Tag Archives: reform

The Wheel

11 Oct

Courtesy Joe Janiak

It’s been a busy week, and it’s Friday, so I leave you with a few things to mull over. 

In 2012, Buffalo Spree writer Julia Burke wrote this article comparing how advanced the bicycle infrastructure was in Madison, Wisconsin as compared with the slow pace of similar change in Buffalo. It was rather uncontroversial. 

A Buffalo native, Burke recently left Buffalo for Madison – a city where she had no job, no family, and no friends. She wrote a compelling article about the reasoning behind her decision to move. This caused a furor on Twitter and Facebook. 

Here are a few passages that stood out for me: 

I moved to one of the Midwestern cities that have made themselves attractive and viable not necessarily through “Rust Belt Chic” but through flexibility and adaptation, by addressing the underlying problems plaguing American cities––struggling schools, segregation, lack of public transportation, violent crime––confident that the “cool factor” will come from real effort and foresight, and the superficial stuff will follow. I’m not interested in urban decay porn; I grew up with it, and I’ve seen how it reflects a hopeless privilege that places preserving the “charm” of detritus above making neighborhoods more accessible, environmentally conscious, livable, and integrated…

…After a recent event involving late-night art exhibits and performance in Buffalo’s grain elevators, a prominent artist friend of mine posted comments on Facebook about how wonderful the concept was and how the event could be improved by emphasizing a higher quality, rather than quantity, of art. Another commenter added that the event, while exciting and visually stunning, was set in a location rather ill equipped for its several thousand attendees, and addressing safety hazards for children and the disabled might be a good goal for next year. One of the event’s organizers jumped in and, rather than thanking the commenters for their very reasonable suggestions, shot back, “Thanks for all the negativity!” 

Growing up in Buffalo gave me most of my best friends and many exciting work opportunities. It imparted to me the toughness and resourcefulness that come from living through harsh winters and making ends meet waiting tables, tending bar, and stocking retail shelves in a city whose thirty-year recession has been recast as “affordability.” It ensured that I will never take snow-plowed streets or writing gigs or the knowledge that I am surrounded by a progressive, liberal mindset for granted. And in Buffalo, where we joke that everyone in the “creative class” has three jobs, the people working against tangible and intangible obstacles to feed their passion are some of the most amazing people I have ever met.

They deserve better than burnout. They deserve to be surrounded by people who have no interest in settling, who want to see their city rise from the ashes and will cut no corners ensuring its long-term viability. They deserve representatives who have traveled and who know what is possible.

Every problem we have in Buffalo has a political cause, and a concomitant political solution. In response to a promising young former resident’s article calling out Buffalo’s complacency, stasis, and inability to react positively to criticism, a Vice President from the Buffalo Niagara Partnership’s response was astonishing, claiming that the article was a “Dear John” letter; that it was “throwing mud” and she should “just leave”.  I had a Buffalo city planner repeatedly accuse her of writing criticisms she didn’t write, and which he wouldn’t quote when asked. He claimed that she was being disingenuous about the city’s walkability, which she didn’t criticize, the bus system, which she didn’t mention, and other things. 

I mentioned at one point that we have a bus system that doesn’t feature street furniture at stops which also displays “next bus” information. This is pretty much a standard issue thing in this day and age; even Rochester has this feature. Buffalo will never have it until one of the millionaire Lexus drivers on the NFTA board decides to take a ride to another city and deigns to examine a bus stop in, say, Rochester. Our Thruway system uses 50s era toll-taking technology in 2013, and because it has no incentive to change it (they’re all in Albany), and we’re simply not a priority, it will never, ever change. 

These are obviously little problems, which mask the much more serious socioeconomic and cultural problems that plague the city. We’re told repeatedly that sprawl without growth is unsustainable – I agree, but so is gentrification without growth. Buffalo looks great from the trendy ghettoes in and around Elmwood Avenue and Allentown, but there’s no “renaissance”, no “sense of place”, not a lot to be excited about if you’re part of the city’s vast, poor majority. Burke’s article mentions Geico jobs – jobs that are all but inaccessible to an inner-city kid, because Geico is 25 miles away from where that kid lives, and the bus system isn’t particularly swift. The region has been advancing, sorta – one step forward, two steps back. For all the cranes at Canalside, we have a failing and dysfunctional school district. For all the restaurants and boutiques on Hertel and Elmwood, we have crushing poverty. For all the soccer bars and dog parks, we have a violent crime epidemic and a city that fudges the numbers. Buffalo, for real. 

We have a tendency to cheer for incremental changes and mere attempts, regardless of the outcome. We cheer for our efforts to do things that other cities have long ago figured out. That’s nice, dear. Let’s instead focus on the difficult issues and cheer when we, I don’t know, establish a regional plan for what we want this area to look like in 20 or 50 years, and then create the infrastructure and personnel to get us there. That takes hard work and we have a population that is exquisitely resistant to change. Activism doesn’t just mean preaching to the choir, but convincing the public at-large that the deep changes we need benefit everybody; we have to stop pitting one group against another and lift all goddamn boats. 

What do you think our regional priorities should be? How do we sell fundamental, deep regional political, social, educational, and economic change to a conservative and resistant population? How can we sell these big ideas while convincing people (a) that they aren’t going to “lose” while others “win”, and that these changes will benefit them, too? 

The wheel is turning and you can’t slow down, 
You can’t let go and you can’t hold on, 
You can’t go back and you can’t stand still, 
If the thunder don’t get you then the lightning will. 

Won’t you try just a little bit harder, 
Couldn’t you try just a little bit more? 
Won’t you try just a little bit harder, 
Couldn’t you try just a little bit more? 

Round, round robin run round, got to get back to where you belong, 
Little bit harder, just a little bit more, 
A little bit further than you gone before. 

The wheel is turning and you can’t slow down, 
You can’t let go and you can’t hold on, 
You can’t go back and you can’t stand still, 
If the thunder don’t get you then the lightning will. 

Small wheel turn by the fire and rod, 
Big wheel turn by the grace of God, 
Every time that wheel turn ’round, 
Bound to cover just a little more ground. 

The wheel is turning and you can’t slow down, 
You can’t let go and you can’t hold on, 
You can’t go back and you can’t stand still, 
If the thunder don’t get you then the lightning will. 

Won’t you try just a little bit harder, 
Couldn’t you try just a little bit more? 
Won’t you try just a little bit harder, 
Couldn’t you try just a little bit more 

Thruway

7 Dec

Not unexpectedly, chairman of the New York State Thruway Authority Howard Milstein is doing for the Thruway exactly what he’s done for Niagara Falls under the auspices of his Niagara Falls Redevelopment, LLC

That is, nothing

In 2011, its revenue dropped by 1.1%, but its costs went up by 3.9%. Its operation is firmly stuck in the 1950s – so antiquated that it employs human beings to operate an automated ticket dispenser and hand toll tickets out to motorists. It is a caricature of idiotic work rules and redundancy. 

Governor Cuomo appointed Milstein to this post – is he pleased with how the Thruway is doing and what it’s done? Is anyone in the Albany delegation living west of Albany and within 30 – 40 miles of a Great Lakes sick of the fact that the state runs a 1950s-era toll road in 2012 that acts as a tax on motorists living within that geographic range?  I mean, legislators from the north have a freeway to get to Albany, those from the south have the free Taconic, and those from the Southern Tier have the free 86/17 and the I-88 to get to Albany. Legislators who live within 20 miles of the Thruway west of Albany should be taking that roadway’s cost and operation as if it was a discriminatory tax on their constituents. 

Enough is enough. 

The 47% and Irony

26 Sep

Let’s personalize Mitt Romney’s denigration of the 47%. 

Cindy Nerger went to her local Kroger’s to pick up groceries for her family. She paid using her food stamps, but the cashier and then the store manager said that she still owed $10. Ms. Nerger replied that this was not possible, because she knew that food stamps covered everything she had bought. To this, the store manager replied, “Okay, just give it to her.” Nerger said, “see, I told you it was covered by food stamps,” to which the manager replied, “excuse me for working for a living and not relying on food stamps!'”

Granted, it was likely one of the few times the manager of a Kroger’s in the middle of Georgia was able to lord it over anyone else, but still.

When the manager insulted her in that way, Nerger turned and saw the other people in line, felt humiliated, and left the store in tears. 

Moocher. 

But here’s the thing

Nerger said she started receiving food stamps, formally known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, when she became eligible for Medicare and Social Security Supplemental Income because of kidney failure in 2008. While she waits for a kidney transplant, she cannot work because of daily 12-hour dialysis treatments. Her husband runs a carpentry business. “If he doesn’t get a call [for a job] we don’t have any extra money for the month,” she said.

Food stamps have been a hot issue in the presidential campaign, with Republicans labeling President Barack Obama the “Food Stamp President” and charging that Obama has deliberately increased dependency on government. The Great Recession and its aftermath have pushed SNAP enrollment to 46.6 million, up from 34 million at the same time in 2009.

Heartbreaking, right? Well, here’s the other thing:

However much the campaign issues might resonate in her personal life, Nerger said she doesn’t have cable and hasn’t been following politics or the presidential election. Still, she doesn’t think much of either Obama or his Republican opponent, Mitt Romney.

“They’re all gonna kill us,” she said. “Most of the people that we have to choose from — Obama with his spending and his health care reform, and then Mitt Romney, he just wants to let poor people die, so either way we’re doomed. So I don’t see any point in voting.”

Scroll back up to the part where she’s a Medicare recipient. She is a beneficiary of a federally run single-payer health insurance program and denigrates Obamacare and “spending”.

WTF, people. 

The 1950s Called. They Want Their Toll Road Back

20 Jun

According to its 2011 annual report, the New York State Thruway Authority’s toll revenue decreased by $7.1 million, or 1.1% from the previous year. Expenses, however, increased by $17.1 million, or 3.9%. Its results the year before were a bit better, with slightly higher revenue versus 2009 and a smaller increase in expenses, despite divesting itself of I-84 maintenance. 

The Authority is now desperate for a dramatic toll increase. A few weeks ago, it proposed a 45% increase on tolls for commercial trucks. The toll for a truck with three or more axles would increase from $88 to $127 to travel from New York City to Buffalo. 

Makes sense. Charge almost 50% higher tolls on the vehicles that deliver stuff to people, and the working people who drive them. 

It costs close to $20 to drive your car from the Major Deegan to the I-90/I-290 interchange. For the privilege, you can eat at some of the only Roy Rogerses in New York State

Recently, both Moody’s and S&P changed their outlook on the Thruway Authority to negative. It suggested that the Authority would need to raise tolls by more than 45% on trucks to adequately service its existing debt, before we get to the $5 billion plan to replace the Tappan Zee Bridge. Yet an increase in tolls would result in a likely change in customer behavior; i.e., people and trucks will seek alternate routes. 

The conservative Manhattan Institute points out that, in a tough economy, toll road usage and revenue have dropped in Spain, France, and Italy, which rely heavily on pay-as-you-go toll highways. Given that the I-80 through Pennsylvania and Route 17 / I-86 through the Catskills and Southern Tier offer up toll-free alternatives for traffic making the East-West trip within reasonably close proximity to the Thruway. If tolls go up by half, vehicles would probably seek to minimize the time they spend on the pay road. 

Legislators don’t care. Their cost to drive to Albany for session is reimbursed. The Thruway doesn’t care – they get free EZ-Passes. The entire operation is an anachronism. It’s poorly run, poorly maintained, expensive, and costs a lot to administer.  

Photo by g-trieber @ Flickr.com

Photo by g-trieber @ Flickr.com

The state DOT, which manages not just highways, but airports, seaports, and some public transportation, has an annual budget of $9.6 billion. The Thruway Authority, which manages the Thruway and Erie Canal, has an annual budget of over a billion dollars, and a little over half of its money is collected through tolls.

The obvious solution is abolition of the bloated, inefficient Thruway Authority. The problem is – if you incorporate it into the State DOT, it will cost money to maintain and service, and the money has to come from somewhere. Most likely, your pocket through gas tax hikes or similar. The nice thing about tolls is that it’s a pay-per-use system. But there’s another way.

If tolls are to be maintained, the Thruway could take a hint from Toronto’s 407 and make toll collection something that’s done at highway speeds. However, that’s costly, and cars without a transponder pay an extra fee for the license-plate-photograph privilege. Instead, many European countries share the cost burden of highway maintenance through sales of stickers.

For tourists, we could follow the Austrian model where €8 buys you 10 days of unlimited travel on that country’s highways. Another possibility would be to follow the Swiss model, where SFr 40 buys you a year’s worth of travel on that country’s impeccably maintained Autobahnen, Autostrade, and Autoroutes.

Police spot checks look for scofflaws. If caught without a vignette, the Swiss charge you a SFr 200 fine, plus the cost of a vignette. The Austrians will fine you €120 on the spot.  Given that it now costs almost $20 to get from the Major Deegan to the PA line, a $10 sticker for 10 days’ worth of highway travel is a bargain. So is $40 for the entire year. Vignettes could be sold at welcome centers entering New York or leaving bordering states. They could be sold online, in advance, or, as they are in Hungary, even via cell phone text message. No more toll barriers, no more toll collectors.

Hungary: Buy vignette by mobile phone

The point here is that the roads need to be paid for, and it makes sense for the people using them to pay for them. People could avoid buying the stickers by using secondary roads, so it’s completely optional. We could abolish not only the entire Thruway Authority, but most of its associated, dedicated toll-collecting costs. We could get rid of its obnoxious exclusive contracts with towing and wrecker services on the Thruway, and get rid of EZ-Pass and its associated costs for passenger vehicles.

It’s time for the Thruway to modernize, streamline its operations, stop gouging travelers, and think differently. 

Buffalo: Read These

13 Jun
P5167433

Photo by Flickr user Sunny Hasija

1. It’s astonishing that racist behavior and actions like those described in this lawsuit could happen in WNY, by adults, in the past decade. If there’s a silver lining here, it’s that a federal court jury in Buffalo found this systematic destruction of a worker’s life absolutely abhorrent, and awarded tens of millions of dollars in punitive damages against the Luxembourg-based steel conglomerate that did very little to stop it, or punish the perpetrators. 

2. Remember that secretive millionaire wunderkind from Cleveland who bought some of the most expensive and exclusive houses in WNY, and was planning to buy and renovate several downtown structures? His name is Michael Wilson. He was a fraud, and his financial “empire” existed only in Wilson’s mind. He even created a phantom financial professional, complete with LinkedIn profile, to help dupe unwitting investors. Wilson has since been indicted by a federal grand jury and fled the country.  His brother is awaiting trial, likely serving to attract Wilson back to WNY to face the music for his own misdeeds. When we talk about enterprise, investigatory journalism, Kevin Purdy’s compelling story should win an award – and it’s published in the Buffalo Spree. Who was Michael Wilson? Yet another carpetbagging huckster – reminiscent of the Simpsons’ monorail developer, Lyle Lanley – coming to western New York to promise us renewed relevance and prospective riches. All we have to do is, e.g., donate millions in money and land to build a Wizard of Oz theme park; or rely on the promises of a quixotic but charismatic Iraqi-Briton to miraculously complete only his second project ever, the renovation of the Statler Towers.  Buffalo’s renaissance, when it comes, will come because of hard work, planning, vision, and good government. Silver bullets don’t work any better than earnest crowdsourcing. 

3. Donnie Burtless from the local food blog Buffalo Eats interviewed retired Buffalo News restaurant critic, Janice Okun. It’s an interesting, short retrospective from someone who was once a pioneer. 

4. I can’t figure out which one is more socially acceptable – being some level of excited about Nik Wallenda’s tightwire walk across Niagara Falls, or to denigrate it altogether. 

5. Hey, folks – a new activist group called Effective NY wants a constitutional convention, and it’s run partly by YNN political host Liz Benjamin’s father.  

 

Call Your Albany Gerrymanderers

7 Jul

Last year, many state legislators running for office in New York made a big deal out of a pledge being pushed by former New York Mayor Ed Koch’s “New York Uprising“. The full text of the pledge is available here, and the signatories are pledging to push and vote for ethics reform, more transparency in financial disclosure, and independent redistricting. Signatories were touted as “heroes” of reform, while those who didn’t were labeled “enemies” of reform.

The redistricting piece is up for discussion now in Albany, and it’s not happening independently. It’s happening with as much self-righteous and entitled partisanship as the current, broken process in Erie County.

The Buffalo News’ Tom Precious wrote a story about it and a handful of Albany pols were quoted. For instance,

“Ed Koch is pretty irrelevant to the process, in my opinion,” said Assemblyman John J. McEneny, an Albany Democrat who is the other co-chairman of the redistricting task force.

Yes, he is technically irrelevant, but the good government group he leads pressed lawmakers throughout 2010 to sign the pledge for independent redistricting. Here’s McEneny’s page at NYUprising:

So, he signed the pledge and is now reneging on it. Regardless of what you think about Ed Koch or NY Uprising, that’s pretty despicable behavior.

And another:

“We’ve long since run out of time for that process,” said Sen. Michael F. Nozzolio, a Finger Lakes-area Republican and co-chairman of the Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment.

Here’s Nozzolio’s signed pledge. It appears that he was called an “enemy” due to his refusal to release information about his outside income.

Redistricting is important because it’s been used as a political tool through gerrymandering to guarantee incumbents’ re-election. The incumbency rate in Albany of over 90% is the net result of a politicized process. The despicable joke that is the redundant Erie County Legislature has placed on full display the perils of a hyperpoliticized redistricting process. This stuff is important – it happens once a decade and has much to do with how your government behaves, and what it does in the ensuing years.

Call your legislators in Albany – in both the Assembly and Senate – and demand independent redistricting. Tell them you’re paying attention and that you support Governor Cuomo’s threat to veto any redistricting that results from a politicized gerrymandering process.

Excelsior.

4 Aug

The state legislature passed the budget last night. It was 125 days late – the second-latest-ever – and it lurches towards bridging a $9 billion shortfall by raising taxes and fees. Most notably for already recession-weary New Yorkers will be the abolition of the state sales tax exemption on clothing costing less than $110. You can do your clothes shopping in Pennsylvania, again.

Spending, naturally, will increase overall by 2.4%.

There was no debate on the floor of the State Senate.

There will be a billion dollars’ worth of savings through across-the-board spending cuts, and a measure was passed that would have long ago adversely affected Dale Volker. From now on, convicts serving time upstate will no longer be counted as part of the local upstate population. Instead, they will be counted as residents of the communities they lived in when arrested. Had this been in place previously, Volker’s district may have been abolished altogether, and this will have serious implications when districts are redrawn.

The SUNY autonomy plan was withdrawn, and UB 2020 holdout Bill Stachowski didn’t get his way, as usual. Although he relented on this issue, he claims that a “framework” or “outline” of some future agreement on SUNY was reached, but ideas aren’t bills, and bills aren’t law. The Assembly’s budget bill omitted SUNY, and the Assembly had left town, so the Senate never took up the issue in its final vote.

In the end, the “tough choices” that were made in Albany consist of panicky hole-filling. The interests of downstate and upstate New York have never diverged more, and never before has the downstate legislative leadership more starkly disregarded upstate’s needs. The reforms that are done are too infinitesimal to be granted the monicker “gradual”, and fundamental solutions to longstanding chronic problems with state governance are ignored.

New Yorkers – already taxed higher than most Americans – will be taxed even more now, and an already unattractive state for people and business will become even uglier. While downstate hits the occasional economic speedbump, upstate has been in an ever-widening sinkhole for two generations, and the current governmental structure ensures our perpetual influence-free status.

Excelsior.

Marc Coppola Running in SD-61; Calls for End to Fusion Voting

23 Jun

The political system is remarkably broken and corrupt. As a result, the policies that emanate from Albany are generally stupid, short-sighted, and designed to ensure re-election and the pleasing of various lobbyists and other special interest groups.

It’s easy to lapse into the habit of criticizing what amount to the symptoms of our broken politics, but oftentimes it’s important to go for the cure, instead. Two antibiotics would help to kill the infections that sicken Albany. Firstly, the legislative reform proposals that NYU’s Brennan Center has been pushing for almost half a decade should have long ago been implemented. They won’t be, however, because the current three-men-in-a-room system is advantageous to the legislators, who seldom have to do much or act effectively or responsibly.

Secondly, electoral fusion must be abolished because it is corrupt and corrupting.

Electoral fusion is the system whereby meaningless, pointless, and redundant special-interest groups and PACs get to call themselves political parties. But instead of actually running candidates for office, they simply cut deals to endorse major-party candidates. The minor parties get something in return, of course. Usually jobs or the promise of jobs. If the parties call themselves something catchy, they may garner 50,000 votes in any given gubernatorial election, thus ensuring that they remain on the ballot statewide for the following four years, cutting deals and endorsing major party candidates.

You think of yourself as a conservative, and refuse to vote for a Democrat like Tim Kennedy? Kennedy got the Conservative Party line! So vote for him there, pretend your conscience is clear, and help somebody’s brother’s cousin get a job at some state authority.

You think of yourself as an independent voter and enroll in the “Independence Party”? Welcome to the world of Steve Pigeon and Frank MacKay, as well as Tom Golisano’s money. At least Sandy Rosenswie got a job out of last year’s endorsements. Whew!

It’s particularly noteworthy and appreciated, therefore, that former Buffalo City Councilman and former State Senator from SD-60, Marc Coppola, has come out swinging in his current, new campaign against State Senator Mike Ranzenhofer in SD-61. Instead of criticizing his opponent’s lack of leadership or ideas, he’s swinging against the system itself.

Coppola has pledged not to seek or accept the endorsement of any minor party lines, and has also promised to introduce legislation to abolish electoral fusion in New York State. Ours is one of only eight states in the Union that still allow minor parties to endorse members of other parties and to count the aggregate votes towards the total. This ensures that petty power brokers continue to wield influence that is disproportionately large in relation to the actual number of party members or voters.

Coppola’s effort is radical – and that’s unfortunate. Every candidate should stand on principle and transparency, but few of them do. Indeed, many of them create their own little party lines for vanity or strategy. Carl Paladino is doing it right now for the tea party, and Chris Collins did it with the “Taxpayers First” line.

You can’t clean up Albany without abolishing the anachronistic fusion system, which exists solely to encourage transactional politics and discourages good government. Here’s the text of Coppola’s press release on the issue:

Town of Tonawanda resident and candidate for NYS Senate Marc Coppola is calling for an end to political corruption in Albany. Several minor party leaders are now under investigation for alleged illegal activities.

Coppola, who is the endorsed Democrat for State Senate running against Mike Ranzenhofer for the 61st district, believes fusion voting is part of the problem. It’s an election system that allows for candidates to run on multiple party lines. “Minor parties and their leaders have a disproportionate amount of influence in New York State politics and our government,” said Coppola. “It has proven to be a pay to play system and a breeding ground for corruption. New York is one of only several states in the country that allows the tail to wag the dog and the voters and residents of this state deserve better.”

Coppola has not requested and will not accept any party nomination other than his own and challenges his opponent, incumbent Mike Ranzenhofer to do the same. “As long as candidates participate in this system that has become disingenuous, sometimes corrupt, and an insult to voters, it will continue. I for one choose not to.”

If elected, Coppola will sponsor legislation ending fusion voting in New York State.

Now, here’s the question: will Mike Ranzenhofer do the same thing? If not, why not? Will anyone ask him?

Liberal Elites and Governor 2010

14 Apr

Shock! Horror! Jim Heaney exposes the WNYMedia.net liberal media elite.

For exposing Paladino’s proclivity for racist, misogynist humor with a side of horsefucking, candidates clumsily accuse us of being partisan hacks – part of a media elite. They throw around speculation about who gave us the information, as if that was even remotely relevant at this point.

But we never wrote that Paladino was a racist. Did we? No. We posted what we correctly described as racist emails. We left it up to the reader to extrapolate from that whether Carl is racist or not.

Do you think we’re sitting here with secret information about Andrew Cuomo’s imminent gubernatorial run, ready and willing to post nothing but happy-time posts about him and his prospective candidacy? We’re not. And an informal poll of the three of us who generally run the site reveals that none of us are particularly enthusiastic about any of the gubernatorial choices that have been revealed so far, and that includes Roger Stone’s ex-madam candidate.

I’m not enthusiastic about Andrew Cuomo running for governor because I don’t see him as being as strong an advocate for fundamental and structural change that the state needs so desperately. I don’t know enough about Steve Levy to have an opinion about it. Rick Lazio has made a unicameral legislature part of his campaign platform, so quite frankly I’m leaning towards supporting him at this point – but only as the lesser of three (or four) evils.

Because promising across-the-board tax cuts or spending cuts, plus firing x% of state workers isn’t a solution. It’s happy-talk that wouldn’t even approach bridging a $9 billion budget gap. I can get behind Carl when he proposes reducing the Medicaid program to what California offers, but when he rails against a welfare system that hasn’t existed in over a decade, that’s simply ridiculous.

I can get much more behind this. And Lazio hasn’t been in office for a decade. I don’t see him as beholden to entrenched interests who control Albany.

It’s hard to be a credible politician who will buck the status quo and make unpopular decisions. Of the people running for governor, who can do both?

Is it too late to draft Tom Suozzi?

Good Thing

23 Mar

Last week, the polls may have shown that more Americans didn’t want health care passed than did.

But now that it’s passed, more Americans are happy that it did than aren’t.

What a difference a day, a win, and a little momentum make.