2005-01-14 / Community

Beachcomber

Congressman Anthony Weiner seems to be challenging both the Republicans and Mayor Michael Bloomberg who, in name at least, is a Republican. Besides continually tying Bloomberg to President George Bush, he has hit several times on the mayor’s ties with the Independence Party and its anti-Semitic leader. Now, he is one of a small group of very Liberal Congressmen who formally protested President Bush’s election – at least according to the New York Post, who hates Weiner as much as it loves Bloomberg. According to the Post, the Congressmen sent a letter to Vice President Dick Chaney (the President of the Senate) saying that they had “grave doubts that whether the President really won the election.” We wonder why Weiner, who is not all that Liberal, would get involved in such an action. Perhaps it’s part of his plan to win the 2005 mayoral election by discrediting Bloomberg through Bush.

This sounds like a skit from “Saturday Night Live,” but Vice President Chaney has selected “Let The Eagles Soar,” a song written by former Attorney General John Ashcroft to be sung at his inaugural ceremony. The song includes the lyrics, “ Let the eagle soar, like she’s never soared before. From rocky coast to golden shore, let the mighty eagle soar.” The song will be song by Guy Hovis, who last sang in public on the “Lawrence Welk Show,” which ended in the 1950’s.

The Parents Association of PS 114 will hold a tennis fundraiser at the Mill Basin Racquet Club in Brooklyn on Friday, February 11. The round-robin doubles event includes food and beverages and is open to players of all ages and all abilities. Those interested in participating or in further information may call 718-945-3950.

Governor George Pataki mentioned Rockaway in his recent “State of the State Message.” Unfortunately, it was not to announce some fantastic grant or program. Talking about disasters that hit the state in the past and the state’s fantastic response to those emergencies, Pataki said, “And it hasn’t been limited to weather emergencies – there was also the blackout of 2003, the TWA 800 disaster and the crash of flight 587 in the Rockaways. The bold, sweeping changes we made to our state’s emergency response capabilities enable our state to rise to the challenge time after time.” We guess that any mention is better than none at all, but, short of the quick visit by the Governor to the Sunset Diner (he dropped in by helicopter), we really can’t think of any state response that made a difference.

There are now three ocean swims in the west end of rockaway on New Year’s Day. An early (10 a.m.) dip takes place at Beach 126 Street, with about 25 people involved. At noon, there are two separate swims – one at Beach 119 Street (about 75 people) and the other at Beach 146 Street ( With more than 100 participants). We have talked with the organizers of the three swims and there seems to be little impetus to get together and have one large event. All we can say is, “only in Rockaway.”

There is still limited seating available for “The Super Bowl Murders,” a hands-on participation murder mystery that will be held at the Beach Club on January 28 at 8 p.m. The new Killing Kompany murder mystery-dinner show mixes professional actors and local residents to make an enjoyable evening.

Officials from North Fork Bank have been meeting with locals on the east end to come up with a compromise to the closing of the GreenPoint Bank (a bank that North Fork just purchased) on Seagirt Boulevard. That bank was home to many depositors who are either elderly or infirm and can’t travel to the new North Fork Bank branch on Mott Avenue, more than a mile away from the old facility. We have heard that a North Fork Bank vice president recently came to Rockaway in order to resolve the problem.

Local pharmacies are being impacted by the ruling of many health plans that those who purchase long-term medication must do so through mail order facilities – many of which are owned by the health plans or which deep discounts that amount to kick-backs from those mail order companies. The health plans associated with New York City employees have been doing this for a number of years, and other health plans began using the mail-order program on January 1. While this is great for the health plan, it will most likely eventually put a lot of mom and pop drug stores out of business.

Speaking of health care (and who isn’t these days), Mayor Michael Bloomberg raised lots of eyebrows last week when talking of the city’s hospital system, the mayor said that the hospital system was one of the few places in the country “where the poor get better services than the wealthy.” When many complained that the mayor was out of touch with reality on that subject, he spun his words by arguing that he was simply talking about the accreditation process.

Everybody who lives in New York City knows that the murder rate has dropped precipitously over the past several years. Everybody, it seems, except for Newsday, who recently had a headline trumpeting New York as the murder capitol of the world. While there are several cities who have more murders than New York, the paper took the statistics and reworked them as per capita numbers. Since we have more people than anybody else, the paper thinks, the numbers make us the murder capitol. That is just another example of the paper’s bias against the NYPD and everybody else who works for the city.

Another example of what professional sports has become is the case of John Abraham, the steller pass rusher for the New York Jets, who sprained his knee a few weeks ago and still remains on the bench even though his teammates are presently in the playoffs. Abraham remains on the sidelines not because he is still too hurt to play, but becausehe becomes free agent at the end of the season and does not want to hurt his chances for a rich deal with another team.

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