New York City’s self-proclaimed “progressive” Mayor Bill de Blasio stormed into office promising to make the Big Apple’s wealthiest pay their fair share so he could fund universal pre-K, and now it looks like deep pocketed New Yorkers are taking their money elsewhere.
“The new mayor of New York wants rich people to finally get theirs. You know what’s funny? If you look at all the Soviet leaders, that’s what they all thought. All the old Soviet leaders… thought back then that taking it from the rich would solve everybody’s problems. And so they were always after the rich,” Glenn said on radio this morning. “Now de Blasio is doing the same thing. And he is pushing a tax hike for those earning over $500,000 as a moral imperative. He says, I think it’s time to ask the wealthy to do a little more.”
In his Sunday column for the New York Post, syndicated columnist Michael Goodwin wrote:
One friend says 10 wealthy people have told him they are leaving and another says disgusted New Yorkers bought $1 billion in residential property in Florida since the November election. The Sunshine State confers an automatic tax cut of about 12 percent because it has no city or state income tax, nor does it have an inheritance tax.
Beyond taxes, the mayor’s open hostility is a factor. His insulting treatment of former Mayor Bloomberg at the inauguration remains a cloud over him. As one affluent woman, a self-described liberal, told me, “De Blasio hates me, so I hate him.” She doesn’t personally know him, but draws her conclusion from his words and deeds.
The central problem is the mayor’s childish view of wealth.
Taking a page out of Barack Obama’s playbook, de Blasio casts his push for a tax hike on those earning over $500,000 as a moral imperative.
Beyond losing the tax revenue, New York City charities stand to see a huge hit to their endowments should the mass exodus continue.
The sneering suggestion that everyone with money is somehow guilty of something is not a surprise coming from a man who spent his honeymoon on an illegal trip to Castro’s Cuba. What is a surprise is his lack of appreciation for the impact of wealth on city revenues and the importance of philanthropy to the arts and education.
As Bloomberg often noted, about 5,000 very wealthy families paid 30 percent of the city’s income tax. Losing even a few of them means significantly less money for filling potholes and hiring cops.
Billions in philanthropy support the arts, ranging from local dance groups to the flagship institutions that define New York as a world-class city. Nearly half of the Metropolitan Opera’s operating fund comes from donations, which last year reached $143 million.
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Private funding for charter schools, which primarily benefit low income black and Latino children, will also dissipate. This would further cripple the schools that have suffered greatly under the first few weeks of the de Blasio Administration.
“Just so you know, it’s also the really, really poor people that give to all the charities in New York,” Glenn joked. “Only the poor people who give to the charities. It’s always the poor people who make the opera happen… I think it will die a painful death, as will the ballet and some of all the other arts and… the hospitals that are being built… If you don’t have the rich, who is going to give that new wing to the hospital?”
Much like his progressive comrade President Obama, de Blasio is well on his way to fundamentally transforming one of the largest cities in the world.
“So New York, you’re on the way to being fixed entirely,” Glenn concluded. “But I think that’s also another progressive kind of thing – eugenics. Fix everybody.”
Front page image courtesy of the AP