Rudy's Misplaced Loyalty to Friends as His Achilles Heel

One of the chapters in Rudy's book is titled "Surround Yourself With Great People." As the Washington Post points out today, many of his appointments as Mayor of New York turned out to be dismal choices, based on blind loyalty to his friends rather than competence.

We all know about Bernie and Rudy, but there are plenty of other examples, which taken together, show "a pattern of rewarding loyalty over competence in personnel decisions:

There's Howard Safir, whom Rudy appointed Police Commissioner after the very competent Bill Bratton:

[Safir] came under intense criticism after the fatal police shooting of an unarmed black man, for failing to provide adequate oversight of the police unit involved in the shootings and for his detached response. He also came under scrutiny for, among other things, taking a corporate jet to the Academy Awards shortly after the shootings, for assigning eight detectives to his daughter's wedding, and for sending officers to investigate a woman who rear-ended his wife's car.


Fred Siegel, who wrote a very flattering biography of Rudy, says:

....the switch from Bratton to Safir [was] the "worst policy decision" Giuliani made. Safir, Siegel said, lacked the instincts needed in the city and contributed to the worsening racial tensions in Giuliani's second term. "This was [Giuliani's] biggest failure," said Siegel, "not being big enough to keep Bratton. . . . Many of the failures [of his second term] flowed from that decision."

Jerome Hauer, whom Rudy appointed to head the office of emergency management, says:

Giuliani "had a blind spot when it came to people he knew well" and "very little respect for the vetting process....The competent people in the administration all tended to leave because they got tired of the borderline-incompetent people who got in.

Then there's Russell Harding, whose father, as head of the Liberal Party, was instrumental in getting Rudy re-elected as Mayor. Rudy appointed the younger Harding to lead the Housing Development Corp.:

Harding had no college degree or background in housing and finance, and was eventually convicted of stealing more than $300,000 from the agency and sentenced to more than five years in prison for the embezzlement and for possessing child pornography

According to Rudy's book:

"Patronage does not mean giving a job to someone who supported you politically," he writes. "It means giving a job to someone only because he supported you politically."

Bottom line: Rudy's leadership record is just smoke and mirrors. Hopefully, his cronyism and poor choices in appointments will prove to be his achilles heel.

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    oddly enough, (none / 0) (#1)
    by cpinva on Sat Nov 24, 2007 at 04:22:40 AM EST
    this sounds vaguely familiar:

    "a pattern of rewarding loyalty over competence in personnel decisions:

    hmmmmmmmmmmmm, let me think. think, think, think! oh, the thinks i can think! who might this also describe? wait, don't tell me!

    ummmmmmmmmm, first name starts with a G. last name starts with B?

    is it possible george and rudy are evil twins?

    It's not misplaced loyalty (none / 0) (#2)
    by joejoejoe on Sat Nov 24, 2007 at 05:01:23 AM EST
    Giuliani is a sociopathic authoritarian, just like Bush. He's loyal only to his own power and if some hack like Kerik serves to maintain and increase Giuliani's power then Kerik is embraced. Giuiliani believes he's strong enough to crush any dissent in the press with a smear campaign so what is the harm in surrounding himself with corrupt people?

    Giuliani picks exactly the kind of people he wants to be around him - power hungry thugs. The fact that that type of person is also most likely to be corrupt is a feature, not a bug in Giuliani's mind. Corrupt people  know shortcuts to power and that's what Giuliani wants, not ethical government.