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“Nightmare in the City That Never Sleeps” Could this same nightmare happen nationwide?

This is a must see, I actually saw this documentary tonight on CNBC, and have been looking for it on-line with no luck to post for everyone to see, the BBC Worldwide  has all the videos blocked.  shera~

August 04, 2011

“Nightmare in the City That Never Sleeps”

The BBC documentary featuring the Honorable Ed Koch in “Nightmare in the City That Never Sleeps” will air on CNBC on Monday, August 8th at 1:00 a.m.
Editor’s Note: The August 8th date is the corrected airing time for the program which had previously been incorrectly posted. 
Today, New York is America’s greatest city. But 30 years ago, they couldn’t even keep the lights on. A blackout plunged 7 million people into darkness. Then the nightmare began. Anarchy exploded on the streets: thousands of shops were looted, whole neighborhoods were burned: it seemed the civilization of the city had come to an end.
The financial capital of the wealthiest nation on earth was flat broke. The Statue of Liberty City had lost her freedom, and New York herself trembled on the brink of collapse.
This is the story of what happened in New York in the 1970s. It’s the story of the death of an idealistic welfare state, and of how New York’s climb back to dominance laid the foundations for ThatcherismReaganomics, and the political economy of the rest of the 20th century.

Bankrupt U.S. Cities Indicate Nation’s Future

Many municipalities across the nation have found themselves pushed over the brink by the recession and its lingering aftermath. They are in dire financial straits with little hope of recovery. “This is truly a new era for dealing with troubled municipalities,” said Michael Stanton, publisher of The Bond Buyer, a public finance newspaper.
Cities are going belly up while states and the nation hang on, largely because cities cannot rely on the deus ex machina currency printing that the larger entities rely on. Mayor Doherty explained that he does not have the same options as the Fed or even a state government, saying, “I want the employees to get paid. Our people work hard—our police and fire—I just don’t have enough money, and I can’t print it in the basement.”
These cities are the canaries in the toxic coalmine that is the U.S. economy. Smaller and more fragile than states, they are succumbing to their economic ailments in tragic ways. But the canary analogy breaks down at that point because, unlike the coal miner who leaves the mine after watching his canary keel over, state and federal policymakers are not heeding the warning.

July 13, 1977: Massive Blackout Plunges New York Into Rioting

A number of fail-safes in the system should have prevented such a catastrophic failure. But bad luck (multiple lightning strikes that seemed to find Con Ed utilities), operator mistakes and some substandard facilities maintenance triggered a chain reaction throughout the system that eventually crippled the biggest generator serving New York City. That failure plunged the Big Apple into darkness at around 9:30 p.m.
The blackout couldn’t have come at a worse time for a city that was already down on its luck. When the lights went out, New York was in the midst of a financial crisis and teetering at the edge of bankruptcy. The rioting and looting that followed the blackout marked one of the lowest points in New York history.
In all, 1,616 stores were either looted or damaged during the blackout. More than a thousand fires were set, 14 of them resulting in multiple alarms. And in the biggest mass arrest in city history, 3,776 people were thrown in the jug. The jails were so overcrowded that the overflow had to be held in precinct basements and other makeshift jails.

30 years ago, 3000 hasidim stormed a police station and sacked it, injuring 62 police officers in the process.
Sometimes it was those less mystical Reform Jews, the ones whose modern ways they had renounced several centuries earlier, with whom they didn’t get along. “Caricatures,” Rabbi Nathan Perilman of Manhattan’s Temple Emanu-El called the Hasidim. “Grotesque distortion of Judaism.” Sometimes they didn’t get along with the state: The Brooklyn Hasidim were furious in the mid-1950s, for example, when they discovered that they could not have public housing projects all to themselves. Sometimes they didn’t even much get along with one another; it was not unknown for the bearded men and the shawled and turbaned women of the Satmar and Lubavitch sects to physically clash.
But mostly, as time went on and their poor but settled areas began filling with more and more blacks and Puerto Ricans, they didn’t get along with their new neighbors – the younger specimens of whom, it was true, menaced them quite regularly. There were robberies, rapes, killings. By the mid-1960s, with the tacit approval of the police, Hasidic vigilante squads called Maccabees were prowling the streets in radio cars. Incident followed incident, and by the mid-1970s, nevermind who started what, rock-throwing street melees among blacks and Puerto Ricans and Hasidim were everyday political realities in racially tense Brooklyn, and the cops were usually caught in the middle, standing ever accused by one bunch of showing favoritism to another.
In the summer of 1978, frankly, it did seem that the Hasidim enjoyed a position of some social privilege. They were a significant voting bloc, their rebbes courted by every candidate for office. Lubavitcher headquarters on Eastern Parkway in Crown Heights had a 24-hour police guard. Meanwhile, a year after the blackout riots, blacks were angrier than ever, bitter victims of the War on Poverty’s unfulfilled promises, and they perceived the Hasidim to be disproportionately more advantaged than they were at the community board level. Race-baiting black leaders such as the Rev. Herbert Daughtry were fond of reminding audiences that the city’s new mayor, Edward Koch, was a Jew.
One June day in Crown Heights, a snickering black kid knocked the hat off a passing Hasidic man and was then pounced upon by a Hasidic mob and stomped into a coma. Blacks were enraged. And then, when police charged two of the attackers with attempted murder, the Hasidim were enraged as well.
THE TOWN had not entirely blown up over this incident, but hard feelings remained. In Borough Park on Saturday morning the 2nd of December, when an elderly Jew was stabbed to death by three Puerto Rican youths as he walked home from synagogue, the news raced through the Hasidic community before the old man ever got to the morgue, and all at once there were more than 3,000 Hasidim mobbed outside the 66th Precinct stationhouse on 16th Ave., charging the door and howling for blood.
In 30 minutes of battle with riot cops, they beat up 62 officers, smashed windows, wrecked station equipment, destroyed files and briefly succeeded in occupying the premises – reportedly the first time since the Civil War that a civilian crowd had taken over a New York police station. Six of their own were injured as well, including Brooklyn Assemblyman Samuel Hirsch, who immediately started crying police brutality. “There is a virulent strain of anti-Semitism in the Police Department,” he charged.


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