New Yorkers are in a big shemozzle this month over a harebrained scheme to put a dangerous mountain bike under the tush of every tourist, teen and thug with an ax to grind. The city is literally erupting in collisions and traffic jams as these people take to the streets 24 hours a day. Hizzoner Mike Bloomberg, New York City’s bad boy billionaire mayor, devised the plan and citizens are already pushing back. You see, Meshugena Mike is funding this whole narrischkeit with taxpayer money. Public parks have been bulldozed to make room for the enterprise. Bicycle docking stations are displacing private parking spots and disrupting the normal human foot traffic of apartment buildings. Elderly residents have complained that they now feel imprisoned behind a “Berlin Wall,” terrified of creeping out of their homes to navigate narrow sidewalks overrun by speeding cyclers.
I guess Mayor Mike is taking that passage of the Talmud to heart: “If one man says to thee, ‘Thou art a donkey,’ pay no heed. If two speak thus, purchase a saddle.” It looks like Hizzoner sees his citizens as donkeys now! Does he want us to saddle up and sweat to death as we carry our cargoes to and fro like some kind of lost pack animal in the desert! It likely doesn’t matter much for a man who travels the city by private helicopter or a fleet of black Cadillac Escalade SUVs, but for normal New Yorkers this is a nightmare!
On a sidenote: One perplexing aspect of this whole thing is that the bikes available are 100% girl’s bikes. Makes you sort of wonder about the target audience of this publicly-financed project!
But this gets even worse if you want to drive in New York City. You see, Meshugena Mike in all his wisdom is actually dividing up the streets and creating special “bicycle-only lanes” that are turning Gotham into a traffic jam horror show! The people behind the whole Citibank Bike scheme must have lobbied hard for that one. What sort of public accountability is being done about the bank’s involvement anyway? They must be minting money off this one now that the public is being forced to pay over a hundred dollars a year for it! And do you know who else suffers? The taxi cab drivers. They have less road to drive on and now they’re overwhelmed by all these inexperienced bicyclists causing fender benders and generally disobeying stop lights. What about their rights to earn an honest wage? Who knows, maybe making the yellow cab obsolete is all part of the Bloomberg plan.
I’ve talked to friends and relatives in the Big Apple, and what many are upset about is talk that this is just part of a broader push toward urban socialism. Certainly it’s nice to teach children to share, but to have a city-wide program that is owned by the government and managed by the bureaucrats flies in the face of private ownership. Don’t we, as Americans, have the right to own private property? Shouldn’t working toward that sort of ownership be one of the hallmarks of our society? Without it, how does capitalism even work? How will our children be motivated if they expect big government to provide every little thing for them, from their bicycles to their mini-sodas?
If you’ve ever seen a photo of communist China or Vietnam, you’ll know that those people rarely own cars. They have been denied that option by the government and instead, they’re forced to ride cheap, shaky bicycles. This is the basis for Bloomberg’s “bike sharing mandate.” Not only is it dangerous, it’s anti-democratic. Sorry, but in the United States owning a car is part of our national heritage and it’s one of our basic rights (heck, they should include THAT in the Constitution!).
All I can say is that I’m sick, sick, sick of this donkey show! Let’s close with a few more wise words from the Talmud: “Never expose yourself unnecessarily to danger; a miracle may not save you… and if it does, it will be deducted from your share of luck or merit.”