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DeBlasio and the snow

deBlasioSnow

I have my criticisms of New York City mayor Bill DeBlasio (see here). But the attacks on him for his handling of yesterday's snowstorm, and his decision to keep schools open, are a distraction.

Deciding whether to open schools in the face of bad weather is often a no-win situation. Keep them open and some people will complain about having to trudge through the snow. Close them, and some parents will complain about having to find childcare.

On balance, the bias should be towards trying to keep cities operating, including keeping schools open. Too often, whether for snow or hurricanes or some other inclement weather, mayors just shut everything down in the name of "better safe than sorry".

It's pretty clear what's motivating certain critics of De Blasio: they want to portray the new mayor as a head-in-the-clouds liberal ideologue who is incompetent when it comes to the basic operations of local government, such as snow removal and school closings. But this is taking the easy way out: they want the snow itself to bring De Blasio down a peg. The way to challenge De Blasio is through political arguments, not his handling of relatively rare weather events.

 

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