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Wallethub, the financial website, just released an analysis of states most dependent on the gun industry.  New York ranks as the 3rd least dependent state, and also ranks low on gun prevalence and gun politics.  Our state has the 4th fewest gun industry jobs, receives the lowest total taxes paid by the gun industry (ranking 50th), has the 3rd lowest gun ownership, and the 3rd fewest NICS background checks per capita.  If you happen to be lucky enough to have a job in the gun industry in New York, the state ranks 3rd highest average wages and benefits for Firearms Industry employees.

That got me to thinking, and I came up with my 'million dollar idea' through a labarynthine train of thought.  It started with the gun industry news, which led me to I wonder what the highest dollar-producing industry in New York is.  I thought that with all the multi-million dollar farms in our area, and given the size of our mostly rural state, that farming might be the top industry.  But, nope, it is what, if you think about it for a half a minute, you would expect with New York City being part of the state: banking.

Banking in New York has the highest salaries, and has contributed  $76.5 billion to the GDP (Gross Domestic Product), or 6% of the total GDP, and a large percentage of the more than $1 trillion state economy.  According to USA Today, that is more than more than the entire economies of over a dozen states, including Hawaii, Delaware, and North Dakota.  I'm thinking this is good news, because one of my children has begun climbing the lower rungs of the corporate ladder at a major bank, though he doesn't live in New York, and doesn't earn the median annual salary of $139,149 New York bank workers earn.  Still the news perked me up.  It's something to look forward to!

I have been thinking about this because last month was corporate tax time.  The federal government doesn't do this, but New York taxes corporations even if they don't make any money.  Our corporation has to pay a whopping $25 each year, just for the privilege of existing within the exalted Empire State.  And this morning I paid $9 for the privilege of telling New York that my address and contact information are the same as they were two years ago.

I don't mind those particular taxes and fees.  But they make me wonder whether they are worth the cost of collecting them to the State.  I also wonder how many folks are fined for not filling out the biennial report because they mistakenly think the biennial statement email New York sent them is spam?

Which leads me to junk mail.  The banks have to be spending a huge portion of that $76.5 billion on unsolicited glossy mailings to get folks to sign up for more and more credit cards.  I estimate that more than 50% of the mail I receive via the US Postal Service goes directly from my mailbox to the recycling bin, because it is so-called 'junk mail'.

And that brings me to my million dollar idea -- you know... the kind we all have but most of us rarely act on:

Someone should invent a device that turns junk mail into targets.  That would perk up New York's gun industry, too, because who wouldn't want to obliterate junk mail with a shotgun?

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