Monday, September 5, 2011

Lupica: Bloomberg's pals get a pass but all others pay the price

Mike Lupica

Monday, September 5th 2011, 4:00 AM

Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced the appointment of Stephen Goldsmith to deputy mayor but did not make an announcement when - or why - he was fired.
Jefferson Siegel for News
Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced the appointment of Stephen Goldsmith to deputy mayor but did not make an announcement when - or why - he was fired.

The sheets come out regularly from the NYPD public information office, and show how you get treated when you're not one of Mayor Michael Bloomberg's deputy mayors getting arrested out of town.

In recent weeks, they included the name of a Department of Education guy arrested inside a school, charged with two counts of assault. And the name of a Parks Department worker charged with DWI when he refused to take a breath test. And a school safety agent picked up for possession of marijuana with intent to sell.

This isn't about them as much as it is about the double standards of Bloomberg's third term, as he continues to defend his conduct regarding former Deputy Mayor Stephen Goldsmith.

Goldsmith lost his job last month because he got arrested in Washington in July when his wife called the cops on him after a domestic dispute. Only that is not what Bloomberg told everybody at the time. He told everybody Goldsmith was leaving his administration to explore opportunities in the private sector.

When the mayor of New York finally had to answer questions Sunday outside a church in Brooklyn, he apologized for nothing. He really has got to be kidding. You would say that Bloomberg has some nerve here, but we knew that already. We are way past that, into arrogance and the sense of entitlement that got him this third term in the first place.

The second time he was asked if he felt he misled the public when his administration issued its original statement about Goldsmith's resignation, here is what the mayor said:

"Only if you write it that way or put it on television that way. I don't think that's the case. The obligation I have as an employer is to make sure we treat all the people who work for New York City as respectfully as possible."

You wonder if people working for Education, Parks, public safety, all the ones whose names go right out there when they get into trouble, feel the same way.

Now Bloomberg wants to make a rather tortured distinction between getting arrested in Washington and getting arrested in New York - as if geography drove his thinking in this matter.

It just comes out sounding like more face-saving jive.

Goldsmith lost his job because he got thrown in jail for 36 hours, whether his wife refused to file charges on him or not.

It is what Bloomberg should have said at the time, and all he should have said.

Only Bloomberg did not do that. Or would not. Goldsmith says now he should have been the one to say why he was resigning. No, that was the mayor's job. The way it was his job to admit a mistake yesterday, even if that would have felt as rare as a total eclipse of the sun.

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