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Bill De Blasio’s New New York City

New York’s mayor-elect Bill de Blasio won on a strong progressive platform. We’ll look at New York and the inequality he’s vowed to take on.

Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio waves to supporters after he was elected the first Democratic mayor of New York City in 20 years in the Brooklyn borough of New York, Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2013.  (AP)

Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio waves to supporters after he was elected the first Democratic mayor of New York City in 20 years in the Brooklyn borough of New York, Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2013. (AP)

When Americans talk about inequality, minds go quickly to Wall Street in New York City and the lords of finance there.  Now, New York City has a newly-elected mayor who campaigned above all on knocking down inequality.  Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio won in a landslide as a no-apologies progressive.  He talked non-stop about a “tale of two cities,” rich and poor, and his determination to narrow the gap.  Three-term mayor Michael Bloomberg warns de Blasio may kill New York’s golden goose.  The whole country’s watching.  Up next On Point:  Where Mayor de Blasio takes New York, and maybe the country.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Chris Smith, contribution editor at New York Magazine. (@ChrisSmithNYMag)

Ellis Henican, columnist at New York Newsday. (@Henican)

Mitra Kalita, ideas editor at Quartz. (@mitrakalita)

From Tom’s Reading List

New York: The New Mayor’s Frenemies — “[De Blasio] rose from an obscure public office to handily defeat a better-known, more experienced front-runner in the Democratic mayoral primary and then won the general election by the biggest open-seat margin ever. All very impressive. The reward is four years of nonstop headaches that will make being mocked as a socialist by Joe Lhota seem like happy hour. There is no shortage of major problems on the horizon: a $2 billion city budget deficit, more than 100 municipal labor unions clamoring for raises, the need to maintain public safety while easing up on stop and frisk.”

Quartz: These 4 charts explain why Bill de Blasio won over New Yorkers — “While New York City rebounded from the recession faster and stronger than the rest of the state and country, a stubborn wealth gap persists. Granted, much of the city looks richer, cleaner, safer than 20 years ago before more moderate mayors took its helm. But there’s clear discontent over the concentration of that progress and those riches at the top of the income pyramid.”

New York Times: In New York City’s Sharp Left Turn, Questions of Just How Far — “[De Blasio] talked repeatedly of a gilded world capital rived by class divisions and inequality, where the children of the middle and working class struggle to find jobs and apartments. His vows to tax the rich in service of universal prekindergarten and to rein in police stop-and-frisk tactics that inflamed young black and Latino men became twin pillars of his campaign. Such talk worried some business leaders, who had grown accustomed to attentive treatment from Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. But in a post-Occupy Wall Street world, the mayor-elect’s message resonated with voters.”

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  • Wm_James_from_Missouri

    Does Mr. De Blasio have a “Plan B” ? People that have studied the relationship between cities and wealth have found that; as a city’s population doubles, its’ per-capita wages increase, relatively speaking, by 15%. Living like fish in a can, yuk ! What happens when people leave? Sunk cost aren’t everything !

    • Don_B1

      I don’t agree with everything he writes, but Richard Florida has a long track record of interesting and reasonably predictive work, published in academic and popular press. See:

      http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2013/10/the-boom-towns-and-ghost-towns-of-the-new-economy/309460/

      for some of his latest.

      When someone references Joseph Schumpeter as having a lot of relevance to specific conditions today (and maybe that was not his intention), it shows a lack of understanding of what a bit more fiscal stimulus could do to ameliorate the privation so many are undergoing today.

      And I think it would not hurt the main ideas he is putting forward for future growth of the economy.

  • Ed75

    I understand he spent time with the Sandanistas and in Russia, a real progressive in the current sense. He said that the greatest problem was wealth disparity, so I assume it will be higher taxes.

    Also: “New York City is the abortion capital of America — with higher abortion rates than almost anywhere else in the nation. But that’s not good enough for newly-elected Mayor Bill de Blasio, who wants more abortion clinics build and is pledging to employ taxpayer funds to do so.”

    One of his first statements is that he wants to close all pregnancy care centers (what harm are they doing?).

    “De Blasio calls crisis pregnancy centers ‘sham’ clinics. In his view, their refusal to perform abortions means they do not offer ‘legitimate health care.’ He has pledged to continue the city’s appeal of a court order striking down a law aimed at closing down such centers.”

    An abortionist. NYC is taking another step toward the darkness, how much farther can it go?

    (http://www.lifenews.com/2013/11/11/new-york-city-mayor-wants-more-abortion-clinics-will-use-tax-dollars-to-build-them/)

  • John Cedar

    He didn’t win on a progressive platform. He won because he is not a lesbian. Democrats will always vote for the other choice when faced with that choice.

    Albany better act quick to put the brakes on this guy or the city will implode and bring the state down further with it.

    • fun bobby

      Wasn’t he the guy who converted a lesbian? that’s pretty impressive I don’t care what your politics are

    • Ray in VT

      How could he have been elected? He’s a straight white guy. Surely a person so oppressed by the liberals couldn’t win in such a city?

      • jefe68

        This guys the worst of the right wingers.
        Waste of time. He just posts the the most outrageous BS and hopes something will stick.
        Witness his awful suicide statement on Veterans day.

        • Ray in VT

          That one was pretty bad. He’s standing pretty hard by the position that discriminating against people is a matter of liberty (or something). Yet more “principled” opposition to civil rights.

          • jefe68

            Iv’e read enough of this guys posts to see that his agenda is one of extremism and so far to the right that it would make BArry Goldwater blush.

      • John Cedar

        Cognitive dissonance. Libruls pretend to want to pass new laws to protect groups, because they themselves, are unable to control their own bigotry and feel a sense of atonement in passing the laws.

        Of course if their position was heartfelt then they would have passed such laws when they were in charge of “all three branches” and utilized executive orders as well.

        • Ray in VT

          The record is pretty clear that in the course of the civil rights movement it has been conservatives that have fought tooth and nail against the rights of minorities, but go ahead and believe otherwise if that makes you feel better.

        • Don_B1

          Your use of the term “cognitive dissonance” applies so much more to you and your ilk than to liberals.

          Certainly everyone has certain attitudes imprinted on their psyche early in life before they have any experience of the wider world. But those who unfortunately were so imprinted but have developed a progressive outlook are willing to recognize the need to protect the targets of such discrimination from those who wish to perpetrate such discrimination.

          Your snarky comments to the effect that such discrimination does not exist is highly likely to be just your inability to look more deeply into the issue, which is prima facie evidence of cognitive dissonance on your part.

          • John Cedar

            I never said such discrimination does not exist. I said it does not exist in employment to the extent that it needs a special law to address it, in light of the unintended consequences that come along with said law.

            There is nothing snarky about my comment either. I simply don’t believe that employers discriminate against homosexuals very often. All the snark comes from the holier than thou crowd on the other side of the issue.

            The more frequent victims, victims such as the eminently qualified Quinn, would not be protected from the homophobic misogynistic democratic voters, regardless of any new law.

            People are born with certain attitudes too. The tendencies to reject those who are different from the pack but also to protect victims are both innate and at odds with each other. And so I don’t take it personally that you and your librul chums attack me, as you cannot help your baser instincts.

          • Don_B1

            Really! !

            Your use of the word “librul,” and the sentences: “He didn’t win on a progressive platform. He won because he is not a lesbian.” pure snark.

            As for Christine Quinn’s campaign for the Office of Mayor, the real reasons for her dropping from the early lead was her history of supporting the Mayor Bloomberg’s successful attempt to have a third term, not her sexual orientation that lead to her defeat, plus a lackluster campaign that did not acknowledge the revulsion over “stop and frisk” and the aspirations of the 25% of New Yorkers in poverty for a path out of that condition.

          • John Cedar

            Oh that…
            My bad…
            I mistakenly thought you were referring to the comment that…you said you were referring too as snark.

            Hey, not that I don’t believe you…
            but do you have a quick source backing up your list of reason of why Quinn was rejected?

          • Don_B1

            There were a number of articles in The New York Times, The Atlantic (I think), New York magazine, etc., over the campaign period, but I did not keep a list and it would not be that quick considering my other commitments to get the list together.

            But if a search of those sources comes up dry for you, get back to me.

    • jimino

      Hey, I thought your fake persona was some sort of successful business owner, not a mentally-ill hate monger supporting, among other things, that our troubled returning troops kill themselves. Did you get confused about which website you were posting on?

  • Ed75

    I read the full article on De Blasio and abortion, if he implements it NYC will face a disaster, no doubt. He wants to use tax money to build more abortion clinics? He might as well hold the scalpel in his own hand.

    • Leonard Bast

      Didn’t the pope tell you to stop obsessing over abortion?

      • Ed75

        I didn’t get the memo.
        I am hoping for mass repentance, and so is he. Mercy is always available to the repentant. But not much time left, it’s getting outrageous.

        • TFRX

          This “not much time left”: Can you give us a straight ETA? Cos I don’t expect you to be on this page after that, one way or another.

          • keltcrusader

            THAT would be most excellent!

      • Daniel

        Simple answer: no. Guess you missed the statement he made the very next day restating that abortion is murder. Somehow NPR and the NYT didn’t bother picking up on it. Big surprise.

        • adks12020

          You’re both right. He said, despite the fact that the Catholic church is still against abortion he thinks that people are obsessing too much over singular issues like abortion and avoiding a broad view of the world based on Christian concepts.

    • jefe68

      Oy vay!

      • Ed75

        Exactly.

        • jefe68

          No, it’s about your religious zealotry, not De Blasio.

  • James

    De Blasio has a built in advantage. Wall Street isn’t going anywhere. Sure the big pockets can move to New Jersey or Long Island, but then they are looking at a longer commute and are removed from the action. He can soak the rich to his heart’s content.

  • Daniel

    Good luck with your decision NY. So glad I got out of there 16 years ago when things were still reasonably good. You elected an unabashed and unashamed socialist with communist sympathies. Have fun.
    “Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.” H.L. Mencken

    • TheAssassinBug

      And we are already getting it, good and hard, Daniel, thanks to the Plutocrats. Thanks, and please give us some more vaseline.

    • mozartman

      Where did you move to if I may ask? One of those superbly well managed southern states or even Texas?

      • Daniel

        How about Massachusetts, Wolfgang? It was in order to keep my job and maintain my seniority that I moved to this Democrat-run craphole and I wish every day that I lived in the superbly well-managed home state of my dear wife, Oklahoma, which is where we’ll be retiring eventually. And Massachusetts is almost as idiotically mismanaged as NYC, in case you’re curious.

        • jimino

          What’s “seniority”, some sort of worker protection fought for and won by a union or other collective bargaining unit? Do you expect a pension when you retire to your nirvana of Oklahoma?

          • Daniel

            It’s guaranteed, genius. I won’t have to rely on SS; I’m a railroad worker and we pay into our own retirement. I’m all set no matter where I decide to live. And naturally, you just assumed that I’m a Republican/tea party/anti-union/neocon, didn’t you? Guess again.

          • jimino

            Oh, so you’re actually an anti-government person whose entire life is benefited by federal government regulation and union-negotiated protections (as a railroader, you surely must acknowledge this) that provides significantly more protection than the market would. As far as the rest of your comment, I never said anything about your party affiliation, but you seem defensive about it.

        • mozartman

          Just wondering then – why isn’t everybody moving to OK? Lots of people move to NYC I heard and MA isn’t doing too shabbily either. Companies have a choice where they locate, so why does your employer not move to TX or OK where taxes are low, wages even lower and morals very high, or so they say. if I look up the ten richest states in the US, only one red one shows up – Alaska. And they get more federal spending than any other state per capita and have lots of oil. Spread that over a few people and you are bound to end up in the top ten. Virginia is purple on the way to blue. The rest are all solid blue states.
          I always wonder – if a state is so crappy, high tax, mismanaged and hopelessly blue, why do businesses stay there? Could it be quality of life? Good education? Lots of smart people?
          I was in MA and know Boston fairly well. Seems like a nice town. I also visited Dallas a few times and I would not want to be buried there – boooooring! Apart form the 6th floor museum there was almost nothing worth visiting.
          Don’t know OK, but if it looks like TX, I will skip it.

          • Don_B1

            There is a liberal blogger in Alaska who pointed out that Alaska was a big liberal state when admitted to the Union some 50 years ago and only turned “conservative” with the discovery of oil and gas that is being extracted by big fossil fuel companies, and much like the Middle east countries that are effectively plutocracies, the oil money is being used to buy the electorate with things like an annual $1,000 “rebate” on income taxes.

            The blogger indicates that her continued residence in Alaska is conditioned on her belief that Alaska will return to its roots and show that individual liberalism of its origins.

          • mozartman

            Good point – you vote for the hands that butter your bread. Always works. Most commodity states are plutocracies. The big exception is Norway which managed to amass a huge pension fund from their windfall for future generations. They are now arguably the richest country in the world on a per capita wealth basis if you disregard jokes like Kuwait where a few own almost all the wealth, but the average looks high. Alaska, with a much smaller population could have done the same, but they chose to hand out a few thousand bucks per family every year and have nothing to show for all their oil wealth which is higher than that of Norway since the latter have over 4 million people.
            Norway always kept their high taxes, has high gas prices and never let the wealth spoil them and distract from the long term goals. Americans for the most part are short term – gimmie my $1,000 bucks NOW. Who cares if I can get $10,000 a year from the state pension fund when I retire. That thinking pervades the entire society. Tax cuts NOW, even if that means failing schools, no healthcare and potholed streets. When the oil runs out, they will come hat in hand to the feds and beg for money.

          • Don_B1

            Exactly!

            When extraction industries enter a poor country, they can easily buy their way into power, which is much harder in a strongly democratic country, like Norway.

            But even in Norway, the oil industry has been all too effective in keeping it from supporting strong cuts in the use of fossil fuels to mitigate Climate Change.

            See:

            http://sciencenordic.com/economists-call-norways-climate-policy-hypocritical

            and

            http://www.newsinenglish.no/2011/11/04/norway-backsliding-on-climate-issues/

            Closer to home, it will be interesting to see how much influence the oil and gas industries get in North Dakota, where it is now one of the biggest (and most coordinated) industries, along with agriculture; the two will have an interesting war.

    • art525

      I have lived in NYC for 30 years. I love it here. I have to say while I still love the place I liked it better years ago before it became sooo chic. I live in Park Slope about a block and a half away from that evil socialist communist. He lives in a very nondescript house, not a mansion like our departing emperor. I run Mr DeBlasio in the coffee shop and the pizzeria and he’s actually a nice friendly guy. And very unpretentious. I saw him and wished him success about 5 PM on Election Day as he walked down his street with a couple of aides. He thanked me. Obviously he’s just really good at hiding his evil intent. And yes I am having fun. Thank you for your good wishes.

      • jefe68

        Don’t you know that all the best villains are so personable that they can hide their evil intent. Like Obama he has an evil socialist plan to take over New York and then America! Be scared, be very very scared…

        So goes the right wing nut diatribes about anyone 2 degrees left of Nixon.

        By the way speaking of Russia, the Koch brothers father helped Stalin to develop oil fields in the 20′s and 30′s.

      • Daniel

        You’re quite welcome! I do hope you get it good and hard as you’re bowing to the god “equality” while being brought down to the lowest common denominator by your crusading new mayor. Then again, you fools endured 12 years of the petty tyrant Bloomberg so you’re used to being told what to do by a … mayor.

  • jefe68

    The right wing is proving yet again how ridiculous they are by posting fear mongering and even going as afar as bringing up 1950′s communism accusations. How nostalgic. I’ll be waiting for the fascist memes.

    As to the wealthy leaving New York, hard to see that happening with all the money tied up in real estate. New York is still the center of commerce and culture, food and whole lot else.
    But that will change if people cannot find affordable housing.
    Personally the city is already been ruined by the billionaire real estate developers. Latest fiasco is on 57th street between 8th and 9th.

    • tbphkm33

      Fear mongering, propaganda and brainwashing are the hallmarks of the Teabaggers and Nopublican’s.

  • toc1234

    Dinkins has to be thrilled that he now has a good chance of moving down on the list of Worst NYC Mayors of all time.

    • jefe68

      There it is. The right wing meme about nothing and offering nothing.

      • Daniel

        It’s not a meme. I was there during the Dinkins years and NYC was a nightmare. If you were intellectually curious enough, you could look up the crime stats from those years and see how bad it was. You left-wing maniacs are such sad, pathetically delusional people.

        • Don_B1

          Actually, the crime stats of that period show decreasing rates of crime, but the unfortunate incident in Brooklyn Heights overwhelmed a calm look at the progress that was underway.

          Then the Giuliani administration adopted some flashy, press-attention-grabbing policies that they ascribed further crime reduction too, and the case was “settled.”

          While crime that affected the wealthier residents was diminished by those press-grabbers, it did not diminish as much in the poorer sections of the city, and not that much was done to improve life there.

    • art525

      So even though DeBlasio is months away from becoming mayor he has already failed at the job huh? I wonder if you know that Giuliani’s ratings were terrible on September 10th 2001. We couldn’t wait to get rid of the guy. 911 saved his image. Here’s an interesting article from yesterday’s Daily News.

      http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/hamill-giuliani-support-backfired-lhota-article-1.1512137

    • TFRX

      Sorry, couldn’t hear your argument over the cops’ batons beating rhythmically on black professionals’ heads in the name of keeping Manhattan safe whilst white folk like me praise Saint Rudy 9iu11ani and Bernie Kerik.

      • toc1234

        we’ll see how the crime rates look in a couple years…

  • alsordi

    The Wall Street cabal should actually be relieved. Given what they’ve been getting away with, if not DeBlasio to stem their excesses, it would eventually be a dude named Guevara.

  • TheAssassinBug

    A part of the answer would be to get rid of private schools. Until the “elite” take an interest in the education of their underlings, we’re doomed. Unfortunately, I can’t think of a way to do this within our system of government. Richard from Framingham

    • Fiscally_Responsible

      Do you mean like the private schools that President Obama, the Kennedys, Bill “I did not have sex with that woman Monica Lewinsky” Clinton, and other liberals send their children to and support with their wallets while speaking out of the other side of their mouth about public education?

      • TheAssassinBug

        That’s exactly what I mean, Einstein. Read it again until you understand it.

        • Fiscally_Responsible

          I just wanted to make sure that you were aware of the hypocrisy of many liberals who foist a broken public school system upon us while sending their own children to elitist private schools.

          • TheAssassinBug

            Duh.

          • art525

            The conversation here is about Bill DeBlasio and his kids are public school kids.

          • Don_B1

            Liberals are not trying to “foist a broken public school system upon us.”

            They are trying to fix the public school system in an environment where the students come from extremely poor families which continually move from district to district, and often come to school in states near malnutrition.

            They also note that the “conservative fix” of charter schools or handing out vouchers, all to provide “school choice.”

            Over a decade of experience has shown little improvement, with every charter that performs above average there is at least one that performs under average. Also, many of the good performers have been able to achieve a student body with good homes, etc., whether by fortuitous circumstances or outright manipulation of the acceptance rules.

            Liberals do want to correct these problems, not push them “under the rug” as conservative “solutions” would do.

      • Don_B1

        The education of children of a president while he is in office is fraught with more issues (security!) than just selecting between private and public schools, as you should well know; but snark really appeals to “conservative” radicals when they don’t have a legitimate argument for their ideology.

    • Fiscally_Responsible

      I would be curious as to whether Diblasio believes that the warehouses where ineffective teachers sit all day doing nothing but reading the newspaper and collecting their salaries because the teachers union is too powerful and resists firing incompetent teachers should be shut down and the teachers fired? That would free up a lot of money to improve the schools. Or is it better to continue paying for this featherbedding and simply raise taxes?

      • TheAssassinBug

        Nice try at redirect, Einstein.

        • Fiscally_Responsible

          It is a real issue, supported by unions that brought us the Detroit Fiscal Fiasco. Oh I forgot, Detroit’s fiscal woes were George Bush’s fault!

          • TheAssassinBug

            But it’s not THIS issue. Meanwhile, you make my point for me. If the Plutocrats had a stake in public education, I guarantee you that the public school system would get a whole lot better, and pretty damn fast.

          • Ray in VT

            The incredible amount of over simplification on your part is both astounding and not surprising.

          • Don_B1

            It was not the unions that brought Detroit its problems.

            Detroit’s problems are hugely more complex, with the retreat of the middle class from the city to the suburbs and rural areas without any metropolitan taxation to distribute the costs of education and development in the city being the biggest of many.

          • art525

            I would argue that Detroit’s problems were the result of the AMerican car companies failure to respond to the competition from foriegn car companies in particular the Japanese. Detroit resisted responding to market demands for smaller more efficient and less expensive cars because they made more money per unit by selling great big gas guzzlers. The gas crisis sealed the deal when the masses shifted over to Toyota and Honda. And then in typical fashion once gas prices went down, not having learned their lesson Detroit put all their energy into big SUVs because once again they could make more money per unit. It was greed and a tin ear for what was wanted that brought down the American auto industry and with it Detroit. But it is much easier and more satisfying to blame unions.

          • TheAssassinBug

            THIS THREAD ISN’T ABOUT DETROIT, GEORGE BUSH, OR GAS PRICES. IT’S ABOUT QUALITY EDUCATION BEING AVAILABLE FOR ALL AMERICANS.

          • art525

            No actually this thread is about the election of Bill DeBlasio and what that means for NYC. What his plans are for education is one issue. ANd a big part of the issue of education is the debate on unions and how that affects education. So it is a relevant thing to repudiate unsubstantiated atacks on unions. I don’t think your snarky little sipes add a whole lot to the debate.

          • TheAssassinBug

            Well, artie, you are free to think whatever you like about my snarky little sipes (sic). I prefer to stay on topic in this thread, which was about giving everyone a stake in public education. I’m sure that you do think it’s relevant to talk about the unions in Detroit. In that case, say whatever you like–I was hoping to get informed rather than inflamed responses. I generally don’t make a habit of arguing about music with the tone deaf.

  • Fiscally_Responsible

    “A little more in taxes…” The typical liberal/progressive answer to every problem!

    • Enuff_of_this

      And an EBT card, accepted in more places than VISA or AmEx

    • art525

      It’s the “typical/ liberal progressive answer” to years of the typical right wing regressive tax cuts for the rich which widened the gap between the rich and poor to the most extreme gap since the Great Depression.

      • Enuff_of_this

        There will always be a gap, so get used to it. Last I checked, the dirt poor weren’t exactly spearheading the job creation boom.

        • jimino

          I hear Walmart and payday loan places are doing better than ever, so I’d say you’re wrong.

          • Enuff_of_this

            The poor only patronize them, not create them. Try again

          • jimino

            Re “job creation”, how many employees does it take to staff a store without customers?

          • Don_B1

            What is your definition of “create”?

            If the poor who patronize them did not, they just would not exist, so who had the idea of “creating” them would be irrelevant to this discussion.

          • Enuff_of_this

            The poor do not create jobs by assuming the risk involved in doing so.

          • Don_B1

            But their ability to purchase the goods and/or services changes the risk that the “entrepreneur” takes on.

            Keep on tryin’ but you won’t win as your view is unsupportable, especially in a low demand economy.

          • Don_B1

            Walmart apparently claimed that the cuts in food stamps (SNAP) will be good for it because the poor will go to its stores more for the lower prices it charges.

  • TFRX

    That’s hilarious, Tom. Are you just so reflexively Nice Polite Republican that you can’t even call a Republican loser a loser without playing Lhota’s attack ad?

    • nlpnt

      Lhota’s ad itself was hilarious. 5000 *more* cops in NYC? Where would he put them? Lower Manhattan already has more cops per square foot than the average Midwestern police station.

      • art525

        The other brilliant thing about Lhota’s ad is that it talked about how we would go back to the bad old days if we elected DeBlasio while showing video of the bikers attacking the SUV which happened under Bloomberg this year not in the bad old days.

        • TFRX

          Did you realize that one of those motorcyclists was an undercover cop? (His presence there had nothing to do with his being undercover for anything.)

          • art525

            Actually there were four undercover cops involved though only one has been charged so far.

          • TFRX

            Four? Geez, I guess I stopped reading after the first one.

  • Coastghost

    Universal pre-kindergarten: the means for fostering illiteracy and innumeracy prior to enrollment in primary education.

    • Ray in VT

      Nothing worse than education I guess.

      • Coastghost

        A poor education is always inferior to mere education.

        • Ray in VT

          Is that why you think that the Civil War had little to do with slavery? I guess that we can just assume that the education will be poor, despite ample evidence to the contrary, declare it to be a failure and move on.

          • Coastghost

            Right: public education is a raging success all across the country, the news is always so good on the public education beat that we don’t even hear the reports any longer. Why even bother reporting on the stark and universal success of public education?

          • Ray in VT

            It seems to work for many, although just because something doesn’t work great all of the time for everyone we probably should just give up on it. Do you know of another system that must accommodate all comers, be they poor or physically or developmentally disabled? I could do great things with a school if I got to cherrypick only the students that I want.

            Also, back to your original comment, how is pre-k “fostering illiteracy and innumeracy”? Studies show that it can be quite beneficial, but maybe South Carolina hasn’t figured out how to do that.

          • Coastghost

            Perhaps our schools would perform well if President Obama didn’t do his part to weaken their performance. Obama himself has supported in one of the state’s poorest counties voting restrictions that keep accountability out of the public school system. If citizens aren’t allowed to vote for school board members, “public schools” are public schools in name only and unworthy of public support.

          • Ray in VT

            Sounds like your problem is with your state’s system. Maybe you ought to just get your own house in order first before going out and blaming someone else.

          • Coastghost

            No, my problem clearly is with Federal meddling in policy it has no business participating in.

          • Ray in VT

            Yeah, they should have left the kids in that school district continue to get poor funding and go to a run down, leaky school. Getting kids a decent place to get an education is the sort of meddling that poor and minority communities don’t need.

          • Coastghost

            Local Democratic politicians are responsible for the run-down leaky school: with Obama’s direct assistance, they have helped insure poor infrastructure by exempting local school boards from the accountability that comes of electing board members.

          • jefe68

            Oh for the love of inanity.

          • Ray in VT

            Are they also to blame for those schools getting far less financial support than most schools that have a far higher proportion of white students? It looks like Dillon has an issue with lower household incomes. That probably has nothing to do with the poor condition of the schools. Just blame it on the Democrats and Obama and be done with it.

          • Coastghost

            The Democratic Party of Dillon County is exactly the outfit to thank and to blame: the DPDC has been running the local Democratic welfare plantation for over fifty years. If the Democrats of Dillon Co. had been enamored of public education, they’d've permitted school board elections decades ago, when the local economy was a tad more lively with tobacco and textile operations, both of which hardly exist today. Obama only propped up the corrupt county administration by giving it $35 million to play with, absent any substantive public oversight.

          • Ray in VT

            Got it. The Democrats are all to blame. I’m sure that things were pretty peachy for those schools with exclusively or predominantly minority populations way back when and that the state has always dealt equally and fairly with those schools that serve those students.

          • TFRX

            You forgot “separate but equal” as being a StatesRightsSolution(TM).

          • Ray in VT

            Yeah, how’d that one work out. Kick it out to the lab of the states and let them run with their experiment of how they’re going to secure the rights and liberties of a minority group. Worked just like they intended it to.

        • art525

          Can we quote you on this? What a clumsy sentence. Is it a comment on your education experience?

          • Coastghost

            Can’t imagine why a superior stylist would want to quote such obviously clumsy locution, but quote away if you like. (My remark above is indeed a comment on my experience with public education: I seem to’ve been a snob by age five, since I learned to read before entering first grade at age six, but I wasn’t permitted to graduate HS until after I’d turned seventeen.)

      • TheAssassinBug

        If we educate the poor, how can we rely on their need to clean our toilets for poverty wages?

    • AC

      anything we can do to stay viable is good:
      http://www.vice.com/read/chinas-taking-over-the-world-with-a-massive-genetic-engineering-program
      it’s still iffy, only increased chances not guaranteed outcomes, but while we’re denying education and debating the ethics, others will not have such worries and know what it really takes to be a strong, healthy country….

      • Coastghost

        “Attempting to maintain viability at any cost”, I submit, is to have embarked already on the wrong path.

        • AC

          i think it’s foolish to only value things as a hard dollars/cents problem. there are associated costs for long term consequences you are not counting as variables. & IF you do want to only consider the ‘present cost’, offer an alternative or something. i mean, what if we’re both wrong? 2 wrongs don’t make a right.
          i’m not sure i’m totally right worrying about not having early education, but for sure i know you’re wrong in not wanting it at all cuz it may cost you personally an extra dime…

          • Coastghost

            My lack of enthusiasm for universal pre-K offered under the auspices of the public education establishment has next to nothing to do with the costs: it has much more to do with relieving parents of parenting responsibilities (such as reading in the home) and giving children more time and room to enjoy less structured institutional engagement with life and the world.
            I’m also reserved concerning public education due to its overall poor performance (our drop-out rates and literacy rates show what a dismal failure it is nationally: if it doesn’t earn an F, it earns no more than a D).

          • Don_B1
  • toc1234

    de Blasio – we need more taxes bc gov’t is inefficient/dumb and we blow it all. basically democrat politicians are like 12 y/o’s with their allowance…

    • art525

      We need more taxes so that we can get back to where we were before right wing politicians cut taxes for the rich and caused the gutting of services including even the most basic ones. It was announced today by Bloomberg’s minions that they were firing 25 of 29 bridge painters, the guys who are out there repainting and preserving the bridges and checking them for rust and disrepair. The four they are keeping?….. all supervisors. All those who complain about taxes and government programs suddenly get exorcised when those programs and services are cut. A perfect example was the closing of the war memeorial in Washington D.C. Bunch of hypocrites. I would say the behavior of 12 year olds is best exemplified by wanting things but not wanting to pay for them.

    • Enuff_of_this

      A zero deduction, flat tax rate across the board is the only way to go.

      • Ray in VT

        So, depending upon what that number is, the high end earners would likely get a huge break while the lower end of the income scale would get huge increases. That sounds great.

  • TheAssassinBug

    Relying on noblesse oblige as a foundation of public policy hasn’t worked out so well.

  • Coastghost

    Positively astounding to hear Mitra Kalita assert (without any challenge whatsoever from Tom Ashbrook) that progressive paradise Boston is second only to progressive paradise NYC in terms of perceived economic and social inequality. Provincials like me are aghast that generations of progressive politics in the Northeast Corridor have yielded such disparity. Could it be that progressives as a political class are simply and perennially aloof and remote? Shades of the Flying Island of Laputa . . . .

  • M S

    de Blasio is a fake…he’s a neo-liberal…a mini-Soros.

  • tbphkm33

    New York City is a bellwether of the future U.S. political development. The U.S. has flirted too long with the socially and economically regressive policies of the Nopulican’s and Teabaggers. Either politics will start moving toward fair progressive ideals that embrace democracy or the U.S. will head down the road of open social strife.

    • jefe68

      I disagree. It’s New York. It’s not Texas and it’s not Iowa or California.

    • warryer

      How do you determine progressivism is fair while anything else leads to social strife?

      • jefe68

        The Republican agenda does even come close to being good for the majority of our nations population. There idea is to screw people, vets included.

        • warryer

          How do you determine what is good?

          • jefe68

            Well, one could start with a decent not-for-profit health care system that is based on the health of the nation and not the bottom line.

            Then we could improve wages, which for about 90% of the people in this nation have been flat or falling.
            How about affordable childcare for all working stiffs.

            It might be a good idea to have some real banking and Wall Street regulations. While we are at it lets bring back some good old fashion usury laws to credit card companies cannot gouge people at rates that make loan sharks shake their heads.

            Then we can work on getting our education system in order, starting with higher ed so people don’t have to spend 25 to 30 years paying off something that should be affordable or free.

            Oh and then we should work on making the environment better and energy use more efficient.

          • warryer

            That’s all well and good but, can you tell me WHY these things are good?

            Why is it good to have a healthcare based not on profit?

            Why is it good for people to have increasing wages?

            Why is it good to have banking regulations?

            etc…

          • jimino

            Because they all help accomplish this: form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure
            domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the
            general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and
            our posterity.

          • warryer

            I see nothing in here about “fairness” which is the progressive ideology.

          • jimino

            You asked about “good” not “fair”. What does the constitution say about the “free market”?

          • jefe68

            It’s good for business to have a healthy population. In terms of business if your employees are out sick a lot that cost you. General welfare, common good and all that.

            On the other questions, same answer.
            People are happier if they feel like they are part of the economy instead of cog in a wheel. Yu want an example of this, compare Costco to WallMart.

            Banking regulations? Look at history buddy. Do some leg work on your own. Use your gray-matter.

            The why? If you can’t see that a healthy well paid workforce is better for the nation in general instead of 1% making 40% of the wealth then I doubt any explanation I give will suffice. I think you’re playing a game here.

            Oh and see the answer below.

          • warryer

            I am not playing any game.

            I am asking you questions so you reveal your foundation.

            The Constitution does not gaurantee happiness rather the pursuit of happiness.

            The Constitution says nothing about banking regulations.

            The Constitution says nothing about a well paid work force.

            The Constitution is a governing document which grants us freedoms from within which we are to carve out some kind of existence. These things you propose supercede the Constitution.

          • jefe68

            Reveal my foundation? Are kidding me pal? All laws are based on the Constitution or they are not. If they are not they can be tested by the courts and be overturned if found to be un-Constitutional.

            The Glass-Stegall act was well within the Constitution region of law. As are a host of other laws that this nation is based on.

            We have labor and work safety laws that were unheard of when the Constitution was written. When the Constitution was written slavery was legal and women and children were property.

            I knew there was a libertarian behind the obtuse nature of your comments. Well, it’s not the 18th century anymore.
            The Constitution is not written on stone.
            The Constitution has been amended twenty seven times since the original 7 articles.

            By the way, I’m done with this.
            I dislike the idea of Libertarianism as it seems to unable to deal with the idea of trying to solve the problems of a modern society. It’s regressive to a fault.

          • Don_B1

            When one groups’ economic activities affect another group’s income, it is called an externality, which can be either positive or negative. As examples, someone building an expensive home next to yours can increase the value of your home, while someone building a coal-fired power plant next to your home will decrease its value not only because of its unsightliness but because of its emissions of arsenic and mercury, etc., which are likely to hurt your health. But zoning regulations are not in the Constitution, but are widely regarded as a good thing in people’s pursuit of happiness.

          • Don_B1

            Healthcare: 50 years ago the economist Kenneth Arrow showed that healthcare could not be delivered equitably by the “free Market,” but would require strong regulation by government:

            http://www.aeaweb.org/aer/top20/53.5.941-973.pdf

            He looked back on the issue here:

            http://protomag.com/assets/kenneth-arrow-health-care-market

            If you consider everyone getting decent healthcare and not suffering or dying from health problems, then nonprofit delivery is necessary but not sufficient.

            ———

            Wage growth: Economists have long determined that a small amount of inflation led to stable prices without the danger of a deflation spiral which creates a crisis in the economy, such as the short period of the financial crisis in the fall of 2008, part of the Great Recession (Dec, 2007 – Jun. 2009).

            So wage growth must take place just to keep up with inflation, but it also gives workers a feeling that they are making progress in their effort to improve their lives when that wage growth is a modest amount above inflation.

            ———–

            Banking regulation: Bankers are like all humans and will push the boundaries to find ways to enrich themselves. If their search has moved into big speculations, and they have built structures which involve a large part of a country’s economy (and the big investment banks were raking in almost 1/3 of all the profits generated in the U.S. economy in 2007), when those speculations fail as they are bound to as they get flimsier over time, then the country’s whole economy suffers a big hit, bringing disaster to innocent people (e.g., the financial crisis of 2008).

            I hope this abbreviated discussion gives you the needed insights and, if needed, the directions for further research.

            I will try to respond to more questions if you have them.

      • geraldfnord

        I don’t know about ‘fair’, but I do know that a population educated to notions of self-interest but living in a society in which property were too unevenly distributed—and not favourably toward them—will soon become a population that won’t long respect property rights at all.

        Longer:
        A large and at least moderately powerful middle class is the best insulation possible for the upper class: the middle classes have enough property to buy into the notion of property rights, and enough fear of being poor that they’ll accept many reasons why the poor deserve their lot. (‘Whew, they’re very different to my family and to me, so there’s no chance of our ending-up like them! What a relief.’)

      • jefe68

        History shows us that when a minority of people have over 40% of the wealth of a nation there will be civil strife. The French Revolution is one example. Although there was a massive crop failure in the years leading up to it. Possibly due to a huge volcanic eruption in Iceland.
        But the distribution of wealth was a huge factor.

        In the late 19th century in this country we had a lot of civic unrest due to great disparities of wealth. It was not called the Gilded age and the Robber Barron era for nothing.

        During the Great Depression there was a lot civic unrest as well as the rise of fascism in Europe.
        Ever hear of the Bonus Army of the 20′s?

        Progressives were, are trying to come up with a better way of dealing with the huge disparity of wealth distribution. Which translates to low wages for the workers and huge profits for the corporate interest. You can’t sustain this kind of economic equation without something breaking.

        • fun bobby

          unemployment rates seem a better predictor of revolution than income distribution.

  • geraldfnord

    I think it boils down to:

    We agree that the train needs to move, but need it _really_ crush so many kittens as it did so?

    Pure socialists are in danger of destroying the train; pure capitalists are in danger of deciding that it’s eminently right that kittens be crushed.

    • Don_B1

      But there really are not any socialists, not to mention pure socialists, in any political office today; it is only that they are to the left of the “free market capitalists” that they get called that because the word has a worn out defamatory history that it is used.

      • nj_v2

        Well, there’s Bernie, self-described as Scandinavian-style socialist, so there’s that. Standards of “purity,” i suspect, are highly malleable.

        • Don_B1

          True, I somehow forgot him and I shouldn’t have,

          But Sen. Sanders supports capitalism when properly regulated, which is probably less rigorous than the original socialists, although I have not studied his full policy proposals enough to guarantee that.

          • Enuff_of_this

            He also supports it when the campaign coffers are getting low

          • Ray in VT

            I’m pretty sure that he supports capitalism all of the time, just not the sort of unregulated, or lightly regulated, free for all that some would prefer.

          • Enuff_of_this

            He does have a preference towards the non-profit, tax-exempt sector of the economy

          • Ray in VT

            I think that he objects to, say, companies paying executives millions while, at the same time, trying to drop sick people from health plans, or to companies buying PO boxes in Bermuda so as to avoid paying taxes, but I don’t think that he was any problem with profit. If you have a particular quote in mind where he says that he has a preference for the non-profit or tax exempt sector, then please provide it, but that it not really the sense that I get from him.

          • Don_B1

            To my knowledge, only in areas like healthcare, which, as I indicated in posts to earlier threads, is not amenable to free market solutions if everyone is going to get decent care.

        • geraldfnord

          He’s more accurately a Social Democrat; doctrinaire socialist people (I am not one, but I read them) predictably vary between being willing to work with them and hating them more than they do capitalists.

      • geraldfnord

        As I boringly point out too many times ’round these parts, it’s a better adjective than noun, as that usage permits one to say, ‘David Koch is more socialist than was Ludwig von Mises, John Boehner is more socialist than von Mises, Barack Obama is more socialist than Boehner, Obama is less socialist than Warren who is less socialist than Sanders who is less socialist than most centrist European Social Democrats who are much less socialist than Vlad Lenin.’

        As I’ve also said too many times, your accurate assessment of our Overton Window means that there is no length-scale on the Left. Just as Nixon could claim to be less racist than Wallace even as the Southern Strategy was being implemented, most Republicans can credibly claim not to be as racist as the Aryan Nations and (though they’d never use the word) more socialist than the candidates of the ever-failing Libertarian Party because people have heard from those in living memory…but anyone to the left of John Boehner can be painted as a fire-breathing Socialist because we don’t have noticeable Communists or Socialists to which they would be compared.

        I wish Bernie had been on Fox News night after night pushing for single-payer health insurance, so their viewers might see an actually socialist plan against which to compare the A.C.A.’s capitalist-{friendly in the extreme} scheme.

        Your point about its being primarily defamatory rather than descriptive is apt; I really like the term ‘snarl word’ to describe a word used more to excite the Hate Gland than to describe or to explain. (The term ‘purr word’ is its opposite.)

        • Don_B1

          Thank you!

  • toc1234
    • TheAssassinBug

      This article is stuck behind a pay wall. :-)

      • toc1234

        odd, I was just reading it but now I agree its blocked.. anyway the title/subtitle:
        Bill de Blasio Should Ask Me About the Sandinistas -
        The New York mayoral candidate still fondly recalls a regime that I fled in terror for my life.

        • Don_B1

          But remember that the Sandinistas came about in response to an elite, wealthy class that ran the country for only their own benefit, much as the 1% that your comments support in this country today.

          If this country follows your recommendations, it will reap the whirlwind that you are sowing, and it will not be pretty for anyone.

          • geraldfnord

            No, revolt is inspired only by Satan, the First Revolutionist. Those in charge of society—at least until the revolt—are God’s deputised agents on Earth for Market-friendly values of ‘God’; your pointing to actions by the old rulers’ as leading to the revolt is just victim-blaming, because this is (as we all know!) a just world, so unless something bad were done to you by direct agents of Satan, it must be a just punishment for being bad…partial causal responsibility is evidently exactly equivalent to complete moral responsibility actions of Satan (also variously known as: the Socialists, the Feminists, the Patriarchy, the Gummint, the Jews, the Masons, the Bankers, the Jihadis, the Jesuits) aside.

            So saying that bad things were anything but the result of Pure Evil implies that the victim were entirely to blame..

            Sorry to go on for so long; caffeine and it’s a sore point…and living in our society as someone who’s known since early childhood that most of his relatives were murdered finds me repeatedly annoyed by instances of this evil trope

          • Don_B1

            You are in the running for honors in sarcasm with Ray in VT!

        • jimino

          Were you connected to the Somoza regime?

  • TFRX

    I don’t know that I’d say anyone is “rebounding by trying to be too interesting” after Mayor Bloomberg (paraphrasing Henican).

    That’s like saying anyone running for President after Taft is “too thin” by comparison.

  • TFRX

    Maybe caller Alex, at 49m, as an individual, simply couldn’t “make it here”*.

    Living in NYC is not for everybody, the same way that living in the Appalachias or farming in the upper prarie states isn’t for everyone.

    (*Yes, from that overrated song, “New York, New York”.)

    • Ray in VT

      My brother in law moved to NYC a little over a decade ago. He did some work in the theatre and played in a band, but it wasn’t steady enough to pay the bills. He’s worked in Manhattan for the past decade for some firm, and he and his wife just bought a place in Brooklyn. It maybe isn’t what he originally thought that he would do, but he seems happy to be living there.

      • TFRX

        Not to get all anecdotal on the subject, but the typical questions might be: Where did he move from, how old was he when he moved to NYC, and what kind of theater experience / musical training did he have?

        And has he worked at any theaters I’ve heard of?

        • Ray in VT

          He moved from rural Vermont after doing theater in high school and college (one or two courses short of a degree I think). He made some good money doing technical work (lighting, design, etc.) for smaller theaters (nothing on Broadway), but I think that maybe he expected to get in the door easier. At any rate, I don’t think that he was ultimately that happy doing the work, although he was good at it, and the lack of consistency of the work may have contributed to that.

          For a while he lived in some sketchy places, but it didn’t seem to phase him. I hear that his new place is pretty nice, and it is a good step up from the apartment that they did have, which was decent but small.

    • anamaria23

      I have one son living in NYC; another son lives in Brooklyn, each for around 6 years. They would not live anywhere else, fourth floor walkups be damned.
      Neither own a car. “Just down the street” for them is usually half a mile, but they walk everywhere. They both have really good jobs, but live simply in order to get by.
      Museums, parks, the rivers, hole in the wall restaurants with great food. Trains, ferries. Impromptu music. Diverse population.
      They may opt out however when the children come along.
      It will be interesting to see what changes will influence. them. They were okay with Bloomberg, but know that they probably could not afford to raise children there right now.

  • Bigtruck

    A City that can survive Giuliani can probably live through anything.

    • StilllHere

      New York thrived under Giuliani and his popularity there propelled him to the national stage.

      • Bigtruck

        Actually before 9-11 the city was in a bad way, very divided because of his policies. Its sad to say but the tragedy saved his mayor-ship. After that you are correct, he took this to the national stage but because he had nothing else to tout but 9-11 he was discovered by the nation for what he was and he was sent home.

      • art525

        Six days before September 11 a poll showed Guiliani’s ratings- 42% approve and 49% disapprove. We NYers couldn’t wait for him to be gone. Then he capitalized on the WTC attack. And as Joe Biden so aptly said – for Guiliani a sentence is a noun a verb and 911.

        • StilllHere

          Sounds like Obama now.
          Probably would have been able to get re-elected easily as NY Democrats at the time were paralyzed by corruption.
          Capitalize is subjective. I wouldn’t quote Biden on anything.

          • art525

            For us in New York Guiliani was incredible divisive. He riled up the cops into a kind of riot at a campaign appearance at City Hall when running for mayor. He oversaw such incidents as Diallo, and there is of course the phrase used by cops as they brutalized- “It’s Guiliani time”. He fired his police commisioner Bill Bratton after Bratton was put on the cover of TIme Magazine because he wanted to take all the credit for the CompStat and Broken WIndows policies started by Bratton and Jack Maple. And on a personal level he paraded artound his mistress while married and informed his wife that he wanted a divorce in a press conference. And yes Biden was rigth- Guiliani exploited 911 in the most crass repugnant way to advance his own personal agenda. Oh and then there was his hiring Kerik, his driver as his police commissioner. You know the guy who went to jail for corruption.

          • art525

            Oh and as far as capitalizing on 911, you do know that after leaving office he started Guiliani Partners, a security company that adivses companies on how to protect themselves and plays on his tole in 911. Of course he did place his emergency headquarters for addressing terrorist attacks in the World Trad Center- a brilliant moe as it had already been attacked in 1993. Oh and here’s some interesting stuff on Guiliani Partners from Wikipedia. Giuliani’s colleagues at Giuliani Partners have included Bernard Kerik, Giuliani’s former police commissioner, who was later accused of having ties to organized crime[4] and left the firm in 2004;[11] former FBI man D’Amuro, who admitted taking six non-evidentiary artifacts from Ground Zero as mementos, but against whom no action was taken by the FBI;[12] and Monseignor Alan Placa, a high school friend of Giuliani and a former Roman Catholic priest who was accused of sexually molesting numerous children and of covering up molestation in the church.[13] Giuliani Partners has stated that Giuliani “believes that Alan Placa has been unjustly accused,” and that the firm has no plans to dismiss him.[14]

      • fun bobby

        noun+verb+911= Giuliani

  • Adrian_from_RI

    Venezuela had Hugo Chávez as their savior. Now New York has mayor-elect Bill de Blasio as their savior. How lucky can you get?

    • Coastghost

      If a latter-day Huey Long is good enough for Venezuela, a latter-day Hugo Chavez must be good enough for NYC, id est. (In which case: keep an eye out for inflation.)

  • Financephil

    My Elivs, it is so painful to listen to this show. You had representatives from the Murdock press–the WSJ–a commentator from the Fox print media and you framed the entire issue with such skepticism and cynicism that it was just painful to listen to. No mention of the fact that the “wealthy” from Wall Street drove the global economy into the ground. I would ask two things. First, take the show today and any show where you have a representative from the Tea Party as a prominent speaker. Provide both shows to a journalism class at Harvard or Columbia or BU. Listen to the critiques you get back from journalism students. The failure to hold anyone to the far right of the political spectrum accountable for anything is appalling. The falling over backwards to stack the deck with right wing journalists on issues that are centric or centric left is even more appalling. Second, find one study that shows a correlation between resources spent on policing and crime. Or one that shows a correlation between the number of police in a community in crime. I think you might be very surprised. I also doubt that you will find any well thought out, well designed study that shows there a positive correlation between “stop and frisk” and a decrease in crime. In fact, I bet it is much more likely that you find that if you held all other factors constant, there would be a correlation between “stop and frisk” and an increase in crime. Rather than go into the issue at length I would refer anyone interested in the subject to Malcolm Gladwell’s discussion of the Three Strike law in California and its impact on crime in his latest book “David and Goliath”.

    • nj_v2

      Well, there’s the damn, liberal, socialist, left-wing, public radio for ya!

    • William

      The “far right” is not pumping 80 billion a month into Wall Street for years now while ignoring Main Street. That is the far left, Obama.

      • Don_B1

        Actually, that $80 billion is holding down long-term interest rates which helps rebuild the housing industry, the major driver in all non-balance-sheet recession recoveries since WWII.

        It does have the side effect of driving people with money looking for high returns and able to take risky positions out of the bond market, which does help drive the stock market up.

        But if the Tea/Republicans in Congress would provide a modicum of stimulus in needed infrastructure spending which would have strong financial returns in economic growth, the Fed would not need to be doing the current QE investments.

  • 12Gary2

    Tax the rich and spread the wealth.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Remember NYC in Ghostbusters II?

    David Dinkins redux?

    • fun bobby

      is the stay puft man getting cued up?

  • marygrav

    Bill DeBlasio here in Iowa City. We have a mayor and city council that is taxing the poor to finance the building plans of our local millionaire through a Ponzi Scheme called TIF or Tax Incremental Financing which promises to raise the value of property. And this is the rub. The only way to collect on this rise is to sell your property or pay higher real estate taxes. It is a loose loose for the property owner and a win win for the millionaire developer.

    The downtown area is being improved by sacrificing the neighborhoods and public transportation and affordable housing by stealing the Block Grant money intended for these. No money is left for the handicap or for the public school system.

    I want to see the City proper but to spend all the taxpayers money on 20 story skyscrapers in a mid-sized town is a bit much. But I guess if your head is full of air, you need a lot of room to float.

    • Enuff_of_this

      Vermont is also embracing the same scheme

    • geraldfnord

      Well, afflicting the afflicted to comfort the comfortable is a lot easier than the other way around…and we _do_ want government to be efficient, and what could be more so than swimming with the current rather than against it?

      Also, by helping rich people, we know we’re helping good, worthy, people, even as we give the suspect people the chance by showing how much they can be worth to the good, worthy, people…really, the poor should be _grateful_ to the worthy wealthy for the opportunity to show that their worth something*, too.

      *(and it’s scarcely necessary to express that as ‘worth something to the wealthy’ since that’s what’s usually meant)

  • jefe68

    Bill De Blasio won 73% of the vote out the 50 plus percent of New Yorkers who voted. The GOP candidate, Joe Lhota was no slouch either. He was former head of the Metropolitan Transit Authority as well as the deputy mayor under Rudolph Giuliani and was praised for steering the MTA through Super-storm Sandy.
    Lhota had 24% of the vote, which gives De Blaso what some would call a mandate on some level.

  • harverdphd

    Well, there you go, progressives; Hillary is already drafting her “good luck in your future endeavors” note to Liz Warren.

  • Don_B1

    Unless you are Black you are unlikely to be frisked. And that is the problem when something over 90% of those frisked are innocent traversers of the streets of NYC.

  • domnogin

    Making pre-school free will certainly help four-year-olds for the next twelve years, but also unburden their sometimes-single parents to let them work or shop or at least sleep a few hours undisturbed.

  • fun bobby

    I hope he does work to roll back the repressive police/surveillance state NYC has become. The only thing we have to fear is fear itself

  • Sy2502

    We’ll see if he follows in the footstep of Emperor Bloomberg and his delirium of omnipotence.

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Apr 18, 2014
This undated photo provided by NASA on April 2, 2014 shows Saturn's moon Enceladus. The "tiger stripes" are long fractures from which water vapor jets are emitted. Scientists have uncovered a vast ocean beneath the icy surface of the moon, they announced Thursday, April 3, 2014. Italian and American researchers made the discovery using Cassini, a NASA-European spacecraft still exploring Saturn and its rings 17 years after its launch from Cape Canaveral. (AP)

Oceans in Space. The new discovery on a moon of Saturn, and the possibility of life there.

 
Apr 18, 2014
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during a nationally televised question-and-answer session in Moscow on Thursday, April 17, 2014. President Vladimir Putin has urged an end to the blockade of Moldova’s separatist province of Trans-Dniester. Trans-Dniester, located in eastern part of Moldova on border with Ukraine, has run its own affairs without international recognition since a 1992 war. Russian troops are stationed there.  (AP)

Deadly clashes in Eastern Ukraine. A white supremacist rocks Kansas City. The Marathon bombing anniversary. And Bloomberg on guns. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
The Week In Seven Soundbites: April 18, 2014
Friday, Apr 18, 2014

Holy week with an unholy shooter. South Koreans scramble to save hundreds. Putin plays to the crowd in questioning. Seven days gave us seven sounds.

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Our Week In The Web: April 18, 2014
Friday, Apr 18, 2014

Space moon oceans, Gabriel García Márquez and the problems with depressing weeks in the news. Also: important / unnecessary infographics that help explain everyone’s favorite 1980′s power ballad.

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Some Tools And Tricks For College Financial Aid
Thursday, Apr 17, 2014

Some helpful links and tools for navigating FAFSA and other college financial aid tools.

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