Archive for the ‘New York Governors’ Category

My 1991 “Ode To A Perplexed Governor” as published in New York Newsday (With Apologies to William Shakespeare)

Friday, January 2nd, 2015

I was very saddened to hear that former New York Governor Mario Cuomo has died. He was a fine governor and might very well have been a good president or U.S. Supreme Court Justice.

In reading his obits, I recalled that back in 1991 I wrote a Hamlet-style soliloquy for New York Newsday, related to Mario Cuomo’s indecisiveness about running for president. So I dug it out of my ancient archives, and here it is:

To run, or not to run: that is the question:
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous deficits
Or to take arms against a sea of Republicans,
And by opposing, defeat them. To reign at home:
Or to sleep at home no more: and by running to say we’ll end
The fiscal heart-ache, and the thousand natural shocks
The northeast is heir to, ’tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wish’d. To quit, to run;
To run: perchance to lose: ay, there’s the rub;
For in that White House quest what brutal press may come,
When we have shuttled off this Albany soil,
Must give us pause: there’s the respect
That makes calamity of so long New York;
For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
The opponent’s wrong, the public abuse,
The pangs of disprized voters, the law’s delay,
The insolence of office, and the spurns
That Democrats suffer from the media snakes,
If the Governor simply plays it safe
In the comfort of his Statehouse? Who would those burdens bear,
To drone that keynote speech night after night,
But that the dread of a crash in ’93 ,
A wrecked economy from whose depths
There is no return, puzzles the will,
And makes us rather bear those ills we have
Than fly to Washington finding who knows what?
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all,
And thus the native hue of resolution
Is sicklied o’er with fear of the polls,
And primaries of great pitch and moment
Seem less appealing as we fear each loss
And lose through sheer inaction.