As far as I know Noah “Nick” Perry was never a math teacher-and I have known him for about 20 years. He is educated, resilient, crafty, and tenacious. Over the years he has also demonstrated some political ambition, and he has never been afraid to articulate it. Back in 1998, when I was leading an insurgent charge in Brooklyn, he and I almost came to blows at the Board of Elections on Adams Street. He was attempting to knock one of our guys off the ballot, and while overhearing his conversation, I found him to be abusive and threatening (verbally), thus we got into each other’s face- so to speak. Now this was uncharacteristic of Nick, since he is usually mild-mannered and does possess the desired decorum of an elected official, however he is Jamaican–born, and there is a tendency amongst most Jamaican men not to back-down when confronted, for fear of being labeled a “pussy”. Maybe that fear has kept Nick in the race for the 11th Congressional District all this time. Very few people think that he has a chance of winning, and even a third grade student knows, that when you run for congress from an assembly seat that you have held for 12 years, you must subtract your old seat. It’s simple arithmetic.
Here’s a headline designed to cause cognitive dissonance among the entire membership of "Develop Don’t Destroy Brooklyn" and most of their allies. I can’t wait to watch Chuck Barron’s Head explode when he tries to process this:
"California Town Uses Eminent Domain to Block Wal-Mart"- New York Sun, May 9, 2006.
Bertha Lewis was probably pleased. Marty Markowitz probably had mixed feelings.
Bertha, what will you do when Bruce Ratner tries to open a Wal-Mart?
Back in the 80’s, Clarence Norman beat back a few challenges from islanders. In 1984 he faced two, Carl Roberts and Maurice Gumbs. Two years later, Gumbs backed off to let Roberts tackle Norman. It didn’t matter, Clarence held serve. Then there was a lull on the front, until Joan Gill stepped forward to challenge Clarence. Joan was born and bred in Brooklyn, just as James Davis was. She tackled Clarence twice; in 1992 and 1996. I managed her last campaign, and found out for the
Here is an article from the Staten Island Advance about potential candidates for the now open State Senate seat.
Mayor Mike’s tough testimony in DC concerned a bill that prevents the City and others from getting gun trace data. According to the Times, the restrictions began as a result of a law suit againt gun manufacturers & dealers started by Rudy’s administation. Wouldn’t it be a good idea for reporters to ask Rudy about this? Does he still support holding manufacturers & dealers responsible for gun violence? Does he agree with Mike’s rhetoric? Will he stop raising money for pro-gun Republicans?
Nat Hentoff's notes to Bob Dylan's 2nd album, written when he was still worth reading, say, in part: "'Hard Rain" adds Dylan "is a desparate kind of song". It was written during the Cuban missile crisis … when those who allowed themselves to think …were chilled by the immenence of oblivion. "Every line in it is actually the start of a whole song. But when I wrote it, I thought I wouldn't have enough time…to write all those songs so I put all I could into this one."
Excited as all of us who are participating in the launch of Room 8 are to be part of this brave new endeavor, with visions of long belated recognition and sugarplumbs dancing in our heads, it is hard not to feel a little chilled by the immenence of what may lie ahead. So, on the eve of our launch, I write a desparate kind of column; every line is the start of a new column, but when I wrote it, I thought I'd never have the time to write all those columns, so I put it all into this one. Bob Dylan certainly did better, but I think it might be more fun to read than Hentoff's 675th remembrance of A.J. Muste (admittedly not much to aspire to).
Last week, the publisher of "Footnotes" newspaper (Maurice Gumbs), had a lengthy conversation with Assemblymember Nick Perry. From this encounter Gumbs has stated emphatically that Nick is running for the 11th Congressional seat. This surprising news item comes amid speculation that Perry was a late scratch from the crowded field. It further bolsters a recent report in the Caribbean Life newspaper, wherein Perry was quoted as saying " reports of my political demise ( regarding this race)are grossly exaggerated".
Today there is even more speculation that the late scratch will be Yvette Clarke instead, since Ms. Clarke is widely seen as hitting the same voting base ( Caribbean-Americans) as Perry. There is also speculation that Ms.Clarke is having fundraising issues. My feeling is that Yvette is determined to contest this race no matter what.
“Littlefield is a policy wonk.” That is how Erik Engquist, then a Brooklyn Politics columnist, described me when I ran as a minor party protest candidate for state assembly in 2004. While I may consider myself more of a moral philosopher, you will probably want to read posts based on my knowledge of comparative public finance, land use planning, regional economics and transportation. I will try to limit myself to pointing out things that I know that perhaps you don’t, but probably should, and to avoid topics where the reader knows more than I do.
I ran for office after years of mounting disappointment with public policy at the state level in New York, and increasing frustration that when I went to cast a vote for legislative offices, there was generally only one name on the ballot – or perhaps a second name of someone who didn’t even bother to campaign. Eventually just complaining and saying “someone should do something about this” seemed lazy and dishonest. The last straw was when my Assemblymember came to my neighborhood for a nonsense PR public meeting, I asked him if he could vote “no” if the next state budget continued contain certain very objectionable (possibly even to him) priorities, and (while not directly answering the question) he pretty much indicated that he could not. So I did my civic duty, and having done so (“sorry about the collapse of public services and the bankruptcy of the government kids, but Dad did all he could”), I can go back to complaining.
Jerry Skurnik was the first paid employee of the Ed Koch for Mayor campaign in December of 1976 and then served for eight years as an assistant to Mayor Koch until leaving to start his firm in 1986.
He is now a partner in Prime New York, the State’s leading voter file vendor.