Friday, October 31, 2008

Who's made the AY timetable gaffe? (Jon) Benguiat or Bertha (Lewis)?

Journalist Michael Kinsley famously posited that "A gaffe is when a politician tells the truth."

By that measure, on Monday, when Jon Benguiat, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz's Director of Planning and Development, "blurted out" (in the words of the Brooklyn Paper), “I don’t know if we’re going to get the Nets,” it was a gaffe.

Yes, it might have been embarrassing to Markowitz, an unabashed Atlantic Yards booster. However, given all the chatter about a potential sale of the team and the delays in starting arena construction, Benguiat's statement was simple candor.

The Architect's Newspaper, which calls it "shocking news," got a statement from Markowitz's office expressing confidence in the project but not acknowledging the recent reports casting doubt on Forest City Ratner's plans.

Less credible, and thus more of a real gaffe, was ACORN head Bertha Lewis's unwillingness to acknowledge any doubts about the project and its timetable.

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