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Thursday, January 27, 2011

Fox News' Glenn Beck Knocks Co-Op City

The Bronx took another hit on Cable TV this week when right-wing political pundit Glenn Beck compared  Co-Op City, the borough's massive housing cooperative development, to a socialist country.

Last week, Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr., blasted the TV show "American Idol," for its negative depictions of the borough, after one contestant took camera crews on a tour of his former home on the Grand Concourse.

Glenn Beck, of course, is no stranger to controversy and stirring up anger. His hour-long show consists of him standing before a TV monitor and giant chalkboard, usually ranting against liberal politics.

In Tuesday's episode--the entirety of which is embedded above--Beck rails against the idea of social equality and uses Co-Op City as an example of  "a place where everyone’s life is interchangeable." His comments start at the 34-minute mark.

"Sounds like these beautiful complexes—this is in New York City," a sarcastic Beck says to the camera, as a photo of Co-Op City appears on the screen behind him. "Don’t you want to live there? Oh, man. That is so beautiful. That’s the great society for you, right there. And those are the lush ones."

Bronx officials and Co-Op City residents immediately fired back.

"How dare he?" Councilman Jimmy Vacca told the Daily News. "I'd like to know the last time Glenn Beck stepped into Co-Op City."

What do you think of Beck's remarks? Share your thoughts in the comments section.


  1. I think Glenn Beck is a racist, plain and simple. Why doesn't he say anything about the largely white Amalgamated or Reservoir Oval complexes that are basically the same as Coop City, except for demographics?

  2. anonymous, that's EXACTLY what i was thinking and have posted in other places. good call!

    if glenn beck wants to see socialism at work in the bronx he ought to visit the amalgamated housing development. the oldest limited equity housing cooperative in the United States, amalgamated was founded by the Amalgamated Clothing Workers Union.... and with its community programs and community-for-all perspective it's as "socialist" as any development anywhere. and... it's one of the most successful and stable housing initiatives and inventions, not only in the bronx and city, but in the world. to this day it's a shining example of what this kind of housing can be.

  3. I think he doesn't mention Amalgamated, because he does not see it on his commute from Greenwich CT. A place he can afford to live, but most people in Co-Op city cannot, by spewing his vile every night. BTW, I live in Amalgamated, and the racial make up is very well balanced, probably the most well balanced out of all of the cooperatives.

  4. Let's be honest here people. Coop City is nothing more than a political shithole. It always has been and always will be. Coop City is mostly black and spanish with a few of the elderly Jews left over from the beginning. Thats it. Crime and drugs exist. You cant get a townhouse unless youre on the Board or know someone on the Board. Its a disgrace. The place in and of itself has a lot of potential. The apartments are nice and the views are good. The roaches however in the laundryrooms and such are nighmarish. It takes the management forever to fix things in the apartments. There are murders, rapes and everything else in this supposed wonderful community. Tell me why its so wonderful.? Cheap rent on a one bedroom apartment? Maybe. Is your life worth that? Is your safety in poorly lit garages worth it? Glen Beck is just saying what a lot of people dont have the guts to say. Coop City could be beautiful. But in order for that to happen all the politics need to go away and let the different departments do their jobs correctly and the place would turn around. Plenty of schools around, not that they are that safe either. But it does have a lot of promise.

  5. Unfortunately, he's not too far off the mark.
    Many of the problems that Co-op City has faced over the years are from the same causes that plagued socialism from the Mayflower Compact to the fall of the Soviet Union: No ownership means no accountability.
    The older Bronx cooperatives might have worked because they were small enough that members took interest and could have impact. And at the risk of being branded racist, with a more homogeneous population, there was more tribal ownership, where Co-op City was a mix of the old (white) middle class and the new (non-white) middle class, leading to racial tension instead of cooperation. (With a non-limited-equity co-op there is an even clearer property interest.)

    Other than the recent period where the Greenways became parking lots, the physical plant at Co-op City is as beautiful as ever, for that like Le Corbusier's tower-in-the-park style (and you're not going to get detached single family homes any where near that price within NYC). But it hasn't been a co-operative in any sense (except tax consequences) since the rent strike a few years after it opened. It's a middle-income rental housing project with a rather steep security deposit they call shareholder equity.

  6. i think what makes beck's comments objectionable are not that he singled out the bronx or co-op city, but his political references. the posters here are certainly correct to point out co-op city's problems - and there are MANY!- but to use those to make some blanket political ideologicial point is wrong.... in particular because it just doesn't hold up, especially with the example of amalgamated here in the bronx.

  7. Wait a second, Gax! I thought you hated anonymity? Maybe it's just anonymous posters with whom you disagree that you despise so vehemently?

  8. apparently you didn't read what i wrote! i said i did NOT hate anonymity on these blogs. in fact, i pointed out that it wasn't something i really cared a lot about. to refresh your memory, this is what i wrote:

    "most of the time I really don't care about the anonymous thing and have had specific discussions about that with the people who manage this blog about it... but when i get kinda called out that i can't take it that i'm hiding behind my tv show (which is really funny when u think about it), and the numerous other things that were said here, then it does bother me that they do it anonymously."

    i think it's pretty clear what i was saying. if i get called out personally, i think it's a little under-handed to do it anonymously. but other than that, it doesn't really bother me.

    i'm much more interested in dialogue about the bronx. and while i guess i do appreciate that you seem to be concerned about me, i think we'd all be better off if you worried less about me and more about discussing the bronx.

  9. Racial Tension occurs in Co-op city as well as other parts of the Bronx is due to the lack of true cooperative environment. The individuals on the boards do not represent the people in the cooperatives. Secondly, like every business, the cooperatives need to change with the times. This exacerbates the existing tension. Gentrification is seen in many sections in the Bronx but the racial tension still exists. Where were these Anglo Saxon warriors when the Bronx was burning? Since they cannot afford the suburbs anymore they come to take over the Bronx. Is this progress? I do not think so.. Just another injustice levied on the people of the Bronx.

  10. I agree with the last person. There should be affirmative action on the low equity coops. All these white folks in amgamated can afford the burbs. That's where they should be. Give their spots to people of color. Why do white people get mitchell lama but minority folks get nycha? We shouldn't stand for this injustice levied on the Bronx. White people living in your midst, means you won't be living there much longer. Hello Newburgh, hello hazelton, Pa, hello Hempstead. Hello mount Vernon.

  11. Glen Beck is strong on rhetoric, weak on facts. The units at Coop City are not all interchangeable. Nobody who stopped to think about it would believe for a second that a unit on the ground floor of one of the towers would be similar, or cost a similar amount, to a unit on the top floor, let alone one of the townhouses.

    It really isn't true to say that Coop City is one of the lush housing complexes in New York City, either. Perhaps he should go take a look at Starrett City, which has more lush landscaping.

    I would also be curious to know where Glen Beck stands on all those gated communities that proliferate in areas where many of his viewers live. Does he have the same intense animosity toward interchangeable housing when it looks more suburban, and has a different demographic composition?

  12. GAX, what are you talking about - all you seem to do whine and complain about people posting on this blog anonymously...it's very clear that you only care about the issue when you do not agree with the commenter. Whatever - your contradictions do not surprise me anymore. You think you're hot shit just because you host a public access talk show. Yes, I'm posting this anonymously....but basically just b/c I love how much it pisses you off.

  13. It's the same old garbage, let's beat up on the Bronx. Yes, the Bronx has been plagued by many things for example corruption, bad politicians, urban blight, but who is talking about what's good about it. There are many good things that are going on in the Bronx that we need to talk about. I was raised here and I have seen the Bronx at its low and high points. But, this is no different than any other place. Co-Op City has its problems, but it is still a nice place to live. I have been there for 16 years. Glen Beck is just using this community as a cheap shot. This is one time that anybody who has conscience should shut this character down. To make fun of where someone lives and how they live speaks to his character of being a low life. If he for one minute would bring himself to meet the people of this community, he wouldn't say what he is saying on television. I challenge Glen Beck to come to this neighborhood and host a forum to address what he said to this community so we can have an open dialogue and not launch attacks on a community that can't defend themselves on his televison show.

  14. Glenn Beck is no racist and what he says is MORE than true, more than any of you know. Maybe some of you do know, however I will still shine a light here for those that do not on a subject that hit too close to home. Things have gotten so bad in co-op city that the community has even resorted to tactics of gangstalking individuals. There are very serious issues of gangstalking going on in co-op city. People are being targeted that have done absolutely nothing wrong and are not involved in anything other than trying to live their lives. One person I am quite fond of is even followed around his apartment by his upstairs neighbor who deals drugs. How is that possible you say? Lookup gangstalking. Now why is it that he hasn't been arrested for drug selling and use years ago? And why would someone of no moral character be told to follow people around and harass those who do have character? Should it not be the other way around if anything? On another note, why are all these people allowed to sell drugs right in front of the so-called security, meanwhile the normal people receive scowls from security if they don't become best friends with the so-called officers? I myself have lived there and have seen the place crumble slowly and it is continuing. It's only that now, someone is shining a light on the sad occurences.

  15. @ Anonymous from 8:31 on 1/28/11 - those sound like very real concerns. But that is really not what Beck is concerned about, and nothing he is saying will do the slightest thing to improve any of those problems.

  16. Hey Gax,
    Would you like to explain the following comment your crafted on Jan 4?

    GAX in the Bronx said...

    i put my name on my comments. y'all should have the guts to do that also

    It kind of sounds like you think anonymous commenters hvae no guts. Explain.

  17. We've removed a comment that included a personal attack, and we will continue to do that. So, please, disagree and argue all you want -- we're all for a spirited discussion -- but personal attacks will be removed immediately. One more thing: we have regular debates here at BxNN about whether to continue to allow anonymous comments. We tend to always err slightly on the side of enabling more discussion, but I must tell you that anonymous comments like those we have removed recently are slowly pushing us toward the other side. So, please keep that in mind. Thanks.

  18. Why not take the personal attack aimed at Mr. Beck down? He was attacked as a racist with no basis by the first comment. Rather strange, mother superior. You probably shouldn't scold and lecture your readers when they don't agree with you. Censorship is always wrong, BNN.

  19. Why was this comment allowed to stay?

    "You think you're hot shit just because you host a public access talk show"

    What is your definition of what will be removed and what is allowed to stay?

    Can we get a clear editorial policy and definition? If start down the slippery slope of picking and choosing comments based on their content, you abdicate objectivity.

  20. OK, just came across this thread and some thoughts:
    1) Is it really new to everyone that Beck is totally insane and openly racist?
    2) Why am I not surprized that this blog is picking and choosing which comments to publish - they pick and choose which media stories to highlight doesn't they? most recently i was surprized to see that they didn't link to Mr. kappstatter's weekly column - they link to that thing eevery week, but this week b/c it contained negaitve content about there finances and the firing of one of there writers, they didn't link to it.
    I mean, i guess it's fine if this is really just a blog, but i kind of thought of it as a legititmite news source for a while....but it seems it's not? i'm actually pretty confused.

  21. Is the staff done blogging for today? No response? At whom was the removed post directed? Was it about Mr. Moss himself?

    Did Mr. Moss make a hasty, emotional decision to remove a comment made about himself, but not give other people like Gax in the Bronx and Glenn Beck the same courtesy. Previous commenters pointed out personal attacks against each of these people, but the comments stayed.

    I kind of agree with Offended Anonymous. Can we get an official policy on how and when this blog will determine what it allows to be said and what it silences?

    What is the clearly defined policy for deleting, removing and implicitly devaluing your readers' feelings?

  22. since this seems to have turned into a conversation about posting anon vs. with name/handle, i'd like to add my two cents...
    why doesn't bxnn actually do a post about this issue inviting reader feedback? that would sit a whole lot better with me than essentially being scolded by the editor (the comment/reprimand from jordan really came off as, "kids, i will turn this car around right now if you don't start behaving!"). does anybody have an example of a blog or website where people are forced to sign in with their names before posting comments? it seems to me that is would be rather unsuccessful, but i could certainly be wrong (wouldn't be the first time, just ask my wife, lol)
    you guys really have to get a handle on this situation - it's really quite annoying

  23. It sounds as though MANY who are posting about Beck and his comments about Co-op City DO NOT LIVE in Co-op. I have lived in the community for 34 years, and MOST of what has been said is "questionable." "Gangstalking" and racial tensions? Really? I have not heard or read about any instances of this in either community paper, or in the "gossip" that goes on throughout the community. And between in-laws, old friends from Truman H.S., neighbors, etc., I assure you I hear most things before they appear in the Co-op Times or City News.

    Co-op has a NUMBER of problems, mostly stemming from inept management (Marion Scott headed by Cooper), and years of dishonesty and politics on the board of directors, which has not operated in the best interest of the cooperators in years.

    Beck's assertion that all Co-op residents lives are interchangeable, is LAUGHABLE! We have, in Co-op, a wonderful mix of blue collar workers (both currently employed and retired)and white collar employees (also currently employed and retired). We have uniform personnel (both currently employed and retired), we have teachers, secretaries, nurses, and lawyers. Just about any profession you can think of is represented in Co-op. Because of the diversity of employment, there is also a varied standard of living for cooperators. Interchangeable? I think not.

    Glenn Beck (and his ilk) is comfortable disparaging Co-op because of its demographics. Beck is not interested in stepping foot in the community to engage in any meaningful dialogue because that would require him to look at factual information, as opposed to his usual rhetorical propaganda which is Beck's stock and trade.

    Glenn Beck makes his money being a hatemonger. The more hate he spews the more dialogue he creates, the more money he earns. Let's do America a HUGE favor, ignore Glenn Beck and hopefully he will GO AWAY!

  24. Still crickets from the editorial staff here...

  25. it seem that there are some that have not been to coop city. yes it has it problems with management. and like some places in the city some minor problems with youth. But since being here for 1o years, never had a problem with roaches mice, some minor problems, as the case with any home ownership. fox news doesn't hire news casters, they hire sensationalist. prime example that idiot sarah palin. There years of stupidity is enough. love republicans for destroying this country and yet want to blame obama. they destroyed this country in eight years. nuff said. This idiot needs to work on saturday night live. where are they (comments) getting all this crime reports from? crime is everywhere, question is: how rampid is it at? certainly not here in coop city.

  26. Sometimes NYTimes.com Comments get vile beyond the pale. At least NYT.com has a standard, i.e. "fit to print". Maybe nasties could be redacted, and readers left to fill in the mean meanings? It's so much easier, even on this "open site" to just click on Anon. ***icle***

  27. What is this blog site's standard?


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