Saturday, June 4, 2011

I agree with the theme of this editorial

Of course Bloomnerd killed NYC. I'm just surprised the entire nation hasn't followed in his footsteps as Health Nazis.


Michael Bloomberg: the man who killed New York
By Brendan O'Neill
Last updated: June 2nd, 2011
I have written in the Spectator this week about the muzzling of New York
City by its miserabilist Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, and his joy-killing
sidekick and health commissioner, Thomas Farley. These two health freaks are
zapping the spirit from what Walt Whitman described as a “mad, mettlesome,
extravagant city” by instituting all sorts of lifestyle-related rules and

If you had to think of one city on Earth where the rulers should not try to
impose a standard of ‘good behaviour’, it would surely be New York. Who in
their right mind would seek to sanitise this concrete jungle, to sedate the
city that never sleeps, to demand conformism and obedience from the
inhabitants of a place which, in the words of a popular tourist T-shirt, is
known as ‘New York F**kin’ City?

You’d be surprised. New York is currently governed by a gaggle of
health-obsessed bigwigs who believe they have a duty to grab New Yorkers by
the scruffs of their outsized necks and drag them towards lives of
bicycle-riding, non-smoking, booze-avoiding, fruit-snacking conformity. City
Hall, under Mayor Michael Bloomberg, is awash with that new breed of
psycho-politician known as the ‘nudger’, who believes that he has the right
to use psychological techniques and brute censorship to manipulate and
‘improve’ human behaviour…

For me, the most striking thing is the lack of criticism of Bloomberg’s
antics. Liberal commentators, especially at that bible of East Coast
righteousness the New York Times, have either turned a blind eye to his
authoritarian bans on smoking, fatty foods and soda pop, or have cheered
them on. Where liberals were often scathing in their attacks on former mayor
Rudolph Giuliani’s intemperate policing of Central Park and late-night bars
and strip joints, they have raised barely a peep about Bloomberg’s policing
of lifestyle.

This rather confirms that there is a stifling conformism today in relation
to state intrusions into personal health. Where those who fancy themselves
as edgy, state-suspicious liberals are more than happy to lambast old-style
authoritarianism, they have little to say about the new-fangled state
nudging of the allegedly fat, feckless masses towards lives of thinness and
sobriety. That’s a shame because, if anything, the Bloombergers’
pyscho-nudging of the populace, their desire actually to remould the
citizenry, is far more pernicious than anything Giuliani got up to.
Tags: authoritarianism, Michael Bloomberg, New York, Nudge, Spectator

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