Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Hail Caeser!

As expected Mayor Mike coasted to an easy victory yesterday by beating up on a hapless Freddy Ferrer. The post-mortems are coming fast and furious and some are downright funny. Taking the prize for fulsomeness and unwitting high comedy is Michael Goodwin's panegyric on the mayor in today's News.

Goodwin, echoing the Times editorial canonization of Bloomberg, sees potential greatness ahead and urges the mayor to go for it. What this greatness consists of, however, is never fully spelled out and Goodwin lapses into a vague kind of prose about reaching out to all the city's neighborhoods and ethnic groups as if that constitutes some kind of compelling vision. Does he really want our CEO mayor to resurrect the "gorgeous mosaic" rhetoric of David Dinkins?

What's missing in the Goodwin "analysis" is any larger concepts about governance that might prove useful in an attempt by the mayor to actually achieve greatness. Even on education, where the mayor gets uniformly high marks on what we believe are rather meager preliminary results, its hard to see how the managerially competent mayor is going to transcend the intractable problems that the system has inherited (we'd love to see what Andrew Wolfe has to say on this because he has been the most trenchant and persuasive critics we have in this area).

In the end Goodwin talks about the subways and security as the mayor's potential path to greatness. We can't really comment on this because much of what he says on the subject simply makes little sense. Now maybe if he actually builds a couple of new subway lines...