Koch Supports Bloomberg’s Food Bans
In a contentious interview on “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio,” former New York Mayor Ed Koch expressed support for suggestions by some members of the city’s Board of Health to ban large tubs of popcorn and big cups of milk-containing beverages.
Those proposed bans were reportedly discussed during a meeting earlier this month of NYC’s 11-member health board at which Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s proposed embargo on sugary drinks larger than 16 ounces was approved.
The former mayor said he strongly backed Bloomberg’s soda ban. “I also supported his proposal which he offered to the state legislature earlier to tax the beverages that exceed that amount [of 16 ounces],” Koch added.
This radio host challenged Koch: “Where does it end? I mean, why not ban people from crossing the streets because it can be dangerous. Why not ban the sun because of the UV rays. I mean, we can learn a lot from the ladies of Afghanistan. Why not have everybody in New York City walk around in a full burqa because the sun can harm them? … If it starts with the banning of food, it’s a slippery slope to becoming a nanny state.”
Koch retorted: “Well, I don’t agree with you with all of that. That relates to regulation. If you have over-regulation, it’s wrong. If you have under-regulation, it’s wrong and the question is to get a balance.”
On the Middle East, Koch said he was involved in making Obama more pro-Israel. “I think Israel is in great danger, [and] I thought the president was not giving [the issue] enough attention,” Koch stated. “He’s changed. And I believe I had something to do with the change.”
He added, “I think Obama has done a terrific job in the last six months in support of Israel. And I want to praise him and I want to reelect him.”
Did The New Party Start It All?
Is the socialist-oriented New Party the missing link at the center of the now infamous 1995 meeting that was said to have launched President Obama’s political career in Weatherman founder Bill Ayers’s living room?
It was at that meeting that New Party member Alice Palmer announced she wanted Obama as her successor as state senator since she was stepping down to run for Congress.
This column has discovered that in the July 1996 edition of the New Party’s newsletter, the New Party News, the controversial party announced that “the Illinois New Party capped off a month-long house party drive in Chicago.” Further review of New Party literature from 1995 and 1996 finds that so-called house parties were regularly utilized by the New Party to introduce candidates to leading party activists as well as to raise money and recruit new members.
It is known that single-payer activist Quentin Young, who advised Obama on healthcare when the politician was a state senator, was present at the parlor meeting at the Ayers’s residence. Young was listed by the New Party as an early party founder and builder.
“I can remember being one of a small group of people who came to Bill Ayers’s house to learn that Alice Palmer was stepping down from the senate and running for Congress,” Young has been quoted as saying. “[Palmer] identified [Obama] as her successor.”
Chicago-based blogger Maria Warren was also present. She wrote that she remembered watching Obama give a “standard, innocuous little talk” in Ayers’s home. “They were launching him,” Warren wrote, “introducing him to the Hyde Park community as the best thing since sliced bread.”
It would make sense that the New Party sponsored the get-together for Palmer’s announcement. Palmer was the New Party’s signed candidate for office. The New Party, which had partnered closely with ACORN, was mobilizing support for Palmer among its constituents and the larger Chicago progressive community.
New Party founder and Marxist activist Carl Davidson recalled screening Palmer and signing her up to the party. Wrote Davidson:
“In the next two elections in the city … the New Party has taken a slightly different approach. It organized a citywide candidates forum and invited a number of progressive candidates. Of those responding, two were of special interest, Alice Palmer and Willie Delgado …Both Palmer and Delgado attended the [New Party] forum and were thoroughly questioned by 70 or so New Party members. At the close, both publicly signed a ‘contract’ with the New Party… Two weeks later, the New Party formally endorsed them and is now mobilizing support.”