Friday, January 04, 2008

Sharpton and Bloomberg

Just when we'd thought that we'd seen everything, we picked up the NY Daily News this morning to discover that the Bloomberg boomlet had another fan: the Reverend Al Sharpton. And wouldn't you know, Reverend Al is on the same page as we are-a supporter of the chaos theory of politics.

Sharpton, in speculating about the outcome of next week's greybeard summit told the News readers: "As one who has employed shock therapy on occasion to get the system to work, I support such a meeting - and am keenly interested in what a Bloomberg candidacy would mean for America. If I were his adviser (which I am not), I would urge him to base the core of his domestic platform on the notion that education is the civil rights issue for the 21st century, because without it, one cannot pursue the American Dream."

What we can't quite figure out here is what the backstory is. We do know that, while shock therapy is a Sharpton calling card, this can't be the whole story by any means. If Al's writing this kind of Op-ed than it means that there's something in it for Al. Our supposition is that chaos here is directed at one Barack Obama, someone who's rapidly speeding the Reverend off to obsolescence. The threat of a Bloomberg candidacy would, if Obama is the nominee-or even if he's in striking distance-make the Sharpton mantra that much more relevant.

Certainly the education issue is a red herring here since Sharpton has never publicly to our knowledge heaped any praise on Bloomberg for his putative reforms in this area. And, as we have commented before, the Reverend is treading on thin ice if he wants to go skating on the education rink with the mayor.

Which doesn't stop the NY Sun from continuing to promote the mayor for what we feel are dubious reasons-particularly its support in today's editorial of a "pro growth" policy on immigration. And the paper's reporting on Doug Schoen's musings about the potential success of a third part effort strikes us as simply special pleading by the paper.

But continue to plead by all means. Whether it's chaos or shock therapy the Bloomberg run would be smashing good fun for us all-and it just might give us the opportunity to peak behind the curtain to see how little the Wizard of NYC really is.