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Abe Hirschfeld
Abe Hirschfeld’s New Vision
Takes Flight in Cyberspace


BRAHAM HIRSCHFELD, at a sprightly 82, is ready to make history again. He made his mark many times over with his commercial innovations buttressed by unique business acumen. He told me of his new initiative during a visit to his temporary home in the Catskills.

His current abode happens to be the Sullivan Correctional Facility in Fallsburg, N.Y.

As I approached the mammoth building, surrounded by a gleaming silver chain-link fence topped with coiled barbed wire, I took a picture of the imposing structure with my small digital camera.

Abe Hirschfeld is incarcerated at Sullivan Correction
Facility in Fallsburg, NY.

I didn’t think anyone would notice.

There was an observation tower, so I must have been in the cross hairs of binoculars trained on every approaching car. Immediately a uniformed corrections officer drove up demanding to know if I had authorization to photograph.

I said no, and put the camera in the trunk. Thank goodness, that was that.

Getting inside

FTER processing in the reception bunker, a burly guard escorted me across a small plaza into the main fortress.  We took an elevator up one flight. I turned toward an open corridor, and the guard bellowed, “You don’t want to go there. You won’t get out.”

Abe Primed to Debut
iUSATimes  Webzine

Abe Hirschfeld is laying the
groundwork for a new
publication on the Internet.
The former publisher of the
New York Post named his
global magazine
iUSATimes.com. He is
preparing to launch this

He welcomes inquiries from
reporters and columnists,
critics and reviewers,
interested in joining the

Send resumes to
iUSATimes.com, 328 E. 61st
St., New York NY 10021. No
phone calls or personal visits
at this time.

I quickly backtracked.

“You don’t look good in green,” he added sympathetically.

I turned and faced a two-way mirrored wall. A steel door began to slide slowly and noisily. Ahead was the visiting room.

A guard sat at a desk against the wall, facing some 20 small wooden tables arranged in rows. Next to him was a table holding several holy books, including the New Testament and the Koran in Arabic and English editions. On the other side stood a bank of vending machines, a microwave and a trashcan.

High spirits

waited ten minutes, till the noon head count was completed. A door on the far left opened. Hirschfeld came in, dressed in an open white shirt, green slacks and white sneakers. He looked lean (having shed maybe 50 pounds), with reddish blond thinning hair, and scruffy white beard. Distinguished looking, really.

Abe at Wit’s End

Who is smart? He who knows
that he does not know.

Howie would buy a truckload
of melons at a dollar apiece and
sell them at a dollar each. He
complained he couldn’t make a
living. “I have a solution for you,”
his friend said. “Great!” Howie
said. “Now I’ll be able to feed
my family. What should I do?”
His friend said, “Howie, what
you should do is buy a bigger

Why do they say shalom in
Israel when they say hello and
goodbye? Because in Israel
they never know when they’re
coming or going.

Why do they have such fights
in the Knesset, but for the
national anthem they stay in their
seats? Because they don’t want
anybody to take away their chairs.

His spirits are high, his face is cheerful, and he exudes a positive air. After all, he is quite convinced of his innocence of the charge that brought him to this place – plotting to slay his longtime partner, Stanley Stahl, who subsequently died on his own, due to a stroke.

For that alleged plot, which Hirschfeld said was cooked up by such enemies as dishonest prosecutors, malevolent employees and unscrupulous judges, he is serving 1 to 3 years in this upstate prison.

He isn’t worried. His disposition is exuberant. He doesn’t allow anything to bring him down. That is why he has always been on top.

Notable achievements

URING our two-hour meeting, Hirschfeld summarized the historical accomplishments by some of America’s geniuses and innovators, climaxing with his personal vision for a grand future. Each one put an end to a depression or recession in his lifetime.

Henry Ford licked a national depression by creating an assembly line of Model-T Fords. He also cited Walt Disney for expanding the world of entertainment and Sony’s Morita for the proliferation of electronics.

Harry Truman established the FHA, which brought affordable housing to the average American.

Hirschfeld invented the magnetic door for refrigerators.

Hirschfeld created open air parking garages, a novel concept, which gave rise to shopping centers and extended the highway pattern across the country. “Before that,” he says, “we had 1 car for 3 or 4 families. Today we have 3 or 4 cars for each family.”

Hirschfeld says by building the Vertical Club in Manhattan, he sparked the health fitness craze.

Bill Gates, another mental giant, came up with software that fueled the Internet, changing the face of the world, not to mention the U.S.

In the ‘90s, during another economic glitch, Wall Street was gutted with buildings that were becoming white elephants. Hirschfeld showed how to renew the street by turning these empty behemoths into profitable condos for an emerging neighborhood.

Another downturn in American life came in the late ‘60s when every TV was a Japanese product. “We were in bad shape. Japan dominated our economy. Along came Lee Iacocca with a new design for a car and a simple, practical idea to give cash back on the purchase of every auto.”

To counter a recession in contemporary society, Hirschfeld has a plan that he guarantees “will reduce the divorce rate in the country. I want to bring back the traditional role of the family, relieve misunderstandings, and reestablish harmonious relationships.”

Ready for his close-up…again

fter spending two hours with Hirschfeld, I left convinced that if only the establishment would listen, instead of mocking, they would learn some new ways to mend the old problems afflicting this country.

Listen to him: “Lowering taxes is beneficial. Lowering the prime rate is fine. But what good is it to the unemployed person who has no money?”

This summer Hirschfeld plans to make news again. Once he saved the New York Post from oblivion by buying the paper when no one else wanted it. He held on to it for little more than two weeks when the establishment wrested the prize from his hands.

Today he is poised once again to surprise the public. He relishes the thought of working in journalism afresh. This time as founder of a unique magazine – on the Internet.

To be called iUSATimes.com, the webzine will be a daily news publication. Launch is planned for late summer. Stay tuned.

When I left I was again escorted across the neatly kept landscaping, surrounded by the razor-ribbon security fence, to the processing building, which served as the exit point.

“How is Hirschfeld?” the uniformed guard walking me asked. “How’s he feeling today?”

Hirschfeld has the ear of his fellow inmates, and the respect of his custodians.


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