Hey Greenpoint, it’s time to get out the vote! Traditionally, elections are held on Tuesdays but this week’s Gubernatorial Primary will take place on Thursday, 9/13 (TOMORROW) so as not to conflict with commemorations of 9/11.
The old adage tells us that “you can’t fight city hall.” Often, in New York, it can feel like it’s residents vs. the City, but sometimes, Gotham and its elected officials are on the same page. One of those times is during participatory budgeting, when “community members directly decide how to spend part of a public budget.” It’s a rare instance when the City Council gives New Yorkers “Real Money. Real Power.” to improve their communities. So get ready to wield that power, because the next participatory budgeting vote will take place April 7th- April 15th!
There’s a million dollars on the line, and you can vote for up to 5 projects that will receive the funds. The proposed projects call for improvements to schools, parks, libraries, public housing, and other public or community spaces subject to “discretionary funds.” All projects were suggested by community members, and the winners will be chosen by the community!
Out of 150 proposed projects, neighborhood volunteers whittled the choices down to 9 projects you can vote on, based on “equity, feasibility, cost, and need.” And it’s not to late to help out! If you’d like to volunteer as a poll worker, you can RSVP here!
In 1893, one of the greatest upsets in New York State electoral history occurred locally when a bartender defeated one of the most powerful men in Albany. I have written previously about the infamous local politician Patrick McCarren who obtained for North Brooklyn the park that bears his name, and the Williamsburg Bridge.
Now a forgotten character, State Senator McCarren, though effective in bringing home pork to North Brooklyn, was in his day one of the most breathtakingly corrupt politicians in the long history of corrupt New York politicians. One of the first corporate lobbyists in American history, McCarren was reviled for his shamelessness in helping Standard Oil and the Sugar Trust at the expense of the public good. The New York Press in 1904 summed up what many reformers thought of the senator: “We shrink from even the thought of what would happen to our national institutions and ideals if its Pat McCarren’s should succeed in cornering the nation at the ballot box.” Sadly, looking at politics today, McCarren seems a very contemporary figure; however McCarren, was defeated by a non-politician in an electoral shocker. Continue reading →
Aria Jay & Rhino Parade are hosting a postcard writing party tonight (Tuesday, 10/24) at girl-powered giftshop Bulletin Market(145 Wythe Ave), from 6-8pm. They’ll provide protest postcards, pens, and addresses, and you should bring your lovely resisting selves! Plus rosé, cookies, and a a kick ass girl power play list 👯💪
Last night, local historian, teacher, and author Geoffrey Cobb delighted a full house at Shayz Lounge (130 Franklin Street) with a selection of readings from his latest book, The King of Greenpoint. The book is about Peter J. McGuinness, the man for whom McGuinness Boulevard is named.
McGuinness was born on Eagle Street in 1888, and despite having no high school eduction and being a 300-pound lumber handler and blue collar laborer, managed to become one of the most influential politicians Greenpoint has ever seen.
Through pure charisma, lots of street smarts, and an ardent dedication to his everyday, working class constituents, McGuinness was able to get elected as an alderman in 1919, thus beginning a long and rich political career. Continue reading →
Want to support your favorite candidate and get some sweet art to hang on your apartment walls? A neighborhood sidewalk fair—featuring artwork from dozens of well-known contemporary artists—will raise money for Hillary Clinton and the down-ticket Senate and Congressional candidates this weekend in Williamburg.
HUMBOLDT STREET FOR HILLARY: DEM JAM 2016will take place from 2-6 pm on Humboldt Street between Skillman and Jackson in Williamsburg, 3 blocks from the Graham Avenue L train stop this Sunday, September 25.
This charming D.I.Y. event will feature all kinds of homemade food (including Exotic Hot Dogs: Chicago, Kimchi & Muffaletta, Vegetable Ban Mi, BBQ Brisket & Carnitas Buns
Fruit & Veggie Skewers, A Cornucopia of Homemade Baked Goods and Candies, Togarashi Popcorn, Little Kids’ Lemonade), beverages and bake sale items, strolling fiddlers and ukelele players, beanbag games designed by artist David Sandlin, beautiful crafts by Renee Riccardo, Rhonda Wall, Robin Goldwasser and others, t-shirts designed by Wendy White and silkscreened on-site by Kayrock Screenprinting, art book sale by Paul Laster, and a silent auction of works by many contemporary artists. Continue reading →
“This novel will help you survive this election season,” Greenpoint resident Michael Abramson, author of the political thriller, Rebecca Tree, writes. Set in the not-so-distant future, “The American political system is trapped in a death spiral. In an increasingly polarized country, rapidly rising seawater separates ‘wet’ states from ‘dry’ states. Parts of South Florida surrender to the sea as carcasses of once-chic beachfront hotels poke out from the ocean floor. ‘Guest’ agricultural workers from Mexico hand-pollinate fruit trees and vegetable crops in a desperate effort to maintain the country’s food supply. California’s once plentiful fruits are now as rare as caviar in post-Tsarist Russia.”
Out of this chaos emerges Rebecca Tree, the rebellious granddaughter of America’s most powerful politician, Merewether Tree. A successful inventor and businesswoman, Rebecca’s life is marked by a string of tragedies. Her parents died in a plane crash when she was two, and her twin sister Allison passed before her fourth birthday. Determined to honor the memories of the ones she lost, Rebecca’s personal pain propels her into a life of accomplishment.”
Released in March, the book has already garnered 4.5 stars on Amazon. I spoke with Abramson about what motivated the novel, the places in which it takes place (including our very own Greenpoint), and how he shaped his characters.
That evening while sipping on a beer at Brouwerij Lane, a call with a NJ area code appeared on my phone. It was Stephen Levin and he was pretty insulted by our decision to run that post. I stood outside in the cold while he explained to me (in many words) what I have invited him to share with you.
Yes we have been extremely critical of him and will continue to be as long as he makes decisions that we feel are not in the best interest of Greenpoint. I did offer him the opportunity to explain himself here. After, I invite readers to reply in the comment section. (Keep it classy.)
Bill, I say this as someone who has supported your campaign since before you were thought of as a viable candidate: I have never been closer to voting for your opponent than I am after watching your performance tonight.