November 2, 2009 @ 8:49 pm
Via Pareene and Gawker:
Tomorrow is Election Day! You will probably not vote, because there are no contested races for anything important in 90% of the nation. But if you are a New Yorker, we have one message: don’t vote for Michael Bloomberg.
You know those idiots who don’t know anything about politics but think it sounds smart to say “I am a social liberal and an economic conservative?” Bloomberg is the candidate for them, if they love a liberal nanny state and a conservative religious fervor for the eternal goodness of private enterprise.
For all the talk of Bloomberg the power-player who at least gets things done without worrying about the unions and special interests, he’s been unable to win any political battle with anyone he couldn’t literally buy off. Like Sheldon Silver, who (thankfully) killed the West Side Stadium and (annoyingly) ended all that “Congestion Pricing” talk. And those unions and special interests were just bought off, which worked fine back when the boom whose end Bloomberg never saw coming was in full swing.
And about that stadium: what the fuck was that? And the Olympics thing? After bitching about Giuliani’s disgraceful subsidizing of the fucking Yankees, Bloomberg both turns around completely on that particular issue and attempts to build the fucking Jets a stadium, so that New York could get an Olympics that it did not want. And that failed, and everyone forgot about it. Meanwhile: 40,000 people in shelters! Bloomberg could personally buy every single one of those people an apartment in a vacant Williamsburg luxury condo building and still have enough left over to bribe a City Council member into supporting his fifth term.
And those luxury Williamsbug condo buildings, by the way, that stand vacant? Yes, well, that was part of this brilliant plan to utilize rezoning to spur the free market (which always allocates resources more efficiently than anything else in the history of civilization but sometimes it needs government help, like with tax breaks and stuff) to create affordable housing all over the waterfront. This did not work, as developers decided to just not bother to build all those affordable housing units they were supposed to build. More than 2,200 promised new affordable apartments in Williamsburg and Greenpoint have turned out to be 768, 20 percent of which are renovations of apartments that were already affordable. There are lots more of these stories.
His record on housing, like his record on nearly everything having to do with the outer boroughs and poverty and human beings who make less than $100,000 a year, has been a ridiculous disgrace. His entire philosophy of development solving everything turned out to be precisely, 100% wrong, and suddenly the city itself was driving the real estate boom, driving up land prices to absurd levels across the boroughs and tearing down neighborhoods only to replace them with vacant lots and half-filled cheaply built hideous high-rises once the bottom fell out of the City Hall-inflated market. But hey, we got the High Line and 311! So you can sleep in that fancy park while you call 311 asking if there is room in a shelter because you can no longer afford your home.
Eight years into the Bloomberg administration, Ground Zero is a still a hole that everyone continues fighting about.
The MTA has raised fares while cutting service (without actually cutting service, officially—it’s just that whatever line you happen to ride is suddenly experiencing a whole lot of track work every single goddamn weekend).
The Gays: still not married! And also a lot of them are getting beaten up on the streets these days for some reason?
Bloomberg is also the beneficiary of the most friendly news coverage of any big city mayor in the nation. Easily. It helps that, you know, he is a media mogul, himself, and he is good, close, personal friends with the three publishers who run the newspapers that went after each one of his predecessors for shit they’ve let slide under this mayor, because they know he’s a good, decent guy, at heart, and the only one who can Fix New York, because of his Money.
Let’s talk about the cops, for a second: they are still operating under Giuliani levels of complete disregard for the law. They are getting drunk and running people over and shooting unarmed black people and sodomizing people in subway stations. The Civilian Complaint Review Board has become a joke, unless your case gets a lot of publicity. There’s obviously no accountability, whatsoever, and no attempt to recruit and train more cops from the communities they actually police. The NYPD remains, primarily, the home of roided-out white people from outside the city with a great deal of contempt for civil liberties. The Mayor always sounds properly upset when some of them rape someone, but he’s never done a damn thing to rein them in or change the culture.
What he has done is Keep Us Safe by never once giving a shit about Civil Liberties. The cops stop and frisk thousands more people every year, your 4th Amendment rights do not apply in the Subway system, and expensive and completely ineffective new rings of cameras are going up across Manhattan.
Bloomberg deserves to be run out of town on an inadequately funded public rail line for the 2004 GOP convention alone. Remember that ridiculous farce? No, of course not, no one does, besides the thousands of people improperly spied on, arrested, harassed, and detained by the NYPD. All of this was completely illegal. No heads rolled.
One more special bonus factoid: New York leads the world in marijuana arrests! Specifically, marijuana arrests of black people!
And he is personally a jerk. He is a thin-skinned, unpleasant, sanctimonious asshole. His company is being sued for a culture of sexual discrimination that plaintiffs say Bloomberg himself contributed to. He is a tremendous dick to reporters whenever he gets cranky. He is fucking race-baiting with Rudy Giuliani again, because why not?
He has been a shitty mayor and he does not deserve the support of anyone who claims to be a liberal. Though what all of his most destructive missteps as mayor have in common is that they do not in any way upset or inconvenience the well-off self-professed liberals who support him. Besides maybe a couple Critical Mass riders arrested in illegal sweeps. (Though he sure does like bike lanes, so it’s a wash, right?)
We cannot encourage you to vote for the Democrat in the race, because even we still aren’t sure if we’ll go for him or the much more delightful Billy Talen. Just don’t fucking vote for Michael Bloomberg.
Send an email to Alex Pareene, the author of this post, at firstname.lastname@example.org