Well, it looks like Vito's kid will get a challenger even though Lincoln Restler decided to give it a miss. Just to be clear, Steve Levin is good on policy, but his continued refusal to face up to the corruption of his former boss, Vito Lopez, suggests he is unrepentant for Vito's corruption...or too scared to say anything. Bottom line is he was chief of staff for Vito and to me that implies he either knew what was going on or was merely a lame figurehead. Neither looks great. Yet Levin has done his best to ignore that connection in hopes people will forget.
I think he's better than his former boss by far. But I still cannot trust him as long as he doesn't face up to his past.
Here's the announcement from Levin's challenger:
WHO: Stephen Pierson, founder and director of a successful not-for-profit organization, will be a candidate for membership in the New York City Council from Brooklyn’s 33rd District. He will be competing against the four-year incumbent, Steve Levin.
WHAT: Stephen Pierson will announce his candidacy for City Council. He will highlight his own record of accomplishments and also target the problematic relationship between Steve Levin and disgraced former Democratic County leader Vito Lopez and the impact of that relationship on the 33rd Council District. Other speakers will include individuals familiar with Stephen Pierson’s record as well as individuals involved with the local communities included within the 33rd Council District.
WHEN: This Sunday, April 21, 3:00 PM
WHERE: Brooklyn Borough Hall
– Main steps next to the plaza.
Not much info in the press release and no hint who is backing Pierson. He is a Brooklyn community board member and has hired Brooklyn reform district leader Chris Owens for his campaign.
And just to be clear...so far I see no reason to endorse in this race.
It has been awhile since the Caucasus region has made major headlines. But now, with Chechnya and Dagestan being regions where the Boston Bomber suspects are being associated with, the region is back in the news. But it isn't the first time. Russia fought two fairly tough wars in the region awhile back, and a number of my Russian colleagues spent their military service there. Also, there was the war between Georgia and Russia in South Ossetia back in 2008 (a major effort on Russia's part to re-exert its somewhat faded superpower status).
Few Americans realize the history of this area as a major crossroads of history, ancient, medieval and modern.
Interestingly, Chechens are distancing themselves from the Boston Bombers, saying they are from Kyrgyzstan. However, their uncle does say that the family are ethnic Chechens. And it should be noted that from Stalin on there have been policies of majorly relocating ethnic minorities (particularly Chechens) around the Soviet Union then Russia and replacing them with ethnic Russians. So it is quite likely that they are ethnic Chechens from Kyrgyzstan.
But why is this area such a flash point? Some background below... read more »
Libraries are among the foundations of civilization. Whenever I got to any of our local libraries they are always in use despite inadequate facilities, often no AC in the summer, etc. NYC cuts libraries as fast as they can, it seems. To me there is something fundamentally wrong with a city that doesn't value its libraries. Seems at least one mayoral candidate agrees with me...
From Comptroller John Liu:
PRESS CONFERENCE: CITY COMPTROLLER JOHN C. LIU TO CRITICIZE UNDERFUNDING AND SELL-OFF OF NYC PUBLIC LIBRARIES TO PRIVATE REAL ESTATE DEVELOPERS
WHO - City Comptroller John C. Liu, Citizens Defending Public Libraries, Committee to Save the New York Public Library, Historic Districts Council
WHAT - Press Conference regarding the City Administration’s sell-off of public libraries to private real estate developers
WHEN - April 18 at noon
WHERE - The steps of City Hall
On Thursday, April 18th at noon on the steps of City Hall, New York City Comptroller John C. Liu will speak at a Citizens Defending Libraries press conference in protest of the sell-off of public libraries to private developers eager to build luxury condominiums and hotels on their sites.
Liu has decried the proposed sales that include in Manhattan the Mid-Manhattan and SIBL branches, and in Brooklyn the Downtown Brooklyn and Boerum Hill libraries. The Donnell library in Manhattan was closed in 2008 for sale to a developer who bought it for the site of a future luxury hotel. The sell-offs, which will result in shrinkage of the library system and assets owned by the public, include destruction of the famed research stacks of the 42nd Street library on Fifth Avenue behind the lions Patience and Fortitude.
My family switched to all wind through ConEd 10 years ago. I hope most of our readers have done this or are going to do it. It really makes a difference. Be part of the solution, not the problem. When coupled with a switch to compact fluorescent bulbs you wind up saving money, though the switch to clean energy alone (separate from switching to compact fluorescent bulbs) will cost you a few pennies a kWh per month more.
But in the long run it is worth it!
From Green America:
Just listen to one of our Green America members who already went solar through our partnership with Sungevity:
“I chose Sungevity because they had a lease option and offered the most stability in terms of company size, support, and number of installations, as well as customer satisfaction. Sungevity’s partnership with Green America added to my confidence that Sungevity is a trustworthy company. I was happy with the installation process because the paperwork was streamlined and the installers were prompt and tidy. When I had questions, there was always someone to give me clear answers. But, I LOVE my Sungevity because the on-peak bar on my electric bill usage chart is GONE! “ -Sungevity Customer, Silver Spring, MD
Join us this April in being powered by the sun. Go solar.
From NY1: New York City Comptroller John C. Liu sat down with Errol Louis to discuss The People's Budget, his proposal to revamp the City's budget process.