One of my favorite lines is that I am not running for office, but from office. That said, I offer here some thoughts on the current contest for Mayor of Buffalo. Though the city has been in sharp decline for over fifty years, none of the candidates is offering a bold agenda of real change. I thought it would be interesting to see what such an agenda would look like. In Part I, I will offer up some policy proposals. Granted, they won’t be adopted now but experience shows that what is politically impossible at one moment can become quite possible very quickly. Part II will discuss direct action solutions.
Crime. Our crime problem is mainly caused by the absence of fathers in the home. The correlation between that factor and crime is undeniable. Of course, this problem was caused by the progressive welfare state. Progressives can never admit that any of their policies have failed since that would lead to questioning the very wisdom of progressivism in the first place. Why did the father leave the scene in low income neighborhoods? Because the mother got a better offer from the government. She, in effect, married the government. The obvious solution is to repeal the welfare state.
Drug prohibition is yet another failed progressive policy that leads to crime. See my Cato report. Like all other failed progressive policies, it cannot be reformed or salvaged. Repeal it now.
I will offer more ideas to combat crime in Part II as they fall under the category of direct action.
Schools. Government schools are hopeless. They cannot be reformed. The suburban ones are just as bad factoring in income and the educational level of the parents. I will discuss this more in Part II.
Economy. Buffalo has an extremely hostile business climate operating within the context of a Mussolini-type corporate state, a marriage of big business and big government. Connected businessmen thrive on subsidies and breaks their competitors don’t receive. Firms that want to succeed have to kiss the politicians’ asses; hence, the complete absence of any major business leader who fundamentally opposes the current regime and actually does something about it.
The solution is a free market of course. See Economics in Five Lessons.
Transportation. Since we have socialized roads, their use is irrational from the point of view of the customers since there are none. That is why our streets still operate on the basis of the on and off switch concept, red and green, that must be centuries old. This is the digital age. We need digital traffic controls like the digital light control I have had for years in my garage.
As I have said for 25 years, we need to break up the NFTA’s mass transit monopoly and allow firms to compete. Sell the subway to the highest bidder. That way, we might actually get some bathrooms down there.
Tear down the Skyway and create a parkway. Tear down the 198 through Delaware Park and make it into a parkway. Finally, fill in the 33 with dirt and re-create the glorious Humboldt Parkway!
Make Genesee into an digitally-controlled arterial to get to the airport. This might stimulate some economic development along that now desolate route.
Environment. Tell Cheektowaga to stop polluting Hoyt Lake.
Stay tuned for Part II.
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