Archive for the ‘NY’ Category

Nicaragua: What it was like to be on the receiving end of the sandinistas

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013

Nicaraguan Marta Cecilia Aviles Asman addresses NYC mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio,
Bill de Blasio Should Ask Me About the Sandinistas
The New York mayoral candidate still fondly recalls a regime that I fled in terror for my life.
(emphasis added)

After the revolution in 1979, I joined the government. I was hired to help “humanize” Nicaraguan prisons. I was enthusiastic about the work—until I found out that Sandinista-style “humanization” often involved extrajudicial executions.

I once appealed to a prison warden to allow a diabetic prisoner his dose of insulin. The warden refused, telling me: “If it was up to you, we’d let them all out!” When I wrote a note to higher-ups complaining about all this, I was told by co-workers to get out of government before I was silenced permanently.

My moment of truth came at a meeting of government workers with Interior Minister Tomas Borge several months after the revolution. Borge was a confirmed Marxist but had been discreet until that moment. “Why not say it?” Borge said to the crowd. “We are going toward socialism.” The Sandinistas had already nationalized the banks and were confiscating property and executing opponents in the streets. I was scared to see what would come next.

Ponder for a moment, if you may, electing a mayor who openly praises such a regime.



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Mexico: El Bloombito lobbies against sugary sodas

Wednesday, October 16th, 2013

Not busy enough with New York’s problems, Michael Bloomberg is expanding his nanny empire to Mexico in Another Soda-Tax Squabble
Bloomberg Takes Center Stage in Debate in Mexico
,

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has taken center stage in a heated debate in Mexico over whether to slap a special tax on sugary soft-drinks to help the country curb growing epidemics of obesity and diabetes.

Having been tripped up in his efforts to get New Yorkers to cut back on soda, Mr. Bloomberg has brought his campaign south of the border, where he has backed a government proposal to tax sugary drinks in a country that is a huge market for Coca-Cola Co. and other soft drink companies.

as if Mexicans didn’t have enough on their plates:

Bloomberg Philanthropies, the umbrella organization for Mr. Bloomberg’s charitable activities, has donated $10 million over the past two years toward combating obesity in Mexico under a three-year program. The organization’s website lists “raising taxes on sugar-sweetened beverages” as one way to combat obesity in Mexico.

One of Bloomberg’s beneficiaries, a group called El Poder del Consumidor, is a leading supporter of the soda tax.

Back in the 1970s Communist comic book Los Agachados hated Coca Cola. Maybe they’ll dedicate a special issue to the meddling American millionaire.

Nicaragua: Bill de Blasio ignores the truth

Monday, October 7th, 2013

NYC mayoral candidate admired the Sandinistas. Mary O’Grady tells the real story about the Sandinistas:
Bill de Blasio, From Managua to Manhattan
Nicaragua’s Marxist regime was an inspiration to New York’s leading mayoral candidate.

Nicaraguan strongman Anastasio Somoza was toppled in 1979. Many had fought to rid their country of his one-man rule, and a broad-based ruling directorate was set up after Somoza was banished. It was supposed to organize elections. Daniel Ortega, a leader of the Sandinista National Liberation Front that overthrew Somoza, had other ideas. He wanted to remake Castro’s Cuba in Central America.

Mr. Ortega’s first step was to cleanse the Sandinista directorate of moderate elements, using fear and intimidation. In 1980, his security thugs assassinated Jorge Salazar, a popular and charismatic Nicaraguan businessman who had opposed Somoza’s dictatorship but also opposed the effort to install a Marxist-Leninist military government. It worked. Members of the directorate, who had naively believed that they were part of a new democratic Nicaragua, were terrified. They resigned and the ruling junta became totally Castroite.

The crackdown that followed was ruthless. Cuban enforcers were brought in to help. Houses, farms, ranches and businesses were confiscated, and the independent media were muzzled. Central planning meant price controls for everyone. Even rural women carrying produce to market were arrested as speculators.

Highland peasants who had fought to remove Somoza rebelled. They didn’t want to be ruled by a left-wing dictator any more than by the right-wing variety. They organized themselves into “Contras.” The Miskito Indians also fought back. In retribution the army burned their villages and carried out executions. Thousands fled to Honduras to live in refugee camps.

In the Sandinista nation some pigs were more equal than others. Property seized by the state somehow never made it into the hands of the poor, but comandantes got rich. When a decade of economic decline forced an internationally monitored election in 1990, opposition candidate Violeta Chamorro won the presidency. But the heavily armed comandantes refused to return their loot to its rightful owners. Critics dubbed it “la piñata.” Mr. Ortega has since returned to power.

DeBlasio, who honeymooned in Cuba, apparently believes “advances in literacy and health care” justify all of this.

Art, schnart UPDATED

Sunday, March 24th, 2013

I don’t call it performance art if anyone else other than the “artiste” would get busted for loitering if engaging in the same activity, but the MMA found the convergence of exhibitionism and celebrity worship:

Tilda Swinton sleeps in glass box for surprise performance piece at Museum of Modern Art
As part of her installation ‘The Maybe,’ the ‘Moonrise Kingdom’ actress napped in a transparent box full of cushions while museum-goers gawked.

The cot’s too short, too.

Here’s a group of bloggers engaging in performance art at a different venue,

IMG_0123

UPDATE,

Yoani Sanchez in NYC

Friday, March 15th, 2013

Cuban blogger Yoani Sanchez arrived in NYC yesterday, and received a warm welcome at the airport, unlike her prior experience in Brazil. In the evening, she spoke at Columbia University,

Thursday night, Sánchez appeared at Columbia University’s School of Journalism to answer questions.

Sánchez described the problems Cubans have when trying to access the Internet and government surveillance of independent journalists. She also spoke about the changes made by Cuban leader Raúl Castro.

“I would love to pose 50 questions to Raúl Castro. And I anticipate right now that they won’t be answered,” she said.

Sánchez stressed that Cuban government restrictions of the Internet have “been even more aggressive” than she expected.

Cuba is one of 60 countries that censor communications and limit or harass Internet users constantly. The average access to the Internet by Cubans is the lowest in the Western hemisphere. Individual connections are restricted to official entities and educational and cultural institutions, under strict supervision.

Access to foreigners and Cuban citizens must be officially authorized after an exhaustive background check. “But as a journalist I am not frightened by the problems,” said Sánchez. “What’s most important is that the Cuban government and [the Communist Party daily] Granma are reading us. That is why they have created an alternative blogosphere to reply to us. They’re acknowledging us and that’s a first step toward acceptance.”

Prior to her visit to the USA she had visited Mexico, where only four senators attended her speech at the Senate in Mexico City.

After NYC, she’s heading to Washington, DC.

Nanny Bloomberg: Feel the pain! UPDATED

Friday, January 11th, 2013

Don’t get injured in New York City, because Nanny Bloomberg knows better than your doctor:
New York City to Restrict Prescription Painkillers in Public Hospitals’ Emergency Rooms

Under the new city policy, most public hospital patients will no longer be able to get more than three days’ worth of narcotic painkillers like Vicodin and Percocet. Long-acting painkillers, including OxyContin, a familiar remedy for chronic backache and arthritis, as well as Fentanyl patches and methadone, will not be dispensed at all.

How often is Oxycontin prescribed in emergency rooms anyway, and why is Bloomberg sticking his nose on this?

And lost, stolen or destroyed prescriptions will not be refilled.

After I came up with this post’s title I found out Stephen Green had it, too.

A mayor’s job is shovel the snowcatch criminals. Not this stuff.

If NYC has a problem with junkies and painkillers, I suggest they start dealing with the junkies. Instead, Bloomberg will crack down mostly on people who aren’t breaking the law, by doing what governments do best: Creating shortages of vital goods.

But fear not, the short, plump mayor knows what’s best for you.

UPDATE:
Howard Portnoy:

Michael R. Bloomberg isn’t a doctor, and he doesn’t even play one on television. But that hasn’t stopped him from practicing medicine. Last July, he ordered New York City hospitals to begin hiding baby formula so that mothers of newborns would be forced to nurse their infant children. A month earlier, he enacted a ban on soft drinks larger than 16 fluid ounces, seeming to understand that if he didn’t take action, his patients – er, subjects … er, constituents … would drink themselves to an early, sugary death.

DSK: deal or no deal?

Friday, November 30th, 2012

Did he, or didn’t he?

French media reported on Friday that Mr. [Dominique] Straus-Kahn, 63, the former head of the International Monetary Fund, would pay $6 million to the housekeeper, Nafissatou Diallo, who accused him of attacking her at a Midtown Manhattan hotel.

Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s lawyer, William W. Taylor III, said in a telephone interview on Friday morning that the French reports were “completely false” and that the $6 million figure “is off by orders of magnitude,” but he would not elaborate and details of the agreement could not immediately be determined. One of the people with knowledge of the matter had cautioned on Thursday that no settlement had yet been signed.

The only lesson so far is that the priapic are likely to get sued.


A sign of the apocalypse: The Daily News and Newsday endorse Romney

Sunday, November 4th, 2012

The Daily News:
Our choice for America’s future: The Daily News endorses Mitt Romney for president
Four years after endorsing Obama, News finds the hopes of those days went unfulfilled

First hitting Obama on unemployment and the economy, they go on,

First came emergency economic stimulus. Because Obama gave free rein to House and Senate Democrats in deciding how to spend $800 billion, the legislation was heavily designed to satisfy the party’s constituencies and hunger for social programs, and inadequately weighted toward job-multiplier projects like building and repairing bridges and railroads — including subways.
After originally projecting that the program would produce 4 million more jobs than the country now has, along with a 5% jobless rate, Obama pleads that he saved Americans from more dire straits.
Next came Obamacare. While the country bled jobs, the President battled to establish universal health insurance — without first restraining soaring medical bills. Then he pushed one of the largest social programs in U.S. history through a Democratic-controlled Congress without a single Republican vote.
R.I.P. and never to be resurrected — Obama’s promised bipartisanship.
While the legislation has yet to take full effect, the typical family’s health insurance premium has risen and many businesses will experience a hike of $70 per week per employee, further restraining wages or producing part-time jobs that lack coverage.
Next came trillion-dollar deficits. Deep in the hole thanks to former President George W. Bush, Obama helped run up a $5 trillion increase in the national debt.

Newsday:
Editorial: Elect Mitt Romney president of the United States

Had Barack Obama done the job of president with the same passion and vision he displayed in seeking it, he would likely deserve another term. He did not.

Go read both in full.

(h/t Instapundit)


Private enterprise to the rescue!

Saturday, November 3rd, 2012

How Victoria’s Secret Saved the National Guard During Hurricane Sandy

The initial call to the Victoria’s Secret crew came at about 7:20 on Tuesday morning. Consulting producer Dave Shapiro and his co-workers were staying a block away at the Hotel Giraffe. They came over, and ran some feeder lines from the Aggreko generators through a transformer and into the building. Some basic lights in the hallways and the basement’s hot water heater were back up and running. It was enough to get started.

Then one of the associate producers suggested they might be able to power the whole armory up. They went into the basement and found the main switch connecting the century-old landmark to the lines of Con Edison, the local utility. The idea was to shut down the connection between Con Ed, then attach the Victoria Secret lines during to the armory’s busbar — the long metal strips that conduct electricity to a switchboard. It was a kludge, and it had to be done right: the producers didn’t want to fry the building when the local Con Ed substation finally started generating electricity again. “I have to admit, I was very skeptical,” Shapiro says.

But it worked. By 7 p.m on Tuesday night, the armory was fully powered; even the elevators worked.

The soldiers were still having communications problems, though. Many of the local cell towers were down, and so was the armory’s internet’s connection. Luckily, Shapiro had answer for that, too. For the show, he had leased a T1 line connected to a microwave dish on the roof. “We plopped two routers in their command center,” he says, “and now they’re sitting on our internet backbone.”

The troops also needed help distributing food. The Federal Emergency Management Agency had begun bringing tractor-trailers’ worth of emergency provisions to the armory. It was up to the troops to break up the pallets, load them in military trucks, and bring them to the seven distribution centers in Manhattan where the Salvation Army would hand out meals to Hurricane victims. One problem: the 69th didn’t have a fork lift. So again, they turned to the Victoria’s Secret crew.

Here you have it!

Meanwhile, Bloombito decided the Marathon wasn’t a good idea.

Over at the White House,

Where’s Obama? In Vegas, with Eva.

Life imitates art: Ahmadinejad in New York

Monday, September 24th, 2012


Yum!


Last month I posted a brief review of Gary Buslik’s book, Akhmed and the Atomic Matzo Balls: A Novel of International Intrigue, Pork-Crazed Termites, and Motherhood. In it, the title character – who bears more than a passing resemblance to Ahmadinejad – loves to indulge in Jewish deli fare while on his junkets to the UN.

The NYPost must have hired Mr. Buslik, or perhaps they read his book:

The anti-Semite’s special welcome basket — from New Yorkers with love — included such locally procured goodies as Gold’s Borscht, Manischewitz Gefilte Fish and smoked whitefish from the world-famous Murray’s Sturgeon House on the Upper West Side.

If Ahmadinejad (pronounced: I’m a dinner jacket) needed midnight munchies during his visit to this infidel city, there were also plenty of H&H bagels, onion bialys and Zabar’s cream cheese.

There’s also a bobblehead Statue of Liberty to keep on his night table, a teddy bear to cuddle with during those cold Persian nights and a 9/11 American-flag refrigerator magnet that he can stick on the minibar.

For the (dic)tator who has everything!

Related,
Pass the bialy! Piers Morgan: Ahmadinejad would have ‘no problem’ if one of his children dated a Jew.