Bill DeBlasio won the race for New York City mayor largely based on the same old progressive inequality rhetoric we here so often from Washington these days. It appears promising anything that sounds like you are taking from the evil rich sells to uninformed voters who are incapable of deeper thought about the promises. In other words, divide and conquer … the masses. The value of scapegoats should never be underestimated. In America today that means targeting anyone who has accomplished more in life than you, regardless of how. Success is out, victimization is in.
If you look at the numbers below you find that the promised new taxes to be used for all-day pre-kindergarten and after-school programs for teens which in turn are supposed to reduce inequality, come to $26,562,900. Given there are 540,878 children under age 5 in NYC (last census), that equals $49.11 per child and that doesn’t even include the children eligible for the after-school programs proposed. Are my numbers accurate; who knows? Play with them as you will. Assume only half the eligible children use the program and you still get less than $100 per child with no money left for the after-school program. Promises, promises.
Do you think the voters who see themselves as victims of the 1 percent took time to do the math? Besides, at best there are conflicting studies regarding whether there are any lasting positive effects of early education programs, but hey; it all sounds very appealing nevertheless so why muddy the waters with facts and reality?
And by the way, the new mayor must also find the money and ways to deal with union contracts and billions upon billions of dollars of unfunded pension and retiree health care liabilities, a legacy of liberal promises to “working” New Yorkers to be paid for by the rest of working New Yorkers. As any good Democratic politician would do, DeBlasio spent twenty minutes endlessly praising the sanitation workers for clearing snow on January 3rd; somebody is in a good negotiating position.
The appeal of the progressive agenda is undeniable, the simplicity of thought, the easy scapegoat targets, the playing to “victims” all come together to create the illusion that voters can have it all without effort or cost … except to someone else who somehow rose above the crowd to achieve success with ease and minimal work and risk.
Sad, very sad indeed.
De Blasio’s task, as he describes it, will be to focus on improving the lives of the 46 percent of New Yorkers with incomes at or below 150 percent of the city’s poverty level, or $46,000 for a four-person household in 2011. He seeks more income distribution in a city where the richest 1 percent took home 39 percent of all earnings in 2012, up from 12 percent in 1980, according to the Fiscal Policy Institute, a New York-based research group.
In a City Council with 48 Democrats among its 51 members, the overwhelming majority has expressed support for de Blasio’s agenda, including a resolution asking the state legislature to enact the tax increase. De Blasio defeated Republican Joseph Lhota in the mayoral race by 49 percentage points, the widest victory margin by a non-incumbent in city history.
Under de Blasio’s plan, the tax rate on incomes above $500,000 would rise to 4.4 percent from almost 3.9 percent. For the 27,300 city taxpayers earning $500,000 to $1 million, the average increase would be $973 a year, according to the Independent Budget Office, a municipal agency. – Bloomberg.com 12-31-13