Lately, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has appeared intent on making a career out of exhibiting levels of chutzpah that shouldn’t even be possible.
First, when COVID-19 hit, his state suffered the highest death count in the nation, in no small part directly due to his decision to send sick people into nursing homes. Then, he botched supplying the state with ventilators and other crucial equipment. His recent vaccine rollout hasn’t been anything impressive either.
All the while, New York has been groaning under the weight of his draconian lockdown restrictions. Religious observers, both Jews and Christians, have been persecuted simply for wanting to worship. One-third of small businesses, especially restaurants and bars, have been irreparably damaged and will probably never open again. In collusion with teachers’ unions, Cuomo continues to keep schools closed, despite no evidence that children are major vectors of the virus or that they are at risk of becoming seriously sick.
All the while, he has the gall to write a book praising himself for what a hero he’s been and to hide records from people who are curious about the actual toll that COVID-19 has taken on the state of New York.
But Cuomo isn’t satisfied with this. He needs to find yet more ways to throw his weight around and insult the intelligence of everyone watching his performance as governor.
On January 11, Cuomo said the following on Twitter: “We simply cannot stay closed until the vaccine hits critical mass. The cost is too high. We will have nothing left to open. We must reopen the economy, but we must do it smartly and safely.”
It is astonishing that Cuomo can say this while apparently having no awareness of the cost of his own lockdown measures. The cost of these, he must think, cannot be “too high” simply because he has not been meaningfully affected by them.
He also blames the federal government for the hellscape that New York has become, despite the fact that people are fleeing the state in droves as a direct result of his mismanagement. New York’s budget for 2020 was $177 billion, but Cuomo still found a way to make the deficit explode.
Things Will Get Worse
As Biden prepares to enter the White House, he will no doubt proceed to do more destructive things of dubious efficacy, like mask mandates and more shutdowns. The CDC will again change what it considers to be a “COVID death” so as to cook the books, make things appear worse than they are and justify more repressive policies.
Cuomo will happily march in lockstep with him. Even if he won’t be able to blame New York’s accelerating decline on Trump any longer, he won’t care. In the end, what Cuomo does will only win him more power.
And that, after all, is what he truly cares about.