How The Government's War on Street Vendors Keeps People Poor

Over-regulation eliminates paths to prosperity.

(Page 2 of 2)

Mayor Martinez argued that "you create an unfair advantage when you allow that vendor selling in the front of a flower shop to sell the same flowers that the flower shop sells, and to sell them at a much reduced price. That's unfair competition."

It's a fair point: Why open a brick-and-mortar store and pay property tax if you could save maybe $3,000 a year by selling from a cart?

"These are different types of business models," Foley replied. "A florist can offer professional arrangement. A florist can offer delivery. A florist has a bathroom. Air conditioning. A street vendor is out there on the street, and the way they compete is on price and convenience; you can drive up and get your flowers and go home quickly. There's nothing wrong with having two different types of business models competing near each other. It happens in America all the time.

"It's not legitimate for government to use its incredible power to make one business model have an unfair advantage over another."

As a libertarian, I'd say that the store owners' beef is with the local government that imposes the property tax, not the street vendor struggling to make a better life.

If government destroys all the paths out of poverty, the welfare state will look like the only way to help the poor.

Maybe, in addition to helping entrenched interests, that's the bureaucrats' goal.

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  • Barry Loberfeld||

  • Regulation makes people poorer||

    Of course the city-State (civilization) creates poverty.

    We used to have the Original Affluent Society.

    "The life of an Indian is a continual holiday." ~Thomas Paine

    And then came the agricultural city-STATISTS and killed-off the whole Non-State sociopolitical typology and the Gayanashagowa or the Great Law of Peace of the Iroquois.

    I expect more such trails of tears imposed upon those who are not elite in the hierarchy that is a consequence of city-Statist division of labor.

    So keep cheering for the city-State, libertards, even though its the problem you rage against.

    textStockholm Syndrome, how does it work?

  • BakedPenguin||

    +1 Barry

  • Fat White Indian||

    On this I concur with my gamboling brother we neeed much easier access to rolling food dispensing vehicles!

  • Black White Indian||

    Notice how I've moved from being a full fledged naturalist to believing that property exists? It's an excuse for me to keep my computer while living in mom's basement.

  • An Actual Naturalist||

    Naturalists are those who study nature usually as a hobby. WI's expressed sentiments seem to comport with those of anarcho-primitivists. Please don't insult us by conflating WI with us.

  • Naturists||

    Us, neither.

  • Libertard goes full 'tard||

    It's like Idiocracy here.

  • Matrix||

    They see me gambolin'... they hatin'

  • ||

    They think that I'm so white and retardy...

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: White Imbecile,

    We used to have the Original Affluent Society.


    Where you would find yourself shitting your knickers and crying like a little girl at the sight of bears getting away with the meager morsels you worked so hard to find if in your beloved "original affluent society", you hypocrite.

  • ||

    Who are you kidding? The bear would eat WI, especially since the "morsels" in question are probably poisonous berries.

  • fish||

    Wait for it...wait for it....someones going to trot out the harsh language and call Old Mex a poodle.

  • Thanks for the feedback||

    I'm livin' rent free in your head now. Thanks for remembering that Old Mex is a Nanny-Statist poodle psychologically projecting his own fear of wilderness.

  • fish||

    I'm livin' rent free in your head now.

    Just like you're livin' rent free in moms basement.

  • Wanna bet?||

  • Nany-Statist Old Poodle||

    Tsk, tsk, it's just too dangerous out there, dear.

  • sarcasmic||

    The way to create jobs and end the recession is to make it impossible to start a new business that may employ people and move the economy.

  • anon||

    Oh, and print enough money to make sure it's all equally worthless.

  • o2||

    "...the store owners' beef is with the local government that imposes the property tax"
    _

    of course, all city services should be free...just like the occupy folks want

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Triple asshole,

    of course, all city services [sic] should be free...


    "Services"????

    FUCK YOU!

  • WTF||

    "Services"????

    Yeah, you know, like when the farmer brings his bull to 'service' the cows.

  • o2||

    with jems like this, is it any wonder folks dont take libtoidz moar seriously ?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Double Asshole,

    with jems like this, is it any wonder folks dont take libtoidz moar seriously ?


    Oh, nice come back there, you semi-illiterate.

  • WTF||

    Semi-illiterate? I call full retard.

  • o2||

    its called teh soccial contact old mix if u want to dye do to disentary go to somalla

  • WTF||

    ^spoof or real?^ It's actually hard to tell the difference.

  • fish||

    Does it matter?

  • o2||

    nah since its ez.

  • Shecky||

    Or maybe most people actually understand jokes.

  • o2||

    oh so old mex & WTF were joking?...as in not to be taken seriously ?

  • ||

    Copied from my response to the same article from Stossel on another site:

    Perhaps a bit of a stretch, but not much, I have a store across from my office that makes absolutely wonderful schnitzel platters. It's a little more expensive than Mickey D's (not by much) but it's consistently terrific and its an actual meal that's a few orders of magnitude better in quality. It's one of the few times I can honestly say that I feel a bit excited about going out for lunch. The place started out as a food truck. They still operate the truck in addition to the store. Just yesterday, I grabbed lunch from a street truck that was selling "grilled cheese". I use the quotes because the grilled cheese in question was smoked gouda on artisan wheat bread with pulled pork and came with tater tots with a habanero relish. The point is that street vendors often offer some of the most innovative and creative products you can find, often at good value. And that makes sense, in a way. If you've got a really off-beat idea that could be the next big thing or could go over like a lead balloon, you probably don't want to commit a lot of capital to the venture. In the case of the poor, well the capital just isn't there. It's the opportunity that they need to build the capital stake to open the nice restaurant or store that would otherwise remain nothing more than a dream. In addition to locking the poor out of the opportunity to lift themselves out of their predicament, laws against street vendors leave the rest of us locked into a stasis of established mediocrity where we are forced to do without (how many people start a habit of buying flowers for loved ones because they can pick up a dozen roses for $12 from a street vendor, rather than paying $50 to a florist) or never discover.

  • wareagle||

    a stasis of established mediocrity
    ------------------------
    ^^^this. All the rules allow for institutional mediocrity. Maybe the vendor's idea is great, maybe it sucks; the market will sort that out pretty quickly.

  • ||

    True. But, sometimes even the abject failures make life a little more interesting and add a little color.

  • wareagle||

    seems Big Nanny believes failure can be removed from the equation. Nope. That's how you learn. The Dyson vacuum guy says he built more than 5,000 failed models before landing on the one that worked. And, nothing says the vendor's bad idea cannot be improved upon and re-introduced. We're the country that came up with the pet rock, for crying out loud.

  • ||

    And when they get rid of all the failures they'll get rid of all the real successes and life will become one big happy gristmill where every day is Groundhog's Day.

  • sarcasmic||

    the market will sort that out pretty quickly

    These people do not believe in markets. They despise markets because they cannot control them. Same reason they hate liberty. Liberty means being free from control, and control is all they understand.

    They want to be the ones who decide which ideas are great, and then impose them through force. If you don't like it then tough shit for you, because the law says that's all you get.
    If they can't control something then they don't want it.

  • anon||

    I'm starting to come up with the idea that the division of labor has created this problem in the first place. I get customers in all the time that think they know what's wrong with their car and just think "man that guy's retarded." It's not that the person is actually dumb, but that I have such a vast repertoire of knowledge to draw on. I'm absolutely positive that I'm equally as clueless on whatever my customer's profession is.

    So, politicians start to think they have the answers to all of the country's ills, being so-called experts at lawmaking. They know absolutely nothing about law-unmaking.

  • sarcasmic||

    They know absolutely nothing about law-unmaking.

    They can't conceive the idea. It's a foreign concept.

    They see law as a thing of beauty.
    To repeal a law is to destroy a work of art.
    Might as well burn down the Louvre.

  • wareagle||

    that's why I say the state of the economy is intentional. Stuff like this, the manufactured outrage over TransCanada, the continued refusal to drill domestically, tax gimmicks, the ignorance of OWS.....

  • sarcasmic||

    I disagree. These people feel that if they can command and control everything, that they can make it better.
    That is why they despise markets and liberty, because that involves decentralized decision making that is out of their control.
    How can they make it better if they can't control it?

    The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

  • anon||

    Yeah, I agree with your synopsis. Established politicians don't think it's broken, just needs some Newtacular Titties "tweaking."

  • wareagle||

    sarc,
    I see some violent agreement. Here's why: yes, they despise liberty and love control. But, gaining control means stifling innovation and creativity, thus creating dependence on govt, ergo more control. Not disagreeing with you; just using different words to reach teh same period.

  • sarcasmic||

    I disagree that the state of the economy is intentional.

    While I agree that the state of the economy is a direct result of their actions, they do not.
    They see the state of the economy as a result of their having insufficient control over it.

    The more they control it the worse it will become, and the more frustrated they will become because after all their intentions are good.

    This is how we pave the road to hell.

  • Yet another Dave||

    I too believe that liberals are paving the road to hell for all of us in the usual way. For they see all these ills in the world, and are convinced that government is the answer and if they failed before, it's only because they weren't exercising enough control or throwing enough money at the problem. It's not that they are control freaks, at least anymore than the Republicans are control freaks in different areas. They're just overly benevolent, and not understanding that every time they exert undue pressure trying to fix problem A, they create problems B, C, D and E in the process.

    I also don't think they despise liberty. They just think liberty takes a back seat when people are starving. The problem is, by trying to create programs to help 100 people that were hungry, they caused a thousand more to decide there was no more need to work because the government was coming around with free food, housing, etc. for everybody. So then they took pitty on the thousand that were no longer working, and 10,000 went on the teat in the process. Searching for Heaven for everyone, they drove us straight to hell instead.

  • wareagle||

    their intentions are good.
    ---------------------------
    THAT is the part I disagree with. Their intentions are dishonest and evil. Everything about the left discourages activity in which one person distinguishes him/herself from another. It's a cult of sameness - shared misery, shared dependence on the state.

  • ||

    Their intentions are dishonest and evil.

    I agree with wareagle here. Once someone was bullshitting me with the line "don't assume bad faith when incompetence is a possible explanation". My retort was: "the incompetent claiming competence is bad faith".

  • BiPolarMoment||

    That sounds like a rewording of Hanlon's Razor: "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity."

  • Fear of Wilderness=mediocrity||

    Mediocrity is fear-of-wilderness; that is, submitting to the agricultural city-State's distortion of the Original Affluent Society by the baseless Hobbesian mythology.

  • WTF||

    +1 wareagle

  • Mediocrity||

    ...thy name is Jason

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: White Imbecile,

    Mediocrity is fear-of-wilderness;


    Like how you will externalize your mediocrity by shitting your knickers and cry like a little girl at the sight of coyotes taking away the elk carcass you were pulling for miles if in your "original affluent society."

    Like a little, little girl. Pathetic scene.

  • Old Poodle the Nanny Statist||

    Fibertard gonna psychologically project his own fear of wilderness on everybody as an excuse for Gambol Lockdown.

  • Gambol Lockdown||

    You're right Jason. Fat is a feminist issue.

  • ||

    And if anyone knows mediocrity it's WI! Why is it whenever I try to imagine WI, Walter Mitty comes to mind?

  • Gambol Lockdown||

    Walter Fatty actually.

    Hey my brother....have you tried Gambolin to the Oldies

  • k2000k||

    Well written response Bill, honestly you should send it out to the lawmakers.

  • fish||

    I use the quotes because the grilled cheese in question was smoked gouda on artisan wheat bread with pulled pork and came with tater tots with a habanero relish.

    You bastard!

  • robc||

    You don't want to have everybody in the middle of the streets competing for space on the sidewalk without some sort of regulations.

    Actually, Im cool with that. So shut the fuck up and dont tell me what I want.

  • ||

    Yeah, isn't it great the assumptions that are made on our behalf?

  • Auric Demonocles||

    I don't know. I sure would like to have fewer options to choose from. I'd hate to be able to get food I want.

  • ||

    Freedom from choice!

    Devo knew what they were talking about even back then.

  • ||

    it's not like control-freak-bullshit was new, even back then.

  • k2000k||

    A property we manage that has, restaurants along the same street, recently started leasing out our sidewalk space to street vendors. By sidewalk space I mean like a normal sidewalk in addition to an extra 10ft that is actually our property. One thing I noticed is that none of the businesses in the area seemed to suffer a downturn. If anything more people were dinning. Why? Because when the option expanded from a pho place, a cafeteria, bbq, or brown bag, to pho, bbq, cafeteria, brown bag, ham burgers, tacos, thai, greek, and so on the increased amount of options lead an increase in a number of peopel saying "Fuck it I'm not going to brown bag my lunch today."

  • ||

    Too many people forget that the choice is not necessarily between buying your product and buying their product but between buying your product, buying their product, and buying nothing.

  • anon||

    Most brick-and-mortar establishments are going to be without a business pretty soon anyways. Of course the government is going to try to compensate by promoting brick-and-mortar establishments.

  • ||

    Threadjack. This should kill Gingrich just like Romneycare killed Romney.

    http://www.verumserum.com/?p=34603

  • BakedPenguin||

    ...it’s not a point of view libertarians would embrace. But I am more in the Alexander Hamilton-Teddy Roosevelt tradition of conservatism.

    No shit, Newcular Titties.

  • anon||

    He really might as well have just said that he's a progressive.

  • tarran||

    Everything I read about Gingrich screams stupid and energetic.

    His trajectory should hit apogee very shortly and then he'll get the humiliating collapse he deserves.

  • WTF||

    Which ideally should leave Ron Paul as the anti-Romney. At which point the MSM goes nuts over "racist newsletters".

  • anon||

    Hopefully they'll think it's a good idea to go crazy around Christmas time, when nobody cares.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: WTF,

    Which ideally should leave Ron Paul as the anti-Romney. At which point the MSM goes nuts over "racist newsletters".


    You should hear about how the neo-cons went bananas due to Paul's new anti-Newt ad. Joe Pags was fuming from the mouth because someone dared point out the truth about his much beloved "conservative."

    By the way, the so-called "racist newsletters" was such a non-event back in 2007-and 2008, it will be a totally non-event today. "What, newsletters that were written fucking 30 years ago?" Which if one bothered to read, one would find nothing in their content that was any different from other conservative publications of that era.

  • WTF||

    Paul's new anti-Newt ad was great. On the other hand, although the newsletters were no big deal back in 2007/8, Paul also was not a serious contender. If it looks like he might emerge to challenge Romney/Obama, the MSM will work overtime to try to build them into a shit storm.

  • Hank||

    Nice find, John. Though I think the rumors of Romney's death have been greatly exaggerated.

  • Fluffy Got Demoted||

    Thanks, John.

    What a surprise! Gingrich lied when he said he took Freddie's money and told them to close up shop.

    I am SHOCKED. SHOCKED to find out that Gingrich didn't tell the truth when asked about this.

  • wareagle||

    the more I see stuff like this, the more convinced I am that it is intentional. All along, liberals have sought their version of collectivist. Since Americans are not hard-wired to cooperate with that, the left infiltrated the institutional components of the country - education, bureaucracy, etc - and the cancer has grown from within. It is the liberal version of the old saw about the frog in the pot of water.

    From a school system that bred the non-thinking occupiers to endless regulation that stifle initiative, what you see is the result of a planned, relentless effort, kind of like water gradually chipping away at rock.

  • War Eagle = Collectivist||

    War is a collectivist effort, shitbird.

  • BakedPenguin||

    +1 wareagle

  • Beloved Rev. Blue Moon||

    Uh, actually, that poster has a real point.

  • Principles, how do they work?||

  • Gambol Lockdown||

    Uh, actually, that poster has a real point.

    Yeah but he's been such fucking nitwit while wearing his superhero (White Idiot) suit that everybody ignores anything interesting he might have to say.

  • ||

    +∞

    The Left's regulatory state and their supposed dedication to economic progress for the poor are completely contradictory. If you want the latter, you have to get rid of corporatism, the regulatory state and welfarism. Environmental overregulation disproportionately impacts the poor, and you seemingly need an MBA to be able to grasp all the regulatory, legal and accounting complexities starting a business involves. Welfarism encourages substandard subsistence instead of progress. And corporatism enables wealthy and politically connected private actors to use the tools of government to take control and advantage of the poor via eminent domain, environmental zoning laws, anti-competitive barriers to entry, etc.

  • ||

    And I forgot the biggest one of all: currency devaluation, which destroys the quality of life for the poor by increasing prices faster than their salaries rise.

  • anon||

    And I forgot the biggest one of all: currency devaluation, which destroys the quality of life for the poor everyone by increasing prices faster than their salaries rise.

    ftfy

  • ||

    Prop's assumption was that we'll all be poor soon anyway. so "poor" and "everyone" were synonymous.

  • ||

    and corn chips...

  • ||

    While certainly true, I guess my gist is that it disproportionately impacts the poor. Their wages are smaller so they can ill afford any jump in cost of living without cutting into basic human needs.

  • anon||

    Zoning laws alone appear to be half the problem right now in America. Having to drive ten fucking minutes to pick up a sandwich simply because no businesses are allowed near your neighborhood is shit; also creates infrastructure problems out of nowhere and impedes business growth potential.

  • shorter anon||

    damn that local control !

    *shakes fist*

  • ||

    You should see how apeshit old people in subdivisions go if you propose to build a mixed-use building on the edge of their neighborhood. Nevermind that it's going in to replace a run down apartment complex, there should never be increased traffic around their quite little area. You know traffic that makes it a safer and more economically viable neighborhood.

  • Libertarian Regulatory State||

    Gambol Lockdown is completely contradictory to freedom.

    Officer, am I free to gambol about plain and forest?

    MARX: NO!
    MISES: NO!

    The Marx-Mises axis of agricultural city-Statism.

  • BakedPenguin||

    +1 Proprietist

  • k2000k||

    +10 to the city state

  • WTF||

    +10 BP

  • BakedPenguin||

    WTF, I think k2000k is a relatively new commenter based on his / her comments upthread.

    Still, I'll take the points, because then I win the thread.

  • WTF||

    Oops, you're right. But you get to keep the points.

  • BakedPenguin||

    +5 k2000k

  • Ska||

    I'm moving to Whiterun and bringing my scorching glass bow with me.

  • Beloved Rev. Blue Moon||

    I'm going to take my gamboling to South Beach.

  • Destrudo||

    My dual-enchanted legendary daedric mace can deliver over 250 damage per swing. I named it "boomstick".

  • Gorthar||

    100 archery. 100 sneak. you. never. saw. me. coming.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Yawn.

  • anon||

    In other news, googling "gambol lockdown" leads solely to reason articles which White Indian has posted in. It's pretty funny actually.

  • ||

    The "government takes sides against the little guy" because there is no one bigger.

  • anon||

    Why is it necessarily a bad thing if we could tear down pretty useless shopping malls to build something better and more useful?

    I'm just not sure I care whether a brick and mortar store exists for pretty much anything but a restaurant/bar/entertainment venue, which I really see as the only industries able to survive being a brick-and-mortar store in the future.

  • ||

    Nah. I don't think I'm alone in wanting to be able to look at things, to browse. It's sometimes the serendipitous find or purchase that becomes a lifelong favorite. I've yet to see the website that really replicates that.

  • ||

    On the surface the permanent businesses have an unfair competition argument

    If you think, like so many do, that "unfair competitition" means "competition I am losing", then yes.

  • anon||

    I had to laugh out loud at this because I just listened to Adam Corolla's rant on the OWS morons.

  • Destrudo||

    Uh, when did you turn into a rational person? I'm getting a real replaced-by-a-pod-person vibe here.

  • ||

    "You don't want to have everybody in the middle of the streets competing for space on the sidewalk without some sort of regulations."

    OMFG teh CHAOS!

    Again the fundamentally pessimistic nature of "liberalism" rears its head. They do not merely distrust people, they fear and despise them.

  • Gambol Lockdown Nanny Statism||

    Liberals believe in it.
    Conservatives believe in it.
    Communists believe in it.

    Fibertarians believe in it too. Because they're not really for liberty in anything but their self-styled name.

    LINOs, all of you!

  • Fluffy Got Demoted||

    Rent-seeking established businesses are a big part of the problem, but not the entire problem.

    There is also an element here of upper middle class hatred of the visible poor.

    When you get beyond the "Stuff White People Like" segment of the upper middle class ("Oh, darling, look! That brown man is selling authentic Guatemalan cuisine from his cart!") you run into a segment that just plain old feels unsafe if too many poor and brown people are around. "Can't someone in city government do something about all these vagrants and hustlers?" goes the refrain.

    To that segment, street vendors are OK when you're on an urban safari, but not when you are going about your daily business. They clutter up the place and undermine the antiseptic technocratic ideal for public spaces.

  • Kelly Thomas died for your sin||

    And so do Guatemalan food carts "die" for your sin.

    For the love of money POLIS' property values is the root of all evil POLICe brutality.

    Can't have too dark of skinned people in the neighborhood, it makes me lose money!

    "Cops must be unleashed, and allowed to administer instant punishment...unleash the cops to clear the streets of bums and vagrants. Where will they go? Who cares?" ~Murray Rothbard

    In short; racialist science is properly not an act of aggression or a cover for oppression of one group over another, but, on the contrary, an operation in defense of private property against assaults by aggressors. ~Murray Rothbard

  • WTF||

    +1 Fluffy

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Fluffy Got Demoted,

    There is also an element here of upper middle class hatred of the visible poor.


    Actually, for the upper middle class' hatred for the poor that do not know their proper place. You know, those upper middle class we call the "Liberal rich."

  • o2||

    oh for pete's sake, so now the upper middle class are lub-rahlz ? jeesch

  • ||

    Let me introduce you to this little group called the Democratic Party. Their leadership is almost exclusively made up of the rich and upper middle class white people. And the last time I checked, they porported to represent liberal (read progressive) ideas on economics and government.

  • Nanny Statist Gambol Lockdown||

    It's just too dangerous out there, dear, to gambol about plain and forest.

  • Keith||

    Great post except for the mentioning of the "leftist" because your complaints are with local governments and not the FED. Point #1 the two states you mentioned are ran by conservative Governors. Point #2 these states are made of majority conservative voters. Has nothing to do with the left but rather the "Corporate Mindset" that has been instilled on the right. Has nothing to do with regulations that affect our health or interest in a global market but rather the Conservative way of thinking when it comes to corporations. Again great article on the effects of useless regulations from local govt but point the aim at your buddies who favorite the corporate mentality.

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    It seems that chinese public schools are great at teaching their students tons of english words, but have little to no instruction on how to put these words together coherently to make a decent spam ad for pirated DVD box sets...

  • first||

    Muriel is an effortlessly sexy, natural beauty who hails from Argentina.

    With her calm and easy going personality Muriel makes the perfect Hegre model – well that and the fact that she simply oozes sensuality. And with her lush figure, long dark hair and Latina good looks it is easy to see why!

    Muriel works for a large pharmaceutical company but when she isn’t working she likes to have fun. And lots of it. A happy and carefree girl Muriel likes nothing better than relaxing with good friends and a nice cold beer!

    All of this and Muriel is bi-sexual too. Now there’s a thought that is too, too hot!

    Super sexy and fun to be with, Muriel is set to bring a lot of happiness to Hegre-Art members!

  • ||

    "Street vendors don't pay property taxes. Brick-and-mortar stores must." It's all about the Benjamins baby!

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