Sunday, April 03, 2005

More on Splitting-Up New York State

As many of you probably already know, I feel that upstate New York is broken economically, socially and politically. In a post I wrote a couple of months ago, I argued that that the region's best hope was to become its own state and decide its own fate. Well, I decided to seek out related opinions on the subject via the handy-dandy web site

Ambition, Impatience and Sloth favors a split of New York from a New York City perspective: On this blog, a poster named David agrees with a New York Press columnist who argues that NYC and the surrounding metropolitan area would benefit from a government more in tune with local concerns. In fact, he almost seems to want New York City to separate itself from all of America, not just upstate New York. Therefore, New York City could be like how Hong Kong used to be.

Splitting New York State into two states is far-fetched enough as it is, so thinking that enough people hate their own country to leave the United States is even more ludicrous. Thankfully, I think David is just engaging in some bitter hyperpole over the results of 2004's elections.

Over at, Luis wonders what name a new upstate New York state might have: I figure a good list of potential names would include Niagara, West York, Hudson, or Adirondack. A poster on his site also argues that upstate New York is actually quite Democratic. This is wrong. While many of the large cities might vote for Democrats normally, the surrounding suburbs, the small towns and the rural areas are much more Republican than downstate. This is why Pataki and D'Amato were able to win statewide office: they did very well in the more conservative upstate areas. I'm not saying that upstate New York is like Utah, but it certainly isn't like Massachusetts either.

Unfutz brings up some interesting facts about the whole dividing New York State debate: He reminds us that the Norman Mailer/Jimmy Breslin somewhat unserious-ticket ran with a platform that included making New York City its own state. Also apparently there was a show on NYC's PBS station called the "51st State" awhile back.

If the people in the city feel that they would be better off managing their own affairs, more power to them. Their hunger for more government services and higher taxes would be better fed by a new state made up of NYC, Westchester and Long Island. They can then enjoy the 3.5 billion dollars they think they are losing to upstate. New York City can also try to find some way to get affordable electricity after they close down Indian Point and also stop getting cheap electricity from the "hicks" up near Niagara Falls. Upstate New York can then enjoy more responsive government, competitive presidential elections, lower taxes and its own identity.

So, basically everybody wins! Hopefully, residents in both areas will soon realize this fact. I am not going to be holding my breath until this happens, however...

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