Wednesday, October 01, 2008

The Times They are a Changing

After publicly opposing any legislative over turning of term limits, the NY Times has had a change of heart. And guess what, it is a principled re-evaluation that has absolutely nothing to do with the third term fate of Mike Bloomberg. You're skeptical? You mean that you can't you feel the sincerity oozing out from the following?:

"Partly for this reason, and partly to extend their own political careers, a majority of City Council members are thinking about amending the city law to allow elected officials to serve three consecutive terms instead of two. That would permit Mayor Michael Bloomberg to run again in 2009 and could also prolong the service of council members and other senior elected officials. Mr. Bloomberg, who is expected to announce on Thursday that he will seek a third term if he can, likes the idea a lot.

We do, too. But we would go further and ask the Council to abolish term limits altogether — not to serve any individual’s political career but to serve the larger cause of democracy."

Glory, Glory, Hallelujah! And what a load of crap! The truth certainly doesn't come marching on. Because, if this were only about an editorial change of heart, would the Times say this?: "Most places that are trying to relax term limits are likely to do so via the ballot box, with several referendums due in November. There is a chance that a vote on the issue could be organized early next year in New York in conjunction with special elections to the City Council. But such elections do not attract many voters. In the end, a vote by the Council is probably the most democratic way to address the matter."

But what's the hurry here, if all this doesn't involve the future of our royal gremlin? The most democratic thing is to place the measure on next year's November ballot. The only reason for expediting the change is to enable Bloomberg's self-perpetuation; which makes Pinch Sulzberger the latest billionaire to rally behind their well-heeled brother.

Make no mistake, however, this has absolutely nothing to do with democracy or the public interest; and the Times should be ashamed of this kind of editorial dishonesty. At least the other papers are plain spoken in their special pleading-the Times' sophistry should fool no one.