Mayor Bloomberg finally came out today and suggested a pretty radical thought. This Staten Island area is so screwed up and months away from fixing....that folks might just have to pick-up and leave. Numbers? Well....he suggested thirty to forty thousand. In reality? I'd be guessing nearer to seventy thousand folks moving.
When you go back to examine Katrina....there was a point about three weeks after the hurricane that folks began to realize there was no practical way of rebuilding New Orleans within six months, or even a year.
Yes, there's a hearty group of folks who did stay in New Orleans. But the reality is that almost 140k people left New Orleans....never to come back. Some went off to Baton Rouge. A good portion of folks went to Houston, Texas....never to return. New Orleans has never gone back to it's numbers prior to Katrina.
Staten Island? It has a population of 470k people....just a stone's throw from New York City. The guys with $700k houses will have the right insurance and survive. The guys who had houses built in the 1950s and had lousy insurance....will wake up around Thanksgiving and realize there's no real fix or solution to help them through the winter. Plans will be made to leave.
So this brings me to pondering. Folks from my home state of Bama tend to be the first folks to extend out a hand and welcome folks in a pretty tough situation. It might be time for Bama to extend itself out to Staten Island folks, and kinda say we'd welcome you to the 'promised land', if you did need a place.
The truth is....we have a lot of oddball characters in Bama....but the Staten Island folks have just as many. It might be an interesting turn of events to bring in fifteen thousand New Yorkers.
We could greet Tony and the guys....offering up some rib-eyes and bar-b-q. We could fix up those jersey shore gals with Karl down in Red Bay.....who claims Bama gals are not sensitive enough to his feelings. We could bring real Italian pizza to Huntsville and make grown men weep over how lousy Pizza Hut really is. We could introduce Pauly and Rizzo to the single gals down at the Baptist church in search of good honest men.
I realize this is a radical idea to some Bama folks. But these are folks down on their luck. And if you ever got yourself into a fair mess.....a guy from Staten Island tends to know various tricks to help get you out of trouble (maybe illegally, but you don't care).