Sunday, December 1

A liberal's suggestions for how to reverse the loss of middle-class people from big Democrat cities

Liberal "elites"--writers and similar opinion-shapers--seem to have an astonishing capacity to look at a problem and avoid the obvious conclusion.

Example: Yesterday Slate published a piece titled "The revolt against urban gentry," in which the writer did the usual hand-wringing about income inequality and moaned about how the percentage of middle-class people is shrinking in large cities.

He insightfully claims "The key issue is how to expand high wage jobs in cities with high rents and costs of living."

So, does he look at the woeful lack of job skills among highschool dropouts in single-parent families with gang-banger kids?  Does he criticize the pervasive drug use that renders so many inner-city residents essentially unemployable?  Does he candidly admit that in hindsight, government policies that were predicted at the time to drive out high-wage manufacturing jobs might not have been a good idea after all?

Hahahahahaha!  Of course not!  If he'd raised any of those points Slate wouldn't have published his piece.  Instead he thinks outside the box:
Can Social Media Save New York? 
One approach, embraced by many urban boosters, is to lure social media firms.
That's it!  Brilliant!  Simply invite the big "social media" firms like Twitter and Facebook to come to NYC!  Why, they're worth BILLIONS!  They have thousands of employees making huge salaries!  Think of the tax revenue!  And think how much more attractive a New York City address would be than wherever they are now!  Where is Facebook, anyway?  Some sleepy wide-spot in the road called "Menlo Park," eh?  Geez, what bumpkins!  I'm surprised they can keep any hip employees there at all!

Folks, this is what passes for sophisticated problem-solving among the elites.  By all means, Slate, ride that horse as far as it'll take you.

Wait, wait!  Here's a better liberal idea:  Simply raise the minimum wage to double whatever it is now!  Srsly, that'll do it!  So what if we have to pay an extra quarter for a latte at Starbuck's or an extra buck for dinner at [insert name of current hip "dining experience" restaurant in NYC here]?  It's worth paying a tiny bit extra to give everyone a living wage.

And the beauty of that is, voters in Seattle have already agreed to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour.  We'll get a chance to see what happens in the coming months.

Okay okay okay [spoken in excited metrosexual tone], here's the *best* idea:
Instead of waiting for social media companies to save the day, or forcing up wages by edict, cities may do better to focus on preserving or even bolstering existing middle-income jobs. In New York, for example, more emphasis needs to be placed on retaining mid-tier white collar jobs, which have been fleeing the city for more affordable regions....
Wow, it was so *obvious*!  Right there in front of us all along!  Simply "place more emphasis on retaining white-collar jobs"!  Oooh, sorry, that was way racist:  "...on retaining collar jobs."  Yes, that's much better.

And we can accomplish that a city ordinance that any company operating anywhere in the state must have an office in New York City!  Wait, loophole alert:  Some greedy outfit like WalMart would open a dinky little 400 square-foot closet and claim they'd complied with the law. 

So the ordinance would have to specify that every company's office would have to have at least, say, ten percent of the company's total retail footage in the state.  Okay?  Not enough?  Don't worry, we can always fine-tune the number later!

Here's another idea for retaining white--sorry, collar jobs:  Pass a city ordinance that says companies that want to leave the city have to pay a fine six months before they leave.  Call it "intentional unemployment assistance" or something like that, to make it see like a regular unemployment-insurance tax. 

Oh, and then pass another ordinance--we'll call it "the Living Wage bill" or something catchier--that says companies operating in the city have to pay a wage of at least $25 an hour to...oh, wait, we already suggested that, huh.  So let's keep that one quiet until we've nailed down the first two suggestions.

Wow, who knew reducing "income inequality" would be so easy?


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