Newsflash: Politician Says Something Really Stupid

MichaelDumbergWe’ll be the first to confess that there are times when Michael Bloomberg comes across as an admirable voice of sanity in an otherwise insane world. The New York Mayor’s courageous stand on gun control would be one example. And even his much ridiculed legislative jihad against monstrous, sugar laden soft-drinks surely has a laudable concern for public health at its heart. But there are times when the man takes positions that can only be described as stupid.

This is one of those times. In an interview published today in New York Magazine Michael Bloomberg accuses Bill de Blasio, the current Democratic frontrunner in the race to succeed him, of running a racist political campaign for prominently featuring his mixed-race family in campaign commercials:

I mean he’s making an appeal using his family to gain support. I think it’s pretty obvious to anyone watching what he’s been doing. I do not think he himself is racist. It’s comparable to me pointing out I’m Jewish in attracting the Jewish vote. You tailor messages to your audiences and address issues you think your audience cares about. 

It’s truly mind boggling that the man who is most responsible for, and is the most prominent defender of, New York’s controversial stop and frisk policing methods, and who later in that same interview insists that the best way to reduce crime in the city is to get guns out of the hands of “minority males” could accuse another politician of racism for running campaign ads that prominently feature his mixed-race family. But then, I guess in a nation that accepts the notion that anti-gay propaganda equates to promoting “family values” while relentlessly slashing taxes in the hopes of driving the nation into bankruptcy and then dismantling our meager welfare state constitutes “fiscal/deficit hawkishness…” well, why not… Hell, let’s take it one step further and note that our president is perhaps the most racist individual alive today for having the temerity to run for office without once hiding the fact that he is black and the child of a interracial marriage.

(Update: New York Magazine is now offering the following text and tagging it as a “correction:”

Well, no, no, I mean he’s making an appeal using his family to gain support. I think it’s pretty obvious to anyone watching what he’s been doing. I do not think he himself is racist. It’s comparable to me pointing out I’m Jewish in attracting the Jewish vote. You tailor messages to your audiences and address issues you think your audience cares about.

The previous statement, in which Bloomberg describes de Blasio’s campaign as one characterized by “Class-warfare and racist” remains unchanged.)

(Via: The New York Times)

11 Comments

Linking to the NY Times. Audacious.

Meanwhile I can’t make head nor tail of that quote. Wait. It’s a Google translate thing, right? He was speaking in tongues.

Oddly enough, all the lily-white political candidates have been trotting their adoring families into the public eye since this nation began and not a single one of them was accused of being racist for doing it. There must be some difference here with de Blasio but I just can’t seem to put my finger on it.

One is left to imagine how Bloomberg actually campaigned for the Jewish vote. Did he quote Mel Brooks a lot? Woody Allen?

@Dave H: Slip in a little Yiddishkeit, they’ll get the message, just in case being named “Bloomberg” leaves some room for doubt.

@Dodgerblue: “Oy, this meshugenah weather is making me spritz rizik! Pass me the schmata!”

What, too much?

I think he is making an appeal using his family to gain support…

Which is such wild and unexplored terrain in modern politics.

@Tommmcatt Can’t Believe He Ate The Whole Thing: No. It’s like when my klezmer band does “Mein Yiddishe Mama.” There is no over the top.

Our mayor is all pissy because 1) he can’t have a 4th term; 2) his successor will likely undo most of the stupid shit he’s done.

@Tommmcatt Can’t Believe He Ate The Whole Thing: I think I can speak for all of us in saying we’re sure glad ex-Gov. Palin didn’t resort to “making an appeal using” her “family to gain support” a few years back. What a circus that could have been. Wait a minute …

@Tommmcatt Can’t Believe He Ate The Whole Thing: Maybe. I just found a stack of DVDs of some of our gigs. At one point we had a male vocalist in his early 80s, fluent in Yiddish with an inexhaustible supply of Yiddish-themed dirty jokes. He could really sell a song. Unfortunately, he had a lot of trouble remembering when to come in and when to lay out. He also knocked over his music stand every goddam performance.

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