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Op-Ed: Our Elected Officials Couldn’t Manage a Lemonade Stand


June 17, 2021 Op-Ed By John J. Ciafone

You don’t have to have an Economics Degree to understand the common sense principle that you can’t spend more money than you have.

Little children learn this first hand, by saving as much as they can for the future. Children also know that you can’t spend more than what you have.

Yet, year after year, our city council and mayor are in a race to outspend the prior fiscal years—even though there is no guarantee that the money will ever be there.

The most recent budget proposed by the mayor—well over $98 billion—fails to take into account the money sent from the federal government due to COVID, without which the city and state would be reeling in bankruptcy.

Instead of proposing a lean and responsible budget, they are reckless and careless in driving the city into further debt and off the cliff.

Our city council wants to defund the police, hurting the very same communities that rely on safety in the streets, in the parks, in the schools and on the subways. All the while, increasing the entire city budget and increasing funding for other city agencies.

They are hell bent in destroying our city.

John Ciafone, candidate for the 22nd Council District (Photo: Queens Post)

The city’s out of control taxation, fines and fees is causing a demographic population shift away from New York City to states like Florida and Texas. In fact, Florida has double our state population and operates with half of our state budget. People who move to Florida can reduce their income taxes by up to one-third.

There is a radical justice equity ideology among our electeds (to tax the heck out of the rich and the big corporations) failing to understand that they can easily use their feet to leave us and cause ever decreasing revenue collections as a result of their departure.

We saw this in Long Island City when Amazon was chased out by our elected officials; devastating collateral businesses and causing tremendous job loss and opportunities.

Long are the days of Democrats like John F. Kennedy, who believed that the rising tides would raise all of the ships. Supporting businesses and companies meant creating good paying jobs and opportunities for other businesses. Yet, today’s Democrats believe that the rich are evil and that corporations are demonic and that we must take from Peter to give to Paul.

More pernicious is the real truth. The budget gets bigger and bigger on the backs of the working class to feed the ugly parasites.

The special interests, contract bidders and lobbyists are the parasites that feed on the ever increasing public debt. They are like Christmas ornaments attached to the tree and our elected officials, who pander to these special interests, unions, contract bidders and lobbyists for increasing donations and endorsements.

That is why we can all learn from our children who can successfully manage a lemonade stand while our electeds run us into the ground.

John J Ciafone is a candidate for NYC Council District 22 (Astoria). He is running as a Democrat in the June 22 primary.

email the author: [email protected]


Click for Comments 
"They are hell bent in destroying our city"

Always question someone who decries politicians in extreme (and grammatically incorrect) terms while running for political office. Also question the sincerity of someone saying city overspending causes our streets to be unsafe while holding prime real estate vacant and claiming tax breaks on vacant storefronts that cause blight. Finally question anyone who compares our city and state negatively to Florida and Texas because of taxes. You’re running in the wrong municipality, buddy! Caban will wipe the floor with you.

What a joke

This is pretty rich coming from the “businessman” who refused to renew the lease for an affordable neighborhood movie theatre, a great bar/restaurant, and a local bank branch, so he could let them sit vacant for years.


I’ve heard that this guy is getting Bernie Sanders and AOC’s stamp of approval 🙂


Ciafone is the one who bought and leaves empty the Queens Blvd movie theater and other businesses near 43rd Street in Sunnyside. It is speculation. We lost three small businesses. He continues to hurt Sunnyside.

But he is correct regarding the business abilities of the elected officials.

Apparently money grows on trees

Not a big Ciafone fan but he is right.

Governments are like spoiled teenagers with daddy’s unlimited credit card. There is no reason for them to spend wisely. They can binge spend on any nonsense they like and pass the bill to someone else.

In the case of politicians, it’s the taxpayer who get’s stuck with the bill. The public debt is so astronomical that future taxpayers that haven’t even been borneven born yet will be paying for it.

Now THAT really is “taxation without representation.”


Newman is right. One thing he leaves out is this pandemic has shown that working remotely works and some people will not be going back to the city. On the plus side this means less crowded trains. On the negative it means lower ridership revenue, fewer people spending money in the city, less rental space needed, and many workers in the support industry (deli, janitors, maintenance, etc) won’t be needed. Many don’t want to go back to their old commute, the new social environment, and the sinking quality of life. Even if just a small percentage like 10% doesn’t return it will have an impact but realistically it will probably be closer to 20%. A bad situation was made worse by politicians and nobody seems to call it out. If you have the option to leave good for you but the rest will feel the squeeze and there’s nothing they can do.

Don't kid yourself

Unfortunately, Mr. Ciafone left his property on Queens Boulevard – where the old movie theater is – abandoned and now it has become an eyesore and invitation for TROUBLE MAKERS to post vile messages. He should practice what he preaches but he is basically correct. Don’t kid yourself: many people will never return to the office which means that the delis, restaurants, clothing stores, coffee carts – will suffer.


why waste money on the mta and restaurants when you can save at least 3 hours a day in commuting and getting ready to go to work. its better to just work from home. more relaxing, nobody to sit over your shoulder, no sick people to give you a disease. its just a better overall quality life without the office.


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