Friday, February 08, 2008

Calling the Kettle Black

In what amounts to the absolute height of both arrogance and hypocrisy Mayor Mike is excoriating the real estate industry-and all of those electeds that are soliciting support from that quarter. As the NY Times writes this morning: "In a rare public scolding of an industry that is friendly with his administration, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg criticized real estate companies on Thursday, saying it appears they are trying to buy influence in the 2009 mayoral campaign."

So, let's get this straight. The guy who essentially bought two elections now objects to others trying to gain influence on behalf of their businesses-and these others' total contribution amounts to no more than 20% of what the mayor spent on his own re-election. In Liz's Daily News blog it gets even better: "Bloomberg told WABC-AM's John Gambling that he doesn't believe any administration has been more "pro-development than we have," adding:
"We have gotten an enormous amount of construction going in this city. We've rezoned a sixth of the city. We're record number of houses and office buildings and all of that sort of stuff. And in order to get permits or to get contracts you didn't have to give any money to the city, we did it strictly, or to any of the political candidates or the mayor, me. We did it strictly on the merits and that's the way it should be."

Is this guy serious? Hasn't he followed the exploits of Deputy Dan and Steve Ross of Related? What emerges here is exactly what we've been saying all along: the "special interests" rap is little more than a red herring, especially when you have a mayor who, as he himself says, basically represents the governing class-or the permanent government, if you will-and doesn't need a nickel in tribute to slavishly promote its agenda.

And when the mayor's economic development agenda-led by the best and the brightest from the big investment houses-either ignores or destroys local small business Mike doesn't see the irony because, like Plato's philosopher king, he too far removed from our city's "cave dwellers." That anyone who spends $180 million to purchase an office can shamelessly critique "pay for play" is beyond us; and we're wondering when the press will take a serious look at this hypocrisy.

As we've said before, the mayor has been promoting a special interest for six years: his own self-aggrandizement. Unencumbered by "tawdry" (those that are not Mike himself) special interests he plows ahead, making decisions based upon his own father knows best class prism-which amounts to little else but an ideological prison.