Bogus University? Meh. Trump's Done Worse

Categories: "Politics"

"Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore 2" by Gage Skidmore - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.
This week, a judge found Donald Trump liable for operating a get-rich-quick school, the erstwhile Trump University, without a license. The case was originally brought against Trump by New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman's office, which, according to the Daily News, alleged that Trump University had "ripped off 5,000 students nationwide by promising to make them rich when instead they were steered into costly and mostly useless seminars."

While he's already been held liable for the university's operation, Trump will now go to trial to see if he's also liable for defrauding the students.

But history has shown you can't keep The Donald down. After all, this is a man who has recovered from self-inflicted injury again and again:

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Democratic Candidate Zephyr Teachout Calls Cuomo's Residency Challenge To Her Campaign "Baseless"

Photo by Anna Merlan
Teachout, in blue, with supporters at a rally before her court appearance.
There's still some debate about how long one must live here before they're considered a true New Yorker: Ten years? Twenty? But for the purposes of running for governor of the state, it's clear: You have to have lived here for five years. It's on those grounds that Governor Andrew Cuomo's campaign is mounting a legal challenge to try and knock his Democratic challenger, Zephyr Teachout, off the ballot. In Brooklyn State Supreme Court this morning, at the start of a trial expected to last several days, Cuomo's lawyers got Teachout to admit she'd used her parents' address in Vermont as her permanent address on her tax filings for the entire time she's lived in New York.

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De Blasio Stops By The Colbert Report, Is a Little Boring

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio on The Colbert Report

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio went seeking the "Colbert Bump" last night in what turned out to be a relatively brief, bland interview.

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The Seven Worst Elected Officials in the Tri-State Region, 2014 Edition

Categories: "Politics"

Illustration by Alvaro Diaz-Rubio.
This week the Voice took part in a national project with 50 other alternative press journalists that named the country's worst elected officials. The list named 53 politicians from 23 states -- including the District of Columbia -- who fit into one of five categories: hatemongers, sleazeballs, blowhards, users and boozers, and horn dogs. It was a fun project that introduced us to a number of shady public leaders about whom we may not otherwise have known.

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State Senator Calls de Blasio's IDs for Undocumented Immigrants A "Terrorist Empowerment Act"

Image via.
State Senator Greg Ball, male, center, at a senior citizen's luncheon just after he issued the "terrorist" press release.
Earlier this week, new mayor Bill de Blasio's State of the City address set some pretty ambitious policy goals: he promised to set a new minimum wage in the city, presumably higher than New York state's, talked a lot about social inequality, and, most attention-gettingly, he promised to make municipal identification cards available to everyone , even undocumented immigrants.

"To all of my fellow New Yorkers who are undocumented, I say: New York City is your home, too," de Blasio said, announcing the plan, "and we will not force any of our residents to live their lives in the shadows."

It remains to be seen if or when de Blasio will actually implement the municipal ID plan, which would make it possible for undocumented people to do things like rent apartments and get library cards. We were surprised, though, to see that no political trolls immediately leapt out of the woodwork to criticize the plan, perhaps by making some hyperventilating, grandiose statement about terrorism and generous use of the word "illegals."

But now, after two long days, our wait is over. May we introduce State Senator Greg Ball?

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Assembly Decides Micah Kellner Can't Have Interns Anymore, For Obvious Reasons

Image via.
Kellner, in more dignified times.
It's never been quite clear why the New York State Assembly's legal team didn't start investigating Assembyman Micah Kellner in 2009, when he was first accused of sexually harassing a female employee. It took until this summer, when the New York Times revealed that Kellner, a Democrat from the Upper East Side, had made inappropriate remarks to his female subordinate during online games of Words with Friends, including "I like being the only man in your life" (after pressing to find out if she had a boyfriend) and ""I wouldn't mind falling asleep with you but not remotely. Did I offend?"

The woman reported the harassment to her supervisor, who in turn handed over 15 pages of chat transcripts to Bill Collins, who headed up the Assembly's legal staff. And there the matter rested, until yesterday.

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Bloomberg's Favorite Developer Slated to Get Another Huge Hudson Yards Tax Break--Taxpayers Pay the Penalty

Hudson Yards Plan
The Bloomberg administration is preparing to hand another $328 million in tax breaks to its favored developer, The Related Companies, for ... get this ... a fancy shopping mall and a high-end office skyscraper in the Hudson Yards project on the west side of Manhattan. [A early mockup of the finished site is at right.]

The board of the city's Industrial Development Agency, an off-shoot of the Economic Development Corp., is slated to hold a public hearing on the whopping proposed tax breaks on Oct. 10.

James Parrott, deputy director and chief economist of the Fiscal Policy Institute sharply criticized the giveaway. "It is the height of fiscal irresponsibility for the NYC IDA to provide massive taxpayer subsidies to a Manhattan luxury mall," he tells the Voice.

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Government Twitter Accounts Are Among the First Casualties of the Shutdown

The government officially shut down at midnight, which means that, for the time being, only essential government services will be in operation.

High on the list of government services deemed "nonessential" is the management of federal Twitter accounts.

Along with the national parks, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Library of Congress--all of which have effectively closed for business--Twitter accounts for NOAA Hurricane Hunters, NASA Voyager 2, and the U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife (among many, many others) are going dark during the shutdown.

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Bloomberg: Looming Government Shutdown an Embarrassment

While everyone in Washington is running around with their hair on fire over the looming government shutdown, New Yorkers might want to worry about it a little themselves.

So suggested Mayor Bloomberg Monday, saying a shutdown would make the U.S. look like a third-world country, and adding that could eventually cause problems in the operations of city agencies. "At the beginning, it really doesn't hurt us," he said. "It is as you go into the process and people stop getting checks and services slowly get wound down--yes, if it lasted a long time."

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Upper West Side Woman Thinks Manhattan's Too Good for Stop-and-Frisk

Watching interactive talk shows is like playing Russian roulette. There's no telling who is going to call in and say something bananas on live television. (You also never know if Cher might have a thing or two to say about the state of affairs in Washington, but I digress.) NY1's The Call got the loaded chamber on Tuesday when show host John Schiumo fielded a call from a woman known only as "Joan." Claiming to be from the Upper West Side, Joan excoriated stop and frisk, but she would rather keep the program going in the outer boroughs, because Manhattan is "special". What?

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