New York Mayor Bill de Blasio told a journalist in September that he was in favor of a planned economy in his city and he was fairly certain that many of his constituents agreed with his view. In an interview with New York Magazine, he said that rules governing private property caused many of the problems with inequality seen in the Big Apple and elsewhere. It’s almost scary to see these words in print; we’re not sure if even self-described “democratic socialist” Bernie Sanders has ever traveled this far into communist territory with his rhetoric.
“What’s been hardest is the way our legal system is structured to favor private property,” de Blasio said. “I think people all over this city, of every background, would like to have the city government be able to determine which building goes where, how high it will be, who gets to live in it, what the rent will be.
“I think there’s a socialistic impulse, which I hear every day, in every kind of community, that they would like things to be planned in accordance to their needs,” de Blasio continued. “And I would, too.”
He continued, apparently taking a short break from perusing this month’s issue of The Daily Worker to give his thoughts to New York Magazine. He said it was a shame that the law made it difficult for Americans to do away with property rights.
“Unfortunately, what stands in the way of that is hundreds of years of history that have elevated property rights and wealth to the point that that’s the reality that calls the tune on a lot of development,” de Blasio said.
“If I had my druthers,” he continued, “the city government would determine every single plot of land, how development would proceed. And there would be very stringent requirements around income levels and rents. That’s a world I’d love to see, and I think what we have, in this city at least, are people who would love to have the New Deal back, on one level. They’d love to have a very, very powerful government, including a federal government, involved in directly addressing their day-to-day reality.”
We don’t doubt for a second that de Blasio is right about one thing: There are a lot of people in New York City (and Chicago, and Berkeley, CA, to name a few) who would love to see outright Communism take root in the United States. Do away with private property, do away with private production, and put the government in charge of everything. Everyone gets a job, everyone gets fed, and everyone gets along in a rosy utopia filled with sunny skies and brown shirts. And as long as you don’t mind sacrificing the fundamental human need for freedom, it really will be wonderful.
You know, just like it was wonderful for the USSR, the people of Communist China, Venezuela, Cuba…and so on…and so forth…