Posts Tagged ‘New York City’

Policing the Police

January 3, 2015
There is quite a mess brewing in New York City between Mayor Bill de Blasio and the NYPD. First there was the death of Eric Garner after a confrontation with the police over selling untaxed cigarettes. This was a more ambiguous situation than the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri in that Mr. Garner had not physically attacked the police officers attempting to arrest him. He was resisting arrest, however, and the grand jury declined to issue indictments against any of the officers involved, probably reasoning that they had not intended to harm Mr. Garner and were only restraining him. Naturally, there were protests in New York, over this and Mayor de Blasio, who had run on a platform of restraining certain police procedures considered objectionable, seemed to side with the protesters, even after they were heard chanting that they wanted dead cops, and two cops were indeed killed. Many officers of the NYPD, especially the president of their union, Patrick Lynch, have come to believe that Mayor de Blasio is against them and they have been pointedly showing disrespect for the mayor and refusing to write tickets. As I said, a mess.

It is foolish and dangerous to take a blindly anti-cop position. The police have a difficult and often dangerous job that is necessary to maintain law and order. Those protesters may have cause to regret their wish for dead cops if they find themselves in the sort of anarchy that might result if the police decide not to do their jobs anymore. A police officer sometimes has to take action quickly on the basis of limited and conflicting information. For this reason, it is wise to be careful about second guessing an officer’s actions in a given situation. It is easy enough to state that he should have done this or that in the comfort of your own home. The officer may not have had the leisure to carefully examine the situation and ponder the best course to take. He must decide quickly if a situation warrants the use of force and he may well pay for a mistake with his life. It is for this reason that grand juries give the police a lot of slack.

At the same time, it is also foolish and dangerous to take a blindly pro-cop position. The police are not angels but human beings and subject to all the follies and iniquities as any other group of human beings. Great power is given to the police in order for them to do their jobs. If a violent suspect resists arrest, a police officer can use deadly force to prevent him from harming the officer or any civilians in the area. Being human, any police officer will be tempted to abuse his power and authority. We must be careful not to let that happen. The police must not be above the law. They must not have a license to kill or to steal. The police must not be worse than the criminals. An officer who abuses his power must be held accountable.

This is why I cannot altogether approve of the actions of the officers of the NYPD. It is gratifying to watch the progressive de Blasio founder as he discovers that his socialist ideology doesn’t work all that well when trying to run a great city, but there are larger issues here. Some have suggested that de Blasio should resign because he has lost the confidence of the NYPD. De Blasio was elected mayor in a fair and free election, as far as I know. This decision by the people of New York City may have been an unfortunate one, but it was their decision to make. The police department does not exercise a veto over the people’s choice, nor can they effectively go on strike by refusing to enforce the law. I can understand their frustration but the public’s safety must be the first priority, even if members of the public are not particularly grateful for the service rendered. I am afraid that the shows of disrespect for the mayor will only make it more difficult for the police and the mayor to resolve their differences and work together to run New York City. For his part, Mayor de Blasio needs to make some effort to show that he understands the difficulties that the average patrolman faces on the job. He has to somehow assure the NYPD that he can be trusted to stand up for them when things get tough. At the very least, he ought not to publicly associate with rabble rousers and criminals like Al Sharpton ( I will not call that scoundrel Reverend)  and he really shouldn’t make public statements implying that his biracial son is in danger from the police because of his race.

Calming a turbulent city is a task that will require tactful and patient leadership on every side. Too bad New York City doesn’t have that just now.

 

Advertisements

Thirteen Years

September 11, 2014

It has been thirteen years since 9/11. We said that we would never forget, but I am afraid we are already forgetting. A person turning eighteen this year, old enough to vote, was only five on that fateful day. I don’t imagine that they would have any clear personal memories of that day, unless they or someone close was personally affected. I am afraid that we are trying to forget the most important lesson of 9/11, that the world is a dangerous place, and there are people out there who would like to destroy us, even if Barack Obama, the lightworker, is the president. Judging from the headlines, we are already relearning the fact that withdrawing from the world will not make the bad guys decide to leave us alone. ISIS has already murdered at least two of our people and has threatened to attack our cities. I have no doubt they would have already, if they had the means. So, we are going to war in Iraq once again.

Well, I will never forget that dreadful day thirteen years ago, no matter how long I live. We will just have to keep telling the story to the younger generations so they will not have to experience any such attacks for themselves. With that in mind, I am going to copy what I wrote two years ago.

On that Tuesday morning, I was at work, driving from Madison to North Vernon when I got a call from my wife. She asked me if I were listening to the radio. I was not. She told me to turn it on because something terrible was happening. I turned my car radio on and listened to the coverage of the attack.

I went about my duties at the stores in North Vernon in a sort of state of shock.  The North Vernon WalMart and Jay C played continuing news coverage of the day’s events instead of the usual soothing Musak. Not too many people were working or shopping in the stores. They were mostly just listening.

I had to go to Seymour for a meeting that afternoon. On the way I noticed that some gas stations had raised the price of gasoline to a then unheard of price of $5 per gallon. At the meeting, no one wanted to discus the business at hand. Instead we talked about the terrorist attack. It seemed certain to us all that more attacks were on the way and that this time we couldn’t just launch a few missiles, blow up some tents, and then move on. We were in for a long fight.

I don’t remember much about the rest of that day. I went home but I don’t remember much about it.

I was once in the World Trade Center. I was in New York with some friends as a sort of tourist and we took the elevator to the top floor of one of the twin towers. There was a gallery up there where you could look out over the city of New York. The day was foggy so I didn’t see anything. They had a gift shop in the center section of the floor. It sickens me to think that the people who worked there went to work one morning, and then had to choose between burning to death or jumping, Not to mention the tourists, who only wanted to look at the city.

It still sickens me to think about the people who were only doing their jobs having to lose their lives.

twin

 

2013 Election

November 8, 2013

I ought to have written this earlier this week but I have been busy and more than a little tired. 2013 was an off year election so there wasn’t much to really talk about except for a couple of interesting elections. First there was the New Jersey gubernatorial election. Chris Christie won re-election easily with 60.4% of the vote against his opponent Barbara Buono who had only 38.1%. This was expected. Christie seems to have been an effective governor and has remained popular in New Jersey.The Democrats did not spend much money  in New Jersey, believing her candidacy to be a lost cause.

In Virginia, Democrat Terry McAuliffe barely won the gubernatorial election with 47.7% of the vote verses Republican Ken Cuccinelli with 45.3%. This contest has been seen as a sign that the Tea Party has peaked and that only moderate Republicans have a chance to win in 2014 and 2016. I am not so sure. McAuliffe won, but by only a narrow margin. Obviously a large number of Virginians did not think that Cuccinelli was too conservative or extreme. Mark Levin believes that Cuccinelli could have won the race if he had gotten more support from the Republican Party at the national level. He could be right. It is increasingly obvious that the Republican establishment would prefer a Democrat to win rather than a Tea Party Republican. Conservatives who actually mean what they say about a small, limited government might disturb the cozy relationship they have with the Democrats.

I would also note that the Libertarian candidate Robert Sarvis got 6.5% of the vote. If just half of the people who voted Libertarian voted for Cuccinelli, then he would have won. No doubt those Libertarians are congratulating themselves on not compromising by voting for the Republican, but the big government Democrat will be the next governor of Virginia. This is why a vote for the Libertarian Party is not just a wasted vote but is actually a vote for the Democrats. American politics is simply not set up for a third party and any vote for a third party turns out to be a vote for your ideological opponent.

I do not believe that the key to a Republican victory in the next elections is running “moderate” candidates. The problem here is that “moderate” candidates are usually the wishy-washy candidates who either don’t believe in anything, except getting elected, or are too cowardly to stand up for what they believe. Christie is not, in fact, all that moderate, except on social issues. Many conservatives suspect him because he has said nice things about Obama, but on fiscal matters, he seems to be quite conservative. More importantly, he does not shy away from confrontations. A Republican candidate for any office who is honest about his beliefs and willing to stand up for them, regardless of the inevitable hostility from the media, can and will win. Its these candidates who feel they need to apologize for being conservative that lose.

Finally, in New York City, Democrat Bill de Blasio won a landslide 73.3% vote to become the next mayor. This is unfortunate. de Blasio seems to be very liberal, even verging on Marxist judging from his support for the Nicaraguan Sandinistas back in the 1980s. His election may result in the undoing of all the work his two immediate predecessors have done in turning New York into a livable city. At the very least the class warfare rhetoric will encourage business to locate elsewhere and it seems likely that he will hobble the NYPD. Well, the New Yorkers wanted him. They will get what they deserve.

 

Mayor Bloomberg is an Idiot

January 19, 2013

We already knew he was a committed nanny-stater and control freak, but now he has shown that he is an idiot in this piece at The Daily Caller.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg slammed pro-gun advocates while encouraging America’s other mayors to pressure Congress to pass President Barack Obama’s gun-control proposals, during a lunch gathering of the U.S. Conference of Mayors on Friday.

“Most people I know don’t even have a gun,” Bloomberg said, claiming America is “the only industrialized country in the world” that has a gun “problem” where there are more guns than people.

What about his security detail? I would imagine they carry guns. Is the mayor not aware of this, or are they just not the sort of people he knows? What about the officers of the NYPD? I am sure many of them have guns.

English: New York Mayor, Michael R. Bloomberg.

Idiot

I think that Mayor Bloomberg needs to get out of the bubble he is living in.

Also, I really don’t think that having more guns than people in America is actually a problem., at least not to the honest and law-abiding among us. If Bloomberg really wants a gun problem in this country than he should disarm every citizen and render us all helpless from the criminals.

Occupy Movement has an Impact

December 12, 2011

There are some who contend that the Occupy Wall Street Movement has had a bigger impact that anything that the Tea Party has had. I wouldn’t argue with that. Consider the impact that the occupy people have had on the Rose Kennedy Greenway in Boston. Here is the story in the Boston Herald.

The Utopian dreamers of Occupy Boston are leaving behind a disgusting field of filth on the formerly scenic Rose Kennedy Greenway, where trees will have to be replanted, grass resodded, sprinklers repaired or replaced and the entire area power-hosed in a massive cleanup that could take weeks.

“We’re close to the end of it, which is very good news. Soon, the park can be repaired and open to the general public,” Nancy Brennan, executive director of the Rose Kennedy Greenway Conservancy, said late yesterday. “We hope everyone makes a voluntary decision, and this can be a good, dignified end.”

The conservancy has been pushing the city to take action to remove the protesters, sending a letter to Mayor Thomas M. Menino’s office last month expressing frustration at rampant deterioration of the site, plus health and safety issues, including “disturbing” instances of drug use and interference of a farmers market. A judge this week lifted a restraining order on the city, giving it the green light to boot them out.

And none too soon, as far as Brennan is concerned.

“Occupy Boston was really good about listening and moving tents that encroached on plant material, but there were some days where there were tents where they shouldn’t have been,” she said.

Conservancy maintenance and landscape workers have inspected the Dewey Square encampment almost daily since the protesters set up their tents more than two months ago.

Brennan said the grass, which has turned into a mud pit, will need to be completely resodded, and she fears several trees that have been damaged will have to be replanted.

“Three or four trees might be lost. There’s browning of the foliage, and there are some broken and bent limbs,” she said. “Part of what we need to do is check on the root systems, and that is just going to take a little bit of time.”

Brennan also expects that the sprinkler system was damaged so much it will have to be repaired or replaced. Also in need of replacement are about 20 percent of the shrubbery and the pebbles from a pedestrian walkway that runs along Purchase Street.

She also said the wall of the large air intake tower for the O’Neill Tunnel will have to be power-hosed to remove markings and messages left behind by the squatters.

“The grass crete has really taken a beating,” said Brennan, referring to the concrete-type material covering the delivery truck driveway that allows grass to grow through. “We need to see if we can restore or replace it.”

Brennan couldn’t provide an estimate for what the final repair bill will be, but local landscapers pegged it at upward of $50,000.

If you live in Boston and would like to visit the Rose Kennedy Greenway, too bad. You’ll have to wait until the city can clean it up. And, you will get to pay for the cleanup through your taxes. I guess that is the motto for the Occupy Movement, someone else can pay.

Don Surber has some words about these cretins.

As Glenn Reynolds noted: “By contrast, I’ll note once more that the Tea Party protesters left things cleaner when they departed.”

Perhaps because the Tea Party crowd actually knows what work is like and that city workers are not “maids,” but rather expensive clean-up crews. Working has a way of teaching one the value of money, which is why on their 16th birthday, we should hand every teenager in America an apron and a mop and assign them to work at the nearest fast-food joint for $7.50 an hour, 40 hours a week.

Now let us get a few things straight about who these loony goons are. For the most part they are spoiled rotten brats who took out huge loans to pay for four years of self-indulgence at some over-rated liberal arts college. Somehow, they were able to spend a few months in the fall camping out and protesting against the working class while not working themselves.

They are in that upper 1% who do not have to work.

Wall Street brokers do. 12-16 hours a day, 5 days a week. Maybe they do some work at home over the weekend. Much of their pay is based on merit — called bonuses as if the money weren’t earned. It’s a tough business. The risks are many. The rewards great.

I get a paycheck every week. Guess what? How big a bonus some stockbroker gets or doesn’t get has zero impact on my pay stub.

The Democratic Party indulged the Occupy Army this fall. Let’s not reward the party with a re-election next year, no matter how hard we must pinch our noses in the voting booth.

Meanwhile in Los Angeles, these fighters for social justice and income equality left 30 tons of debris for someone else to clean up. I think that it is interesting that these people claim to be fighting for the 99% against the evil, greedy 1% and yet their antics are hurting the working people. Here is a story from last month.

For the 99% — and the 1% too — the dawn-to-dusk demonstrations from Zuccotti Park to Union Square made getting around lower Manhattan a 100% disaster.

Truck driver Bill Crespo found himself motionless for an hour at the corner of Pine and Nassau streets as the demonstrators surged toward the stock exchange Thursday morning.

“I’m praying they don’t ro

“This is the most annoying thing ever in my life,” a frustrated Reignold, said. “I couldn’t get into my building. I couldn’t get through the crowds.”

“If you want wealth equality and income redistribution, you might as well live in a communist country,” she said.

The massive disruptions and civil disobedience didn’t play well with some of the men in suits.

“Out of my way!” barked another businessman swimming upstream against the demonstrators on Nassau St.

Another approached a cop for help.

“I’m all turned around,” he explained. “How can I get to Chase Bank?”

Indeed, the widespread angst among both bulls and bears had little to do with the Dow Jones on this brisk November morning.

Workers exiting the Wall Street subway stop found a maze of NYPD barricades before they were forced to show IDs for access.

“I’m going to lose my job if I can’t get to work,” griped Allen Fenton, 54. “These people are a disgrace.” He asked a cop, “Aren’t you going to do anything?”

The officer responded with a shrug as protesters shouted, “Wall Street is closed!”

Trashing public parks, preventing people from going to work, leaving hazardous messes for sanitation workers to clean up, harassing small businessses, they are the true and authentic voice of the People. I say they are a disgrace.

 

Remembering 9-11

September 11, 2011

In our age of mass communication, it has become possible for a whole nation, or even the world to be a witness of historical events in a way that would be inconceivable a century ago. There are those things which have happened, in which everyone alive remembers where they were and what they were doing, like the Japanese bombing Pearl Harbor, the assassination of John F. Kennedy, the first Moon landing, … and the terrorist attack on 9-11.

On that Tuesday morning, I was at work, driving from Madison to North Vernon when I got a call from my wife, the lovely Kristine. She asked me if I were listening to the radio. I was not. She told me to turn it on because something terrible was happening. I turned my car radio on and listened to the coverage of the attack.

I went about my duties at the stores in North Vernon in a sort of state of shock.  The North Vernon WalMart and Jay C played continuing news coverage of the day’s events instead of the usual soothing Musak. Not too many people were working or shopping in the stores. They were mostly just listening.

I had to go to Seymour for a meeting that afternoon. On the way I noticed that some gas stations had raised the price of gasoline to a then unheard of price of $5 per gallon. At the meeting, no one wanted to discus the business at hand. Instead we talked about the terrorist attack. It seemed certain to us all that more attacks were on the way and that this time we couldn’t just launch a few missiles, blow up some tents, and then move on. We were in for a long fight.

I don’t remember much about the rest of that day. I went home but I don’t remember much about it.

I was once in the World Trade Center. I was in New York with some friends as a sort of tourist and we took the elevator to the top floor of one of the twin towers. There was a gallery up there where you could look out over the city of New York. The day was foggy so I didn’t see anything. They had a gift shop in the center section of the floor. It sickens me to think that the people who worked there went to work one morning, and then had to choose between burning to death or jumping, Not to mention the tourists, who only wanted to look at the city. I swear that if I ever meet Ward “little Eichmanns” Churchill in person, I will kill that SOB, or at least punch him in the nose.

I don’t think that I have ever seen the video of the plane hitting the World Trade Center all the way through. I haven’t avoided watching it. I just happen not to have seen it and haven’t gone out of my way to look for it.

Well, that’s it. I am not sure what else to write. After ten years, you tend to forget about things. The wounds start to heal and you move on as an individual and as a nation, which is good. But we can’t forget things entirely. With the tenth anniversary remembrances, we can remind ourselves of the tragedy and the heroism of that fateful day, even if we have to feel a little of the pain all over again.


%d bloggers like this: