It's one thing to chide Bill Thompson's auditing of the DOE for its politicized aroma-as the NY Post and the NY Daily News both do. It's quite another thing to hang like school girls on every pronouncement that is emitted from the educational bureaucracy; a form of slavishness that is unbecoming for seasoned journalists.
Here's the Post's critique-and we're not bemused by the paper's blatant partisan failure to even cover the comptroller's audit in its news section: "Tuesday, he tried to cast doubt on city claims that graduation rates have risen; yesterday, he bashed testing methods. The city, Thompson says, "created an environment that both encourages cheating and allows the mayor to claim achievements that cannot be verified." Yet none of the attacks is backed up."
Unlike the mayor's official announcements and endless Big Lie propaganda campaign that the Post editors fawn over; this jaundiced narrative takes on the form of Papal infallibility for the Postmortems. Which is why we have suggested that the entire regime be put under the scrutiny of an Inspector General who could do what the Post-and we'll get to the News in just a bit-chooses not to do. Nothing must get in the way of its canonization of Mike Bloomberg.
Which brings us to the News-and at least this paper actually had the menschlichkeit to cover the story. The News awards Thompson its coveted Knucklehead prize for his audit of the DOE: "For being dumb enough to believe he could bamboozle New Yorkers with the most cynically fabricated accusations in many a political season ...For being foolish enough to think he could inject life into his dying-quail mayoral campaign by writing fictional press releases ...For being so out of touch as to assume no one would notice gross factual misrepresentations by the city's chief fiscal officer ..."
When we started to read this proclamation we first thought that it was the opening salvo of an incisive self criticism-because the words could be more aptly applied to the News' missives on behalf of mayoral control; especially the, "For being dumb enough to believe he could bamboozle New Yorkers..."
From the very start of the paper's vigorous promotion of mayoral control-starting about the same time the Morticia colluded with his richer colleague on overturning the popular will-the paper has eschewed analysis for flackery. In fact, given the P. T. Barnum nature of the faux coverage of the issue we are awarding the News the Alliance's first Muñeco Award-given to the person or business that most exemplifies sycophancy-and raises the behavior to its highest art form.
The reality here is that there is a great deal of smoke and mirrors in the Klein school regime-and the need for an independent audit is a compelling one; particularly when sycophants and toadies are breeding like rabbits in the city's news rooms. So, before we enshrine Mike Bloomberg as our Educator-in-Chief, let's get an informed second opinion; something we're as likely to get from the Post and the News as a critique of Kim Jong-il in a North Korean daily.