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Paterson, Bloomberg and Wall Street

Random thoughts, while keeping an eye on the Dow:

David Paterson, reformer? After last week, I don't know.

First, the governor foists Richard Kessel on the state Power Authority's governing board. NYPA's new boss is known more for his political maneuvering than expertise as a utility executive.

Then the guv vetoes legislation strongly supported by housing reformers that would have established countywide land banks and expand tax credits for rehabilitation of historic commercial and residential projects.

None of this bodes well for Western New York.

What is it about New York City mayors?

First, Rudolph Giuliani wanted to undo term limits to allow him to, if not run for a third term after 9-11, at least get a short-term extension to deal with the aftermath of the terrorist attacks.

Now Mike Bloomberg wants to run for a third term and is pushing the City Council to temporarily set aside the terms limits set by voters in a referendum. He says now is no time to change mayors, what with the fiscal crisis and all.

My, my, aren't we self-important.

To quote Charles de Gaulle: "The cemeteries of the world are full of indispensable men."

Speaking of the fiscal crisis, I've read a lot and still don't know what ought to be done. Dense, complicated stuff. Can't say I blame Congress for not enacting anything yet.

I do know this much, however -- I'm sick of reading how we need to commit billions upon billions to restore "confidence" to the markets.

A show of hands -- how many of you need government money to be confident enough to do your job? The brokers and bankers need to suck it up and get about their business. I think they could all use a talk from Arnold Schwarzenegger.

A second conclusion I've drawn: The press has once again fallen down on the job. This is the run-up to the invasion of Iraq all over again -- echo conventional wisdom and ignore opposing points of view.

Sen. Bernie Sanders, the Vermont independent who was at the center of negotiations over the bailout, wound up voting against the bill approved Wednesday. Here's his reasoning -- the flip side of the story largely underplayed by the press.

I've come across this site, which seems to be a good clearinghouse of news and information on the crisis.

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Economics | Politics
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