Sheinkopf Speaks: Circling the Wagons to Save NYC

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Hank Sheinkopf

Just because two politicians announced they’re won the battle for the same office doesn’t mean you’ve lost your mind. 

You heard right. Maybe they think New York City has a parliamentary form of government where coalitions switch leaders when no clear majority exists as a way cynics might say to make sure the pols can keep their hands on the exchequer’s check writing. 

People who normally worry about more basic needs have focused on the fight for the Speakership of the City Council, which we should call over. Smart money says the winner is Queens Councilmember Adrienne Adams and when it is so declared she owes a thanks to contender Brooklyn Councilmember Justin Brannan who had the class to call it a day and become as he described it the “Queenmaker.”

End of story? No. Citizens who refuse to join the documented Big Apple exodus are worried about things not small which include for example nearly 60 non-fatal shootings in only one Bronx police precinct.  Or the recent daylight shooting on Manhattan’s West 102nd street.

The people leaving are packing belongings into moving vans. This is no joke. They are gone. Then there are those who we should call day counters. Their number is 163. They keep precise counts of the days they spend living outside the city. 365 days a year. more than half of those days outside Gotham boundaries? You win the non-resident lower taxes prize. 

The politicians and the new Speaker might do as other electeds of other eras have done and say, ‘no it can’t be so. People must stay here. They will never really leave. They will come back. After all, they owe New York City. It made them.’ Nobody they cry out is going anywhere.

This is an old song with the same words, and maybe a different musical beat to make it more culturally and musically current.

Crime? Bad. Taxes? Bad. Florida and low taxes worse. So what, pols say.

At a conference this fall the head of one of the largest and thus influential investment houses warns the end of New York as world financial capital is gaining high velocity.

How could they do such a thing you ask? Easy. Corporations once told a mayor that the rumors were false. They would never leave the garbage-filled streets and the crime. Disorder was the recipe for stability. Well, they lied. The town went bust, and mortgaged itself to the bankers for nearly 40 years to stay alive, to pay off the debt of the 1975 city fiscal crisis—kind words for municipal bankruptcy.

Speaker Adams can do something important with help from New York nationalists like Justin Brannan. Get sworn in, shake hands and create a special committee to protect New York jobs. No rhetoric. Keep the corporations, the bankers here. Make public recommendations. Enact them. Do it quickly. The guys with the big dough and the counters aren’t kidding. We lose them and the gunmen in that Bronx precinct and the daytime West 102nd street shooters will own the place. 

Speaker Adams and Councilmember Brannan: please save New York. Please. 

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