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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Turning the Tables

Well, this seems to be working out pretty damn well for David Paterson, the current and still reigning Governor of the great state of New York. In fact, it couldn't have worked out better if those nasty rumors were orchestrated by the governor himself!! (Ha ha.) There is no blockbuster story, he gloated to the press after being interviewed by the Times' Danny Hakim, who, he says, questioned him about campaign expenditures, his choice of restaurants and various hiring decisions. [NY Post]

So, the governor gets to portray himself as a victim of the press, always good for ample sympathy from folks of all political stripes. And he gets the opportunity to turn the tables on a press corps which has been particularly harsh on him during his troubled tenure.

They gave me an answer such as: We’re not responsible....But I do think I was owed, as a human being, if not professional journalism, the right and the opportunity not to have the people of the state of New York thinking that their governor is about to resign when there hasn’t been on shred of evidence that any of these charges that had been made about me are even true." [Daily Politics]
The press comes off either as arrogant, as in the case of the Times, or as gossipy perpetrators of a rumor-fueled feeding frenzy, as with the rest of the press and bloggers like yours truly. And, at least for a day, we didn't even hear about Aqueduct. That much.
Tuesday evening, Joe Sexton, The Times’s Metropolitan Editor, said: “Obviously we are not responsible for what other news organizations are reporting. It’s not coming from The Times.” [City Room]
But it seems to me that it wouldn't have killed the Times to have put out the word that it had nothing up it sleeve. Not that they were under any obligation to do so; but I don't understand why they wouldn't once things got out totally out of hand. Were they somehow protecting their journalistic integrity? Otherwise, it just seems kinda pretentious to me; it was almost like they relished prolonging the suspense. Still, the question remains: Was it all a total fabrication as the governor claims? Or was the Times merely unable to substantiate to its standards and satisfaction?

Meanwhile, the Queens Courier reports that the local Ozone Park community supports the selection of AEG, also good news for the guv. “We’re not unhappy that AEG got the contract.“ Oh. Well. That's actually not all that enthusiastic. Though more so than Smelly Deal or Dave's Dying Deal. However, Community Board 10 chair Betty Braton did add: "It’s a solid proposal with more jobs and community benefits.” Check out the article, which has some interesting comments about the losing bidders....most interesting of which is the notion that the community was turned off by SL Green's drawings of the Hard Rock Cafe sign - "a giant guitar [logo at the entrance to the facility] was more suited to Times Square than the neighborhood."

Darryl Greene is out at AEG as previously reported; and James Odato reported in the Times Union yesterday that he held a .6 percent stake. Additionally, he wrote that the Rev. Floyd Flake holds the same stake. That caught my attention, because last week, in trying to trivialize Flake's stake, the governor said it was .06 percent, making him, in Paterson's view, not even a minority owner, but a minute owner. And that decimal point placement, confirmed via email by the reporter, makes a huge difference when you're talking about the kind of money that the Big A racino is expected to generate. The Daily News reported over the weekend that the expectations are higher than Yonkers, which paid out nearly $156 million for the casino operator during the last fiscal year. .6 percent of that comes to $936,000, as opposed to a tenth of that using Paterson's math. I'd say that's more than minute, even if that's a gross figure. And even for Flake.


jk said...

The fun has just begun for Gov Patterson.

Feds to look into 'shady' Aqueduct deal: report


Last Updated: 10:33 AM, February 10, 2010

The feds have opened an investigation into Gov. Paterson's awarding of a lucrative contract to a politically connected group to run a gaming center at Aqueduct Raceway, according to a new report.

A source said the US Attorney's office in Brooklyn is looking into whether the sleaze-soaked process involved any wrongdoing, WPIX/Channel 11 reported today on its Web site.

Alan Mann said...

jk - Would like to see this confirmed by more than just the PIX report. You would think that the feds have better things to do, as "shady" as the deal might seem. Wonder if the White House is giving Justice a push in response to Paterson's pushback and digs at the Administration since he rebuffed their request to drop out of the race?

steve in nc said...

Federal Justice Dept. also has got to be steamed at both state & city officials for opposing NYC as a venue for trials for Gitmo detainees, when no one of either party raised an eyebrow at past terror trials in NYC.

jk said...

I will add the Caroline Kennedy fiasco as another reason for payback.

Alan Mann said...

The probe is about New Direction Local Development, the group that Malcolm Smith is part of which the Post has been carrying on about for the last week, and not about the selection of AEG.

Dirtyshirt said...

Rachel wants no part of Zenyatta. Jess Jackson makesit official. Next step is the fake injury and retirement. Horse of year? Not even in my top 5 last year. And Rachel has to worry about that fucking monster quality road now too...

El Angelo said...

I'm glad we can always rely on considerate, thoughtful and lucid debate on the comments here.

DiscreetPicks said...

Come on Dirty, get a grip. Not even Top 5? Maybe you put Gio Ponti ahead of her, but i can't see her worse than third. She had a great year. But i'm still pissed about my Derby future on Rachel @ 125/1, lol. Wiggins should've gone ahead and entered her in the Derby. Maybe she would've won, maybe not, but i think she deserved the chance. Same as Eight Belles the year before, who ran a fantastic race that was pretty much forgotten in the aftermath.