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Billionaire entitlement run amok: Bloomberg for President? God No!

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By Dave Lindorff

Michael Bloomberg, according to Forbes Magazine the 9th richest man in the world with a net worth this year of $54.7 billion, isn't just the real billionaire candidate for President in 2020 (Donald Trump's net worth is almost certainly not counted in the billions, and could be negative for all we know, since he won't release his tax records) Bloomberg is also the billionaires' candidate for president. That is to say, he's not just rich, he's their man.

Bloomberg, who owns 88% of the giant media company Bloomberg LLC, where most of his wealth is in the form to shares of that company, has seen his wealth grow from $4.5 billion in 2001 when he first ran for public office seeking and winning election as mayor of New York City, to $36 billion by the time he left that office after a third term in 2013. It would be a neat trick to increase one's wealth four-fold to such a staggering sum while receiving a Big Apple mayor's salary of some $250,000 a year, but Bloomberg didn't take a salary, receiving at his request only $1 per year for his services during those three terms.

That might seem harmless enough, but let's remember that during those years, New York had to survive through the Fiscal Crisis a crisis largely brought on by the criminal behavior and limitless greed of the denizens of Wall Street and the giant banks, most of which had their corporate headquarters only a few blocks south of City Hall and the Mayor's office. During that crisis, the Mayor hammered public employee pay, threatened to lay off teachers during bargaining with the city's teachers' union, cut spending on school construction for a burgeoning student population, and pushed the state government to limit public employee unions' right to strike.

Did Mayor Bloomberg put any pressure on the Manhattan district attorney, Cyrus Vance Jr., to prosecute those giant global banks like Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan Chase and Citicorp and their top executives for mortgage fraud? No, not a word from him on that.

The one thing this wealthiest of men (in 2011 while he was having his police harass and ultimately crush and evict the Occupy Movement from Wall Street's Zuccotti Park his $19.5 billion in net assets made him America's 12th richest person) also never did during his tenure was offer to plunk some of his money down to help the city's struggling working class city employees weather the man-made storm that was battering the city's finances. Significantly, he did plunk down $1.8 billion as a donation to Johns Hopkins University, a hardly struggling institution based in Baltimore, but nothing for New York City Schools, or even, if he were so enamored of higher ed, for the always struggling City University of New York.

As our tragically departed and sorely missed ThisCantBeHappening co-founder Charles M. Young (known for years to avid readers of Rolling Stone magazine as "The Reverend") wrote in a hilarious recounting of a phone conversation he had with a "push-poll" caller working for Bloomberg, he could solve the city's budget problems if he wanted to. All of them. Here's part of that conversation:

Caller: Mayor Mike Bloomberg wants to avoid raising taxes"

Young: Why should I give a crap?

Caller: Sir, do you strongly approve, somewhat approve"

Young: Let me ask you a question"It's your turn to answer my question. Do you know how much Mayor Mike Bloomberg is worth?

Caller: No, I don't.

Young: I've seen different estimates, but it's probably about $18 billion. You can put on your survey that I strongly disapprove of that"

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Dave Lindorff is a founding member of the collectively-owned, journalist-run online newspaper www.thiscantbehappening.net. He is a columnist for Counterpunch, is author of several recent books ("This Can't Be Happening! Resisting the (more...)
 

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4 people are discussing this page, with 7 comments  Post Comment


Jill Herendeen

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...to say nothing of how he got "elected" in the first place, when registered GOP & Conservative voters numbered maybe a third of registered Democrat & WFP. I strongly suspect secret vote-"counting" of one form or another.

voters: click here


Submitted on Sunday, Dec 1, 2019 at 8:33:47 PM

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Dave Lindorff

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Reply to Jill Herendeen:   New Content

Nah. Forget the conspiracy theories. New Yorkers, despite being overwhelmingly Democrat, have voted in supposedly liberal Republicans many times -- Think Lindsay and Bloomberg. They also elected Republican Rudy Giuliani don't forget!, and he wasn't even posing as a liberal. It might be because sometimes they elect a Democrat and he turns out to be a conservative, like Ed Koch. It's a crazy town. You pretty much have to live there to understand it (which I did for 12 years).

Dave Lindorff

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Submitted on Sunday, Dec 1, 2019 at 10:45:53 PM

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Jill Herendeen

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...which explains even more....

Submitted on Monday, Dec 2, 2019 at 1:32:10 PM

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Lance Ciepiela

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Bloomberg launched a $40-plus million advertising campaign that puts him on pace to break the record for the most personal wealth spent on a presidential campaign in modern history.

Submitted on Monday, Dec 2, 2019 at 1:10:19 AM

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Dave Lindorff

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Reply to Lance Ciepiela:   New Content

He'll also plop down a tidy sum to buy delegates' votes, as Clinton did in 2016. Watch for it. Hopefully the public will see through this corruption.


Dave Lindorff

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Submitted on Monday, Dec 2, 2019 at 6:46:13 PM

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Richard Pietrasz

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The current OEN front page also has a link to a Chris Hedges article that notes that the cops who crushed Eric Garner to death

were carrying out policies established by Bloomberg during his tenure as mayor.

click here

Submitted on Tuesday, Dec 3, 2019 at 9:12:31 AM

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Reply to Richard Pietrasz:   New Content

Hedges is correct. Bloomberg left Mayor Giuliani's "broken windows" policing policy, which basically made the police an occupying army in low-income minority communities in the city, with a massive "stop-and-frisk" program that primarily focused on black and hispanic males in their teens and twenties most of whom had no weapons, but often got busted for made up charges of "resisting" or for possession of small amounts of marijuana that didn't lead to arrests of whites. My daughter, at the time a teacher in a low-income public high school in Queens said every day young male students in her morning math classses would be late because they'd been stopped and searched, including their school bags, on the way to school. Bloomberg admits he did this, and apologized, but that does nothing for the tens of thousands who ended up wrongly jailed for minor things during his tenure. And then there's the young kid wrongly charged with stealing a book bag, who spent years in jail awaiting trial because his family couldn't post bail, who was eventually freed when his case was dropped, and who later committed suicide. Nice one Mayor Mike! How do you apologize for that? Or for the murder of Eric Garner? Answer: You and even all your money can't! You should spend the rest of you sorry life atoning, not running for plutocrat president.


Dave Lindorff

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Submitted on Tuesday, Dec 3, 2019 at 4:11:05 PM

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