Revised from: The Extract
Upscale progressives have gotten used to tuning out the voice of the Trump voter. But there’s an America out there that they can no longer ignore.
David Marcus writes: Three days after the election, my wife and I were shopping at the . For those unfamiliar with it, Fairway is a less corporate, more co-op version of Whole Foods, offering pretty produce and exotic cheeses that don’t come cheap. The mood in the store was glum. As in most of Brooklyn, people stared ahead, moving slowly, still in shock from the political earthquake of Tuesday night.
“By the time Ronnie Van Zant’s drawl started in with ‘Big wheels keep on turnin’,’ everyone in the store was standing in shock. Brows were furrowed, people mumbled to each other. The song seemed to get louder as one of those New York moments happened, when everyone was thinking the exact the same thing.”
After getting our Brazilian Arabica ground for drip (I know, I should really use a French Press), Libby and I walked towards the organic maple syrup. That’s when it started. I suppose there had been music playing in the store, but I hadn’t noticed until a familiar guitar lick pierced the air and a soft voice said, “Turn it up.”
“A woman in her fifties, wearing a Love Trump Hates button, turned to her Brooklyn-bearded husband and said loudly, ‘This is unbelievable!’ She found the nearest store clerk, a young woman in a green apron who was staring up at the ceiling, looking for the invisible speakers blaring this message from the other America. ‘This is so inappropriate,’ the woman said. ‘Can we turn this off?'”
Libby and I both stopped and looked at each other. “Seriously?” said my wife, a very disappointed Clinton supporter. She started gripping her soft Tomme Crayeuse a little too hard. By the time Ronnie Van Zant’s drawl started in with “Big wheels keep on turnin’,” everyone in the store was standing in shock.
Brows were furrowed, people mumbled to each other. The song seemed to get louder as one of those New York moments happened, when everyone was thinking the exact the same thing.
“Cafés turned into phone banks, where you could buy a croissant and make a few calls to flyover country. Buttons, banners, and bumper stickers were everywhere…As the election grew near, confidence was overflowing.”
A woman in her fifties, wearing a Love Trump Hates button, turned to her Brooklyn-bearded husband and said loudly, “This is unbelievable!” She found the nearest store clerk, a young woman in a green apron who was staring up at the ceiling, looking for the invisible speakers blaring this message from the other America. “This is so inappropriate,” the woman said. “Can we turn this off?”
The City of Homes, Cafés, and Clinton
Brooklyn was the epicenter of the Clinton campaign. Throughout the summer and fall in Brooklyn Heights, you could see young staffers near the campaign headquarters: expensive coffee in hand, eyes bright, ready to tackle the future. Read the rest of this entry »
In Flagrante Delicto: Middle School Teacher Christine Taylor Invited a Teen to Her Home for Pizza, But His Mom Walked In On…Posted: January 4, 2016
44-year-old teacher Christine Taylor of Naperville, Ill. has been accused of sexually abusing a 16-year-old teen after inviting the teen and his mother to her home for pizza on New Year’s Day.
“Around 9 p.m., police said Taylor convinced the victim’s mother to allow him to walk Taylor’s dog with her. Instead of walking the dog, Taylor allegedly took the boy to her bedroom and sexually abused him.”
Taylor, a language arts teacher at Jefferson Middle School, allegedly convinced the mother to let her son go with her to walk the dog. Little did the mother know that “walk the dog” meant “take him to the bedroom.”
“The mother apparently caught her in the act. Another resident in Taylor’s house called the police and Taylor was arrested.”
According to ABC7, “around 9 p.m., police said Taylor convinced the victim’s mother to allow him to walk Taylor’s dog with her. Instead of walking the dog, Taylor allegedly took the boy to her bedroom and sexually abused him.”
The mother apparently caught her in the act….(read more)
“Current information suggests that ISIL (aka Da’esh), al-Qa’ida, Boko Haram, and other terrorist groups continue to plan terrorist attacks in multiple regions. These attacks may employ a wide variety of tactics, using conventional and non-conventional weapons and targeting both official and private interests.”
— Statement from the State Department
“Authorities believe the likelihood of terror attacks will continue as members of ISIL/Da’esh return from Syria and Iraq. Additionally, there is a continuing threat from unaffiliated persons planning attacks inspired by major terrorist organizations but conducted on an individual basis.”
— State Department warning
“…Extremists have targeted large sporting events, theatres, open markets, and aviation services. In the past year, there have been multiple attacks in France, Nigeria, Denmark, Turkey, and Mali. ISIL/Da’esh has claimed responsibility for the bombing of a Russian airliner in Egypt.”
Alyssa Zauderer reports: The department says all U.S. citizens should remain vigilant when in public places or using transportation.
Now for Hipsters: Baijiu Makes Its Way to New York
Carlos Tejada reports: So says one New Yorker who now quaffs baijiu, the most Chinese of tipples. The stern-smelling stuff has made its way onto the cocktail menus of tony watering holes in Manhattan and Brooklyn. The challenge, says at least one bartender, is making its distinct taste complement the cocktail rather than taking it over. The WSJ’s Charles Passy writes:
And in Brooklyn’s Carroll Gardens, the JakeWalk, a craft cocktail bar, recently added Shaolin Land, a complex drink that combines baijiu with other exotic spirits, including an Italian myrtle berry liqueur, as part of a fall menu revamp….(read more)
Source: China Real Time Report – WSJ
It’s looked unified compared to the fractious Republican presidential field, but contentious issues—like increasing crime—could tear it apart.
David Frum writes: Nobody explained the crack-up of the New Deal coalition better than New York Mayor Ed Koch at the 1980 Democratic convention:
When I ran for Mayor, I went up to a Bronx senior citizens center, and I told 200 senior citizens: “Ladies and gentlemen, a judge I helped elect was mugged recently. And do you know what that judge did, ladies and gentlemen? He called a press conference and he said to the newsmen, ‘This mugging of me will in no way affect my decision in matters of this kind.’ And an elderly lady got up in the back of the room and said, ‘Then mug him again.’”
It was crime more than any other single issue that drove blue-collar voters in the industrial states from the party of Truman and Johnson to the party of Nixon and Reagan. In 1974—a year of energy shock, inflation, recession, Watergate, Vietnam, and other crises—Americans told pollsters they regarded crime as the single-most important issue facing the country. That year, the Department of Justice introduced a new and more accurate method of collecting crime statistics. It found that 37 million American households—one out of four—had suffered a rape, robbery, burglary, assault, larceny, or auto theft in the previous year.
“It was crime that separated New Democrats from Old in the 1980s. Bill Clinton was determined that nobody would Willie Horton him. He backed the death penalty, endorsed longer sentences, and funded local police forces, all with a view to stopping crime by punishing criminals.”
Then the crime rate fell. It fell suddenly, it fell fast, and it fell far. By 2010, rates of crime against person and property had fallen to levels not seen since the early 1960s. In New York City, crime rates tumbled even lower. The great crime decline reshaped cities, remade the economy, and transformed American politics. Read the rest of this entry »
Sidewalk Clock Outside Barthman Jewelers, Broadway and Maiden Lane, New York City 1947
“That two-month period also coincides with a senior Clinton aide obtaining a special exemption that allowed her to work both as a staff member to the secretary and in a private capacity for Clinton and her husband’s foundation. The Associated Press has sued to obtain emails from Clinton’s account about the aide, Huma Abedin.”
“The status of Clinton’s emails has become an explosive political issue ever since The New York Times revealed that the then-Secretary of State was using a private email server to handle her official correspondence. Cybersecurity experts believe the homebrew system opened Clinton and her colleagues to targeting from online spies.”
That two-month period also coincides with a senior Clinton aide obtaining a special exemption that allowed her to work both as a staff member to the secretary and in a private capacity for Clinton and her husband’s foundation. The Associated Press has sued to obtain emails from Clinton’s account about the aide, Huma Abedin.
The status of Clinton’s emails has become an explosive political issue ever since The New York Times revealed that the then-Secretary of State was using a private email server to handle her official correspondence. Cybersecurity experts believe the homebrew system opened Clinton and her colleagues to targeting from online spies. The State Department and Intelligence Community Inspector Generals have asked the Justice Department to look into possible disclosure of classified information.
Regarding the security situation in Libya, there was plenty for Clinton and her team to discuss via email. On May 22, 2012, the International Red Cross’s Benghazi office was hit by rocket-propelled grenades.
Susan Crabtree reports: The Secret Service’s financial crimes branch just notched a major victory by nabbing the most-wanted computer hacker in the world, a Turkish man accused of running a global operation to hack automated teller machines.
Ercan Findikoglu, 33, is set to be arraigned Wednesday in the U.S. Eastern District Court of New York. U.S. officials successfully extradited him from a German prison after years of negotiations and a legal battle over his release and transfer to U.S. authorities.
Findikoglu allegedly organized criminal operations using hacked debit cards, including one that stole $40 million in cash from ATMs in the span of just 10 hours in February 2013 in New York City and 23 other countries. He used hacked bank debit cards, removing their balance limits, to trigger ATMs to freely release the cash. Read the rest of this entry »
New York City Murders Are On The Rise
Rocco Parascandola, Kerry Burke, Larry McShane report: A dramatic drop in stop-and-frisk encounters has emboldened criminals and made cops more reluctant to take proactive police action, even as murders and shootings are on the rise in the city.
“Everyone is afraid to make stops. No one wants to get jammed up. They’re telling us the stops have to be quality stops. But if you make a stop, and you think it’s a good one, and the guy has nothing on him, is that a good stop?”
— Brooklyn police supervisor
The frightening message — echoed by police supervisors and union leaders — comes as stop-and-frisk encounters are on pace to plunge by 42% this year, with 20,000 fewer street stops.
“What you’re seeing now are the perps carrying their guns because they’re not afraid to carry them. We’ve created an atmosphere where we’ve handcuffed the police. We are sitting back, taking a less proactive approach.”
— Ed Mullins, head of the Sergeants Benevolent Association
There were 11,652 stops across the city through June 3 — projecting to roughly 28,000 for the year, records obtained by the Daily News show. As the number of stops fell, the number of murders spiked 19.5% during the first five months of the year, the number of people shot is up 9.2% and the number of shooting incidents jumped 9%.
“Based on this year’s drop…absent any other factor, you have to ask the question: Are the cops now reluctant to engage?”
“What you’re seeing now are the perps carrying their guns because they’re not afraid to carry them,” said Ed Mullins, head of the Sergeants Benevolent Association. “We’ve created an atmosphere where we’ve handcuffed the police. We are sitting back, taking a less proactive approach.”
Mullins said the city’s criminal element has been operating without fear while cops have been somewhat neutered in the last two years — and he wasn’t the only one to raise the issue.
“Based on this year’s drop . . . absent any other factor, you have to ask the question: Are the cops now reluctant to engage?” wondered one high-ranking police source.
Critics of the NYPD told The News there was no correlation between the two sets of numbers — while stop-and-frisk supporters said the lower frisk numbers led to the higher crime figures.
City cops, citing increased scrutiny from the NYPD’s inspector general, the state attorney general and City Hall, say the cutback on stops is about self-preservation. Read the rest of this entry »
Investigation: Possible Clue, Motive? ‘My wife is a Cheater’ Seen Spray Painted on Colorado Home after Early Morning Explosion, FirePosted: March 10, 2015
ARVADA, Colorado — The words ‘my wife is a cheater’ were clearly visible in spray paint on the outside wall of a home that exploded in a fireball early Tuesday outside Denver Colorado.
Investigators told KDVR-TV they were looking for a man in connection with the fire, but declined to comment further on who he is or whether the graffiti was connected to the explosion.
Officially the cause of the fire is under investigation. Read the rest of this entry »
UPDATE: Miley Cyrus’ porn film pulled from NYC festival
Tim Donnelly writes: For a while now, Miley Cyrus has been inching closer to pornography with her increasingly revealing outfits and scandalous dance moves. Now she’s going to appear in an actual pornography festival.
Miley ain’t so wild after all. After the Post and other outlets reported Monday the singer had submitted a film for the first-ever NYC Porn Film Festival, her representatives have had the film removed from the Bushwick event and its website…(read more)
Cyrus’s short film, “Tongue Tied” — which depicts the almost-nude “Wrecking Ball” singer in bondage gear and sexually suggestive poses — will appear in the NYC Porn Film Festival, which begins in Bushwick on Feb. 27.
“It’s not pure pornography — the video has no sex, and though she writhes around in her underwear, she keeps her nipples covered. But it’s full of bondage imagery: Cyrus dons a blindfold, has her legs constrained by straps and is tied to a chair with only black tape covering her nipples.”
“It’s a pop take on S&M,” festival founder Simon Leahy says. “She’s starting to become more of a contemporary artist.”
Warning: Video NSFW
The video was released online in May, and Cyrus used it during her shows on her Bangerz Tour last year.
“It’s a touch ‘Fifty Shades’ with a pinch of Madonna’s ‘Justify My Love’ video.”
Leahy says they contacted Cadence, the production company that made the film with director Quentin Jones. Read the rest of this entry »
“The exhibition is about great art and a singular place in the American imagination.”
— Curator Robin Jaffee
With its new show, “Coney Island: Visions of an American Dreamland, 1861-2008,” the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art in Hartford, Conn., dives into the oceanfront playground’s role as a muse to painters, photographers, filmmakers and other artists. The museum calls the show the first one dedicated solely to art about Coney Island and the largest museum exhibition to focus entirely on the entertainment mecca in Brooklyn, N.Y. It opens Jan. 31 before starting a three-city U.S. tour.
“There has been nothing that takes people through the ages literally from Coney Island’s beginnings,” said curator Robin Jaffee Frank, who has been working on the show for the past five years. “The exhibition is about great art and a singular place in the American imagination.”
“Such sexually suggestive forms of pleasure mixed voyeurism, exhibitionism and public humiliation into an addictive modern cocktail.”
— Curator Robin Jaffee, Frank, in a catalog essay
Ms. Frank, a Brooklyn native who visited Coney Island often as a child, vividly recalls being terrified by sights like the Cyclops head that hung at the Spook-A-Rama, a 1950s thrill ride that took passengers under a blood-red waterfall and past horror figures.
She grew increasingly fascinated by art about the landmark over her more than two decades at the Yale University Art Gallery, where she became senior associate curator of American paintings and sculpture in 2006. She brought her research for the show with her when the Wadsworth Atheneum hired her as chief curator in 2011. The Yale University Art Gallery is the exhibit’s biggest lender. Read the rest of this entry »
It’s not clear what led to the shooting on East 184th Street and Tiebout Avenue in the Fordham section shortly after 10:30 p.m.
The officers were taken to St. Barnabas Hospital and are expected to be OK, the NYPD said.
A law enforcement source said it appears one officer was shot in the back and the other shot in the arm. Preliminary investigation indicates the anti-crime, plain clothes officers were responding to a burglary call, a police source said.
The suspect fled in a car, crashed it and abandoned it a couple of blocks away from the scene before fleeing on foot, according to preliminary investigation, said the police source. Read the rest of this entry »
“We’ve closed out more than half of them, with nine arrests being made, and we’ll continue to investigate the others.”
New York City is “investigating reports of over 50 incidents of reported threats against [city police] officers since the death of . . two officers this past weekend,” city police commissioner Bill Bratton said….(read more)
Progressives and the Police
‘What do we want? Dead cops!” So chanted marchers at one of the protests organized in the last month against the failure of grand juries to indict white officers in the death of black crime suspects Michael Brown and Eric Garner. On Saturday they got their wish, as a black assailant citing revenge for Brown and Garner traveled from Maryland to murder two cops sitting in their patrol car in Brooklyn.
“America is full of Brinsleys who no longer abide the norms of civilized behavior, if they even know what those norms are. They need but the slightest excuse to take justice into their own hands and go on a rampage.”
“They were quite simply assassinated, targeted for their uniform,” New York Police Commissioner William Bratton said, and so they were. Garner and Brown were resisting arrest, but the two young officers never had a chance even to pull their guns. They had been marked for death near a high-crime housing project they were trying to protect against criminal predators.
“Especially in urban America, the police walk that line between civilization and mayhem every day.”
Mayor Bill de Blasio , Attorney General Eric Holder and President Obama were all quick to condemn the shooting. And let’s stipulate that no one other than the alleged shooter, Ismaaiyl Brinsley, is responsible for pulling the trigger. Chased into the subway by police, he then shot himself. Read the rest of this entry »
‘If you visited from Mars in the last few months, you would think police do no good in society at all”Posted: December 21, 2014
There have been at least three ambushes this year of law-enforcement officials that garnered national attention. In June Las Vegas police officers Alyn Beck, 41, and Igor Soldo, 31 were ambushed as they sat in a restaurant. One of the suspects in that shooting died in a gunbattle with authorities, and his wife committed suicide.
The assassination of two New York City police officers this weekend has emboldened police and their supporters to lash out at weeks of nationwide protest and criticism that they say have left police more vulnerable.
“This senseless murder of two of New York’s finest further exemplifies the dangerous political climate in which all members of law enforcement, nationwide, now find themselves. Not since the political unrest of the 1960s have police officers been so targeted.”
— Baltimore police union President Gene Ryan, in a posting on the Baltimore Fraternal Order of Police website
Police are investigating social-media posts by the apparent assailant in the point-blank fatal shootings Saturday of the two officers who were sitting in their patrol car in Brooklyn. In them, he allegedly talked about killing officers in retaliation for the deaths of Eric Garner on Staten Island, N.Y., and Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., this summer in confrontations with police.
Experts on law enforcement said the demonstrations that followed grand jury decisions not to charge the officers in those cases have strained police morale across the U.S. as officers have been forced to defend their tactics, then deploy in big numbers to demonstrations against those tactics.
“This senseless murder of two of New York’s finest further exemplifies the dangerous political climate in which all members of law enforcement, nationwide, now find themselves,” Baltimore police union President Gene Ryan said in a posting on the Baltimore Fraternal Order of Police website. “Not since the political unrest of the 1960s have police officers been so targeted.”
“If you visited from Mars in the last few months, you would think police do no good in society at all”
— Eugene O’Donnell, a professor of law and police studies at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City
On Sunday, a somber-faced New York Mayor Bill de Blasio , who has come under withering criticism from the city’s police union after the killings, attended Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Manhattan, flanked in a pew by his wife and Police Commissioner William Bratton . “We are in solidarity with you,” New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan told the public officials. Read the rest of this entry »
Two uniformed NYPD officers were shot dead Saturday afternoon as they sat in their marked police car on a Brooklyn street corner — in what investigators believe was a crazed gunman’s assassination-style mission to avenge Eric Garner and Michael Brown.
“We’re all in this together.”
Mayor De Blasio, to grieving cops
“No we’re not.”
One of the grieving cops
“It’s an execution,” one law-enforcement source said of the 3 p.m. shooting of police officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos.
The tragic heroes were working overtime as part of an anti-terrorism drill in Bedford-Stuyvesant when they were shot point-blank in the head by the lone gunman, identified by sources as Ismaaiyl Brinsley, 28, who had addresses in Georgia and Brooklyn.
Moments after killing the two officers, he too was dead, having turned the gun on himself on a nearby subway platform as cops closed in.
“I’m Putting Wings on Pigs Today,” a person believed to be the gunman wrote on Instagram in a message posted just three hours before the officers were shot.
“They Take 1 Of Ours…Let’s Take 2 of Theirs,” the post continued, signing off with, “This May Be My Final Post.”
The Instagram page included an image of a silver automatic handgun with a wooden handle. Another image showed the same camouflage pants and distinctive blue sneakers worn by the gunman as his body was carried from the scene on a stretcher.
He used the hashtag #ShootThePolice, along with two other hashtags referencing Garner and Brown.
Brinsley walked up to the cops’ patrol car at the corner of Myrtle and Tompkins avenues, approaching from the sidewalk. Read the rest of this entry »
Police Officer Wenjian Liu and Police Officer Rafael Ramos were shot and killed from ambush while sitting in their patrol car at the intersection of Myrtle Avenue and Thompkins Avenue in Bedford-Stuyvesant.
Both officers were participating in an anti-terrorism drill when a subject walked up their patrol car and opened fire with a handgun, striking them both in the head and upper body multiple times. Other officers immediately pursued the the subject into a nearby subway station where the man committed suicide.
The subject was a gang member from Baltimore, Maryland, who had traveled to New York City specifically to ambush police officers. The man had published his intentions on social media prior to the shooting.
Officer Liu had served with the New York City Police Department for four years. Read the rest of this entry »
Federalism is supposed to undergird America’s system of handling disasters, particularly natural disasters. State, local, and private organizations should play the dominant role. Today, however, growing federal intervention is undermining the role of private institutions and the states in handling disasters.
In a new paper, Cato’s Director of Tax Policy Studies, Chris Edwards looks at the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA)’s response to major disasters, and argues that policymakers should reverse course and begin cutting FEMA.
In The Federal Emergency Management Agency: Floods, Failures, and Federalism, Edwards argues that Congress should cut FEMA’s multi-billion dollar budget to end the agency’s long-running record of disorganized and wasteful spending. Edwards determines the agency’s large and growing budget consists mainly of counterproductive and inefficient aid programs that should be eliminated. Instead, he argues that state and local governments, and the private sector, should fund disaster preparedness and relief.
“Ultimately,” says Edwards, “the agency should be closed down by ending aid programs for disaster preparedness and relief and privatizing flood insurance.”
FEMA’s performance in disaster response is historically plagued by poor decision-making, wasteful spending, and excessive bureaucracy. FEMA spends roughly $2.5 billion a year on grants to state and local governments for disaster preparedness but these funds are often wasted on low-value activities. Cities have used preparedness grants to buy hovercrafts, underwater robots, and other fancy equipment that are rarely used. Read the rest of this entry »
Modern Meadow’s CEO explains how he’ll culture leather and make steak from giant vats brewing muscle and skin cells
Modern Meadow, a startup based in Brooklyn, New York, is aiming to commercialize leather and meat products that are not made from slaughtered animals but brewed in cell-culture vats. If it works, and if the market embraces the resulting products, it would lead to vast savings in water, land, and energy use associated with livestock production.
“Ah, the Hannibal Lecter question. Could we do it? Of course it could be done. But we take bioethics seriously, and it’s not something we would do. “
Company CEO and cofounder Andras Forgacs—who previously cofounded Organovo, a company that uses 3-D printers to create human tissue for biomedical applications—spoke today at EmTech and later sat down with David Talbot, chief correspondent of MIT Technology Review.
What’s the idea behind Modern Meadow?
The company was founded to expand the ideas from biomedical tissue engineering: if we can grow skin, can we make leather? If we can grow muscle, can we make meat? We’ve now done so—and are working with chefs and leather artisans to perfect our materials. We’re a materials company, and our near-term focus is on leather. You want to make sure we have high quality and have achieved the right kind of material, and then develop a process that can scale.
But you’ve also been making batches of snacks you are calling “steak chips” made from cow muscle cells, with flavors like teriyaki and shiitake mushroom. You didn’t bring any. When will they be ready?
We’re doing private tastings but are still are refining the recipe and developing ways to scale production. We have to think about whether this is the project we take to market...(read more)
Robert Rauschenberg’s ‘Collection’ & the Case of the Four Boys
Andrew Scott Cooper writes: Murderous deeds have inspired artists like Caravaggio, Jacques-Louis David and Paul Cézanne to produce some of their best-known works. But has there ever been a case of an artwork helping solve a real-life murder mystery?
In their confession statements, the four boys admitted to a litany of other offenses and unsolved crimes that had panicked their neighborhood over the summer: punching and kicking to death a second man, Reinhold Ulrickson, on a Brooklyn street corner 10 days earlier; pouring gasoline over a third man and setting him alight; horsewhipping two young women in a public park late at night; and assaulting numerous others who had the misfortune to encounter them. Prosecutors expressed shock and bewilderment.
“I can’t understand what would make boys do such terrible things,” said the Kings County District Attorney. “They apparently had no reason except the thrill they got.
”Sixty years ago this month, on August 16, 1954, four Jewish teenagers dubbed the Kill-for-Thrills gang were accused of slaying black factory worker Willard Menter under the Williamsburg Bridge. According to police accounts, Brooklyn youths Jack Koslow, 18, Melvin Mittman, 17, Jerome Lieberman, 17, and Robert Trachtenberg, 15, confessed to beating and kicking their victim, burning his feet with lit cigarettes, and then dragging him to the end of South Fifth Street where he was beaten again to the point of unconsciousness, thrown in the river and left to drown.
The so-called “Nights of Horror” crime spree and the story of four good boys gone bad shattered the complacency of an American summer. Overnight, Koslow, Mr. Mittman, Lieberman and Trachtenberg earned notoriety as the human face of juvenile delinquency. Articles on the boys and their exploits appeared in mainstream news publications like Time, Newsweek, Look and The New York Times, which splashed the case on its front page. So great was the media frenzy that by the end of the year Hollywood gossip queen Hedda Hopper suggested the boys were the inspiration for James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause.
The sensational murder was front-page news.
From Mental Floss: On July 17, 1902, Willis Haviland Carrier finished drawing up plans for what is today considered the first modern air conditioning system. It was installed in a printing business in Brooklyn in 1903, and in 1906, Carrier patented a refined version, called “Apparatus for Treating Air.”
By 1936, Carrier predicted that in the future, “the average businessman will rise, pleasantly refreshed, having slept in an air-conditioned room, he will travel in an air-conditioned train, and toil in an air-conditioned office, store, or factory—or dine in an air-conditioned restaurant. In fact, the only time he will know anything about heat waves or arctic blasts will be when he exposes himself to the natural discomforts of out-of-doors.” Read the rest of this entry »
Ex-NYPD Officer Michael Setiawan Arrested for Spraying Vulgar Anti-Semitic Graffiti in Jewish Brooklyn NeighborhoodPosted: May 4, 2014
NEW YORK (AP) — A former New York City police officer was arrested on charges he spray-painted anti-Semitic profanities on cars and buildings in a mostly Jewish Brooklyn neighborhood — including the front doors of a religious elementary school.
“This was not a victimless crime. We have many Holocaust survivors here…”
— state Assemblyman Dov Hikind
Michael Setiawan was picked up before dawn Sunday after police received a 911 call on Saturday evening about the swastikas, and other anti-Semitic graffiti in Borough Park.
The 36-year-old faces charges of criminal mischief and aggravated harassment as hate crimes.
Setiawan was a city officer until 2007, serving in Brooklyn’s 69th precinct in the Canarsie neighborhood, police said.
The words spray-painted in red were found on 15 vehicles and four buildings near the Bnos Zion synagogue and school run by the ultra-Orthodox Bobov community. A surveillance camera at the school captured a suspect; police blurred out the face in the video. They would not immediately say whether the man was Setiawan.
Setiawan and his parents share a home in Queens. His father told The Associated Press that he was awakened at 5 a.m. Sunday by a call from police. He then went to his son’s room and roused him. Minutes later, a detective showed up to arrest Setiawan, said his father, Thomas Setiawan.
“I asked my son, ‘What’s wrong? What happened? Is anybody hurt?'” the Indonesian immigrant said in a telephone interview, his voice rising with emotion in heavily accented English. “He said ‘No, don’t worry, nobody’s hurt.'”
After bashing The Onion earlier, it seems they’ve unexpectedly redeemed their street creed…
BROOKLYN, NY—Acknowledging that the man’s right-wing views are more nuanced than one might expect, 36-year-old liberal Diana Hardwick confided to reporters Tuesday that her conservative acquaintance Brady Daniels is, quite frustratingly, not racist. “We got to talking about immigration, and I really wanted him to undermine his argument for stricter border controls by saying something disparaging of Latinos, but apparently his opinions are based entirely on national security issues instead of race—which is super irritating,” Hardwick said of Daniels, who reportedly describes himself as a “strong conservative” on fiscal issues but, annoyingly, exhibits no racial biases. “It would be so much easier if I could just write him off as a bigot, but as far as I can tell he harbors no resentment or disdain toward people of color. For God’s sake, we argued every issue from states’ rights to income disparity but nope, he didn’t say anything even tacitly racist. Not once.” Hardwick later concluded that her acquaintance’s opposition to most of President Obama’s policies meant he was probably “close enough” to count as a racist.
This is why a future president might finally do away with the practice of nominating a top political donor to be an ambassador.
Here’s how the White House described wealthy executive George Tsunis when President Barack Obama nominated him to be the top U.S. diplomat in Norway in September 2013:
“George J. Tsunis is the Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Chartwell Hotels, LLC. From 1999 to 2009, Mr. Tsunis was of counsel at Rivkin Radler, LLP and served as partner since 2005. Mr. Tsunis was Special Counsel to the Town of Huntington Committee on Open Space Preservation as well as Counsel to the Dix Hills Water District from 2003 to 2009. From 1998 to 1999, he practiced law at Goldberg & Cohen in Brooklyn, NY. From 1996 to 1998, he was a Legislative Attorney at the New York City Council. Mr. Tsunis received a B.A. from New York University and a J.D. from St. John’s University School of Law.”
Emphasis mine…from New York Post:
…Cops found five empty glassine envelopes in a garbage can, two more under the bed and one on a table in the apartment, where Hoffman — who has repeatedly struggled with substance abuse — was living recently, sources said.
Cops also found a charred spoon in the kitchen sink, sources say.
“He was shooting up in the bathroom,” a law-enforcement source said.
The envelopes were marked “Ace of Spades,” which sources said is a brand of heroin that hasn’t been seen on the streets since around 2008 in Brooklyn.
There was no note, and Hoffman’s death is believed to be accidental…
I’m pretty sure Ace of Spades HQ has no connection to the brand. But I had a mental image of an envelope with that logo on it (shown below) as the last thing the actor saw before he perished, of an overdose.
Speaking of Ace…
Does the MacInoe photo, shown here represent the Brooklyn heroin baggie type similar to the one found in Hoffman’s Greenwich Village apartment? It’s unclear, but certainly possible. The photographer was also a consumer (addict) he has an interesting photo essay here:
“The images in this series are of heroin baggies collected years ago during a period of addiction. I became intrigued by the typography and design of the glassine envelopes used to package dope, stamped with references to popular culture like Twilight, Crooklyn and New Jack City. Dealers branded and marketed their product like entrepreneurs in any business, pairing names like Dead Medicine with a skull and crossbones to appeal to risk-takers, or an airplane labeled First Class to give the illusion of grandeur…
Is it Legal? Of course not…
ALASTAIR BLAND reports: Within days after each season premiere and season finale of the Discovery Channel’s reality show “Moonshiners,” they come — a small but perceptible wave of people — to purchase suspiciously large amounts of corn, sugar and hardy strains of fermenting yeast at Austin Homebrew Supply.
“We know what they’re up to,” says Chris Ellison, the manager of the Texas store.
That is, it’s obvious they’re planning to ferment the sugars from grain or fruit juice into alcohol, then distill the resulting mid-strength beverage into high-alcohol hooch.
Making spirits at home with plans to drink it is against federal law. Only with the right permits may a person make ethanol at home, either for use strictly as fuel, or as part of a commercial endeavor — like launching a craft spirits company, of which hundreds have opened nationwide in recent years.
Yet more and more people seem to be making home moonshine, according to sources.
Kevin Sheehan, Natasha Velez and Natalie O’Neil report: A wild flash mob stormed and trashed a Brooklyn mall, causing so much chaos that the shopping center was forced to close during post-Christmas sales, sources said Friday.
More than 400 crazed teens — who mistakenly thought the rapper Fabolous would perform — erupted into brawls all over Kings Plaza Shopping Center in Mill Basin on Thursday at 5 p.m., sources said.
The troublemakers looted and ransacked several stores as panicked shoppers ran for the exits and clerks scrambled to pull down metal gates.
“I was begging them to stop. There were a lot of kids, hundreds of kids . . . [Security] would chase them out one door and they would come back in another door,” said Abu Taleb, 31, a clerk at the kiosk Candy Plaza 2. “I’ve been here seven years, and I have never seen anything like this before.”
Some of the teens staged a game of “knockout” on the top floor — and one may have been carrying a gun, sources said.
“They were playing the ‘knockout’ game,” said Shante, a 21-year-old perfume merchant, in reference to a violent trend in which teens try to knock out an unsuspecting victim with a single punch.
“People were getting really scared,” she said.
The mall was shuttered at around 7 p.m. for roughly an hour and has since issued a temporary “no teens” rule, in which anyone under 21 must be accompanied by an adult, police sources said.
Growing reports of the ‘knockout game’ are forcing police to take a closer look at racial motivations while also being careful to not spark copycat attacks.
Patrik Jonsson writes: Hate crime charges against a black Brooklyn man for assaulting a white man could raise the stakes over what to do about the so-called “knockout game,” where primarily young black men surprise white victims with a rain of punches – sometimes for a $5 bet.
Police have been receiving reports that indicate a wave of “knockout game” incidents primarily in the Northeast, and some police are now beginning to draw connections between individual reports. “I think it’s very real,” Sgt. Tom Connellan told the New York Times. “As opposed to a motive for assault, be it anger or robbery, this is strictly for a game.”
The apparent object of the game is to pick an unsuspecting victim and knock them out with a punch. The perpetrators are often described as ethically challenged teenagers, but the potential racial element has begun to be noticed more broadly by community leaders in places like Brooklyn.
Quoted by a local TV news station, Brooklyn Rabbi Yaacov Behrmann said that he believes the assaults are part of “a disturbing game by some African-American teens.”
AJ Marechal reports: IDW Publishing has launched a new arm, IDW Entertainment, that is devoted to developing TV properties based on IDW’s catalog of comic books and graphic novels. David Ozer will lead the division.
Titles that IDW is actively developing for television include comic books “Life Undead,” “Brooklyn Animal Control” and “V Wars.” While networks are not attached to the projects yet, creatives have already boarded the development efforts, with Chris Pollack co-exec producing “Life Undead” with showrunner Paul Zbyszewski.