Mayorof New York City seems to be on a mission to control size in our metropolis. His recent proposed ban on sodas and other sugary drinks more than 16 ounces has caused more than a bit of a stir.
Many have accused the mayor of over-stepping his authority. Same with the ban on food donation by ordinary Good Samaritans in the city to soup kitchens, where Bloomberg citing the need to monitor the salt, sugar and fat content of all foods given to the poor. Critics say the mayor and his food police have gone from the ridiculous to the absurd on this one, and I'm sure the hungry and homeless seeking a meal and much needed assistance would agree.
Now Bloomberg is at it again, taking the slogan "less is more" literally as he plans on "down-sizing" yet another area with his newly proposed "300 square foot homes" for New York residents. They say America is the land of excess and super-sized living, so maybe the billionaire mayor is trying to steer us on a path to conserving rather than over-using? Wonder if he is planning to live in one of those little boxes himself? Incidentally these micro-units will be 1/40th the size of one of the mayor's Upper East Side townhouses.
Space is quite limited in the crowded city and homes. Apartments already are on the small side compared to other areas across the country. Speaking at a press conference on Tuesday, Bloomberg called on architects to compete in a contest to see who would come up with innovative new designs of spaces small and compact to house more people and prevent the mass exodus to other spacious states with more affordable housing.
I do not understand this concept's goal of attracting more to the city, for if one can move cross-country where there is more "bang for the buck," why would even smaller, expensive apartments and homes appeal to the discerning buyer?
Is the mayor's target market young college grads only, for I cannot see who else 300 square-foot studio apartments would realistically attract. City life is exciting and has a plethora of social and cultural events to choose from, as well as having a kaleidoscope of ethnicity and diversity.
But downsizing is not what we need in the city, for New Yorkers already pay too much in rent, mortgages and other living expenses. To pay more for less is a misnomer. What the mayor needs to do is "down-size" the cost of living in the big city. Have some kind of rent control, adjustment of mortgage rates, cut food and transportation cost and then maybe more would find the city affordable and not want to make a mad stampede to the nearest exit.
Do you remember, a 2010 candidate for governor? If not, maybe you remember his hilarious slogan, "The rent is too damn high!" It was a point of much snickering and "Saturday Night Live" parody but he was right about the cost of living in NYC. Comedy aside, it really is too darn exorbitant.
We pay $4.50 for a round trip ride on the local subway, a $100 plus for a monthly metrocard, to use a system which has not upgraded to suit the rise in cost. The Long Island Railroad (LIRR) is more than twice times that amount. Meanwhile the Mass Transit Authority (MTA) top execs make millions and take home huge bonuses.
If you look at the rail system around the globe, China, Russia, Japan and others leave us in the dust in technological advances. In comparison, our trains look like the horse and buggy must have looked when our railroad system first made its debut.
When the president says we need to invest in our infrastructure including our subway systems, "the party of no" in Washington cried about excessive spending. If America cannot compete in the 21st century and beyond, what do they think our future and the future of our children will look like? Is it all going to be about reading in the history books of how great the U.S. once was?