A blog about the mob....
Cosa Nostra News offers news on current events, as well as historical stories and features.
In terms of the Mafia niche-news website category, Cosa Nostra News is no. 1 in the U.S. and in the world, according to verifiable Alexa data. (We even, technically, beat the big guy, you know.)
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"The inescapable hurry of the press inevitably means a certain degree of superficiality. It is neither within our power nor our province to be ultimately profound. We write 365 days a year the first rough draft of history, and that is a very great task."
"The first messenger, that gave notice of Lucullus' coming was so far from pleasing Tigranes that, he had his head cut off for his pains; and no man dared to bring further information. Without any intelligence at all, Tigranes sat while war was already blazing around him, giving ear only to those who flattered him"....
First "shooting the messenger" citing,
(The name is an invented pseudonym. I'm a journalist with 20-plus years of professional experience. I have bachelor's degree in communications specializing in print journalism.)
Cosa Nostra News is a one-man operation. I write everything, from content to HTML, including trying to follow Google's evolving Adsense policies, and implementing the necessary revisions. I don't have even a copy editor; hence, I revise, revise and revise, even after publication. If I add more information, I note it in the text -- see here). I have two great guest contributors, named below, and am always interested in finding guest contributors. (If you're a graphic artist, I could use a great, kick-ass logo "on the arm" for now. But you'd be in my "people I owe" book, stored on the bedside table.)
The blogger's handbook says "tell your readers about yourself -- humanize!" Mine is not a typical bio however, as I'm not married with two kids and I don't love skydiving and am not a wine connoisseur. But let's just dive in! So here we go!
Power, corruption and man's darker nature are topics of historical interest to me. The Mafia is simply a specific manifestation. If I were to start another niche blog, it likely would be about Hitler and the Third Reich, perhaps the ultimate "specific manifestation". (But truly I wouldn't blog about Nazis; I'd choose a mainstream topic.) Now I don't mean to imply similarities. I view the Mafia as nothing more than an enigmatic, inevitable underside of capitalism. Organized crime was bound to occur: Nature abhors a vacuum -- and there's a lust for larceny in every man's heart. On the spectrum of evil, say a scale ranging from one to 10, with evil progressing exponentially the higher the number, I'd put the Nazis at 12 and the Mafia at 2; some specific mobsters maybe at 3.
Moving on, the greatest writers, in my opinion, are Vladimir Nabokov, Gore Vidal, Thomas Ligotti, Edgar Allan Poe, HP Lovecraft, Gay Talese (though ironically I can't stand his Bonanno book; how he could spend so many years with Bill and get so much wrong is a ceaseless mystery to me) and others I'm too lazy to think of now. I love Tom Wolfe's fiction: Bonfire of the Vanities is a masterpiece, A Man in Full is genius. If you want to know what hell is really like, seriously, I mean viscerally and intellectually and psychologically, read Flann O'Brien's The Third Policeman. (Okay, I should add Stephen King to the list; he's where I picked up my nasty habit for italicizing words.)
Jerry Capeci of Gangland News is the journalist who most inspired me. He's a virtuoso in terms of craftsmanship. And he has FBI sources and (I'd guess) "friends" in the Southern District that give him the ingredients to create digital magic each week. George Anastasia I consider similarly, though I discovered Mr. Anastasia much later in life.)
I am just a guy who reads a lot....
I am a snob about one thing: coffee. I require several cups of good coffee every morning. I prefer dark roasts and when I can afford it, I buy it by the bean (online or at Starbucks) and freshly grind it at 5 am, my favorite time to rise. In terms of a social life, I don't have one. I rarely go out these days. I have never been married and have no kids.
I live a low-profile life (what other kind is there?) outside New York City on Long Island. I was identified exactly once in public as "Ed Scarpo". At my local 24-hour newsstand a white male, early 20s, approached and said, "I know you....I know I know you." I looked back at him wearing the most quizzical expression I could conjure and said, "I know I don't know you." Eventually I mentioned a blog, the topic of organized crime, and he smiled, nodded his head and shook my hand. All I was thinking was: why couldn't a woman have recognized me? (Sudden memory: An achingly beautiful woman once approached me on a subway platform and told me I looked like Michael Keaton. That was back in the 1990s, and I was so shocked, she walked off before I could hit on her. Why do I write this stuff?)
Nick Christophers, writer/artist and Mob Candy editor, you can check out his website here.
Tony Sokol, the "Gangster Geek" at Den of Geek, also writes for The Chiseler, KpopStarz.com, and hypnocloud.com. He has had over 20 plays produced in NYC, including Vampyr Theatre and the rock opera “AssassiNation: We Killed JFK.” He appeared on the Joan Rivers (TV) Show, Strange Universe and Britain’s “The Girlie Show.” Read his blog here.
Stories written by Nick and Tony are given special bylines in the text at the top.
This website may contain affiliate marketing links, which means we may get paid a commission on sales of some products or services that appear in content.
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History of Cosa Nostra
Cosa Nostra (not La Cosa Nostra or LCN as the FBI calls it) is the name used to describe the Italian-American Mafia. Think about it: "Our thing", not "the our thing".
(And it's Luchese, not Lucchese.)
Famous turncoat Joseph "Cago" Valachi was the first to voice the term publicly although the FBI had known of it earlier (incorrectly, though, believing the group called itself La Causa Nostra. Valachi, actually, was tricked into offering the FBI the correct name, by CIA cold warriors using the same methods used when interrogating KGB spies.)
(On tapes John Gotti also referred to it as Cosa Nostra. "A Cosa Nostra til I die... a Cosa Nostra, a Cosa Nostra... ")
Cosa Nostra News covers America's Cosa Nostra. But we also cover the Sicilian Cosa Nostra, the "grandfather" of America's Cosa Nostra. We also report on the Cosa Nostra in Canada, as well as the Calabrian Mafia that rose alongside it.
We also cover the "Mafias" that originated on the Italian mainland: the Ndrangheta, formed in Calabria in Southern Italy, and the Camorra, which was founded near Naples.
There's also a fourth Mafia, too, a spinoff faction of the Camorra, based in Apulia in southern Italy, called the Sacra Corona Unita.
Unlike in America, where the Cosa Nostra dominates, Canada actually has two primary Mafia groups: the Cosa Nostra and Ndrangheta, both of which established themselves there separately. The groups commonly work together, though both have been known to split into factions and become adversaries. Canadian Cosa Nostra boss Vito Rizzuto, called the Canadian John Gotti until his death at the end of 2013, probably was the most well-known member of Canada's Mafia. He is believed to have been waging a war against factions of the Ndrangheta in recent years, which is likely continuing now.
Rizzuto was a made member of the Bonanno family, but is believed to have established his independence, formally or informally, sometime in the 1980s following a falling out with then-Bonanno boss Joseph Massino. Search this site; there are many stories about Rizzuto.
If you're looking for a writer or someone with my skills and experience, please contact me via email at
If you're interested in interviewing me or want access to any of the people I've interviewed, please email me, as well.
All work originally written for this site is copyrighted; if material is quoted from this site, please include proper attribution and a "live" link to the material in question, as is our practice when sourcing information.
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