Trump ‘aggressively pursued’ government post in USSR in 1980s – 10:53 AM 5/26/2017

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E! Brooklyn ebklyn.com: Community group votes to co-name BK Heights street after female BBridge mastermind 7:41 AM 5/26/2017

Community group votes to co-name BK Heights street after female BBridge mastermind
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See this story at BrooklynPaper.com.

By Lauren Gill

Brooklyn Paper

Dont call it a miss-nomer!

Community Board 2s transportation committee voted to co-name a Brooklyn Heights street for Emily Warren Roebling, who helped oversee the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge from her house in the Heights after her husband, chief engineer Washington Roebling, was stricken with the bends.

E! Brooklyn ebklyn.com

 

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Trump ‘aggressively pursued’ government post in USSR in 1980s

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Trump ‘aggressively pursued’ government post in USSR in 1980s

mikenova shared this story from Politics Rss Article only.

Donald Trump, in the mid-1980s, aggressively pursued an official government post to the USSR, according to a Nobel Peace Prize winner with whom Trump interacted at the time.

“He already had Russia mania in 1986, 31 years ago,” asserts Bernard Lown, a Boston-area cardiologist known for inventing the defibrillator and sharing the 1985 Nobel Peace Prize with a top Soviet physician in recognition of their efforts to promote denuclearization.

Lown, now 95 and retired in Newton, Mass., tells The Hollywood Reporter that Trump sought and secured a meeting with him in 1986 to solicit information about Mikhail Gorbachev. (Gorbachev had become the USSR’s head of state — and met with Lown — the year before.)

During this meeting, Lown says, the fast-rising businessman disclosed that he would be reaching out to then-president Ronald Reagan to try to secure an official post to the USSR in order to negotiate a nuclear disarmament deal on behalf of the United States, a job for which Trump felt he was the only one fit.

“He said to me, ‘I hear you met with Gorbachev, and you had a long interview with him, and you’re a doctor, so you have a good assessment of who he is,'” Lown recalls.

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“So I asked, ‘Why would you want to know?’ And he responded, ‘I intend to call my good friend Ronnie,’ meaning Reagan, ‘to make me a plenipotentiary ambassador for the United States with Gorbachev.’ Those are the words he used. And he said he would go to Moscow and he’d sit down with Gorbachev, and then he took his thumb and he hit the desk and he said, ‘And within one hour the Cold War would be over!’ I sat there dumbfounded. ‘Who is this self-inflated individual? Is he sane or what?'”

The White House did not respond to a request for comment.

Lithuania-born Lown, who today is professor of cardiology emeritus at the Harvard School of Public Health, had been the subject of considerable media attention shortly before he first heard the name Trump.

In October 1985, he and Yevgeny I. Chazov, the personal physician of the Kremlin’s senior leadership (including Gorbachev), were chosen to share the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, a group they co-founded in 1980 that had grown to include more than 150,000 members in 49 countries.

And in December 1985, shortly after collecting their Nobel medals in Oslo, Lown joined Chazov for a meeting at the Kremlin with Gorbachev, who unexpectedly had come into power that March, making Lown one of the first Westerners to spend time with him.

It wasn’t long after Lown returned to the United States that he learned about Trump. “I get a call from New York and it was a Wall Street broker who was a friend of Trump’s,” Lown recalls, declining to name the individual.

“He says, ‘Trump would like to see you,’ and I said, ‘Who is Trump?’ I had no idea.”

He continues, “This fellow was a member of the board of the Lown Cardiovascular Research Foundation, this Wall Street fellow, and he knew that we were short on funds for the research that I outlined and that we had to do in the following few years. He says, ‘Here’s somebody who might be a source of [FUNDING]. Why don’t you meet him? He wants to talk to you — he asked me to arrange it.’ So I came into New York and went to Trump Tower and met him for lunch.”

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Lown says it quickly became apparent that Trump had an agenda of his own. “I was sitting there in this glass bubble, overlooking New York, and feeling, ‘What am I doing here?'” he recalls. “He seemed totally disjointed.”

“I talked to [TRUMP]extensively about my experience with Gorbachev,” Lown recalls. “I talked for about 20 minutes or so, about how I thought Gorbachev behaved, blah, blah, and he sat there, sort of listening. He was fidgeting and I realized he had a short attention span.”

Lown emphasizes that the whole situation felt strange.

“I thought there was another agenda, perhaps, but I didn’t know what that was,” he says. “I was not sure about his motivation for why he was doing it. But it puts together sort of a continuum that began way back in ’86, with his fixation on Russia — the Soviet Union, then.”

Trump and Lown never spoke again.

Though the lengths to which Trump went to learn about Gorbachev and to secure an official post from the Americans never have been revealed, Trump’s interest in “making a deal” with the Soviets was widely reported — and mocked — at the time.

In an April 8, 1984 profile in The New York Times, Trump revealed that concern about a nuclear holocaust had plagued him since his uncle, the groundbreaking nuclear physicist Dr. John Trump, first spoke to him about it 15 years earlier.

“His greatest dream is to personally do something about the problem,” wrote the Times’ William E. Geist (NBC anchor Willie Geist’s father), “and, characteristically, Donald Trump thinks he has an answer to nuclear armament: Let him negotiate arms agreements — he who can talk people into selling $100 million properties to him for $13 million.”

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Geist continued, somewhat snarkily, “The idea that he would ever be allowed to go into a room alone and negotiate for the United States, let alone be successful in disarming the world, seems the naive musing of an optimistic, deluded young man who has never lost at anything he has tried. But he believes that through years of making his views known and through supporting candidates who share his views, it could happen someday.”

Trump expounded on these ambitions in a November 15, 1984 Washington Post profile at the urging, he said, of his mentor and lawyer Roy Cohn, who was best known as Joseph McCarthy’s chief counsel during the Army-McCarthy hearings.

The Post’s Lois Romano asked Trump for specifics about how he would approach a U.S.-Soviet deal, and recounted how he demurred (using terms familiar to those who followed the 2016 presidential campaign): “‘I wouldn’t want to make my opinions public,’ he says. ‘I’d rather keep those thoughts to myself or save them for whoever else is chosen… It’s something that somebody should do that knows how to negotiate and not the kind of representatives that I have seen in the past.’ He could learn about missiles, quickly, he says. ‘It would take an hour-and-a-half to learn everything there is to learn about missiles… I think I know most of it anyway. You’re talking about just getting updated on a situation.'”

In Ron Rosenbaum’s November 1985 profile of Trump in Manhattan, Inc. magazine (later republished as part of the 1987 book Manhattan Passions: True Tales of Power, Wealth and Excess), Trump discussed his obsession with brokering this ultimate deal, stating, “Nothing matters as much to me now.”

He coyly suggested that he already was “dealing at a very high level on this,” hinting at connections in Washington and at the White House, and that negotiators like him were needed: “There’s a vast difference between somebody who’s been consistently successful and somebody who’s been working for a relatively small amount of money in governmental service for many years, in many cases because the private sector, who have seen these people indirectly, didn’t choose to hire these people, any of them, because it didn’t find them to be particularly capable.”

By December 1985, Trump’s infatuation with negotiating a deal between the Americans and the Soviets was so widely known that The New York Times’ George Vecsey proclaimed, “People used to titter when Donald Trump said he wanted to broker a nuclear-arms reduction… If the United States gave Donald Trump an official title and let him loose on the arms race, he might lay off on his threat to darken the western sky of Manhattan with his personal Brasilia North. Make peace, not skyscrapers, that’s the general idea.”

It wasn’t long after the Trump-Lown meeting in 1986 that Trump made his first trip to the Soviet Union: In July 1987, he traveled to Moscow and met with Gorbachev.

“The ostensible subject of their meeting was the possible development of luxury hotels in the Soviet Union by Mr. Trump,” The New York Times wrote at the time. “But Mr. Trump’s calls for nuclear disarmament were also well-known to the Russians.” (Trump told Playboy three years later, “Generally, these guys are much tougher and smarter than our representatives.”)

In the fall of 1987, Trump, a registered Republican who had made large contributions to Democrats as well, hinted that he might make a run for the presidency in 1988 — but for which party it wasn’t clear.

That Sept. 2, he took out a full-page advertisement in three major newspapers criticizing the Reagan Administration’s foreign policy under the headline, “There’s nothing wrong with America’s Foreign Defense Policy that a little backbone can’t cure.” Asked why he had done so, his spokesperson said, “There is absolutely no plan to run for mayor, governor or United States senator. He will not comment about the Presidency.” A month later, though, he did: ”I’m not running for anything,” he told The New York Times, while adding, ”I believe that if I did run for President, I’d win.”

Trump went on to give a series of political speeches that fall, some of which, according to the Times, touched on “speeding up nuclear disarmament negotiations with the Soviet Union.”

In December 1987, Gorbachev made an historic three-day trip to the U.S. for a summit with Reagan that included a White House state dinner. There, in a receiving line, was Trump, whom Gorbachev had met in Moscow just five months earlier.

Trump subsequently recounted their conversation to The Washington Post: “They want to have a great hotel, and they want me to be the one to do it.”

Trump didn’t run for president in 1988. A Trump hotel never was built in the Soviet Union, which collapsed in 1991. But Trump’s interactions with Russia were only just beginning.

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Plates of Cake/Hans Chew/Rosali/Dark Tea Union Pool Sat May 27 Brooklyn Local News

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What Mussolini and Democrats Have in Common: Neo-Fascism is in Fashion

mikenova shared this story from Observer.

“You’re a fascist!” Today this is a label as commonly hurled as it is poorly understood. President Donald Trump, that progressive New York guy, is a fascist, we’re told. Then there’s the Antifa (“anti-fascist action”) movement, which “fights” the F-threat by committing violence in the streets like Brownshirts. Well played.

The Online Etymology Dictionary, generally sober in its rendering of information, amusingly writes of “fascism” that it was applied to certain groups’ ideology from 1923 and has been “applied to everyone since the internet.” In reality, however, the term’s misapplication didn’t start with the virtual world but with virtual history. Yet since I’m fairly sure at least a few of us aren’t fascists, let’s examine what the ideology is, starting with what it isn’t.

Authentic fascism never had, contrary to popular belief, a racial agenda. Its primary founding father, Italian dictator Benito Mussolini, said in 1932, “Race? It is a feeling, not a reality. Ninety-five percent, at least. Nothing will ever make me believe that biologically pure races can be shown to exist today… National pride has no need of the delirium of race.”

The fascists considered racialism destructive of one of their chief aims: national unity. In fact, when Mussolini deferred to Adolf Hitler and enacted some anti-Jewish laws (strictly speaking, these weren’t “racial” laws, but reflected their spirit) just prior to WWII, they were often decried as anti-fascist.

A Creature of the Right?

Mussolini had always been a socialist. He’d actually been the chief editor of the Italian Socialist Party’s newspaper Avanti! (in Italian, “Forward!” which, interestingly, became one of Barack Obama’s slogans). He was expelled at WWI’s start—but not for rejecting socialist dogma. Rather, while the party opposed the war, Mussolini was among a group of dissident leftists who wanted to fight Germany and Austria-Hungary to, you might say, “make the world safe for socialism.”

While a spurned child of the ideology, one of its progeny he remained. At the 1914 Milan Socialist Party meeting where his expulsion was announced, he shouted, “You cannot get rid of me because I am and always will be a socialist. You hate me because you still love me.” And he perhaps had a point. Vladimir Lenin said before a delegation of Italian socialists in 1922, “What a waste that we lost Mussolini. He is a first-rate man who would have led our party to power in Italy.”

Writer George Bernard Shaw, a Fabian Society socialist, might have seconded this endorsement. He once said of the dictator, “Mussolini was further to the left in his political opinions than any of his socialist rivals.” UC Berkeley Professor of Political Science Emeritus Anthony James Gregor, known for research on fascism and Marxism, has called Mussolini “a Marxist ‘heretic.’”

Having said this, there’s debate and confusion over whether Mussolini (and Hitler) was left or right largely because the terms themselves are confusing—and relative. Originating with the French Revolution in 1789, the designations were born because monarchists sat on the right side in the National Assembly, while republicans (that is, those endeavoring to create a republic) occupied the left. Of course, rightists today don’t espouse monarchism, and American leftists fight republicans—at least the capital “R” variety.

Noting that “right” and “left” correspond with “conservative” and “liberal,” also consider that while 1950s American conservatives were staunchly anti-communist, a conservative in the Soviet Union was a communist. And today, European “conservatives” are far more “liberal” than ours.

The explanation is that the only consistent definitions of “conservative” and “liberal” are, respectively, a “desire to maintain the status quo” and a “desire to change it;” thus, as the status quo varies from time to time and place to place, so do the actual beliefs represented by the two political terms.

So the first question is not whether fascism is left or right (in fact, its adherents called it “the Third Way”), which can be a distraction. Before we can place it anywhere on any political spectrum, we must ask: What are actual fascist beliefs?

The ideology, again, was birthed at WWI’s inception when the Italian left split over involvement in the conflict. Mussolini then became the primary founder of fascism, whose name largely derives from the fasces, a “bundle of rods containing an axe with the blade projecting” that would be carried before a Roman magistrate and which symbolized power. But what kind of power was Mussolini’s focus?

Well, as the dictator described fascism, “All within the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state.” Does this sound more like American traditionalists, with their focus on small government, or the Democrats, who seek to unconstitutionally centralize and aggregate ever more power?

Mussolini also once said, “I declare that henceforth capital and labor shall have equal rights and duties as brothers in the fascist family.” Is this reminiscent of American conservatives and their emphasis on economic freedom or the class warfare and regulatory tyranny of our left?

The Italian additionally stated in 1924, “God does not exist—religion in science is an absurdity, in practice an immorality and in men a disease.” Does this sound more like a party known for its “Christian Right” or one whose standard bearer once derided Middle America for clinging to “religion”?

The sad reality is that a neo-fascism is in fashion today, but not because of Trump. Rather, by growing government, empowering it to regulate most everything and allowing “crony capitalism,” we get ever closer to Mussolini’s ideal, “All within the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state.”

And the dictator certainly agreed. Praising Democrat icon Franklin Roosevelt’s 1933 book Looking Forward, he wrote, “Reminiscent of Fascism is the principle that the state no longer leaves the economy to its own devices… Without question, the mood accompanying this [New Deal] sea change resembles that of Fascism.”

Whether we view Mussolini as a man of the “left” or just a man who left sanity, the similarities between fascism’s founding father and our liberals should make them just a tad nervous. It certainly had this effect on one of them, late leftist activist and politician Tom Hayden.

During a radio appearance on “The Chip Wood Show” years ago, Hayden was accused by a caller of being a “communist agitator.” The host defended him, saying that Hayden had no problem with business remaining in private hands as long as the government guaranteed things were done “fairly.” Hayden agreed, providing several examples of how the state must ensure goods and services are distributed equitably.

Wood related their conversation’s denouement in 2010. He told Hayden, “‘What you’ve described isn’t communism or socialism. …Isn’t the system you want—where ownership remains in private hands, but its use is controlled by government—actually a form of fascism?’”

“There was a stunned silence as I continued, ‘In fact, Tom, isn’t it fair to say that the economic system you want to impose on us in the United States is actually classical fascism, as practiced in Hitler’s Germany and Mussolini’s Italy?’”

Hayden’s response? “Click.” He’d hung up the phone. And that’s what happens when you’re hung up on an ideology that may not be quite as “liberal” as you’d like to fancy.

Your Ideal Week: May 25-31, Memorial Day weekend is here

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A carpet of bluebells is blooming at Brooklyn Botanic Garden. Photo: BBG Memorial Day weekend is nigh, and if you are jetting off the Hamptons, the Catskills, the Shore, or somewhere even more exotic, well, good for you, lucky duck! The rest of us will be here holding down the fort, but dont feel too bad for us because there is–as always–a lot to do around these parts over the course of the next week. On Friday night, lace up your skates and get ready to do the hustle at Lola Stars Dreamland Roller Disco, which is doing Saturday Night Fever-themed version of its popular skate night at the LeFrak Center in Prospect Park from 7:30-10pm. After selling out a Friday night show at Kings Theater, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds have added a second night on Saturday and there are still tickets available. If you happened to catch them… Read MoreThe post Your Ideal Week: May 25-31, Memorial Day weekend is here appeared first on Brooklyn Based.

I have several different accents; The Brooklyn accent, Long Island accent, and the Northern NY accent. #NYBot

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I have several different accents; The Brooklyn accent, Long Island accent, and the Northern NY accent.

This #MemorialDayWknd enjoy ALL day access to @AviatorSports’ most popular activities & games. Find more here: http://aviatorsports.com/things-to-do/day-pass pic.twitter.com/mEszTYaAE2

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This enjoy ALL day access to ‘ most popular activities & games. Find more here: http://aviatorsports.com/things-to-do/day-pass …

The deadline to enter the Greenest Block in Brooklyn contest coming up fast, only one week away. More info:

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The deadline to enter the Greenest Block in Brooklyn contest coming up fast, only one week away. More info:

Deadline to enter Greenest Block in Brooklyn contest coming up fast

This weekend brings the unofficial start of summer, meaning its time for organizations and civic groups to enter the 23rd Annual Greenest Block in…

Photo – Thursday’s Front Page:Navy Divers: http://ow.ly/jA5630c1g4p1 Hotel: http://ow.ly/xROA30c1gErJehovah’s Witnesses: http://ow.ly/BZ6l30c1gj4

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Thursday’s Front Page:

Navy Divers: http://ow.ly/jA5630c1g4p
1 Hotel: http://ow.ly/xROA30c1gEr
Jehovah’s Witnesses: http://ow.ly/BZ6l30c1gj4

Report: Jehovah’s Witnesses line up a buyer for 74 Adams St. in DUMBO http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/2017/5/24/report-jehovahs-witnesses-line-buyer-74-adams-st-dumbo

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Report: Jehovah’s Witnesses line up a buyer for 74 Adams St. in DUMBO http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/2017/5/24/report-jehovahs-witnesses-line-buyer-74-adams-st-dumbo

Report: Jehovah’s Witnesses line up a buyer for 74 Adams St. in DUMBO

Going, going, gone.

The Jehovah’s Witnesses have found a buyer for one of their last Brooklyn properties, The Real Deal has reported.

Fleet Week NY: U.S. Navy divers swim with stingrays at New York Aquarium

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Fleet Week NY: U.S. Navy divers swim with stingrays at New York Aquarium

‘We do our part to keep the ships ready to fight at a moments notice’

This weekend, the Navy divers will perform tricks and showcase their skills in Times Square inside a portable tank.

PHOTOS: #Brooklyn Heights Library comes down, section by section. Stone friezes have been removed. #Libraries #NYC http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/2017/5/24/brooklyn-heights-library-comes-down-section-photos pic.twitter.com/fzRaoWuc8c

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PHOTOS: Heights Library comes down, section by section. Stone friezes have been removed. http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/2017/5/24/brooklyn-heights-library-comes-down-section-photos …

Shopkeeper injured in violent jewelry store robbery on Court Street in #Brooklyn Heights. Perp fled down subway. http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/2017/5/25/shopkeeper-injured-violent-jewelry-store-robbery-court-street-brooklyn-heights pic.twitter.com/lr1vpRkYA4

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Shopkeeper injured in violent jewelry store robbery on Court Street in Heights. Perp fled down subway. http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/2017/5/25/shopkeeper-injured-violent-jewelry-store-robbery-court-street-brooklyn-heights …

The deadline to enter the Greenest Block in Brooklyn contest coming up fast, only one week away. More info: http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/2017/5/25/deadline-enter-greenest-block-brooklyn-contest-coming-fast pic.twitter.com/688zyxpoZd

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The deadline to enter the Greenest Block in Brooklyn contest coming up fast, only one week away. More info: http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/2017/5/25/deadline-enter-greenest-block-brooklyn-contest-coming-fast …

.@FleetWeekNYC : US Marine Corps host 1st Marine Day in #Brooklyn Sat. 5K w/ Marines, robot display, martial arts… http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/2017/5/23/fleet-week-new-york-2017-kicks-parade-ships pic.twitter.com/BXFE86D8mZ

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. : US Marine Corps host 1st Marine Day in Sat. 5K w/ Marines, robot display, martial arts… http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/2017/5/23/fleet-week-new-york-2017-kicks-parade-ships …

Norwegian Ridgites march in 17th of May Parade

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By Caroline Spivack

Brooklyn Daily

They were decked out in red, white, and blue — but not for the country you’d think.

An army of Norwegian Ridgites took to Third Avenue for the 65th-annual Norwegian Day parade on May 21. Once a bastion of Scandinavian culture, Bay Ridge’s Nordic community has since dwindled, but every year the parade draws out Norwegians eager to show off their pride for the land of the midnight sun, said one marcher.

“It’s a wonderful celebration that lets us share our traditions,” said Ridgite Anna Pederson, who marched in the parade in a traditional folk costume — known as a bunad — from the Bergen region of Norway, with her 4-year-old grand daughter. “It’s so exciting to see everyone so excited for Norwegian culture, and it’s a great way for me to expose the little one to her roots.”

Hundreds donned Viking garb and traditional Norwegian clothes, which differs depending on what part of the country folks hail from, for the procession that celebrates the signing of Norway’s constitution on May 17, 1814.

The parade is officially known as the 17th of May Parade but is traditionally held on the nearest Sunday. The vibrant march kicked off at Third Avenue and First Street whence it winded its way down to Lief Erikson Park.

Kristen Johnson, who was crowned Miss Norway in April, cruised along the thoroughfare greeting locals who lined the main street. Viking ships sailed behind her, along with a crew of marching bands, accordionists, and bagpipe players.

“I just loved it. There’s not enough events like these that celebrate our culture and to have this in our own backyard is just so cool,” said Bay Ridgite Maria Hagan, whose family is originally from Oslo and initially settled in Sunset Park, where thousands of Scandinavians emigrated stretching back to the 1890s.

And many of those Norwegians moved up to Bay Ridge by the mid-20th Century, which is why the procession is so crucial not only for its historic importance but for keeping the Norwegian traditions alive in Southern Brooklyn.

“It’s a really important celebration for our history,” said Hagan. “But I also think it’s great that people have managed to keep this parade going for so long because it keeps the culture alive in Bay Ridge.”

Reach reporter Caroline Spivack at cspivack@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2523. Follow her on Twitter @carolinespivack.

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Mystery solved! Russian billionaires yacht cant dock because it is illegal

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By Caroline Spivack

Brooklyn Daily

A yacht owned by a Russian oligarch that has floated in Gravesend Bay for more than a month — and drifted there throughout President Trump’s first visit to the city since taking office — is sitting idle because it is illegal for the vessel to dock.

The massive German-made ship Le Grand Bleu is owned by Russian-born billionaire and oil tycoon Eugene Shvidler — who became a U.S. citizen in 1994 — flies Bermuda’s flag. And because the vessel is not a U.S.-flagged ship, was not constructed in the U.S., and is not crewed exclusively by U.S. citizens, federal law prohibits the boat from directly sailing from one American port to the next.

The Merchant Marine Act of 1920, also known as the Jones Act, regulates maritime commerce on domestic waters and solely allows U.S. ships to sail from one local port to the next with ease. Originally intended to promote U.S. shipping, it is a law that has since rocked the boat for those who man foreign flagged ships to avoid steep U.S. taxes or sidestep regulations, according to maritime lawyer Jim Walker.

Shvidler’s ship set sail from Florida on April 13 and cast anchor in Gravesend Bay on April 16, where it has and will remain for as long as he’s in town, unless he wants to incur a hefty fine for docking in New York Harbor or run the risk of the government towing away his football field-length vessel.

Penalties for pulling up to a pier in violation of the Jones Act vary with the value of the merchandise the boat is carrying or of the cost of transportation — whichever tallies up to a higher sum — but can easily soar into the millions. In fact, in April the Department of Justice slapped an Alsakan company a whopping $10 million fine for using a Chinese ship to transport gear from the Gulf of Mexico to Alaska — the fee is the largest in history of the Jones Act.

It is possible to get a waiver, but only in extreme circumstances where it is considered necessary in the interest of national defense. For the Exxon Valdez spill in 1989, for instance, waivers were granted for foreign-flag oil skimming barges to help clean the mess until U.S. vessels could replace the ships.

But Shivdler can — and probably has — take his speedboat out for a spin and set foot in the city for a tamer $300 fee.

Le Grand Bleu was given to Shivdler in 2006 by his business partner and fellow billionaire Roman Abramovich who is pal to Russian President Valdamir Putin. The vessel comes complete with a 65-person crew, helicopter, aquarium, and speedboat.

It’s unclear how long Shivdler plans to anchor in the bay and what business has brought him to New York, and we could not reach him for comment or even to get a free tour of the yacht.

Reach reporter Caroline Spivack at cspivack@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2523. Follow her on Twitter @carolinespivack.

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Time to relax in the Ridge

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By Caroline Spivack

Brooklyn Daily

Bay Ridge is gearing up to stay put!

Memorial Day weekend is here, and we suggest spending your extra-long break from work on a leisurely staycation right here in Brooklyn’s best neighborhood, where there are plenty of sights and new spots to visit.

Kick off your weekend with a relaxing stroll along Fifth Avenue for the Storefront Art Walk (Fifth Avenue between 68th and 83rd streets), featuring the work of 15 painters, photographers, craftsmen, and others artists, who have spruced up the window fronts of stores along the commercial corridor. Among the installations you’ll find comic book-inspired sketches, razor wire sculptures, and whimsical window murals.

After you’ve sated your appetite for culture, tour a few new-to-the-nabe joints and satisfy your hunger for good grub. Third Avenue has a collection of new spots that offer something for everyone in your crew.

Stroll over the Georgian Dream Cafe (8309 Third Ave. between 83rd and 84th streets) for a cozy space with Eastern European comfort food including khinkali, known as Georgian dumplings, and a bubbling cheese bread topped with runny egg called acharuli khachapuri that is perfect for sharing. Or sink your teeth into some souvlaki at the Blue Door Souvlakia (8413 Third Ave. between 85th and 84th), which has an atmosphere that will make you think you’re kicking back on the Greek island of Santorini. Then satisfy your post-meal sweet tooth with a smoothie or fruit bowl at the funky health food joint Baya Bowls (9417 Third Ave. between 94th and 95th), which serves cleverly named treats like the “Acai-U-Later” smoothie, the “Bella Nutella” shake, and — our personal favorite — the “Kale Mary.”

Finally, cap your weekend with a cruise on one of the city’s new ferries for a nautical view of your favorite nabe. Venture just north of Bay Ridge to Sunset Park’s Brooklyn Army Terminal (80 58th St. at First Avenue), where a mere $2.75 will score you a 45-minute spin to the Rockaways, complete with a cruise parallel to the Ridge and up close and personal view of the Verrazano–Narrows Bridge.

Reach reporter Caroline Spivack at cspivack@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2523. Follow her on Twitter @carolinespivack.

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Light showers: Park gets lit with Umbrella Project dance

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By Julianne Cuba

Brooklyn Daily

Go dancing with the stars!

A sea of strangers will come together to light up Brooklyn Bridge Park with images of exploding stars and solar eclipses on June 3, as part of the World Science Festival. For the “Umbrella Project,” the dance group Pilobolus will distribute several hundred brightly-lit umbrellas and encourage people into cosmic formations, creating colorful images filmed from above and projected onto a giant screen. The crowd and the music will come together for a beautiful dance under the stars, said the group’s executive producer.

“They feel out the images together and it becomes this kind of wonderful, soothing, imaginative rave as you’re moving around in the music and looking up at these images,” said Itamar Kubovy.

The World Science Festival event will begin with star-gazing and an appearance by Bill Nye the Science Guy at 7 pm, followed by the “Umbrella Project.” Pilobolus has experimented with a wide range of patterns for the project before, but for this night it will focus on images of the sky, said Kubovy.

“Let’s try to makes shapes and images of things related to astronomy and science,” he said.

The umbrellas have three buttons that will light them up in red, yellow, and blue — or any combination of those colors. After a short video explaining how the umbrellas work, people usually start by creating small, simple patterns, and then grow into more elaborate designs, said Kubovy.

“They just start walking around looking up at the screen. They start to understand what is the relationship between their button pushing and moving around,” he said. “I think once we start to create a pattern — geometric lines, circles with concentric bands and rings around them — then try to create a shape that is referencing an object.”

It’s amazing to see how a crowd works together to turn a sea of of glowing umbrellas into recognizable shapes, said Kubovy.

“Getting people to build something together in great numbers, 200 people, making a beautiful image — a moon, astronomical concepts or images, eclipses — effectively reflecting the lights back to the stars, with some kind of empathy as a group of people.”

The project will prevail in clear skies or in rain — after all, everyone will already have a shield from the raindrops, said Kubovy.

“You have an umbrella, if it rains,” he said. “It’s amazing, it even becomes more intimate, everyone’s under a tent, their own little tent.”

Those who want to see more of Pilobolus can see five of the company’s newest collaborations on July 6 in Prospect Park, when the group performs for the Bric Celebrate Brooklyn Festival.

“The Umbrella Project” at Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 1 (enter at Furman Street and Old Fulton Street in Dumbo, www.brooklynbridgepark.org). June 3 at 8:30 pm. Free.

Reach reporter Julianne Cuba at (718) 260–4577 or by e-mail at jcuba@cnglocal.com. Follow her on Twitter @julcuba.

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Sacrifices remembered: Bay Ridgites honor the fallen at Fort Hamilton

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By Caroline Spivack

Brooklyn Daily

It was the wreath they could do.

Service members at Fort Hamilton held a wreath-laying ceremony in honor of those in law enforcement who were killed or disabled in the line of duty. The rite was held during National Police Week to commemorate the profound sacrifice service members give to protect their communities, said the director of the emergency services department at Fort Hamilton.

“It was important for the Fort Hamilton Department of Emergency Services to have a memorial ceremony to recognize those who paid the ultimate sacrifice and to show a sign of solidarity with federal, state, and other law enforcement services,” said Michael Canter, the lead organizer behind the event.

Family members and colleagues came out to show their gratitude to three men in particular who died on the job: Deon Taylor, James McNaughton, and Joseph Lemm.

A trio of photographs of the men were placed near the lush wreath.

Fort Hamilton pulled out all the stops for the event with “Taps” on the horn, a line of speakers who offered personal and professional testimonies, and a bittersweet cake that celebrated local and federal law enforcement.

Reach reporter Caroline Spivack at cspivack@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2523. Follow her on Twitter @carolinespivack.

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Stepping up: Poly junior lift Blue Devils to semi win

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By Laura Amato

Brooklyn Daily

He just kept throwing.

Poly Prep junior pitcher Ethan Ehrenberg didn’t worry about how tired he was, or if anyone got on base, he simply kept throwing, and lifted the Blue Devils to a 3–0 victory over Riverdale in the Ivy League semis on Tuesday. He tossed a complete game, striking out four, walking three and giving up just three hits.

“It felt great,” Ehrenberg said. “The important thing was just to get to the championship game for our seniors. They all want it and we want it for them. We’re just really happy to come out here and get this win.”

Ehrenberg was dominant on the mound, but he almost didn’t get the chance to pitch. Poly was originally slated to play on Monday, and planned to pitch senior ace Oliver McCarthy, but a rainout that day led to a change of plans. Suddenly, the Blue Devils were forced to start Ehrenberg, but Poly Prep coach Matt Roventini insisted the team’s mindset stayed the same.

“We knew with Ethan on the mound, we’d still be exceptionally confident,” Roventini said. “It didn’t concern us that we didn’t have Oli to start. We had Ethan and he’s done exactly what he’s done all year, which is pound the strike zone and give us a chance. You can tell he wasn’t fazed by the moment at all.”

Ehrenberg kept Riverdale on its heels for most of the postseason tilt, but got into a jam in the top of the fifth, putting two runners on with no outs. He didn’t panic, though, just kept throwing strikes until a 1-6-3 double play got the Blue Devils out of the inning.

“[Bryan Padilla is] a great shortstop, so I knew all I had to do was get it, just throw it over the bag and he’d make the play,” Ehrenberg said. “That was a huge moment for us.”

The play was enough to take some of the wind out of Riverdale’s sails, and jumpstart a late Poly rally at the plate. The Blue Devils padded their lead in the bottom of the frame, adding two runs, and effectively seizing the game’s momentum.

“I think that moment changed the dynamic of the game,” Roventini said. “All the sudden a little more energy, a little more pep in our step and our bats come alive. Once we got the three [runs], we felt pretty comfortable.” Poly got production from its entire lineup, but the bottom of order grabbed a bit more of the spotlight, with the seventh, eighth and ninth hitters scoring all three runs.

“The majority of the pitches were early fastballs and I think that’s what led to the success,” said senior second baseman Nic Mulitz, who went 2-for-3 and stole three bases. “They weren’t going to blow by us, so we knew that swinging early, getting up on that fastball early in the count was vital to us getting on base.”

Seven out of nine Poly hitters reached base in the victory and the Blue Devils out-hit Riverdale eight to three. It’s another solid showing for a squad that now is looking to clinch yet another state championship. Winning is a tradition at Poly, but the Blue Devils aren’t getting too far ahead of themselves. Much like Ehrenberg, they’re just going to go out there and do their jobs.

“We’re used to being in this spot,” Mulitz said. “We know we need to come out on top and that’s what we’ve been doing recently. It’s not that different for us.”

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Back again: Poly softball rolls to another championship berth

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Photo by Sean Murphy

Brooklyn Daily

The outcome was never really in doubt.

The Poly Prep softball team cruised to a 7–1 victory over Horace Mann in the Ivy League semifinals on May 23, securing yet another championship berth for the squad.

“Overall, our team performance was really great,” said Blue Devils senior centerfielder Morgan O’Mara. “We came out here ready to win. This whole season we’ve been really working towards a championship so we couldn’t be more excited to be there now.”

Poly Prep jumped out to a 3–0 lead in the bottom of the second inning. They padded their lead with one more in the fourth, but Horace Mann managed to get on the board in the top of the fifth inning, making it a three-run game. That was, however, all the Lions would be able to muster.

The Blue Devils added another run in the bottom of the frame and then two more in the next to effectively wrap up the game and steal away any momentum from Horace Mann.

The game was all about senior Ava O’Mara. She was both the starting pitcher and the lead-off hitter for Poly Prep and she was nothing short of dominant in both roles.

O’Mara silenced the Lions’ batters with a complete game, allowing only three hits and just one run, striking out four, and walking only two. She says she expects nothing less of herself whenever she takes the mound.

“My job is just to focus on the batter, pitch my game, hit my corners, hit my spots,” O’Mara said. “Horace Mann is a good hitting team. They’ve hit before when we faced them two other times so it’s really about working ahead in the count, and those first pitch strikes are important.”

O’Mara also hit her stride at the plate. In four at-bats, she stroked two hits, stole three bases, scored three runs, and was able to get on base in every single at-bat. Offensively, she wasn’t alone, getting support from first baseman Nova Stoller, catcher Jane Malafronte, third baseman Chase Behar, and twin sister Morgan as Poly came out swinging from the beginning.

Despite her team’s strong performance against Horace Mann, head coach Mildred Piscopo hopes the team can do better when they face off against Fieldston in the state championship game.

“We didn’t swing the bats as well as I know that we can so I’m hoping we that we can pick it up for tomorrow,” Piscopo said. “We just have to relax when we get up to bat and just try to have some fun and not try to press and do too much.”

The title tilt will mark the third championship match-up between Fieldston and Poly Prep, so Ava O’Mara suspects that relaxation might be a little tough for some of these Blue Devils. Still, she says, the team has high hopes, and after taking down Fieldston last year, Poly is hoping for a repeat performance this spring.

“There’s a lot of nerves and you gotta find a way to cope with those nerves and play our game,” Ava said. “Every coach in the league has said we’re the better team so it’s just about playing like it.”

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Max & Murphy: Is a Healthy Discussion of NYCs Transit Crisis Finally on Track?

mikenova shared this story from Brooklyn Local News.

City Hall You must be this tall to ride this ride. You could feel it building for months. Long delays

LGBTQ Group Holds Dance Party At DiPietros Office

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From the Morning Memo: Western New York Assemblyman David DiPietro got the Pence treatment Thursday evening from a group of

In tour of the Bronx, de Blasios biggest challenger is himself

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None

Man dies after being shot 7 times in Brooklyn

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Police on the scene on Moore St. near Humbolt St. in Brooklyn where a man was shot seven times – he later died at the hospital. A 29-year-old man has died after being shot seven times during a clash in Brooklyn, officials said Wednesday.


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