Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the immortal Frederick O’Reilly Hayes, writing as John Lindsay’s budget director in New York to someone in the school construction agency who was trying to blame project delays on the Budget Bureau.
December 30, 1968
TO: Jason Nathan
FROM: Fredrick O’R. Hayes
SUBJECT: LaGuardia High School
O, you turkey! You pious turkey! You sanctimonious turkey!
Having belatedly discovered that the Music and Arts High School had something to do with Lincoln Center, having belatedly intervened in the planning process, having delayed construction for a year and added $3.3 million to costs – now, you worry about the Bureau of the Budget ” hacking around for six months on the cost issue.”
You’ll forgive me I see some kinship with George Bernard Shaw’s father whom GBS described as “a teetotaler by conviction and a drunkard in practice.” But at least Shaw, Sr. had the redeeming characteristic of limiting both preachment and practice to his own liquor.
Just a word on gratuitous libel. A check on the Meridian MIS indicates a maximum of two projects held up in Budget for as long as two monthly reports. This year, you and CPC have been on the critical path of this particular baby for longer than the cumulative Budget delays in project months on the entire education construction program.
Tell Ratensky to drop dead. Drop dead yourself.
N.B. If the Board of Education people are “terrified” that could be the best thing that’s happened to me all year.