Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Flakes of Booty Capitalism

Floyd Flake takes to the pages of the NY Post today to tout the "community benefits" of the awarding of the Aqueduct deal to the AEG group: "Large-scale development efforts usually do not benefit the communities where they are planned because of haphazard planning, lack of imagination, surface-level community engagement, unqualified participants or limited subject-matter expertise among its leaders. The selected Aqueduct project and associated development will benefit Queens because it possesses these indispensable elements at an unrivaled level."

What a dump! Reminds us of when the cable contracts were first being bid and Herman Badillo and the late Ramon Velez formed a group to "partner" with Cablevision for the rights to wire the Bronx. Herman gathered all of the Bronx Puerto Rican elected officials in the hospital room of Velez and proceeded to give a great speech on Puerto Rican pride. When he finished, Assemblyman Louie Nine turned to him and said; "You know, Herman, every time you wave the Puerto Rican flag, I hold on tightly to my wallet."

And so it goes with Floyd Flake, community benefactor-a man for who justice is "just us." He is the ultimate booty capitalist, glommimg on to developers in order to scrape up as many of the crumbs as possible from any local development deal. This was the same guy who, along with Congressman Greg Meeks (already crying racism about the criticism of the AEG deal), tried to make a deal to promote Wal-Mart in Southeast Queens five years ago.

So when the Bloomberg lackey Flake talks about the community, everyone-but especially the state's tax payers-should hold on to their wallets. And let's be very clear. The Aqueduct deal is not about who can bestow booty on any local community, but about the best deal for the state coffers. All of Flake's sanctimonious puffery here is simply misdirection-deflecting attention from another of the Reverend's empire building, personal aggrandizement, efforts.