When I was first starting out as an entrepreneur in the early 80s, I had an Apple II product, and Apple was in serious trouble, judging by the stories in the press. I asked my lead investor what to make of it. Should we not ship our Apple product and port to the IBM PC? He asked what Apple's sales were. About a billion dollars. He said you can safely continue, companies with a billion dollars in sales don't disappear. He was right, of course. A year later they shipped the first Mac, and we were on board for the boom in 1986. Had we switched in 1983, we would have missed the boom, and been lost in the crowd of second-tier PC companies. On the Mac we had a chance to rise to the top, and we did.#
The point of this story is that NYC has 8 million people. Most of them are staying. Many of the people with the means to leave are leaving. The business environment in NY will change. All that office space will be used for something. Nature abhors a vacuum. And NYC will have a lot of space, to be used creatively, we expect.#
Also, the virus will weaken, like a hurricane as it moves inland. It won't go away, but the major damage is done as it makes landfall. At least judging from the 1918 pandemic. It was two years of hell, but the worst of it were the first waves, as it circled the world. In all likelihood that will also be the pattern of Covid-19. And remember, they never got a vaccine for the 1918 virus. It seems like we will have one, or more, and they will blunt the damage the virus does.#
The idea that NYC is dead -- that's just opportunistic linkbait. That's who the author is. Famous as a promoter of himself. There isn't a whole lot of thought or science behind his theory that NYC is over. As with billion dollar PC manufacturers in 1983, cities of 8 million don't just disappear. #
Like the world we left behind in March of this year, however, the old NY is gone. But there will be a new New York. There probably isn't another city on earth so capable of reinventing itself. In the two generations my family has been in NYC, the city has already reinvented itself a few times. My mother, herself an immigrant, lived to have her world disrupted by a new wave of immigration. It's a good thing, even a great thing. #
And humans are a resilient species. We get accustomed to new realities very quickly. We'll do fine. And NYC will rise again. #
Last update: Monday August 17, 2020; 12:25 PM EDT.
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