Friday, January 31, 2014

Brooklyn GOP Wilson-Pakula to Hynes in 2005 at Center of Appeal of MURDER CONVICTION in 2003 killing

Member of GOP Executive Committee in the middle of it all  —  Body found at her house, while two key suspects/witnesses were “asleep” inside

Hynes thanked GOP Executive for her help in 2005 election  —  Didn’t prosecute her son for 2003 killing  —  Even though body was found on her property, her son was on probation for a similar beating of someone else, and her son had started out with same attorney and planning a common defense with one of those convicted of the killing 

In an article in today’s NY Times, reporter Vivian Yee writes that more than eight years after two young men were convicted of killing a Fairfield University student named Mark Fisher, a lawyer for one of the convicted men, John Giuca, is preparing to ask the new Brooklyn District Attorney, Kenneth P. Thompson, to move to overturn his client’s conviction. Mr. Giuca’s lawyer, Mark Bederow, said in an interview that he planned to cite what he called serious flaws in the trial and misconduct by prosecutors (See “Citing Misconduct, Lawyer Seeks Review of Conviction in ’03 Brooklyn Killing” by Vivian Yee, 1/30-1/31/14, NY Times/ Region []).

According to the Times piece, “Mr. Bederow also pointed to conflicts of interest involving the district attorney at the time, Charles J. Hynes, who last year lost a re-election bid to Mr. Thompson amid reports he had presided over a series of wrongful murder convictions and a pattern of prosecutorial misconduct in his office....  Mr. Bederow said there was “the appearance of a conflict of interest” in Mr. Hynes’s relationship with Mr. Cleary [originally a suspect in the case, who became a key witness for the prosecution] who was on probation in 2003 after assaulting a man and who had waived the customary immunity that witnesses receive before testifying before the grand jury in the Fisher case, leaving himself open to prosecution. ***  Facing a challenging Democratic primary in 2005, Mr. Hynes received help in the form of an endorsement from the Brooklyn Republican Party’s executive committee, of which Mr. Cleary’s mother, Susan Cleary, was a member, allowing him to run as a Republican in the general election if he lost the primary. His statement at the time thanked Ms. Cleary for her support.”

Another suspicious person turned key witness in the case was Angel Di Pietro, a classmate of the victim, who was alleged to have been “asleep” in the Cleary house when Fisher’s body was found outside on Cleary’s property. According to Times reporter Yee, “Even after the arrests [of the two men convicted of the crime], Mr. Fisher’s parents said publicly that they believed others in the group of young people...were involved in the murder. They later sued Ms. DiPietro, saying she had failed to keep [the victim, Mark] Fisher safe. The [parents’] lawsuit was dismissed in 2007. ***  In 2012, Mr. Hynes hired Ms. DiPietro as an assistant district attorney. Her father, James DiPietro, a prominent defense lawyer, has donated to Mr. Hynes several times, including $3,000 in 2012. When political opponents criticized Mr. Hynes for Ms. DiPietro’s hiring last year, he said through a spokesman that it was unrelated to the Fisher case.”

In addition to the above information, I have been informed by someone close to Mrs. Giuca, the mother of one of those convicted and appealing this decision, that her son had started out with the same attorney as, and was planning a common defense with, Mr. Cleary. At the time, Cleary was one of the early suspects in the investigation, only later did he became a key witness for DA Hynes.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Not so fast Congressman Grimm ! — I don't think this is over yet

Maybe, we all need to look a little further into Congressman Mike Grimm’s inexplicable rage at cable newsman Michael Scotto

Is Michael Grimm’s  Rotundagate scandal just a 24-hour news cycle event with a few day hangover for talk show jokes and media cartoons ?  —   Or is it actually the tip of an iceberg that is evidence of a much bigger scandal ?

Yesterday, Congressman Michael Grimm’s threatening NY 1 reporter Michael Scotto was all the news across the nation.  Needless to say, even I made a big deal of it right here on The Brooklyn Independent GOP Fountainhead blog. After about a day, actually almost coinciding with the lapse of the 24-hour news cycle, the national story of Michael Grimm's raging at Michael Scotto in the Capitol rotunda morphed into a great big national joke.

An image of Grimm as a big green Incredible Hulk-like helpless giant standing amid a destroyed Capitol building with a small black-suited man broken in half at his feet was the political cartoon in the New York Daily News – with two balloons to the green Hulk containing the quotes, “GRIMM SORRY” and “GRIMM BUY EVERYBODY LUNCH” ( See “Rep. Grimm apologizes to NY1 reporter Michael Scotto, schedules ...” William Bramhall, 1/29/14, New York Daily News []).

Also by now, there are many reports of Jon Stewart’s use of the Grimm-Scotto material as part of his show last night ( See e.g. “Jon Stewart says Michael Grimm Was Giving the ‘Traditional Staten Island Goodbye’ ” by Colin Campbell, 1/30/14, NY Observer/ Politicker []; with a link to The Daily Show with Jon Stewart’s Grimm humor). Among several really good laugh lines about Staten Island and our beloved  NY1, Stewart put it all in context with this: “... the guy threatening to hurl a New York 1 reporter off a balcony is not a thug in a Batman film but someone we elected to Congress.”

However, maybe it’s a little early for Grimm’s threatening the newsman story to be reduced to cartoons and the jokes, because there is still a Paul Harvey-style “Rest of the Story” that might be coming.  —   Why, it might be here already !

One of Michael Grimm’s former political opponents, Democrat Mark Murphy, has told the political news web site Talking Points Memo that steroid use is to blame for a history of enraged outbursts by Grimm, and Tuesday night’s incident with Michael Scotto in the rotunda was only the latest example of it (See “Ex-Rival Blames Grimm's 'Thug' Outbursts On Steroids” by Hunter Walker, 1/29/14, Talking Points Memo/ Muckraker []). According to Hunter Walker’s report on the TPM blog, “Mark Murphy, a Democrat who lost a House race against Grimm in 2012, spoke to TPM and said that while he has no direct evidence he believes that steroid use is responsible for multiple incidents where Grimm and a man he described as the congressman's "bodyguard" have lost their cool. *** ‘These guys are wrapped so tight from the steroids that they're on, it's insane,’ Murphy said.”  Murphy, is a real estate developer and the son of former Congressman John Murphy and took pains to reiterate, "I have no knowledge whether or not [Grimm and the bodyguard are] on steroids, but they just seem wound so tight it would seem that they are on something.”

The TPM post went on to say that they specifically sought a comment from Grimm and/or his staff, but that Grimm's office declined to comment, as follows: "Thank you for your solicitation for additional comment from Congressman Grimm. I am in receipt of your request," spokesman Nick Iacono wrote in an email to TPM. "The Congressman will not be giving any additional comments on this matter at this time."

In addition, both Murphy and TPM related much of their story to Marc Alvarez, reportedly a bodyguard to the congressman. TPM indicated that on Wednesday they attempted to call Marc Alvarez at his home, by calling a phone number believed to belong to him. A short time later, a man called back from that number and identified himself as Alvarez. His communication to TPM was terse, "Don't call my house again," he said before hanging up. After another attempted call by TPM, the same man said, “This is my house. You don't call my house. This is the second time. Call me again and I'm going to put in a harassment call. OK?"

Hunter Walker’s TPM article closed with this: “For his part, Murphy seemed convinced Tuesday's threats won’t be Grimm's last outburst. ‘He has a switch and that guy's going to snap. He really is,’ Murphy said."

The TPM post was picked up and echoed by other media outlets (See e.g. ““Michael Grimm Apologizes For Threats, But Are Steroids To Blame?” 1/29/14, Inquisitr []; “The real problem with dangerous goon Michael Grimm –  We shouldn't let people like him have badges and guns” by Alex Pareene, 1/30/14, Salon []; and several others).

The Salon post by Alex Pareene, mentioned above, opened with this background material prior to relating the observations and opinions of Mark Murphy: “New York Rep. Michael Grimm is an unstable, possibly dangerous goon. That much was obvious in the video in which he corners and threatens NY1 reporter Michael Scotto. His act may not have surprised readers of the New Yorker’s 2011 profile of Grimm, which describes the 1999 night that Grimm, brandishing a gun, terrorized a nightclub full of people in search of a man with whom he’d fought earlier. Grimm’s propensity for abusive language and ridiculous macho posturing was also well-known to New York and Washington reporters. ***  Grimm’s actions that night at the Caribbean Tropics nightclub in Queens would have likely put a regular citizen in jail for years. But Grimm was not a regular citizen: He was an FBI agent at the time, and thus, after an internal investigation, he received no punishment at all. (The NYPD has declined repeated requests to release public records related to the incident.)”

Obviously, all these articles are not dispositive of any of the issues raised therein. I would expect these matters to be revisited as more facts emerge about the congressman and any of those around him who might become involved in due course.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

How long are the Brooklyn and Staten Island County Republican Organizations going to put up with Michael Grimm, Grimm’s bad behavior and Grimm’s other longstanding problems ? Haven't things gone too far already ?

Here are just a few of today’s headlines:

“Rep. Michael Grimm rips reporter. Why so angry?” –  Christian Science       Monitor - by Peter Grier

“Rep. Michael Grimm apologizes for threats; reporter won't press                   charges” –  Los Angeles Times

“New York Congressman Threatens to Throw Reporter Off Balcony”  –           TIME - by Nate Rawlings

“New York Rep. Michael Grimm threatens reporter after being asked ...”          –  NY Daily News – by Adam Edelman

The stories about Michael Grimm since 2010 have consistently fit a pattern and it is not a good one  —   Are any of us surprised that he started out as a solid conservative Republican with strong Tea Party support and has turned into a hard-core RINO  “moderate” –  who routinely attacks the Tea Party and the likes of conservative Republican Ted Cruz ?

From the moment Michael Grimm stepped onto the local political stage, some time late in 2009, there has always been a cross-threaded feel about him, that got worse and worse as the fittings that made up the whole Grimm fix got tightened more and more.

Questions like  —   “Where did Mike Grimm come from ?” –  “Where’s he been and what’s he been doing all these years ? – and–   “Why is he here now?”  —   questions like that were always shoved aside by insiders associated with Guy Molinari and Mike Long. When somebody brought up this-that-or the-other detail that didn't fit the spit and polish narrative it was always pounded-down or pushed-back with the "It's just politics" defense or "It's the liberal media going after a Republican when the Democrats have done much worse and nobody mentions that" attack.

As time went on, we Republicans found out more and more about our Brooklyn and Staten Island congressman  —  little-by-little, drip-by-drip, story-after-story, fact-upon-fact —  as the truth has came out and continues to come out.

It doesn’t matter whether it’s Grimm's version of his Marine Corps service and military decorations, his undercover and other service in the FBI, his “history” of business successes and failures, his personal problems that have gotten into the public eye and/or his dealings in Washington D.C. as New York City’s only Republican congressman; everything that Michael Grimm does seems to have a questionable underside, an improbable explanation, and a bad aftertaste.

2014 can be a decent year for local conservative Republicans, but only if we make sure that the national trends carry over to the local races  —   a second-rate gubernatorial candidate and a terribly damaged congressional candidate would be likely to destroy any chance of that. Because of  that and generally important considerations of good government and good PR, the Richmond and Kings County Republican leaderships need to ask themselves this: “Do we want to go into the 2014 elections with an albatross around our necks or a monkey on our backs like Mike Grimm ?”  If anybody answers "Yes !" Then they need to tell us >>>  WHY ......

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

At Brooklyn Young Republican meeting Congressman Michael Grimm revealed too much about himself — what really matters to him — and what apparently doesn’t

Near the end of the Q & A session at the Brooklyn Young Republican Club on Sunday, Mike Grimm revealed his greatest fear about what’s going on in Washington   —   “...[somebody] digging their heels in and shutting down the government...”  —   And then the worst thing in the world for Grimm   —   His  “money dries up....”

In a rare moment of nearly pure truth, the Brooklyn and Staten Island Republican’s words betrayed one of his hidden fears. He indicated that he is terrified that there might be another government shutdown before the 2014 election.  First, he mentioned that shutdowns poll badly for Republicans, but that ain’t the worst of it.  What really scares Congressman Grimm is that his FUND RAISING, even from his best and strongest Republican supporters, WILL DRY UP. Based on that and everything else he said to various people gathered in and around last Sunday’s meeting of the Brooklyn Young Republican Club, Grimm thinks that for practical reasons the Republican majority in the House can do nothing to stop Obamacare, deal with the debt and the debt ceiling, and/or effectively pursue various investigations.

The worst of it is preserved on video.  At about the four minute mark (4:00 subscript on video) into “– Part 2” of the video posted on You Tube by the Brooklyn Young Republican Club on 1/26/14, Republican-Conservative Congressman Michael Grimm makes it clear that “...unfortunately [THEY*] win when [WE**] shut down the government....  All the polling shows that....” (See “Brooklyn Young Republican Club Welcomes Congressman Michael Grimm - Pt. 2 ” posted by Brooklyn Young Republican Club, 1/26/14, published on YouTube [] at 4:00 mark on video). [ * & ** :   the actual quote in the video recording says “...they win when they shut down the government...” with the context clearly indicating that “they” meant Democrats or the Obama Administration, but then the syntax makes little to no sense.  Besides, prior to making his recorded remarks, when Mr. Grimm had a brief confrontation with some non-supportive Republicans by the bar in Ceol — while being questioned concerning his support of or opposition to a conservative Republican agenda in the House, he was clear that he thought it was Tea Party Republicans that had dug in their heals and shut down the government.]

It was after mentioning who he thought “wins,” when and if there is a government shutdown, that Grimm made his gaff, which showed everybody  what it all really means to him personally   —   “Money dries up. I had some of my best, strongest Republican friends call me...”  AND TELL ME, “Turn the government back on, turn the government back on....” (@4:15 mark on video).

That was Mike Grimm’s “SHOW ME THE MONEY” moment.

About a half hour earlier, the Congressman had a short debate about his support or non-support of certain conservative initiatives in the House. At that time, he didn’t directly address the questions put to him, but instead Grimm went through a well-rehearsed  litany of  “moderate Republican” talking points: “...we only control one-half of one-third of the government...”; we tried digging our heels in, shut down the government and got killed in the polls”; “I’m there on the front lines in Washington...”  and [paraphrase >>>  ...I think I know what I’m doing and it is nothing like what you think or what you’ve done in politics.....]

Maybe the congressman is right.  After all, who among us has had our fund raising dry up because of the shut down, how many of us had some of our best and strongest Republican friends call and tell us “Turn the government back on, turn the government back on....”

Unfortunately, it looks like all of that has caused the congressman to confuse his campaign funding “Bottom Line” with what he calls the “Front Lines” in Washington, D.C.

It also puts many of the good things that Michael Grimm had to say on Sunday into serious doubt. Things like standing in front of the Brooklyn Young Republican Club gives Congressman Grimm “...some sense of what [he] had when he was in the Marines...”;  or like when Grimm said, “I care more about this country than I do about politics, much more....  The truth is I don’t care about political victory....”

Well, now we know something about what Congressman Michael Grimm really does care about  —  “The money dries up....” and  “... some of my best, strongest Republican friends call me...”

Monday, January 27, 2014

On a cold Sunday afternoon in Downtown Brooklyn, Congressman Michael Grimm made his appearance at the January meeting of The Brooklyn Young Republican Club

A warmed-up Grimm tells a rather cooled-down group of GOP “youngsters” that he is likely to face a very well-funded and determined Democratic opponent in 2014

Moments earlier, Grimm and his “body man” Marc Alvarez  made quick work of a rump group of GOP naysayers without any blood or even an adult beverage being spilled on the Ceol bar 

There was a little dispute as to whether Grimm and his entourage were basically on time or late at about 4:15 PM,  as they made their way from the bar area of Ceol on Smith Street and into the pro tempore “inner sanctum” of the Brooklyn Young Republican Club by the fireplace at the rear of the Downtown Brooklyn pub. Nonetheless, the club members seemed content that the Staten Island and Southwest Brooklyn Republican Congressman showed-up at all. There had been some buzz that Mr. Grimm might be a last minute scratch, but staffer Clorinda Annarummo was on hand to assure the BYRC officers and others that the Congressman would be there after only a slight delay.

After Wave F. Chan, of Manhattan, had helped keep the meeting on its toes for over an hour with a series of proposals to show how the GOP in NYC is there to help “empower” the diverse mix of groups in NYC, Congressman Grimm arrived to a warm, though not boisterously enthusiastic, reception. Immediately, President of the Club Glenn Nocera made the presentation of a personal gift for one of the Congressman’s offices a road sign that said, “Grimm Rd.”  The Congressman seemed relieved and truly thankful that he wasn’t getting more of a peppering of the sort he had to endure getting passed the middle of bar area out front, where he had left his personal escort, Mr. Alvarez, fully engaged with a few people who clearly weren’t among Grimm’s strongest supporters at the event  —  and after only a few critical moments, certainly not fans of the Alvarez approach to dealing with incendiary situations ( then again, his background in pyrotechnics might have been limited to figuring them out only after they had gone off).

The Young Republicans and Tea Party members who had first spoken to Grimm at the Ceol Irish Pub were able to have a brief chin-wag with the Congressman, wherein Mr. Grimm was able to clearly assert that he is the only one out of everybody in Brooklyn, Staten Island and the city as a whole that is “on the front line” in Washington fighting against the Democrats, with Republicans now “controlling only one half of one third of the government.”  Furthermore, he wasn’t about to concede that anybody else might do a better job than he was doing, because he “had given [his] life” for this country.  To which some old fool had the temerity to ask  —  “Then, how is it that I can I see you standing there in front of me ?”

Mr. Alvarez then helped the Congressman express his regrets that the rump-meeting at the bar had to give way to the planned engagement in the back room. Both men departed, but Alvarez came back alone to discuss whether the older gentleman’s choice of anatomical body parts was appropriately addressed to him, although he didn’t seem to care that anybody had clearly referred to the Congressman with the same exact terminology. There was a little more friendly banter, and the older man excused himself and went into the back room to listen to the Congressman, while two or three others continued to talk to Mr. Alvarez a little longer.

Everything else that happened in the house was quite boring, because the usually spirited Q&A at BYRC meetings had a wet blanket thrown over it in advance of this Sunday’s get together with the Congressman.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Did Mayor de Blasio tip his “Chicago-style” hand with the “City’s” response to the most recent snow storm and is he now our own local over-sized Obama “Mini-me”

It turns out that in the second snow storm of the de Blasio regime  — many Republican areas that voted for Joe Lhota last November 2013 got less snow removal in January 2014   

When confronted with questions about shortcomings of the City's recent snow removal efforts, de Blasio sounded very Obama-like 

Hmmm !  —   Chicago-style allocation of city services, followed by Obama-style shucking of responsibility  —   Is that the emerging look of the de Blasio mayoral regime ?

Maybe it’s only “Second Snowstorm-gate” and not Benghazi or the Obama Administration’s IRS targeting of Republican groups and activists or the NSA intrusions into our cellphones and PCs. However, if you look at a print version of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s evasive answers to press inquiries about one of the problematic aspects of the most recent snow removal, you would see quotes that look a lot like what we’ve gotten from candidate-Senator and then President Obama for more than six or seven years and more recently former Secretary of State and expected presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Just look a de Blasio in his own words; here’s a good place to start:

“... ‘They’re just wrong,’ he said of the political payback theory. ‘And I’ve said that immediately and I’ll keep saying it. The orders were given; the execution was not what it should have been. And when I saw it with my own eyes, I was thoroughly dissatisfied and I gave new orders and clear orders to beef up the efforts.’ *** ‘I appreciate the question. I’m not here to speculate,’ he later offered when asked for specifics. ‘Whatever it was, obviously, again, it wasn’t up to snuff and we’ve got to figure it out. But we do know this much: The equipment was available, the personnel was available, the orders were given. So now we have to figure out what went wrong.’...”  (See “De Blasio Also ‘Concerned’ About Staten Island Snow-Response” by Colin Campbell, 1/24/14, NY Observer/ Politicker []).

Well, at least de Blasio didn’t say, “WHAT DIFFERENCE DOES IT MAKE !”  –  and he didn’t refer it all to Eric Holder’s DOJ for an investigation (of course de Blasio doesn’t have the authority to do that).

Other than having voted for Joe Lhota instead of Bill de Blasio, what do certain parts of Manhattan’s Upper East Side and large swaths of Staten Island have in common  —  well, now they can add sub-standard snow removal to the very short list.

Let’s see how Mayor Bill does on his follow-up to his get away line: “So now we have to figure out what went wrong....”

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Does the NY Times Article about the arrest and charges against conservative media leader Dinesh D’Souza contain signals about a problematic prosecution being pushed by Obama’s DOJ ?

Two items in the Times' piece suggest things aren’t alright with the investigation and prosecution of D'Souza

Is there a legitimate reason to make a “Federal Case” out of Dinesh D’Souza’s alleged unlawful donations to Republican-Conservative Wendy Long ? 

This rather mundane NY Times article about the D’Souza case starts out rather routinely, like this: “Dinesh D’Souza, a best-selling conservative author and filmmaker, was indicted on Thursday on charges that he used straw donors to illegally donate to a 2012 Senate campaign. ***  Mr. D’Souza is an outspoken political commentator who directed ‘2016: Obama’s America,’ a scathing anti-Obama documentary released in the final months of the president’s re-election campaign. ***  Federal prosecutors in Manhattan said that Mr. D’Souza encouraged others to give $20,000 to a Senate candidate and reimbursed them for the donations. Election law prohibits such arrangements and caps donations at $5,000 per donor to any one candidate.” (See “Dinesh D’Souza Is Charged With Using Straw Donors” by Matt Appuzzojan, 1/23/14, NY Times []).

Based on a rather simple investigation of its own, the Times concluded that, even though the name of the Senate candidate was not given in the indictment, D’Souza had donated to only one federal candidate in 2012, giving $5,000 to Wendy Long, a New York Republican who lost her challenge to Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand, a Democrat; and doubtless the donations were to the Wendy Long campaign. later in the piece, there is an apparent confirmation of that by remarks made by Mr. D'Souza's attorney.

The first indication that the Times might be somewhat skeptical about the handling of this case is this: “It is not clear from the court documents what led investigators to Mr. D’Souza in a fund-raising case involving relatively small donations, in a race that ended in a blowout win for Ms. Gillibrand. Ms. Long raised about $785,000 in the race.”

The second indicator of the possible suspicion of DOJ motives at the Times is the finish to Times reporter Matt Appuzzojan’s article, which implicitly demonstrates some degree of affinity with the sentiments of the charged defendant: “We are now living in the America that we warned our fellow citizens could come to pass if President Obama were re-elected,” [D’Souza] wrote on his website.”

Friday, January 24, 2014

With “Bad News” seemingly the Only News for Congressman Grimm lately — Mike Grimm is scheduled to be the >>Showcased Speaker << at the Brooklyn Young Republican Club’s meeting on Sunday

In their own words: “The Brooklyn Young Republican Club will be holding [its] quarterly meeting on Sunday, January 26th from 3:00 P.M. [to] 5:00 P.M.  —  With Special Guest Speaker Congressman Michael Grimm  —  At Brooklyn’s very own Ceol Irish Pub.”

Lately, most of the news coverage for Congressman Michael Grimm has not been the greatest. An article in the Bensonhurst Bean blog by Ned Berke is illustrative of what Grimm has been up against (See “More Bad News For Congressman Michael Grimm” by Ned Berke, 1/23/14, Bensonhurst Bean []).

According to Ned Berke’s post, Grimm made it into the news early in the Chris Christie “Bridgegate” debacle, calling the governor an example of “true leadership” —   then, the Christie story mushroomed with many additional allegations. Next, Grimm was admonished by the Federal Election Commission for accepting campaign contributions that were in excess of the legal limits. That was followed by his very close friend and fund raiser Diana Durand’s getting arrested by the FBI for violating federal campaign laws, allegedly funneling contributions to Grimm and another congressman through shadow donors.

The Berke article went on to state that more recently, a video surfaced on Israeli TV and cable showing Grimm heaping praise on Rabbi Yoshiyahu Pinto, an alleged key player at the center of the pending federal investigation aimed at various aspects of Grimm’s fund raising.  The video clip is a bad visual for Grimm, since the FBI’s investigation into his fund raising is based upon an accusation that then candidate Grimm took bundled illegal donations for the 2010 elections from members of Rabbi Pinto’s congregation. (Earlier in the investigation, Ofer Biton, an associate of Rabbi Pinto’s, who helped raise more than $500,000 for Grimm, had pleaded guilty to visa fraud and it was claimed that Biton sought help from Grimm to get a green card).

All of that seems to have led to yet another negative Grimm headline this week, when Frank Morano, a Staten Island radio host, activist and Member of Community Board 3, called on the Bar to reprimand the congressman, who is an attorney, possibly including having Grimm disbarred (See “Staten Island activist calls for bar association to reprimand Grimm, an attorney” by Tom Wrobleski, 1/21/14, []). Wrobleski made the following observation before giving the Congressman’s response: “Grimm, who frequently blames the negative publicity on perceived political bias in the media and rivals, had harsh words for his critic. *** ‘I have no interest in commenting on the ravings of an individual who has a history of making false and outlandish accusations against me. It is beneath any publication to waste the ink in printing a story about these absurd activities of zero credibility and dubious motivation,’ he told SILive.”

That gives most of the backdrop to the planned appearance of Congressman Grimm at the Brooklyn Young Republican Club at its Sunday meeting in the back room at the Ceol Irish Pub on Smith Street downtown in the Boerum Hill-Gowanus area of Brooklyn. Another part of the tattered scrim to the Grimm showcase is that BYRC meetings at the Smith Street venue have been very interesting lately, often with boisterous questioning of speakers and the occasional visit by officers and members of the “other” “official” club, the Brooklyn Young Republicans. Such a visit by the BYRs this Sunday would not be surprising.

In any case, Young Republican Club President Glenn Nocera has extracted promises of good behavior from most of the attendees that have been involved in some of the more exciting moments in the recent past. So mark it down on your bullet-proof white boards:

The Brooklyn Young Republican Club — Quarterly Meeting
Sunday, January 26th from 3:00 P.M. – 5:00 P.M.
Special Guest Speaker: Congressman Michael Grimm
At Brooklyn’s very own Ceol Irish Pub.

Ceol Irish Pub is located at:
191 Smith St. Brooklyn, NY 11201 (at Warren St.) Phone: (347) 643-9911…
[By subway:  Take “F” or “G” trains to the Bergen Street Station, Brooklyn]

Mayor De Blasio chimes in — Defends Gov. Cuomo on ‘Extreme Conservatives’ Controversy — Attacks those on the wrong side of New York values

Mayor Bill de Blasio is completely OK with Governor Andrew Cuomo’s controversial remarks that “extreme” conservatives –  those who are politically active pro-lifers, publically seek to protect the exercise of second amendment rights, or are politically supportive of traditional marriage – “have no place in the state of New York.” 

American-style democracy is threatened in New York by Left-wing ideologues now in power at the top  —   The democratic rights of most conservatives and conservative Republicans is now directly under attack by New York’s two highest elected officials of the so-called “Democratic Party”  —   Democratic rights of all threatened

According to a post in the Politicker blog yesterday, “Mayor Bill de Blasio today defended Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who has come under endless criticism from conservative pundits after telling a local radio station that “extreme conservatives, who are right-to-life, pro-assault weapon, anti-gay … have no place in the state of New York.” (See “Mayor de Blasio Defends Gov. Cuomo on ‘Extreme Conservatives’ Controversy” by Jill Colvin, 1/23/14, NY Observer/ Politicker []). According to a transcript provided by the mayor’s office to Politicker, after giving remarks to the U.S. Conference of Mayors in Washington, D.C  this morning, deBlasio said that he shared the governor’s sentiments as follows: “Well I agree with Governor Cuomo’s remarks....”

Another report put it this way, DeBlasio told reporters gathered at the U.S. Conference of Mayors in Washington, D.C. on Thursday that he stands behind Cuomo and his anti-conservative extremist remarks 100%. In response to a question by the article's author, Kerry Pickett, DeBlasio answered as follows: “The first point is, we represent our people and Governor Cuomo is right and I believe I’m on firm ground in saying our people, the people in New York State and the people of New York City reject extremists views against a women’s right to choose and in favor of the proliferation of guns in our society. And I stand by that 100 percent.” (See “DE BLASIO BACKS CUOMO: WANTS CONSERVATIVES TO GET OUT” by Kerry Pickett, 1/23/14, Breitbart/ Big Government []).

De Blasio made a small verbal concession that “we all understand there’s a right to free speech. I wouldn’t disagree with that right and neither would Governor Cuomo.”  However he immediately put that concept deep in doubt by asserting that any exercise of  that “free speech” could put you on the wrong side of New York “values.” DeBlasio clearly expressed his view of the governor’s remarks like this:  “I think [Cuomo is] saying that the attitude of those who want to continue the status quo on guns or want to challenge and deny the right to choose does not reflect the values of New Yorkers. He was absolutely right to say what he said.”

We now have the spectacle of the two of the highest elected officials in the State of New York speaking out against the effective exercise of political rights by a significant segment of their constituencies. Although these threatening remarks were directly aimed at those described as "extremist conservatives," the rights of all citizens in the State of New York have been put under a cloud by these doctrinaire ideologues, neither of whom seem to understand the import of the Bill of Rights in these United States.

If we can’t rely upon the Mayor of this City and the Governor of this State to respect our rights as a free people, upon whom can we rely ?

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

"Republicans For Change" against Chairman Craig Eaton and the Brooklyn GOP — Very little storm in Court amid big winter storm outside

Against the backdrop of a major winter storm swirling around the Brooklyn Civic Center and the rest of the City  ---  The "parties" to "the big case" to set aside results the 2013 Brooklyn GOP County Convention were in Brooklyn Supreme Court to argue about the Defendant Chairman Eaton's and the Brooklyn GOP's motion to shovel the whole thing to the curb

Yesterday, Justice David Schmidt reserved judgment in the case with the abbreviated title, "Rudiano v. Eaton" (Kings Index No. 017848/2013), after the defendants' counsel had completed his legal arguments that the matter needed to be dismissed because all the necessary parties had not been joined in the action. According to the defendants, no relief could be granted by the Court in this election matter, because the plaintiffs had neither served nor named the New York State Board of Elections as a party in the case.

Perhaps surprisingly for some, the plaintiffs' attorney only made a perfunctory response to the defendants' motion for a partial summary judgment of dismissal; and there were no discussions as to the substantive merits of the plaintiffs' case.

Justice Schmidt indicated that he would render his decision on the motion for dismissal in due course and that he would contact the parties if he wanted any additional information or needed to see them for any reason concerning the case in the future.

Monday, January 20, 2014

The story goes something like this — Cuomo says that his radio remarks were intended to mean that pro-Cuomo moderate Republican politicians will survive in New York — AND — Anti-Cuomo extreme conservative Republicans just won’t

Now, isn’t that much better ?

Or --  as President Obama might put it --  If you happen to have extreme conservative Republican beliefs, you can keep those beliefs  --  Inferior non-conforming extreme conservative Republican representation will no longer be available in New York, but better representation will be available for everybody, equally

Basically, the Democrat Governor of New York was and continues to be saying that Republican State Senators that support the Cuomo agenda will be the kind of Republican politicians that will survive in New York.

Without putting too fine a point on it, if we focus on a possible race in Brooklyn, Governor Cuomo appears to be putting it all on the line for a moderate Republican State Senator like Marty Golden in any race that he might have with an extreme conservative Republican like Russell Gallo.

What Cuomo might do or say if Golden had a tough race from a Democrat was not a scenario contemplated in the Governor’s radio remarks last Friday.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

INTOLERANCE REARS ITS UGLY HEAD — Governor Cuomo wants to define which kinds of Republicans have a place in New York — Cuomo says the conservative Republicans need to ask themselves if they can “SURVIVE” in New York

Cuomo isn’t the disease, Cuomo is a symptom  —  some call it “being liberal” –  others say “progressive”  –   still others only say “Democrat” 

A CALL TO ARMS  —  The New York State Republican Party needs a New York State Republican Militia  —  and the National Republican Party needs an NRA (National Republican Army)

It was widely reported yesterday and Friday that New York’s Governor made some very noxious remarks for widespread distribution. The Blaze put the story out there like this:  “New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in a radio interview that if ‘extreme conservatives’ are ‘right-to-life, pro-assault-weapon, anti-gay,’ then ‘they have no place in the state of New York, because that’s not who New Yorkers are’....  ‘Who are they? Are they these extreme conservatives who are right-to-life, pro-assault-weapon, anti-gay? Is that who they are? Because if that’s who they are and if they are the extreme conservatives, they have no place in the state of New York, because that’s not who New Yorkers are’.” (See “NEW YORK GOV. ANDREW CUOMO: SOME CONSERVATIVES ‘HAVE NO PLACE IN THE STATE OF NEW YORK’ by Dave Urbanski, 1/18/14, The Blaze []).

The NY Governor made his remarks during a radio interview with Susan Arbetter on “The Capitol Pressroom” Friday morning; and Cuomo made his controversial statementss in the context of what he chose to portray as a “schism” between moderate and “extreme conservative” Republicans both in New York state and around the country. However, Cuomo’s most ominous quote was not as widely reported as some of the lines that did make the headlines.

The Governor’s statements about conservative Republicans were obnoxious enough, but Cuomo underlined his mail-fisted posturing by telling conservatives to “figure out if your extreme conservative philosophy can survive in this state and the answer is no.”  He didn’t ask if we thought the conservative philosophy would “flourish” or “succeed”  —  Cuomo was asking us to think about whether conservatives and their conservative philosophy would “survive” anywhere in New York.

Too many will focus only on Andrew Cuomo and the fact that he made these remarks at this time. True social conservatives know that the recent comments are just a reflection of a socio-political pathology that has plunged this country in a culture war that is multi-generational. Alien (un-American) notions that were pushed by the Comintern in the 30s, 40s and 50s were adopted by Democrats who called themselves “liberals” in the 50s and 60s, and lately they have posed as “progressives” so as to submerge, blend-in and become confused with a more traditional brand of Americans from early in the 20th Century. Cuomo is symptomatic of the pathology, he isn’t the pathology itself.  By whatever name it goes, this pathology is a disease that needs to be battled just like Cancer, TB, Small Pox or AIDS. Certainly in needs to be battled by all conservative Republicans  —  by whatever means are available, locally, statewide and nationally.

That part of what the so-called “Democrat” Cuomo said that addressed the survival of conservative Republicans in New York  was nothing less than a thinly veiled threat of persecution, prosecution, and yes, even execution. It would have made any Fascist, Nazi or Commie thug proud in any one of their Twentieth Century European, Asian, African or New World regimes.

For any proud American patriot, who happens to be a conservative Republican living in New York, this should be seen as more than a thuggish threat or alarming hyperbole  —   it should be seen and heard as an actual ALARM. Look at the coverage of Andrew Cuomo’s statements in The Blaze  — see the whole context of the article  —  read some of the hundreds of comments that followed; and ask yourself this: “Is this moment in history a personal CALL TO ARMS ?”

There are countless firearms  —  pistols, shotguns, rifles, carbines and others  —  that are still legal to obtain and own in New York State, even with the NYS  S.A.F.E. law on the books. All conservative Republicans need ask themselves if they need to arm themselves for their own good and survival. That would certainly not be what Andrew Cuomo wants you to “take away” from his radio interview  —  but who cares what he thinks. Imagine if gun purchases soared even more since he made his remarks on Friday than they did after passage of his anti-gun laws.

Maybe, Andrew Cuomo needs to think about this again. Remarks like the ones that he made on Friday, are exactly what might lead the extremist conservative Republicans to push the New York State Republican Party to sponsor a New York State Republican Militia.  —  And then, who knows, maybe the National Republican Party might see it as its historic mission to establish a National Republican Army (NRA) in the 21st Century. Now, there’s a couple of ideas that need to be explored....

Friday, January 17, 2014

Cuomo “Tax Gimmicks” Supported by Marty Golden openly attacked by GOP Assemblyman in NY Post Op Ed

State Senator Martin Golden has been very open about his support of various Cuomo Tax Incentive Gimmicks

Goal of across-the-board tax cuts is impeded by support of Coumo’s Crony-Capitalist Tax refund and tax exemption schemes

In his State of the State message, Governor Cuomo made it sound like he understands that tax cuts spur job growth. Unfortunately, in practice the Governor’s tax relief program is an example of crony-capitalism at its worst. Cuomo’s signature economic development policy last year was something called “Start-Up NY” (sometimes referred to as “Tax-Free NY”) – maybe you’ve seen the TV adds about it. This Cuomo tax-relief program gives Albany-approved companies, that locate on or near predominantly “upstate” SUNY campuses, tax-free status for 10 years. Of course, this only helps companies with the resources to open or relocate “upstate” and/or the Albany connections to otherwise lobby for inclusion in that particular tax-free status. However, this program has other major shortcomings: at best, it will create under 10,000 jobs ( one-tenth of one percent of the private-sector jobs in New York); and the program will cost NY taxpayers three hundred twenty three million dollars ($323,000,000).

Start-Up NY was a major priority of the Senate Majority Coalition; and Brooklyn Republican-Conservative Marty Golden supported this bill in the NY State Senate which was co-sponsored by his GOP Co-Leader of the State Senate Dean Skelos, even though it gave almost no benefit whatsoever to Golden’s own district. In fact, in his capacity as Chairman of the New York State Senate Select Committee on Science, Technology, Incubation, and Entrepreneurship, State Senator Golden has praised the effect that the new tax incentive will have on various companies that qualify for the program.

Governor Cuomo is also a big supporter of another crony-capitalism boondoggle known as the Hollywood Tax Credit.  That program accounts for about a quarter of all New York State business-tax subsidies, even though the film industry generates less than 1 percent of the  employment in New York. The real gimmick about this tax relief program is that New York State “refunds” to filmmakers a refundable tax credit of 30 percent of any production costs incurred in New York. In most instances, the NYS taxpayers wind up cutting Hollywood movie moguls a check for the amount due.

Only a couple of days ago, it appears that our Brooklyn Republican State Senator posted a Facebook message that stated, “I am proud to have been a leader of the efforts to create a New York State film tax credit and look forward to its continued success in creating jobs and generating tax revenue for our City and State....” (See Martin J. Golden/Facebook - shared a link, 1/16/14 []). The problem with that is that there really isn’t much of either coming to New York State when a picture is “made” here. In a typical large budget movie, one-third of the jobs created were for casual temporary employees like “extras,” caterers and set builders; and the production of any movie provides very few sustainable  middle class jobs that can support a typical New York family, even on a pro rata basis where a given production company regularly makes movies in New York.

A proper conservative Republican position on either of these programs would be completely at odds with the one supported and the other proclaimed by Marty Golden. An example of such a proper GOP position is the one taken by Kieran Michael Lalor, a “Downstate” GOP Assemblyman from “suburban” Dutchess County. An Op Ed piece expressing his opposition to these kinds of  “Cuomo tax gimmicks”appeared in today’s New York Post (See “Cannibalizing New York’s Economy” by Kieran Michael Lalor 1/17/14, NY Post/ Op Ed print version; same as “Andrew Cuomo’s tax gimmicks divide New Yorkers” by Kieran Michael Lalor,  1/16/14, NY []).

IBD Editorial — “Senate Benghazi Report Damns Both Obama And Clinton”

On the other side  —  Democrats’ “BIG LIE OF 2012 CAMPAIGN” needs MSM and ALL DEMOCRATS to keep lying about Benghazi through 2013...2014... and it looks like that will go on into 2016

A recent Investor’s Business Daily editorial focuses at and near the top of the Obama Administration; it pulls no punches starting off with this: “Terrorism: The bipartisan Senate report on the Benghazi attack is damning to both President Obama and ex-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. She may be sorry she asked, ‘What difference does it make?’ ***  The terrorist attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi killing our Libyan ambassador, Chris Stevens, and three others was bad political timing for President Obama, coming less than two months before Election Day in 2012. ***  For a while afterward, Obama peddled the ludicrous story it wasn't planned terrorism but a spontaneous demonstration against an anti-Muhammad YouTube video. In the second presidential debate, when exposed on misrepresenting the attack, Obama pointed to his generic statement on ‘acts of terror’ the day after Benghazi, which CNN moderator Candy Crowley said supported Obama's new false claim. ***  A new Senate report settles this, pointing out that FBI and CIA review of closed-circuit video at the mission a week after the Sept. 11, 2012, assaults ‘showed there were no protests prior to the attacks.’” ( See “Senate Benghazi Report Damns Both Obama And Clinton” by IBD Editorial Board, 1/15/14, Investors Business Daily []).

In the IBD’s own words, the editorial continues like this: “But the long-overdue report goes much further: ....” and almost seems like a Bill of Particulars against former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

The Democrats and their allies in the Main Steam Media have generally been lockstep in their defensiveness about both the President and his former Secretary of State. Clinton’s defenders have dismissed the criticism as being politically motivated.  The typical line of their defense runs like this: “Clinton has born the brunt of the criticism from Republicans about the response to the attack at the Consulate in Benghazi on Sept. 11, 2012, that killed four Americans including Ambassador Chris Stevens....” but even though sh was Secretary of State, she in fact was hardly even involved ( See “Dianne Feinstein defends Hillary Clinton on Benghazi” by Ginger Gibson, 1/16/14, Politico []). After the release of the Senate Intelligence Committee Benghazi Report, a verbally precise, but in all other ways  mendacious, Senator Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.), the chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, had to quickly backfill like this:“I want the record to be clear: I condemn any effort to use this report for political purposes.... Statements on the Senate floor this morning and some media reports about the Senate Intelligence Committee’s bipartisan report on the attack against our diplomatic mission and CIA annex in Benghazi, Libya, intimate that the report assigns culpability to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for the tragedy....  The report approved on a bipartisan basis says no such thing. As a matter of fact, Secretary Clinton is not mentioned a single time in the 58-page bipartisan section of our Benghazi report.”

It’s been lots of little lies in 2013 to prop up the “Big Lie” of 2012. Now that a little more about the events of 9/11/12 and related matters has made it into the public record, it will require more and bigger “little lies” not have the “Big Lie” hangover into the 2016 cycle and hurt Hillary in ways that it didn’t do to Obama in 2012.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Kassar Column Confirms: Support For Cuomo – Attacks on Christie – Conservative Party Shakedown of GOP

Kassar’s column in local papers, this week entitled “Common Sense: The Conservative Party,” touched on certain items and themes  —   The Conservative Party’s annual ulterior purposes conference, CPPAC  – The strange source of praise and muted criticism of Governor Cuomo’s State of the State message  –  And the broad-front attack on Chris Christie for “his” GW Bridge situation

“Common Sense: The Conservative Party”  —   Now, there’s Irony for You 

Jerry Kassar’s column opened with an infomercial for/about CPPAC that, either intentionally or otherwise, demonstrated exactly the kind of shakedown of Republicans that whole exercise is (See “Common Sense: The Conservative Party” by Jerry Kassar, 1/14/14, Home Reporter/ Sunset News []). You don’t even need to squint to see it, Kassar seemed to be doing it as some sort of primal primate chest thump: “The conference .... concludes with the [Conservative Party] releasing its 2014 legislative agenda at a dinner attended by the party’s conservative endorsed legislators which is [sic] roughly 31 state senators and 45 assemblymembers from around the state. ***  This being a statewide election year with the offices of governor, attorney general and comptroller up for election as well as the entire legislature, many candidates are expected to attend in order to interact with the party leadership and media who are heavily in attendance.”

One might be a bit surprised because a statement like  “... candidates are expected to attend...” apparently lacked any subtlety; but what the heck, how much subtlety might anybody expect in a mugging !

Actually things like the part of Kassar’s column about CPPAC, Ross Brady’s blog, Conservative Party mailings and followup phone calls are not unlike the summoning of the Eloi by the Morlocks in H.G. Wells’ “The Time Machine.” However, although illustrative, this is only one example of Conservative Party cannibalism at the expense of the GOP. Variations on that theme were presented in my January 7, 2014 post below “In 2014 Republicans need to just pass up any Conservative Party events where the Mike Long, the Conservative Party Chairman, “will kick things off” [ ].

Kassar then moved onto an oddly complimentary “report” on the State of the State Address by Governor Cuomo that largely tracked earlier remarks by Kassar’s boss on his “day job” —  State Senator Martin Golden.  Kassar started his State of the State segment with this: “Governor Cuomo received high marks in his fourth State of the State address.... All in all, the State of the State was a relatively non-controversial opening speech for a re-election year. Some political commentators even called it a stump speech for his re-election because the first parts were a rehashing of the administration’s accomplishments.”  What is especially odd about this particular instance of praise for the Governor is that it came from a Conservative Party County Chairman and NYS CP Executive. The general hymn of praise for Governor Cuomo’s message and agenda coming from strange sources like Al D’Amato, Golden and Kassar will be covered in a future post on this blog; it should be ready and come out sometime in the next few days.

Jerry Kassar’s column closed with quite a calculated swipe at New Jersey Republican Governor Chris Christie. What is notable, though not really unsurprising, in this particular instance is how closely  Kassar’s observations track with Christie’s strongest critics of late in the main stream media; and that they are also completely consistent with the scenario that  Kassar’s boss in the Conservative Party, NYS Chairman Mike Long, is part of an ulterior group acting behind the scenes to undo Christie’s run for the 2016 GOP nomination for President of the United States. That was all brought up on this blog on Saturday, January 11, 2014 in another post below (See “WAIT A MINUTE ! ! ! Is New York Conservative Party Chairman Mike Long in the weeds pulling strings to screw NJ Governor Chris Christie ?” by YKW, 1/11/14 [])..

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Brooklyn GOP County Leader Craig Eaton Should REALLY TAKE THE LEAD by Calling on the SI GOP Leader John Antoniello and Asking Him to Join Eaton in Formally Dumping Incumbent Mike Grimm as the bi-county GOP Congressional Candidate for 2014

Eaton has gotten nothing but crap from Grimm  —  So, it’s about time for Eaton to deliver his own “Suet Sandwich” to “Mickey Suits”  —   It’s... Delightful, Delicious, Delectable ... It’s De-limit...  It’s Delovely ! ! !

The Grimm scandals look like they are nearing critical mass   —   and an ad hoc alliance between the Brooklyn GOP and a rump Tea Party faction would have immediate credibility if the SI GOP panjandrums and poobahs want to stick with Grimm

Even if Eaton doesn’t have Antoniello’s number programmed on his cell, he should take the trouble to look it up, and give SI's "Gentleman John" the courtesy of getting on the bandwagon nice and early. Besides, if the call isn't taken in the friendly spirit with which it should be delivered, the Brooklyn leadership owes the collective Staten Island GOP a headache or three. This would be a gift that would keep on giving to all the deserving SI GOP personalities, factions and office-holders, from the relatively young to the absolutely ancient.

From Eaton’s perspective it would be a win-win-win. Eaton looks like he needs to put on his Brooklyn intra-party war paint in 2014 anyway, since his own Law Chairman and Party Secretary have already taken a blood oath against State Senator Golden. So since Grimm isn’t strong on the Brooklyn side of the Narrows anyway, force Golden and Grimm to run openly as a team.  —  Btw, that’s a case where the whole would be less than the separate parts.  — And right now in Bay Ridge, it would be tough to say which of the two is the bigger hole (or should that be "in the bigger hole" ?). Also any kind of call like this to Mr. Antoniello will be news  –  all by itself. And it's always good to get your name in the news, just ask Chris Christie and "Mickey Suits".

Craig, if you want any more great ideas, I have a million of ‘em....

Monday, January 13, 2014

Is Congressman Mike Grimm a Lightning Rod for Campaign Financing Scandals ?

Grimm "called out" by the FEC for bringing in illegally large campaign donations from Boehner and Ryan.

Another completely new campaign financing scandal might entangle Congressman Grimm  —  This time a woman fundraiser has been arrested in connection with donations to the Grimm campaign through a straw donor [as updated on 1/14/14]

Federal authorities have cited Staten Island Representative Michael Grimm for receiving illegally large campaign contributions from House Speaker John Boehner and former GOP vice presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan. Grimm’s 2014 primary campaign got $4,000 from the “Friends of John Boehner” and $5,000 from Wisconsin Republican Paul Ryan’s “Prosperity Action Committee.”   In a letter to Grimm dated January 8th,  the Federal Election Commission stated that both contributions violated the $2,600 limit for a single donor for a single election cycle ( See “Federal Election Commission flags Rep. Michael Grimm for receiving illegally large contributions” by Dan Friedman, 1/11/14, NY Daily News []).

The buzz from somebody very familiar with the questions being asked is that, a national news organization has been asking lots of questions about Grimm’s allegedly close personal relationship with a female fund-raiser from a state well south of the southern tip of Staten Island. That woman seems to be involved in a campaign financing investigation completely unrelated to any of the charges now being made against Congressman Grimm. [However see "UPDATE" comment below]

Saturday, January 11, 2014

WAIT A MINUTE ! ! ! Is New York Conservative Party Chairman Mike Long in the weeds pulling strings to screw NJ Governor Chris Christie ?

Wasn't the Port Authority's Pat Foye one of NYS Conservative Party Chairman Michael Long's right-hand and big time POWER GUYS back in the Pataki days ?  Maybe some things really haven't changed that much since then ?  Pataki-Cuomo,  Cuomo-Pataki  --  Eh !

Pat Foye certainly was a Mike Long guy back in the Pataki days when he was on the NYS Conservative Party Executive Board and made an executive with LIPA.....   ( See e.g. "Pataki's Favorite Conservatives-- Mike Long's party is feasting at the state trough" by  Wayne Barrett, 10/27/98, The Village Voice []).

But, would a NYS Conservative Party Chairman like Mike Long have any possible reason to screw around with a New Jersey Republican Governor like Chris Christie ?  Does Mike still have any interests that involve either the NY/NJ PA or does he have his beak wet in other dealings with New Jersey ?

Do you think it could have anything to do with 2016 ?

Just askin'....


This post is the direct result of my computer search that resulted in the comment  “Galewyn Massey  –  January 11, 2014 at 7:36 AM  – –   UPDATE: THE “IS PAT FOYE SOMEBODY’S ENFORCER ?” EDITION” to my prior post below, “Friday, January 10, 2014  – ‘Will “Bridgegate” turn into “Bridgetgate” for “family-man” Governor Christie ?’ ”

The repeated mention of “Pat Foye” throughout the narrative kept sounding a quiet alarm. So whenever I saw “Pat Foye” I started to think “Mike Long.”

Friday, January 10, 2014

Will “Bridgegate” turn into “Bridgetgate” for “family-man” Governor Christie ?

Is the story in the New York Post a teaser of something more to come ?

What’s up with the story in today’s New York Post about Governor Chris Christie’s fired Deputy Chief of Staff Bridget Anne Kelly? (See “Meet fired Christie aide Bridget Anne Kelly” by Erin Calabrese, Jeane MacIntosh and Priscilla DeGregory, 1/10/14, NY Post []). Not much about the GW Bridge-Ft. Lee vendetta  —  BUT THERE IS  A LOT GOING ON BETWEEN THE LINES IN THIS STORY.......

Three Post reporters are doing more than looking into the day-to-day chores of some Ramsay, NJ soccer mom and her Upper Saddle River former golf-pro husband of sixteen years, whom she divorced just a few years ago.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Two weeks later — Cops and mall management remain mum about flash-mob violence at Kings Plaza on day after Christmas

Timeline of violence at mall, NYPD involvement and need for mall lockdown on December 26th, and need for temporary change of mall security rules and police patrols at and around mall over days following December 26th  —  all remain unexplained after 63rd Precinct Council Meeting

63rd Pct. Commander ducks Community Meeting and avoids talking about December 26th incident at mall with old and new City Councilmen

On December 30th I made the following provocative query on this blog: “Has the News about the Flashmob Violence that Hit Brooklyn’s Kings Plaza Mall been suppressed ?” (See post of same title by Galewyn Massey, below on this blog at 12/30/13). Sad to say, there are no new details about the December 26th incedent(s) at Kings Plaza that are available at this time. However, in the nature of “BACKFILL” there is a rather long and detailed report of the event by Colin Mixson that appeared in the Courier Life’s Brooklyn Daily on the same day as my post about the events ( See “Brawl at the mall!” by Colin Mixson, 12/30/13, Courier Life/ Brooklyn Daily

The Colin Mixson coverage provides this approximate narrative timeline: “The first brawls began at around 1:30 pm, and the constant fighting prompted stores across the mall to close their doors and lower their gates, according to Schraier. ***  The Best Buy where Schraier works closed once for ten minutes, and then again later in the day for half an hour, over fears that the fighting and hooliganism gripping the mall would spill into their aisles. ***  The entire mall was closed to patrons for 20 minutes at around 7 pm, according to Schraier.”

On the other hand, Mixson also reports that police statements about the events contradicted that timeline to some extent. According to a police spokesman, the NYPD responded to the incident, but not until they had been asked for assistance by mall management, which happened around 9PM, when the mall typically closes for the day. That would have been more than seven hours after witnesses first observed mob trouble at the mall. Then a problematic message was sent to community leaders by the 63 Precinct on Friday morning that claimed.  “We had a group of rambunctious teens acting like children in the mall last night. We already had officers in the mall,” the message read. According to the police, the responding officers were able to disperse the rowdy crowd, and no arrests were made. Finally the police said that no complaints have been filed with NYPD and, until a report is made by a victim, police cannot say whether any property was stolen or destroyed, or whether any bystanders were the victims of violence, according to police.

Mixson also reported that messages left for Steve DeClara, Kings Plaza’s property manager, were not returned, but a statement from by Kings Plaza management had acknowledged that an “incident” did occur  —  “There was an incident last evening involving a large group of teens, but thanks to the support of the New York Police Department and mall security, the center is business as usual,” the statement read. In response to the chaos that overwhelmed the mall Thursday, the Kings Plaza Shopping Center enacted a temporary policy forbidding “teenagers” from entering the mall without an adult chaperon over the weekend, according to Kings Plaza marketing manager Dawn Simon. “For a short time we asked that teens only visit the center when accompanied by an adult,” Simon wrote in an e-mail.

As of the Monday following the Thursday incident, teenagers were again allowed in the mall without adult supervision, albeit with the warning that “disturbing behavior” will not be tolerated, according to Simon. “Teens are now welcome without escort. However, we ask that they respect the center’s code of conduct while visiting the center.... Fighting and other disturbing behavior will not be tolerated and we will continue to work with the NYPD to ensure our code of conduct is being enforced.”


Much more interesting than his report of the original event at Kings Plaza is Colin Mixson’s follow-up piece about the 63rd Precinct Council meeting that occurred a few nights later. “Locals with questions for the police about the post-Christmas chaos at Kings Plaza Shopping Center got mozzarella sticks instead of answers at the Dec. 30 meeting of the 63rd Precinct Community Council, and local leaders are complaining of a cover-up.” (See “Locals cry cover-up over mall brawl” by Colin Mixson, 1/8/14, Courier-Life/ Brooklyn Daily []).

According to Mixson’s folllow-up, “The NYPD’s official stance is that no arrests were made, because no complaints were filed regarding any theft and violence that occurred at the mall, according to statements from both the department’s Office of the Deputy Commissioner of Public Information and the 63rd Precinct. ***  Police headquarters initially claimed that no NYPD personnel were involved until Kings Plaza management called for help at 9 pm — when the mall was scheduled to close, and hours after the violence began — but the 63rd Precinct later said that it already had officers on the scene at the time. ***  A letter to community leaders from Office Thomas Podd of the 63rd Precinct’s community affairs office dismissed the incident as “a group of rambunctious teens acting like children.”

Several “community leaders” attended the subsequent community council meeting hoping to ask the 63rd Precint Commanding Officer, Deputy Inspector John Rowell, how the situation was allowed to escalate to the point where many businesses inside the mall were forced to close their roll-down gates, holding customers inside for their safety. But D.I. Rowell skipped the meeting claiming a “prior engagement.”  That excuse outraged outgoing Councilman Lou Fidler; “I don’t know what business the inspector had, but he should be here to communicate what’s happened at Kings Plaza,” Fidler said. The NYPD did send a representative, but the report that officer provided did not supply any new information regarding the December 26th  incident at Kings Plaza.  Instead, the substitute officer was only prepared to report on an overall  reduction of the 63rd Precinct’s crime rate. The outgoing councilman and some of the attendees believed the subject of the briefing might have been selected to divert attention from recent events indicating the contrary. The police spokesman at the precinct meeting declined to comment on the Kings Plaza incident after making his report about the improving crime stats.

Michael Benjamin, the President of the Bergen Beach Civic Association, later posted his agreement with Councilmember Fidler on his group’s Facebook page  —  According to Assn. Pres. Benjamin,  “Councilman Lew Fidler was exactly right in his comments about police not wanting to increase their crime stats via arrests....  So, a near-riot is ‘off the books’ in the 63.”
Incoming Councilman Alan Maisel (D–Canarsie) was also at the precinct council meeting. He said later that as the neighborhood's new representative on the City Council, he would push to meet with both Deputy Inspector Rowell and the Kings Plaza management in an effort to get to the bottom of the incident; Maisel said, “Now that we’re back to business, I’m going to reach out to Inspector Rowell and see what his take is, and I’m going to sit down with Kings Plaza and see what their security plan is.”

This all does have the look of a cover-up. The immediate question is what really happened that it needs to be covered-up like this.

“New York is a long way from becoming a Detroit.” — Brooklyn Conservative Party Chairman Jerry Kassar

“The sky is not falling, yet !  —  The sky is not falling, yet !” 

In other words, if you happened to read Kassar’s column this week, you’d know that in his opinion, as far as  New York City is concerned, things are pretty good, but with a new administration at the helm that’s going to change, but probably not right away (See “Common Sense: A cloudy dawn” by Jerry Kassar, 1/7/14, Home Reporter/ Sunset News []). Among other unrelated subjects Kassar wrote what he did about NYC, because the inaugural speeches of Bill deBlasio, Scott Stringer and Letitia James showed him that we all might be headed in the direction of becoming a Detroit; and that’s a very serious thing. However, also according to Kassar, thanks to the administrations of Michael Bloomberg and Rudy Giuliani, we are a long way from all of that.

If all that he said about New York City is really true, can Kassar explain why neither he nor his party ever endorsed either Bloomberg or Giuliani for election or re-election as Mayor of the City of New York when they ran on the Republican line?

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Is Hillary Clinton really a Democrat Dick Nixon in a dress ?

NO !  Hillary is THE  DEMOCRAT  DICK  NIXON  in a slightly different kind of pants suit (just look at the photo of her bowling that accompanied Chris Cillizza’s most recent tidbit in the WP)

Cillizza’s word pictures are a no less damning comparison to the Watergate President, whose congressional hearings ushered Hillary into the ways of politics in Washington

At long last our side has caught a break in the long run-up to the 2016 Presidential Election; and it came in the form of a memoir from a solid D.C. establishmentarian, former SecDef Bill Gates and other big posts, an insider’s insider, who served both Dubya ’n’ Obama. In Gates’ book is a sliced and diced early serving of Hillary as hors d'oeuvres before expected thicker slices to come in 2014, 2015 and 2016 by countless others. What is especially interesting is the quick response this has gotten from some in the leftish press.

Chris Cillizza, a Washington Post columnist and a semi-regular on MSNBC, was quick to pounce with his “the obvious is not so obvious that I won’t mention it” column in the WP, where among other niceties he mentioned this:
“But, remember this is Hillary Clinton we are talking about.  And, the criticism that has always haunted her is that everything she does is infused with politics -- that there is no core set of beliefs within her but rather just political calculation massed upon political calculation. Remember that she began slipping in the 2008 Democratic primary when her opponents seized on an overly political answer on giving drivers' licenses to illegal immigrants during a debate in  late 2007. ***  Gates's version of why Clinton opposed the surge fits perfectly into this existing good-politics-makes-good-policy narrative about the former secretary of state. And that's what makes it dangerous for her --  and why you can be sure she (or her people) will (and must) dispute Gates's recollection quickly and definitively.” ( See “How Bob Gates’s memoir could haunt Hillary in 2016” by Chris Cillizza, 1/7/14, Washington Post/ The Fix []).

In other words, Hillary, this is bad and you have to do something about it quick. Besides, if the column doesn’t get a rise out of you, wait ’til you see the gallery of photos of you kicking-back and enjoying yourself, with just too many of the shots looking like Tricky Dick having a good time in drag.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

In 2014 Republicans need to just pass up any Conservative Party events where the Mike Long, the Conservative Party Chairman, “will kick things off”

Even though the NYS Conservative Party might well be the tail that wags the Republican dog in New York, Republicans who think they need go to the Conservative Party’s January event called CPPAC are little better off than dogs chasing their own tails

In less than three weeks a bunch of coyotes will be howling at the moon at something called the 47th Annual CPPAC at the Holiday Turf Inn on Wolf Road in Albany, New York (See “CPPAC: Living up to the Challenge” January 2014, The NY Conservative: Volume 20, Issue 1 []). A look at the roster of the speakers for CPPAC shows that for the New York State Conservative Party looking forward is no different than looking through a lot of albums about days gone by.

You're only a real Republican if you can say this: "The NYS Conservative Party needs a Republican Party, but the NYS Republican Party doesn’t need a Conservative Party...."  —  AND KNOW THAT IT'S TRUE.  

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Following the announcement of his non-candidacy for Governor in 2014, The Brooklyn Young Republican Club thanks Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin “...for being a true leader in our party”

Brooklyn Young Republican Club Board of Directors’ testimonial recognizes that “...McLaughlin’s decision to not run took into account the best interests of our party and the fact that he can continue to be a leader from the legislature, where the people’s elected representatives have a duty to check the excesses of the Governor’s capricious big-government policy agenda that seeks to reinforce the status quo....”

The club’s complete remarks together with a photo of Assemblyman McLaughlin and Brooklyn YR Club President Glenn Nocera at a recent meeting in Downtown Brooklyn are available at the Brooklyn Young Republican Club homepage (See “ASSEMBLYMAN STEVE MCLAUGHLIN ANNOUNCES HE WILL NOT SEEK A RUN FOR GOVERNOR. THE BROOKLYN YOUNG REPUBLICAN CLUB THANKS HIM FOR BEING A TRUE LEADER IN OUR PARTY” posted by The  Brooklyn Young Republican Club Board of Directors, 1/5/14 []).

Joe Lhota’s acceptance of his new post at the NYU Langone Medical Center proves that he was never the right choice to be Mayor of NYC or even the GOP candidate

Takes spot as an under-boss at hospital and med school replacing man who left to be DeBlasio’s deputy

Meanwhile, DeBlasio showed what he is all about with his responses to the first snow of his regime

On Friday, the most recent Republican candidate for mayor, Joseph Lhota, was appointed senior vice president, vice dean and chief of staff of NYU Langone Medical Center (See “Former GOP Mayoral Candidate Joe Lhota To Join NYU Langone Medical Center” by Annie Karni, 1/3/14, Daily News/ Daily Politics []).

It isn’t that being Senior Vice President, Vice Dean and Chief of Staff of the NYU Langone Medical Center is an insignificant or unworthy position  –  quite to the contrary, it is a very substantial and significant position in one of the keystone institutions in New York City.  It isn’t that his new job is in any way a step down from the positions that Joe Lhota had previously held  –  no, it fits quite nicely into his already very impressive resume.  It isn’t that Joseph Lhota will be out of sight, out of the way or even out of the local spotlight  –  I suspect that, as “an advisor on issues of management and policy related to the strategic direction of the organization” and “liaison with government and elected officials” while Obamacare begins to take effect on institutions like NYU Langone Medical Center, Joseph Lhota will be tasked with being a front man in asserting the medical center’s and med school’s concerns, interests and positions vis a vis the implementation of that law and its related regulations going forward. The point is that Joe Lhota will once again be serving at the behest and pleasure of another Chief Executive  –  this time, the NYU Langone Medical Center Dean and CEO Robert Grossman.

This is the way Dean Grossman put it himself:  “Reporting directly to me, Joe will assist in managing all activities associated with directing a complex academic medical center....”  In other words, to the extent that Lhota will be a boss at all, it will be as an underboss.  It’s interesting that the guy Lhota replaced at NYU- Langone, Anthony Shorris, went off to take a job that Joe Lhota had held years before under Mayor Rudy Giuliani.

Anybody who argued that Joseph Lhota’s experience and resume demonstrated that he could be Mayor of New York from day one ignored the real requirement of the job, the ability to lead and have others follow. The fact that he squeaked by in the Republican mayoral primary – losing Staten Island and almost losing Brooklyn  –  showed that for the most part, even Republican voters don't choose heads of government based on impressive resumes.

On the other hand Bill DeBlasio, the man who did get the job largely with an every man pitch, showed how he would do the job within the first couple of days after assuming the office. When it snowed, he went out with his shovel; and when it came to his first big decision, whether to let the schools open in the snow or not, he listened to the opinion of the nearest person effected by the decision, his son  Dante.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Is Gallo Announcement and Anti-Golden Blog Causing More Problems for Craig Eaton & Co. than for State Senator Marty Golden ?

Eaton insiders and Brooklyn GOP coalition partners both unhappy with early moves against Golden by Gallo and Berardelli

So far Eaton’s response has been “Stop ....  For Now !”

The Eaton brain trust is at loggerheads. Things like Russell Gallo’s early announcement of his intention to run against the only incumbent Republican official elected in Brooklyn and the openly hostile “The Golden Watcher” blog put out by Gallo and Gene Berardelli have caused controversy and consternation even among the Brooklyn Republicans closest to Eaton. I’ve heard the behind the back sniping; and I expect that it will soon be coming to an "open debate" among all those involved.

One long-time operative, who more or less  has had a stand-back-wait-and-see-what-happens attitude, is almost speechless at what is viewed as the stupidity of openly trotting everything out for the world to see before any apparatus has been put in place for a real campaign with a winning strategy. That person had pressed for a multi-step slow walk toward any prospective primary. That approach would have started with a statement of shortcomings and grievances against Golden, either along with or in advance of a formal-style search for a state senate candidate to run either as an independent Republican or even as the Brooklyn GOP endorsed candidate. According to this operative, all of the Gallo-Berardelli activity is just a lot of noise that makes any slow-buildup approach, capitalizing on Golden's known and yet to be publicized shortcomings, impossible.

Other criticism comes from certain Brooklyn Republicans that had been allied with Eaton, but find it impossible to get behind a Gallo candidacy under any circumstances. Their opposition is both practical and heartfelt. They see Russell Gallo as a sure loser, because he is damaged goods inside the Republican Party due to his personal history of open attacks on a variety of Brooklyn Republican activists and Young Republicans over the years  —  they are especially annoyed by attacks on those associated with their own organization.

There will be some meetings in the coming days with an eye towards setting some kinds of ground rules or processes for going forward toward the 2014 primaries, and if there will be any candidate against a sitting Republican that could or would be endorsed by the Brooklyn GOP. Until then the word is that Eaton has told his guys, Gallo and Berardelli, to stop for now.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

A few 2014 New Year’s Resolutions for many who think that they are players in the Brooklyn GOP

Will January 1, 2014  be the first day of  —  A year that Craig Eaton and Marty Golden will show everybody in the Republican Party that making up and rebuilding the GOP is just “A Bridge Too Far” —  OR —  A year of peace and prosperity in and for the Brooklyn GOP  ?

The following Resolutions show the kind of Year that I think it will be  

Is a universal deal or any kind of lesser deal between the Eaton and Golden factions of the Brooklyn Republican Party something in which anybody is really interested ?  Based on several conversations during the holidays that I had with many people on both sides of the Golden-Eaton – Eaton-Golden year-long contretemps, there seems to be little to no interest in doing anything like making a deal  while the lawsuit about the 2013 Brooklyn GOP Convention has any life in it. It’s purely speculation to try to project any kind of negotiating when and if either side is declared the winner by the Brooklyn Supreme Court.

—  Both sides in the Brooklyn GOP fight should make a 2014 resolution to try to work things out before the competing forces build any momentum in the 2014 election cycle.  If they don’t, it will be tough to explain away ( to anybody who might ask) why no peace parlay was ever tried.

—  If State Senator Martin Golden and Timothy Cochrane are serious that Mr C should be the Kings County Republican Chairman anytime in the foreseeable future, they should make a joint 2014 resolution to actually roll-out Cochrane as a “candidate” worthy of the support of a clear majority of Republicans active in the Brooklyn Republican Party.  He has never done that in his life. Eaton has been chairman since 2007; and he has made his case as to why he should continue as the Kings County GOP Chairman. Unless, Tim Cochrane gets placed into that chairmanship by the courts, he should show that he is a real Republican by actually running for some elective office AS A REPUBLICAN in 2014. If Mr. Cochrane is as good as he thinks he is and as State Senator Golden says that he is, Cochrane should run somewhere in Brooklyn on Golden’s ticket to prove it. In fact, didn’t Cochrane once put himself forward for Congress in Weiner’s old district, garnering no support, and before that for Congress in the Brooklyn-Staten Island district on another party’s line.

—   If those opposing State Senator Golden are serious about trying to “beat” him in a Republican Primary, they should unite behind a single credible GOP opposition candidate ASAP.  So far, Russell C. Gallo has put his marker down by public declarations and the start-up of an attack blog targeting Golden by name (btw, the concept of the “Golden Watch” referred to in Gallo’s blog came from the "Coolidge family gold watch" referred to by Christopher Walken, playing Captain Koon in “Pulp Fiction”). There has been some mention of a few other names; but, to date, nobody has even done the little bit that Gallo has. All of the serious candidates need to name and file their committees, and start to show that they can bank some cash for a real campaign. The serious candidate(s) need(s) to make (a) 2014 resolution(s) to get this done sooner rather than later.

—  Any and all real Republicans should realize that beating Andrew Cuomo is a virtual impossibility in 2014.  However, freeing the GOP from its current  position of servitude to both the NYS Conservative Party, and the IDC and other Democrats can be accomplished.  There should be a series of  resolutions that: 1) Brooklyn GOP leaders will seek out and support only statewide candidates that will refuse to run on the Conservative Party line; 2) the Brooklyn GOP will run the strongest candidates possible against Simcha Felder and all the IDC state senators running in Brooklyn; and 3) no Republican candidate for any office will be supported if they have been first endorsed by the Conservative Party.