Alarming News

October 30, 2005

‘Alarming News’ is in a New York state of mind

Hot campaign staffs, the Human Life Foundation event, the Wellington Mara funeral, the Maple syrup saga, the wacky mayoral election, a fight at a synagogue, the NY Times endorsing a Republican for City Council ,the Big Apple Blog Carnival, running into William F. Buckley and discovering a cool campaign slogan in a City Council race in Brooklyn, this blog has had a very NY-centered week.

Here’s some more interesting tidbits from this one-of-a-kind city:

***“We’ve got the mayor just where we want him,” said Freddy Ferrer-supporter Charlie Rangel. It’s true. Just about the worst place a candidate can be 9 days out is 30 points ahead with an unlimited budget.

***Though I’ve got plenty of people using my ‘real Brooklyn’/'fake Brooklyn’ terminology to describe the difference between the hipster northern end of Brooklyn and the down-to-earth southern side, it seems that ‘old Brooklyn’ (the south side, obviously) and ‘new Brooklyn’ is becoming the terminology of choice when sneering at the Nouveau Yorkers.

***Freddy Ferrer supporter Bill Clinton was photographed deep in friendly conversation with Mike Bloomberg. “The photo of a smiling Republican mayor joined by one of the most recognizable Democratic leaders in the world is a boost for Bloomberg in a city where Clinton is enormously popular.” Freddy just can’t catch a break.

***This one isn’t specific to NY but it does involve a NY politician and a NY-based blog. How bad was my cell phone problem of the last month? It was so bad that NY Assemblyman Pat Manning, who is running for Governor, actually sent me an email offering to put me in touch with a reputable cell-phone seller in his area upstate. So, obviously, I’m now a huge fan of Pat Manning. Not only that, but Wonkster, Gotham Gazette’s blog, blogrolled me and noted that this site ‘often focuses on national rather than local issues (or sometimes just writes about the problems with her cell phone)’.

***I know I’m breaking the Reagan rule about speaking ill of a Republican, and I realize that he guest-blogs on Urban Elephants, a friend-site of ‘Alarming News’, but what is Barry Popik, candidate for Manhattan Borough President on exactly? My only time meeting him him was at the blogger party earlier this month. His fiance/campaign manager had an extremely bizarre interaction with Dawn Summers but, you know, I wasn’t holding that against him and planned to go into the voting booth on the 8th and pull his lever. But then Peter pointed out his statement in the voter guide for NY and I just have to ask ‘what the?’ When asked what made him the best candidate for office, Popik’s response, and this is the full un-edited version, was:

‘I will never forget finally dedicating “Big Apple Corner,” alone, in the rain, while my mother was dying. No one needs to question my dedication to New York. But you shouldn’t vote for me for that, or because I found the first “beep” (borough president), or “hizzoner,” or New York “Yankees” (they played in Manhattan as the “Highlanders”), or the Manhattan cocktail, or Manhattan clam chowder, or the origin of “the Great White Way.” The difference is the qualities I’ve displayed to do all this. A past Manhattan Borough President had ignored the African American who called us “the Big Apple.” I had asked for help from some of the city council members running for this very position, but I didn’t get a response. And I guess a dead black man won’t get you many votes. But I love New York, and I care, and that makes all the difference in the world.’

Now, I don’t have to agree with the candidate on everything but I do have to know what the hell they’re talking about, especially when asked a question as simple as why they’re the best candidate for the job.