Whoever asks me a question about city policies gets a fat lip.
The High Line Park, New York, N.Y.
Mayor de “Faustio”, still on his city hall reality tour, had his massive crack team of aides arranged a trip on the upscale High Line Park in Chelsea. The stroll was accompanied by students from the P.S. 33 Chelsea Prep School, some of his commissioners and his nemesii gaggle of reporters.
The nice unseasonably humid day was marred as Mayor Big Slow arrived 20 minutes late and seemed grossly unprepared about the aspects of the upscale gentrifying park and the fact that he has never visited it once in his term. (Well, he has been busy) The students were very knowledgeable about the lush greenery around them, enough to impress the mayor and were very observant and inquisitive about the press accompanying him and how he was trying to ignore them. He responded to the kids that they “followed him around”. Silly press doing their jobs to inform the public about accountability from elected officials and authority figures.
But it’s where he went later to his alma mater at New York University to meet with an old roommate of his that he dropped this Freudian slip grenade to a student reporter as he was exiting the building.
According to The New York Times:
As Mr. de Blasio left the university, a student reporter named Sam Raskin, tried to ask a question about affordable housing. “We’re not doing that right now,” the mayor said as he made his way out the building
Emphasis fucking mine.
“We’re not doing that right now”. Ok, now this quote is isolated and out of context. And there is no video, as of yet, to see the expression on his face or body language delivering these lines. It definitely is though, his usual response when he refuses to answer questions that doesn’t, to him, involve what he policy is discussing, as when he bolted from a press conference in front of a billionaire row tower in Midtown. But now as witnessed by journalists during his recent electioneering stroll as he refused to answer any questions pertaining to policy and his plans and policies when/if he gets re-elected, it has devolved into full blown venomous contempt at anyone that asks a question, no matter how soft, like when he was asked about the sumac the student pointed out, but certainly those that are pertinent to the constituency.
“We’re not doing that right now”. This dismissive and insulting response may just damned himself and his mayoralty despite it being an attempt to insultingly blow off a budding journalist. And might have put any credibility regarding his affordable housing plan into the crapper. Where it belongs. For the majority of these mixed income buildings, even the measly 20% that thousands of the poorest citizens of the 5 boroughs are not affordable at all. The area median incomes continue to rise because of overvalued real estate speculation, more luxury towers keep rising and even the market rate apts. in these new buildings are having an effect on the actual rents and the qualifications for yearly salaries to apply for them. A recent crop of new buildings in Brooklyn and Long Island City measly affordable apartments start at around the 800-1000 range while the majority of the units go for the insane and fabricated market rates of $2,000 for a studio, $2,500 for a one bedroom, and $3,000 for a two bedroom.
The real crazy part of de Faustio’s 10 year plan for 200,000 affordable apartments, in congruence with probably more than a half a million luxury apartments, is that the plan was already in fruition back in 2012 (and even that plan was horrible and detrimental). So even though he implemented his policy just last year, some of the buildings and the actual policy were already being used, so technically, Bill hasn’t produced much. Except make this affordable housing scheme even worse, by licking the boots of his predatory developer donors and listening to the technocratic stratagems of their public relations firms and his deputy mayor Alicia Glen.
Another take from the Times piece should make anyone pause at this man’s disgusting obliviousness, which possibly the kids there did too. At 26th street on the High Line, there is this big window overlooking the street and acts as a cinemascope for the view east, which consists of the project housing across 10th avenue just across the street from the upscale leisure and arts scenes and tower utopia that have engulfed the stretch:
The entourage stopped at an area of benches set out over 26th Street and looked through a frame at a public housing development across the street.
“It is just a big open viewing station; that’s all it does?” Mr. de Blasio asked.
“It was meant to showcase a lot of what people don’t see in the neighborhood,” Robert Hammond, the co-founder and executive director of the Friends of the High Line, told him.
“Very cool,” the mayor said.
Very. Cool. If he can only get a view of the utter lack of coolness of similar projects in other places, as those buildings roofs continue to leak, mold continues to fester, and rats and roaches continue to invade and spread disease. This is what’s going on now, as it’s been for nearly a half century, with the real affordable housing in the city he governs.
Student journalist Sam Raskin may have finally got the correct answer from this mayor about the affordable housing stagnation going on, albeit inadvertently. And de Faustio may have exposed himself as the stupid fucking idiot he is just because he couldn’t answer a simple question. Especially something he deceptively bragged about not long ago too.
He knows what it is, and that’s why he is stonewalling. 2 recent stories detail how his current plan is not helping the working poor at all, and how the overvalued rental market rate is exacerbating the costs of living here for the majority of tax-paying residents whose salaries can’t keep up when the rent is due compared with the wealthier citizens, who can actually afford to live in these alleged affordable housing buildings and have a better chance winning the lottery for the apartments they would qualify for, and still have a robust savings account.
Good job Mr. Raskin and the kids at P.S. 33, you all did more to expose this fauxgressive neoliberal jerk than what the dailies and the prosecutors have tried to do since his elected office transgressions began 3 years ago.