Posted on | July 18, 2014 | 57 Comments
Twenty billion dollars — by my calculations, that’s what it would cost to solve the problem of the Gaza Strip.
The population of Gaza is estimated at slightly more than 1.8 million people. So if we figure $10,000 for every man, woman and child in Gaza, that’s $18,000,000,000, give or take a few hundred million dollars. Add $2 billion for administrative expenses.
The price of a round-trip commercial airline ticket from Tel Aviv to New York, Chicago or Los Angeles is about $2,000. So the cost of transporting the entire population of Gaza to the United States would be less than $4 billion. (Even though these would be one-way trips, you’d have to pay round-trip fare to cover the cost of sending empty planes back to Tel Aviv to pick up more Palestinians.)
Having spent $4,000,000,000 to fly 1.8 million Palestinians from Gaza to America, we would then give the head of each family a check for $8,000 for every man, woman and child. “Mom, dad and three kids? Here’s your check for $40,000. Welcome to America!”
Or imagine the young Palestinian bachelor arriving at LAX, picking up his $8,000 check as he leaves the airport. He calls a cab, books a week’s stay at the Holiday Inn ($133 a night, or less than $1,000 for the week) and still has $7,000 left to help him find his first apartment and look for a job. He could spend $12 for a CD to help him learn English, buy himself a laptop computer for less than $400 — of course, he’s shopping Amazon links at my blog, as a gesture of gratitude to the visionary genius who thought up this brilliant peace plan — and even after he pays the first month’s rent on his new apartment, he still has two or three thousand bucks left to tide him over.
This plan would not merely bring peace — by completely depopulating Gaza — but it would also be an economic stimulus, by the logic of the Obama administration. I mean, they pissed away $800 billion on the 2009 “stimulus” bill, so what’s another $20 billion? Twenty billion dollars is a drop in the bucket. The federal budget for fiscal year 2014 was $3.8 trillion; $20 billion is less than 1% of that.
“But wait a minute,” says the skeptic. “Aren’t you underestimating the potential economic impact of all these new Gaza immigrants?”
Haters gotta hate. Sure, there are xenophobic racists who resent the cost of public services for impoverished immigrants.
If a few hundred Palestinians were to settle in suburban Minneapolis, for example, the local school system would have to absorb the cost of educating their kids, who don’t speak English and may have trouble adjusting to American cultural norms. There might also be costs in terms of police, courts and prisons to deal with the occasional “honor killing” of teenage Palestinian girls who start dressing and behaving like typical American teenage girls. (“What do you mean, you kissed a girl and you liked it? Whore! Infidel!”) And, yes, you hateful bigots probably think the new Gaza refugees will take advantage of the welfare system — food stamps, Medicaid, public housing, etc. — the same way you think other Third World immigrants take advantage of the welfare system.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Republican Party leadership say otherwise. They keep telling us that an unrestrained flood of impoverished immigrants who don’t speak English is a net benefit to our national economy, no matter what the impact may be in the local communities where the immigrants settle.
So if a certain neighborhood in your hometown becomes “Little Gaza” — where all the signs on the stores and restaurants are written in Arabic, where all the women and girls are wearing the hijab — this is a small price to pay in terms of the wondrous gains to the U.S. economy that the open-borders lobby keeps telling us about.
We’ll have to ignore the Islamophobic racists, just like we’ll ignore the cheapskates who begrudge a piddling $20 billion to resettle the population of Gaza to America, and don’t listen to those economists (probably subsidized by the Koch Brothers) who criticize my peace plan in terms of “opportunity costs,” blah blah blah.
No, if we really want peace in Gaza, my plan is the only way to go. And once we’ve flown the entire population to America, what do we do with the 139 square miles (88,960 acres) of uninhabited Gaza?
We sell it to Sheldon Adelson.
The Las Vegas casino mogul’s net worth is $37 billion. If you figure the cost of land in Gaza at $10,000 per acre, Adelson could buy the whole place for less than $900 million. Gaza has 30 miles of prime Mediterranean coastline, and in just a few years Adelson could turn Gaza into an international resort destination — luxury hotels, casinos, shopping centers, condos, amusement parks, etc.
Skeptics — why do I always have to bother explaining stuff to you guys? — may wonder: If you’ve completely depopulated Gaza by flying all the people to America, where will Sheldon Adelson find workers to build these new beachfront resorts? Where will he find employees to run the hotels, casinos, restaurants, water slides and roller coasters?
Simple: Bus ’em in from the West Bank.
Two birds with one stone, so to speak.
The wonders of capitalism, combined with the helpful assistance of $20 billion from U.S. taxpayers, can solve the whole problem.
Last time I proposed a Middle East peace plan, Andrew Sullivan nominated me for a “Malkin Award.” But that was five years ago.
This time, I’m ready to go for The Big One.
Call the Nobel Peace Prize committee. Tell ’em you found a winner.