Too Few Homes, Too Many Homeless: Part One, How it Happened

Apart from the fine weather unique to California, there is little stopping the homeless crisis that grips that state from infecting the rest of America. California’s other even bigger problem, unaffordable housing, is also coming to America. All the elements are in place.

The problem of increasing homelessness boils down to three fundamental policy failures. Massive immigration, overpriced housing, and an inability of state and local governments to properly deal with homeless people.

Volumes could be written about each of these problems, because each of them are symptomatic of deeper challenges. Immigration is fundamentally transforming our culture. Overpriced housing is just one element of the economic asset bubble that offers an illusory, unsustainable substitute for genuine economic growth. And our inability to deal with the homeless is just one example of a stultified society, mired in legal disputes, bureaucratic inertia, and corruption.

Before exploring the specific synergy these three problems have with respect with homelessness, it’s important to declare their larger significance. Because how each of these problems affect homelessness, and how each of them might be solved in order to resolve the problem of homelessness, point the way to larger, more general solutions.

Mass Immigration Raises Demand for Housing

The easiest of these three to understand is mass immigration. It is also the easiest to solve, which unfortunately is only to say the other problems are even tougher. Since 1965, over 60 million people have immigrated to the United States. During that time, the total population has […] Read More