurence Fishburne's girl a porn star, Kim Kardashian thanked

Montana Fishburne, the daughter of famed actor, Laurence Fishburne, is certainly making her dad an unhappy camper as she's now called "Chippy D" and is a porn star.

According to MissJia.com via TMZ.com, Montana Fishburne thanks her hotness Kim Kardashian for the idea. She says it was Kim Kardashian's sex tape that gave her inspiration.

Laurence Fishburne is the famous TV and movie actor best known for playing Mobius in the Matrix film series. But what was going on at home?

19-year-old Montana Fishburne told the site CarltonJordan.com that she had a lot of at-home experience in playing a porn actress.


No word on what Laurence Fishburne thinks about all of this, yet. And according to her Twitter account, Kim Kardashian's too busy grinding with Dallas Cowboys Wide Receiver Miles Austin to even care:

time to shine ;-) RT @MilesAustiniii -@kimkardashian rise and grind. ;)
about 24 hours ago via web

Stay tuned.

Charles Rangel sign of the times by Suzannah B. Troy

And below of course you can read what I have to say.

"Serial offender", denial is his crack cocaine, he thinks he is above the law and untouchable.  How many other politicos does that describe?  Too many!!! Mike Bloomberg wired money out of his personal account instead of his campaign.  If any poor schlub running for office did that they would be in trouble; not "Teflon Mike".  Accidental gov. Paterson in my opinion absolutely called a victim of spousal abuse by his staff member who I am sure had a past of this kind of behavior and should go to jail for attempting how ever gently to silence a victim.  It is not just these offenders but the people, groups and judges that let them walk away over and over.  Special note: I attended the Crain's Breakfast for the inarticulate bumbling deputy mayor Goldsmith and he said a figure of the NYC budget deficit next year which was STAGGERING.  Next years budget crisis could be described as a terror attack.  

Time for the corrupt city council members that voted to extend term limits to vote themselves another raise but they need to start unvoting themselves raises, stop wasting- stealing tax payer money and taking the subway instead of using car services. We need king Mike to fire his campaign staff and reimburse the city for their salaries because he had no right to hire them. But these ideas aren't in Goldsmith's agenda to save the city some money. It would help if Albany closed their 9.2 billion dollar budget crisis which was supposed to be closed last April.

Here is an article from The New York Post covering the anger, sadness and Betrayal felt by people in Harlem.   I feel that way about Mike Bloomberg.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Happy NYC! Go NYC by Marc Zaleela

Go NYC by Marc Zaleela

New York is arguably the best city in the world.  Just ask any native New Yorker, and they will agree.  Of course we have our problems.  What city doesn't?  Is there such a thing as urban perfection?  I doubt it.

And, like most native New Yorkers, I have some favorite places.  My list is quite lengthy, so I will limit myself to a few summer time highlights.  One of the greatest urban restoration projects is the South Street Seaport.  Once a bustling wholesale fish market, it had fallen into blight and disrepair in the 60's and 70's.  It was also allegedly a hotbed of organized crime activity.  In the early 1980's it was renovated and transformed into what we see today.  While it may be a bit "touristy" for some natives, it is a piece of old New York history that has been well preserved.

From pier 17, the views of Brooklyn and the world famous Brooklyn Bridge are spectacular.  Ask a foreign visitor what they know about New York and they'll tell you "the Statue of Liberty and The Brooklyn Bridge".  Completed in 1883, it is an architectural masterpiece.  The Brooklyn Bridge is without peer, anywhere in the world.  Take the time to walk across from Brooklyn to Manhattan and you'll get the full experience.

And lastly, what would New York be without one of my personal favorites, Yankee Stadium?  I know the purists will decry tearing down The House That Ruth Built in favor of the one that George built, but you have to see it to believe it.  Being a fan for my whole life, I had mixed emotions about the transformation and I still do miss the old ballpark.  But, I must admit that the new Yankee Stadium (thankfully they did not sell the naming rights), has done much to retain a lot of the old stadium feeling while providing an upgraded fan experience.  In my opinion, the only downside is that a family of four will be required to pay a king's ransom for an outing to the ballpark.  I would recommend buying your tickets on Stub Hub as I have gotten good seats for as little as 15 bucks!  You can be part of NYC history as the Yanks pursue their 28th World Series Championship!  GO NYC!

Dear Blog Readers:  Marc contacted me to discuss my comments on The New York Post.  He is so optimistic I decided to post his positivity on my blogs when I get the chance to.  Been hectic...but I have to add these comments.... See the Seaport photo- notice how Bloomberg has found ways to put advertisements every where except the Statute of Liberty?  See the Coors Lights structure?   Yet in contrast he wants vendors swept off the streets.

Re: The Yanks -- I can't belieeeeeve Mike Bloomberg made Babe Ruth's ghost homeless!!!!
Thanks for the cheer Marc!  We need it because next year we are going to have an economic crisis like a huge terror attack so thanks for any all good cheer!


p.s.  Dear Blog Readers:  Been extra hectic.   As soon as I get time you are getting the NYC round-up with my thoughts on Paterson getting off when he should be going to jail, Rangel and off course Mike Bloomberg....I have fun NYC events coming including cool museum visits as well.  Stay tune...

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Suzannah B. Troy takes Aerial Yoga

You can take Aerial Yoga at locations around NYC or do what I did and arrange a private class.

I took a group class with Michelle and I was the oldest person there and I exceeded my expectations.  Taking a private with Michelle was a different experience.  She had body genius and superb insights I greatly appreciated.  I was able to really relax and be present.  I learned so much.  I have the highest praise and I look forward to seeing her perform as well.

Michelle also does teacher trainings and her students are older than me including a 70 year old man.  As I get older I am fascinated learning about people who are older still learning and superb they are getting their teacher training.  They are already yoga teaching taking their teaching to new heights.

My VIP's special to me  knows I love defying gravity!!!!!!!!!!!!  My favorite pose...head stand in the air!!!!!!!!


Above is the link to a YouTube of Michelle teaching a class and she is truly amazing teacher.  I took a class like this and I did so much more than I ever imagined.

The YouTube is not Michelle but the video also shows you some more Aerial Yoga.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Mike Bloomberg Steve Rattner Caymans by Suzannah B. Troy

Yikes:  Read this article from The New York Observer "Bloomberg's Offshore Millions

Dean Zerbe, a former staffer at the Senate Finance Committee--  asks what does this say to the average New Yorker?

 Harde har har, hilarious.......

I copied the text below  from the article -- when Dean Zerbe says they should look very hard -- is that like the NYPD looking hard in the other direction when it comes to not ticketing cars illegally parked for "the rich' aka 'above the law" parked  in front of The Mercer Hotel where it says no parking - loading and unloading?  Does anyone know when the SEC is going to make a ruling on whether Steve Rattner is going to be banned for 3 years?  Has anyone learned the name of Steve's new firm managing Mike's billions for charity that some say is to buy good will in case he runs for President although all say he has zero chance of winning.   

For those that do not know Steve Rattner is a money manger for Mike Bloomberg and it was not considered a conflict of interest that his company Quadrangle get involved in pensions here in NY but oops it blew up in Steve Rattner's face with pay to play scandals but no splish splash on to Teflon Mike Bloomberg.  Rattner did have to step down from his job at The White House rescuing the auto industry and Rattner thinks you will buy his book and read how he rescued the auto industry before he had to step down to spend more time with his family here in NYC!  Hardee har har....is Mike Bloomberg family?

Below from the article:

“Is (using the loophole) allowable under the law? Yes,” said tax expert Dean Zerbe, a former staffer at the Senate Finance Committee. “Is it something that is a best practice, particularly by an elected official? I think they should look very hard when they are engaging in this kind of activity. What does it say to the average New Yorker?”

The foundation’s tax returns indicate that Mr. Rattner’s team migrated much of its money to large hedge funds with ostensible island charters, including several in the Caymans, two of which list an address at P.O. Box 309 of the Ugland House, a building that “houses” an estimated 12,000 to 18,000 foreign businesses.

Found this article here....


Stephen Goldsmith unexpurgated by City Pragmatist

Crain's New York hosted this breakfast but was very careful not to show YouTubes like the one posted above and others I include in my playlist that are not by me but a fellow activist.

The topics: closing fire houses, anti-gay marriage? sure sounds like after a very long non-answer that he is, pro-stop and frisk although again it was a non-answer.

Please go to the City Pragmatist (click on link above)  and read what he has to say..... Read below what I have to say....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rdLQNanbNhU  Please watch my YouTube.  I walk up to Goldsmith before the function and ask him several questions including why hirer a republican this late in the game unless it is yet another indicator Bloomberg still has his eye on The White House?  When I ask Goldsmith about "infrastructure" as in NYC's is shot to hell and my concerns for the people of NYC he says "thank you" which I translate as "F-you, you are dismissed".  I made a playlist of YouTubes, one by me and several by my fellow activist and he uses subtitles on all his YouTubes.  He is a hard core liberal but being tri-linguil at least he provides subtitles translating republican.  All jokes aside Stephen Goldsmith is a disaster who can handle questions from 2 white male reporters and says he is an "operations guys" and he does not want to answer social political questions.  Scary I know.  He appears not to understand why the FDNY has 2 fire trucks in a firehouse.  You see Deputy Goldsmith, one fire truck is an engine and one is ladder and you need both in case of a fire!!!!!!  He will not last as long as Dollar Bill Dan Doctoroff.  Go to my blog and under my search engine type Goldsmith and read my insights.  I mention confronting Doctoroff about infrastructure concerns as well and that was before the steam pipe explosion that looked like a terror attack.  Doctoroff did not brush me off with "thank yous".  He had someone from DEP contact me and assure me all was ok.  Than the Grand Central horrific steam pipe tragedy happened and shortly there after Doctoroff who once referred to himself as the Deputy of infrastructure left to return to king Mike's private empire.  Goldsmith is shockingly inarticulate and a bumbler with words.  Hard to believe he would be much better with "operations".

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Giuseppi Logan Over a Rainbow by Suzannah B. Troy

It was a brutally hot morning here in NYC including really bad air quality but of course Giuseppi Logan was out early playing his sax to practice, to play because playing music is his life line, without music he is dead and because he needs to earn money.  I of course gave him some. 

I happen to send YouTube an email just now about some things that exceed dollars and cents and reuniting Giuseppi Logan with his son after over 40 years thanks to my YouTubes can only be described as a YouTube miracle.

Jaee  Logan lost his son to random gun violence.  His son was an honor student like his Dad.   Jaee flew to NYC to be reunited with his Dad and now he is back in California working hard on his career with the goal to get back here and continue work on his documentary. 

When Jaee and I first spoke I told him I saw a documentary but also a Hollywood film like The Soloist but better.

Here is Giuseppi Logan playing music because not to play is to be dead.  He had to live too long without his instruments.   Giuseppi still struggles big time but he has found some kind of redemption very late in the 9th inning so to speak including with his new album his first since his two he made with ESP in the 1960's.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Deputy mayor Goldsmith FDNY four letter word by Louis Flores

Stephen Goldsmith (R) wants to close more firehouses and layoff more firefighters. At a July 20, 2010 breakfast meeting, the new Deputy Mayor of New York City had to answer for his opinions about more FDNY cost-cutting.

Mr. Goldsmith said he believed that the city had to renegotiate collective bargaining agreements and challenge court orders that regulate the public safety in order to cut costs. 

Mr. Goldsmith was appointed on April 30, 2010, to become deputy mayor by Mayor Michael Bloomberg.  Under three consecutive terms of the Bloomberg administration, the city has closed firehouses all over the city. But as many as have already been shut down, it still isn't enough for the mayor or his new deputy mayor. They want to see more firemen leave the service, and they want to find ways to cut retirement benefits to our city's heroes.

Henry Hill Goodfellas cement shoes Theatre 80 by Suzannah B. Troy

Check The New York Daily News tomorrow or early this week for an article about Henry Hill making a guest appearance at Theatre 80. Clayton Patterson showed up and The NYDaily News needed a photographer so hopefully Clayton's photo will run with the article  which should be a lot of fun!


Above see Henry Hill getting a pair of cement shoes! 

Actually Lorcan Otway the proprietor of Theatre 80 came up with the idea to get Henry Hill's foot prints and his signature in cement.  I am sure Hill has many other fans that would like the idea but are not Quakers like Otway!

I have to say that Henry really was very nice but I had to reprimand him for using too much white in his paintings.  He stated he is not an artist.  I said I know.   He paintings go for 50 dollars and they sell.

He has fans and Scorese's film Goodfellas is a masterpiece.  Of course the real live harsh realities of his story is beyond most people's scope and disturbing yet perfect for the museum of the American Gangster at 80 St. Marks Place here in NYC.

There was a big enthusiastic turn out to meet Henry Hill, get autographs and watch Goodfellas at Theatre 80 tonight!

The Museum of The American Gangster has moved upstairs from Theatre 80 but still connected literally and with amazing new items; a  must to visit while in NYC or pretending you are a tourist!

I gather this Cadillac made an appearance in Goodfellas!

St. Vincent's won't become luxury condos by Louis Flores

Residents of the West Village, Chelsea, and other neighborhood in the Lower West Side of Manhattan, showed up at a meeting of Community Board 2 last Thursday night.  It was a historic evening in Village history : CB2 passed a resolution to lock the land use and zoning of St. Vincent's Hospital.

Numerous residents signed up to make public statements to the Board Members of CB2.  Many residents had urged CB2 to put a lock on the zoning on the site of the former St. Vincent's Hospital.  Locking the zoning, or the ''land use',' of the site would prevent the site from being used for other purposes, such as luxury condominiums.  Unless a Board Member asked the speaker a question, each speaker was limited to two minutes of speaking time.

Eileen Dunn, RN, who formerly worked at St. Vincent's, asked CB2 and its chair, Jo Hamilton, to locate critical data issued by the Berger Commission.  The Berger Commission was a statewide panel, whose members were charged with recommending the ''rightsizing'' of hospitals and nursing homes in New York state.

Nurse Dunn said at the meeting that CB2 Board Member Brad Hoylman had distributed information about the Berger Commission, which Nurse Dunn said was incorrect.  Meanwhile, critical Berger Commission data that was applicable to St. Vincent's main hospital site in the West Village can no longer be found on the Internet.

When it came time for Susan Howard to speak, she questioned why CB2 would advocate for a ''needs assessment.''  Ms. Howard said it would be a waste of taxpayer money to conduct an expensive and lengthy study to determine whether a hospital was needed in the Lower West Side. There is no hospital now ; therefore, it is true that a hospital is needed.

Another concerned citizen, Jim Fouratt, took a break outside during the meeting.  He said that Beth Israel Hospital is too far away from his apartment if, God forbid, he ever had a heart attack.  Mr. Fouratt compared an urgent care center with the pharmacy department at Duane Reade.  Both are places you can go, if all you need is a band-aid, but you won't find treatment for broken limbs or strokes at either.

He added that New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn has let her community down.

Following the sudden and shocking closure of St. Vincent's Hospital, many politicians have proposed replacing St. Vincent's Hospital with an urgent care center.  If you have a serious condition, like a stroke, heart attack, severe bleeding, head injury, or other major trauma, don't take a chance.  An Emergency Room that is attached to a full-service hospital is where you should go.  Otherwise, the pharmacy counter at your nearest Duane Reade might better meet your needs if you suffer from minor burns or injuries, sprains and strains, or coughs, colds, and sore throats. 

NY Post dishonest cover Deputy Goldsmith by Suzannah B. Troy

Deputy Goldsmith is an inarticulate guy who thinks he can reform Albany and he would have more luck getting the Mafia to become vegetarians! He was introduced as a Jane Jacobs just like Mike Bloomberg's mini-me Christine Quinn was at the Jane Jacobs Street signing even though Quinn has gotten kickbacks from developers as in campaign donations for smoothing their way crushing our communities. I don't like Rudy but Goldsmith doesn't have an ounce of his "rudi-ness". When asked about gay marriage he went on and on for way too long than saying he did not want to answer questions that were political social aka he is anti-gay marriage AND HE WANTS TO CLOSE FIREHOUSES. He did not seem to understand the difference between a engine and a ladder and why we need them both in a firehouse. YouTube search engine type my name and his name to see two YouTube - mine and an activist showing him his embarrassing inarticulateness and cowardly non-speak. Bloomberg is nuts to bring in a republican especially now and I believe just like hiring his campaign staff burdening tax payers to the tune of 2 million and going national w/his donations = eye on Presidency. Watch the YouTube and see someone awkward, a disaster for the people and NYC which he is clueless about as well as how the press is not reporting the real news on this guy.

Read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/editorials/the_thinking_new_york_needs_LoaJ4owZyO8ITl7syzlbcJ#comments#ixzz0uapXp5Vk

Listen to him say "thank you" when I tell him about NYC's infrastructure is shot and that I hope he will help the people of NY and again he says thank you translated in to "F-you" you are dismissed.

Watch him on this YouTube and hear his non-speak, his cowardly non-answer which I interpret as he is anti-gay marriage and there doesn't believe in equal rights.

Please explain how straight people get off denying gay people equal rights to marriage when straight people are marriage gluttons, getting married 2,3,4,5 times?

Some anti-gay people are closeted gays.

Special note:  Goldsmith could not handle questions from 2 white male reporters.  He was out of his league and does not belong in New York politics.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Hospital needed where St. Vincent's was by Yetta Kurland

Dear Neighbor,

Last night close to a hundred members of the Coalition for a New Village
Hospital along with other community members came out to the Community Board 2
Full Board Meeting to demand that a resolution to lock the land use at the site
of St. Vincent's be put on the agenda for the next meeting.

I am going to be honest, we weren't optimistic, but we were determined,
committed and we are on the right side.

In the sweltering heat of Elizabeth Irwin High School's auditorium, person after
person got up to repeat the message; we need a hospital back at the site of St.
Vincent's, we don't need another needs assessment, we need to lock the use of
the land so it can only be a hospital.

The Board listened, and I am delighted to report, no actually I am ecstatic to
report, that thanks to the courageous efforts of several Community Board Members
and the continued hard work of so many of you who have been fighting since the
hospital closed on April 30th... we didn't get it on the agenda... WE PASSED THE

That's right, the Board passed a resolution that put a land lock on the property
to stop any changes to the zoning, certificate of occupancy or other part of the
land use that would eliminate the hospital use.  It also called on the
Bankruptcy Court to be advised of this and to petition the Court to set up a
Community Council with the help of New York City Corporation Counsel to let the
Court know we want a hospital on the site of St. Vincent's and to be engaged in
the Bankruptcy Court's procedures.

I will send around a copy of the resolution as soon as it is available, but in
the meantime I wanted to share this news with you as soon as possible.

This is especially meaningful given the recent statement by Speaker Christine
Quinn in Chelsea Now that she "will continue our push for a full service
hospital here".  The Community Board and the City Council will play the key role
in determining the future of St. Vincent's when it comes to the heavy real
estate interests surrounding the area.  Now, with a commitment from both it is
substantially more hopeful that we can in fact ensure the site is only used for
a hospital.

Next, we have to make it happen now, with the infrastructure that already
exists.  This is up to us and our statewide officials to put pressure on
Commissioner Daines to obey the law.  New York Public Health Law requires that
the Department of Health affirmatively make a finding that there is no need
for a hospital before it takes away the services of a hospital.  In the near
future we will be sending around a letter to Commissioner Daines and we hope you
will get your electeds, tenant associations, block associations and other
community groups to sign off.

I am very happy to share this victory with you and want to personally thank you

In solidarity,

Dear Readers:  Yetta sent out this email blast and I posted it here on New York Focus.  I want to commend Yetta Kurland for her on going activism that comes truly from the heart along with other dynamic New Yorkers fighting to get a hospital in what was St. Vincent's.  She and other true hearts fought to keep St. Vincent's open.

Thanks to Yetta for her constant hard work and for sending out these emails keeping us all updated.  I do not attend community board meetings because I found them less than satisfactory to be polite.  We did not vote for these community board representatives and I have always said this is the least democratic part of city government that is until Mike Bloomberg and Christine Quinn collaborated to deny the people of New York a referendum.

I do not understand how our hospitals are closing yet banks need to be rescued?

Here is a YouTube interview with Jim Fouratt and I agree with him on everything but Christine Quinn ever finding her way back to putting the people before developers and king Mike Bloomberg's agenda.  


Thursday, July 22, 2010

Bloomberg's Deputy Anti-Gay & a disaster? by Suzannah B. Troy

I telephoned City Hall, actually the mayor's office, 8 am yesterday to speak to the new "deputy" in town, Deputy Stephen Goldsmith.  I met him the day before at The Crain's breakfast for him and a few hundred business people and two activists, me and a friend.

Watch the YouTube I am posting and hear how he responds to my questions.  He shook my hand and it was a hand shake I can only describe as a small dead fish; completely limp and disingenuous.  He said, "thank you" to me twice actually.  Each time I felt he was saying, "F-you, you are now dismissed."   Don't actually ask me questions about politics, infrastructure and the harsh reality the people of New York actually need people in office that will be their advocate and work and fight for them.

The woman that answered the phone for the mayor's office transferred me over to Goldsmith's office.  You see, he did not give me his card.  He did hand out his business card but not to me.   What ever I looked like or perhaps my questions some how registered as not a person to hand your business card to.

So much for Crain's and their networking.   What was clear from the Crain's breakfast is besides my questions before the event started and the questions of only two news reporters who happened to be -- you guessed it -- two white males -- Stephen Goldsmith could not handle the heat or should I say pressure of their questions.   He won't be here long.  He won't make it as long as Dollarbill Dan Doctoroff who left king Mike's public empire to re-join his private empire.

Dan considered himself the man in charge of infrastructure until the steam pipe explosion that looked like a terror attack by Grand Central.  You see, I would call and email him about the way too rapid development and NY's old infrastructure.  I made it clear I felt Bloomberg and he were endangering us and were leaving a hell of a mess for when they actually left office.

Dollar bill Dan quietly and quickly left office.  Bye, bye.

Stephen Goldsmith thinks he can take on Albany.  Good luck Stephen.  You would have better luck taking on the Mafia perhaps converting them to vegetarianism.

Good old Stephen thinks he can come in here and at the Crain's hosted breakfast talk about closing firehouses.  Bloomberg and his socialite mega millionaire city planner called Amanda the peoples' Burden aided their developers pal in a reckless tsunami of shady development helping to create mass displacement, perhaps a record number of people displaced and a record number of infrastructure related problems from water main breaks, sewage, Con Ed problems as well as expansion so over the top Con Ed set a record hiring outside contractors, to the worst street conditions seen in years with DOT repaving streets not once but twice or even more than twice.

Why do the streets look like bombs went off on them.  If the FDNY is not answering fire calls they are responding to infrastructure problems including man hole cover exploding with dramatic fires that so far have not caused any deaths...so far.   We have had heart breaking deaths including children to fires and what does Deputy Goldsmith do at his first Crain's hosted breakfast?

This highly inarticulate man in a very expensive suit with an impressive gold tie tells us he will be closing fire houses.

Interestingly enough Crain's video taped the entire embarrassing disaster for Goldsmith and his new boss king Mike Bloomberg but Crain's did not release any of the let us say awkward or controversial moments and they were many.  Crain's released just a small piece on video on their website.  Mike has been very lucky with the press that way.

Listening to Goldsmith speak, I never heard some one talk so much to give so many 'non-answers'.

Why would Bloomberg hire a Republican this late in the game unless he wants to cater not to the people of NYC but to the conservatives he hopes to woe when he pursues his one big unrealized dream....running for President of the United States?  That is why it is believed Bloomberg took his charitable giving national instead of local.  It is why I believe he burdens the tax payers to the tune of 2 million dollars post-his third term hiring so many campaign staff with 6 figure salaries.  Why hire them after the election unless he feels he wants them close at hand to pursue his last chance at perhaps one of his biggest dreams unrealized.  Bloomberg doesn't fully grasp that he displaced so many people and angered even more denying us a referendum that he paid a record amount of money to barely win the most humiliating and expensive win in NYC history.  He won't win a presidency or any political office again.  He is very smart and accomplished but he lost sight of the fact he serves the people.  He now hired Goldsmith who is not a people person and clearly doesn't represent New Yorkers.  Goldsmith looks at this city as some corporate business model.

Denial is the new crack cocaine for politicos from Albany to City Hall.

The one issue Goldsmith was clear on is the devastating budget crisis coming our way here in NYC next year.  As usual it was as if no one heard what he had to say and city council will continue to vote themselves raises and give slush money to charities where their life partner (what is Christine Quinn's significant other's name) sits on a board, ditto for their wives, brothers, sisters, husbands, etc.

Albany and City Hall politicians are 2nd to last to deal with the harsh reality of what are terrible economic  crisis is coming our way because they contributed to it hugely and Albany still has not dealt effectively with the budget crisis.   The last people to deal with and won't be able to escape it like the politicians here in NYC are the people.

Under Bloomberg the city saw a new wave of "sexual McCarthyism" with two women owned Adult Toy Stores Babeland raided and after the raid Babeland is now no longer allowed to rent adult films, some that were instructional but all that a guy like Goldsmith would call porno.  Rumor on the street is the NYPD were picking their super elite hottie cops to entrap gay men in adult book stores.

Goldsmith hemmed and hawed at the Crain's breakfast but after a very long non-answer he sure sounded like he said he is anti-gay marriage which I interpret as he does not believe in equal rights.  In America we have straight people that are marriage gluttons having been married 2, 3, 4, 5 times but people like Goldsmith would deny gay people the right to even one marriage?

Why would Mike Bloomberg bring in a conservative Republican who wants to privatize everything unless he has his eye on the White House?  Either way Goldsmith will not be here long.  He said in his non-speak.  Hey guys why are you asking me such tough questions.

Goldsmith is out of touch with New Yorkers and a fish out of water in NYC.

I left him a voice mail on Deputy Goldsmith's answering machine at City Hall.  I want a  STRAIGHT forward answer, no hemming and hawing, do you believe in gay marriage and equal rights?  I left my telephone number.

I have not heard back from him.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Queens Forgotten Borough by Marc Zazeela

Queens is the forgotten borough.

Most people consider Manhattan the jewel of NYC.  While this may be true, there are 4 outer boroughs that deserve some attention too.  Most people think of The Bronx Zoo, Coney Island, and the Staten Island Ferry.  Queens is often overlooked.  It can be an inexpensive,  tourist free, summer time destination.  No hotel reservations (sleep in your own bed), no airport hassles (limousine service courtesy of the TA), no car rentals, no travel agents.  Fact is, there are lots of fun and interesting things in Queens.  And, unlike Manhattan, there is no master development plan underway to destroy the neighborhoods and transform the borough into one giant "plan-o-grammed" pedestrian mall.  Queens is still a borough of neighborhoods, each with it's own character, flair, ethnicity, and style.

Here are only a few of the unknown treasures: there is the Art Museum at PS 1, in Long Island City.  An internationally renowned art museum of contemporary works.  You can hop over to Flushing Meadows Park and watch the Dragon Boat Festival on August 7 & 8.  After the races, you can quench your thirst at the Bohemian Hall and Beer Garden in Astoria.  And, to put a relaxing finish on your outing, you can head over to Forest Park, in Forest Hills, where you'll find a golf course, band shell, carousel, hiking and biking trails, horseback riding, and a host of other activities.  And, of course, you don't want to miss the Ice King of Corona!  Check the website athttp://queens.about.com/ for more and more cool things to do.

I have lived in New York for my entire life and in Queens for the past 25 years.  I am always amazed at the variety of interesting things to do and I find myself discovering something almost every day.  Most of Queens is accessible via public transportation so even the most ardent Manhattanite would find it difficult to make excuses for not visiting. Where else can you take a trip to exotic lands for a mere $2.25 in subway fare?  Who would have thought that you can find all of this, for so little, right in the heart of New York City?

Marc Zazeela
Queens, New York resident for the past 25 years.  I enjoy all things NYC. I love having out of town guests so I can show off our wonderful city.  I love playing "tour guide" because it gets me to places in our great town that I've never been(when was the last time you visited the Empire State Building observatory...it's pretty cool!). Having traveled the United States extensively, for business and for pleasure, I can state with much confidence that there is no place I would rather live.  I'm a big city boy.  Sure we have our issues, but does Paradise really exist?  There is no other place in our country that can offer the diversity of people, attractions, culture, cuisine, architecture, etc., etc., etc.  You get the picture.  I am aware of the problems we have and I don't make light of any of them.  However, my personality is such that I look for the silver lining in every dark cloud (you'd be surprised at how easy it is to find).  I've learned that negative attitudes are too easy and generally cause stress, depression, and real physical problems.  I'm a happy guy!  

I love the Liz Smith quote on Suzannah's blog.  I was in a pretty serious car accident 2 weeks ago and, after looking at my car, I realize how lucky I am to have been able to walk away in one piece.  Thankfully, my hair did not ignite!  I feel as if I've been given a second chance and I do not intend to waste it!

From Suzannah, 
Thanks Mark for your interest in my blog and sharing your love of New York City and in particular Queens.  Sorry to hear about the car accident.  Heal well.  Liz Smith quoted my favorite Zen saying, which is, "Live each moment as if your hair is on fire!".   Translation: give each moment all your passion.

Deputy Goldsmith is Jane Jacobs? by Suzannah B. Troy

Jane Jacobs was turning in her grave when Christine Quinn got a similar introduction at the Jane Jacobs street signing.

In NYC is you are rich enough or well connected enough you can get awards at the United Nations to just about anywhere and be introduced as Jane Jacobs even though people like Christine Quinn took kick backs from developers and aided Mike Bloomberg in making the Village look like a bad xerox of mid-town turning in to a bad xerox of Dubai.

How a Republican that wants to close our fire houses to save money as his boss continues to push a reckless tsunami of development on old New York's dilapidated infrastructure and also is anti-gay marriage could be compared to Jane Jacobs is beyond me.

Below my YouTube of Christine Quinn, Mike Bloomberg's mini me being introduced just like our new anti-gay marriage, close our firehouses Deputy mayor Stephen Goldsmith.

If you want to see how inarticulate Goldsmith is, how uncomfortable he is with the questions from only two reporters and being introduced in the same sentence as Jane Jacobs here is the link to the video.
http://media.crainsnewyork.com/title,c6ff1c8e   Oops, Crain's left out every controversial piece of footage from yesterday's breakfast so expect a very short clip.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Horses the heat wave - Activists speak out! posted by Suzannah B. Troy

as exploited Carriage Horses suffer
horse chainsJOIN US FOR A DEMO: NYC has been experiencing a brutal heat wave for several weeks. This may well turn out to the hottest July on record. According to the law, carriage horses are not supposed to be worked when the temperature is 90 degrees or above. There is no consideration for humidity. But this is not always the case as drivers ignore the temperature and take their horses out - or the ASPCA, the only agency designated to monitor and take the temperature, is not there to do so.We have proof that drivers have violated the law multiple times with impunity and abandon. But who will do anything about it? Where is the accountability? Please speak out for the horses. Come to a demo to let NYC know that we are not going to take it anymore. We want change.

  • When: Thursday, July 22nd - 1:00 to 2:00 PM
  • Where: Central Park South and Fifth Avenue (north side)
  • Sponsors: Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages and Friends of Animals
Join us during your lunch hour or break. Although we will have posters, we invite you to use your creativity to make your own.

facebook logo"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead.

Mike Bloomberg's New Deputy by Suzannah B. Troy

I went up to the new deputy in town, deputy mayor Stephen Goldsmith before the breakfast hosted  by Crain's began and interviewed him.  I ask him if perhaps Bloomberg hired him, a Republican, late in the game because Bloomberg wants to run for President.  You can hear it and watch on my YouTube channel.

Eric Engquist, the reporter hosting this event  for Crain's, is a smart man, good reporter but he sounded like little lord Fauntleory when he said firehouses too close to each other are redundant and Goldsmith agreed.   Goldsmith wants to close them.

How can you push development and close firehouses?  Besides fires where people have died every so recently how about the constant infrastructure breaks including man holes covers exploding and gas leaks and the FDNY answer those calls as well which are so many since Bloomberg pushed a reckless tsunami of development.

Based on Goldsmith's non-answers he is anti-gay marriage and he was so wishy washy and like his hand shake limp and unwelcoming -- he is in big trouble and I don't see him lasting as long as Dan Doctoroff who I would write and call about infrastructure concerns and he said no worries until the steam pipe explosion that looked like a terror attack by Grand Central.

This guy could not handle a few tough questions at a breakfast by 2 news reporters in front of a mostly white audience of business people...he won't last as long as dollar Bill Dan Doctoroff.

He did mention something about a 3.75 billion dollar deficit -- I think he did and of course he happened to mention closing fire houses and getting rid of emergency boxes.

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