Signs Of The Time, Part 28

If I were New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, I wouldn’t be worrying about the possibility (inevitability?) of disenfranchised Americans rioting.

It’s the return of the squeegee men to the Big Apple I’d be concerned with.

From Bill Hutchinson and Edgar Sandoval of New York City’s Daily News today:

Squeegee men, the aggressive panhandlers who wash your car windows whether you want them to or not, are back.

Armed with buckets and $5 squeegees, a squad of men waded into stalled Times Square traffic Sunday to lather up windshields, swipe them clean and beckon for tips from drivers – some annoyed by the intrusion…

For some, they’re a powerful symbol that the busted economy is bringing back the bad old days.

“I’m walking and I see a man cleaning a car window. It took me back in time. I had to do a double take to make sure I was seeing right,” said Reggie Thomas, 44.

I’m guessing Bloomberg will take a page out of his predecessor’s playbook to deal with the squeegee scourge. Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani wrote in his autobiography Leadership:

We attacked crime immediately, but we knew it would take time to show results. Reducing the number of crimes would not be enough: people had to see improvement. We had to get people to feel safe.

That’s how the idea for addressing the squeegee man problem appeared. There were men who would wander up to a car stopped in traffic, spray the windshield, & wipe it down. After the unsolicited “cleaning,” the man would request payment.

My belief was that treating small crimes was a way to establish lawful, civil behavior & a feeling of safety. The police chief said we lacked a legal basis to move them as long as they were not threatening drivers or demanding money. I said, how about that they are jaywalking. When they stepped off the curb they violated the law. Then, in giving them tickets, you could investigate whether there were outstanding warrants & so on.

In under a month, we reduced the problem dramatically. New Yorkers loved it & so did all the visitors who brought money into the city.

Here in the Windy City, I’ve haven’t seen too many squeegee guys around (I-55 exit onto Cicero Avenue comes to mind, but that was some time ago). I have to wonder if it’s only a matter of time before they come out en masse here.


Hutchinson, Bill and Sandoval, Edgar. “Squeegees return as New York City is awash in windshield swipers in sign of (desperate) times.” Daily News. 19 Sep. 2011. (
times_under_squeege__again.html). 19 Sep. 2011.

Giuliani, Rudolph. Leadership. New York City: Hyperion, 2002.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Monday, September 19th, 2011 Crime, Government, Public Safety, Signs Of The Time

1 Comment to Signs Of The Time, Part 28

  1. wonder how they got $5 for the squeegee – also seems a little too coordinated for the panhandlers I encounter… wonder what else is on the horizon…

  2. Archy Leach on September 20th, 2011

Leave a comment

Survival And Prosperity
Est. 2010, Chicagoland, USA
Christopher E. Hill, Editor

Successor to
"The Most Hated Blog On Wall Street"
(Memorial Day Weekend 2007-2010)

This Project Dedicated to St. Jude
Patron Saint of Desperate Situations

Please Rate this Blog HERE


Advertising Disclosure here. "Code Needed"=Promo Code Found On Advertiser Website. Ad Captions Last Updated 7/20/16.
Blade HQ Knives New! Blade HQ Reviewed HERE.
Buy Gold And Silver Coins Silver Rounds 69¢ Over Spot Any Quantity; Secondary Market 100 Oz. Silver Bars 39¢ Over Spot Per Troy Oz., Any Quantity, Free Shipping. BGASC Reviewed HERE.
BullionVault World's Largest Online Investment Gold Service & Part-Owned By World Gold Council. Reviewed HERE.
Free 4-Week Emergency Food Kit w/ 3-Month Emergency Food Supply; Big Savings On "Deal Of The Day" Page. Reviewed HERE.
Survival Titles Save 20% Bladed Weapons, Combat, Firearms, Martial Arts, Military, Police, Preparedness, Self-Defense, Shooting, Survival Titles. Paladin Press Reviewed HERE.
World's First Bulletproof Baseball Cap Only $129; Bulletproof Ceramic Plate (NIJ Level III Stand-Alone) Only $169; Bulletproof Backpack/Messenger Bag Panel Only $99. BulletSafe Reviewed HERE.



Prepper Website

RSS Chris Hill’s Other Blog: Offshore Safe Deposit Boxes

  • Related Reading: Strong Demand In Germany For Safe Deposit Boxes
    Back in March and May of this year I blogged about Germans looking to safe deposit boxes to preserve their wealth in a negative interest rate environment. Tuesday night I came across a related article by The Sovereign Society’s editorial director JL Yastine on the Sovereign Investor Daily website. Discussing the subject of negative rates, […]
  • Related Reading: Gold Popular With British Post Brexit
    Earlier today I came across an interesting article on about the popularity of physical gold with British citizens in the wake of the historic “Brexit” vote. Clara Denina reported this morning: Dealers are seeing an unprecedented amount of interest in gold, much of it from first-time buyers, to take advantage of its role as […]
  • Related Reading: Japanese Gold Owners Look To Switzerland For Storage, Protection
    Switzerland still has significant appeal for Asians who own gold. Masumi Suga and Ichiro Suzuki reported on the Bloomberg website July 7: Japanese investors are buying gold to store in Switzerland because of negative interest rates and fears the yen will depreciate as the government grapples with the heaviest public debt burden in the developed […]
  • Related Reading: A Visit To Baoku Treasury, The World’s Largest Private, Non-Bank Safe Deposit Box Facility
    Back on May 18, I blogged about the recent opening of Baoku Treasury, the world’s largest private, non-bank safe deposit box facility. I haven’t come across that much material about the Shanghai, China, private vault in my research, so it was with great pleasure that I spotted an article about Baoku on the Sixth Tone […]
  • Related Reading: Robert W. Wood’s ‘Reporting Cash, Gold And Safety Deposit Boxes On FBARs?’
    Tonight I happened to read an article published on the Forbes website last Thursday entitled “Reporting Cash, Gold And Safety Deposit Boxes On FBARs?” The contributing author was Robert W. Wood, a San Francisco, California-based tax lawyer. It’s an insightful read on a complicated subject, where even Wood noted: Filing without thinking carefully about such […]