Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Introducing David Paterson

Who is David Paterson? New York's governor, very soon. At a party last night, all we could come up with was that Paterson is black, blind, and from Harlem.

His website bio goes a bit further: he's the son of the powerful Basil Paterson, who dominated the "Harlem Clubhouse" political machine for decades. David was New York State Senate minority leader, and he addressed the Democratic National Convention in 2004. The bio is depressingly devoted to identity politics:
David Paterson has demanded and achieved change at every level, not simply by what he stands for but by who he is...

In 2004 in Boston, he became the first visually impaired person to address a Democratic National Convention. And 2006 saw Mr. Paterson make history again by being elected New York’s first African-American lieutenant governor...

...[he served] as the primary champion for minority- and women-owned [sic] businesses in New York
I'm glad I live in a state where a blind black man can become governor. However, I hope that as governor he sees all New Yorkers as his constituents, not merely the handicapped, black, and his father's political dynasty. Doling out special government contracts to minority- and woman-owned businesses is a fancy form of patronage and reverse racism/sexism [full disclosure: I was employed under one such contract in D.C.]; it does no favors to making fair and transparent government.

4 comments:

cory said...

for a fresh take on Spitzer's foibles see the Ha'artez article. That's a good paper.

Chops said...

Thanks; that was much better laid-out than most of the U.S. papers' stories. Maybe a little less shellshock and a little more journalism there.

cory said...

...or more shell shock, as the case may be... but good journalism anyway.

Carol L. Douglas said...

Now, the question is, will he get to be governor, or will Eliot squirm loose?