Monday, July 23, 2012

Paul Krugman Distorts Bad Guy Life...

Krugman has an absurd column out today, which seems to support single parent families. He writes:
I grew up in the America marked by that peak in violence — the America in which Times Square was a nest of drug addicts and porn shops, and people were afraid to take the subway. Now it’s another world.

And that’s one reason I find all these laments about declining values among non-elite Americans hard to take seriously. If things like single parenthood were as bad as they say, how can social pathologies have declined so much?
What he is doing here is creating a false model.

I have no idea how Rudy Giuliani did it, but when he was mayor of NYC (1994-2001), he did clean up the streets of the homeless and the hoodlums. I have no idea where he put the homeless, but the hoodlums from the Giuliani era are still likely in jail. When the hoods are in jail, they no longer add to the street crime statistics. It may not be that there are fewer nut jobs out there, but that many more are in jail. Much of current urban crime is the result of a new generation of gun toting hoods. In Rhamaland, most of those you see reported arrested are generally in the 14 to 18 age bracket. If you add up the hoods in jail and the new hoods hitting the streets, you will find no drop off in social patholgies among what Krugman calls the non-elite Americans.


  1. If social pathologies have declined, as Krugman says, people like him would not be hired to mold young minds at such ridiculous expense. Paying to hear an immoral idiot teach is worse than throwing your money down a rathole.

  2. Bill Bratton probably deserves a lot of the credit although I don't necessarily agree with some of the methods. For example, the NYPD now looks more like an occupying army than what one would normally call a police force. A lot of that is due to 9/11 to be sure but Bratton started many of the changes. He upgraded the NYPD's weapons cache and changed their uniforms to black and vastly increased the department's use of technology.

    I had the chance to meet him a couple of years back during a guest lecture. He's very smart and very focused.

  3. I wouldn't give credit to any of those people for "cleaning up new york". Unless we want to enter fantasy land and thank Rudy for cleaing up the rest of the country too, since nearly all major crime indexes fell nationwide during this time. And yes, I lived in NYC from 1982 to 1997, so I have an idea of what was going on at the time.

    I'm not going to pretend that I know what caused this turn of events to occur, but I believe there is more at work here than we probably understand.

    Rudy is like the Bill Clinton of crime fighting. He was a fortunate warm body in a position of power when there was a beneficial trend at play. Bill of course gets deserved credit for his "stewardship" of the US economy during the 1990s.

  4. Don't forget Wenzel that youth unemployment is much worse today then back in 2000 when Giuliani cracked down.

    I loved doing business in Manhattan at that time.

  5. Naw, what really cleaned up New York was, the punks got priced out of the market. Now they live in Paterson.

  6. Forcing homeless people off the street and into shelters, as Rudy did, doesn't solve the problem of homelessness. There are always limits to the power of charity, but individuals must empower themselves by taking charity from the cold hands of the state, and exercising it themselves. We must make all actions voluntary. I would argue that the state has exacerbated homelessness more than any other institution on earth. How many of these people are veterans of the armed forces? How many have seen war?

    Hell, the state passed out "free" cigarettes to combat soldiers, helping to hook much of the country on smoking. Then it launches a "war" to "combat" smoking. This is the worst institution to handle anything.

  7. Uh, the business model changed. It's called Internet porn. There's no need to keep a retail shop in Times Square. It's on the web for free.

    Maybe he could lament the downfall of Woolworth's and ignore a company like Amazon.

  8. Interesting tidbit: The town of Elmwood Park, NJ was once known as East Paterson. I'd have to look up when it was renamed, but I guess that the transition from E.P. to E.P. was a cheaper way to go. The reason for the name change, at least in part, was supposedly to disassociate itself with Paterson.

  9. The 70's decline in NYC was due to high taxes, high inflation and light manufacturing (like sweatshops making clothing) in lower Manhatten collapsing. The war on drugs starting in the 1980's exacerbated the problem as the one profitable industry for the unskilled labor was criminalized.

    The revival of NYC in the 1990's had a lot to do with money shipped out two decades earlier flooding back first from Japan then from the rest of Asia, after having multiplied from the initial light industry investment in those overseas places a decade or more earlier. The flood of money lubricated commerce in NYC and bid up real estate to such a high level that the hoodlums were simply priced out of the market. Entire neighborhoods gentrified, especially with middle class immigrants who are not used to owning cars and living in the suburbs.

    Giulianni's cleaning up of Time Square is precursor of eminent domain seizure for the sake of tax maximization: the street walkers were kicked out to make room for hotels that would host higher priced hookers. New Yorkers don't go to Time Square anymore; the place is now over-run by touritsts, with big international chain stores and billboards waiting for them. The place can be considered a "success" for maximizing city tax revenue, but it is hardly distinguishable from a central block in London, Tokyo or Hongkong. It's certainly not a place for city residents anymore, as all the family owned small shops that had been there for decades are almost all gone.

  10. @Wenzel,

    The gangs moved from New York to Baltimore is what I heard...from a Baltimore cop.

  11. Why doesn't he discuss this with his Rabbi? I'm sure his Rabbi will agree with him that the family unit is irrelevant in society today. This is why Jewish people gave up all their family oriented traditions because, well, they don't matter one bit. This is really an odd statement to come from a fellow Jew. The one thing that Jews IMO figured out a long, long time ago was the power of the family unit in building a healthy society. Jewish life is all about FAMILY! LOL He' can't be this f'n clueless.

  12. This really shows Krugmans true colors. I do not want to know where I would be in life without my Dad.