Demographics

Expanding, Productive Mexico City: The Evolving Urban Form

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Much of the media has been fascinated by the growing number of megacities (built up urban areas with at least 10 million residents). Not only are megacities regularly covered but various reports have them becoming denser. They’re not, as has been demonstrated by Professor Shlomo Angel, who leads the Urban Expansion Program at New York University’s Marron Institute.  read more »

The California Exodus is Real

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Not unlike the Hebrews departing Egypt and the Okies exiting the dust and famine of the 1930’s Midwest the number of Californians getting the heck out of Dodge so-to-speak is staggering.

In just one decade about 5 million Californians left between 2004 and 2013. Roughly 3.9 million people came here from other states during that period, for a net population loss of more than 1 million people. The trend resulted in a net loss of about $26 billion in annual income.  read more »

Jews Could Swing the 2020 Election — and Why That's Not a Good Thing

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In our selfie-defined culture, it’s usually considered a good thing to get attention, the more the better. But it may not be the case for Jews, or for Israel, to be  caught in the firestorm that is burning through American politics in ways not seen since the Second World War. “That Israel is becoming a wedge issue in American politics,” notes author Daniel Gordis, “ bodes very badly for Israel’s future security.”  read more »

Why America’s Free Market Economy Works Better in Some Places than Others

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Is America’s free market system working as advertised? Mostly yes, but it depends to a surprising degree on where you live.

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Democracy is For the Dogs

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With a new round of state and local elections just around the corner, I am regularly asked about what brings Americans out to the polls and helps them politically engage them with their communities.  read more »

The Expanding and Dispersing San Francisco Bay Area

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This decade has witnessed an unprecedented expansion of the Greater San Francisco Bay Area (the San Jose-San Francisco combined statistical area or CSA), with the addition of three Central Valley metropolitan areas, Stockton, Modesto and Merced. Over the same period, there has been both a drop in the population growth rate and a shift of growth to the Central Valley exurban metropolitan areas.  read more »

Organic Urbanism is the Cure for New Urbanism

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This early 1900s house, after the neighborhood had been rezoned for apartments, declined in value to $7,000 in the 1970s. Being rezoned single-family brought decades of revitalization that raised the value of neighborhood homes like this one to $700,000.

New Urbanism is like a virus. For 50 years it keeps coming back in mutated forms. It needs a cure.  read more »

Greater Los Angeles Area Growth Tanking and Dispersing

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For decades, there has been substantial dispersion of population in Greater Los Angeles (Los Angeles combined statistical area or CSA), as the suburban areas outside the urban core have dominated population growth. The latest population estimates by the US Census Bureau confirm the continuation of that trend. But something has changed. In recent years the Los Angeles CSA has experienced an unprecedented slowing of growth. The little growth has occurred has been dispersed away from coast, especially from Los Angeles and Orange counties to inland Riverside and San Bernardino counties.  read more »

Energy to Synergy: the Policy Plight of Resource-Dependent Cities

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The Green New Deal, an ambitious US congressional resolution introduced in 2019 that met substantial political pushback and failed to gain official approval, proposed among other things to provide housing, health care, and jobs via an economic stimulus package targeting green technology.  read more »

China's Looming Class Struggle

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Westerners tend to identify China’s coming political crisis with developments such as the brave, educated, and often English-speaking protests in Hong Kong. Although they undoubtably pose an annoyance to Xi Jinping’s regime, the real existential challenge to the regime derives not from China’s middle orders but from the very classes that gave birth to the Communist regime.  read more »