For Sale: State Senator

(People are going to say that by what writing what you’re about to read that I am once again throwing my hat into the political ring. Let me state upfront and definitively that I am not now nor will I be a candidate for any office in 2010. With that disclaimer in mind, let’s get into it.)

Brooklyn is suffering from a political infirmity named Carl Kruger.

The man is a local embarrassment and a blight in the State Senate, which is saying a lot considering the state of the Senate.

Local papers and blogs have recently picked up on Mr. Kruger’s most recent behavior in the setting of the state’s fiscal crisis - and Mr. Kruger's uncanny tendency to vote in favor of the position of his hefty political donors. I encourage you to read Ned Berke’s summary of recent events on Sheepshead Bites. I won’t re-hash what Ned so ably covered, so go check it out!

Here is one nugget that Ned missed from the Village Voice:
Proof that Kruger operates on a different planet from the rest of us came in March when the Voice tried to ridicule him as the would-be Hugo Chavez of south Brooklyn. The article described hordes of cheering constituents shouting, "All the way with Chairman K!"

This effort at mockery failed miserably. Kruger had an aide call up and ask for permission to reprint the article, "Vanguard of the Senate Revolution."

We weren't sure we heard him right. "He wants to reprint it?" we asked.

"Yes, he's very proud of it," the aide insisted.

This proved conclusively that satire is always dangerous when dealing with the deranged. "Go ahead," we told him. "Knock yourself out."
Singular point of view notwithstanding, those who have seen him in action know that what has recently reached the mainstream media is par for the course for our Senator. Whether it’s accepting over $100,000 from developers with projects in Sheepshead Bay that virtually destroyed our waterfront during the building boom (check the archives of “Friends of Carl” from 2004 and 2005 – he was the developer’s best friend, as exhibited by this flyer that was circulated during the Sheepshead Bay re-zoning), his hypocrisy in crusading to “preserve” said waterfront he gladly took money to destroy in confronting Cherry Hill Market, we know locally Mr. Kruger hasn’t met a dollar he didn’t like.

Clearly, Mr. Kruger cares only about Mr. Kruger. According to many conversations I’ve had over the years, he indiscriminately screws over friend and foe alike if it suits him. And in doing so, he takes no position of his own – let alone represents his constituency’s position - and gladly accepts money from anyone and everyone, no matter the cause or position.

In many respects, Mr. Kruger imposes personality over progress. Being part of a decision isn’t enough - he must have the spotlight. And more often than not, matters are left worse off as a result of his participation. He is the proverbial sound and fury that ultimately signifies nothing. In political parlance, he’s a “wind bag”.

In my humble opinion, Mr. Kruger is an embarrassment to our community, but at the same time, I believe that we really have no one to blame but ourselves for sending this blight back to Albany election after election. We enabled him. We are his accomplices silently letting him run roughshod over NY State and our community.

The enabling must stop for our sake, and the sake of the State. It’s time to put an end to Mr. Kruger’s term of service.

It’s our responsibility to make things right by removing Mr. Kruger from office. I don’t care if you’re Republican , Democrat, Independent, Martian, whatever – I think we all recognize that Mr. Kruger’s brand of politics is counter-productive. We can no longer stand idly by and allow this man to continue in his selfish and destructive manner of governing.

I only hope that someone steps up to this battle – I know I will stand behind that person.

Is That A Challenge? Damn Right It Is!

If you came looking for a post-mortem of my City Council campaign, then you'll go wanting. The time for reflection is over - I'll gladly discuss the intricacies of the campaign with those who wish to really delve into the details one-on-one.

So for now, I take a cue from the campaign: Move Forward. Never Look Back.

And it's of "moving forward" that I wish to talk about today. I'll keep this short.

Today, the Kings County Republican Committee took up the cause of some young HS students who wished to speak out against "Obama-Care". but their school wouldn't allow them under their own name for fear of losing their non-profit status. Their parents even went as far as to say that they couldn't use their own last names for fear of reprisal. The rally, held in Bay Ridge, was well attended given the timeliness of notice and organizing effort of both students and others. By all accounts, the crowd in attendance - many of whom were faces I hadn't seen at other events - left with a positive view of the effort, and were roused by some great speeches, especially from one student organizer.

Then I come home and go online, and find whining and complaining and ridiculous conspiracy theories about this event, probably by those who either didn't attend or who still choose to put hubris ahead of working for progress. I won't even dignify the comments with a link.

So for me, it's "line in the sand" time.

For nearly a month now within the Kings County Republican Party, I've seen nothing but idle prattle from all sides, but especially from those who feel "reform" amounts to anonymous personal attacks mixed in with continuous bitching and sentiments of entitlement. While I understand the need to vent frustration for perceived wrongdoing, the time has come and passed.

Now is the time for new ideas, new points of view and to put aside hubris and paranoia. It's time to work.

So to all, I issue this challenge: You have an idea? You think you can fix things? You know better?

Bring it.

I want to hear it all. Let's get past the pettiness and let's get constructive. Use the comments section and brainstorm for all to see. And I don't mean comments like "We need _____." - if you're pointing out a problem, offer a solution. Show that you have something valuable to offer in word, if not in deed.

I promise that I won't hold back in praise or critique - and personality will not come before substance. The only condition I have is that you use your real name as a sign that you have the courage of your convictions and will be accountable.

Anyone can complain. Let's get real.