Michael Bloomberg's Megalomania
"I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I'm not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in."
“I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.” —Michael Bloomberg, April 15, 2014
Nothing epitomizes the breathtaking arrogance of billionaire Michael Bloomberg better than the above quote. As a charter member of the “Archenemies of Liberty Club,” the former NYC mayor is firmly convinced that every political stance he takes is sacred. And since he is doing “God’s work” (if there is a God, he qualifies) he feels entitled to order the world as he sees fit, either by outright proclamations, or the spending of millions to advance his leftist agenda.
Perhaps the most telling example of his sense of self-importance is the least known. In 1993 — and again in 1996 because New York politicians refused to accept the results the first time — New York city residents voted to impose term limits on the city’s elected officials. Nonetheless, the same Michael Bloomberg who initially insisted any attempt to subvert the people’s will would be “disgusting,” convinced the City Council to extend the two-term limit so he could run for a third term, despite a Quinnipiac University poll revealing 89% of the electorate thought the voters, not the Council, should decide the issue.
Bloomberg’s rationale for subverting democracy? After the 2008 financial meltdown, city residents needed his financial expertise to guide them. “Those of us who work on both sides of City Hall must now move forward with the important decisions that face us, particularly finding ways to soften the fallout from the economic downturn and balancing our budget as revenues decline,” he said at the time.
Unfortunately for New Yorkers, Bloomberg’s “guidance” extended far beyond the financial realm, devolving into a series of Nanny State diktats that again revealed his contempt for the “unwashed” masses. The list of things he banned — including smoking, large-size sodas, trans-fats, cars in Times Square, loud headphones, single item styrofoam packaging and greenhouse gas emissions — and the things he mandated — including composting, sodium intake levels, and chain restaurant calorie counts, etc. — reveal the dictatorial impulses of a man firmly convinced he, and he alone, knows what’s best for all of us.
And what Bloomberg believes is best for all of us is boilerplate, social justice-oriented progressivism, backed by millions of dollars in spending.
Thus it is unsurprising that one of his passions is gun control. In 2014, he promised he would spend $50 million building a coalition to take on the Left’s favorite boogeyman, the National Rifle Association (NRA). The money was used to create advocacy organization Everytown for Gun Safety to take on the organization that protects the Second Amendment. “We’ve got to make them afraid of us,” he told The New York Times.
Since then Bloomberg has upped his expenditures, reaching a total of $71,176,294 during three election cycles, including donations to PR firm SKDKnickerbocker, whose agenda is to make gun control seem more attractive to voters. Following the shooting in Las Vegas, he promised to match every donation made to Everytown. Bloomberg’s success has been limited, however. Washington Monthly columnist Isabelle Ross, upset by that reality, nonetheless explains why, noting that Everytown, et al. “are fighting battles for specific policy changes, while the NRA has leveraged gun rights into a pugilistic fight for cultural dominance, propped up by the twin pillars of ‘protection’ and ‘freedom.’”
Leave it to leftists to bemoan the right of self-protection and freedom, while ignoring the reality that all gun control laws would only apply to law-abiding citizens.
Like every self-appointed crusader, Bloomberg is equally dedicated to combatting global warming. After Hurricane Sandy flooded Manhattan and the Jersey coast, finance magazine Bloomberg Businessweek, owned by Bloomberg himself, co-opted James Carville’s riff about the economy. “It’s Global Warming, Stupid,” the cover of the magazine stated. Thus it is no surprise he considers Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris Accord “embarrassing.”
Nor is it any surprise he has nothing but contempt for coal mining. “There is nothing that is going to save coal miners’ jobs,” Bloomberg said during an interview with Anderson Cooper last June. “And, to put it in context, more people work at Arby’s than work in the coal business.”
Bloomberg has been dedicated to eliminating coal mining jobs, donating $164 million to that effort since 2010. And not just in the U.S. After donating $64 million to Sierra Club’s “Beyond Coal” initiative in October 2017, Bloomberg pledged an additional $50 million on Nov. 9 to the worldwide elimination of coal mining. And staying true to his profound sense of megalomania, Bloomberg insisted “there is nothing Washington can do” to stop him and his equally dedicated activists.
“Thus yesterday, the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions and The Climate Registry announced they would sponsor the Climate Leadership Conference the EPA discontinued sponsoring this year.”
Yet some of Bloomberg’s activism infuriates many of those same activists. A movie entitled “From the Ashes,” funded by the billionaire, is politically correct in terms of coal, but its support for fracking, which is framed as a “bridge fuel” to a sustainable future, was deemed a “vanity piece for elitists in New York City or San Francisco who think they know what’s best for us hillbillies,” stated Appalachian activist Maria Gunnoe.
Perhaps it hasn’t occurred to Ms. Gunnoe that anyone who disagrees with Bloomberg is a “hillbilly” — which is a synonym for “deplorable.”
It is a contempt epitomized by Bloomberg’s disdain for everything that conflicts with his globalist agenda. Thus he is quite comfortable denigrating Great Britain’s attempt to free itself from the shackles of the European Union, insisting British voters tried to “ruin” the UK, before revealing his contempt for the American electorate’s attempt to also topple the globalist status quo. “I did say that I thought it was the single stupidest thing any country has ever done but then we Trumped it,” he told The Guardian in October. He also chastised Brits who felt the need to control the nation’s borders, insisting the English Channel “gave them control of their borders.”
That assertion dovetails quite well with his take on American immigration. In August 2016, “The Partnership for a New American Economy,” a pro-immigration advocacy group led by Bloomberg and Rupert Murdoch, rolled out an initiative called “Reason for Reform” aimed at making the case the nation needs comprehensive reform, coupled with a pathway to citizenship more familiarly known as amnesty. Joining the effort were entities like Intel, Google and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, whose support includes the expansion of the H1-B visa program that undercuts American wages. New American has also pressured Congress to approve the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) initiative unconstitutionally implemented by Barack Obama.
Like other billionaires, Bloomberg has a media empire to back his agenda. Beginning with Bloomberg L.P. in 1981, that empire has expanded to 20 subsidiaries that focus largely on finance and journalism, maintaining the consistently globalist perspective Bloomberg advocates. Moreover he makes no secret about what his “philanthropic” efforts are really all about. “By leveraging our resources, and forming partnerships with government, philanthropic organizations can help push those changes forward,” he wrote in his 2014 annual letter to Bloomberg Philanthropy members.
In 2010, New Yorkers approved a third referendum on terms limits by a margin of 74% to 26%. In 2016, Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton, despite Bloomberg’s resounding endorsement.
Perhaps, for Bloomberg, Heaven is as “inevitable” as Clinton was.