Thursday, January 27, 2011

Glenn Beck blasts Bronx, compares Co-Op City to failed socialist state

Wednesday, January 26th 2011, 9:25 PM

Fox News host Glenn Beck mocked the Bronx's Co-Op City on his show, drawing ire.
Fox News host Glenn Beck mocked the Bronx's Co-Op City on his show, drawing ire.

Right-wing pundit Glenn Beck has roiled residents of the Bronx's Co-Op City - suggesting their affordable community is an example of the failed socialism that once ruled the USSR.

"Once you say there's a place where everyone's life is interchangeable, everyone then has exactly the same stuff, which sounds like these beautiful complexes," the Fox News broadcaster told viewers of "The Glenn Beck Show" on Tuesday.

An image of Co-Op City then flitted across Beck's monitor.

"Do you want to live there? This is Co-Op City. Oh man! This is so beautiful," Beck said sarcastically. "That's the Great Society for you, and those are the lush [buildings]."

In 1955, New York lawmakers passed Mitchell-Lama legislation offering developers tax breaks for building apartments to be sold to working-class people at below-market rates.

The law helped build the massive "city within a city" of 35 high-rises and several townhouses.

It allowed Leonard Murrell, 76, to buy a three-bedroom unit in 1971 for $5,000. The retired city Housing Authority manager had choice words for Beck.

"Mitchell-Lama gave me a chance to have a place to call my own. I was renting when I came to Co-Op City, and now I own. It's my piece of the pie," Murrell said.

"I came from poverty and worked my way up," he said, adding that it was unfair for a millionaire like Beck "to go on TV and hammer the program that gave me my shot."

"How dare he?" cried Councilman Jimmy Vacca (D-Bronx). "I'd like to know the last time Glenn Beck stepped into Co-Op City.

"Glenn Beck sitting in judgment of the people of Co-Op City is one of the most outrageous things I've ever heard."

Beck declined to comment yesterday.

Martin Prince, 55, who bought a three-bedroom Co-Op City apartment 18 years ago for $15,000, found Beck's on-air pot shot divisive "vitriolic garbage."

"He pits one person against another and that's not what this country is about and it's not what I'm about," Prince said. "It's Beck who's un-American."

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