Thursday, October 27, 2005

The Public Good and Ground Zero

In an editorial in today's NY Sun ("Discussing Development") the paper questions Mayor Mike's (and Deputy Dan's) sudden interest in guiding development at Ground Zero. They make one important point:
No one is saying that the mayor and Mr. Doctoroff don't have the city's best interest at heart. It's just hard for them, or for any politicians, to know what that interest is...
This just underscores what we have been stressing in a series of comments about the mayor's supposed freedom from "special interests." The putative freedom tells us nothing about Mike Bloomberg's ability, on any particular policy issue, to discern where the public good lies. The Sun, in fact feels that when it comes to real estate development, it is the private sector that should be given free reign to determine that the best course of action might be.

They could very well be right. But aren't these folks the "special interests" bogeymen that the mayor has been trying to frighten us with this close to Halloween? This one issue demonstrates how the whole question of special interests and the public good needs to be redefined so that the people are not so quickly misled by the phony dichotomies that seem to be so much in favor these days.