With guest, Louder Than a Bomb poet Nate Marshall

Tuesday, February 11, 2014


Mayor de Blasio delivers his first State of the City Address. Offers "a future of greater equality and opportunity,” 
N.Y. Mayor Bill de Blasio isn't folding his post-election cards as many predicted, despite stiff opposition from Gov. Cuomo's gang up in Albany and even some attacks from some lefties on his plan for universal pre-K.

AP reports:
By virtue of a campaign focused on income disparity, de Blasio has become a leading spokesman in the global movement to address fiscal inequality but in order to enact some of his signature ideas, he must first get approval in a city 150 miles to the north. Albany lawmakers must sign off on de Blasio's hopes to raise the minimum wage for city residents and for the centerpiece of his agenda: a tax hike on the rich to fund universal pre-kindergarten.
B-BYE... New York's charter hustlers are borrowing a page from from their corporate uncles by threatening to leave town if BdB goes through with his plans to make parasitic privately-run charters pay rent in public school buildings and enforce tighter restrictions on how they operate. I hope the mayor calls their bluff.

De Blasio's administration has already revised it's education budget, reportedly pulling $210 million away from the charter hustlers and directing it to expanding preschool programs. He's even placed a moratorium on new charter school co-locations.

In his State of the City Address yesterday, the Mayor said New York would become the largest municipality to offer identification cards to residents regardless of their legal status, making it easier for undocumented immigrants to open bank accounts, lease apartments or borrow library books.

Jay Travis
AFSCME BACKS TRAVIS… Community organizer and Chicago Bronzeville neighborhood native Jay Travis on Monday announced a key campaign endorsement by AFSCME Council 31 (my union) in her Democratic primary race against State Rep. Christian Mitchell. Mitchell is being targeted by organized labor for defeat after taking money from Stand For Children union-busters and for  voting for pension-robbing SB1 legislation.

In addition to AFSCME, Jay has been endorsed by the Chicago Teachers Union and Citizen Action Illinois.

On Friday, Travis reported $22,000 in campaign contributions from labor unions, including $10,000 from AFSCME; $5,000 from the CTU; $5,000 from the North Suburban Teachers Union COPE; and $2,000 from LCFT – COPE Local 504, IFT-AFTAF CIO.

'Oh, no-one knows what goes on behind closed doors'
I'm humming that old Charley Rich tune this morning as I'm reading the DNAinfo account of Rahm Emanuel's secret meeting with Chicago south side pastors. Probably should have been watching re-runs of Let's Make a Deal, at the same time. I wonder what it will take to head off any real opposition from an African-American opposition candidate (Toni Preckwinkle) as 2015 approaches?

Whatever the cost, Rahm can easily afford it. His campaign coffers have been swelled by big donations from city real-estate developers to the point where he has amassed a $6.2 million campaign fund more than a year before a February 2015 election in which there is no announced opponent. John Kupper, the mayor's political adviser, explained why Emanuel takes big campaign checks from developers.
"First, these are legal contributions," Kupper wrote in an email. "Second, the mayor does not take anything for granted relative to his election campaigns."
Toussaint Losier
This one goes out to Chicago housing activist Toussaint Losier who is out of jail this morning, after being arrested yesterday afternoon at PNC Bank on 87th and Cottage Grove. Toussaint was arrested without charges after being assaulted by a bank security guard during a petition delivery on the behalf of a homeowner currently fighting to keep her home.


Special thanks to Dr. Shelly Davis-Jones, Supt. of Dist. 149 (Dolton/Calumet City) and author of, Filling the Seat: The Pathway to the Superintendency for one African American Woman, for speaking in my class last night.


  1. Mike,
    I think you are wrong on the whole Christie thing. Cerf had already given notice before the Christie scandal broke.

  2. You forgot to mention that Cerf comes out of the Broad Academy, They prepared him well to work for Murdoch.

  3. Anon,
    Wrong? Moi? You must be confusing me with someone else.

  4. Mike, I can confirm my sources, many close to NJDOE, have been talking about Cerf's departure since well before the election and Bridgegate. Leaving now was almost certainly a part of the plan.

    Jersey Jazzman


Agree? Disagree? Let me hear from you.