Wow! Tuesday, November 3rd this year proved that every vote cast has consequences, and so does every vote that stays at home.
What were the ingredients that went into this election? Great question! Here are a few:
The pending health care bill, the out-of-control spending of tax dollars on failing banks, failing auto companies, a vaccine that simply cannot be delivered (except to the banks that were bailed out with our money), and a White House Snitch Web Site (an illegal disgrace all by itself).
Through the summer and fall, there were elected politicians in the US Senate and US House of Representatives who either refused to answer taxpayers' questions at Town Meetings throughout the nation, or impudently announced to taxpayers that they, the elected officials, were far better at determining what was good for the taxpayers. Consequently, they would vote against the taxpayers' interests because they knew better than the taxpayers themselves about what is good for them.
Or, as occurred right here with the Juniper Park Civic Association, when New York State's two US Senators, Charles Schumer and Kirsten E. Gillibrand (both running for reelection November 2010), failed to reply to our written invitations to address our September Town Hall Meeting after being asked to face constituents' questions on the Health Care bill.
We also sent written invitations to our September Town meeting to both House of Representatives members, Joe Crowley and Anthony Weiner. Joe Crowley had the decency to decline ‒ in writing ‒ saying he would be out of town. Anthony Weiner failed to reply at all or to attend.
So, we tried again by sending a written invitation to Anthony Weiner to address our October Town Hall meeting. Again, he failed to reply or attend. We have to wonder what kind of staffing operates in Weiner's office, when they blatantly refuse to answer constituents' requests. But, Weiner is the boss and poor performance is either condoned or part of written procedure. Keep in mind, please, we pay the salaries and all expenses for that staff. We, the taxpayers, are actually the boss. We don't condone rude performance on our tax dollars.
Here's an interesting tidbit about Anthony Weiner and his lack of respect for the constituents who pay his expenses: On Monday evening, he attended a Town Meeting to talk to citizens about health care and his vote for it. What's so interesting? Weiner spoke in Manhattan at a debate with Betsy McCaughey, former Lieutenant Governor of New York and the leading analyst of this and the HillaryCare health bill. Ms. McCaughey and US Democratic Rep. Anthony Weiner, a once and future mayoral hopeful who has called for a complete federal takeover of health care, squared off against each other in a health bill debate.
The results were explosive, as advertised, bringing the virulence of a summer town hall meeting—complete with heckling, shouts of liar! and signs conjuring socialism to one of America's most liberal zip codes.
I'm just guessing here, but it seems that Anthony Weiner is too cowardly to come to us, and tell us why he wants complete federal takeover of health care. Perhaps he already knows that his actual constituents, as well as more than 70% of the public want no part of this travesty of a bill.
Both Joe Crowley and Anthony Weiner will run for reelection on November 2, 2010. We all must ask ourselves: Do we need to elect a representative who believes he or she owes all loyalty to a party or to party officials or to the Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, or to the Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, or to the President? Or, do we want representatives whose loyalty is to the folks who put them into office and pay all their expenses? Is that really an imposition on elected officials, our employees, to expect loyalty and representation of OUR interests?
Loyalty? Our interests? Well, now we know whose interests Joe Crowley and Anthony Weiner represent. Both voted to pass the 2000 page Health Care bill on November 7th. Clearly, these two congressmen, whose every expense is paid by us, prefer to protect the political interests of Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic party and President Obama. Our medical care was not on their minds when they voted.
Did either of these politicians bother to read this bill? Ask them. They will be soon looking for your vote to be reelected on November 2, 2010. Mark your calendar.
This bill now moves on to the Senate. In the Senate, we can observe the loyalty of Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand. Will they too, choose Senator Harry Reid, the Democrat Party and Barack Obama's interests as far more important than ours? The Senate vote on this bill is approaching rapidly. Use the time to now write to these two senators to instruct them on who they must represent in their vote.
Most of you know about the two elections in New Jersey and Virginia. The incumbent governors were tossed out without ceremony. In both states, in November 2008, Barack Obama won by a very wide margin. Just a year later, the pendulum swung back. Voters are very angry. On Nov. 3, the anger showed.
Home here in New York City, Mayor Mike Bloomberg spent more than $100 million to be reelected to a third term, taken in defiance of our express wishes, twice voted in referenda. Now, in his 4.6-point victory over Bill Thompson, Bloomberg claims the margin represents a mandate. In 1993, supporters of term limits voted in favor at 59%. Opponents of term limits voted against at 41%. Later on, Bloomberg sneered that such a margin did not represent a resounding victory. An 8-point margin in favor of term limits is to be laughed at, but his 4.6 victory over Thompson is a mandate?
We know that this Wall Street financial genius never saw the recession coming, and spent our tax dollars wildly. Try this math: Financial genius Bloomberg spent more than $100 million to defeat Thompson by 4.6 points. My calculator shows that he spent $21,739,130 per point. What a guru!
In City Council District 30, Elizabeth Crowley was reelected with 59.4% of votes cast. Elizabeth will now serve a full four years, and the Juniper Park Civic Association congratulates her and wishes her every success in office. This, from the writer who endorsed her opponent, Tom Ognibene in the previous issue of the Berry. Ce la vie. Though Elizabeth ran on the Democrat line, she was also on the Working Families Party (WFP) line. Ordinarily, politicians pick up endorsements from Liberal, Conservative, Independent, Green and other parties, the WFP is particularly disconcerting. WFP is the party of ACORN, an organization noted for very disturbing activities. We recommend that Elizabeth separate herself from that party pronto. Think this advice is too harsh? See: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/editorials/the_wfp_goes_white_shoe_4m0r3RZ7BUCE9ngyksHmTM.
One thing is certain. We in the Juniper Park Civic Association will support Elizabeth in every initiative she takes that we can wholeheartedly support. We will likely disagree with some initiatives. Elizabeth surely knows that when we support an effort, we are unrelenting. So, Elizabeth, call on us for support. You will find that we must see that you are successful. To trip you up and prevent success, will result in a failure for the all residents of the 30th Council District. We need you to succeed. To succeed, you need to deliver. You need to represent your constituents ‒ loyally. Deliver loyalty; we will return the loyalty in spades.
We can write, testify, appear on behalf of efforts, and otherwise do all we can to bring success to many efforts whose need we agree on.
We in the JPCA have been working for years on the following initiatives:
• Reduction of truck traffic on Grand Avenue;
• Conversion of Saint Saviour's land for use as a public park;
• Increasing the staffing and equipment (communications, computer systems and vehicles) at the 104th Pct.;
• Elimination of overdevelopment and illegal tenancy; this problem bears on flooding, electrical power supply, parking problems, school overcrowding, crime, and severe quality of life problems;
• Overhaul of Department of Buildings, a rogue mayoral agency fixated on permitting building violations and violations of stop work orders throughout the city, and DOB constitutes a dangerous problem in this community.
Reduction of truck traffic on Grand Avenue requires technical expertise, political will, and money. But, after all these years, it is time to eliminate the problem, and provide for the safety that all pedestrians and drivers are simply entitled to have.
To convert St. Saviour's land to a public park requires political will and money. Or some imagination; if eminent domain can be used to take land from private owners to give it to developers, why not take this land from developers and give it to the community so the children have a safe place to play and the elders have a quiet place to meet and read?
Increasing the staffing and equipment at the 104th precinct will also require political will and money. It will require experts to identify the particular equipment improvements.
Elimination of overdevelopment and the overhaul of DOB will require legislation, enforcement, staffing and political will, and money.
None of these projects is at all controversial. Nor are most of them very glamorous. Photo ops will be difficult to obtain. But, there is simply no excuse for any of them to persist. The citizens, hard working taxpayers have a right to honest services from the government that collects all this money and the politicians who campaign on making improvements for all citizens.
Time to deliver.