Thursday, June 05, 2008

Some disingenuousness from FCR and Kruger, plus a Daily News advertisement

Forest City Ratner spokesman Loren Riegelhaupt offers the following explanation for today's rally, in a skeptical New York Sun article headlined Motives of Atlantic Yards Rally Are Questioned:
"We thought it would be a fun day, and there is an important message out there: Brooklyn has evolved and is approaching a new era, and there are people out there that want it to continue to grow," he said.

The "fun day" reference recalls the classic stylings of flack Joe DePlasco, who in June 2004--four years ago!-- told the Brooklyn Papers that sending 350,000 pamphlets to Brooklynites was "just something fun to do."

FCR punts on subsidy query

The Sun also reported:
Mr. Riegelhaupt declined to comment about whether the project would seek additional subsidies...


In April, Chuck Ratner, president of parent Forest City Enterprises (FCE) told investment analysts “we still need more” subsidies.

The malleable Mr. Kruger

State Senator Carl Kruger, he of the curious campaign war chest, is quoted by the Sun: "Yes, I believe that these are the kind of projects the government should be supporting, and in a depressed market we have to step up to the plate."

Is this the same Kruger who brought a posse last November to question Mayor Mike Bloomberg's plan for Coney Island? They wore hats that read, "The Bloomberg Plan: How much $? How long? Who pays?"

In the Post

Meanwhile, the New York Post today offers a brief story, headlined
RALLYING HARD AROUND RATNER, that somehow calls the marquee attendees "a slew of boldface names." The text, in full:
A slew of boldface names in politics and sports has been enlisted for a rally today to garner support for the embattled Atlantic Yards project.

The Rev. Al Sharpton, Curtis Sliwa, former New Jersey Nets Darryl Dawkins and Albert King and hundreds of union members who support developer Bruce Ratner's $4 billion project are expected to attend at Borough Hall.

Daniel Goldstein, a spokesman for opponents, called the rally a sign of Ratner's "desperation" over the project.


An ad in the Daily News

The advertisement sent out yesterday by Forest City Ratner in an E-newsletter also appeared yesterday as a full-page ad (p. 32) in the New York Daily News. The only difference was the late addition of the musical group Second Step to the E-newsletter.

Why the Daily News? Likely because its working-class, significantly minority (and Brooklyn) readership best approximates those most interested in affordable housing and union jobs--and in attending a "fun day" at Borough Hall.

Still, it raises a question: If the Daily News stopped running gushing editorials, would the developer still advertise?

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