View From Here
By David Mark Greaves
Pending the outcome of the absentee and paper ballot counts, congratulations to Bill de Blasio on his apparent win of the Democratic mayoral primary. Like Pat Boone covering Little Richard, he covered John Liu’s message, repackaged it in black and white, and the voters were presented with it like it was something new. Now we look forward to seeing how much of the substance behind the message will he use as well. Will de Blasio push to charge insurance companies the General Corporation Tax ($310 million), have private equity firms pay an Unincorporated Business Tax for carried interest ($200 million), call for personal income tax reform for the 1% ($1.2 billion), and use any of the other revenue-generating proposals in the People’s Budget that will bring equity into the system and allow the city to care for the people and the infrastructure that make all of this possible.
Congratulations to Ken Thompson on his win over Charles Hynes for the Democratic nomination for District Attorney. In handily defeating a longtime incumbent, he accomplished a rare feat, particularly for a first-time effort. According to the Wall Street Journal, he is the first candidate in more than a century to defeat an elected district attorney in the borough and is about to become Brooklyn’s first black D.A. In his speech acknowledging the win, Thompson said, “We have an opportunity to transform our criminal justice system in this city. As DA, I will advance a smart-on-crime agenda to keep our streets safe and our communities whole”. And in his concession speech, Mr. Hynes acknowledged that the voters saw a need for change and “that is something I can accept.”
As another example of every vote counting, Robert Cornegy in District 36 is holding a 94 vote lead over Kirsten Foy. The paper and absentee ballots will decide this one.
President Obama has stumbled badly with Syria, and I wonder if there could be something in the water at the White House that makes presidents believe that war is always an option (although president Obama says it’s not war, just the “modest” firing of a few missiles at a sovereign nation). With the strong majority of American people, the Congress, the United Nations and most of the nations of the world against a military response to the alleged use of poison gas by the Assad regime, the president has had to backpedal in his rush to attack. He was aided in this by Secretary of State John Kerry’s seemingly spontaneous suggestion that Syria allow international oversight of its chemical weapons. Now the Russians are grabbing at that as a serious proposal and Syria seemingly embraces the idea. Whether the Syrians or Russians are sincere or not, once you stumble on the way to war, we can only hope it’s hard to pick that pace back up. No one should have to die so that Obama can follow through on his mistaken utterance about a “red line”.