Rudy and Authoritarianism

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This New Republic article on the origins of Rudy Giuliani’s authoritarian instincts (hint: it developed long before he met the near-fascists he calls his foreign policy advisers), has a passage that strongly suggests America’s Mayor is really George Bush Lite. Check it out:

Giuliani’s seemingly insatiable appetite for authority was evident, first and foremost, in the way he ran his administration. Obsessed, as always, with loyalty, he demanded that power be centralized in his hands and that he receive credit for any of the administration’s achievements. Even the Department of Environmental Protection’s daily reports on the water level in the reservoir had to be cleared through Giuliani’s press office before being released. He also replaced Dinkins-era officials with loyalists, some of whom had little preparation for their jobs. Tony Carbonetti, the grandson of Harold Giuliani’s friend, was put in charge of the Office of Appointments, even though his previous experience consisted mostly of running a bar in Boston. According to Kirtzman, “one agency estimated that, of patronage hires, 60 percent were qualified, 20 percent had no experience, and 20 percent were ‘dirtbags.’ “

Placing loyalty above merit? Check and check. Unqualified losers that lack qualifications in high-level positions? Check. Altering scientific reports for political ends? Check.

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