Prime Minister Winston Churchill didn't win reelection after World War II even though he was seen as a successful war hero. Indeed because the war was no longer an issue England had no more use for Churchill and went on to elect Labour's Clement Attlee in his stead.
Mayor Bloomberg has been our mayor since 2002 and has presided over 2 big recessions - one from
the dot com bust exacerbated by the attack on 9/11, 2001 and then the debt/mortgage crisis that exploded in 2008. NY city survived both and during the latter faired much better than the rest of the country. Though a Republican administration and Fed policy had much to do with steering the ship to safety in the form of tax cuts and lower interest rates, Mayor Bloomberg certainly should get a fair share
of the credit as well.
Bloomberg is far from perfect. Many small businesses are hurting from over regulation and confiscatory fines, however there is no denying that fiscally the city is doing fine; total NY city tax revenue since 2003 is up 83%. Crime statistics for the city are good as well; we are on track to have less than 100 murders for this year which would be as low as it was in 1966. However the reaction to Bloomberg's economic heroics is akin to Churchill's war triumph - "ok, what can you do for me now?"
The electorate however is clearly not seeing the forest from the trees and there is an anti Bloomberg sentiment wave roaring through the precincts like a giant tidal wave. An 'Occupy Wall St' shadow looms over us like a 'dybbuk' (dispossessed spirit) and while flying around is finding refuge in the likes of Bill De Blasio - the Democratic nominee for mayor and Littitia James, the winner of the runoff election for public advocate. These are radical Liberals the likes of which we have never seen in NY city politics. The fact that Christine Quinn was not Liberal enough for today's dybbuk Liberals should say enough.
The Democratic party machine has 2 major constituents: Labor/the union-vote and minorities. There are 2 major policy ramifications which flow from needing to placate these 2 constituents: Status Quo or
near status quo for the educational system and a political correctness which is soft towards criminal activity be it toward crime apprehension or the justice system addressing it. This translates into anti school choice and letting criminals rule the streets as they currently do in other cities such as Chicago, Miami and Compton, California.
The fact that there is gang activity and non performing schools in U.S. cities which most parents up to very recently and even still today often have few options of getting away from, is just disgraceful and totally unacceptable for a supposedly modern and human rights society such as ours purports to be. People forget that NY city was economically on its knees in the late 70's and an urban jungle from the late 60's through the early 90's - a mega trend of 25 years that the Democratic leadership couldn't 'gib zich aan eitza' (figure out a solution to), to instill civility and safety on our streets.
So after another period of 20 years of getting back to basics between the 8 years of Guiliani and 12 years of Bloomberg the masses are getting restless again and from that lethargy and taking things for granted, comes an Occupy Wall St movement, a movement which is devoid of discipline and honor. The pendulum has swung back to the extent that the Democratic Party offers up as its nominee for mayor, no less, a radical from way back having affiliations with the FLAN - a Puerto Rican terrorist group who placed bombs in the US and caused the death of 6 Americans and maimed dozens. De Blasio also championed the cause of the Sandinistas in Nicaragua.
The fact is that the hard Left has a great influence on the current Democratic party machine. Sad to say that many in our own community overlook or are not aware of this undercurrent and the damage that it does to society. The fact that we have 75% of our graduating high school students who are not able to attend college without remedial education should say a lot. The fact that since Sandy Hook in Connecticut
which cost the lives of 20 children and 6 teachers or administrators there have been 13 additional school shootings should say even more. The public school system is a harbinger of ignorance and mental depravity with bullying gone rampant resulting in the horrible incidents of bullying victims taking
there own lives out of total desperation.
The Democratic party machine silences the masses from these ugly facts by doling out the goodies to the various groups of society including our own. Our own community is bought off by the Democratic party machine by its ability to fund various programs even though the Party completely ignores school vouchers or tax credit for school tuition which costs the community much more in lost subsidies than the entire discretionary funding (that only the party machine is purportedly able to provide). The fact that frum people have to hold appeals in shuls and radio telethons to offer parents relief for school tuition because the government takes from these parents money to school other children who's parents are no less well off, is not even a fair form of socialism and just amounts to abuse of its citizens. Incidentally, just like slavery was once acceptable and was ultimately rejected, anti school choice will not survive the test of time. Other states which already have school choice include: Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Utah, Virginia, Wisconsin and there are limited programs in Washington, D.C. and Douglas County, Colorado.
Recently I attended a candidates' forum held in St. John's University. Melinda Katz spoke about diversity of nationalities in Queens but not school choice. Personally, I think that catering to every group's diversity with government communications in their native language is a disincentive for immigrants to learn English. Rory Lancman spoke and seemingly defended his heretofore position of wanting to stop 'stop and frisk' which is really a short way of saying 'stop, question and frisk'.
He posed the question to the audience and asked whether anyone would disagree that being stopped by the police for no reason is wrong. This is a clever way of trying to justify why he would stop the practice which he is compelled to do to be a part of the Democratic party machine which endorsed him. So when audience questions were fielded I asked Mr. Lancman if he knew how many illegal guns were seized in 2012 through stop and frisk. He said "very few".
However here are some real facts about the program. According to the NY Post:
* They used stop-and-frisk to take 780 guns off city streets last year (2012), a 5 percent drop from 2011.
* A total of 7,137 weapons were confiscated. The number of knives recovered was 4,970, a 15 percent decline from 2011.
* There were also 1,387 “other” types of weapons recovered last year — a 12 percent drop from 2011.
According to a study by a Columbia professor a total of 5,900 illegal guns were seized through the stop and frisk program from 2004 through 2012.
The mothers in the inner cities, many of whom experienced tragedies over the years have expressed support of 'stop and frisk' because they understand that when properly done it is a great tool for law enforcement and for society to rid hoodlums of their illegal weapons. Lancman, like the other Liberal Democrats are nice people but niceness and effectiveness are 2 different things. You have to be nice but also be able to say 'no' to the UFT when they are destroying our educational system and causing NY State's educational system to be almost the most expensive in the country and have nothing to show for it. You also have to be able to say 'no' to the agitators who in the name of political correctness say that you shouldn't be able to 'stop, question and frisk' someone who is acting suspiciously or is similar in description to someone who reportedly committed a crime.
Yes, just because an active element in our city (the ones who vote in the Democratic Primaries) has decided to worship the 'golden calf' with its reward of immediate gratification doesn't mean we all have to! This immediate gratification is a koom ba ya of 'niceness' to all including the criminals and hands out goodies in the form of discretionary funding to some which leaves the public schools in shambles and parents of private school children scrambling to make ends meet. Let's be part of Aaron's camp who decided not to worship the 'golden calf'.