"In the late 1960s, more than half [53%] of the households in the United States were squarely in the middle, earning, in today's dollars, $35,000 to $100,000 a year... But since 2000, the middle-class share of households has continued to narrow [to 43%], the main reason being that more people have fallen to the bottom."
Does the NYPD have an undercover ice cream truck to go with its secret spy taxi cab? The Mister Softee-lookalike above was spotted double-parked in front of the department's 114th precinct in Astoria, Queens, with an NYPD baseball cap on its dashboard and all of its Softee branding conspicuously removed.
Qualcomm, a public company, revealed this week that it gave $95 million in stock grants to two top executives last year just to prevent them from leaving—including $45 million to former CEO Paul Jacobs, "the son of co-founder and former chairman Irwin Jacobs." This is how the corporate meritocracy works.
Budnarine Behari, a Rikers Island captain who oversaw the April 2012 hogtying and beating of a mentally ill inmate who had complained about not receiving a baloney sandwich, was fired this week along with five other officers at the prison. Great. But before he was dismissed, Behari had the opportunity to administer equally sadistic attacks on at least two other prisoners. What the hell took so long?
Djamel Ameziane was imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay from 2002 to 2013. Like the rest of the detainees there, he was never charged with a crime or given a trial, and according to the Center for Constitutional Rights, his time at Gitmo included "torture, abuse, and other human rights violations." Above is a bucolic seaside scene Ameziane painted in watercolors three years before his release.
Martin Horn, the former City Department of Correction Commissioner, knows how we can fix Rikers. "Jails should be close to the communities they serve and the courthouses where prisoners' cases are heard," he says. "It requires political courage for the city to address these issues." Courage and, uh, tax dollars.
Over the weekend, the New York Review of Books published a long essay by Michael Greenberg about the standing hostility between mayor Bill de Blasio and the New York City Police Department. While writing the piece, Greenberg found himself at a bar in Glendale, Queens, where several N.Y.P.D. cops had gathered after the funeral of slain Officer Rafael Ramos. What did they talk about? Bill de Blasio “sucking the cock of every protester” of police brutality—and a lot more:
A new report released on Friday by the Southern Education Foundation revealed that 51 percent of America's public school children qualified for free lunch at their schools in 2013, up from 38 percent in 2000. While this data does not necessarily mean that all of those students come from low-income families, the uptick over the years is meaningful.
Civil asset forfeiture—the process by which police can legally take your house from you because your son bought $40 worth of drugs, or steal your car or your money without charging you with a crime—was dealt a serious blow today after U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced that state and local police departments would be all but barred from seizing assets under a particular draconian federal law.
Amidst the NYPD's kerfuffle with City Hall, the allegations against a group of Brooklyn cops who may have planted guns on innocent people have gotten a little lost. The New York Times thoroughly reported on several cases in December, and today, Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson announced his office will launch an investigation.
According to a complaint filed yesterday with the New York City Department of Buildings, an eight-foot-long section of pipe fell from a hoist car on the 81st floor of 432 Park Avenue, crashing to the ground in front of an occupied building across the street. The under-construction tower—the tallest residential building in the Western hemisphere—is now under a full stop work order from the DOB, Curbed notes.