Brooklyn Living is the website for Brooklynites and visitors
to discover the rich cultural roots of our city and to understand
how it is changing into the middle of the 21st century.
It is a beautiful day in the neighborhood
The pandemic is slowly receding and life is returning. The cultural landscape of the Borough and the City
looks like the scraped granite and arêtes that are left behind retreating glaciers. I've been to the Metropolitan
Museum of Art 4 times, trying to cover as much of it as possible. There is an odd and dysfunctional attempt
to make the museum more "Woke". The effort usually results in the replacement of one kind of persistent
racism with another. It doesn't result in an improved museum and the customer base continues to be overwhelmingly
upper-middle class people of European lineage, and tourists. First I tackled the Dutch Masters and the Lehman
collection, which today are next to each other. And then I covered the Impressionists and Modern art.
The Rockefeller Oceanic section in under reconstruction, as is the Dutch European Arts section and the
Near East section, so all the best parts of the museum are essentially being rebuilt. I got one last
shot of the Near East collection as you will be able to see on still photos and video's listed below.
On the second trip I went to see the Greek and Roman section, and the statues. The Met has an
interesting exhibit on the painting of Greek statues in ancient times, which is mostly in the Mezzanine
marked as the Etruscan Arts area. I did not hit this spot on this trip, but did see it later. I did hit
the Tudor's exhibit, which was very popular but which I found to be largely drab. We then also viewed an
exhibit on the relationship between Cubism and the Trompe l’Oeil Tradition, which was eh. More exciting
was the Chinese Enamel in Decorative arts, and the "Before Yesterday We Could Fly: An Afrofuturist Period Room".
At this point, I went home and thought that the Metropolitan is actually much larger than I thought it was.
I thought it was on par with the Rijksmuseum, or even the British National Galleries, but the Metropolitan is
much bigger and after two visits, I felt I only saw about a third of It. I had no idea just how huge the Asian
section of the Museum was. On the third trip I went to see the Near East exhibit, which was likely the last
time I will see it since it is now closed for nearly 4 years, and the interesting Cyprus exhibit. I moved
on the Asia, which opens into a building size Chinese Tapestry and you can go left to China or East to
India. I chose east and spend hours lost in the Indian, South East Asian, and eventually made my way
to the Japanese section, the Chinese gardens and the Kimono special exhibit. The Chinese house and
garden is a barely known part of the museum, that is spectacular and when you visit the Metropolitan,
you really should make it a point to see it, and the surrounding exhibit of Japanese and Chinese ink
drawings and scrolls.
The fourth visit I was determined to get the very underrated American Arts section. Before I got there
I went up to the Etruscan mezzanine which I remembers as a small dead ended detour. It was housing much
of the exhibit about color on Greek Architecture. When I got up there I found a vast collection of
Hellenistic pottery and arts broken down by era and theme, starting with prehistoric artifacts and
extending to Roman glass. It was beautiful and extensive. I loved the carved gemstones that where
used for making imprints before coinage. The skill and workmanship is breathtaking for a time before
industrialization. These are some of the greatest works in the Museum and little seen or known
about. And then around the corner was a breathtaking full sized Roman Chariot, a true highlight of the
entire collection, and a complete set of Roman coins on display from the ANS which continued down the
staircase back to the first floor. It took two hours to go through that section before getting onto
the American Wing which has, "Washington Crossing the Delaware" along with Remington's statues and
paintings, American Impressionists, and several works from sculpture Augustus Saint Gaudens who
designed several US coins, and Georgia OKeefei, and the Ash Can School and the Hudson Art Movement,
In between on this visit I slipped in to see the Denmark exhibit and took a view of the small Baseball
Card exhibit that the Met put up in the the storage area.
All done with four trips, I still have about 20 percent of the museum that I didn't see and whizzed
through the Egyptian section which enters buttresses the main hall and can not be missed, and I didn't
view the Byzantine section, or the customs or fabrics, or the medieval period works, or the interior
rooms, all of which I hope to cover on trip number five.
Metropolitan Museum Tour videos and pictures
Youtube Videos - Youtube steps on the videos and the originals are also on the
webserver listed below.
The city has been out of control and the retail businesses have taken a huge hit. Along Kings Highway
our local retailers are under extreme pressure and many have closed since the pandemic. Through into
the middle of this is an illegal fruit cart operation that is putting 24/7 fruit carts up and down
Kings Highway, usually in front of banks or businesses that will be passive about such activities.
This one opened on East 19th Street and Kings Highway in front of the Dime Savings Bank. It is
blocking the corner and manned by illegal aliens 24/7. The City and City Councilor Inna Vernikov have been
pelted with complaints about this as it is squeezing the tax paying businesses along the Highway which
You can bet the city will do NOTHING about this because they don't care about our businesses or our
lives. They care about putting in traffic cameras and exploiting inter-ethnic confict within the City.
That is all they care about. But if something changes, I will be posting updates.
Have no sympathy for these creeps. Every Fruit Store in the community is owned and manned by LEGAL immigrants
to our fair borough including Chinese, Pakistanis, Russian, and Turks... and they don't deserve to be
stabbed in the back by an illegal gang.
The city has been out of control. It is dirty, overwhelmed with homeless, joyless and dangeorus. We need to return to
sensible governance NOW. It took 8 years for the left to bankrupt us and it will take time to unburry us. Start with the NY Subway.
The subway is not a homeless shelter. It is the life blood of the city and it it needs to be rigiousously policed to be made clean and safe
for tranportation. It is essential for our comerce and social lives.
Do you feel safe with that mask on the Subway?
What can one say at this point. The Covid-19 Pandemic and the political response has largely shattered
the growth and development of our Borough and our City. The current administrations of Cuomo and DiBlasio and their succssors.
have been reckless with our lives, and we are paying the price. Our taxes are stifling. Our City administration
nearly non-existence. All of our learned experience has been cast aside and burned on the funeral pier of
"social justice". Social Justice has moved thousands of psychiatric patients and moved them onto
the streets. We've encouraged communities from around the country to send us their problem cases, and we
have people, especially young people, with severe mental illness, wandering the subways and streets creating
fear among the working class citizens of the city. The Mayor is dishing out his brand of "fairness". Fairness
isn't that people who live in our city, pay rent and work, and who are productive and contributing to our collective
health should live in a clean city and travel without fear or harassment. That fairness, that of the common good, is
summarily denied. Instead, fairness is that drug dealers, and gang members toting hot weapons are to rule over the rest
of use, as we, the people, live in our
graffiti filled communities, with total lawlessness, where Pimps pushing whores
are just businessmen like the laundryman, and drug dealers are victims of institutional racism. Justice is not to
be blind to race, religion and prejudice, but to be used as a tool for social activism. An impartial judge is
not a clog in a wheeler of "social injustice" and even language is under attack.
We are to accept that being White and Being Male that we are automatic benefactors of a privileged class that is
build on slavery that supposedly was initiated in the 1600's, ignoring the facts that most White Americans have
families that have arrived well after slavery and never associated with the Jim Crow south. It ignores the
rampant homelessness among white males in our city.
It ignores the nearly 2:1 ratio of homelessness of men over women.
It ignore the disintegration of the family unit, and destruction of fatherhood, that assault on children. Children without
the protection of their fathers suffer their entire lives, and we ignore this completely.
Meanwhile, many Brooklyn friends are very skeptical of government claims about COVID-19, Masking and Vaccination, and the government deserves all the criticism that it gets. But the fact remains, the COVID-19 kills and vaccines are the only proven method to protect oneself and the community. Please get vaccinated. Don't be crazy in a sea of craziness.
Vision Zero means you are blind
We have become nearly immobile. The changes in traffic patterns, and the shear cost of both the public and private
transportation infrastructure has destroyed our mobility. The 25 mile an hour speed limit, in combination with
traffic cameras, and congestion pricing has destroyed our ability to move freely about the city, accept by bike, which
is completely unacceptable for families and people over 40. Drivers are targeted now as revenue sources through
the increasing proliferation of camera enforcing insane traffic laws that leave dozens of types of unsafe electric
vehicles from scooters to ebikes, unlicensed and deadly to roam streets without any law enforcement while drivers
is automobiles are being driven off the road. Taxis, Truck Drivers, and the family station-wagon are being mauled
in "Vision Zero", a traffic plan for the city and envisions a fantasy world of zero risk, all the while more and more
people are being maimed by unlicensed e-vehicals and unregulated bicycles. Instead of emphasizing law enforcement
and civilian cooperation, government has abandoned us and views mobility and cars as a well of money to use for its
toxic social programs. The result is that the working class is leaving at a record pace, and is never coming back.
People will not live in a circus.
WINS-AM Radio inflaming race relations in NYC
Letter to WINS_AM Radio
I am really sick of your reporting of late, and this on going campaign about a women who lost her cellphone and mistakenly thought it was stolen by a minority youth is beyond the pale. First of all, it is a non-story. People get confused and falsely accuse people all the time of petty theft incorrectly. It is justnot news. Secondly, this report on your part shows fundamental lack of compassion and bigotry by your editorial staff. This women believed her phone was stolen by minority youths, which is a COMMON occurrence in NYC and completely rational thought. To accuse her of bigotry proves your own bigotry.
I've been in retail in NYC for 40 years and minority youth have not only violently mugged me on subway platforms, in trains, and on the streets, but they shop lift every day, all the time. It is perfectly rational for her to have assumed her phone was lifted, and the situation was handled by the hotel, seemingly calmly and efficiently. There is no crime here, other than WINS-AM harassing this women for a mistake that any one of us could have made. WINS is not just making a dangerous and bigoted campaign to victimize an innocent women, but you are inflaming race relations in the city. Obviously, you are take a page from the Sonny Carson playbook for political agitation, which lead directly to the Crown Heights Riots. It is NOT ACCEPTABLE.
The continued politicization of this Virus and the Lockdown of NYC for the sake of Cuomo's Ego
"If you look at where the cases are coming from, if you do the contact
tracing, you'll see they're coming from three main areas: establishments
where alcohol is served, gyms, and indoor gatherings at private homes,"
Governor Cuomo said. "The reason we have been successful in reducing the
spread in New York is we have been a step ahead of COVID. You know where
it's going; stop it before it gets there. And you know where it's going
by following the science. This is the calibration that we've talked about:
increase economic activity, watch the positivity rate - if the positivity
rate starts to go up, back off on the economic activity. It was never
binary -- economic activity or public health -- it was always both."
Coumo just made most Shabbat Meals and Kiddishes ILLEGAL. If you have a family of 14 are you supposed to just execute your 4 youngest children. The science is not "telling us" to close family gatherings. The Science is telling us that
whenever we open up society, we get an increase in COVID-19 cases, and that is exactly what we should expect. Any
third grader can figure this out. Coumo has NO PLAN to open up NY, because COVID-19 is never going away. So he expects
us to do this forever, with him lauding over every aspect of our lives. He tells us when we can go to shule, when
we can have fanily dinners, when we can get haircuts, etc etc. He is just a power hungry despot. He is morally
corrupt. To his core, he is a bad man.
Here is the turth about Cuomo. He hasn't opened a SINGLE hospital bed since this started. He hasn't ramped any
quarantine facilities. He hasn't spent a nickle to actually address this virus. He has effectely destroyed the
NY economy, and bankrupted the Government. He has no plan other than destroying the very fabric of our society.
Coumo Edict for 11-10-2020
Delivery and Curbside Pick-Up without Alcohol May Continue After 10 PM
Indoor and Outdoor Gatherings at Private Residences Will Be Limited to
Gyms Also Required to Close Daily at 10 PM Statewide
New Rules Effective Friday at 10 PM
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced new COVID-19 restrictions on
bars, restaurants, gyms and residential gatherings in New York State.
Effective Friday at 10 p.m., bars, restaurants and gyms or fitness
centers, as well as any State Liquor Authority-licensed establishment,
will be required to close from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. daily. Restaurants will
still be allowed to provide curbside, food-only pick-up or delivery
after 10 p.m., but will not be permitted to serve alcohol to go. The
State Liquor Authority will issue further guidance for licensees as to
what sales are continued to be permitted.
The Governor also announced that indoor and outdoor gatherings at private
residences will be limited to no more than 10 people. The limit will be
implemented due to the recent prevalence of COVID spread resulting from
small indoor gatherings including Halloween parties. These gatherings
have become a major cause of cluster activity across the state. Further,
this public health measure brings New York State in line with neighboring
states including Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. This new
rule is also effective Friday at 10 p.m.
"If you look at where the cases are coming from, if you do the contact
tracing, you'll see they're coming from three main areas: establishments
where alcohol is served, gyms, and indoor gatherings at private homes,"
Governor Cuomo said. "The reason we have been successful in reducing the
spread in New York is we have been a step ahead of COVID. You know where
it's going; stop it before it gets there. And you know where it's going
by following the science. This is the calibration that we've talked about:
increase economic activity, watch the positivity rate - if the positivity
rate starts to go up, back off on the economic activity. It was never
binary -- economic activity or public health -- it was always both."
Governor Cuomo continued: "The rules are only as good as the
enforcement. Local governments are in charge of enforcement. There are
only two fundamental truths in this situation: it's individual discipline
and it's government enforcement. Period. End of sentence. I need the
local governments to enforce this."
The Governor took these actions amid a widespread increase in cases
throughout the nation and an increase in New York, which was expected
moving into the fall and winter seasons.
Clear Evidence of Systemic Voter Fraud in New York City
These are the pictures of two voter registrations for both my daughter and me,
with instructions for absentee voting and voter ID cards.
The problem is my daughter is not only not registered in NY, she hasn't
lived in NYC in over 10 years and has resided in Alaska, but in the 7
years I have lived here, she has never so much as set foot in this house.
CLEAR evidence of SYSTEMIC voter fraud in NYC.
Get Used to Power Alerts as the city continues to backslide
Con Edison is reporting an issue with the power grid in parts of Brooklyn, so we NEED New Yorkers to conserve energy today if you live in:
• Bay Ridge
• Fort Hamilton
• South Park Slope
• Sunset Park
We’ll provide updates from Con Ed when we have them.
We are asking some of our customers on the west side of Brooklyn to
conserve energy while company crews repair equipment. We have reduced
voltage 8 percent in the area to protect equipment and maintain service
as crews make repairs. #safetyfirst http://spr.ly/6018GjI1a
8:38 AM · Jul 30, 2020
Con Edison Asks Customers in Area of Brooklyn to Conserve Energy
New York – July 30, 2020 -- 05:30 AM
Company Reduces Voltage by 8 Percent to Maintain Reliability Con Edison
is asking some of its customers on the west side of Brooklyn to conserve
energy while company crews repair equipment. Con Edison has reduced
voltage 8 percent in the area to protect equipment and maintain service
as crews make repairs.
The area is bounded on the north by Third Street and Fourth Street, by
the Narrows and Gravesend Bay on the south, by Fort Hamilton Parkway and
Fifth Avenue on the east and by Gowanus Bay and the Narrows on the west.
The area includes 96,600 customers in the Gowanus, Park Slope, Sunset
Park, Borough Park, Bay Ridge, Ft. Hamilton, Dyker Heights neighborhoods.
Con Edison has asked customers in these areas not to use energy-intensive
appliances such as washers, dryers, and microwaves until crews complete
repairs. The company also asks customers to limit unnecessary use of air
conditioning. If you have two air conditioners, use only one and set it
to the highest comfortable temperature.
The voltage reduction also affects the Windsor Terrace, Kensington,
Flatbush and Bensonhurst neighborhoods.
Customers can report outages and check service restoration status
at www.conEd.com/reportoutage, or with our mobile app for iOS or
Android devices, or by calling 1-800-75-CONED (1-800-752-6633). When
calling, customers should report whether their neighbors also have lost
power. Customers who report outages will receive updates with their
estimated restoration times as they become available.
Customers can follow Con Edison on Twitter or like us on Facebook for
general outage updates, safety tips and storm preparation information.
The equipment problems in these neighborhoods have no effect on the rest
of the Con Edison system. Con Edison will provide updates to affected
customers directly and through the media as the situation warrants. The
company is in communication with New York City Emergency Management.
Boro Park - Social Distancing and Summer Camps
id = boropark
A picture of the post Coronas Virus lock down in the very packed Borough Park Community
Borough Park in Central Brooklyn is one of the densest areas of the city, famously
populated with Orthodox Jews of a variety of strips. This is a community whose central
characteristic is the large number of children that live here.
Orthodox families tend to be very large. Schools (Yeshivot)
play a central roll of daily life. Kids start early in Yeshvia,
often for morning prayers at 6AM, and finish at 9PM. Children
form tight bonds and deep networks, and through these networks,
families are connected. Jewish homes serve more to warehouse
children rather than be places where they play and live. The
centerpiece of the home is mostly the Shabbos Table.
With the Yeshivots closed, the foundation for child safety, and
activities was kicked out of the community, leaving housing
overwhelmed, and destroying much of the economic welfare of the
neighborhood at the same time, as Yeshivot are the largest
employers in the area. Streets are by and large packed with
children. During the Summer, the normal routine involves taking
the entire family to bungalow colonies throughout the Catskills,
often around South Fallsburg. As we head into Summer, camps and
bungalows have been closed because "The Science Say they should
be". It is a damning statement about the entire government
approach to the epidemic. In an attempt to stop the spread of
the virus (slowing it down as a goal was thrown out the window
in about 30 seconds), our decisions have increased its spread
and exposed our most vulnerable populations, the elderly and
those with co-morbidities, especially men. This is a photo
journal of one of my trips through the neighborhood. I happened
to managed to get a hook in my hand, so I went from the
Pharmacy, Medical Arts on 55th Street and New Utretch Avenue, to my
Doctors office at 44th Street and 9th Avenue. From there I
walked to my clients medical office on 40th Street and 13th
Avenue, to 50th and 13th to pick up the B11 Bus back to
Midwood. The complete Photo
Journal is recorded as a slide show at 1024 pixels.
As one views the slideshow of photographs, a few things can be
pointed out. First, although there are quieter areas about the
community, you see that children eventually find each other, and
congregate, socialize and play. Sometimes, this is supervised and
most often it is not. Often it is corralled into one gated front
yard, but not always. Older children watch younger children, but
you rarely see that adults are closely following or supervising
children's activities. This is a bit of a throwback to an earlier
era when your folks kicked you out of the house in the morning and
you were expected to make friends in the neighborhood and play.
Parent depend on the safety of the community and the communities
invisible structure. One might not be aware of it, but there
are eyes all over the neighborhood watching out for children.
This is common in all Jewish communities from Jerusalem, where
I found 3 year old toddlers wandering around the streets of
the Jewish Quarter in the old city, to Brooklyn, Lakewood and
wherever Orthodox Jews live.
The second thing one will notice is that the housing is cramped
and packed with tall townhouse style homes. You see porches
with high gates all about the town. Many of the apartment
buildings you see are actually converted to schools or elderly
care facilities and such. You see sidelined school buses,
and samples of the network of private buses used for public
transportation to other outposts of American Jewish life, such and
Monsey, and Lakewood. This community is not just packed in, but
is mobile through its network of buses, trains, and lastly, cars.
Finally, I would like to point out that much of the retail
space, particularly on New Utretch Avenue under the elevated D
train, is still closed or now vacant. The pernicious economic
clobbering that this community took is similar to the rest of
Brooklyn. It has been cataclysmic.
The purpose of spending the considerable amount of time
documenting this is because Summer Camps in New York State have
been closed, supposedly because the sciences says so. Science
doesn't tell government what to do. It informs about probable
outcomes, and theorizes about causation in our universe. It is
not a moral force, and it is often wrong, especially in the fog of war.
Expertise in an area of study doesn't qualify them to produce real policy.
Real policy is a political matter. And it is not uncommon for experts to
be wrong. They almost always have tunnel vision.
In this case someone is feeding Governor Cuomo bad information and
they need to be fired. It is bad science to says sending children
into open air environments in the country poses a greater risk to
themselves and the community than stuffing them into the sultry
streets of the city. This is crazy thought, proposed by a
madman. Look with your eyes?!? Do these children LOOK safer
from infectious disease than they would in summer camps, isolated
from the main streams of civilization for 2 months so they can
swim and play securely, in widely open spaces that are within fenced
in communities which have minimal incoming and outgoing traffic?
What is wrong with our government? Summer camps were devised
and designed to combat the dangers of epidemics in the summer by
getting the children out of the danger of New York City.
Closing them is exactly the opposite of what we should be doing.
Get these kids out of danger!
From the very start of this pandemic, there has been a fundamental
lack of understanding of the human condition. It has been
relentlessly assumed that people can be harmlessly isolated and
caged into their homes. This has been an insane presumption from
the beginning and it has continued until now. The community
needs to step up and end this idea that there is a justifiable
consensus on this concept. There is no such consensus within
medicine or in the larger community. The statisticians behind
these epidemiological models seemingly have no understanding of
humanity, other than that people are "things" that can catch
disease and die. How else do you explain the over reach, and
laziness of government action since this has started. A position,
such as the government has taken, that the lose of a single life
to disease is not acceptable fails everyone.
Disease is an unfortunate part of the human condition, as is
death. It can be prolonged, put off, struggled against, but it
can not be stopped. Doing so at the cost of healthy child
development for millions of children sets into motion
psychological damage that will take years to untangle, if it ever
can. STOP. It is illogical.
Open the summer camps, and spread out and protect our children. This
is what camps are designed for. If anything, the state should
be doing everything possible to make sure every child has a
safe, and appropriate summer camp experience in this year of
the COVID-19 virus. Deploy buses and allocate land and
resources to get children out of the City. The dividend for all
of us is safer children, and the beginning of the healing process
that this trauma has created.
Congressional Elections - 9th Congressional District Election
Vote for Chaim Deutch in the Democratic Primary
Brooklyn is one of the worst gerrymandered communities in the US. After the
surprise election of Bob Turner in the District that was Anthony Weiners, the
Democratic party has carefully divided the Jewish community of Brooklyn, splitting
it between the liberal upper west side, and the liberal community of
Bedford-Stuyvesant, Crown Heights and Flatbush. The Congressional for of the Jewish
Community in Brooklyn has been all stolen. That leaves the community with one true
candidate, in Chaim Deutch, as an experienced voice for the community. He is not
just our best chance to trend against radical leftist candidates, but in of himself,
he is a solid choice for the Democratic Primary. Chaim Deutch has the right blend
of collaboration and across ideological practicality to make an excellent, moderating
voice for the entire district, and maintain solid positions for matters that are
key to the Jewish community within the Borough. For too long, the most populous
Borough with the largest Jewish population outside of Israel has been blocked from
having native representation. Chaim Deutch can correct that situation. On the
primary coming June 23rd, voting for Deutch is essential.
In an ideal world, Black voters, either from the Caribian or African Americans, and Jewish voters would
not be at each others neck. There is a large enough population, and enough districts
for both to have adequate representation. Democratic gerrymandering has produced
this corrosive situation, and in my opinion it serves nobodies purpose.
Riots Return to Brooklyn
It is a toxic combination. We have a huge number of unemployed and out of school young people.
We have a mixed message being sent by the city about law enforcement. We have an explosive racial
event in the form of the murder of George Floyd in Minnesota. We have warming seasonal temperatures.
We have raging homelessness on the streets and people with mental illness who need institutionalization
walking the streets and the subway system. We have a tone deaf Mayor who pits one racial group against
the other. We've seen this all before. This mayor has been playing with dynamic and dangerous forces
forces in a large, dynamic city, that he doesn't understand. The city changes with inertia, but once
moving, it is dangerous, and potentially violent. The decisions they have made up until now had no
place to end but in violent riots across the city. Welcome to Brooklyn in 2020, and for many there
is no escape. Anyone with the means to leave New York City, will do just that, leaving a core of
radicalized working class and the victims class to duke it out over the left overs. It will be a
long time for Brooklyn to recover, and we are yet to even be on the right track. Bloomberg managed to
allow for protests to boil without boiling over. This Mayor has proven to be fundamentally unable
to find a balance, and if anything, to add fuel to the fire, because, frankly, he is a bigot and
takes sides instead of focusing on the judicious application of the law and law enforcement.
All this, and the city is staring down the pipe of a huge fiscal crisis.
Rising Graffiti across the city
With the prolonged closure of schools and universities across the city for months, kids have been running
wild across the city, inevitably finding tried and true channel for their frustrations, anxiety, boredom
and restlessness. It is a dangerous cocktail setting up a sorry and violent hot summer.
The Wuhan Virus (COVID-19) and the New York State Quarantine : March 28th, 2020
Over the last few years there has been a plethora of politics that is
transforming New York and Brooklyn culture. Most of it has been bad
for families and bad for middle class Brooklynites. We have a Mayor
who was not born in nor raised in the city. This is not a man who
played stickball in Sunset Park, or played handball in Coney Island.
He never ran through the subway on the way to school, and made passes at
girls at the bagel shop. He never burned a day at A&S, cloths shopping
for the school year. He never waited for the New York Times at 2AM
on Sunday morning, or experienced that violence of ethnic conflict
in our communities. He has no concern for the connection those of
us who are raising families, who live as middle class Brooklynites
intertwined intimately to our communities, and who are the backbone of
an ever shrinking part of the city’s labor pool. The people that
live and work here, and raise our children here are not part of his
core constituency. His obsession is with his “one truth” version of
social justice, born from an influx of wealthy liberal financial traders,
and arts workers, and has given a clear signal to those of us who have
been life-long stewards of our communities that we do not matter.
Until now the lifeline of this borough has been the rich variety of
ethnic communities. These populations have been told flatly that they
are no longer welcome here. The Borough is increasingly monolithic,
with community after community under pressure from wealthy hipsters
turning our city into a larger and larger beer crawl. What was cute and
interesting in Williamsburg has become saturated in Bushwick, Cobble
Hill, Prospect Heights, Crown Heights, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Bay Ridge,
Bensonhurst, Midwood, Kensington, and Sunset Park.
There are still ethnic holdouts. There are however dramatically fewer
of them. And they are dying. What is left is a more monolithic and larger
communities. Largely, we have an established Russian community that
has spread through south Brooklyn, a large Muslim community (anchored
by Pakistani's and Bangladeshi's) about the center of the Borough south
of Prospect Park, and spreading south to Kings Highway. A large Chinese
community has exploded which is centered about Bensonhurst, and spread
through Madison, Midwood, Sheepshead Bay, following Avenue U, through
parts of South Brooklyn running through 86th street.
You still have an enclave of Orthodox Jews in Borough Park Brooklyn. But
elsewhere, in Midwood and Flatbush, the community is shrinking in numbers
and influence, identified by the Democratic political machine as a threat
in its continual support of conservatism in the center of the borough.
West Indians are being squeezed out of Crown Heights and Flatbush.
American Blacks are being pushed out of Bedford Stuyvesant. Latinos are
being pressured out of Sunset Park and Bushwich.
The White Catholic communities of Italians and Irish are mere
remnants. Norwegians, West Indians, American Blacks, Jews, Germans,
Jamaicans, Haitians, Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, are all being pushed
out by a city policy that is flatly opposed to the growth and building
of families. The attack on the automobile cripples multi-generational
living for families which have historically had children and grandparents
living together together nearby. This has been particulary harsh for
the large Jewish and Hispanic families, and the large extended Italian
families. These largely conservative political bases within the Borough
are being stamped out. The coalition of communities that enabled the
Guilliani revolution is no longer here. The results of this are evident
everywhere. Homelessness is rampant. It has been a city policy to
encourage homelessness. This is a direct result of city administrative
decisions to dump homeless and emotionally unstable individuals, from
mental institutions and from Rikers Island's psychiatric ward (where
many were being treated), on to the streets
Traffic is brought to a stop because a bicyclist who is stupid enough
to try to sneak between a large truck and parked cars, and getting
themselves killed. This individual idiocy then justifies reworking
large backbones of traffic and business avenues until there are just not
usable. Coney Island Avenue, Ocean Avenue, Kings Highway, Jay Street,
Utica Avenue, Ocean Avenue, Atlantic Avenue, Livingston Street, Court,
Schermahorn, Bedford Avenue, 86th street, 13th Avenue, 65th Street,
Ralph Avenue, etc., etc are being rendered unusable and shunting traffic
to otherwise tranquil side streets. The SBS Buses (totally a waste of
public money) created Bus lanes through our central business districts,
while encouraging people to not pay the fare. They have destroyed our
shopping districts. The attack on the middle class of Brooklyn just goes
on and on. And they have blanketed our neighborhoods with patrol cars
being pulled from Manhattan details to ticket drivers all over Central
and Southern Brooklyn. Avenue J and Coney Island Avenue has become
ground zero for a massive campaign against drivers.
Now we come to face a pan-epidemic in the Wuhan Virus (Covid-19) and the
city and state are faced with important life shaping decisions. These
decisions are being made by politicians who care nothing for the economy
or the personal freedom of the citizens of New York. The response to the
virus has been neither constructive (in that it cannot reach its stated
goals) nor is it healthy for the people of New York City, especially
families living in the Brooklyn. It is a historically unprecedented
response to disease epidemics. There is no justification for the
exaggerated response. In doing what they are, they are destroying
the economic foundation of the city, if not the region and entire
It starts with a hypothesis stated by our Governor
that is false. The hypothesis is that if we can save a single life by
a radical action, then we are justified and have a moral obligation to
do so. This is fundamentally wrong. It is lovely sounding rhetoric, but
it is impossible. You can not evaluate and treat patients using that
absolutism as a measure of your actions. Nor can one prevent epidemics
like this. Medicine is ALWAYS a balance between acts where we measure
the morbidity and mortality of both individually and for a population.
We are not God, and we can not save everyone. In the healthcare field,
every day decisions are made balancing competing results, and attempting
to do what is best for the individual and the population at large.
It is very personal, as we are often on the front line of disease,
and suffer the emotional trauma of losing patients.
We restrict antibiotic use from patients to preserve susceptibility for
the population as a whole. We sit in rounds and debate if an activity
has a chance to work or if it is just using nursing resources without
likely outcomes. We deal with women that are pregnant who are sick,
HIV patients with resistant Tuberculosis, drug shortages, and the cost
of drugs and procedures to be used in a variety of cases. These all
have not only dollar amounts attached to them, but equally important,
they all consume resources that are not infinite. As it is, medicine uses
technology and resources that in ones common experience, they could never
imagine. The magic of the MRI, and genetic research is mind numbing.
And we still can not save everyone and still have to make hard decisions,
economic ones, every day, on how to allocate medical resources.
Today we have insurance companies and Provider Benifit Management
companies interjecting there own business interests into the process.
The skim the top of every healthcare transaction. And they have no
interest in patient safety, and they are supported by the Government.
They make life and death allocations of resources every day, with no
consideration for human life, or the economy needed to provide adequate
healthcare, not just for the immediate moment, but for an uncertain and
increasingly global future. So, the Governor is just wrong! Everyday
government and medicine makes life and death decisions, placing economic
consideration at the forefront of the healthcare debates over the last
30 years. In fact, it is inherent to healthcare. As for the Mayor is
not even responding rationally to the epidemic and it is not worthy to
even consider his rants at this point
Before we even discuss and statistical analysis of the epidemic
and the virus itself, let’s just look at some of the actions that the
government has in place, and the likelihood that government mandates
might be effective. I am going to pass by the entire (and laughable)
argument about shelter in place that took place between the Mayor and
Governor. I will also not glaze over the discussion about “the percent
of allowable non-essential workers” (which went from 100% to zero in 3
days) with a retort. Your neighbors job is non-essential and your job is
always essential in order to pay your bills. Instead I will focus on what
actions the government has taken, and the expected and actual results.
We can then look at what government should and should not be taking and
how they can or cannot lead to the containment of disease.
On the surface, the Governor and the Mayor has locked down all
of society. The theory is that if everyone stays home, then the spread
of the virus can be slowed or stopped. They have already admitted that
this can’t stop the virus, but they want to “flatten the curve”
of transmission. Government officials are begging for the population
at large, the entire population (elderly, adults, children and infants)
to remain locked in their houses with no end to this in sight.
People have largely cooperated with this under the assumption
of it being a temporary condition which will last a week or two. But
that is a lie perpetrated by the government, the Department of Health,
and CDC. There is no statistical model or prediction about this virus and
its spread which includes the entire population remaining indoors for 2
weeks, reemerging, and it will be over, i.e., no more threat. So in order
to be effective even at "flattening the curve", this complete societal
shutdown would need to take place for at least 4 months... and that is
ridiculously optimistic. As I am editing this, I am hearing on the BBC
radio that the Governor of California is going to continue the lock up
there entire population “until the curve flattens”. That might well
be a problem if the curve never flattens. Realistically we are looking
at an epidemic that will come in multiple waves and last more than a
year before herd immunity develops. (Herd immunity is just a fancy way
of saying that the virus will have killed off as many people as it is
destined to, leaving the rest of the population behind with immunity).
Unless we can intervene with a vaccine, or fight it its severity through
anti-viral therapy, the spread will continue. That means that we will
be locked into our houses for a year! And that is BULLSHIT. There has
never been a disease that has every been effectively stopped by shutting
in the entire human population, or any subset thereof.
You can't lock down 8.5 million New Yorkers and a region of 24
million people for a year! This, conceptually, cannot work. It cannot
flatten the curve. People will not comply. For 2 weeks they can be
convinced to comply and law enforcement can support and take care of
those that won't/can’t, but they cannot do this indefinitely.
Now, let’s not assume Andrew Cuomo and Warren Wilheim are
idiots. They know this can't work, and they know that not even the
national-guard can sweep up hipsters in mass out of Madison Park and put
them all in lock ups. So they spring this on the public gradually, trying
to prevent hysteria about the virus and we move forward. But they slip up,
get excited, and it is off to the races. People panic. Most importantly,
our elected officials have their constituencies and priorities that have
to take care of. Never let medical facts get in the way of theology.
With these motivations intact, we have NO CHANCE to contain this.
The first political priority is that no one is to starve. So
grocery stores and supermarkets need to remain open and well stocked. That
wasn't immediately apparent to our government. After the run on toilet
paper, condoms, thermometers, rubbing alcohol, masks and hand sanitizers
it finally occurred to our governmental bodies that the hysteria the Mayor
created by screaming on the radio was causing hording, price gauging, and
real panic. So since then the truckers and supermarkets are categorized
as "essential" businesses, along with (and here come the constituencies)
illegal workers in the restaurants trade and ancillary food services
(grubhub, etc), electric bicycles businesses, bicycle shops, bodegas,
marijuana dispenses, vape shops and the MTA. Good, problem solved! Except
it is not.
Instead of going to supermarkets we are asked to call for
delivery, and so we have non-monitored and untrained, delivery people
trying to scrape out a buck in this catastrophe that the Government
created. Any protection we have gained is lost.
You see, it is nearly impossible to put 8 million city-dwellers
in isolated bubbles. First of all, the psychological pressure on most
city-dwellers is enormous. Our apartments are very small, and our mental
health is directly attached to our interactions with our communities.
We pay high rent to live in locations near our friends, families,
synagogues, and communities. Stripping us of that interaction is to
isolate us in inadequate cages. And even with that, as we isolate,
our dependency is not reduced. Instead of directly contacting each
other face to face, the contact occurs through a wholly unregulated and
unsupervised delivery systems which bring these items door to door.
They will delivery your Chinese food (a racist comment about food if
ever there was one), your pizza, sushi, your groceries and coffee. And
if that is not enough, there is no stopping us from our "Virtual Life".
We shop at Amazon for socks, shampoo, condoms, fishing gear,
computers, cellphones, electric shavers, and even summer dresses.
After all, we all have to look our best when this is over in a week
or two. And all that stuff is also delivered. Delivery is virus free!
It is delivered since delivery is an all essential businesses, by people
who are touching your stuff, and packaging it, and shipping into the
city, and putting it on the truck, and driving the truck and dropping
it at your door. These are all invisible people, and according to our
government. These people are also superheros who can never get this virus,
or transmit it right to your door, with your sushi and pizza.
This is a huge failure of basic logic and the results are
predictable. There will be no flattening of the curve until we reach
saturation because this model cannot work (and the best part is that we
are likely already saturated with the virus). The President is now talking
of placing the entire region on enforceable quarantine. Wholly cow. We
are totally screwed. Rhode Island is locking up people from New York.
Essex County is blocking traffic to vacation homes. New Jersey is
shutting down the Jersey Shore. The fear that we all have of being
quarantined in a disease hot zone and unable to escape is becoming a
reality. While it would be obviously in the best interest of everyone
to thin out the density of New York City at this point, resistance to
this is happening everywhere.
Now, let’s return to the essential part of public health
and the practice of medicine. Not too long ago, New York had a large
healthcare network largely created by non-profit agencies based on ethnic
and religious organizations. This provided broad care across the
City of New York. Many of them were funded by state programs designed
to promote healthcare for needy, and not so needy New Yorkers through
state funding. This system and capacity has been largely taken apart and
healthcare centralized, which is exactly the opposite of what you want
in an epidemic. In recent memory, Long Island College Hospital that
was closed in a real estate swindle involving both the Mayor and the
Governor (the grand-daddy of closing hospital beds of them all). Also
included were such stalwart institutions of Brooklyn Jewish in Bedford
Stuyvesant, Bushwick Hosptial, Caledonian, Baptist Medical Center,
Hamilton and Harbor Hospitals, Lutheran Hospital, St Johns Episcopal,
St Mary's, Sister Elizabeth. There are almost 70 hospitals from Brooklyn
(representing dozens of needs and thousands of beds) sited in Wikipedia
that have closed or subject to “consolidation”. Many of these
institutions were built and facilitated when battling epidemics and when
fatalities from disease was common, and beds were needed.
By the mid-1970s the discussion about hospitals in New York
took an ugly turn. Increasingly, the 1199 Nursing union came to
represent minority workers and the founding communities for many of
these institutions moved to the suburbs. Our Medicaid system became
increasingly expansive and the entire conversation about healthcare,
with no help from Denis Rivera, or Andrew and Mario Cuomo, took and
increasingly racist tone. Nursing had become an economic refuge for
West Indian women, and other minorities, allowing them to earn a living
and raise children, despite the high numbers of single parents within
those communities. Couched in the battles over healthcare was conflicts
over ethnic strife. Like many discussions over city policy, rational
decision making was overwhelmed by intransigent positions fueled by
mutual ethnic hatred. Somehow it got lost that we were all living in
the same geological location and with epidemics largely conquered, the
government lost focus of what was important. Hospitals and Medicaid
became stand-ins for disgust with drug abuse and high crime. Government
began to decide to close down facilities across the city. Our capacity
has become razor thin. This has turned into our current disaster.
Despite the fact that we have known that a pandemic has been
coming for over twenty years and known that it would most likely originate
in China, we have failed to account for what even a mild epidemic like
the Wuhan Virus (covid-19) would cost us as a society. Now, due to
the medical institution consolidation fiasco we don't have enough beds,
ventilators, or locations to care for a virus with even a 3% death rate
(which is only a moderately deadly disease in the overall history of
epidemics). This is not like Typhoid, Small Pox, or Cholera or the days
of yore, or even the Spanish Flu. Yet, in those days, society faced these
diseases without completely self-destructing, and that is largely because
it understood how to quarantine effectively! We had a surplus of beds
available and the institutions needed in order to separate out individuals
from general society, so that necessary routine services could continue
(e.g., garbage to pick up). Closing down society broadly was never
a consideration. Major League Baseball never lost a single game to an
epidemic, not in 160 years of the sport.
The problem here isn't that this disease is particularly
deadly. The problem here is that our government is so particularly fucked
up that it can no longer deal with inevitable public health events. They
are afraid of ending up with stockpiles of dead bodies on youTube videos
because we don't have enough ventilators. And our government is too
stupid to make an effective vaccine in less than a year and a half.
Think about this. We have an pandemic that is shutting down the world economy to the cost of 100s of trillions of dollars, and suffering of billions of people, and the best vaccine candidate can't be released because they are waiting for 45 volunteers, for over six week for just a single stage. You can't make stuff like this up. We are being lead blindly by experts so singularly focused on their jobs that they can’t get past “We need 45 volunteers and SIX WEEKS just for phase one” while while our society is crumbling under our feet.
They need 45 volunteers and SIX WEEKS while we are all made political prisoners in our homes.
Here is a rundown of vaccine candiates listed in the Jerusalem Post 
The first dose of the mRNA-1273 coronavirus vaccine, developed by the US
National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Moderna’s infectious disease
research team, was given to the first participant in their Phase 1 study
on March 16. The trial of the vaccine, built on previous studies of SARS
and MERS, is intended to provide data on the safety and immunogenicity
of the vaccine, and is expected to enroll 45 healthy adult volunteers
over six weeks.
The Cambridge, Massachusetts-based drug discovery company emphasized
that it is "still early in the story," with no approved drugs to date
emerging from its vaccine program and no previous human trials. The
current trials are being carried out at the Kaiser Permanente Washington
Health Research Institute in Seattle.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the NIH's National Institute of Allergy
and Infectious Diseases, described the study as "an important first step
toward" finding a safe and effective vaccine.
Authorities in China granted approval last week for Phase 1 clinical
trials of a coronavirus vaccine developed by researchers at
Tianjin-based CanSino Biologics and the Academy of Military Medical
Tests of Ad5-nCoV in animals, researchers said, showed that the vaccine
candidate can induce strong immune response and demonstrated a good
safety profile. Prescreening for the first human study has already
begun, and is expected to enroll 108 healthy participants at Wuhan's
“Having committed to provide unconditional support to fight against the
global epidemic, CanSinoBIO is determined to launch our vaccine product
candidate as soon as possible with no compromise on quality and safety,"
said CanSino chairman and CEO Xuefeng Yu.
Located in Kiryat Shmona, the MIGAL - Galilee Research Institute is
working to adapt a vaccine initially developed to prevent the Infectious
Bronchitis Virus (IBV) in poultry.
Funded by the government, the institute hailed a “scientific
breakthrough that will lead to the rapid creation of a vaccine against
coronavirus" in late February, based on the genetic similarity between
the avian coronavirus and the novel coronavirus. Human testing of the
oral vaccine, the institute said, is expected to begin within eight to
10 weeks, and safety approval is expected within 90 days.
"We are currently in intensive discussions with potential partners that
can help accelerate the in-human trials phase and expedite the
completion of final product development and regulatory activities," said
MIGAL CEO David Zigdon.
Pennsylvania-based INOVIO announced the receipt of a new $5 million
grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation on March 12 to accelerate
the testing of its novel DNA vaccine for COVID-19, known as INO-4800.
Currently in preclinical studies, INOVIO plans to advance into US Phase
1 clinical trials next month, backed by up to $9m. in funding from the
Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations. The company says it
aims to deliver one million doses of INO-4900 and handheld intradermal
delivery devices to administer them by the end of 2020.
"Our team of vaccine experts are working around the clock to advance
INO-4800 and we look forward to attracting additional partnerships to
expedite its development to meet this urgent global health need," said
INOVIO president and CEO Dr. J. Joseph Kim.
Reportedly the target of an acquisition attempt by US President Donald
Trump, German biopharmaceutical company CureVac announced that it is
leveraging its mRNA-based drug platform to produce a vaccine against the
The European Commission has offered up to €80 million of financial
support to CureVac, which plans to launch clinical tests in June 2020.
If proven, the commission said, millions of vaccine doses could be
produced at low costs in the company's existing production facilities.
"The combination of mRNA science, disease understanding, formulation and
production expertise make CureVac a unique player to fight against any
infectious disease, no matter whether they are seasonal or pandemic,"
said CureVac CTO Mariola Fotin-Mleczek.
German immunotherapy company BioNTech and American pharma giant Pfizer
signed a letter of intent last week to codevelop and distribute an
mRNA-based vaccine against the novel coronavirus. The partnership,
originally formed in 2018 to develop flu vaccines, will accelerate
BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine program BNT162, which is expected to enter
the clinic by the end of April.
Just one day earlier, the Mainz-based company announced a strategic
development and commercialization collaboration with Fosun Pharma to
advance its mRNA vaccine in China. Fosun Pharma will pay BioNTech up to
$135m. in upfront and potential future investment and milestone payments.
"We feel a duty to exploit our full technology and immunotherapy
expertise to help address the COVID-19 pandemic emergency," said
BioNTech founder and CEO Prof. Ugur Sahin, adding that the company is
also working on a novel therapeutics approach for patients who have
already been infected. Details, he said, will be disclosed "in the
This is not the behavior of a Government that feels pressed by
an emergency. For all the press and yelling, and media drama, and
propaganda, this is not how the government would react if it truly felt
threatened. Evidently, the tipping point hasn't yet reached. But when
the government gets done destroying the economy, they might well be
ready to react appropriately – this is a strange application of the
So why is there not more panic? Well, the truth is, aside from
overwhelming the hospitals, the mortality rate of the Wuhan virus,
while very serious, is just not the kind of disease to destroy a
civilization. Only we seem to be able to do that.
On March 4th, 2020,
Slate Magazine, a more serious and reliable internet publication on many
issues, published an article with the title "COVID-19s Mortality Rate
Isn't As High As We Think". It is a fairly sensible article with a
subtitle of "Don't hoard masks and food. Figure out how to help seniors
and the immunosuppressed stay healthy." This would actually be solid
public policy. It looks at the example of the cruise liner the Diamond
Princess, where the entire boat was exposed to the virus and isolated.
In this case, six deaths have occurred among the passengers, constituting a
case fatality rate of 0.85 percent (i.e. less than 1%). Other mortality
rates data disagree, but here are the hard facts. The vast majority
of people that get this disease will suffer from cold like symptoms,
and never skip a beat of their regular life, except they are locked
up in their homes getting pizza delivery. But it is the luck of the
draw. Some people, about 0.67% of the total US population, will die
from this. That is a lots of people, actually. And they will die from
this, and they will piled up at the local hospital for wonderful photo
ops. My back of the envelop calculation is that nearly 50,000 people will
die from the Wuhan virus with reasonable precautions within New York.
Historically that puts the virus at a mortality rate near the measles,
before vaccinations, and the Spanish Flu. But the terror that we have
generated about this disease is flatly a creation of the internet age and
twitter feeds and a government which thinks it can control everything,
and is attempting to do so.
Our problem here, aside from not moving faster
on vaccination testing and usage, is the unreasonable expectations we
have created that we can control everything. We can't fix everything
and people will die of disease. We die of disease all the time, and
nothing in our science or our culture is going to change about this in
our lifetimes. But this is NOT a biblical level plague and we must calm
ourselves before we truly jeopardize our civilization. More people
will die and suffer from an economic catastrophe than this disease.
Our best weapon to fight this disease is a healthy economy.
We need to be released from our prison. This is not because we defeated
this virus, but despite that. This policy of locking everyone up is not
maintainable. People can't do this. It is cruel. They won't and aren’t
complying. We can't even get people with cancer to stop smoking. They
sneak out the back of the hospital and smoke. We could not stop people
from drinking during prohibition. We can't get them to stop shooting
heroin into their arms. And we sure as hell can't lock up the entire
population for much longer, even with pizza delivery. And the economy is
collapsing. It is not on temporary hold. The economy is a living thing
and as we bankrupt every non-essential business, the foundations for the
essential businesses are also being undermined. If air traffic, as an
example, continues to die, airplanes that require huge maintenance and a
steady flow of spare parts, will be inoperable and the parts manufacturers
go bankrupt. Employees get laid-off. Before you know it, you can't
get cheese into New York City for the essential Pizza, and people will
starve. Communist economies don't work. Despite Mayor Warren Wilhelm Jr
demanding that Trump snap his fingers and make Ventilators just appear,
it just can't be done. It can be done even LESS because we are dependent
on China for parts and materials. We are totally screwed. But most of
us, hopefully me as well, will live. The only question is what kind of
life will we have going forward. The media is talking that this is a
new normal. There is nothing normal about this and political oppression
is not new. I don't want this new normal that they have planned for me
(living alone in my apartment living on sparse government controlled
rations, fearful of disease after disease, wasting my life on facebook)
rather than being at the ballpark, learning Torah with my friends and
children, playing ball with my grandchildren, and fishing. To the all
controlling Pharaoh, I tell you, “Let My People Go”.
As tax-fleeced businesses and individuals flee en masse, and city public spending surges into the stratosphere, financial analysts say Gotham is perilously near total fiscal disaster.
Long-term debt is now more than $81,100 per household, and Mayor de Blasio is ramping up to spend as much as $3 billion more in the new budget than the current $89.2 billion.
According to the Washington Examiner, the state of New York shells out 32 cents from every taxpayer dollar that comes in for welfare payments to those who can't or won't work.
According to the State of New York's Office of the State Comptroller, which pays attention to New York City's government spending, in just the last year, New York City has outspent the rest of the state in public assistance (up 3.7%), safety net assistance (up 6%), family assistance (up 1.7%), while assistance for other programs, such as SNAP, decreased at lower rates than the state as a whole on all fronts.
with more than $1 of every $5 in the operations budget being spent on these legacy costs, according to an analysis by the Citizens Budget Commission, a non-profit fiscally conservative think tank.
In fiscal year 2019, the expenditure on items like debt service for capital construction will account for 21.1 percent of the city's annual operating budget. "By fiscal year 2022, legacy costs are projected to reach $21.9 billion or 22.7 percent of total expenditures," the CBC reported. "These liabilities totaled $252.5 billion at the end of fiscal year 2017 - approximately $81,100 per household."
Efforts to kill the outrageous plan to shove the SBS B82 down our throats is starting to boil over
MTA raises fares again and but can't keep homeless off the trains - Welcome to 2017 and 2018
To celebrate, today is National Jump the Turnstyle Day!!
What else can we do? We riders don't matter. They spend money without any consideration. Nothing but
the best for the MTA. Billions for wifi, but they can't keep the cars clean and the homeless of the trains, and off
the stations, and they raise fares at WILL.
So have fun and jump a turnstyle!! And Protest. And READ about the MTA and its Funding History to date..
The MTA Crisis of 2017
Well, 2016 has seen quite a summer in Brooklyn. Our Mayor has allowed the
Borough to be run over by the homeless. The boardwalk at Coney Island has been overwhelmed
by the homeless and so has the subways. The City Coucil is passing a new tax on poor people
who buy groceries and walk to the store. They are charging 10 cents a shopping bag. The 4th of July,
however was nice and we had a great time as for the first time in quite a few years, Macy's fireworks
have been on the east river, giving Brooklyn a first class view. See these great pics taken on the Ocean Eagle from Sheepshead Bay.
The NY Mets win the NL Eastern Division for 2015. Anyone growing up in the
1960's and 1970's lived in the wake of the Dodgers leaving for Los Angeles.
Brooklyn of crazy for Baseball and the Mets were adopted by the Boro. But
even in the mid-1960s, people around Brooklyn were still intimately familiar
with Koufax and the Dodgers, watching the team from afar with great interest
as their hero entered the WS many times, lead by the Jewish boy from Brooklyn
who refused to pitch on Yom Kippur.
Gil Hodges was well planted in the Brooklyn community, as was many other
Dodgers. Gil's Bowling Alley was a local hangout and my parents met the
Hodges and others ballplayers at the Lanes. By 1969, the town was NY Mets
nuts. Green Buses were filled, leaving from the Junction to the outland of i
Shea Stadium, a service long gone. Mets colors few all over town.
The beloved Mets, were the only team I knew growing up. My mother would
tern in here grave to know of any other team being cheered for by the locals.
So now the Mets meet the Dodgers again the playoffs. Unlike 1988, there are
almost no more Dodger fans alive anymore. But I miss you all. Here is a list of NY Mets Resources
The 25MPH Speed Limit is Worthless
The current activist Mayor has decided that if you need to get from
one point to another in NYC then tough! People are dieing on the roads!
What is the solution, stop them from driving. We should all just sit
here on our buts collecting welfare checks rather than running to JFK
on Atlantic Avenue.
The really upsetting thing about the latest
move to change the speed limit to the crawling 25 MPH is that the cause
of the majority of fatalities on NYC roads is not the 35 MPH limits,
but the lack of enforcement and the reckless driving that is permitted.
A case in point is Atlantic Avenue. Atlantic Avenue is an absolutely
essential thruway from Central Brooklyn to JFK airport and Queens.
In truth, we need a highway there but we don't have the space and the
road shares the LIRR. Posted speed limits have been 35MPH for years
but drivers never drive less than 50MPH on large stretches of the road.
It is an essential access artery without which we are completely locked
into the borough. So this idiot Mayor changed the limit to 25 MPH.
Pedestrian Deaths Problem Solved!!! Not!! The drivers still drive
at 55. The street is still impossible to see around. The crosswalks
still don't leave enough time to cross over. There is still zero
enforcement. But the SQUEEGIE Man is back! Now though, it can be
a huge money generator as ten more MPH on speeding tickets is a huge
cash cow for the working class New Yorkers who most use the road.... you
know the guys who have to get to work Damn It.
Want to read a lie?
The NY Post reports
"The epidemic of traffic fatalities and
injuries are unacceptable," said NYPD Transportation Chief Thomas Chan.
The speed limit drop is part of a larger plan to create slow zones
on thoroughfares throughout the city, as Mayor de Blasio seeks to end
traffic deaths in 10 years.
Arterial roads, which are major roads but not highways, make up only
15 percent of the city streets but represent 60 percent of pedestrian
deaths, according to the DOT.
Really? Are we all stupid? Those 15% of the city streets are
responsible for about 80% of the traffic because 100% of us depend
on them to get the hell around, and in and out of the city. There is
Well, summer is
here and few people can put together a NYC and Brooklyn summer vacation
like Ole Mrbrklyn here. This has been a great summer for fishing
and the water front. I've spent considerable time, over the years,
as a passenger on most of the Brooklyn based boats including the old
Pilot, Explorer and current boats like the Ocean Eagle, Captain Dave, Flamingo III, and, the Marilyn Jean IV.
Last Year we have fished the Marilyn Jean day and night, rain and
shine, and the pilots of this vessel put me on the fish every time
and have also attracted a very decent group of traveling companions.
Tony Pelican, Frank, Felix, Anthony, Joe Joe and Ralph never fail to
make good company, and to freely help with a tip or two on how to bring
them in. We've had some memorable times.
Heading: 2013 Politics The term limits are finally taking
affect, which is presenting the public with a bewildering number of
new candidates for city council. Within Brooklyn, the large block of
ethnic Jewish voters have a chance to put elected officials into office.
Since Jewish political power has been gerrymandered from existence
within the Boro on the federal congressional level, these local elections
are perhaps alone in allowing for Jewish representation. Furthermore,
many minority areas have been left with minimal leadership development as
politicians of the Democratic Party sit on districts and have discouraged
constructive participation. Meanwhile areas of the northern borough have
not yet unlocked their political voice as newer residents of redeveloped
communities. All this can change with the term limits. There has been
a lower level leadership vacuum in the city since Koch administration.
There are just not enough experienced and decent candidates to even
make a field for a Mayoral race. Term limits can change this starting
In the 48th Council District,
the best Democratic Candidate, by far, is Chaim Deutsch. Chaim Deutsch
has been in city government for nearly 20 years, but that would not
alone be a reason to elect him. In fact, that might be an argument to
keep him out of office except that Chaim Deutsch has a record which when
examined shows someone who truly understands the essential meaning of
representation of a community and supporting its needs. Chaim Deutsch
has raised, and continues to raise his children in the community and has
done the foot work for decades, working to protect our interests, may it
be from working with the people who suffered losses from Hurricane Sandy
to something as small as registering bicycles with the police department
in the 70th precinct. But he doesn't just bring city services, but he
motivates the community through his enthusiasm, hard work and example,
to come to the city's agencies and political structure to bend the city
to the community's needs. Chaim is a community worker who isn't just
trying to pluck the greatest prized pork for specific constituencies.
He does not view the City Government as a huge Thanksgiving turkey to be
carved up to the bone and left empty after a feeding frenzy. Chaim has
a record of organizing people to work for and with the City for the
community, and that, not pork barrel politics and payola, is the very
cornerstone of good governance.
In the wake of the Bloomberg
administrations 12 years in office, a lot of change will be rushing it.
Bloomberg has left a good part of this City fundamentally broken.
His mayoralty has all but ignored the outer boroughs needs, in his rush to
regulate everything that moves, and stamp out the rest. He has pushed his
agenda of bicycles, commuter taxes, and fattening the MTA relentlessly,
making expensive changes to the city's landscape that would make it
difficult or near impossible for future governments to undo. It has
become a city that can't pick up the trash on Kings Highway and Pitkin
Avenue, but has lined up pretty new bicycles all over downtown Brooklyn
by the thousands and planted trees in the middle of Ocean Avenue. It
can't motivate the MTA to hold down expenses and provide services, but it
can fine outer borough eating establishments in a discriminatory manner,
raising record amounts, and forcing local businesses into bankruptcy,
while the rats run naked all over the subway tracks. Meanwhile, the City
Council has been asleep at the switch, concerned mostly with their pet
pork, allowing itself to be steamrolled for a price. Over site, budget
and control as been the last thing the council has been concerned with.
The 48th Council district deserves a City Council member who can
represent us, not just cut deals for more pork. He understands that each
of us must feel like they are participants IN government, and not just
clients OF government.
The Brooklyn Museum has over 2000 photographs of
historical Brooklyn which are not on display by Photographer George
Bradford Brainerd who lived from 1847 through 1887. Over 200 of
them are reproduced on the Museums Website and it deserves a look (not
to mention an exhibit). This is a marvelous and critical collection
which preserves our heritage.
news from the MTA is that they are taking over Nostrand Avenue with a
new Bus Lane, dividing one of the tightest and busiest streets in
the Boro, in half, and harrasing Brooklyn Residents for years to come.
All this is from an MTA that cancelled the Cortelyou Rd bus supposedly
because it didn't have enough money.
One of the worst aspects
of this Bus Zone will be the ability of the Bus Drivers create total
mahaim by controlling the lights through the Junction, one of the hardest
intersections in NY to travel through because of the blocking action
of the lights on the crossing over the Flatbush and Nostrand avenue
The biggestest Secret in NY is the Department of
Educations's phone number, which 311 doesn't have and which isn't listed
on their website. The number is 718-935-2000
From WNYC: Just how bad are they? MTA Chairman Dale Hemmerdinger earlier this
week predicted riders would be calling up their legislators later this
year, saying, "My God, I can't get to work on time!"
Brooklyn has always been where America is at home, small neighborhoods,
tight communities, and strong culture, a new element has sprung open on
our shores, one of hipsters, world acclaimed artists, craftsman, fashion
and youth. And as the world has flooded into our borough, few places
could have been better prepared to accept them. And while the industrial
brawn of this city has waned, new centers of craftsmanship, theater,
film, technology and commerce have found homes all across this borough.
In case you haven't heard, Brooklyn is now the place to be.
The flurry of activity in our burg has ripples all across the world
from the salons of Paris to the tech hubs of India. Brooklyn is going
through a historical transformation, such as the likes which the world
rarely witnesses. Come join Brooklyn-Living in the celebration this great
The Plan The City Needs to Save The MTA
The MTA can easily cut out the LIRR to
Grand Central Station program which will cost US 15.2 billion dollars,
and then use that money for its operations, and debt service. The choices
being presented to the City are false. We don't have to choose between
Tolls or service cuts and fare hikes. We can just spend less on massive
additional projects that the system doesn't need.
Instead of the Grand Central
LIRR program, we can save the 15.2 billion dollars, maintain service
and give LIRR riders free transfers at Atlantic Avenue to the subway,
while retaining the Pen station subway fare. Trains on the IRT can start
at Atlantic Avenue which has the subway capacity. That will encourage
riders to use the under utilized Brooklyn LIRR Terminal ending any need
for an LIRR extension and providing full service for everyone. Simple
enough? Not if you work for Bloomberg and want to use the MTA as a wedge
to get tolls on the Brooklyn Bridge.
Why this country can't come together: The
On November 6th, 2 days
after the election of Barack Obama as US President, a wave of hysterical
irrational emotionalism has swept through a good part of the country and
the media. The election has been considered historic, unprecidented,
the arc of history. It hasn't been any of these things. It has been
the victory of Democratic Machine politics over an extremely unpopular
Republican party which has utterly failed to communicate it's goals and
position since the Iraqi invasion
Wednesday, Nov. 5, 1980, my 10th-grade American history teacher started
class by unfurling The New York Times. She pointed to its triple banner
headline: Reagan Easily Beats Carter; Republicans Gain in Congress;
DaAmato and Dodd are Victors.
Save this paper, she told us. This is the start of a whole
And it was. An
era of unbridled deregulation, wealth-enhancing perks for the already
well-off, and miserly indifference to the poor and middle class; of the
recasting of greed as goodness, the equation of bellicose provincialism
with patriotism, the reframing of bigotry as small-town decency.
This is a flat out lie and its
demagoguery which not only ignore the facts but it also charts a path for
increasing domestic violence, the destruction of the current progress
in race relations, and leaves New York City vulnerable to a terrorist
Judith Warner is a lier.
Either that or she suffers from amnesia. Or maybe she is just too
young to remember. And she is not alone in this. Bill Moyer is
a likewise lier who simple says that anyone who disagrees with him
is evil. Being that he is a preacher, I guess one can expect such
The Reagan revolution
was not based on a racist impulse and the desire to squash the poor.
It was a response to 30 years of poverty programs in our urban centers
which inflamed race relations, jeopardized our economy which had
been crippled with a decade of stagflation and gas shortages, stop
government intervention which increasingly infringed on civil rights,
and protested a foreign policy which not only left America weak and
vulnerable, but offered no hope for the Eastern Block nations or the
third world for any future other than living under the boot of tyranny.
Brooklyn and New York City was
unlivable, but the white flight was called racist rather than the attempt
to escape the high taxes, impossible expenses and most of all the urban
warfare which our streets became. A white man walking on Pitkin Avenue
was assured 100% to be robbed, if not killed. And likewise, in response
blacks were unsafe in white working neighborhoods which were left behind
of mass exodus of the city and region.
Instead of piling uneducated minorities into housing projects,
putting them on food stamps and welfare, and praying that they won't stalk
the subway, or kill you in Times Square, a new and affective means of
addressing poverty and the economy, work programs were initiated, welfare
programs limited, and the economy was allowed to flourish. Add to that,
City crime was aggressively attacked, drug trafficking shut down from
Washington Heights to East New York and the economy of entrepreneurship
The result was a life
changing bull run on the economy for nearly 20 years from the mid-1980's
until just now. The reduction of crime caused neighborhood after
neighborhood to blossom as ghetto after ghetto had turned from death
traps to areas of opportunity. Nearly a full generation has now grown
up in our urban areas never experiencing a gun being pulled out on them
in a robbery attempt, or just because they were on the wrong side of the
color line. We have integrated now in ways the American left could never
have imagined, and not because of divisive poverty programs, but because
our government has come to view our population not as statistics, crime
statistics, poverty statistics, racial statistics, but instead come to
view up as free people with potential. That potential exists in every
one of us, whether you are Black, Hispanic, Baptist, Pakistani, Jewish,
or Korean. We all need to be able to live and grow in a safe streets,
and safe schools. We all have the right, regardless of our color or our
education for clean streets, a working subway, and a chance to better
That is the Conservative
Revolution of the 1980's. And it has been extraordinary in the breadth
and depth of its success. People find equal opportunity, and chances
to exploit our potential today everywhere. And perhaps the hysterical
liberals in the Democratic party should consider this: It was every
bit as likely for the first African American President to have come from
the Republican Party as from the Democratic Party In fact, it was
more likely as women and minorities have increasingly found high levels
of office under the Republican Banner. Who was the first Black Secretary
of State? A Republican. Who was the first Black women who was Secretary
of State? A Republican. Who was the first Women Governor of New Jersey?
A Republican. The Republican party has been a party of equal opportunity
as it was when Lincoln freed the slaves in 1865, and when it broke up
school segregation when Eisenhower appointed Earl Warren to the Supreme
Court and integrated the Armed Forces and sent the 101st Airbourne
division to integrate High Schools in Little Rock, Arkansas, or when
Ronald Reagan appointed the first women and a Black Man to the Supreme
Court, and separated the idea that poverty program and entitlements
were equal to a commitment toward equal opportunity and civil rights. Black
Republicans and Black
Conservatives deserve recognition for the vital roll they have
played in paving the way for increasing degree of racial and economic
equality of the world today. In fact, I dare say that without the
efforts of Republicans in spreading economic and political empowerment,
not entitlement, across all races and religions, then the Barack
Obama political machine would have been stopped and squashed by
that racist Democratic Daley machine which stomped out political
equality in Chicago for nearly a century. Or along with everything
the Liberals are forgetting should we also forget Harold Washington?
The Republican party hasn't
just talked Civil Rights, they have appointed and promoted minorities
proactively at every opportunity, putting women and minorities on the
national and local stage for over 100 years.
It is pathetic for the Obama
supporters to paint the Republican party with the brush of racism.
They have every reason to look to themselves for the lack of progress
that was made over thirty years. They're programs have been consistent
failures at pushing our society towards prosperity or integration.
On the other hand they have been very effective at building divisiveness,
and creating fear between the peoples which constitute the free citizens
of Brooklyn, New York and the Nation. Lets all pray that today's youth
don't have to relearn the violent lessons of previous years of racial
and poverty polics. Because God help us all if we are forced to relive
the 1970's of my youth.
Commentary on the
Bloomberg bid to overturn term limits
You could have known that the term limits wouldn't
survive even a single electoral round or through a single set
of incumbents. Bloomberg should not be allowed to run again,
regardless of anything else.
Frankly, any politician, regardless of his popularity,
needs to step aside after 8 years. Everyone has their faults and
biases. For a good Democracy to work, top leaders need to step
aside for the sole reason of letting someone else take the helm.
Over time politicians
wear out their ability to govern. They become repressive to their
dissenters. This was true of Guilliani, Koch, Teddy Roosevelt,
and even George Washington.
There is plenty in the Bloomberg record that can stand
a new voice. There was the Olympics and West side stadium plan, his
failure to finish the WTC, his comment that the Twin Towers was nothing
more than a sucking vacuum on NYC Real Estate prices for decades, the
smoking ban, the MTA strike which he egged on from the sidelines and
was completely nonconstructive, his retarded Congestion Tax the outer
boroughs scheme, and much more.
He's done some good and I have agreed with him at
times and disagreed with him at times but now is the time for him to
MOVE ON. The city needs to generate new leaders, and new voices.
Term limits must stick.