Barrett for Bloomberg

We know Mike’s communications director’s ears must have perked up when the legendary longhaired muckraker at the Village Voice, Wayne Barrett, gushed about Mike during Tuesday’s panel discussion at the New School on “The Mayor and the Media.”

(Yes, we know, a three-day lead time is a bit long for a blog. Blame Ben.)

Barrett said Mike should get credit for “extraordinary fiscal management of this city. I think that’s the measure of any mayor.” Wayne didn’t stop there. “I love the mayor for the way in which he deals with municipal labor. This may sound strange coming from a liberal Democratic columnist at a liberal newspaper.”

Strange indeed.

Barrett also lamented that City Hall reporters have become the Boys on the Bus.

“The New York Times coverage is led by the City Hall bureau. That’s a mistake because City Hall reporters need to keep a different relationship.”

(NOTE: An earlier version of this item misattributed that last quote to Joyce Purnick. Nope. That was Wayne. The Times columnist called Mike a great innovator, but poor communicator.)