Idiotic Idea of the Day: End Homelessness As We Know It

Mish

Bill de Blasio, the Mayor of New York, has an idea. It cannot possibly work.

Idiotic Idea of the Day

Please consider Mayor Vows to End New York City Street Homelessness 'As We Know It'.

Mayor Bill de Blasio released a plan Tuesday aimed at getting nearly all of the estimated 3,600 people who are living on New York City streets and in the subway system into shelters and homes within five years.

The Democratic mayor's plan to "end street homelessness as we know it" includes adding 1,000 new "safe haven" beds in churches and other non-profits and 1,000 apartments earmarked for homeless people.

As We Know It

About 60,000 people live in city homeless shelters.

Want more of something, then subsidize it. Better yet, give it away for free. If you earmark 1,000 apartments for the homeless there will be 10,000 takers.

Add in free food and there will be hundreds of thousands of takers.

Bus Service Needed

I propose a free bus service.

Say Ohio wants to get rid of its homeless. They could offer free busses to New York and better benefits.

That would, without a doubt end homelessness "as we know it".

Please recall Bill Clinton's plan to "End Welfare As We Know It".

You might be surprised to learn that president Clinton did indeed do what he said.

Unfortunately, it was not a success story.

Please consider "End Welfare As We Know It".

How did it work?

In 1996 Bill Clinton signed a welfare reform act, that he proclaimed to be the "End of Welfare As We Know It". It was. People moved off welfare on to even easier to get disability programs.

Part of Clinton's welfare reform plan pushed states to get people on welfare into jobs, partly by making states pay a much larger share of welfare costs.

The incentive "worked" using the term loosely. Welfare rolls shrank but disability rolls soared.

Clinton's success was to replace welfare with an even greater amount of disability fraud.

I suspect Bill de Blasio will have a similar measure of "success".

If after this you are still thinking of donating money to aid the poor, please note Vatican Spends 90% of Donations for the Poor On Itself

So either do a better job of investigating charities, or consider donating food to a local food bank.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

Comments (47)
No. 1-18
Sechel
Sechel

de blasio's solution for homelessness is to let them camp out wherever they want including libraries , supermarket, parks and popular avenues. they erect tents that get taken down at night and create a feeling of an unsafe city.

this isn't good for the city, neighborhood and also deprives the homeless of the help they need. as imperfect as the solution is they must be directed to shelters and groups that help the homeless.

Deblasio frankly is an idiot and all new yorkers except the most liberal ones can't stand him. its amazing he got reelected unchallenged. nobody can understand it. other than instituting pre-k he doesn't have a single program to his credit that new yorkers approve of.

shamrock
shamrock

I recently visited Manhattan Beach in Los Angeles. Not a single homeless person in sight. Not sure how they do it but probably some variation of pushing them out to the neighboring towns.

Six000mileyear
Six000mileyear

Breaking the cycle of poverty involves breaking the reproductive cycle. Every vet knows spay neuter controls the stray animal population. For people, the moral soap to wash our collective conscience would be a buyout and free medical procedure. Offering $250000 tax free seems like a lot, but considering the cost to raise a child from birth to adulthood, and the likelihood of incarceration, the return on investment is well worth it.

Realist
Realist

If you want to help people, help them acquire the skills they need to find a job. That is my main charitable focus; with both my time and contributions. It’s not a panacea, but over the last 8 years we have helped hundreds get the skills and then get the jobs.

Sadly, not everyone is capable of acquiring the necessary skills, and there will always be a need for government support. But helping people to help themselves in this manner is a least a small part of the solution.

Greggg
Greggg

"Safe haven beds in churches". Notice that he doesn't include mosques or synagogs.

mkestrel
mkestrel

New York is already busing homeless to other states. Bill De Blasio is a liar.

Tengen
Tengen

It's a longstanding American truism that the best way to get more of something is to declare war on it. I wish we'd declare a War on Prosperity so we could finally get bankers under control and induce actual wage growth.

SMF
SMF

The more $$ California spends for the homeless, the worse the problem becomes.

One probable reason is that the rise in the minimum wage, $13/hr starting in January, means that a lot of these people will no longer be employable.

We've had several very popular and old restaurants close recently due to this.

Scooot
Scooot

I would encourage everyone to read The Salt Path by Raynor Winn https://www.theguardian.com/books/2019/feb/07/the-salt-path-raynor-winn-review

We have a growing number of homeless people. Although I agree that raising living standards and education would help, its unlikely to happen and hasn't solved the problem to date. So we need a different approach. I also agree that if first class sheltered accommodation is provided free of charge it would encourage people to take it up.

However we have many churches across the country with large sheltered spaces that could be used to provide a roof, as opposed to a doorway. It would be possible to build some basic additional accommodation. The way to prevent people from travelling from one area to another to use the better facilities is to do it on a National basis not a local basis. People generally don't choose to be homeless, they're usually a victim of circumstances, some of their making, and some not. It will be much easier to address their individual problems if we know where they are and we provide staff to assess and deal with the issues. So using an existing empty space, such as an empty Church overnight would be a good first step in my opinion.

Blurtman
Blurtman

Doing away with the Fed might help.

KidHorn
KidHorn

I used to work in an area with a lot of homeless. I used to give them food. Never money. The money would be spent on booze. Sometimes it was leftovers from home. Many times if I were eating lunch at say McDonalds, I would pick up a couple extra cheeseburgers for 69 cents. No big deal. I talked to them sometimes. They were universally crazy. There's no way they could ever work a job or keep up a house.

John1984
John1984

The homeless industrial complex marches on. watch anatomy of a swindle.

Herkie
Herkie

This is a serious problem Mish, and to date I have seen no answers that are even remotely helpful, because of course the only real answer is good jobs at good pay and housing at reasonable NON BUBBLE prices. And even then there will be homeless because quite a few of the current homeless are in fact unable to work, they are unemployable, mental illness, drug abuse, mental health problems.

I would like to see charity supported group facilities where they can be "sorted into their houses" to use a Harry Potter term, those that society can reclaim as functional get the help they need to actually get employed and housed. Those that cannot be helped back I think unfortunately need to go to some type of centralized facility that specializes in housing and possibly reclaiming lives, sometimes they are just lacking skills, sometimes it is refusal to take meds, or never having got mental health help in the first place. I am not talking prison here, but also not far above prison in accomodations.

One of the problems is current help such as HUD voucher programs do not simply house people; they tell them how to live. I saw that with my own Mom when she had to quit working in her 50's after a couple of unexplained comas. On SSI her take home pay was about $932 per month at that time, in CALIFORNIA where the effective poverty level is more than twice that. HUD changed the rules and she was not even allowed to have a cigarette on the property. I could only visit during certain hours, there were about 100 things that could cause her to lose her housing. And had she had a reliable car I am pretty sure she would have preferred to live in that rather than put up with the government nanny telling her how to live.

I think a lot of people actually choose to be homeless rather than put up with it. Or start out in their cars but don't have the money to maintain them and they cease to be a viable "home."

Then there are the good intentions of a few that are to me revolting and make the problem worse: https://www.rogueretreat.com/housing-programs/hope-village/

These "homes" are 6X9 with lockable doors, no plumbing or utilities, a long list of requirements, and even a "fee" which we normally call rent.

Of course the real problem with this is that it will one day become the norm as it wipes away standards for housing and landlords start offering such "houses." Watch as the next recession sees millions more homeless and communities look the other way on what constitutes housing and what does not. What is required like sewer, water, and utility hookups and that just eventually becomes the new standard of what is housing. They still don't have jobs and will still roam the streets stealing everything including stuff that is nailed down, and unlike the rest of your readers I see this as a structural and inevitable result of wealth inequality, if you endow 1% of the population with 50% of a nation's assets and liquid wealth then there are going to be millions of people that are left with nothing, it just is that simple. Then with a recession (that really used to be called a depression) you get millions more, and while a small percentage get out of that cycle with better times the net result is millions of people with no prospects at all.

Then there is this one and it really pisses me off.

Las Vegas nonprofit converts shipping containers into homes for vets

Disabled vets, people who are not asking for "free stuff," but who served the nation. Being put into repurposed shipping containers. These are just one small cut above repurposed dumpsters.

What the real problem here is this, the CPI is a made up number that is now used entirely as a plug number that the Federal Reserve and federal government needds to justify their fiscal and monetary policy that benefit Wall Street and the very wealthy donor class. They quite actually do not give a rats puckered ass about the people. They only like to look as if they care when things get so bad that the people become a growing threat to their plans, they keep the people as poor as they possibly can without civil unrest.

Housing is not even measured in inflation statistics, please do not try to tell me that Owners' equivalent rent is a measure of housing costs because it is NOT!

In fact the CPI does not measure any actual price/cost increases at all. We all know that they have so many ways of deleting actual increases, and the very concept is flawed. But, in this modern age where every single purchase is tracked and stored through credit and debit card histories, as well as such things as store rewards cards and online order records, it would be very possible to simply take actual purchases on an ongoing basis and determine the REAL price increases from that. But, they probably will not since it would reveal that prices are no longer the same for you as for me. Something we would have considered fundamentally unfair and illegal when I was young, places open to the public were supposed to charge the same to men as for women, charge the same for whites as blacks, the same for English speakers as Spanish, in short the same for everyone walking through the door. That is no longer the case. And it constitutes far larger a problem than you would believe. Prices at the grocery in a slum ghetto neighborhood are a lot higher than at a white neighborhood just a couple miles away even within the same store chain. Go to a rent to own store and notice that a washer dryer set YOU can buy with your credit card is $1,200 but at RAC is going on $5,000 by the time you pay it off. How many people like you never avail yourself of a payday loan? At hundreds of thousands of percent annual interest? No, these are almost exclusively reserve for the poor. You say they have a choice, I say they don't. But be careful what shade you throw because at the current rate you could be one of them before you know it.

truthseeker
truthseeker

Has anyone mentioned the fact that people shouldn’t be allowed to hang huge banners from large buildings saying welcome illegals, free healthcare. So can anybody make a good guess as to how many of these homeless people are illegal? So first we need to stop them at the border it seems like to me. A while back I took a list of the yield of 1 year treasury bills going back about 70 years, threw out all the ones above 7% and the ones below 3%. The average was 5% a bit higher than what I guessed. I mention this because the QE total is about 4 trillion. Debt service has forced interest rates so low that people can’t get a fair return on their savings. If they are not illegal, many homeless people no longer have jobs because of this problem. The debt problem is unfixable short of a worldwide financial “reset” which is very worrisome to say the least!

astroboy
astroboy

Mish, as noted earlier, the recent story about the Vatican is erroneous. Peter's Pence is expressly for running the Vatican. That has been made absolutely clear in every Catholic church I've been in whenever the donations are made once a year. I don't think it's wise to have a link to it.

Stuki
Stuki

The only real solution to Xlessness, is to increase X. Anything else is just pathologically unintelligent people mindlessly babbling about things their braindead little selves are way to dumb to understand.

Keep increasing X, and at some point, you will get to the point where the cost of adding another unit cannot be recouped. But we're talking the cost of scrap wood and a tarp here, as even that is an improvement from not even that.

What the typical less-than-literate dimbulb, in his always infinite, childlike idiocy, really mean by "solving" homelessness, is to have less homelessness without having more homes. Which I suppose can be tortured into seeming possible, if only one is stupid enough.

But not otherwise. Braindeath aside, less homelessness require more homes. As in increased home supply. Which results in lower home prices. For those who currently don't own a home. As well as for those who currently do. The latter group which, by now, ever increasingly consists of half literates whose main source of unearned wealth, stem directly from the artificially supported price of their home. Hence, from politically imposed homelessness.

You simply cannot simultaneously have both 1)a free market in housing, along with a free market's ability to reduce/eliminate scarcity, and 2)an army of zero value add halfwits sitting idle on the couch "making money from their home." A house is a commodity. There is no possible profit in building one. The only way to keep up pretenses that there is, is to steal the "gain" fro someone else. Including stealing the ability to have a home from those who then become "the homeless."

Advancingtime
Advancingtime

The Fort Wayne Housing Authority recently broke ground for a new housing development geared to help those struggling from chronic homelessness. The River’s Edge Apartments project, will also include laundry services, bike racks, a library, and more. The cost of these units is slated to come in at a whopping $248,214 each.

The problem is, Zillow claims the median home value in Fort Wayne is $133,500 and residents enjoy some of the lowest rents in America. Still, Executive Director of the Fort Wayne Housing Authority calls this "expensive boondoggle" vital to the well-being of the state. The fact such scams are occurring all across America screams the system is broken.

The article below argues that only politicians and those gaining from these kinds of projects would be silly enough to think that landlords who have to compete against subsidized housing would be eager to remain in the game or that someone working for a living enjoys paying more for an older apartment than someone on the dole who moves into a brand new unit for a fraction of the cost.


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