Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Are We Represented?

The word 'politics' is derived from the word 'poly', meaning 'many', and the word 'ticks', meaning 'blood sucking parasites'.
Larry Hardiman

From the Community Board on up, if you live in SoHo (or other parts of Downtown), there comes a point when you have to ask whether you really have any political representatives. Of course, this seems like a ridiculous question. We have Assemblymembers, City Councilmembers, State Senators, Borough President, Mayor, and a few Congressional officeholders – a group of people who run things for us. Right?

If they actually represent us, ask yourself this question:
When was the last time you spoke to any of them or was able to get anyone on the phone to ask for something to be taken care of?

Like, the billboards in SoHo, erected by the biggest media companies that contribute heavily to campaigns. Companies such as ClearChannel and VanWagner,

Like the assault on affordable housing -- ignored by HPD, Department of Buildings, Mayor’s Office, Borough President’s Office, and the City Council. Lip-service and press releases abound. But, how many tenants have these politicians helped? Margaret Chin, recently elected to the City Council for her support of Housing activism, has recently been unresponsive on this issue.

Like the knock-off trade on Canal Street (hand-bags, watches) run by Asian gangs and sold on the sidewalks by Nigerian shills with impunity – and which criminalize our streets.

The Community Board is a political club, which has little contact with residents, except for a few issues that threaten Greenwich Village and owes complete fealty to the Borough President – who has complete control over who is appointed. It bears no resemblance to democracy.

The City Council is owned and operated at the whim of the Mayor-King who has the fealty of The Speaker, Christine Quinn.
The existence of Trump SoHo speaks for their commitment to any Downtown resident. We were all sold out. Only Tony Avella, among a few others, had the courage to demonstrate before the construction crews arrived on that hated project.

From State Senator to Assembly member, from Mayor to City Councilmember, we have representatives who cannot even commit to saving guerrilla art in SoHo, tearing down the billboards, or making the job of crossing the streets safer.
The only business taken seriously is campaign donations and maintaining their jobs.

Is there a Tea Party in the audience?