The Service Employees International Union is trying to organize in South Florida’s Fisher Island, former home of robber-baron (Vanderbilt) ilk. Fisher Island is the richest little nook in America in terms of per capita income while (expectedly) the wages of most common laborers on the island do not exceed $10/hour. Fisher Island, which looks a lot like Vice City, is high-profile union bait, particularly because of the stark contrast in the income levels of its residents and workers.
Fisher Island is so rich, that it is even richer than you think it is (think about that for a second).
According to the Census Bureau, Fisher Island was the richest enclave in America in 1999, with an average income per capita of about $236,000 — more than double the $91,000 average on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Residents say the real figures are actually far higher, partly because of the difficulty in gathering income data on part-time residents.
Oh, now it’s on. You don’t go dissing the per capita income of the Upper East Side without expecting a throwdown. I know at least two Upper East Side dwelling IB managing directors who were highly ranked pugilists in prep school (one ranked as highly as #7 in the state of Rhode Island, out of a possible 8) who could probably beat Oprah’s ass, if tranq’d. Does Fisher Island have Normandie Court? Or Dorians? Where are you supposed to beat a girl at beer pong until she gets drunk enough to go home with you on Fisher Island? Certainly not Martin Zweig’s jacuzzi, lined with the platinum-embossed pages of “Winning on Wall Street,” known to temper the otherwise threatening tumescence of glistening sun-kissed pool boys and anyone else who doesn’t make 7 figures like kryptonite.
Condos on Fisher Island frequently feature amenities like sheepskin covered bathroom walls (gross, and how much Febreeze do you need every year to service a room like that?) and imported coral rock (isn't that illegal?). Remember, says condo manager Sue Irving, “Fisher Island is not the story about rich people who don’t care about the poor,” as she sells a $13mm unit which features a room carpeted in Siamese cat eyelashes that Manuel is currently brushing for $8/hour.
Screw unions, where’s Tommy Vercetti when you need him?
An Island of Moguls Is Latest Front in Union Battle – [NYTimes]