By Fred W. Thiele Jr. Income inequality is the most serious economic and social issue facing our state and nation. As the gap between the super-wealthy and the rest of us continues to grow, the middle class, which has been the cornerstone of the American Dream, languishes. The COVID-19 pandemic, with the economic destruction it has reaped, has further exposed these economic disparities. Wall Street prospers while Main Street struggles. The effect on New York State has been devastating: We face a $15 billion budget gap this year alone that will grow to more than $63 billion over the next ... by Fred W. Thiele Jr.
By Ellen Meyers Getting a vaccine appointment has been compared to getting a ticket for a hot concert. And last night, several days after Friday’s debacle, I actually dreamed that I was at a hot concert. While seated up front and really close to Bruce Springsteen, my mind wandered to: Would I rather have gotten a COVID-19 vaccine appointment or be at this amazing concert? No question in my mind at all. As someone who has managed throughout the years to nab those tickets, how did I find myself more and more in a minority of friends and family who ... by Ellen Meyers
By Shari Adler Many survivors and veterans of war, or similar conditions, resist the comparison of living through a pandemic to living through any era of massive military deployment. The comparison of annihilating people to eradicating a virus is hard to make, since quarantining from a virus feels benign when juxtaposed to resisting artillery-armed humans. Yet, both situations present unspeakable grief. On Monday night, February 22, President Joe Biden noted the 500,071 dead: “That’s more Americans who have died in one year in this pandemic than in World War I, World War II and the Vietnam War — combined.” It ... by By Shari Adler
The “G” in PSEG could stand for “Goofy.” PSEG this month faces the loss of the 12-year contract it inked in 2013 to operate Long Island’s electric grid for the Long Island Power Authority. This stems from its massive failures during Tropical Storm Isaias in August 2020, when more than 500,000 of LIPA’s 1.1 million customers lost power, many for days, and communications with PSEG Long Island to report outages and find out what was happening were impossible. As Governor Andrew Cuomo, who was central in getting PSEG to replace National Grid as LIPA’s private contractor after National Grid’s major ... by Karl Grossman
The beach is a favorite refuge for many. It is a public park just inches from some of the most valuable real estate per square in America, and anyone — young, old, rich or poor — can take a walk or get a suntan here. The beach is seldom the same twice; the ocean crashes one day this way, and then, the next, nearly calm with glass-like sets. Waves that gently curl with a closeout wallop. With all this action, shifts, great and subtle movements, never stop. The beach is a great place even for those with short attention spans. ... by Marilee Foster
Is your historical glass feeling half empty or half full? At only about 45 days out from the Trump regime, midway into the Biden administration’s first 100 days, nearly two months after the Capitol insurrection, three weeks after the second impeachment, and over 500,000 souls and multiple vaccine approvals into the pandemic, it may be too early to tell which way the winds of history will blow. But one thing is for sure: A page is turning. For me the fierce swoosh of that page is being accompanied by the burbling sound of a glass filling. Maybe it’s because, thanks ... 26 Feb 2021 by Carlos Sandoval