Bloomberg: The Billionaire Nothingburger

Michael Bloomberg, who served as mayor of New York City, has announced that he is a candidate for the Leftocratic Party's nomination to run for president in 2020.  In his announcement, he said President Donald Trump is an "existential threat" to our country.  This hyperbole is his way of reaching out to the extreme, panicked, deranged, and enraged Leftocrats who literally believe that everything worthwhile about America is being assaulted by our president. 

Additionally, he noted that health care costs need to be addressed, that we live in an economy that is "tilted against most Americans," that we have a "cruel and dysfunctional" immigration system, education, climate change, and Washington gridlock.  These glittering generalities regarding areas for improvement represent his attempt to play on the public's fears without being too specific.  The question of immigration has been boggling our leadership's minds since the 1980s.  Ronald Reagan's amnesty for illegals was supposedly going to solve the problem, but it served only to send a message: "come to the USA illegally, and eventually you'll get the citizenship you crave."  Then we had bipartisan support for a fence in 2006, which was signed into law, but it was never fully implemented, partially because of objections and obstacles raised by the Department of Homeland Security and partially because of a shell game by our congressional representatives in both houses who wanted to appear to be doing something to protect our borders while shoving implementation opportunities under the rug.

Bloomberg is not only issues-oriented.  He is also a strange creature who is obsessed with soft drinks.  In 2012, he banned the sale of sugary drinks in containers 16 oz. or larger in New York City.  Two years later, the New York Court of Appeals struck this ruling down as being "arbitrary and capricious."  Five years after that sugary drink fiat was struck down, this hobby horse, or obsession, is still deeply in his mind.  In an interview since he announced for the presidency, he said higher taxes help people live longer because they will have less money to indulge poor eating habits.  The example he gave was...sugary drinks.  If they are taxed, people with more limited incomes will not drink them, will spend more on education, and will have more enjoyable lives. It did not occur to him that if they had less money they would still buy sugary drinks and fewer fruits and vegetables.

Since announcing his candidacy, Bloomberg has sought to ingratiate himself with the race- and gender-obsessed constituencies of the Leftocratic Party.  He issued a mea culpa regarding his use of stop-and-frisk procedures during his tenure as mayor of New York City as placing an unfair burden on black and Hispanic communities.  However, he has not yet recanted his opposition to the legalization of marijuana when he was mayor, but even at that time he expressed a desire that its possession be lowered from a misdemeanor to a violation.  Sen. Cory Booker will probably challenge him on that in one of the upcoming debates.  Such a challenge may result in another reversal and another mea culpa.

He is also on safe ground with his perverse support of homosexual "marriage" going back before Obergefell v. Hodges.  In 2012, he endorsed Maryland's same-sex "marriage" law saying in a statement, "I do not believe that government has any business telling one class of couples that they cannot marry."  Yet again, his logic is flawed and self-serving.  Why do states and cities even issue marriage licenses?  It is because by doing so, the government is regulating the classes of couples that can and cannot marry.  Brothers and sisters cannot marry.  A divorced parent cannot marry his child, or even a niece.  A human being cannot get a license to marry a pet...or even a wild animal.

This review of the Bloomberg candidacy cannot be completed without a comment and review of the most extensive changes of his mayoralty in the field of education.  First, he entered the arena as a radical change agent of education by asserting mayoral control over the New York City educational system.  Since 1969, prior to his being mayor, educational policy was set by a Board of Education with seven members appointed by the mayor and the presidents of the five boroughs that constitute New York City.  Under Bloomberg, that system was reorganized into a Panel for Educational Policy with seven members appointed by the mayor and five by the presidents of the five boroughs. This gave the mayor control over education.

This change in the locus of power led to some of the most radical educational changes in the history of New York City.  A new rating system for teachers — the Danielson system — was introduced, where classroom decorations, rapport with the students pursuant to a more user-friendly classroom, and student lack of attention were laid squarely at the feet of the teachers.  Numerous so-called failing comprehensive high schools were decentralized and converted into three or four "academy schools" (not modeled on Plato's academy).  This radical re-creation of secondary education was supposedly to provide more attention to students, but in reality, it increased the number of administrators in the same building (now housing three or four schools) so that administrative mandates could be more intensely enforced and falsifying of attendance and manipulating of grades could be more easily implemented.

Experience no longer was given top priority in promoting people to principals or even higher management positions.  Rather, the young "change agents" brought in to manage the schools were deemed wise because of their lack of experience.  "Experience" connoted commitment to the older, failed educational system and was no longer an advantage in seeking promotions.  In Bloomberg's new vision, only three years' experience was needed to enter the "leadership academy" to undergo intensive training to be a principal.  Novelty and youthful relatedness replaced true educational values.  Computerized record-keeping and grading were implemented, but some programs like Skedula had teachers asking if their grades were being calculated properly, although those questions were never addressed.  Arbitrary benchmarks for grading school success moved to center stage and replaced the old-school centrality of knowledge, analysis, synthesis, love of learning, creativity, and good character. 

He is the Leftocrats' newest candidate, but he does not have a track record of public service worthy of the high office of president.  He has business smarts but lacks a love for liberty and for the common man, whom he is sworn to serve.  With the waste this writer perceived in Bloomberg's Department of Education, one has to question his ability to handle money, even though that is presented as his strongest suit.  He is an addition to the Leftocratic field of candidates, but he adds not one whit of hope for the voting public.

Image: Gage Skidmore via Flickr.

Michael Bloomberg, who served as mayor of New York City, has announced that he is a candidate for the Leftocratic Party's nomination to run for president in 2020.  In his announcement, he said President Donald Trump is an "existential threat" to our country.  This hyperbole is his way of reaching out to the extreme, panicked, deranged, and enraged Leftocrats who literally believe that everything worthwhile about America is being assaulted by our president. 

Additionally, he noted that health care costs need to be addressed, that we live in an economy that is "tilted against most Americans," that we have a "cruel and dysfunctional" immigration system, education, climate change, and Washington gridlock.  These glittering generalities regarding areas for improvement represent his attempt to play on the public's fears without being too specific.  The question of immigration has been boggling our leadership's minds since the 1980s.  Ronald Reagan's amnesty for illegals was supposedly going to solve the problem, but it served only to send a message: "come to the USA illegally, and eventually you'll get the citizenship you crave."  Then we had bipartisan support for a fence in 2006, which was signed into law, but it was never fully implemented, partially because of objections and obstacles raised by the Department of Homeland Security and partially because of a shell game by our congressional representatives in both houses who wanted to appear to be doing something to protect our borders while shoving implementation opportunities under the rug.

Bloomberg is not only issues-oriented.  He is also a strange creature who is obsessed with soft drinks.  In 2012, he banned the sale of sugary drinks in containers 16 oz. or larger in New York City.  Two years later, the New York Court of Appeals struck this ruling down as being "arbitrary and capricious."  Five years after that sugary drink fiat was struck down, this hobby horse, or obsession, is still deeply in his mind.  In an interview since he announced for the presidency, he said higher taxes help people live longer because they will have less money to indulge poor eating habits.  The example he gave was...sugary drinks.  If they are taxed, people with more limited incomes will not drink them, will spend more on education, and will have more enjoyable lives. It did not occur to him that if they had less money they would still buy sugary drinks and fewer fruits and vegetables.

Since announcing his candidacy, Bloomberg has sought to ingratiate himself with the race- and gender-obsessed constituencies of the Leftocratic Party.  He issued a mea culpa regarding his use of stop-and-frisk procedures during his tenure as mayor of New York City as placing an unfair burden on black and Hispanic communities.  However, he has not yet recanted his opposition to the legalization of marijuana when he was mayor, but even at that time he expressed a desire that its possession be lowered from a misdemeanor to a violation.  Sen. Cory Booker will probably challenge him on that in one of the upcoming debates.  Such a challenge may result in another reversal and another mea culpa.

He is also on safe ground with his perverse support of homosexual "marriage" going back before Obergefell v. Hodges.  In 2012, he endorsed Maryland's same-sex "marriage" law saying in a statement, "I do not believe that government has any business telling one class of couples that they cannot marry."  Yet again, his logic is flawed and self-serving.  Why do states and cities even issue marriage licenses?  It is because by doing so, the government is regulating the classes of couples that can and cannot marry.  Brothers and sisters cannot marry.  A divorced parent cannot marry his child, or even a niece.  A human being cannot get a license to marry a pet...or even a wild animal.

This review of the Bloomberg candidacy cannot be completed without a comment and review of the most extensive changes of his mayoralty in the field of education.  First, he entered the arena as a radical change agent of education by asserting mayoral control over the New York City educational system.  Since 1969, prior to his being mayor, educational policy was set by a Board of Education with seven members appointed by the mayor and the presidents of the five boroughs that constitute New York City.  Under Bloomberg, that system was reorganized into a Panel for Educational Policy with seven members appointed by the mayor and five by the presidents of the five boroughs. This gave the mayor control over education.

This change in the locus of power led to some of the most radical educational changes in the history of New York City.  A new rating system for teachers — the Danielson system — was introduced, where classroom decorations, rapport with the students pursuant to a more user-friendly classroom, and student lack of attention were laid squarely at the feet of the teachers.  Numerous so-called failing comprehensive high schools were decentralized and converted into three or four "academy schools" (not modeled on Plato's academy).  This radical re-creation of secondary education was supposedly to provide more attention to students, but in reality, it increased the number of administrators in the same building (now housing three or four schools) so that administrative mandates could be more intensely enforced and falsifying of attendance and manipulating of grades could be more easily implemented.

Experience no longer was given top priority in promoting people to principals or even higher management positions.  Rather, the young "change agents" brought in to manage the schools were deemed wise because of their lack of experience.  "Experience" connoted commitment to the older, failed educational system and was no longer an advantage in seeking promotions.  In Bloomberg's new vision, only three years' experience was needed to enter the "leadership academy" to undergo intensive training to be a principal.  Novelty and youthful relatedness replaced true educational values.  Computerized record-keeping and grading were implemented, but some programs like Skedula had teachers asking if their grades were being calculated properly, although those questions were never addressed.  Arbitrary benchmarks for grading school success moved to center stage and replaced the old-school centrality of knowledge, analysis, synthesis, love of learning, creativity, and good character. 

He is the Leftocrats' newest candidate, but he does not have a track record of public service worthy of the high office of president.  He has business smarts but lacks a love for liberty and for the common man, whom he is sworn to serve.  With the waste this writer perceived in Bloomberg's Department of Education, one has to question his ability to handle money, even though that is presented as his strongest suit.  He is an addition to the Leftocratic field of candidates, but he adds not one whit of hope for the voting public.

Image: Gage Skidmore via Flickr.