Thursday, July 21, 2011

Penny Wise, Pound Criminal

Mayor Bloomberg has to prioritize, of course, as he applies his financial genius to the ruinous 3.2 billion dollar surplus this year. He's brilliantly managed to avoid firing 4,000 teachers, but has managed to lose a good 8,000 over the last three years. This is an important achievement as it saves a bundle for no-bid deal to give personal info about 1.1 million school kids to Rupert Murdoch, who's recently purchased ex-chancellor Joel Klein. Klein, as you may recall, presided over the DOE as it took a billion dollars to reduce class sizes and magically made them go up.

In yet another innovative coup, Mayor Bloomberg is replacing the filthy no. 6 oil that his people say costs lives with marginally less filthy no. 4 oil. So perhaps it will cost fewer lives. After all, one must prioritize. It's cheaper to convert 6 to 4, and then they can say that at least they did something.

This, in fact, is the MO of Bloomberg and his "reformers." Just last week Bloomberg declared his merit pay plan was an abject failure, but patted himself on the back for his willingness to try something new. In fact, a more intelligent approach would be to try something already tested and proven effective, like smaller class sizes, which parents repeatedly call their no. 1 preference on the surveys he repeatedly ignores.

There's really no defensible rationale for doing public health on the cheap while tossing out millions for ineffectual computer systems and no-bid contracts with disgraced media moguls. If episodes like these don't make Mayor4Life's priorities crystal-clear, I don't know what does.
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