Middle Class

Flyover Country Needs to Keep Our Biggest Edge: Housing Affordability

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If there’s one location advantage for the heartland that’s become clear during the last several years, it’s the edge we enjoy over the coasts in housing affordability.  read more »

You Can't Fix the Housing Crisis with New Houses. We Need New Cities

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Housing is rapidly becoming the key economic issue facing America's beleaguered middle class. Even as interest rates rise, rents are on a wild binge, up near 20 percent in the past year or more in some cities. Meanwhile, home prices have hit a high and appear to be climbing further still. Higher prices are emerging even in what have long been relative bargain communities in the southeast, as refugees from the high-priced Northeast pour in with their greater resources.  read more »

EVs Face Regional Divide — But For How Long?

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It’s always been in the background of the nation’s ongoing transition to electric transportation, but now a significant reality has been brought to the forefront by some data-crunching journalists: There’s a strong regional divide in our willingness to adopt EVs.  read more »

How Cato Sold Out California Property Owners

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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 »

A Long Term Outlook on Housing Affordability

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So, there’s yet another inquiry into housing affordability underway. This latest is called “The House of Representatives Standing Committee on Tax and Revenue inquiry into housing affordability and supply in Australia.” Chaired by NSW Liberal MP Mr Jason Falinski, it’s getting a few headlines with statements like ‘half the cost of new house and land packages consist of state and local government charges.’  read more »

Report: Restoring the California Dream

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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 »

The Next American Cities, a New Report from Urban Reform Insitute

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The urban form has shifted throughout history. This has been critical to its success. Today we are on the cusp of another transition, ushered in by new technologies and changing demographics, and accelerated by a devastating pandemic. Although these forces affect all geographies, the best chance of success and growth lies in what we define as The Next American City.  read more »

Here's Why California is Losing Population for the First Time

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California is suffering a major demographic reversal, one that threatens both the state’s economic future and the durability of its progressive model.  read more »

Our Neo-Feudal Future

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America has only a limited feudal past, the plantation aristocracy of the antebellum South and the enormous class chasms of the Gilded Age being pretty much our only examples. Yet today—after decades of social mobility, a digital revolution that was supposed to empower individuals everywhere, and the construction of a vigorous anti-discrimination apparatus that putatively ensures equal rights and status—a rigid new social order with feudal elements has come into view.  read more »

How to Tax a Billionaire (or Not)

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Our institutions created centibillionaires and are now trying to contain them.

In Ayn Rand’s novel Atlas Shrugged, a group of high-achieving industrialists have had enough with being exploited (in their view) by “parasitic” collectivists and “second-handers”. They withdraw to a perfect community Galt’s Gulch aka Atlantis where they can live in peace and prosperity with each other, far away from the do-nothing (in their view) populace and according to their own laws and beliefs.  read more »