Letters to the editor, Feb. 20

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Plight of the working middle class is ignored

To the editor:

With reference to the letter to the editors, by “Name Withheld” regarding the DHCR response on MCI orders and the letter from the elected officials (T&V, Feb. 13): I entirely agree with the comments of the writer.

It should be obvious to everyone that, except for very rare exceptions, these politicians are just another set of scammers who come with all sorts of high flying promises and offers to work towards improving the quality of life of the voters; but after they are elected, these promises and offers are conveniently shelved and forgotten, as they get on the bandwagon and work towards ensuring their survival and patronage by the political establishment.

For example, during the last election, the promises made by Messrs. Garodnick and Kavanagh: to work towards eliminating the MCI law that forces tenants to pay for major capital improvements, which raise the value of buildings for landlords, and thus increase their wealth.

New York is the only city that allows landlords to pass the cost of repairs and renovations onto the tenants. Capital improvements, as I mentioned above, increase the landlords’ wealth; they do not increase, or provide very little increase, in the rental value received by the tenants. Tenants do not share in the profit increases, or wealth gains, enjoyed by the landlords from capital improvements.

Thus, our elected officials should be doing their best and trying hard to work towards eliminating this law that benefits landlords but penalizes tenants, who are already under major economic stress in trying to exist with limited means in this city.

My fervent suggestion to all tenants reading this letter is to write and communicate with our new mayor, Mr. De Blasio, and the new City Council — both of whom appear to be more in tune with the plight of the working middle class than their predecessors.

It is imperative that we make our voices heard and that we provide the mayor with evidence so that he knows the majority of New York citizens are desperate for relief and support in trying to live decently in this city we all love.

Al Salame, ST

Can Mayor de Blasio save the middle class?

I suspect that residents of these two communities are by far most interested in how the new mayor will affect our evolving situation in ST/PCV. Bloomberg did make New York the “shining city on the hill.” And as a billionaire many times over, he did not have to succumb to the pressures of campaign financing and be beholden to them. His wealth made him immune to political pressures.

But as a result of his great wealth he paid little attention to the rising rents and condo and co-op prices. In other words, he did little to help the middle class vis-a-vis affordable housing. Bill de Blasio is an honest man with concern for the middle, lower and under classes. But his problem is that although he is the mayor, he has to answer to the “powerful” who have far more clout than most elected politicians.

Note that Obama has been president with one hand tied behind his back via special interests: the lobbyists who call the shots for the nation’s “one percent” as The Heritage Foundation and David Koch use the Republican Party (and some Democrats) to get their wishes. They have tied the President’s hands behind his back and then blame him for getting little accomplished.

De Blasio must figure out a way to save the middle class — but he must first come up with a viable strategy to hold off the super-greedy. If he is successful, that will help us all in ST/PCV.

David Chowes, PCV

Farewell, Pete Seeger

Dear T&V,

Pete Seeger died on January 27 and it seems like an entire era passed away with him. He was 99 years old and was chopping wood 10 days before he died.

I’ve been wishing to see him just one more time in the past decade. He had a big heart and like Martin Luther King, JFK and Nelson Mandela we will never see this life again! The world was a better place while he was in it. I was playing guitar on the day he died and I spontaneously played “The Hammer Song” (which he wrote) without knowing of his passing. Goodbye, old friend. You will be missed.


Richard Luksin,
Minneapolis, MN

5 thoughts on “Letters to the editor, Feb. 20

  1. We have a letter from someone in Minneapolis writing about Peter Seeger. What the hell does this have to do with Stuyvesant Town/Peter Cooper Village and the issues we have here? Is T&V that desperate to fill the “Letters” space? The letter concerning the DHCR and our corrupt and self-serving politicians was much more pertinent to this community.

    • God Bless him and he was lucky he didn’t live here or he may not have reached that age given that we are being driven to early graves by our landlord and all the MCIs.

  2. You’re right, Pete didn’t live here, he lived in Beacon, New York, in a log cabin that he and his late wife Toshi built with their bare hands. You see, Pete believed in self determination and also in the power to bring change by the collective, something that the tenants of Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper have yet to master. Perhaps you should pay attention to the ideas that Pete and others bring to this world in their quest to make it a better place.

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