In answer to New Orleans’ burgeoning crime problem Mayor Cantrell made an important observation.
“Nothing stops a bullet like a job.”
Her point is well taken, but one has to wonder why then the City of New Orleans refuses to implement policies that would make her observation come true. Just the opposite it seems. For instance, how many citizens are aware that at a time when crime is soaring the recent budget actions of the Council have resulted in a substantial defunding of the NOPD. Not many I would think, but the impact will be devastating.
The City Council is really good at adopting far Left ideas and policies that are an anathema to business. They ignore the history that is the decades long economic decline of our once prosperous city. They seem to believe that business has to be in New Orleans, or that businesses owe it to the city to shoulder the burden of taxes and poor services while in a community that offers no critical mass of economic activity.
So, let us for once think out of the box, let us elevate economic prosperity and good jobs to the top of our priorities, instead of as an afterthought. Let us hire 400 more cops and fully fund the police. Let us insist that the DA stop selectively enforcing the law and that elected judges not feel sorry for the criminals that of their own free will place the rest of us at risk. Let us make a major portion of the city a Tax-Free Zone, not unlike international Free Trade Zones. Let us cut out spending on feel good NGOs, political favorites, and bureaucracy and then invest the money into infrastructure and schools. Let us cut out all the meaningless regulations and make NOLA a city that businesspeople will tell their friends and competitors how profitable it is to operate in. Let us change everything that we have been doing and make New Orleans the free-market capitalism Shangri La of the western world.
Then Madame Mayor, your observation will become a reality.
Do I expect any of this to happen? Not a chance! But by not understanding and changing our ways, the mayor’s comment about jobs saving lives is just another meaningless talking point. Businesses do not have to be in New Orleans, businesses do not have to open in areas of increasing poverty and crime, poverty though nowhere mandated will continue to eat away at our vitality as it becomes the rule and not the exception. Depending on Federal handouts is not a substitute for have a viable economy. These are the realities, and it is folly to ignore them by trying to legislate equity.
Unless the philosophy of the leadership of the city changes to one that will do anything in or out of the box to attract job creating businesses, we should not expect improvement in quality of life or any change in the trajectory of increasing poverty and crime.
The Mayor was right, but is anyone listening? Is she?