Comment Policy

All comments to posts have to await approval. Please be aware that, depending on when I'm logged onto the internet, it may take me hours, even longer, to moderate comments, so if they don't turn up in a speedy fashion, they are still in the queue. Comments that cross a line I'm not comfortable with will not get approved. NOTE: Comments reflect the opinions of the person writing them and should not be assumed to reflect the opinion of the blog.

Friday, February 1, 2013

A NY Mayor Who Was Not a Bum (Unlike the Current Holder of the Office)


1924-2012

39 comments:

Anonymous said...

He won his third term, unlike the current disaster of a "mayor" who blatantly bought it with the help of Speaker Quinn. I miss the days when the people's voice was heard. Rest in Peace Mr Real Mayor.

Anonymous said...

RIP Mayor Koch. You were a Mayor who loved New York. More than can ever be said about the current holder of that once-esteemed office. Mayor Koch may have been dictatorial, but he was not a Dictator and he certainly was not an oligarch. I am saddened by his passing. He was not perfect, but his heart was in the right place and he always tried to serve this once-great city, rather than comandeer it and leech off of it.

Anonymous said...

RIP

Anonymous said...

I was greatly saddened to hear this news. He was always a gentleman and a fine mayor. I last saw him in Fairway on the UWS last year (yes, he was pushing his own shopping cart) and when I greeted him with the words "Good to see you Mister Mayor"he smiled and we chatted briefly.

Anonymous said...

I don't love many of Bloomberg's policies, but I find it absurd when people on this blog reminisce positively on the "good old days." I'll admit I was young then, but all I remember about NYC was that it was dangerous, covered in graffiti, and any middle class folks who hadn't fled to the burbs didn't dare go below 14th street (Financial / Tribeca aside). Middle class in the East Village or LES? - Forget about it.

For all the changes that the new "suburbanized" "NYU Students" are bringing you have to admit the city is a better place today then back then.

Stuy Town Reporter said...

NYC is more safe for wussies, sure, but have you taken a look at the new highrises that are destroying neighborhoods? At the influx of the wealthy and the self-deportation of the middle class who can't afford the rents and prices here?

Anonymous said...

Instead of making contentious statements in a thread intended as a tribute to someone who has just died, how about you reserve your ignorant comments for the right place and time. Unbelievable.

Anonymous said...

I don't think New York is much safer now. The current admin fudges stats to make it seem that way. It's true the obnoxious braying bro herds and woo hoo girls who booze on Avenue A and have replaced the Black and Spanish people who used to sit on the stoops and play music late into the night may be preferable from some people's point of view, but there is just as much drug culture as ever; it's just varnished over a bit more nowadays.
I miss the ethnic diversity that used to be around that neighborhood. Not all of it was bad.

Anonymous said...

I love that, "safer for wussies, sure". That is it in a nutshell isn't it? NYC is now a wussie city. Makes perfect sense and explains a lot about the difference between the old timers and the new younger tenants. Actually it sums up the difference between the greatest generation and today's generation. They are all wussies.

Anonymous said...

If not worrying about being mugged, raped, stabbed or killed makes me a wuss then I'm more then happy to be a wuss.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Mayor, you will be missed. You did a great job x3!

We should be so lucky to have someone like you in office again in our lifetimes.

How are you doing, Ed? You are doing fine by me.

Anonymous said...

If not worrying about being mugged, raped, stabbed or killed makes me a wuss then I'm more then happy to be a wuss.>>

You should worry because all of that still goes on. But wait, it doesn't happen in Stuyvesant Town, only in "Gramercy!" LOL!

Anonymous said...

Poster @ 1:58 pm: I think you are missing the point of this thread. Nobody misses the bad old days of crime and squalor. What we do miss is having a Mayor who was a real New Yorker who won his place in City Hall, tried his best (sometimes failed) to listen to and relate to the people he served (that word "served" is very important here) and wanted to make the City a place where people could live, work and play. He did not appoint idiots drawn from his cache of corporate cronies to do jobs they knew nothing about and he did not try to micro-manage people's lives when it came to personal habits of diet, etc. He treated New Yorkers as adults who could think for themselves and eat themselves to death or eat like bunny rabbits depending on what they wanted to do. In short, he was everything that the current incumbent isn't. He was a democratically elected Mayor who knew what his job was and did it to the best of his ability. When the people said "enough already," he said "I hear ya." He didn't find himself a puppet to bribe and corrupt and overturn the will of the people for a nice shiny quid pro quo promise as a reward for her "loyalty." Big, big differences between the guy who was really the people's choice of Mayor and the whiney little plutocratic putz who tarnishes that title and office now.

Anonymous said...

Ed Koch won his third term by a wide margin. By contrast, Bloomberg "won" his purchased illegal third term by a very narrow margin. Says a lot, doesn't it?

Anonymous said...

Bloomberg would never dare ask New Yorkers "How am I doin'?" He knows he would not like the response!

Anonymous said...

"He won his third term, unlike the current disaster of a "mayor" who blatantly bought it with the help of Speaker Quinn. I miss the days when the people's voice was heard. Rest in Peace Mr Real Mayor."

Let's hope Quinn shot herself in her big fat hoof when she allowed herself to be bought and used like that. Same goes for all those toads who voted in favor of overturning term limits. They can all go to hell as far as I'm concerned. Wouldn't vote for any one of them for any office whatsoever. Koch didn't need to stoop to buying his terms in office.

Anonymous said...

I don't know why Koch endorsed Bloomberg and why he was so pleased that Bloomberg was going to deliver his eulogy. In my opinion, this is a case of the ultimate carpet-bagging leech, who most people despise, eulogizing the ultimate, quintessential New Yorker who most (not all) people loved and who did his best to build up New York in a healthy way. The only building up of New York that Bloomberg has done is to give away so much of it to his developer cronies who are destroying its very essence.

Anonymous said...

Bloomberg is far from perfect but he is an upgrade over hatchet- man Guilani

Stuy Town Reporter said...

Bloomberg has been a disaster for my New York. For the wealthy, he's been great. The only mayor in my lifetime who was worse than him was Dinkins.

Anonymous said...

I don't view Bloomberg a bona fide mayor. He bought his illegal third term and has been behaving like the despotic little dictator he really is ever since. I doubt too many tears will be shed when he goes into the ground. Not from real people, anyway.

Anonymous said...

Bloomberg could not hold a candle to Guiliani.

Not even in the same league or sentence.

Anonymous said...

@ StuyTown Reporter

In what ways has Bloomberg been a disaster for New York? Elaborate

Anonymous said...

I wonder why Bloomturd didn't wear a yarmulke when he was eulogizing Koch in the synagogue? Maybe he thinks he is higher than God.

Anonymous said...

Abe Beame was no bargain, either.

Stuy Town Reporter said...

>>In what ways has Bloomberg been a disaster for New York? Elaborate<<

I wrote "my New York," which is an earthier, more middle class environment than what Bloomberg has been successfully pushing. The rapid influx of highrises, which look as if they could be in any vapid city, are destroying Manhattan visually. They also bring in wealthy renters or owners. The more this city becomes centered around the wealthy, the less will the middle class be able to afford it, both as a place to live and a place to buy. If this "vision" keeps progressing, Manhattan will lose all its charm and uniqueness.

Anonymous said...

Bloomberg is a thousand times better than Giuliani.

Anonymous said...

"In what ways has Bloomberg been a disaster for New York? Elaborate"

Consider this: When MetLife put us up for sale, Bloomberg could have a found a reason to intervene, since MetLife had received major tax abatements from the city, thereby giving the city an interest in how the property was disposed of. Instead he took a laissez faire position and let the Speyers overpay and get hold of the place.

Fortunately, his crony Dan Doctoroff was unsuccessful in getting the Olympics for New York, and Bloomberg was stopped from putting up a stadium on the West Side. Such stadiums are put up with large amounts of taxpayer money, even though taxpayers don't reap the benefits--the already rich real estate interests make a profit on our backs.

Bloomberg has been tinkering with the school system for 12 years. Can anyone make a case that public education is any better as a result?

Anonymous said...

Manhattan will lose all its charm and uniqueness>>

Correction: Manhattan has already lost all of its charm and uniqueness thanks to greedy, low class Bloomberg.

Anonymous said...

Actually STR, I'm more interested in your Dinkins comment!

Anonymous said...

"The more this city becomes centered around the wealthy, the less will the middle class be able to afford it."

You know, many historians would argue that city centers have never historically been for the middle class. City centers have always been for the uber-wealthy, or for the youth who are willing to trade comfort for location. Think of Paris, London, Tokyo, Barcelona, even ancient Rome. How many middle class folks live in downtown Paris?

What you guys are failing to see is that in the context of history the post war NYC era was a blip in time. An oddity in which cheap subsidized energy allowed the middle class to live in unnecessary large and unsustainable housing out in the suburbs, and in tern our cities became stagnant and degraded.

This trend is reversing as you are all well aware of, and it won't stop. The young people who are partying in your apartment next to you, and the wealthy who are buying luxury condos isn't abnormal, it's the city returning to the way it's supposed to be. You people are hold overs from a by-gone footnote of an era, fighting a loosing war to keep the city in an abnormal, poor, and degenerative state

Anonymous said...

10:07 AM: you sound like the guy/gal who wants Grandma's apartment. How many times do I have to tell you, you ain't gonna get it! So zip it!

Stuy Town Reporter said...

>>City centers have always been for the uber-wealthy, or for the youth who are willing to trade comfort for location<<

I don't know what you mean by "city centers," but if you are implying Manhattan then, historically, you are wrong. Very wrong. Sure, there were parts of Manhattan that were for the wealthy (the Fifth Ave mansions, for instance), but there were a lot of lower incomer residents of the borough.

Anonymous said...

"I don't know what you mean by "city centers," but if you are implying Manhattan then, historically, you are wrong. Very wrong. Sure, there were parts of Manhattan that were for the wealthy (the Fifth Ave mansions, for instance), but there were a lot of lower incomer residents of the borough."

STR, this person obviously knows NOTHING of the history of New York! What a noodle! Suggested reading: Island of Vice by Richard Zacke. Great book, totally nonfiction and gives a clear look into the New York City of the Gilded Age when the poor were poor and the rich were rich and both were integral elements of the rich tapestry that was New York City. Of course, there was no Bloomberg trying to turn the City into Dubai On The Hudson then; survival was the main goal of most people.

Anonymous said...

STR, my post concerning the book "Island of Vice" was not meant for you - it was meant for the person you were responding to. Just wanted to clarify.

Stuy Town Reporter said...

I know it wasn't meant for me, but the book does sound interesting!

Anonymous said...

"How many middle class folks live in downtown Paris?" Paris has a downtown? I've never noticed it. Seriously, what makes NYC unusual is the concentration of business and culture on a small island (not to say the other boroughs don't have their attractions, but Manhattan has more). The physical barrier of water on all sides makes a difference, psychological and otherwise. It's easy to walk across the Seine and you can also walk across the Thames in places. On either side of those rivers you have large areas of contiguous neighborhoods. Once you leave Manhattan, the landscape looks very different.

Anonymous said...

Who cares what Paris and London (and anywhere else, for that matter) has or does not have. This is New York. Go live in Paris, London or Mogadishu if you care to, but don't expect New York City to emulate them in any way. New York is unique in its own right and we don't need outsiders coming in and telling us it should be this way or that way like some other city. Bloomberg is obsessed with London and I wish he would go and live there. They just love whiney-voiced, ugly little Americans! NOT!

Anonymous said...

Another great NY history is "LOW LIFE" by Luc Sante. It'll certainly make you rethink that whole "only for the rich" BS. (FYI- the non-brownstone, low-rise housing of the Village was originally established as housing for the servant classes whose wealthy employers lived uptown).

As for the charm & uniqueness losses, the minute Giuliani changed the zoning to allow big box stores onto the island of Manhattan, it spelled the end. The rampant Disneyfication (to make more appealing & familiar to tourists) wrought by the influx of national chain stores (those found in EVERY mall in middle America) drove out the Mom & Pop stores. Mom & Pop couldn't afford the outrageous rents that the chain stores were willing to pay (even as loss leaders) simply to have a flagship/New York presence. Makes Bloomberg's carpetbagger status seem nearly quaint by comparison!

Remembering the wealth of little candy stores, groceries, REAL boutiques, head shops, delis, curio shops, bakeries (not "cupcake only" but Hungarian, Viennese, Italian, French, American, Chinese, Bavarian, Polish, Caribbean, Middle Eastern, Russian, etc.), shoe stores, music stores, men's clothiers, antique stores, linen stores, stereo & audio equipment stores, cheesemongers, uniform stores, florists (not fruit stands with flowers), toy stores, seamstresses & tailors, art supply stores, fishmongers, jewelers, saddleries, lingerie shops, hobby shops, perfumeries, plant stores & nurseries, butchers, stationers, small art galleries,... true specialty shops for EVERYTHING & ANYTHING (like JUST BULBS, JUST SHADES, FISHTOWN U.S.A., PETE'S SPICES, CANDLELAND, THE WICKERY, etc.)... now THAT'S a New York I'd certainly want to live in AND visit, not just because it has bigger, shinier versions of the same (national chain) stores you'll find at the local mall.

These businesses (and the lower rise housing surrounding them) had color & flavor. They had loyal fans & customers and tended to be here for decades; anchoring the neighborhoods and stabilizing communities. Only when the commercial RE market saw that they could price gouge (and get away with it, neverminding that there were already 4 chain drug stores on the block or 3 banks in a row) did the little guys pack up their lives & livelihoods and either shuffle off to Florida or the Sun Belt into an early retirement OR head to BMCC (for example) for some career retraining or simply access to their Jobs Board (data entry, anyone?). Sadly, most of these small business continued to thrive up until their final days; it just made no good business sense to pay 10 times the rent (making no profit) simply to keep your doors open. The fact that the carpetbaggers who replaced them were operating at a loss and were exercises in redundancy mattered not at all. They cared not at all for their neighbors wants or needs, nor those of the neighborhood and invested in none but their corporate bottom line.

Jane Jacobs ("The Death and Life of Great American Cities") who championed new, community-based approaches to planning may have "changed the way people view urban development (NYTimes)" but just because things were now viewed differently didn't mean that the greediest among them had to actually "listen to," much less consider, the consequences of their self-centered actions at all.

For the newbies who are just passing through it may seem like a longing for the "good old days" is just a sclerotic inconvenience since you can now get a latte on every corner. For those of us who call Manhattan HOME, it's less about wistful yearning and more about community stability, a wealth of local color (no, not those omnipresent puddles of bro-puke), true uniqueness, economic & civic stability & responsibility, and about appreciating that the perfect balance between familiarity & surprise really can be found on every corner.

Anonymous said...

Poster @ 6:58 PM: Perfectly said.
I used to have relatives from the UK, Ireland and Australia come and stay with me and they absolutely loved Stuyvesant Town, New York City (warts and all) in the 80s for the very reasons you have described. Now they hate it and they and their children still come to visit my family here, they are appalled at the way New York has changed into Anywhere, USA (and they have traveled extensively) and feel that Stuyvesant Town has been raped and pillaged and invaded by suburban kids. These are they eyes of outsiders. Their children and especially the grandchildren don't know that New York and Stuy Town were once very different and more interesting than they are now. The kids think ST is a dumpy dorm!