The Corner


As a recovering New Yorker and a current Washingtonian, I have no problem, in principle, with New York getting less money this year than in the five previous years. Prioritizing cuts both ways. NYC has gotten a disproportionately large amount of money in previous years. Presumably that money went toward plugging various security holes. At some point, those holes are supposed to get plugged and then you move on to other holes elsewhere, in NYC or outside of it. You don’t need to build a new concrete wall for City Hall every year. Once you  have one, you don’t need to buy it again for a while. The logic that says NYC’s allotment can’t be cut makes terror-preparedness into a continual subsidy instead of a grant.

Now, of course, that doesn’t mean there aren’t ongoing, year-over-year expenses for NYC’s security that the Feds should help defray. But, as Rich’s talking points suggest, the Feds are doing that. I know the process has been anything but rational, but again in principle it seems perfectly rational to say to Kansas City “Look, New York’s a fatter target so for the first five years after 9/11 we’re going to spend some of ‘your’ security money on them. Once we’ve got the Big Apple squared away, we can devote more resources to you.” The same applies to DC and LA and other more inviting terror targets.  

Jonah Goldberg — Jonah Goldberg holds the Asness Chair in Applied Liberty at the American Enterprise Institute and is a senior editor of National Review. His new book, The Suicide of The West, is on sale now.

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