I’ve written in the past about the development of the Nets (basketball) new arena in Brooklyn — a development that has involved eminent domain, subsidies, and race-baiting. This week, we get the news that the final holdout, and the loudest voice against the development, has accepted the theft of his house and his eviction, pocketed a $3 million settlement, and moved out.
The story intrigued me because it was big intramural battle on the Left. On the winning side are Chuck Schumer, developer Bruce Ratner, and ACORN. On the losing side are liberal, ill-shaven, bespectacled hipsters (including some of my friends).
The dividing line isn’t color or political affiliation. It’s people with access to government might vs. people without access to government might.
And as Ratner’s bulldozer shifts into high gear, Politico gives us this gem:
So, there Schumer was Monday morning, introducing Reid to the big-money developers of the New Jersey Nets’ new $4.9 billion facility in Brooklyn. Schumer told the developers that he and Reid had been “through war together,” and he called the Nevadan his “foxhole buddy,” according to someone who was there.
“He is beloved by our caucus, from the most conservative to the most liberal,” Schumer told the fundraisers on Monday, the source said. “He does a great job of bringing together 59 Democrats of such broad philosophical and geographic diversity. And the egos are not small. What Harry does is amazing.”
Monday’s fundraiser was headlined by Bruce Ratner, the real estate mogul who owns the Nets — and who has donated more than $127,000 to Democrats in recent years.
While Schumer’s office won’t say how much money the event raised for Reid, cash poured in from a number of developers and real estate types. The event came just hours before a procedural vote on a plan to rewrite the rules for Wall Street, but Reid’s office stressed that the donors who turned out Monday weren’t bankers or Wall Street officials — and that, in fact, many work for Ratner’s company as well as for electrical and construction companies.
This is what big government does.