Politics

What Can Jersey City Teach Us About YIMBYism?

JerseyCity.jpg

I’m back. I haven’t written much lately but I am always reading and gathering topics for future posts. Here’s one.

Over the last 2-3 months, I’ve come across Twitter discussions among many self-professed YIMBY (Yes In My Back Yard) advocates. If you’re familiar with YIMBYs you know that they believe the lack of housing affordability in American cities largely stems from regulatory restraints that limits housing production.  read more »

How Cato Sold Out California Property Owners

Street-Low_Density.jpg

In September, 2021, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed a bill abolishing single-family zoning. This bill was a victory for the Yes in Other People’s Back Yards (YIOPBY) movement, as well as for urban planners who sought to densify California urban areas, which are already the densest in the nation.  read more »

The Housing Racket Goes On

dunedin-nz.jpg

Once again, I feel compelled to write about house prices. Why? Because it is the most important cause of social distress in New Zealand today, and that by a large margin. There would still be social problems if house prices were half their present level, but they would be vastly more manageable – child poverty would be much reduced, mental health would be better, there would be less homelessness, there would be fewer suicides, and educational progress would be better if kids didn’t have to move between one over-crowded home and another at too frequent intervals.  read more »

Report: Restoring the California Dream

report_restoring-california-dream.jpg

This newly released report examines how the California dream can be restored for California's middle- and working-class families. An excerpt follows:  read more »

California's Economy is Weaker Than it Looks

Gavin-Newsom_2019-conference_by-gage-skidmore.jpg

Whisper it, but the $45 billion surplus Gavin Newsom has projected for California next year isn’t quite what it seems. In fact, the bulk of that surplus is largely due to the earnings of a few giants such as Google, Apple and Meta (formerly Facebook), as well as a handful of IPOs.  read more »

Welcome to the End of Democracy

end-of-democracy-dream.jpg

We bemoan autocracies in Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, Russia and China but largely ignore the more subtle authoritarian trend in the West. Don’t expect a crudely effective dictatorship out of Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four: we may remain, as we are now, nominally democratic, but be ruled by a technocratic class empowered by greater powers of surveillance than those enjoyed by even the nosiest of dictatorships.  read more »

Is This the End of Progressive America?

us-flag-burns.jpg

Over the past several decades, the progressive Left has successfully fulfilled Antonio Gramsci’s famed admonition of a “long march through the institutions”. In almost every Western country, its adherents now dominate the education system, media, cultural institutions, and financial behemoths.  read more »

Subjects:

Pandemic Cuts: Deepening the Higher Ed Divide

Brooklyn_College_campus.jpg

American mythology promises upward mobility, and college can provide an important first step up the class ladder. With the rise of the “knowledge economy” and the decline of industrial jobs and unions, some insisted that education is the answer to economic displacement. If you can’t earn a stable, living wage as a steelworker, go to college and become a nurse or a computer programmer. And if you didn’t make that choice, it’s your own fault that you’re struggling. After all, college was affordable, accessible, and varied.  read more »

Trouble in Paradise: The Crumbling California Model

pomona-poverty_russ-loar.jpg

Some horrified conservatives dismiss California as the progressive dystopia, bound for bankruptcy and, let’s hope, growing irrelevance.  read more »

U.S. Road Conditions and Performance in 2020

crumbling-bridges.jpg

While Americans drove their cars only 84 percent as many miles in 2020 as in 2019, according to data recently published by the Federal Highway Administration, they drove semi-trucks 101 percent as many miles.  read more »