Good morning. We'll celebrate the birthday of a general in the Army who, despite his death in 1885, has been moving closer to a promotion. We will also examine Mayor Eric Adams’s decision to reverse a round cutbacks in public libraries.
Groucho Marx made audiences of quiz shows laugh regularly in the 1950s by asking contestants, who had missed the tougher questions: Who is buried Grant's tomb.
Answer: The same as before -- and as we said last year when we pointed out that one possible answer was a general not holding the Army's top rank.
Ulysses S. Grant is now one step closer to becoming a five-star General of the United States Army, surpassing all other generals. Grant was promoted posthumously by the $858 billion defense budget bill signed by President Biden in December.
Frank Scaturro is the president of Grant Monument Association. The group has been pushing for this designation for years. Scaturro hoped that it would be done by today, Grant’s 201st Birthday.
A Pentagon spokesperson said the Defense Department has nothing to report.
Scaturro replied that he was aware. He said that posthumous promotions were not the priority of presidents. "As long it takes."
Grant's fans, disappointed but not deterred, will celebrate Grant's birthday this morning at Grant's Tomb with the West Point Honor Guard. The historian Louis Picone will give a talk on Grant's Tomb, which is described in his book as being "larger than any other final resting place for an American person." The correct answer to Groucho's old joke was "nobody." Grant and Julia are not buried in the cemetery but instead entombed on a raised platform inside eight-and-a half-ton sarcophagi.
Grant will be the third former general to receive the title of general of the United States armies. The other two are George Washington and World War I hero John J. Pershing. Washington was not made a general until 179 after his death. Pershing became a general in the United States armies a year after World War I concluded.
Grant was the first four-star General in the United States in 1866. This was a year following the Civil War's end when Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox court house in Virginia. The Army had four five-star Generals in World War II, but none since 1981. It is unclear how many stars an army general would have.
Military historians note that Washington was promoted in 1978 with the provision that he will always be the Army’s highest ranking officer, regardless of how many generals the army names.
Scaturro (1998), author of "President Grant Reconsidered", said that the designation was fitting because Grant was, like Washington was a leader of one of America's 'wars if existential importance' - the Revolutionary War and Civil War. He said that without the accomplishments of either commander, 'the future of America as we know it' would have been in doubt.
Grant didn't get the promotion he was hoping for, but he did receive some recognition. Ohio declared Grant's birthday as a holiday.
He said: 'It is not a state holiday, in that the banks and shops are closed. But it is on their calendar of holidays. Talk about long overdue and the disparity in how Confederate leaders were remembered as opposed to Union leaders. Robert E. Lee was celebrated as a holiday by most, if not all, of the Confederacy and Kentucky. Grant's Birthday was celebrated by exactly zero states up until January 2nd, this year when Gov. Mike DeWine has signed it into law.
Expect mostly cloudy skies with temperatures in the mid-60s. In the evening, clouds continue and temperatures drop to the mid-40s.
The law is in effect until 18 May (Solemnity of the Ascension).
Adam Sullivan is a political strategist who works from a distance. He has a strong relationship with Governor. Kathy Hochul has grown to be the most influential political force in New York despite her Colorado residence.
Tax incentives for film: Hochul is pushing to increase incentives for film and TV productions from $700 million to $700 millions a year. This is despite critics who say that the program has been around for decades, but it's a bad deal.
Other local news
Adams reverses library budget cuts
You may still be able go to the library Saturdays and Sundays.
Mayor Eric Adams has canceled his latest round budget cuts to libraries. This would have forced many public libraries in New York City, including the New York Public Library System, to close their branches at weekends. Library leaders warned that the cuts would have a 'devastating effect', and library users complained that branch libraries were as important as subways and schools.
The mayor reversed his position in his latest executive budget proposal of $106.7 billion, which included a reduction in the planned cuts for several city agencies including the Fire Department. Sanitation Department, and Parks Department.
The presidents of New York's three public library systems, Linda Johnson, of the Brooklyn Public Library; Anthony Marx, of the New York Public Library; and Dennis Walcott, of the Queens Public Library, all agreed that libraries make the city stronger. Adams's decision rescinding the reductions was hailed as a'significant step towards restoring library funding' by the presidents of New York's three public libraries -- Linda Johnson, Anthony Marx and Dennis Walcott.
The libraries will still be hit with another 36 million dollars in budget cuts due to other austerity measures announced by City Hall.
Adams said that he will negotiate a budget for the municipal fiscal year, which begins in July. He has stated that he must make reductions across the board. He said that the budget must reflect urgent priorities, such as the cost to house the 57,000 migrants from the southern border who arrived in the past year. In the mayor's proposed budget, it was stated that services would cost $4.3 billion.
The mayor's proposed budget for revenue included an increase of $2.1 billion this fiscal year and $2.3 million next year due to better than expected growth in the personal income tax, sales tax, and business tax. Adams will have to negotiate a new budget with the City Council that takes into account wage increases for city employees. Adams and the union for police agreed on a contract of eight years on April 5, which calls for salary increases up to 4 percent per year.
Adrienne Adams, City Council Speaker, said that the budget is far from being settled. She said that the mayor's proposed executive budget still leaves libraries with significant service cuts. Agencies that provide essential services are also harmed, and programs that offer solutions to the most pressing problems of the city lack the necessary investments.
Mister Piano man is singing.
I will speak to you right now. Here.
Enjoy the rhymes.
Around you, eyebrows dance
to a jazzy piano lick,
The sudden jolt caused by a major change.
Secret yearnings awakened