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the best of intentions...
Shocker: Costly Social Engineering Program Fails to Work
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  • Makaden

    Sigh. Happy Monday.

  • Proud Skeptic

    And here is my shocked face…

  • Jacksonian_Libertarian

    “don’t always produce the intended results”

    Replace ‘always’ with ‘ever’ and the statement becomes true.

    • J K Brown

      I think that needs to be altered to their marketed/propagandized intended results. Their are those whose intended results are always produced as they vacuum up tax dollars and destroy the lives of those they disdain, with “love” now, instead of slavery or lynchings as they did in the 19th century.

  • FriendlyGoat

    This is asking us to believe that the answer to disagreements about locations for low-income housing is to have no programs to assist the financing and construction of low-income housing anywhere. So this piece adds heat to the polarization fire, but sheds no light..

    • Blackbeard

      Look to open cities like Houston and Dallas if you want to see housing policies that work. Hint: it’s not the government that is making them work.

      • FriendlyGoat

        I’m aware that Houston does not use zoning, but you’re telling me no one ever took advantage of federal money or tax breaks down there?

        • Blackbeard

          Sure, everyone takes federal money when it’s available and there’s what they call “HUD apartments” in Houston But that’s only a small part of what makes Houston an open city work compared to closed cities like New York and San Francisco. The big difference is that open cities are willing to let the market work. If there’s a demand for low rent apartments, for example, someone will build them if the government lets them. New York, in contrast, does everything they can to restrict supply (ULURPS, zoning, environmental regs, rent restrictions, etc.) and then, to make it even worse, they subsidize demand. As a result prices go sky high, the middle class is priced out, and New York, San Francisco, and other very liberal cities, who imagine they are doing good, are, in fact, the most unequal places in the US.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Well, we could always move those northern blue libs down to Houston, I guess. Will that be okay in an “open” place? I’ve been to Houston several times. Worked there a little. Liked it fine. Severe flood risks in a “big one” storm event, I hear. Also conflict with a more-conservative state legislature, I hear. No knock on Houston from me.

          • Jeff77450

            There would likely be far fewer low income people to house if all the War on Poverty programs of the 1960s hadn’t incentivized an epidemic of out-of-wedlock births. The illegitimate-birthrate was ~5.3% in 1960 and is ~41% today. Once again, well intended government programs (that aren’t core-functions) ran afoul of the Law of Unintended Consequences and the Principle of Causality, i.e. cause-and-effect relationships. Then there’re all the low income people that resulted from not securing the border and enforcing immigration law.

            I’m a native Houstonian and that’s where I’m writing from. You’re correct that we’re at high risk of flooding. The
            Houston-metroplex measures roughly 70×70 miles and is flat-as-a-pancake. Downtown Houston is just forty feet above sea-level. Each new patch of land that is paved-over or built on increases the risk of flooding because there is less open ground to absorb water.

            The lack of zoning laws has contributed to low housing costs and a business friendly environment but also massive ugly sprawl and a lack of aesthetics. Wish that I’d been born & raised in Austin.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Austin, I suppose, really is the cultural oasis of Texas. I hope the out-of-town legislators from the more-rural, more-conservative “elsewhere” of Texas do not go too crazy trying to “rein in” what liberalism exists in Austin, Houston, Dallas and San Antonio. I hear they are on the prowl now to write state-level law against their metro areas doing “blue-idea” stuff.

            As for Houston, when I visited there, I imagined they should call it Huge-ton. The seemingly-endless flat metro sprawl was an amazement to me (having grown up in a Midwest town of 3,000). And, I found Dallas -Ft. Worth and all the suburbs there to be pretty darn big too.

            In Austin, I once visited the state capitol and walked right into the public reception room of then-Governor George W. Bush’s office.
            Bush was out of town, I talked to the security guy who sat there.
            I asked him, “How is George Bush as Governor?” He said, “well I’ve worked in some other administrations, and George Bush is the only one who ever wanted to know and could remember the names of my kids.” I thought that was nice—-even, though, as you know, I’m not a conservative then or now. So, hooray for Texas, hooray for Houston, from my left-side view and 20-year-back recollections.

          • M Snow

            Thanks for the nice recollection of W.

          • FriendlyGoat

            You’re welcome. Here’s another. There is no doubt in my mind that W is fully devoted to Laura. He may even paint well, too. But, I’m still a liberal, okay?

          • James

            One thing that makes Houston work is that it is flat with plenty of relatively worthless land in all directions and not a rocky peninsula like San Francisco or a series of islands like New York.

  • J K Brown

    Where do you get the idea that these were “good intentions”, Liberal, for sure, but these people do evil because they intend to do it. That they ignorantly can’t exercise enough critical thought to see the evil, doesn’t excuse them. They take these actions for the graft and the smug, they do not do these things for the people they disdain, but rather to the people they disdain.

    The Dictatorial, Anti-Democratic and Socialist Character of Interventionism

    Many advocates of interventionism are bewildered when one tells them that in recommending interventionism they themselves are fostering anti-democratic and dictatorial tendencies and the establishment of totalitarian socialism. They protest that they are sincere believers and opposed to tyranny and socialism. What they aim at is only the improvement of the conditions of the poor. They say that they are driven by considerations of social justice, and favour a fairer distribution of income precisely because they are intent upon preserving capitalism and its political corollary or superstructure, viz., democratic government.

    What these people fail to realize is that the various measures they suggest are not capable of bringing about the beneficial results aimed at. On the contrary they produce a state of affairs which from the point of view of their advocates is worse than the previous state which they were designed to alter. If the government, faced with this failure of its first intervention, is not prepared to undo its interference with the market and to return to a free economy, it must add to its first measure more and more regulations and restrictions. Proceeding step by step on this way it finally reaches a point in which all economic freedom of individuals has disappeared. Then socialism of the German pattern, the Zwangswirtschaft of the Nazis, emerges.

    von Mises, Ludwig (1947). Planned Chaos

  • James

    Stop building “affordable housing”. Builders don’t like building it and people don’t want to live there.

    Build luxury housing instead. Then let the wealthy move into luxury housing and put their older luxury housing on the market for the upper middle class. The upper middle class will sell their houses to the middle class and so on, until workers end up able to afford what were middle class homes before the building spree.

    Now, some might counter, that people don’t like to move. This is true, but builders don’t like empty houses, either. New housing will be built for the price point and quality at which it is needed. Developers are good at figuring this out (and stand to lose millions of they are wrong), while Central planners are not and have no consequences if they are wrong.

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