Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Bloomberg's Emergency Service

A pleading Greg David opined in Crain's yesterday that Mayor Mike Bloomberg needs to step up and rescue Wal-Mart should, as we have commented already, a concerted effort is launched to defeat the Walmonster: "The history goes like this: When the issue of Walmart's interest in New York first arose early in his tenure as mayor, Michael Bloomberg said he didn't think it was a good idea for the city to choose which retailers could operate here. Then he went silent and his administration stood by while developers were forced to promise not to lease space to Walmart to win City Council approval of their projects."

But, according to David, Bloomberg just has to find his voice on this issue: "Now, as outlined in Crain's, Walmart is eying an "as of right" opening at Gateway Center. That won't diminish the opposition from the unions and their allies, because they know the Walmart store will be a huge success with people needing jobs, which are far better than most people think, and with consumers hungry for the value it provides. Walmart can't make that case alone. The mayor will have to use his bully pulpit to give credibility to the pro-Walmart case, as he did last October."

Yes, the bully and his pulpit-and maybe while he's making the case for a traffic nightmare on the Belt Parkway and in East New York, he can wax eloquently about all he's doing to insure that, by 2030, NYC resembles an urban version of Green Acres. Put simply, Wal-Mart and sustainable development are a contradiction in terms. The Walmonster will subsume area small businesses and further erode the quality of life all over South Brooklyn.

But by all means we look forward to the mayor, as eloquent as he is, making the case why Wal-Mart and Gateway are perfect together. Something which we believe makes as much sense as one of the giant retailer's store sites being built in close proximity to the Bloomberg manse in Bermuda.