Michael Poppins
When the nanny acquired a police force . . .

(AP/Seth Wenig)


Same with guns: You don’t need them, you’re better off calling 911. Just like he does when he’s a private citizen in Bermuda. Oh, no, wait: On a small island where most of Her Majesty’s Constabulary are unarmed, Bloomberg’s security detail has been given a special dispensation to pack heat. It’s different for him. Likewise, he’s done such a grand job of reducing private-aircraft access to LaGuardia that Bloomberg Services (his jet fleet) is now the single largest user of the ever fewer slots at the airport. He took his Falcon to the Copenhagen climate-change summit, where he listened to other high-flying global warm-mongers propose a maximum “carbon allowance” for the citizens of freeborn nations to force them to rein in their vacations to Disney World. And then he got in the Falcon and flew back to one of his homes.

In a republic of limited government, the least a citizen-executive could do is feign the lifestyle he prescribes for everyone else. Instead, in a poorer, sicker, more dysfunctional America with less social mobility, the gap between the ruling class and the ruled is likely to widen in the years ahead, and the billionaire who determines his subjects’ maximum calorie intake will not seem such an outlier. Somewhere along the way, Michael Bloomberg forgot the most stirring scene from that favorite boyhood novel, Johnny Tremain. James Otis, the Massachusetts assemblyman who coined the “taxation without representation” line, is in a tavern addressing John Hancock, Paul Revere, John Adams, Sam Adams, and the rest of the gang. “There shall be no more tyranny. A handful of men cannot seize power over thousands,” he roars. “The peasants of France, the serfs of Russia. Hardly more than animals now. But because we fight, they shall see freedom like a new sun rising in the west.”

May 6, 2013    |     Volume LXV, No. 8

Special Defense Section
Books, Arts & Manners
  • Jay Nordlinger reviews Roger Ailes: Off Camera, by Zev Chafets.
  • Richard Brookhiser reviews The Village: 400 Years of Beats and Bohemians, Radicals and Rogues: A History of Greenwich Village, by John Strausbaugh.
  • Abigail Thernstrom reviews Intellectuals and Race, by Thomas Sowell.
  • Robert VerBruggen reviews Why Are Professors Liberal and Why Do Conservatives Care?, by Neil Gross.
  • John Daniel Davidson reviews Big, Hot, Cheap, and Right: What America Can Learn From the Strange Genius of Texas, by Erica Grieder.
  • Ross Douthat reviews Terrence Malick’s To the Wonder.
The Long View  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  
Athwart  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  
Poetry  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  
Happy Warrior  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .