By Julian Brash
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Extra info for Bloomberg's New York: Class and Governance in the Luxury City
As they did so, they interpreted policy problems and formulated their solutions in ways consistent with their professional and class-inflected skills, desires, ideas, and experience. This injected 20 • introduction class directly into the workings of city government, which had two effects. It “deepened” (Geertz 1973) urban governance for members of the postindustrial elite in city hall, transforming what might otherwise have been relatively bloodless areas of policy and policy conflicts into matters bearing directly on their experience, identity, and status.
The next few decades saw this dynamic repeat itself as coalitions of middle-class reformers and private-sector elites periodically pushed back against the “excesses” of political machines more friendly to working-class interests and supportive of higher levels of municipal spending (Shefter 1992). In the post–World War II period this cycle ended, as the local state’s placation of corporate and real estate interests preempted the necessity for direct elite intervention into urban governance. Thus began a process of change as this period of political stability and shared economic growth came to an end.
The second section of this work, consisting of chapters 3 through 5, shifts the focus to the Bloomberg administration. Chapters 3 and 4 address the Bloomberg Way itself, which explicitly conceived of the mayor as a ceo, the city as a corporation, businesses and residents as clients, and the city itself as a product. Chapter 3 lays out the ways in which the first two elements of the Bloomberg Way were manifested in city policy; chapter 4 outlines the manifestation in policy of the second two elements of the Bloomberg Way.