Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Push to have Civic Virtue returned to Queens

Letter PDC GreenWood 140605


From Triumph of Civic Virtue:

Given that Civic Virtue was moved to Green-Wood over the objections of local officials and residents, and that City taxpayers footed bills totaling $99,265.00 to not only conserve Civic Virtue but to aid and abet its move to Green-Wood, the Task Force was amazed to find during a recent visit to Green-Wood that the cemetery has installed a sign in front of Civic Virtue that denies both of those facts, and conveys false and misleading information about the circumstances of Civic Virtue’s temporary loan to Green-Wood.

Greenwood’s plainly inaccurate sign states (1.) that the City of New York “could not afford to conserve” Civic Virtue and was “without the funds to do so”; and (2.) that the City could not afford the conservation expense because Civic Virtue “lacked the support of local officials”. Those statements only promulgate the self-serving, false narrative that Green-Wood has concocted around Civic Virtue, and they could not be further from the truth.

CivicVirtue Handout 140610


“Green-Wood may have hauled Civic Virtue into the cemetery, but that doesn’t entitle Green-Wood to re-write history, and to mis-inform the statue’s visitors about the taxpayer funding of the statue’s cleaning and conservation, or the fact that elected officials and the public actually pleaded to keep Civic Virtue on Queens Boulevard,” said Task Force member Robert LoScalzo.

Accordingly, on June 5, 2014, the Task Force sent letters to Green-Wood President Richard Moylan and to Public Design Commission President Signe Nielsen, demanding that Green-Wood immediately remove its false and misleading sign, and that any prospective replacement sign be subject to a public hearing and approval by the Public Design Commission.

CivicVirtueTaskForce NEWS RELEASE 140606

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

Which local elected official wanted it to stay where it was? I thought those woman all thought it was too sexist?

Queens Crapper said...

Here you go.

Anonymous said...

Meh, the Vallones should stay in Astoria.

Anonymous said...

Vallone only cared because he was running for BP

Anonymous said...

Hang it up people - there are plenty of things here in Queens that should be saved that once again, because we are so afraid of the politicians, we do little more than whine.

Brooklyn is the opposite.

The sexist thing was an excuse. The real reason the politicians do not want this because LaGuardia sent this out here as a dig - Queens has always had a reputation for corruption and he thought (justifiably) that this is the perfect place for it.

We mistreated it and do not deserve it - as usual it sat there falling apart for all of us to see and we did nothing waiting for the adults in the room (read politicians) to do the heavy lifting for us.

Brooklyn did a fine job of restoration and deserves it.

And I would wager we did not learn our lesson.

Anonymous said...

Vallone was just campaigning so the rest of the borough can get distracted from his family's appalling record:

he was trying to distance himself from his community whose historic fabric looks like the Vandals went through - forever making the entire borough both a laughing stock as well as a no-go zone for community preservation efforts.

Taking 4 million of our taxes to plug a hole in the Astoria Park wading pool to make a ' theater ' while ignoring the Steinway Mansion for 4 years so some two bit shadowy wanna-be developer types can hack it apart is his real legacy.

georgetheatheist said...

You can see the actual sign and a close-up of its wording (inter alia) here.

Also, my exclusive video of its ignominious removal here.

Anonymous said...

Hey crappette:

The photo of Vallone is hilarious. I think it was taken at the zoo. On his right is a Queens Guttersnipe and on his left...well what the hell is that on his left?

Anonymous said...

Anon said:Vallone was just campaigning so the rest of the borough can get distracted from his family's appalling record:

he was trying to distance himself from his community whose historic fabric looks like the Vandals went through - forever making the entire borough both a laughing stock as well as a no-go zone for community preservation efforts.

Taking 4 million of our taxes to plug a hole in the Astoria Park wading pool to make a ' theater ' while ignoring the Steinway Mansion for 4 years so some two bit shadowy wanna-be developer types can hack it apart is his real legacy.

You are absolutely right in your views about Peter Vallone. I hope people can see what his real legacy was and it wasn't one that a proud Queens resident would like. He was a fake and just cared about developing not preserving our history or neighborhoods. That poor Steinway Mansion and Old Astoria Village. Someone should write a book on the what he did to Astoria. Anyways Queens and it's residents need to wake up and many need to learn English to know what is really going on. Write to these damned elected shady officials and blast them. This Civic Virtue statue is another example of the garbage officials we have in Queens. Lets just let things rot here and either ship them out or demolish them. That should be Queens' motto "Rot and Destroy"

Anonymous said...

Secession is the only way to restore Civic Virtue to Queens!

Jon Torodash said...

"The real reason the politicians do not want this because LaGuardia sent this out here as a dig - Queens has always had a reputation for corruption and he thought (justifiably) that this is the perfect place for it."

Only half true. According to the sources I found, BP George Upton Harvey was eager to bring the statue to Queens, which was convenient for LaGuardia.

Back then it seems, at least a few politicians had a nickel's worth of good sense.

(History of the statue)

Richard Iritano said...

Don't cry any tears over Peter Vallone. Once his false, fake and failed leadership was finally rejected for his latest cradle-to-grave city payroll flop as Queens borough president, our bloodsucking cockroach of a Governor, Andrew Cuomo instantly sprang into action to hook him up with a cushy, vacuous position at state level that continues to reward epic failure. Alas, both Cuomo and Vallone, Jr. are voracious thieves that reveal colossal arrogance, and unprecedented cowardice--and they are but two of many. It's "Don't blow my scam--and I won't blow yours!" That effectively summarizes the whole of Albany, City Hall and beyond that engenders total corruption, graft, kickback, payoff and coverup--not to mention cronyism, nepotism, favoritism, preferential treatment and a collapse of honest, ethical leadership (that leads by example). In order to find that kind of character, integrity and principle, one would have to travel into outer space--and discover a new alien civilization!

Richard Iritano said...

For the last time, Triumph of Civic Virtue is not sexist or misogynistic. Its allegorical symbolism represents the mythological figure of Hercules (as modeled after a live, working Irish fireman, in 1905), and embraces and illustrates virtue over corruption and vice for all humankind. As a testament to the alarmist idiocracy of neo-fascism that now passes for city government, the dumb asses and troglodytes from the Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS), the Public Design Commission and former Queens Borough President Helen Marshall (a jail cell should be reserved for her), chose to hoist a 22-ton work of precious Italian marble into the skyline of Kew Gardens by crane (at a taxpaying cost of $100,000) and flatbed this monument into a special armature that evicted Civic Virtue to Green-Wood Cemetary, where it remains on temporary loan--and banished to graveyard obscurity--among the dead. When I revived the movement to conserve Civic Virtue in June 2008, by contacting District Manager Mary Ann Carey, of Community Board 9, I never could have fathomed that my simple request to clean, repair, restore and conserve this 71-year gift to Queens County (as bequeathed by Angelina Crane, and sanctioned by Fiorello LaGuardia), that any public servant wielded unauthorized power to remove this breathtaking sculpture with impunity--because of a minority group of uneducated, ignorant women who still believe that Civic Virtue is misogynistic. Worse, there was a working fountain of life and beauty that supported Civic Virtue's art, that could have also been repaired and restored to a working fountain--thereby creating a public square that would certainly engender new life, luncheon in the square, new businesses that would open to supply its art patrons with food and services, etc. But the empowered idiots of city government engaged in profligate, wanton waste by burdening Joe taxpayer with $100,000, when it would have cost less that a third of that to repair it on site! Now I know why there was no one in the audience at Community Board 9's final meeting before summer recess, last night, June 10th. The do nothing, no nothing, see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil board members are as mentally lazy as pet rocks--while Rome burns! The press (if you can call them that), are even less challenging. Whenever will the power be returned to the people? Freedom and democracy are no longer free and democratic. Case in point: With the incoming new Borough President Melinda Katz, even less will be accomplished with Civic Virtue. She whaled on last night about the new progressive movement of Mayor Bill de Blasio, while extolling the virtues of her administration's interest in the people of her community. Meanwhile, in the reality that I know, her hack staff that she inherited from Helen Marshall haven't returned my calls and e-mails for nearly nine weeks since I met with them (along with Mary Ann Carey, Robert LoScalzo and Jon Torodash), on April 8, 2014. I also delivered a package to Katz's personal secretary, as I met Melinda in her office, and still no response from her attorney, Alyssa Vasquez. Like I always say folks: Same circus, different clowns. And does anyone still wonder why voter turnout continues to decline in New York City to lowest rank? Therefore, I have resigned myself to accept that corruption in New York is a way of life that is condoned and bred from within. The stranglehold that local, regional and national politicians have maintained over their subjects far surpasses the collective forces of organized crime worldwide. It will never end. Freedom and democracy are dead and punishable by solitary lockdown. What a filthy world!

Anonymous said...

The debate over restoring civic virtue went on for years, Vallone only showed up at the very end when someone finally stepped up with an alternative. Successive Borough President's Claire Shulman and Helen Marshall, who occupied the office for the final 27 years! that the statue stood outside Queens Borough Hall who controlled the funds to act were instead actively agitating to banish the statue. Here is a quote from Shulman in 1987:

''A municipal building is not an appropriate place for a statue that portrays women as evil and treacherous''.

There was a similar quote from Marshall about this decades later, I think I even saw it here on Queens Crap.

When the local politicians willfully neglect a work of art for over a quarter century and actively campaign for its removal, its a bit much to say local politicians wanted it to stay based on one campaign season press conference at the very end.

Queens Crapper said...

You seem to not understand that it was restored with our tax dollars regardless of what previous borough presidents thought of it. It didn't have to be moved, there was no alternative,

Anonymous said...

I'm certainly not happy the statue was moved, but I think it is obvious Shulman and Marshall purposely neglected it to force its removal.

Here is Marshall's quote;

“I’ve passed by that statue many times, and I don’t like its message,” Marshall said during a budget hearing earlier this month. “It would cost probably $2 million to clean, and we do need services for children and seniors"

In fact it only cost $50,000 to clean and restore it, the other $50,000 was for transporting it to Greenwood.

It is too bad this previously unheard of city agency that paid up didn't fund its cleaning and conservation when it was still here, but then Shulman and then Marshall (who was serving BP when the deed was done) probably prevented it behind the scenes.



“I’ve passed by that statue many times, and I don’t like its message,” Marshall said during a budget hearing earlier this month. “It would cost probably $2 million to clean, and we do need services for children and seniors

Anonymous said...

A reading of the newspaper when the statue was dedicated showed that the occasion was all but ignored - they did it in a brief low-key perfunctory ceremony - almost everyone that showed up was on lunch break and worked at borough hall.

If Harvey was in favor it was because he was a rare Queens Borough president that campaigned against corruption of the Connolly-Patten machine.

It is amazing when you look back at the beeps in Queens that with a handful of notable exceptions, they were either corrupt or non-entities.

The bottom line is that Queens treated this pretty much the way the borough treats anything that is beautiful or unique or special.

Today, from Keiths to Bowne House to St Saviours to the Worlds Fair site to soon the Steinway Mansion this borough has a malicious streak and wantonly destroys all that is good.

It is one of the reasons that the rest of the city really doesn't want to deal with this borough - from its leadership to the man in the street.

While the rest of the city is moving forward Queens marches in lock step toward stagnation, petty smug politicians hollowing out communities for campaign donations so that third world human warehouses rather than the Unisphere symbolize the borough,

and tout tomorrow's SROs for the 21st century proles of Manhattan's elite that will soon line the waterfront on brownfields.

Queens drones on autopilot decade after decade about diversity and yet more diversity - scarcely realizing that the rest of the city is diverse too - and can think of other things to say.

No one really cares what Queens has to say, think, or do.

Let the statue be.

If you have energy to do something, there are a dozen worthy projects that you can do much good rather than wasting your time, effort, and energy tilting at windmills - but then, its Queens and its a place with a logic only unto itself.

ron s said...

Hate to be the bearer of bad news---despite the fact that it was ridiculous to condemn the statue and criminal to move it, it is not coming back. Now that the fake condemnation of the statue has taken place, and the 100G has been spent to move it, (plus repairs), no one will have enough interest, will, power or money to get it back. You will still have to fight the phony feminist arguments, spend another 100G to bring it back etc. Won't happen.

Anonymous said...

I don't understand your last comment Crappy.

Queens Crapper said...

What my last comment means is that GreenWood Cemetery did not pay for restoration, a FOIL request done by the Civic Virtue group show that the City paid for it. So it didn't have to be moved.

Anonymous said...

It will become a pedestal for Queen Catherine, an other fiction that WILL NOT GO AWAY and the officials stubbornly insist is real BECAUSE THEY SAY SO.

They believe that if you retreat once in the face of any fact God knows what will happen.

Anonymous said...

And then there is Marshall's Civic Atrium built in her honor for......$25million! It's still not finished. The beautiful Japanese cherry trees have yet to be replaced, as she had promised. She belongs in jail along the rest of her slithering gang.

Anonymous said...

his community whose historic fabric looks like the Vandals went through


hmmmm....

Vallones - the Vandals of Vallonia.

Has a nice ring to it, dontcha think?

Richard Iritano said...

When will the public good start to outweigh political gain. All Queens politicians are a pathological, treasonous scourge of sadistic, deadbeat, hustling sociopathy. They lie, cheat and steal easier than they breathe! Just take a staggering look at how they botched a simple, routine cleaning, repair and conservation of 'Triumph of Civic Virtue'--an illustrative, universal allegory of the powers of civic virtue triumphing over corruption and vice! No wonder Schulman and Marshall betrayed public trust and all fiduciary obligations to care for this precious, priceless monument (that any and all of the great capitals of Europe would be gleaming with pride to display)--because they are bastions of hypocrisy, entrenched in the deepest wells of absolute corruption, dishonesty, dishonor, disloyalty, dysfunction, dereliction of public duty and flagrant abuses of power that are beyond unconscionable! Now, we have a descendant of Claire Schulman--and her unprecedented ignorance of art and utter failure to address impulse control issues--back in Queens Borough Hall--with her faux bodyguard, and baby daddy Curtis Sliwa, in tow--holding court on Queens Boulevard, and her name is Melinda Katz. Honestly, could it get any worse for Queens County (or its new namesake, the Fourth World), when even a precious antiquity that used to be publicly displayed, in the name of Civic Virtue for all humankind, is getting resistance from the top by the next round of empowered idiots, who completely ignore freedom and democracy from its taxpaying subjects. Isn't that the very definition of taxation without representation? Please, Queens County, let the revolution begin. It starts with Civic Virtue--but where does it end in rescinding human rights and free speech? Awake from suspended animation, onliners everywhere!