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As I walked down to Zuccotti Park/Liberty Square in the predawn hours of October 14, I could hear “the people’s mic” and the people’s resounding cheers over three blocks away. . . but the biggest cheer came soon after I wedged my way into the park. . . .
[A day outside has eaten my writing time, and my sleeping time, so please bear with my mostly vocal conversation today.]
Oh, and in case you are jonesing for more nuclear news, the NRC finally got around to posting the video and transcript to the outreach sessions from last week that I wrote about earlier. The “pro” nuclear video was up last Friday, but the concerned citizens panel was just posted this morning, eight days after the event. (And they don’t make it easy. I have no direct link; you have to go to the “Spotlight” section on the left side of the NRC homepage. Warning, the link there will open a Silverlight player and auto-download a PDF.)
As I stood witness to the Triangle Shirtwaist fire centennial commemoration at the corner of Washington Place and Green Street on Friday, March 25, I was surprised and impressed by the size of the crowd, but the most unexpected moment of the day came when New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg stepped to the microphone.
Every other speaker (and there were many–from Labor Sec. Hilda Solis and Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) to labor leaders Mary Kay Henry and Bruce Raynor) was met with cheers by the thousands in attendance at the rally. . . but not Mayor Mike. The pro-labor crowd loudly booed and heckled Bloomberg from start to finish. The chants of “get off the stage” were so loud that I (standing right under a speaker) could not hear Bloomberg at all until the organizers turned up the PA.
The billionaire mayor has spent a lot of time of late making Unions his favorite whipping boy for NYC’s budget woes. Bloomberg has proposed pension cuts for police officers and firefighters, threatened to lay off thousands of teachers, and routinely treats construction accidents as the cost of doing business.
[To watch the video in a separate window, click here.]
An "amateurish" car bomb (to use MYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s word) was discovered early Saturday evening when a street vendor reported smoke emerging from a parked Nissan Pathfinder near the corner of 45th Street and Broadway in New York City’s Times Square. A collection of fireworks, propane tanks, and other explosives were later removed from the SUV by NYPD bomb squad. There are no reported injuries.
Mayor Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly held a press conference at 2:15am local time (video above–a transcript will be added to this post when it becomes available). "We have no idea who did this or why," said Bloomberg. The mayor–who had quickly returned from Washington, DC, where he had been attending the White House correspondents’ dinner–however does go on to call it terrorism, saying that he had remarked to people in DC that every terrorist has a map of NYC in his pocket. During the Q&A that followed the statements, Bloomberg went further, stating that "There are people around the world who feel threatened by our freedoms. . . and target the symbol of those freedoms, New York City."
To repeat, at this writing, there is no information available as to the perpetrator or the motive.
The mayor "assured" those at the presser that they expect to learn more from surveillance cameras because "there are lots of cameras" in the area.
The mayor and local television report that the Connecticut license plates on the SUV were traced to different car that had precviously been sent to a junk yard.