We have decided to suspend work on this site in favor of devoting all our energies to www.bloombergwatch.com.
Michael Bloomberg is seeking a third term as mayor of New York after engineering a city council override of the two-term limit on New York City elected officials, a limit imposed by public referenda twice. He has spent hundreds of millions on gaining and holding office. He has bought — or at least rented — two political parties, the Republican Party and the Independence Party, and he has hired a large group of Democratic consultants to help him promote his image as a man of the people—“Just Mike.”
If he succeeds, he will have established a pernicious precedent for other billionaires who tend to view elections as expensive inconveniences. Mainstream newspapers talk of an Albany coup financed and engineered by another billionaire, Tom Golisano, but they say little about City Hall. The newspapers receive various favors from the political establishment, including multimillion dollar tax breaks, and are very much part of the problem.
The city council speaker who led the override controlled a multimillion dollar slush fund that she doled out to cement her political power. When it was discovered that the organizations in whose name the monies were held did not even exist, Bloomberg’s Department of Investigations launched an investigation. More than a year later, it is still “investigating.” The city and state are in the grip of a political crowd, which rivals in its corruption and disdain for citizens the worst malefactors of the Boss Tweed era.
We think it’s important, therefore, for ordinary citizens to do what we can to defeat Michael Bloomberg and his cronies. It is the only way for voters to regain some respect and some sort of voice in the city’s affairs.
We will pick up Hacks and Flacks after the November election.