was running for a third term - because he kept it under wraps until after the ballots were counted:
• The city budget deficit isn't as bad as he said.
• The NYPD was quietly exempted from the budget cuts at almost every other agency.
• A $60 million tax loss that gave Bloomberg a soap box to rail against the state Senate has magically vanished.
But that's all just numbers. What really drives the point home is the photo of Bloomberg and Sarah Palin hanging around in City Hall.
Bloomberg hosts visiting pols all the time for short meet-and-greets, and nobody knew at the time that, a year later, Palin would become a controversial Republican icon.
The photos might have been inconvenient for Bloomberg while he was running against Democrat Bill Thompson in a heavily Democratic city, but they belong to the taxpayers.