Washington D.C., U.S.A.
Donald Trump makes his exit after four years of executive carnage in the most dignified way he can.
Washington D.C., U.S.A.
Donald Trump makes his exit after four years of executive carnage in the most dignified way he can.
Slyvain Sylvain, 69, Rhythm And Lead Guitarist, New York Dolls
Marsha Zuzula, 73, Co-CEO Of Megaforce Records
Jessica Campbell, 38, Actress, Television And Film, Physician
Tanya Roberts, 65, Actress, Film And Television
Siegfried Fischbacher, 81, Magician, Tiger King
Marion Ramsey, 73, Actress, Television And Film
A New Bad Days Special Bulletin:
Kew Gardens, Queens, New York
2021 was barely over an hour old when two groups of men got into a brawl while a party was going on at one of the rooms inside a hotel. The fight spilled out onto the street by the front entrance. As the rumble continued, shots were fired and one man got hit in the leg and died from his wounds and two other men also got struck and hospitalized. Four men involved in the brawl and killing fled the scene of the crime.
What makes this incident distinctive besides being the first homicide of the year following a year that had the most murders New York City has had in 11 years and the amount of shootings and victims than in the last two years combined is where this took place; the Umbrella Hotel, where only 4 months earlier a shooting following a brawl happen inside the lobby, blowing out the revolving and regular door windows of the entrance.
Despite persistent community complaints and condemnations by City Council members and the current President of Queens Donovan Richards and their universal demands to shut down, the Umbrella continued to run it’s business for months. Although not entirely as a place for high end lodging but for speakeasy DJ and bottle parties, brazenly flaunting pandemic guidelines. Spillover from these unusual and illicit events lead to consistent environmental noise disruptions aggravating residents of the usually quiet neighborhoods, with drunk patrons milling about the area, booming systems from idling cars and also blowing up fireworks on some occasions.
Reaction from the NYPD and Mayor de Blasio when pressed about the wanton illicit activity and crime at the Umbrella went with unfilled promises of enforcement and habitual indifference and this activity naturally continued. And as the history of this sleazebag hotel as showed, it continued naturally before, because ever since this hotel got built, it’s been a pox on the area despite what the developers and management originally proposed when it got zoned for building in the neighborhood, that it would be filled with upper class lodgers and residents once it got built. The expectations made for it would be for town of Kew Gardens to have a veneer of cool to the area, kind of like high end towns like Williamsburg and Long Island City with similar lux hotels.
Except what they got wasn’t cool, but “Kewl” and it only resulted in diminishing returns…
That’s another interesting twist, because before it was the Umbrella Hotel, it was a national chain hotel the Comfort Inn and apparently it had trouble getting the clientele it desired and decided to house the homeless in all those vacant rooms to make up for whatever revenue was lost, which was apparently a helluva surprise for people who were already renting there. Oh, that’s another thing, this wasn’t just a hotel but a mixed use building with “luxury” apartments.
Apparently, some of the new and depressingly impoverished clientele for the “Kewl” were wreaking havoc on the streets in the vicinity of it and nearby locales, which included the Union Turnpike transit hub, with reports of aggressive panhandling on the sidewalks, mentally ill men yelling at random people, and drug and fecal detritus found in the stairwells of the station.
In the 3 years since that scoop, it’s not known when the owners or proprietors (whoever they are) changed the name to Umbrella from the lame Kewl or if it’s even still owned by the Comfort. It’s not even known if anyone is renting the luxury apartments there anymore (probably keeping quiet). But it definitely was still operating as a homeless shelter even while still renting out room to travelers vacationing in Queens while devolving further into a den of iniquity.
But because of the pandemic, the Umbrella continued taking in the homeless because of city and state guidelines to prevent contagion but evidently willingly booked rooms for illegal ragers for months despite state bans of indoor gatherings of more than 10 people.
After the deadly shooting and immediate demands of its closing by officials and the community and with de Blasio feeling the pressure after years of insouciance about the hotel’s well known notoriety he finally closed the hotel down for business and probably abolished their contract to house the homeless too. And a man had to lose his life for it to be done. Which is actually the modus operandi policy of NYC government, which is to let crime and urban decay continue as long as people don’t notice or don’t die.
What really makes the Umbrella Hotel saga deranged is that with all the ruckus of wanton behavior and crime going on there is that the Queens Criminal Courthouse and the District Attorney’s office is a 5 minute walk away from there.
And also a defense attorney’s office for your convenience.
Apparently, these venues and salient facts had an influence on sudden proactive enforcement against the Umbrella Hotel’s sordid existence with the arrest of a 68-year-old bell clerk. Despite Queens D.A. Melinda Katz’s grandstanding collar, no one in management or even the owner have not been held accountable for their bigger part in the allowance and profiting from the illegal goings on at their establishment or the chaos that ensued.
And the four men suspected of the murder are still running free on the streets.
Great job Mr. Mayor and Councilor Katz.
Sheldon Adelson, 87, Casino Magnate, Avaricious Oligarch, Disaster Capitalist, War And Hate Monger, Cosplay Philanthropist, Enabler Of Divisive Politics And Isreali Government Run Apartheid, Top Fundraiser Of Trump’s Presidency, Lowlife
Phil Spector, 81, Music Producer, Inventor Of The Wall Of Sound, Eccentric Gun Nut, Convicted Murderer
Rockaway Beach, Queens, New York
A decision to award a 15-year Rockaway Beach Boardwalk concession contract to a new company could result in the eviction of a handful of beloved boardwalk businesses, say worried beachgoers and eatery owners.
The New York City Parks Department has contracted with Rockaway Beach Bazaar LLC, a company formed by the owners of Brooklyn Bazaar and nearby Riis Park Beach Bazaar, to renovate, operate and maintain three beachfront cafes, one shop and 20 additional units for the next decade and a half. The properties include the popular bars and restaurants Rippers, Low Tide and Caracas.
The LLC outbid Rockaway Beach Club, a coalition of local business owners that won the contract to operate concessions at Beach 106th, Beach 97th and Beach 86th Street in 2011. The Rockaway Times first reported on the contract.
The longtime tenants and many of their customers say they worry the new operator will evict the eateries or raise rents.
“The Rockaway Beach club has been the umbrella of love, hard work and fostered the CULTURE of the Rockaway we all know today,” the Rockaway Beach shop Zingara Vintage wrote on Instagram Friday.
The store is located on Beach 91st Street, about two blocks from the boardwalk, and opens occasional pop-up shops outside Rippers. “It’s because of them that so many of us have had the times of our lives on the Rockaway Boardwalk,” Zingara said.
Zingara’s post also described a concern among many boardwalk businesses: even those offered leases to remain in their beachfront buildings may lose control of bar sales, a crucial moneymaker.
“This would crush their business,” Zingara said. “And what about the dozen or so other small businesses that operate in the concessions ? Where will they go?”
The businesses in place have weathered COVID-19 and helped restore the boardwalk in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, said Rockaway resident Sarina Parachini, whose husband owns Rippers, located near Beach 86th Street.
“These are all Rockaway businesses owned by people from the Rockaways,” Parachini said. “We just got through COVID. We were on the boardwalk for Sandy, we rebuilt after Sandy in a huge way.”
So the Riis Park Beach Bazaar LLC has now rechristened themselves as the Rockaway Beach Bazaar LLC and are summarily anointed by de Blasio’s NYC Parks dept to run Rockaway Beach’s busiest part of the boardwalk for 15 years.
To quote a scene from the surreal suspense series Twin Peaks; “It’s happening again.”
As I documented here for a few years now this LLC, which has had almost as many name changes as Eric Prince’s war mercenary corporation Blackwater to adapt to the times and also to cover for their past failures from their own bottom line decisions, got tasked by NYC Parks and National Parks Service to “revitalize” Riis Park with their annual summer event of upscale foodie and leisure lifestyle culture consumerism. And as I observed and reported, while it did much to rejunivate the boardwalk with new concessions which included the restoration of the Riis Park Bathhouse, there was absolutely no improvements to infrastructure or even basic environmental maintenance like a sufficient amount of garbage cans or even intermittent collection of trash which piled up like sand dunes at the end of the night.
And after all that prospective allure the concept of the Riis Bazaar LLC conveyed, many areas and public amenities remained in ruins during their time here.
The only revitalization that occurred in Riis Park only happened where the Bazaar’s concessions were set up and it was never more pronounced than this year of the pandemic. While every other outdoor event was cancelled as New York was still on full lockdown, the Riis Park Beach Bazaar still went on as scheduled (even as restaurants on the Rockaway Beach boardwalk weren’t allowed to open yet). When the lockdown was finally rescinded, the tale of two beaches continued on the Riis boardwalk, as the boardwalk by the Bazaar was filled with tables yet the popular grilling area was devoid of them except by the gondolas and all the grills were removed because of the peculiar arbitrary ban of outdoor grilling from social distancing guidelines.
Even though the pandemic did have a devastating effect on the Riis Bazaar, Gateway NPS decided not to renew their lease, which should be a validation their failure for their attempt to revitalize the beach when it didn’t even need revitalization because people always came here (just not the people who spend frivolously enough).
Although Mayor de Blasio and some morons at the NYC Parks Dept. clearly refuse to see it that way. They have so much confidence in the former Riis Bazaar that they gave them this lengthy contract during the Christmas holiday while no one was paying attention and not many was Zooming in to see the hearing. Except the people that are worried about being supplanted, the people and businesses that make up the Rockaway Group LLC.
Of course the city’s and Rockaway Bazaar LLC’s s rationale behind this sneaky deal is yet again, “revitalization”. Which is immensely laughable because the fact that Rockaway is actually a more popular locale than it’s ever been. Even during this COVID summer, citizens still showed up en masse even with a drop off of tourists, which is probably where they are deriving their “revitalizing” theory from. What’s ironic is that these concessions and businesses that the Bazaar LLC are the same kind they were pushing for five years at Riis. Although the distinction between the Group LLC and the Bazaar LLC is that they have been plying their business and lives locally while the Bazaar LLC are straight outta Brooklyn and have been pushing that brand in their entire existence and wound up gentrifying themselves out of there and Riis, justifying the Rockaway Group LLC’s how reckless they are with finances and shouldn’t be trusted at all with the city’s largesse for 15 years.
While their treatment of employees of the Bazaar LLC is news to me (though not surprising), they do seem to have a ruthless bent. Shortly before it was announced their presence at Riis was final, their high end nook “The Dropout” posted photos of trash left behind in the grill area from a party the night before, one of them clearly from the front passenger seat of a car.
After this was dispensed on social media (and while the Dropout was closed permanently that day) and even though visitations to the grill area and gatherings were permitted (and there will still a stunning lack of disposal cans) suddenly Gateway Park enacted new rules for the entire beach at Riis and a ludicrous new closing time at 9 p.m. and the still popular grilling area to be closed at 8 p.m.
And the NPS weren’t fucking around either. The park rangers and police were combing the boardwalk and park space right after the sun went down. Leaving Riis Park, a perennial party place, a veritable ghost town.
Apparently, the Riis Park Bazaar and notably the Dropout must have been seething with envy that genuine vibrancy was going to go on without them, so in their sudden environmental concern about pollution of the beach of which they also continued to contribute too this year, they weaponized it against the people who weren’t their patrons.
So it’s easy to see why this is such a tremendously shitty deal that had to be done with dirty conniving tactics. The Rockaway Group LLC’s are right in their demand for this to be stopped also because it sure looks like tweeding was involved and the ludicrous longevity of this 15-year contract to the Riis cum Rockaway Bazaar has the potential to make privatization of the boardwalk a reality because while Riis Park was still a shambles when they were occupying it, the Rockaway Boardwalk is already set up for them because of the stunning repair and modernization and resiliency modifications of the beach with the sand walls and the long overdue and current placement of groins that are happening right now.
Basically, the Rockaway Beach Bazaar will have to try really hard to fuck up the hook up gifted to them from our elected and appointed officials. But if their record at Riis shows, they probably will and will sadly take down local businesses with them at the worst time right now for them despite the kind words coming from their claims and future press releases.
Making the full on gentrification of Rockaway Beach not hard to reach.
Firefighters on Saturday morning extinguished a seven-alarm fire that started late Friday night in a Flushing storefront and extended into an adjacent building, according to the FDNY.
After receiving a call just before midnight on Friday, Jan. 8, regarding the blaze at a three-story building located at 136-15 37th Ave., approximately 50 units and 200 FDNY personnel responded to the scene to fight the fire.
The blaze was first classified as a two-alarm fire at 12:11 a.m. on Jan. 9, before slowly progressing to a seven-alarm classification by 5:19 a.m.
Tommy Lasorda, 93, Manager, Los Angeles Dodgers, Two-Time World Champions, U.S. Gold Medal Winner
Albany, New York
For about 10 months now during this pandemic, Governor Cuomo has wielded his emergency executive powers anointed to him by the New York State Assembly and Senate with equal incompetence and malfeasance. So instead of repealing them now that there are multiple vaccines to fight the coronavirus and nearly a million available to dispense to the citizenry they all serve, they would rather give the Pandemic Power Tripper even more disturbing powers for him to exploit so he can keep them and his stature and COVID19 celebrity secure.
They want to give Cuomo the ability to deploy the authorities to detain citizens suspected of carrying the contagion
Not only is this legislation brazenly unconstitutional, easily fraying everyone’s fourth amendment right, but like everything else that’s resulted from Cuomo’s micromanaging of the pandemic response will result in bumbling bureaucratic errors and chaos. Kind of like one of the seminal scenes in the movie Brazil when the SWAT teams search for government dissenters.
The coincidental timing of this bill is uncanny (like mostly everything else that’s happened to benefit the elites in recent American history) even though there are 3 vaccines available to the general public and doing this in attempt to stem another epidemic is going to an unnecessary extreme because the Governor announced yesterday that there was a man infected with a new strain of COVID that has spread in England, which led Prime Minister Boris Johnson to shut down the whole country (but not the schools (!!!)).
It’s not known if this new strain is as fatal as the contagion that’s already killed millions but apparently it doesn’t matter because this is about Cuomo maintaining his status as King of Lockdown New York. Because of his decision to only let hospitals distribute the vaccines instead of counties set up centers to inoculate people as fast as possible, it has botched the rollout of the vaccines and has left more people vulnerable to contagion. Plus add the fact that people don’t trust the vaccine because of myriad reasons from concerns of withdrawal symptoms and allergies and of course Cuomo initially sowing doubt about the vaccines because Trump fast tracked it to get the economy rolling again.
What’s amazing about this new bill and edict that gives Cuomo more authority is that only a week ago he wanted to open Buffalo Bills stadium for in person attendance for their long awaited playoff game next week with provisions that everyone get tested and then submit to be traced after the game ended. Basically, the game is being treated like a state surveillance experiment. Even though it will only the arena will be filled to 1/3 capacity, there’s no guarantee that no one will be following protocols like mask wearing or distancing once they leave the game. It’s not unimaginable that if someone gets infected they can be whisked away by state troopers or local cops if they are shopping in a supermarket or mall or even participating in or organizing a protest.
To give a real life idea of what kind of blow back from this will ensue:
Another disturbing factor about this legalization of rendition is the anti-transparency policy already established by the Cuomo administration during this pandemic, as with the actual amount of the deceased caused by Cuomo’s edict giving immunity to nursing homes for taking in COVID patients the same secrecy is being implemented regarding the vaccine rollout in the entire state of New York.
This is why this new bill needs to eviscerated. This bill is more to cover Governor Cuomo’s ass than any concern for the health and well-being of his constituency. This is not just about stopping a pandemic, but also stopping the sickness of this new normal of paranoia and limited freedom under a kakistocratic autocracy being instituted under this megalomaniac mook from Queens.
New York, New York
At the last “media availability” thrown by Mayor de Blasio, he decreed to set the date March 14, 2021 as “COVID-19 Remembrance Day” to recognize the first death of a New York City resident from getting infected by coronavirus. Even though he’s as much responsible for the contagion’s spread by also playing down the severity of the disease before that date and horrendously botched the response to it.
Since The Blaz is trying to commemorate a tragic event that caused devastation to the city with a day to memorialize all those that needlessly got sickened and perished from the disease and also as a day of reflection to learn from mistakes made and better prepare for another pandemic (but more likely to put his name on something historic) it’s apropos to also recognize this day, January 1, as a major day of significant mourning and tragedy.
For this is the day in 2014, that William de Blasio Wilhelm became Mayor Of New York City. This day, January 1, is a remembrance of the beginning of the decline of the city and how he has led it on a downhill road to ruin with his incompetence and corruption which for seven years has led to more social division, more inequities in services in housing and transit and more urban decay.
And to truly commemorate the remembrance of the day Bill de Blasio became mayor, why not do it with a dance and song by hizzoner and his tax boondoggle wife in the ultimate elitist statement and blatant display by a man and woman who treat the city like they own it.
Congratulations Blaz. You truly earned this honor.
And citizens, whenever you look around anywhere you are in NYC and want to wretch or have the inclination to desert this place for somewhere else, remember January 1 2014.