The Late Reviewer: Motherless Brooklyn

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June 9, 2020- by Steven E. Greer

Scraping the bottom of the barrel, I am watching the last of the 2019 films that were nominated for Oscars. I watched Ed Norton’s film Motherless Brooklyn. It is poorly written by him, poorly cast, and overall a PC-agenda film. But it is worth watching for this reason:

The film’s main fictional character, Moses Randolph (Alec Baldwin) is based on the real Robert Moses who was perhaps the most corrupt man in history of New York. After WW2, President Eisenhower went on a building spree of highways, bridges, tunnels, etc. to create the suburbs. Automobiles made this possible. Well, Mr. Moses, with a Yale undergrad degree (like Ed Norton) and PhD in political science, was the guy in New York who saw the opportunity to take over control of the entire state.

He achieved this by creating a shadowy fourth branch of government of “authorities” run by appointed un-elected officials. He started with his Borough Authority. There are now close to 600 of these unaccountable autonomous “authorities” in the State of New York. The most well-known are the Port Authority, Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Thruway Authority, Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, New York City Economic Development Corporation, and The Battery Park City Authority, among others.

I found this most interesting because I did not know that Moses started it all with his “authority” He received widespread criticism by local activists who fought his destruction of entire low-income, mostly black, communities as he used eminent domain to build highways through Brooklyn.

Now, some 70-years later, I have carried on their work and have taken the Battery Park City Authority all the way to the supreme court. Regardless of that legal outcome, I have already cleaned house at the BPCA. Everyone from Dennis Mehiel on down have been ousted.

Stay tuned.

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