Tag Archives: basic services

Hollow States Can’t Clear The Roads

Juan Gonzalez slams Bloomberg’s technofetishizing, neo-liberal, crony-corporate candyland.

Unless the new plan is for 911 callers to be hit with missile strikes, Northrop Grumman has no business being near our emergency phone services.

If the city had spent some of that computer consultant cash on snow chains for city ambulances, many of them would not have gotten stuck.

“Fire engines and police cars all have chains for their tires, but we have nothing,” said Bob Unger, a spokesman for the union of EMS workers. “Our union has raised the issue periodically and it wasn’t addressed. The screwups here went far above Peruggia’s pay grade.”

Better yet, if Bloomberg and his top aides had used basic common sense and declared a snow emergency from the start, sanitation crews would have had better luck clearing the streets.

Look at Philadelphia. At noon on Dec. 26, before a single flake had fallen in that city, the National Football League postponed the Eagles-Vikings game that was scheduled for that night.

Two hours later, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter declared a snow emergency. Up the turnpike in Newark, Mayor Cory Booker grabbed a shovel and went to work.

Here, Bloomberg & Company managed things by BlackBerry and Twitter from wherever they were. Immediately afterward, they went back to doling out the great new patronage of our time: $400,000-a-year consulting contracts.