September 11 Digital Archive: XML Document


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Title:?Que pasa Miguelito? (What's up, Mike?)

Author:Fernando F. Rojas


Original Language:Spanish

Translator:Luisa Pinto


Blurb:Miguelito, what hurts most of all is that you are calculating your gains and losses like a street vendor, rather than a mayor. New York is not a product, to sell for a profit.



Forgive me if I call you Miguelito; it's the Spanish nickname for Michael. Calling you Miguelito allows me to speak to you with greater confidence and ease.

When you, disguised as a Republican, won the election by outspending Mark Green, I was fine with it. Though I knew that you were a liberal multimillionaire, a friend to the Clintons whose wallet was always open for the Democratic Party, I believed that you would work harder than Green. After all, Green has spent his entire life aspiring to elected office while letting those around him do all the work.

But Miguelito, from what I can see, you have started to show your claws. The first sign was your story about the deficit and, then, your proposed budget cuts. What about the people whose livelihoods depend on their city jobs, especially now, at a time when jobs are scarce?

Then, something repugnant occurred to you, prompting you to suggest increasing penalties for traffic violations and towing, removing existing tolls from bridges and tunnels and creating tolls where there were none previously. It has also occurred to you to suspend recycling; cut street cleaning; reduce garbage collection; limit overtime hours for firefighters and police officers; slash funds for children, homeless and the arts; and reduce the hours of libraries, museums, zoos, cultural locations and other places of interest in the city.

Miguelito, what hurts most of all is that you are calculating your gains and losses like a street vendor, rather than a mayor. How did you manage to find a multibillion-dollar deficit in the city?s budget when President Bush and practically all of the senators who have visited this city have promised us $21.5 billion in aid?

What is wrong, Miguelito? Are we not to spend the $20 billion on reconstructing and maintaining the city? Why don?t you mention those billions when you cling to cuts in the services and aid the very poorest receive?

Miguelito, remember that a major source of income in this city is tourists, whom you frighten with your cries of poverty and your cuts in public services such as firefighters and police officers. The tourists will decide not to vacation here in New York City. You should also remember that Giuliani, by keeping a strong and active police force and reducing crime, brought in a significant flow of tourists, which has given us a strong economy.

Well, Miguelito, before I end this letter, I would like to tell you to be more careful in what you say and do. This city is not one of your radio stations. It cannot be managed like one of your businesses. New York is not a product, to sell for a profit.


Fernando F. Rojas

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