July 25, 2009

You Learn for Four Years. Your Do for Four Years. You Clean Out Your Desk for Four Years.

Of the 36 commissioners listed on New York City’s official website as key members of the Bloomberg administration, 19 have served in that capacity since his first term started almost eight years ago, including the commissioners of the Police, Fire, Corrections, and Sanitation departments. Most of the deputy mayors and top administration officials have also been with Bloomberg in some capacity since the beginning of his first term. If the past eight years are any indicator, and considering how essential these people are to the Mayor’s essentialness, not many key members of the administration are going to stray very far if Bloomberg is reelected.

Here were Bloomberg's thoughts on term length for city government officials back in the halcyon days of 2002 when reelection was seven years off:

"There’s no organization that I know that would put somebody in charge for a long period of time. You always want turnover and change. Eight years is great. You learn for four years. You can do for four years."

Except all the people who work for him. And the city council. Even though they already did for eight years. But they weren’t good enough. Or they were so good we can't live without them even though if they were that good we wouldn't need them because things wouldn’t be so bad in the first place.

Mayor Bloomberg is standing in the paths of scores of hopeful activists and civil servants. Potential candidates--mayoral, council, assembly, senate, and down the line--have already adjusted their plans because Bloomberg threw his money and power at his obstacles, and put the girth of NYC incumbency in their way. In addition, if Bloomberg wins in November hundreds upon hundreds of City employees who were ready move up, and those ready to move behind them, will have been bloomberged just like everyone else. Bloomberg has already altered a generation of potential service to New York City. If he wins in November, the damage could be irreperable.

Click here to see the length of service for all the NYC commissioners.
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