Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Senate Stalemate Generates Good News

According to the Daily Politics, Mike Bloomberg is instituting a hiring freeze-and blaming it on warring state senators: "Mayor Bloomberg today again slammed the warring state senators for blowing the June 30 mayoral control deadline and is poised to announce their failure to pass the sales tax increase the city needs to balance its budget has pushed him to institute an immediate hiring freeze."

Well, hooray for the stalled senate; its gridlock has been able to achieve what Mike Bloomberg has been unable to do for seven years-begin to rein in the size of city government. Maybe the NY Post will get off of its mayoral butt mooching and take the time to offer kudos to the accidentally tax resistant body. Ah, we spoke too soon it appears.

Instead of seeing this as a golden opportunity to do more with less-or to simply let the shoppoers keep more of their own money, the Post uses this bogus freeze as another chance to praise Bloomberg and excoriate the state senators: "Mayor Mike yesterday ordered an immediate freeze of virtually all city hiring until the state Senate ends its unseemly civil war and passes legislation needed to keep Gotham on an even fiscal keel. Good for him. Sure, hiring freezes could escalate the tension. But that's a good thing. Something has to break the deadlock; fomenting a crisis could be just the ticket."

And no mention of the obvious tactics in play here. In typical city hall fashion, the proposed cuts targeted are for apple pie things like the 250 member police cadet class; as well as for 150 firefighters-all in an attempt to create a citizen outrage over the senate's stalemate. Nothing on all of the sundry extraneous crap that the city wastes the tax payers' money on; like housing the homeless in luxury digs.

Here's how Mayor Mike mischaracterizes the issue: "I urge Senators in both parties to put aside their political differences and approve the City’s revenue plan so we can move forward with providing the core services that New Yorkers rely on,” Bloomberg said in a public statement."
Core, as in, "rotten to..."

And, as the NY Times points out, the Bloomberg world view is on full display: "We’re losing roughly a couple million bucks a day,” he said. A statement that the mayor’s office issued later Monday said the city would resort to further spending reductions if the impasse continued." Of course, the city's loss in this case is the tax payers' gain-and Bloomberg effortlessly has glommed on to the concept that the city's lost revenue is his money.

But even Speaker Quinn, in as passive of voice as possible, gets the tactics and questions its necessity: "The Council speaker, Christine C. Quinn, said that “our first responders are literally paying the price” for the impasse and that “stopping the police class would be completely at the bottom of my list” if it had been left to her." Ouch! Don't hit the mayor that hard, Chris.

Peter Vallone is more on point: "Councilman Peter F. Vallone Jr., the chairman of the Public Safety Committee, said the freeze was painful and should not have been necessary. “Our first responders should never be first on the chopping block,” he said." But, he too, doesn 't want to pin this tale on the right donkey, saying: “Police recruits preparing to enter the academy this week are now being held hostage by the pathetic ineptitude in Albany.”

But maybe this will be the start of a beneficent trend; and the public, if not certain supine elected officials, will come to realize that the continual assault on their wallets isn't made necessary by the need to preserve, "essential services." And another potential collateral benefit here, is that New Yorkers can be made more aware of Bloomberg's expansionist philosophy; a tax and spend approach to governance that has dug the city into the deep hole that it currently finds itself in.