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Friday, August 29, 2014
Garodnick Positioning Himself to be the Next Mayor
Our councilman has been sending out emails, subject-headed as "In Case You Missed It," notifying recepients of a Capital NY profile on him, titled "The Careful Dissenter in the Council Majority."
While the piece may appear to prop up Garodnick's hopes of becoming the next mayor of the city, it actually reveals the reasons why New Yorkers may not want Dan as their next mayor. Aside from the vote on raising school bus drivers' wages (Dan voted no), it basically exposes Dan as the type of politician we've seen in STPCV: an overly smooth-talking politician-lawyer who travels the middle road and voices "concerns" while ultimately supporting the policy he is concerned about. This way, if something goes wrong, it still remains a win-win for him. "I had my concerns...."
We in this community are all too familiar with Dan's "concerns"--from his concerns about the commercialization of the Oval, which he initially fought against before giving in, to his concerns on other issues, like student housing, construction noise, etc. If his "concerns" are not enough, there is always the promise of "new legislation" to keep residents stringing along with hope, despite the only thing being needed most of the time is enforcement of current legislation. I well remember those god-awful crating bins that were being moved around on the 20 Street Loop, screeching a discordant and loud wake up call to residents in the area at hours like 5am. Despite the noise at such an hour being clearly illegal, Dan seemed powerless to do anything of an immediate and necessary nature (as was the TA, btw). It was a couple of years at least before those bins were moved to another area of Stuy Town, to terrorize residents there, before they were placed in garage-like houses on the perimeter of the complex.
Garodnick is also positioning himself on city issues as someone who will be acceptable to both Democrats and Republicans, and gets props from the Council's Republican minority leader in the article:
"Dan is clearly not shy about making his positions known when he agrees, and particularly when he disagrees, with the Council leadership or the administration," said the Council's Republican minority leader, Vinny Ignizio. "I think that's an important role to play in the Council."
I seriously think that if De Blasio pisses off the power elite of the city with his more radical agenda, Garodnick can emerge as their safe choice to replace the current mayor. (Of course, Scott Stringer is aching for the job, too.)
Someone once wrote a comment on this blog that, I think, nailed what Garodnick is about: He loves the demographic that is upper middle-class and that's into the artificial lifestyle of the cheap amenities that a landlord can offer to make a residential area more than it really is. These are the people, young and progressive like him, who can fill his campaign chest up with nice contributions. (Big real estate has already donated to his campaigns, and will continued to do so in the future.) These are the people who don't care if the soul of New York City disappears, as long as a Starbucks and a Duane Reade are around the corner, as well as some nice restaurants offering artisanal food. These are the people for whom Dan wants to see condo conversion happen in STPCV. "Affordable housing"? The meaning of that has changed, and while Dan may have some nostalgia for the type of real middle class, working class families that use to live here in genuine affordable housing, the world changes and it's time to move on.