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October 10th, 2008

PURE GOLD: LET’S NOT FORGET THE SENATE RACES.

by Ed Gold


Kay Hagan, D-NC.

The wind is at the Democrats’ backs in the battle for Senate control with one big surprise in the making: Liddy Dole of North Carolina may join husband Bob in retirement.

Kay Hagan, a feisty state senator, only recently took the lead against Liddy, who had held a steady edge in September.

Hagan has rapped Dole for for being a loyal Bush follower, and for being lethargic on the Senate floor.

There are 11 seriously contested seats, with ten currently occupied by Republicans and only one by a Democrat. Continue Reading »

Filed Under: Articles | Commentary | New York | News | Politics

October 10th, 2008

35 MEMBERS OF THE BROOKLYN DEMOCRATIC COUNTY COMMITTEE TELL THE NEW YORK CITY COUNCIL THAT THEY OPPOSE THE EXTENSION OF TERM LIMITS.

by You the Reader


What if it was Bush asking for a third term?

Thanks to The Brooklyn Optimist for the heads up.

cc: Mayor Mike Bloomberg

Council Speaker Christine Quinn

Ronald Lauder

Dear Council Members:

What if President Bush had decided to amend the Constitution so that he could run for a third term? Surely, since 47 out of 51 of you are Democrats, this notion must be pretty frightening. Yet it is this concern that best sums up why we oppose the proposal before you to extend term limits.

Whether term limits are good for New York City is not an issue we care to argue. In the past 15 years, the voters of our City have twice decided that philosophical debate for themselves. In fact, it is as a result of their decision that most of you owe your current jobs. But now that you are on the verge of having to relinquish your power to a new generation of leaders, many of you are having second thoughts.

Surely, you can’t expect voters to interpret your motivations to extend term limits as anything but a self-serving power grab. Every dictator in world history faced with term limits has argued at the last minute of their reign that the political climate is so serious the people must keep them in power or else fear ruin. Well, New York City didn’t buckle when Mayor Giuliani tried to stay in office after 9/11. Now, we ask you to show the same courage and stand up to Mayor Bloomberg.

The people of New York need your help as City Council Members to protect our vote. The major newspapers, so many of our elected officials, and even Ron Lauder, once the foremost champion of term limits, have all abandoned us or cut backroom deals. You’re the last hope of the little guy. If you really think that New Yorkers want this change, then put Mayor Bloomberg’s proposal back on the ballot for referendum and let us decide.

We 35 members of the Brooklyn Democratic County Committee ran for office to be the voice of our neighbors and our communities. We thought you ran for office for the same reason. Here’s your chance to prove us right.

Sincerely, Continue Reading »

Filed Under: Community | Letters | New York | Politics | Take Action

October 10th, 2008

TERM LIMITS: SIGN THE PETITION, GO TO THE MEETINGS, SPEAK UP.

by You the Reader


Rudy didn’t want term limits. What more do you need to know?

Thanks to Rob Hollander and itsourdecision.org for the heads up.

In 1993, New Yorkers overwhelmingly voted for terms limits—two four-year terms for elected officials in New York City. In 1996, New Yorkers voted again to keep term limits, and keep them at just two terms.

No matter how you feel about term limits, one thing is clear: it’s OUR decision, not the politicians’. If they want to change term limits, it should be done the fair way, by asking the voters’ permission.

But a new bill introduced in the City Council would do just the opposite. The bill would ignore the voters and give politicians a third term (the same politicians who will vote on it).

City Hall needs to hear from you. Sign the petition and make your voice heard.

You can also see where your Council member stands, see a term limits time line, tell a friend, and see who we are.

CITY COUNCIL HEARINGS ON TERM LIMITS:

The Committee on Governmental Operations, chaired by Council Member Simcha Felder, has scheduled two public hearings on this matter. Continue Reading »

Filed Under: Community | Events | New York | News | Politics | Take Action

October 9th, 2008

MAKE YOUR OWN HALLOWEEN T SHIRT @ BABYLICIOUS: 10/12/8 @ 11AM.

by John Coakley


Too soon for a T-shirt, but it’s never to soon to celebrate Halloween.

Thanks to UrbanBaby for the heads up.

Please don’t dress up your dog in cute Halloween costumes. A yappy little purse-dog has enough of a hard time holding his head up high amongst his larger bretheren without wearing a terry cloth pumpkin shaped hat as well. Have some respect, please.

Instead, go to Babylicious and create a Halloween-themed for your baby or toddler. It’s a fun way to bond with your kids, plus babies are supposed to look cute and non-threatening. So wearing a shirt that says “Mommy’s lil’ Hellbeast” and a pumpkin hat is not a problem. Have fun.

Halloween Tees
10/12/8 from 11am-1pm
$20.
Babylicious
51 Hudson Street
212-406-7440

Filed Under: Arts & Leisure | Community | Events | New York

October 9th, 2008

OCEANA BENEFIT GALA @ BLVD: 10/11/8 @ 7PM.

by John Coakley

Oceanblue Divers is hosting a benefit for ocean advocacy organization Oceana (http://www.oceana.org) and the Women Divers Hall of Fame Scholarship fund this Saturday. Five-time Emmy winning underwater filmmaker Stan Waterman will be the guest of honor. A raffle and silent auction will be no doubt be enlivened by the one hour open bar at the beginning of the evening. This is a worthy cause and it should be a fun night; you should go.

By the way, be sure to visit Oceana’s website to vote for the world’s freakiest fish. My money’s on the Vampire Squid.

Oceana Benefit Gala
10/11/8
7:00pm-11:00pm
BLVD
199 Bowery (at Spring St)
$45 in advance, $50 at the door
Get tickets here.

Filed Under: Community | Events | New York | Take Action

October 8th, 2008

IMAGINE PEACE: A LOOK INTO JOHN LENNON’S LIFE THROUGH HIS ARTWORK @ OPEN HOUSE GALLERY: 10/9/8—10/12/8.

by John Coakley

John Lennon would have turned 68 on October 9th, and to commemorate the occasion his widow and longtime creative partner Yoko Ono & Bag One Productions are presenting the largest collection of Lennon’s works ever assembled. Imagine Peace: A Look into John Lennon’s Life Through His Artwork has traveled around the world for 15 years, garnering record crowds and raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for charity. The
exhibit features Lennon’s characteristic drawings in hand-signed pieces and limited edition prints, as well as serigraphs, lithographs, copper etchings and aqua tints; all are available for sale.

Christmas is not that far off, folks. I’m not sure how much these pieces are going for, but I’ll bet you can find a few nice ones for less than the price of a Lexus. That way when those horrible holiday Lexus ads—you know, the ones in which a J. Crew model man surprises a J. Crew model woman with a giant gas guzzler wrapped in a bow—start airing you can proudly say, “Screw you, Lexus. I got my wife an original John Lennon drawing for Christmas and the money went to Meals on Wheels, not J. Crew on wheels.” That is true: the suggested $2 door admission does in fact go to Meals on Wheels, so even if you don’t buy anything you’ll still be helping out. Which is something that Mr. Lennon would have certainly appreciated.

Happy Birthday, John. You are missed.

Imagine Peace: A Look into John Lennon’s Life Through His Artwork
Open House Gallery
201 Mulberry Street (between Kenmare and Spring Streets)
10/09/8: 9-5
10/10/8: 12-9
10/11/8: 11-8
10/12/8: 11-6

Filed Under: Arts & Leisure | Community | Events | New York | Take Action

October 7th, 2008

PIPE BREAK AT WATTS & 6TH SNARLS TRAFFIC, ANGERS SOHO RESIDENTS AND COMMUTERS ALIKE.

by D. Clark MacPherson

About 11 o’clock last night neighbors were awakened by a major pipe break at the corner of Watts Street and Avenue of the Americas. Traffic was made even worse at the intersection leading to the Holland Tunnel this morning and continuing into the afternoon.

Continue Reading »

Filed Under: Articles | Community | New York | News

October 7th, 2008

COMMUNITY SANITATION STEERING COMMITTEE PLEAS WITH CITY TO OUST “GARBAGE GARAGE.”

by Joelle Panisch

Its dirty business when it comes to erecting a “garbage garage,” especially in a neighborhood on the rise with million dollar real estate at stake. Thus is the case in Hudson Square, where the city is planning to build a 120 ft. tall Sanitation facility on the lots at Spring and West Streets. The building will hold Manhattan’s garbage trucks, store supplies and act as a refueling station.

The plan was proposed in early 2007 and since has united both residents and developers, who all have a stake in the growing neighborhood. Brokers foresee property values decreasing by an estimated 30 to 40 percent.

Community Boards 1 and 2, representing the opinion of most residents, oppose the plan. However, the city has already rejected proposed suggestions for a smaller facility and alternative locations. City Planning is expected to approve a revised proposal later this month, though changes will only slightly mollify residents.

This week the Community Sanitation Steering Committee, formed in early 2007, has once again expressed their concerns. In a letter to City Planning, Chairs Philip Mouquinho and Denise Levine have outlined their persisting worries with the updated proposal and to “advise of errors of fact.”

Among the concerns are noise and congestion, which the City addressed by proposing a mid-day blackout period during which City vehicles (which include garbage trucks, street cleaners, salt spreaders, and vehicles from other city agencies) will not be allowed to refuel. However, the Committee fears that it will only increase congestion in an area already “overburdened” from rush hour gridlock due to its proximity to the Hudson Tunnel. Also the committee points out that while the city cited less than 20 public agency vehicles fuel at Spring St. now on an average day, “the actual number of vehicles on a peak day (Monday) was 38, almost twice that amount.”

The Committee also has fears that the storage of 34,000 gallons of fuel is a danger due to the proximity to the Holland Tunnel, a supposed terrorist target. Continue Reading »

Filed Under: Articles | Community | New York | News | Politics

October 7th, 2008

WENDINGEN: A JOURNAL FOR THE ARTS, 1918-1932 @ PETER BLUM: THROUGH 11/1/8.

by John Coakley

Wendingen, or “Upheavals,” was a Dutch journal of the arts that was published from 1918 through 1932. What started out as an architectural forum soon evolved into something that made room for all of the arts. Each issue would focus on a particular artist or topic that would be explored from a number of different perspectives, not unlike Granta today. Each issue was hand-bound and painstakingly assembled; the cover art and typography were extraordinarily innovative for the time, making Wendingen all the more collectible, to say nothing of influential for graphic designers. Josef Hoffman, Gustav Klimt, and Erich Mendelsohn are some of the artists featured in the complete collection of 116 issues that are currently on display at Peter Blum. Fans of early 20th century art and design should definitely give this one a look.

Wendingen: A Journal for the Arts, 1918-1932
9/18/8-11/1/8
Peter Blum SoHo
99 Wooster Street
Tuesday-Friday: 10-6 + Saturday 11-6

Filed Under: Arts & Leisure | Events | New York

October 6th, 2008

PURE GOLD: EMAILS FROM ISRAEL.

by Ed Gold

Ehud Olmert: Now he sees the light, since he’s no longer in office. Thanks!

Four of my cousins miraculously survived the Holocaust and now represent a third generation in Israel. I correspond with Yehuda, who has become an internationally known biologist at the Weitzmann Institute.

He was saved twice during the Nazi rule of Czechoslovakia. First, a Christian family protected him and he has honored them by taking their last name. He was finally arrested and sent to a concentration camp. He survived by hiding under floorboards as the Nazis retreated in the face of the Soviet drive towards Berlin.

He e-mails me regularly and is not a political person, asking only that he and the rest of the family may live peaceful lives.

That likelihood is not too promising. An Israeli prime minister, weakened by scandal, has just resigned, leaving future Israeli leadership pretty much up in the air. Apparently, Ehud Olmert has had a very delayed epiphany. Long a right-winger, and then a moderate on Israeli-Palestinian relations, he now sounds like a member of Peace Now, the Israeli organization that wants Israel to give up almost all of the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem to a Palestinian state. Continue Reading »

Filed Under: Articles | Commentary | New York | News | Politics

October 6th, 2008

NEW YORKERS PROTEST AGAINST BLOOMBERG PLAN TO OVERRIDE TERM LIMITS.

by Jo Panisch


Executive Director of the New York Civil Rights Coalition Michael Myers and New York State Senator Eric Adams

More than fifty impassioned protesters gathered at the steps of City Hall on Sunday to protest Mayor Bloomberg’s announcement that he will seek a third term through special legislation by the City Council. This controversial move was ignited by the current financial crisis, says Bloomberg, and his belief that his longstanding business experience is what the city needs to help withstand it.

Those gathered had differing opinions on Mayor Bloomberg and his economic prowess. Many even took opposing positions on term limits, some supportive of third term legislation. However all protestors agreed that Mr. Bloomberg’s petition for an extended term through the City Council undermines the democratic process, calling it nothing short of decree and self interest in extending his own tenure.

“What do we want?” the assembled chanted, “Democracy!”

According to a poll taken by Quinnipac University on July 16th the electorate opposed extending term limits for Mayor Bloomberg by a margin of 56% to 38%. However, since this question has changed from theoretical to actual, results have shifted. In a poll conducted October 3rd the opposition has dropped to 42% with support of a third term rising to 54%, so to see him remain in office. This contrasts a poll questioning the basic concept with a margin of 65% to 29% percent supporting the notion of term limits.

Extending the term limit to three terms has been put to vote twice before, in 1993 and again in 1996. Both times New Yorkers rejected it. Continue Reading »

Filed Under: Articles | Community | Events | New York | News | Politics | Take Action

October 4th, 2008

GEORGE CARLIN—WE’RE GONNA @#$%& MISS YOU! @ 92ND STREET Y: 10/5/8 @7:30PM.

by John Coakley

Eddy Friedfeld, Whoopi Goldberg, Judy Gold, Jim Norton, Richard Belzer and others gather to celebrate the late George Carlin. Carlin not only showed us how to lighten up about profanity but was also a genius at uncovering the various logical inconsistencies of daily life. He also made life a little easier for nonbelievers by tackling religion in ways that were bold, rhetorically sound, and so hilarious that the devout couldn’t stay mad at him for long. This panel of comics should be able to provide some interesting insights and anecdotes about their peer and trailblazer. Worth braving the Upper East Side for. You should go.

George Carlin—We’re Gonna @#$%& Miss You!
10/5/8 @ 7:30pm
92nd Street Y
Kaufmann Concert Hall
Lexington Avenue at 92nd Street
$27
Click here for tickets.

Filed Under: Arts & Leisure | Community | Events | New York

October 3rd, 2008

THE DANSPACE PROJECT BOOGIES: 10/3/8 – 10/5/8.

by Jo Panisch


Factor T.

Dance is an engine that is fueled by creativity. The more imagination, the further the dance can go. For almost 35 years the Danspace Project has encouraged performers and choreographers to take leaping risks, so to say. Its supportive environment breeds innovation and boundless ways for artists to express the many complex facets of the human condition through a non-verbal medium. This is an art so often unexplored because it can’t be adequately understood on a reel or a canvas. It is a transient art, and one you should go see.

This weekend the Danspace Project presents:
Sleeping Giant
“Lawrence Goldhuber’s vibrant, politically charged, dance work Sleeping Giant tells the allegorical tale of America’s rise, fall, and rebirth as seen through the eyes of a small town. The story of twin brothers who travel opposite paths unfurls in this elaborate and evocative stage production written by and featuring the artwork of collaborator and graphic novelist Daniel Duford….” Continue Reading »

Filed Under: Arts & Leisure | Events | New York

October 3rd, 2008

RALLY AGAINST OVERTURNING TERM LIMITS: CITY HALL, 10/5/8 @ 2PM.

by John Coakley

As always, thanks to Rob Hollander for the heads-up.

Even if you want Mayor Mike to have a third term (And no one’s judging you, even if you are the Northeast regional manager of Rite Aid and love the way rising rents are pushing out mom and pops to make more room for chain stores like yours. Bastard. Okay, I’m judging; sue me.) you have to admit that it’s a little scary how the two referendums from 19993 and 1998—you know, the ones in which we said we want term limits—are being ignored. Not nice, Mike. Your “at least he isn’t Giuliani” points have now officially run out.

So join up with your fellow citizens and The People Have Spoken Coalition to let the man know that his arrogance has not gone unnoticed. We need to speak up to make sure that what we’ve already said twice before gets respected.

Rally Against Overturning Term Limits
10/5/8 @ 2pm
City Hall
260 Broadway, between Chambers and Warren

Filed Under: Community | Events | New York | Politics | Take Action

October 2nd, 2008

A SAMPLE SALE FOR THE SOCIALLY CONSCIOUS 10/2/8 – 10/5/8.

by Jo Panisch


Edun’s Prism Cap dress. It looks even better if you have a head.

Samples for Ecompassion is a sample sale of many coveted brands that also aids a good cause. Oh my.

It benefits the non profit Somaly Mam. It is an organization committed to an issue that we, as New Yorkers in the 21st century, are privileged to know little about—slavery. Slavery, or human trafficking, is often a thriving trade in underdeveloped countries that slide under the global radar. Somaly Mam hopes to end the silence by promoting awareness and involvement through the news media and Internet communities. The organization has also funded shelters throughout Cambodia and Southeast Asia to rescue and rehabilitate victims of this unconscionable practice.

The downtown sale is for a good cause and there are discounts up to 80% off on brands like Edun, Theory, DVF, Marc by Marc Jacobs, and Vince. Not only do proceeds benefit Somaly Mam, but with each sale a tree will be planted. An opening party featuring a Somaly Mam book signing and photo exhibit will go down tonight from 6-9pm.

We at the Soho Journal publicize things like this because we believe in the power of working for causes outside of yourself. In any country, in any economic environment, this would still be a good cause. So do something positive for the world and your wardrobe and buy some jeans!!

Samples for Ecompassion

10/2/8 – 10/5/8
Opening Party 10/2/8 6-9pm
2 Great Jones St. (between Broadway & Lafayette)

Filed Under: Community | Events | New York | Take Action

October 2nd, 2008

GIMME SHELTER ANIMAL RESCUE BENEFIT @ HIGHLINE BALLROOM: 10/6/8 @ 7PM.

by John Coakley


Adrock with quite possibly the coolest dog in the world.

Adam Horovitz (Adrock of the Beastie Boys) and Gina Gershon co-host this benefit concert for animal rescue groups, produced by Rational Animal and the ASPCA. The event celebrates ten NYC animal rescue groups working with the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals to end euthanasia of healthy and treatable animals in city shelters by 2015. A very ambitious and worthy goal indeed. The star power goes beyond the estimable hosts; performers include Debbie Harry, Jesse Malin, and the seriously rockin’ Earl Greyhound. JD Samson of Le Tigre and Moby will both be DJing, and surprise guests are promised as well. Tickets start at a relatively reasonable $50, so this is a good alternative to that Springsteen/Joel Obama benefit whose cheap seats ($500) are already gone. You should go.

Gimme Shelter Rock & Rescue NYC
10/6/8 @ 7pm
Highline Ballroom
431 West 16th Street
$50-$750
Get tickets here.

Filed Under: Arts & Leisure | Events | New York

October 1st, 2008

LUCINDA WILLIAMS @ WAMU THEATER @ MADISON SQUARE GARDEN: 10/3/8 @ 8PM.

by John Coakley

Lucinda Williams makes the kind of music that somehow works just as well as the soundtrack to a quiet evening with the one you love as it does for wallowing in/getting over the pain of a brutal breakup. Her mix of country and rootsy southern rock goes down like your favorite bourbon and produces just as warm of a glow. Lucinda’s raspy, expressive voice takes you through tales of loves won and lost with the confidence of a master storyteller. In other words, when you listen to her albums (especially Car Wheels on a Gravel Road) or see her live (where the rock half of her aesthetic is a little more noticeable) you’re in good hands. Whether you bring your sweetie or a go solo with a pack of kleenex to get you through, you should definitely go.

Lucinda Williams w/ Buick 6
10/3/8 @ 8pm
WaMu Theater at Madison Square Garden
4 Penn Plz., New York, NY 10001
nr. 32nd St.
212-465-6741
Get tickets here.

Filed Under: Arts & Leisure | Events | New York

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