Content posted by D. Clark Macpherson

As the Judicial Convention arrives, among those jurists who are in the running for State Supreme Court, it is a limited list. This evening, at Harlem Hospital, the jockeying will have begun.

In a stunning defeat for the "old guard" in local politics, the Downtown Independent Democrats took an overwhelming number of key positions in yesterday's election. Jenifer Rajkumar and Paul Newell succeeded as District Leaders of the 64th District (part c), and John Scott won a hotly contested election as District Leader of the 66th District (part b) to elevate D.I.D. to a more prominent and cohesive role as Downtown's premier political club. Jean Grillo, unopposed, was reelected as well.

To paraphrase Einstein, he said that one definition of insanity is to repeatedly do the same thing and expecting the results to be different. It’s beginning to look like our political leaders are guilty of that mistake – at least with respect to economics. In the financial world, conservative professionals have been warning everyone that we have to stop kicking the can down the road. In other words, the party is over but no one wants to hear it.

When Eric Schneiderman was running for Attorney General, one of his campaign promises referred to the need for a Sheriff of Wall Street.  People were being evicted from their homes with fraudulently obtained paperwork, so that banks could speed up the process. Schneiderman vowed to get to the bottom of the whole mess – from the Wall Street and Investment Bank fraud to the warehouse lines, criminal mortgage brokers and securitization/phony CDO bond ratings.

Patriotism requires that we face reality in this country.  We love America for what it stands for and for the ideals and freedoms afforded us.  While imperfect, no other country can match our reverence for justice, freedom and the dedication to the truth.  Painful as it may be at times, imperfect as our system of government is— it is superior to all others. Many have given their lives and suffered the loss of their freedom to protect us from tyranny. It is an eternal struggle.

There is actually no mystery about what is going on economically. With two actual wars and a sneaky third one (Libya) being funded, we are leaking money abroad and spending far more than we have. We can’t print the money fast enough. Domestically, we are the Rainbow’s End of a bubble that is not nearly over, and not being dealt with. Wall Street, with the aid of rating’s agencies which have been weighing a downgrade of U.S. debt (and failed to understand those Trillions in fraudulent bonds, CDO’s, that brought about the Great Recession) has continued to increase leverage, pay huge bonuses, and point the finger at the average citizen as the culprit.

With the media second-guessing Cy Vance, Jr. over a very high profile prosecution, the question becomes what is not known, as opposed to what is known about the case.

After eight years of trying to get the Community Board to support the historic iron sculptures created by Bob Bolles in the 1960's, which were implanted in the asphalt in SoHo, we gave up.  The SoHo Arts Council was formed primarily with the idea in mind that guerrilla art in all of its forms needed to be preserved. As part of this effort, about 10 years ago, photographs of all of the street art Downtown was cataloged and maintained for the benefit of art historians.

We’ve been predicting a double-dip recession for nearly a year now and it’s been difficult trying to find the confluence of numbers that prove it. Well, it turns out that it has been difficult to find because we’re here. We’re in it now.

It’s the kind of problem that those of us in lower Manhattan never envisioned in the 60’s: losing a hospital. It’s still kind of shocking that the place where the AIDS epidemic was first addressed, where the 9-11 First Responders and victims went, and where my son’s life was saved – is gone. How is that possible?