Thursday, February 03, 2011

One City, One Standard: The Double Standard

Can you believe the chutzpah of Mike Bloomberg? According to City Room the mayor is actually dressing down workers for, we kid you not, failing to show up in a snowstorm when they were told to stay home: "Well, that didn’t take long. After a short, uncharacteristic stretch of empathy and contrition from New York City’s chief executive following the Blizzard Brouhaha, the moody mayor re-emerged on Wednesday morning, ready to sass. The setting was the Blue Room at City Hall, where Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg was asked why municipal employees were being penalized for not showing up to work during a snow storm last week — even though the city instructed most of them to stay home."

This, from Bermuda Bloomberg? But the mayor, who has no sense of humility to worry about its loss, adds insult to injury: "Sympathetic he was not. “I don’t know how you were brought up, I was always brought up that you had an obligation to work,” he told an unlucky reporter who had pressed him about the issue. “Maybe it’s different in your world,” the mayor added, pungently."

It seems that the mayor believes that the workers should have realized they should report to work when the weather steadily improved during the day-counseling that they should have looked out the window: "Mr. Bloomberg, apparently prepped for this line of questions, acknowledged that, yes, the forecast last Thursday was grim when he told nonemergency workers to take the day off. But the weather steadily improved that morning, he said, and the workers’ instinct should have been to rush into the office, despite his standing order that they stay off the roads and despite, well, human nature. “When you look out the window and it’s not as bad as you thought it was going to be, maybe a bell should go off and say, ‘Hey, maybe I can get to work today,’ ” the mayor said."

Just like when Bloomberg looked out the window Christmas morning in Bermuda, and seeing the sun shining with temps in the high seventies, decided that there was no need for him to show up-or to call any snow emergency. This is a guy who is quintessentially arrogant, and the city council should get with the Vallone ankle monitor bill so all New Yorkers can track the dude's whereabouts when he leaves town-as he frequently does.

It's way past time for the legislature to reassert its prerogatives-and let the mayor know that it's no longer his definition of what's right that holds sway with New Yorkers.