The notion is that, in general, Politicians in New York City are dumber than a sack of wet dog crap.
Case in point: a local man attempted suicide by jumping from the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge here on Staten Island (pictured).
In and of itself, this is not an uncommon occurrence. I would hazard to guess that the number of suicides, both successful and attempted, involving a nosedive from a New York City bridge to be somewhere in the hundreds every year.
And in this case, as in probably most others, a police officer quickly arrived on the scene, and aided by another, off-duty officer, the two saved this poor man who probably had every intention of giving New York Harbor a great big kiss at terminal velocity. The Verrazano was, at one time, the world's largest suspension bridge (2 1/2 miles long), and was built so high -- to accommodate the largest cargo ships of the day -- that it actually had to be curved in the center in order to follow the contours of the Earth.
Hitting the water from that height is bound to sting. I can't ever recall of hearing someone who took a swan dive off the VZN having ever surviving the ordeal. It's a long way down.
Now, I certainly hope that the man in question is alright; we here at the Asylum do not advocate suicide...unless you're a democrat, in which case, I'll pay for your bullet, rope, or rat poison, or might be persuaded to drive the dump truck that "accidentally" runs you over four times (I'm joking...maybe).
We certainly hope that the attempt was of the I-Lost-My-Job/I-Lost-My-Wife/I'm-Flat-Broke-and-Desperately-Need-Help type, and that the man didn't attempt this because The Voices told him his neighbor's cat was the anti-Christ.
We hope this man gets all the help he can.
But, here's the lesson: in this article we learn that the City of New York has gone to great trouble, and presumably great expense, to install suicide prevention phones on the VZN Bridge.Considering the relationship that New York City has to Staten Island (we refer to it as "The Forgotten Borough". The City likes to take our tax money, but hates to actually spend any of it here, if it can be avoided) it figures that if there are these phones on the VZN, then they must be on every bridge in New York.
And then you learn that, since installation, the phones have been used exactly...zero times.
Considering that this is New York City, you can bet your sweet potato that every last one of these phones that have never been used cost about what one would expect to pay for a replacement kidney, probably is maintained by a battalion of overpaid/underworked unionized slobs who believe they have the right to suck the lifeblood out of the taxpayer, and necessitated the employment of three shifts of suicide councilors who apparently have nothing to do but sit around and wait for the phones to ring.
I can't wait for Mayor Bloomdouche...errr...Bloomberg to have to resort to the Obama Defense, vis-a-vis a demonstrably useless. probably super-expensive system:
This expensive colossal failure is simply the result of bad messaging; you peasants are too stupid to know what’s good for you; it’s all bad public relations; The Public is misinformed by FoxNews about the utility of the system; it’s the Republican’s fault; I inherited the system from my predecessor, the dog ate my homework, yada, yada, yada.
That seems to be the stock reply to probing questions like: How much did this piece of crap cost? How much is it still costing us? How do you justify the expense, considering the result of zero saved lives? Which one of your rich friends got the contract?
Why, it's almost as bad as Solyndra. But, I digress...
I'm thinking the phones all blare that same, annoying, canned message:
Please continue to hold; your call is important to us, and will be answered in the order in which it was received by the next available operator. Por servicios in Espanol, por favor presione dos...
The money probably spent on these things could have been better spent elsewhere, one thinks. Certainly on better mental health services (good luck with that: in this city, municipal mental health services are a lower priority on the list than "fill potholes on Staten Island") which might actually be available to help people when they need them. In the end, the suicide phone line on the bridge, while a lovely idea, was made redundant and rendered useless by a couple of cops -- one off-duty -- who were diligent, brave, and dedicated enough to do their duty. And that has always been the case.
Fortunately, here in New York, where everything else is going to hell in a hand basket, and you can't eat a hot dog without garnering a criminal indictment, we still have people like these two officers. It's because of people like them that this city is still livable, and our lives are made richer and safer for having them. I thank them.
This story -- even with it's happy ending -- just goes to show that if there's any money, anywhere, available to waste, our politicians will find a way to help accomplish that mission in the most incredibly bizarre and mindless ways.
Fewer expensive, unused, super-high-tech phones that no one knows about and which never get used, please; more basic mental health services for those who need them.