This blog post is a stream-of-consciousness record of what happened this morning as I read about H. Carl McCall being named chairman of the SUNY board. These are my exact, unedited thoughts. James Joyce, I'm obviously not. Nevertheless, I hope my candid cogitation will stimulate public dialogue:
“Carl McCall? Really? For Chairman? Isn’t that the most important position there is in higher ed? McCall seems like a decent guy, but does he have the background for it? Oh, it says here that he’s been on the SUNY board for a while. OK, but what about Cuomo’s talk of making bold, out-of-the-box appointments? Carl has been around for a long, long time. How old is he now? Good bless him, he’s 76. He looks good for 76. I doubt I’ll look that good when I’m that old. I wonder why Cuomo picked him? I would have thought that he wanted to get some young hot shot to remake the system. Who did he recruit for the Medicaid redesign team? Elgerson? Helgerson? Yeah, I wonder why Cuomo didn’t get the Helgerson of Higher Ed to help rejuvenate the SUNY system? Why McCall? Come to think of it, I’ve got to start planning for college for the boys. I’ll have two kids in college at the same time. That’s easily 100k a year. Damn. I sure hope SUNY is a good option – good schools at an affordable price. So I guess McCall would be ok. He was Comptroller. He knows the finance world. He’s probably a decent administrator. Then again, I don’t recall him being a particularly dynamic Comptroller. There was the occasional audit, but he didn’t do much to shake up the system. Hmm, it says here that McCall’s wife is the head of a SUNY school. He’ll have to recuse himself on any related issues. He must have been following a protocol on that already. It’ll be more expansive now. Could be little awkward, but it’s not an insurmountable problem. McCall, McCall -- there’s something else about him. What was it? What was the deal during the Spitzer days? Oh, yeah, McCall was on the board of the New York Stock Exchange. He wasn’t named in the Spitzer’s suits, but he signed off on the exorbitant salaries. People said he was asleep at the switch. Isn’t Cuomo now looking at non-profit compensation? And there was something else about McCall. What was it? I remember: When Cuomo was investigating Hevesi and Dinapoli, people wondered why Cuomo didn’t look at McCall’s practices, too. There were rumors about that, but nothing ever came of it. Now it’s all coming back to me. Cuomo primaried McCall. It was a really divisive thing. Bad blood. Well, it certainly would have rekindled tensions if Cuomo had folded McCall into the whole Comptroller’s office probe. Then again, maybe there was nothing on McCall. They sure did make nicey-nice after that. McCall was stumping for Cuomo. They say McCall is now Cuomo’s point person in the minority community. It’s strange how one-time enemies can make up and be so close. OK, so maybe this appointment was some kind of reward for being a good ally. It’s politically smart by Cuomo. And I guess there’s nothing wrong with it. I really just hope McCall’s up to the job. I hope he’ll bring energy and creativity to the position. I hope he’ll be a strong and independent voice for education – like we need in ethics and a host of other areas. Well, I guess time will tell.”
Gotta go just got a call from Insider Z and this one could be big, gonna take all day to run it to ground so sorry Carl I got to get back to what I’m good at. Stay tuned for Insider Z coming soon to a prosecutor near you.