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October 30, 2007

The due diligence of BP candidate Bill de Blasio, or the (AY) end justifies the means

DeBlasioAY.jpg Atlantic Yards Report

In advance of yesterday's announcement that City Councilman Bill de Blasio was officially running for Brooklyn Borough President, he held two rap sessions with local bloggers.

Norman Oder attended the second session to learn more about de Blasio's opinions about the "essential truth" (the Councilmember's words) of Atlantic Yards. What Oder discovered was that de Blasio not only nearly contradicted his own position on Atlantic Yards, but, when it came to other neighborhoods and projects, the Councilmember articulated many of the same arguments that critics have leveled against Atlantic Yards. Further, de Blasio was fairly ignorant of the facts regarding the "essential value" (the Councilmember's words) of many of the project's attributes.

Needless to say, the article is "essential reading" (our words).

Indeed, when it comes to Atlantic Yards, de Blasio remains ill-informed, relying on the progressive allies he trusts to vouch for the project as a whole, but failing to keep up with crucial changes in the project or to take a close look at some controversial aspects.

He’s willing to offer peripheral criticism but not to challenge the project’s fundamentals, given his belief in the “essential truth” of the project.

Probably a closer look at many public officials would turn up similar contradictions. And the press—well, most of the mainstream press—has done too little to point out the flaws in the Atlantic Yards Community Benefits Agreement, the decline in promised jobs and tax revenue, and the real contours of the affordable housing deal.

Posted by lumi at October 30, 2007 7:16 AM