Amazon was ready to provide jobs for 25,000 to 40,000 New Yorkers, bringing in an estimated $27 billion in tax revenue over 25 years. It was asking for $3 billion in government incentives, a figure that surely could have been negotiated to reflect a more realistic deal. But instead of working with Amazon, left-wing New York lawmakers and activists trashed the corporation, pushing it to relocate elsewhere.
To show how radical the Left has become in New York City, The New York Times ran a front-page headline that no one ever expected to read: "Stunning Loss for Cuomo and de Blasio is Win for Left."
If these two left-wing politicians are no longer considered part of the Left, then the Left is unrecognizable. Who's left? Fanatics and economic illiterates?
No one was happier killing the Amazon jobs than Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the heralded friend of the poor who was raised in a tony Westchester neighborhood and who now lives in a luxury apartment building in Washington, D.C. She accused Amazon of "worker exploitation."
She did not explain why workers who were slated to earn an average salary of $150,000 should be considered exploited. Nor did those union leaders who worked to scrub the Amazon deal.
Ocasio-Cortez and her flock may talk a good game on helping the poor, but in reality they are the poor's worst nightmare. Consider the following data.
A recent Siena College poll revealed that 70 percent of black voters wanted the Amazon deal. Among Latinos, the figure jumped to 81 percent. Only a slight majority of whites, 51 percent, wanted it.
A Quinnipiac University poll found that those who were the most likely to support the deal lived in the city's poorest borough, the Bronx. Queens, where the jobs were to be anchored, was the second most supportive. The richest of the five boroughs, Manhattan, was the least supportive.
As with the Siena survey, Latinos were the most supportive, followed closely by blacks; whites were the least supportive.
In other words, the poor got hosed by their professed friends. As we have seen time and again in history, the poor are more likely to be oppressed than liberated by those who champion their cause.
Dr. William Donohue is the president and CEO of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights. The publisher of the Catholic League journal, Catalyst, Donohue is a former Bradley Resident Scholar at the Heritage Foundation and served for two decades on the board of directors of the National Association of Scholars. He is the author of seven books, and the winner of several teaching awards and many awards from the Catholic community. Read more of his reports — Click Here Now.
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