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Archive for the ‘Politics or: the art of looking for trouble’ Category

The MTA Released Alternative Travel Plans for L Train Shutdown and They’re Awful

New Yorkers are fearing the impending April 2019 shutdown of the Manhattan to Brooklyn L subway line. The contract for Hurricane Sandy repairs spanning the train tracks between 8th Avenue and Bedford Ave, Williamsburg, was awarded two years ago and plan to last at least 15 months, ending by August 2020.

The issue has been a hot topic among local politicians who are generally pushing for alternative travel routes including other subway lines, a new inter-borough bus line, and expansion of select bus services.

The L train services over 400,000 commuters daily with at least 250,000 depending the line to travel between the connecting boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn.

So what’s New York state going to do about suddenly losing this essential subway line? Well, the MTA released a 38-page PowerPoint presentation explaining their plans and they’re not pretty: http://web.mta.info/sandy/pdf/Canarsie-6-08-17_website.pdf

train lines

  • 75% – 85% of commuters will be shunted to other subway lines. The M and J lines connecting Manhattan and Brooklyn will bear the brunt the burden, with the G suffering on its connections going up to Queens.
  • The MTA admits 75% is the ideal target to avoid overcrowding. They have not yet released specific plans on how frequently trains will be running to accommodate all the new riders.
  • Only between 5% – 15% of riders are estimated to use a proposed inter-borough shuttle bus service.  This is where plans get messy. THERE IS NO DIRECT SHUTTLEBUS ROUTE PLANNED IN BETWEEN 8TH AVENUE AND BEDFORD AVE.

Bus Route.png

  • As you can see, the shuttle buses will run from Grand St. L stop to no further than Prince St./Broadway.  This means if you want to get from Bedford Avenue to 8th Avenue you will have to transfer 3 times in between shuttle buses, subways, and select bus service.
  • The rest of anticipated ridership will consist of ferries, bicycles, and taxis.  The MTA has not yet released plans for increases in ferry ridership.

The Democratic Primaries this year fall on September 12, 2017.  When you vote please pay close attention to the travel agendas of your city council candidates.  Hopefully, local politicians can address this mess of a plan and fight to keep New York City’s subways running effectively and efficiently.

Click here to register to vote.

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Meet My Cactus: Carlos Danger

August 4, 2013 2 comments

I bought a new cactus with my roomy. He has funny leaves. (Cactuses are mostly boys, right?) He is replacing Prometheus Maximus, the single, most boring cactus ever, who died tragically and unexpectedly after being carelessly sprayed by the bug exterminator.

I named the new cactus Carlos Danger.

He is an African Milk Tree Plant, according to Google, and according to my friend, also has poisonous sap.

Note to self: Do not ever ever lick Carlos Danger.

Background information:

Previous posts on this blog re Carlos Danger:

Happy Second Birthday to My Failed Anthony Weiner Tumblr!


My Failed “I am Anthony Weiner” Project. What I Learned about Social Movements.

I’ve actually met the Anthony Weiner press manager involved in the other mini-scandal. But I don’t want to link to articles about it because I’ve actually been caught on here talking about people I know “behind their back” before; you can go look it up yourself if you want. (She seemed like a pleasant person at the time.)

I also knew one of Weiner’s former key interns who has since quit the campaign in shame and heavy emotional resignation. That reminds me of something Weiner himself should do…

I think he’ll make it through the run-off, but not by much.

NY Times Published “Rock Star” Picture of Boston Bomber 2 Months Ago and No One Cared

America’s Sweetheart, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev

Matt Taibbi (<3 ❤ <3!) posted a defense of The Rolling Stone cover that people suddenly care about:

But Rolling Stone has actually been in the hard news/investigative reporting business since its inception, from Hunter S. Thompson to Carl Bernstein to Bill Greider back in the day to Tim Dickinson, Michael Hastings, Mark Boal, Janet Reitman and myself in recent years.

One could even go so far as to say that in recent years, when investigative journalism has been so dramatically de-emphasized at the major newspapers and at the big television news networks, Rolling Stone‘s role as a source of hard-news reporting has been magnified. In other words, we’re more than ever a hard news outlet in a business where long-form reporting is becoming more scarce.

Not everybody knows this, however, which, again, is understandable. But that’s where the confusion comes in. It’s extremely common for news outlets to put terrorists and other such villains on the covers of their publications, and this is rarely controversial – the issue is how it’s done.

EXACTLY!  Taibbi notes that The New York Times ran the exact same picture in May. Front cover. No one cared. It was a non-issue. When I had money, I subscribed to the Rolling Stone just because Matt Taibbi and Michael Hastings (RIP) were so fucking tight as investigative journalists.

I apologize for all the enthusiasm. I’m mixing gin and politics and blogging while studying epigenetics. I might edit this post in the morning.

Conservative Watch: Josh Barro

July 18, 2013 1 comment

Josh Barro is the only conservative columnist who has been able to give me pause and keep me engaged and thinking on Twitter. All my favorite libertarian columnists happen to be gay (Greenwald). Not sure what’s up with that.

Josh Barro Josh Barro

@jbarro

Politics Editor at Business Insider. Crotchety young man. jbarro@businessinsider.com

Via Wikipedia:

Joshua A. Barro is an American opinion journalist and the current politics editor at Business Insider… He has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Harvard.

Time named Barro’s Twitter feed one of “The 140 Best Twitter Feeds of 2013”, one of ten in the Politics category. In 2012, Forbes selected him as one of the “30 Under 30” media “brightest stars under the age of 30,” and David Brooks listed him as part of the, “vibrant and increasingly influential center-right conversation.”

Barro describes himself as a neoliberal and a Republican, but has expressed opposition to many policies of the Republican party. He has been described by others as conservative, liberal and libertarian.

Barro lives in Queens, NY. His father is noted macroeconomist Robert Barro. Barro is openly gay and has written in support of gay marriage.

The Cinematic Leaker

“People are indeed far more interested in Snowden’s own saga then the programs he revealed.” Heh. Sounds about right. America.

The Dish

Laura Bennett flags a hilariously overacted Snowden biopic:

She considers the dramatic appeal of whistleblowers:

Some of these characters, while prickly, were redeemed by the moral straightforwardness of their crusade; others were clearly propelled by murkier intentions. Their onscreen treatment reflects the full spectrum of cultural attitudes toward whistleblowers: derision, suspicion, tentative admiration for the sheer commitment to a cause. … From Snowden’s earliest interview there were echoes of [“Enlightened” protagonist] Amy Jellicoe: half prophet, half loose cannon. There was something of Amy’s deluded narcissism in his ridiculous claim that he was going public with his identity so as not to make the story about himself, while the media cloud around him swirled. And like Amy he seemed partly driven by the numbness and the tedium of office life, his own sense of being a drone in the service of evil.

Meanwhile, Brad Plumer charts evidence that people are indeed…

View original post 125 more words

Clantily Scad’s Prediction For President 2016. (Made in 2013.)

I know it’s really early, but I’d rather look super impressive and have bragging rights three years later or shrug and say the signs were misleading.

I called Paul Ryan for Romney’s VP on this blog long before his stock jumped on Intrade and long after most people were talking up Marco Rubio. I was briefly a political science major, so I know the basics, but I’ve also canvassed for the Democrats and think I have a pretty decent sense of people’s motivations.

I honestly believe that there’s going to be an epic Chris Christie versus Cory Booker showdown for President in 2016. I think it will be tight but I bet Cory Booker will win.

Other major players in the Republican GOP primary are going to be Marco Rubio and Bobby Jindal. Rand Paul will be around, but mostly serve as the libertarian placeholder for his dad. Rubio will be second banana to Christie, but will not be able to surpass Christie’s aggressiveness.

Other major players in the Democratic primary are going to be Elizabeth Warren and maybe Kirsten Gillibrand. (I’m a New Yorker now, so I’m now more familiar with Gillibrand.) I wish Michelle Obama was running too, because she is super smart and super fly, but she doesn’t seem to be interested in heading that way. It’s still nice to see the progressive ladies coming out into the spotlight to grab the torch from Hillary Clinton.

I do not think Hillary is going to run. Right now, this is not a popular opinion among the liberal wonks, but I’ve been thinking it for a while.

She’s tired of the infighting and made statements about how tired she is in the past. I know politicians can backtrack on their statements. But I’m really getting the sense that she just wants to chill for a while and focus her ambitions on knitting and enjoying retirement. Which is totally reasonable; she’s 65 now.

Nate Silver sounds like he’s leaning the same way with me on the Hillary Prediction: “She doesn’t really like the campaign all that much.”

Anyway, I’ve written briefly before about how much of a badass Cory Booker is of a candidate. He’s relatively young for Presidential ambitions, but so was an inexperienced Senator named Barack Obama. I think Cory Booker will be great.

Now that Intrade is done, does anyone know where I can legally profit from my political acumen?

Where is Edward Snowden?

WaPo breaks down the latest Edward Snowden/NSA news.

U.S. charges Edward Snowden with espionage in leaks about NSA surveillance programs

Federal prosecutors have filed a sealed criminal complaint against Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who leaked a trove of documents about top-secret surveillance programs, and the United States has asked Hong Kong to detain him on a provisional arrest warrant, according to U.S. officials.

Where is Edward Snowden now? Specifically in Hong Kong? They don’t know.

But I have a guess.

Image

The Giant Rubber Duck. Hong Kong.

It’s brilliant. C’mon.

Well, brilliant until it moves back to US. How much would that suck. If he fell asleep in the duck and wakes up back here.