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A Tale of Two Cities

No, it's not Paris and London, it's Salamanca, NY and...Salamanca, NY.  I can personally attest to the city's "shabbiness."  At Townhall, h/t Patricia at the NYS Moms group of As a Mom (over there in the right sidebar):

...shabbiness blankets what could be a quaint town bounded by a river, a New York state park and a national forest. Garish “Nation-owned” cigarette outlets and gas stations produce a city drawn by Norman Rockwell but touched-up by Jackson Pollock.

“I had a professor who once said, ‘Simple way to understand the importance of private property: Have you ever washed a rental car?’ ” says political science professor Lara Brown. Salamanca, she says, “strikes precisely at the issue. When you don't own, most people don't care.”

[....] “[The citizens of Salamanca and the Seneca Nation] are now paying for the past mistakes and incompetence of the federal government.”

Their plight is compounded by the all-too-familiar pattern of many towns and cities in the Northeast: Over several decades, the Rust Belt’s state and local governments have failed to enact job-sustaining tax policies and, more important, have failed to invest in the infrastructure needed to compete with other regions of the country.

The result, in Salamanca as elsewhere, is sweeping, perhaps irreversible, economic and social devastation.

Well.  We've blogged here numerous times on these very topics—the importance of private property, the ultimate destructiveness of big government, the negative impact of state and local tax policies unfriendly to both business and individuals (most recently here, here, and here)...and here it all is, in microcosm, in one small city in NYS.

Read the whole thing.  The comments are worth reading, too—one commenter called New York "The Vampire State."  Wish I'd thought of it.

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