Broken Windows: Lefty scheme to decriminalize NY bus fare jumping leads to a quarter of riders not paying at all

Leftists, particularly in Bill De Blasio's New York, are always trying to shove people into public transportation. Never mind that the subways are full of robbers, gropers, stinkers, and pushers, never mind that the public buses are horrible to ride, crowded, jerky, slow, complete with atrocious customer service. (An exception, of course, is made for illegals, with drivers licenses now being issued to that crowd, the better to get their votes). But everyone else is expected to ride the bus. 

And sure enough, bus conditions are pretty horrible even as New York's bus service is now losing money.

The problem? A quarter of the commuters crowding up and sometimes stinking up the bus aren't paying the fare. Here's the New York Post, on the case:

More and more riders are boarding city buses without paying the fare, according to new MTA data for the first quarter of 2019.

The cheapskates run most rampant on local bus routes, where one in every four riders skirts the fare, representing a 35-percent spike from the same time period in 2018.

Turnstile-jumping on the subways is also on the rise, though it remains far less frequent at approximately 3.9 percent of riders, the data, released ahead of the agency’s Monday board meeting, shows.

By comparison, transit agencies around the globe average fare-evasion rates of 2.1 percent on subways and 4.1 percent on buses.

And why not? Last February, the Manhattan prosecutor's office - the one that is obsessed with finding some, any, political crime on President Trump, one that he can't pardon -- has skipped out on the idea of prosecuting bus fare jumpers. Too unimportant for them, see, given that it involves only the commutes of the little people. Not as romantic and glorious as finding the holy grail that can take down President Trump, which is what they're working on. These are the same monsters who tried to put ailing, wheelchair-bound, elderly Paul Manafort in solitary (for his own protection) on the notorious Rikers Island lockup in a bid to torture him into cooperating with them to Get Trump. It was so bad even Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez spoke out against them.

Now they're trashing the bus company for failing to do the job people pay them to do.

Here's a bit of their beyond-creepy press release, so very proud of themselves for no longer prosecuting bus fare jumpers:

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today released statistics pertaining to the first year of the Office’s policy to decline to prosecute subway fare evasion cases. Already, the policy has drastically reduced Manhattan farebeating prosecutions, resulting in a 95.55% decrease in subway fare evasion arraignments in January compared to the previous year. Additionally, the D.A.’s policy, taken together with subsequently-implemented New York City Police Department enforcement reforms, has resulted in an 89% reduction in Manhattan subway fare evasion arrests.

“The criminal justice system is not a collection agency, and when it acts like one, it criminalizes poverty and leaves New Yorkers with lifelong records that ruin their chances to escape poverty,” said District Attorney Vance. “One year ago, informed by intensive in-house research and a robust pilot program, our Office exercised our discretion to spare non-violent New Yorkers accused of this $2.75 offense from the unnecessary consequences that accompany criminal prosecution, whether it’s ineligibility for loans or public college, or even deportation. The results show that our City can address quality-of-life infractions civilly and rationally without sacrificing our safety.”

What a load of lies that is, and if you read further, it just gets worse.  The Post says they've since given some money to the transit system for cameras, but what is the use of that other than to see -- and do nothing meaningful -- about fare jumpers? The press release states that now they refer fare jumpers to social services. Not surprisingly, they've now got more of them, and a quarter of the bus riders have now decided it's a sucker's mission to pay. Now they're bankrupting the bus system, costing it more than 1% of its budget for a $240 million loss as fare evasion soars. Proud of yourselves, jackasses?

And they're also ignorant as dirt about what they're doing here, which is feeding the James Q. Wilson "broken window" theory of how crime spreads and places become hellholes. As leftists, they've never liked that theory. But way back in the 1990s, then-mayor Rudolf Giuliani proved that the theory worked, targeting squeegee men, fare jumpers, and anyone who would let a broken window just stay there, serving as a dinner triangle for more crime to be committed. The result was marvelous, Giuliani made New York a city worth going to again, a place where you could walk around at 3 a.m. in the morning in the South Bronx (I often did) and ... not a thing would ever happen.

Today, it's dump. And ending the prosecution of fare jumpers is precisely why. The left has been all over the place yelling about how bad it is to target 'non violent crimes' and with New York's leftward shift, electing Bill De Blasio and tolerating the Manhattan district attorney's office, the result speaks for itself.

Image credit: Metropolitan Transit Authority of the State of New York // CC BY-SA 2.0


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