So saith the most notorious nanny-state municipal official in America. Can you guess which subject drove him to this rare moment of libertarian inspiration? If not, review Ed Driscoll’s long list of things the New York city council has considered banning in recent years and just use process of elimination.

Remember, this is a guy whose usual idea of a “compelling public purpose” is stopping poor people from drinking soda.

In voicing his support for same-sex marriage, Mayor Bloomberg has mentioned — and appeared with — his niece Rachel, who is lesbian. “It brings it home,” he told me on the phone this week, though he added that beyond his desire for her to have everything she wants in life, “Government should not tell you what to do unless there’s a compelling public purpose.” He sees no such purpose in blocking same-sex marriage.

I wonder if he recognizes the tension between that statement and his own previous attempts at micromanaging city residents’ health but doesn’t care, or if this is another case of Bloomy groovin’ on righteousness to the point where it blinds him to key facts. Remember the time he went on Stewart’s show to lecture opponents of the Ground Zero mosque about freedom of religion, and claimed he couldn’t understand why Americans would be more interested in where a mosque’s financing is coming from than, say, a synagogue’s? Any FBI agent in America could have explained that to him in 30 seconds, but then why should we expect any deep knowledge of counterterrorism from, er, the mayor of New York City?

Speaking of which, via JWF, here’s a new ad commissioned by Bloomberg about a very compelling public purpose. He’s pretty sharp on terror, it turns out, when it dovetails with his own pet policy interests. Coming soon, presumably: A Bloomberg ad calling for much stricter immigration policies to make sure jihadis can’t sneak in or overstay their visas. Compelling public purpose!