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Blame 'Gang of' traitors - Carl Kruger, Ruben Diaz Sr. and Pedro Espada 4 MTA Hike


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Blame 'Gang of Three' traitors - Carl Kruger, Ruben Diaz Sr. and Pedro Espada - for MTA fare hike

Thursday, March 26th 2009, 4:00 AM



Take our PollThe blame game

Who do you blame most for the MTA fare hike?



The MTA board, naturally




Governor Paterson




Mayor Bloomberg




The State Senate




The economy




All of the above




None of the above. These things happen.




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The betrayal is clearest on the Manhattan Bridge.


The question is who pays: straphangers like those in the subway trains clanking high over the river or motorists speeding over the span in their cars?


Does the fare go up or do we establish tolls on the East and Harlem River bridges?


It is one or the other.


Anybody with any feeling for this city would say it has to be the tolls.


We are not a metropolis of automobiles like Los Angeles or Houston or those other burgs beyond the Hudson.


What makes us New York is the subway, the big, wonderful system that takes us wherever we want to go at whatever hour, that mixes people of every conceivable background, that is everybody's neighborhood.


Which is why nearly every major figure in the city - politicians, labor leaders, community activists, even patrician Metropolitan Transportation Authority board members - support the so-called Ravitch plan to minimize a fare hike and stave off service cuts by charging motorists who cross into Manhattan.


The unfortunate exception is the "Gang of Three," a trio of state senators from the city: Carl (Cars) Kruger of Brooklyn, along with Ruben (Road Rally) Diaz Sr. and Pedro (Escalade) Espada, both of the Bronx.


The three began the year threatening to go over to the Republicans and scuttle the Democratic majority if they did not get what they wanted.


Diaz was worried about gay marriage.


Espada imagined he might be majority leader.


Kruger wanted - and got - the chairmanship of the Finance Committee, along with a special budget.


The word for that stuff is "shakedown."


Then, the odious three went from their shakedown to opposing tolls for a few thousand motorists at the expense of 4 million straphangers.


The word for that is treason.


And they are not just betraying the city.


New Yorkers who ride the subway rather than a car conserve more than 2 billion gallons of gasoline a year and cut carbon emissions by 100 million pounds a day.


That meant everyone crossing the Manhattan Bridge aboard a Brooklyn-bound Q train at 3:25 p.m. Wednesday was doing a small but important bit to improve the environment and reduce America's dependence on foreign oil.


The windows on the left looked out on the bridge's lower roadway. The great majority of the motor vehicles were private cars - many gas-guzzling SUVs occupied by only a driver.


The straphangers rode along together, chatting or reading or daydreaming. Two felt safe enough to doze off. A full dozen took advantage of the brief interlude of cell phone service afforded by the bridge crossing.


"Hi-it's-me-I'll-get-the-laundry-see-you-soon-love-you-bye," one man said said in a single breath.


Any drivers who made a call would have been breaking the law and posing a mortal danger. Cell phone or no, they fouled the air and clogged the streets as they continued on from the bridge.


The passengers aboard the Q train rode on without inconveniencing a soul or adding even a molecule of pollution.


The Avenue U stop is an easy stroll from Kruger's district office. He at one time offered a "Department of Motor Vehicles Outreach Program" there, allowing people to renew licenses without going the DMV.


"The funding for that ran out," a woman at Kruger's office said Wednesday. "We don't do that anymore. I'm sorry."


Among the recent legislation Kruger has marshaled are Bill S161, requiring car rental firms to provide a full-sized spare tire, and S903, imposing "extensive and detailed requirements upon motor vehicle repair shops."


The measures he opposes most prominently include the Ravitch plan. He and his two allies in idiocy seem to be the crucial votes.


As a result of the the Gang of Three, millions of New Yorkers face a steep fare hike along with severe service cuts that take us another step toward becoming just another city.




WE keep electing these people......and they just laugh all the way to the bank at us.....I wonder if any elected official really cares about the working class person??

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I dont know Mr. Diaz and Mr. Espanda that well but i do know Mr. kruger from my days living in SW brooklyn. His district is Brooklyn that includes the Kings Plaza mall (ie Mill Basin, Bergen Beach Gerrtistean Beach and parts of Gravesend)is the most consertaive and car loving area of the borough more than a surprise Bay Ridge.

That area is so NIMBYS(mostly Irish and Italian residents) it's unbelieve. For years he has said statements for the 'arrest of the Gysypy aka dollar vans' Drivers at KP from Flatbush and Utica Ave to trying to close the mall down for good since in recent years the majority of KP customers are now 'minorities. " And at a meeting i attended on a MTA proposal to extend the B36 to Kings Plaza kruger said what i considered to be a racist theme statement calling the savages from Coney island on opposing that extension.


Kruger from a Bay News (local weekly paper in SW Brooklyn area)also stated similar comments about extending the B83 to the Gateway Mall too.


I normally dont yell the racism word often like john liu, Norman Siegal or Al Sharpton but honestly i dont think too highly of Kruger. So it not a suprise the auto lobby supports him.


As both a Car owner and MNRR customer i dont mind paying a 'reasonable' toll to get to/from Manhattan no more than $2.00. I just hate the fact these crooked lawmakers did not allow the full Legistalure to debate the Manhattan toll. And thus the entire region is that close to a Doomesday Budget and Cuts due to selffish Political leaders.:mad::tdown:

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While the MTA did really give straphangers the shaft, you have to look at it this way: You can still get almost anywhere in the city for only $2.50. Considering most other systems charge by destination, that's a bargain.


I believe the MTA had more they could've cut before service and raising fares. NY Bureaucracy; 'nuff said.


Well then would you like to pay 2.50 for less service?,don't get me wrong I don't mind paying $2.50 but if the trains and buses can't make it on time is not worth it, not to mention eliminate some bus routes is going to hurt alot of people in all 5 boroughs.


As for the MTA board, the they have no soul,what the point if there in the board if they don't take mass transit,at lest one member stood up for the straphanger.


!!If you know something say something ...to who? !!theirs nobody there!!!.

I think he said it best

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