Angry New Yorker

Tuesday, January 11, 2005
The Mayor Launches Into Stand-Up Comedy

Photo of Mayor Bloomberg
Photo: 2004 State of the City Address

2005 "State of the City" Address
Jan. 11, 2005 - Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg delivered the 2005 State of the City Address at Hostos Community College, in the Bronx.
arrowRead the address

But seriously, although the Mayor did a pretty good job in this address, compared to Pataki's anemic State of the State, there was certainly enough comedy here, such as the line that Bloomberg "cut City spending by more than $3 billion" -- really? I'd like to see those cuts listed, Mayor.

And for the love of God, why do politicans feel a need to lapse into Spanish, as if that somehow "connects" them to the many Hispanics here? I'd feel rather insulted, actually, if the President, Governor or Mayor felt he needed to lapse into my ancestral language -- it's like a pat on the head to a small boy. But the mayor went ahead and did it anyway:

His name is Tomas Vallejo. He’s a mail clerk at John Jay College. With the help of our administration’s down payment assistance program, he just bought his first home in Cypress Hills.

Tomas, bienvenidos al sueño Americano.

And what about this piece of prime pablum:

Every New Yorker deserves a good home – and that includes the one out of every 20 New Yorkers who live in public housing.
Oh? So, even if you're a lazy, no-goodnick, with no job skills, can't read English, have a drug problem, beat your wife and kids, and your body odor could kill a horse you deserve a good home simply because you're on this earth? Spare me the socialist tripe, Mayor.

UPDATE: Steven Malanga takes Bloomberg to the woodshed for a severe paddling in his essay in the New York Post, Off and Running, (Jan. 12, 2005) available here. He's dead on, my comments above that "the Mayor did a pretty good job in this address" was only meant to highlight how absolutely atrocious the Governor's State of the State address was.
Malanga's observation that

His agenda sounded like that of any number of big city mayors — especially those of a generation ago — who mistakenly think that government is the key to expanding opportunity for citizens.
is blistering. Bloomberg's gone over and drunk the Koolaid, and Malange notes further:

Except for a brief reference to his plans for another homeowners tax rebate, in yesterday's speech Bloomberg made no mention of any efforts to restrain or cut the city's job-smothering taxes. While enunciating his grand plans for government-subsidized housing and other projects, he made no reference to the city's yawning budget deficit or its soaring spending, which will have a far greater effect on New York's business environment than any job-training programs or city-sponsored diversity efforts.

[A]s the mayor — now an all-too-typical-sounding municipal politician — heads into his re-election campaign amid approval ratings that are stubbornly stuck under 50 percent, maybe he should remember what got him elected in the first place. Otherwise, it might be a very long campaign season for the former businessman-turned-mayor.

UPDATE II: Andrea Peyser takes Blooomberg to task, too, in HE'D BE A GREAT MAYOR - OF FANTASYLAND, available here. The money quote:

The man who three years ago sold himself as the city's savior, only to betray even his most ardent fans with punishing tax hikes is now trying to sell us the fantasy that he's fixed everything worth fixing around here.

I would love to visit this gorgeous oasis called New York. In halting and occasionally mangled terms, he painted a picture of this city as a land where public schools are all but fixed, businesses are free to flourish, and — get this — you will get a tax break.
* * *
If the mayor was honest he would have said something like this:

"I'm sorry. I screwed up by bringing back the sales tax on clothing under $110 — I don't own any, you see. And now Albany likes that money. I'm sorry I was too busy sucking up to Gov. Pataki during his re-election bid. Now it's too late to demand he give this city some of our tax money back, maybe impose a commuter tax.

"I'm sorry I'm such a wimp I couldn't squeeze a dollar from the unions.

"But hey — if you don't re-elect me, I give you this three-word curse: Mayor Freddy Ferrer.

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