In Praise of NY Governor Andrew Cuomo

March 25, 2020

We got this guy in New York State who's our Governor. Personally, I never liked him. Struck me as an arrogant jerk. Then again, I'm told that I make a similar impression on a lot of folks, On the other hand, I'm not a Governor, so, come to think of it, I sort of come up with the short end of that comparison.  Despite New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo not being a warm-and-fuzzy type of guy, I voted for him in 2010, 2014, and in 2018. As to that last election, I got pissed off when Cynthia Nixon challenged him in a Democratic primary -- what kind of idiot runs for Governor of New York State and brags about putting lox on a cinnamon raisin bagel? In any event, I voted three times for our jerk of a Governor. Why?  Frankly, Cuomo just gets crap done. He pushes. Prods. Cajoles. Whatever it takes. Bridges. Subways. Doesn't matter. When it gets close to the date when we taxpayers were promised completion, Governor Cuomo walks around, wags a finger, makes a pickle-puss face, and all of a sudden they finish up and on time. On top of that, he has a wonderful, wry, biting sense of humor. 

Here I am virtually a prisoner in my apartment in NYC trying to dodge the killer pandemic of coronavirus or COVID-19. Don't ya hate it when you're trying to escape something that's out to get ya and they can't even agree on what to call it? So  . . . anyways, in NYC, our Mayor Bill de Blasio has been pretty useless when it comes to dealing with the the City's coronavirus epidemic. The Mayor of one of the greatest cities in the world should act like it. Act like a leader even if your knees are knockin' together in fear. I remember Rudy Giuliani at his best in the immediate aftermath of 9/11. I will always give Rudy that moment, even if he was a jerk before and a horse's ass after. For those of us who lived with Ground Zero, Mike Bloomberg never gets enough credit for literally cleaning up and rebuilding. And Bloomberg did so with no nonsense. He wasn't a guy who smiled a lot. He didn't quite light up a room with his personality. What he did was lift this city from its knees, dusted us off, rebuilt, repaired, and left the Big Apple far better than the Baked Apple that he took over. And then there's de Blasio. He hasn't lived up to the moment.

During his recent press conferences, de Blasio looks like a deer caught in the headlights. I mean, geez, how many times can one guy blame President Trump for not taking this health crisis seriously -- for not delivering respirators, for not sending in the Army, for not shipping supplies?  At some point, we in NYC are all in agreement. Trump bumbled and fumbled the ball and we got lots of sick folks with not enough beds and a response that's both a day late and a dollar short. To be clear, the Mayor is right. A lot of sick folks will get sicker and perhaps die because of Trump's failure to timely recognize the severity of this plague and because of his failure to timely mobilize all available resources. So, fine, it's Trump's fault but what the hell are you going to do about it? In response to that question, NYC's Mayor doesn't have much in the way of an answer or a plan. About all we get from him is fear, worry, and an abiding sense that we're all gonna die. It may be true. Regardless, our Mayor has not risen to the occasion. He's no Churchill. He's no Cuomo. Ironically, he's pretty much another variation of Trump.

Which brings us back to Andrew Cuomo. 

Like I said, I never liked the guy. I'm not a registered Democrat. I'm not a registered Republican. I don't like political parties or the hacks that they foist upon us. I refer to myself as a  libertarian with a small "l." Which means that I'm not a member of the Libertarian party and I think that Rand Paul is an ass. As you might infer, I'm sort of out on a limb all by myself. My politics aside, Andrew Cuomo has been goddamn amazing the last couple of weeks. When he holds a press conference, he doesn't blow any smoke up our collective ass. He tells us that he's thinking about doing "A," but knows that there are problems with that option; and then he tells you that he is also thinking about doing "B," but isn't sure that it will be better than "A" and could be worse. After he sets out the agony of his choices, he makes one. He says that it's on me. He says that he was elected to make these hard decisions. He trusts New Yorkers to appreciate his candor and honesty, and also hopes that if he gets it wrong, we at least credit him for acting in good faith. Good faith ain't something we associate with politicians these days. Making unpopular decisions -- or making any decision at all -- isn't something we expect from any politician until after focus groups have weighed in and someone else is set up to take the blame if things don't pan out. As I have often quipped: We are a nation that ponders everything but resolves nothing. 

I am a social progressive and a fiscal conservative. I am a capitalist and an advocate for free markets. I detest bureaucracy and the inept dolts who run big government. I distrust socialism. I prefer local solutions and have an abiding confidence in the wisdom of juries and of the average man and woman in the streets. I favor sensible deregulation and rarely saw a tax cut that didn't fill me with joy. In contrast to all of that, I am a human being who lives on this planet with billions of other human beings and recognize that we must often show compassion, make sacrifices, and set aside our political beliefs for the commonweal. I am comforted by Governor Cuomo, who is pulling the levers and handles, slowly but with a hand that's done it before, with confidence that it's all going to work out but it may take time and there may be some hiccups. Sometimes wrong but never in doubt. Governor Andrew Cuomo is an oasis of competency and confidence in otherwise turbulent and frightening times.  Cuomo for President in 2020?