While much of America watched with pleasure as President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama swirled around the dance floor at one of the 10 parties they would attend that night, several hundred revelers at The Southampton Inn’s Inaugural Ball cheered with enthusiasm and rattled noisemakers. It could just as easily have been a New Year’s Eve party for all the joy this traditionally Republican town took in laying aside partisan politics and coming together in celebration of the dawning of a new era.
Council Member John C. Liu introduced three pieces of anti-idling legislation yesterday. Two of the pieces strengthened existing laws, while Intro. 631-A, for which Liu is the prime sponsor, will reduce the legal idle time in front of a school from three minutes to one minute.
Members of the Transport Workers Union manned subway stops in Brooklyn today, handing out flyers protesting service cuts in the MTA’s 2009 budget, warning that the lack of service will have dire effects on both riders and the economy.
The staggering attention to Barack Obama’s Presidential Inauguration has reached even the cobblestone streets of SoHo. In stores and shops, restaurants and bars, offices and residences nearly all televisions were tuned to the inauguration.
More city Democrats will be seeking the unglamorous positions of Comptroller and Public Advocate than Mayor this year. The reason is fairly obvious. Democrats will fill the two non-mayoral offices. But standing in front of City Hall this fall will be Daddy Warbucks and his $60 million bankroll, his candidacy due to the dispensation granted him by the City Council.
We are going to miss The Cheyenne. The closing of its doors last April was made bearable by the hope that it would be relocated to a different part of the city—it being a diner and thus portable and all. And indeed, plans surfaced to move it to Red Hook.
Most of us want to see Bush leave the White House yesterday, not a week from yesterday. His time as our president is something we’d like to forget, but that would be a mistake; we don’t want his errors to be repeated. Some awareness is needed. Yes, indeed—serious, sober reflection is called for in these final days.
Twenty-four years ago Jonathan Pollard was indicted on one count of passing classified information to an ally (Israel), without intent to harm the United States. The usual sentence for such a crime is 2-4 years. Neither the American or Israeli governments wanted to get involved in a long trial, so a plea bargain was offered and accepted. The problem is that Pollard is still in jail; he was sentenced to life with no hope of parole.