In this dangerous world, being mayor is not necessarily a stroll around the rose garden. Ponder, for example, mayors Gerardo Blyde and David Smolansky of the Caracas boroughs Baruta and El Hatillo, currently facing charges brought by the Venezualan government for failing to defuse the massive anti-government protests in their neighborhoods.
Or spare a thought for Volodymyr Makeyenko, mayor of Kiev, who recently defected from the ruling Party of Regions to take "personal responsibility" for keeping the city running in the midst of unrest which has claimed dozens of lives. A more fraught decision, clearly, than New York's Mayor Bloomberg becoming an independent.
Closer to home, New Jersey governor Chris Christie sank deeper into the political mire as it was claimed that he handed out pieces of 9/11 wreckage to friendly New Jersey mayors.
On a lighter note, nothing says "New York" more than those slightly stinky horses hauling carriages romantically around Central Park (unless it's, well, the Empire State Building, or the Rockettes, or Yankee Stadium, or a dirty-water hot dog). Mayor Bill DeBlasio has been suggesting the horses might usefully be replaced by electric cars, and he wasn't recently held to account for this by -- of all things -- a Hollywood celebrity!
Liam Neeson invited the Mayor to visit the stables with him, in order to confirm that the horses are well looked after. DeBlasio -- who has executive responsibility for a city of some 8 million people (not to mention commuters and tourists), the largest municipal budget in the country, a staff of 250,000, and keeping the snow of the streets -- said he'd pick his own time for a visit.
Neeson, an actor who recently completed filming a comedy western and is currently working on an animated film, found time in his busy schedule to complain about "falsehood propaganda."
Toronto I was hanging out with some Canadians from Toronto this weekend. They were quite unfazed by the carry on of their mayor, even though he is still in place. It turns out the council has laregly neutered him through some executive order and he is less of a risk. However, Boris Johnson? Now that's another story.
How's the job look now? Makeyenko has to be wondering exactly what he signed up for after the secession vote this weekend and Putin's rush to make the annexation more formal. Maybe the two Vlads are old pals and will usher in a New Era of Good Feeling.
Re: Toronto It's good to have a good laugh over the antics of celebs and politicians. And I'm sure they're getting their daily dose of publicity to feed the egos, if not the pocketbook. It's a never ending PR bonanza in the world of local government!
Toronto Maybe I should stay away from the topic of replacing Rob Ford, because it's a story which is just so easy to write about. Then again...
A left-leaning politician popular in liberal downtown Toronto kicked off her campaign Thursday to replace Rob Ford, setting up a showdown with the conservative mayor who vows he will win despite the drug scandal engulfing him.
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