The story is that New York bought a used ferryboat for $500,000 and then discovered that the "fixer-upper" was fit only for scrap. Apparently they only had three weeks to inspect it. So they put it on eBay and the current bid is around $15,000.
When a shady used car dealer wants to foist a piece of junk on a dupe, one of the tactics he uses is to hurry the dupe: "I got another buyer interested in this beauty!" (Or some equivalent.) The appropriate response to this tactic is, "I wouldn't think of standing between you and a sale. If this other buyer purchases the car before I'm satisfied that it's worth buying, I'm sure I can find another car which will do."
The dupe in this case consoles himself that he bought the rusting hulk for $250,000 less than the asking price; instead of paying $750,000 for a worthless pile of junk, he only paid $500,000.
Granted that one cannot simply go to a used ship lot and buy a ferryboat, it's nonetheless true that if you can't take all the time you need to inspect the merchandise, you should walk away from the sale.
But, what the hell. It's not like it was his money he was spending, right? And I'm sure it's a small percentage of his annual budget. And I don't live in New York and the only New York taxes I've paid were on the food and drink I bought at LaGuardia on Sunday. So, WTF.