I had an interesting conversation with my 23-year-old nephew last week after his graduation from his master's program.
Fresh out of years of indoctrination from the ivory towers, he predictively possessed a far-left perspective on the world in which he was about to take on.
Our discussion was intellectual, and at times combative, but always respectful.
But I simply could not believe how naïve this young man was about how the world worked.
Two topics in particular stood out. First was his insistence that police officers were hunting down unarmed black men for sport and that a handcuffing of the police was warranted.
He simply could not accept the facts I laid out before him --- namely, that the total number of unarmed Blacks killed by police in the United States in 2019 was under 15, while the number of unarmed whites killed was 25 (despite the fact that the number of police encounters with Blacks is much higher.)
Ironically, he is moving into an apartment in Manhattan for the first time next month.
Previously he had the good fortune of living in a sleepy suburban town while he was earning his degree on Long Island.
Without trying to be too much of a Debbie Downer I warned him that New York was no longer the nation's safest large city, as it has been under the Rudy Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg administrations.
He was simply too young to remember the bad old days of the early 1990s when approximately 2,200 New Yorkers were murdered each year, mostly by gun-toting, marauding gang members.
The Rudy Giuliani he knows only as a Trump lawyer, came to the rescue by implementing the broken windows theory and a "stop, question and frisk" policy taking thousands of illegal guns off the street.
By the time Bloomberg left office, the murder rate dropped to 335.
My nephew doesn’t seem to be aware that it was the leftists, whom he supports, who came into office after Bloomberg and reversed Giuliani's policies by eliminating bail for most violent criminals, while ending stop and frisk and the broken windows policy.
Vagrancy laws were ignored, so the homeless population exploded with the addicted and with those who are severely mentally ill, who took over sidewalks, parks, and subways.
While my nephew is not thrilled about those things, he stubbornly refuses to concede.
Perhaps he just doesn’t understand.
It's the leftist policies he's embraced that have led to a return of this decay.
I am praying that neither he nor his girlfriend will ever become prey to the resurgent illegal element that has taken over New York City, and other metropolitan areas of the U.S.
W then talked about the idiocy of passing legislation that pays people more to stay home than to go to work. I thought this was one issue upon which we could finally agree.
The problem for my nephew was not that we were paying people so much through government checks that they were staying home, but rather that employers were paying them too little to incentivize them to work.
Actually, the thing that incentivizes people to work is the fear that they won’t eat if they don’t have money. When the government is going to pay your electric bill, your rent and your supermarket tab, you’re far less likely to get off the couch at 5:00am to work for the Man.
But to my naïve nephew, if this form of socialist welfare helped raise wages, it would be worth it. (I’m all for rising wages, but through the preferred method of spurring economic growth, as we saw wages increase after the 2017 tax cuts.) Unfortunately, he doesn’t see the negative ramifications that will come about from this policy that will adversely impact his own life.
When people don’t show up for work, productivity sharply declines. The country soon experiences a decline in needed supplies, thereby leading to longer lines, as well as delays to obtain needed products. And, of course, to higher prices by which to buy them.
(See: The Wall Street Journal > "Corn Is the Latest Commodity to Soar," by Ryan Dezember and Kirk Maltais, May 10, 2021)
Prices have risen roughly 50% in 2021, and a bushel costs more than twice what it did a year ago
Fewer people to process chickens means the price of poultry goes up significantly.
And that’s when the chickens will come home to roost for my naïve young nephew, and others with the same youthful, naive philosophy and worldview.
Steve Levy is President of Common Sense Strategies, a political consulting firm. He served as Suffolk County Executive, as a NYS Assemblyman, and host of "The Steve Levy Radio Show." He is the author of "Solutions to America's Problems" and "Bias in the Media." www.SteveLevy.info, Twitter @SteveLevyNY, firstname.lastname@example.org. Read Steve Levy's Reports — More Here.
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