The Case Against Government Bans on Feeding the Homeless

The backlash against prohibitions on feeding the homeless and less fortunate is underway.

During the late 1990s, when I worked as a researcher in the Judiciary Square area of downtown Washington, DC, my job required me to walk across The Mall twice each day to pick up documents at the Federal Aviation Administration and Department of Transportation.

En route, I would invariably stop to talk with Elijah, a chatty Senegalese-immigrant street vendor who sold sunglasses and similar wares from a table in front of the Starbucks on Indiana Avenue near my office.

I don’t recall how we became friendly, though I suspect we first struck up a conversation when one of us asked the other for a cigarette.

In the proceeding months, Elijah would occasionally ask me to work his table for a few minutes so he could run into a nearby restaurant to pick up lunch. During those times, I sold a few pairs of sunglasses and umbrellas—though I wasn’t very good at the job and also refused to follow Elijah’s off-the-books policy of charging white customers a premium.

Elijah had little in the way of worldly possessions. He didn’t earn much money as a street vendor. He’d been homeless, and would later become so again.

Sometimes Elijah would bring hot food back to the table, not just for himself but also to share with me and with the one or two homeless men who spent much of the day (and, I suspect, the night) on park benches near where he set up shop.

I mention Elijah’s selflessness and generosity toward me and these two men for this startling reason: While Elijah’s act of sharing food with me would be legal virtually anywhere in this country, his decision to feed the homeless men who ate with us could be illegal in many cities today. The reason for this dramatic discrepancy boils down to this fact alone: I slept with a roof over my head, but the others slept under the stars.

Such illogic has led cities like New York City, Philadelphia, and Houston to ban residents from sharing food with the homeless and less fortunate. I called such laws “unconstitutional, discriminatory, and wrongheaded” in a column I wrote over the summer. They remain so.

But since I wrote that widely read column in June, I’ve noticed a welcome pattern emerging. These unjust laws are under attack.

Shortly after my column, in which I noted my support for a new ACLU of Pennsylvania lawsuit against the city of Philadelphia over that city’s ban, a federal judge forced Philadelphia officials to back down.

U.S. District Court Judge William Yohn, Jr. issued an injunction in July that prevented the city from enforcing the ban against the plaintiffs, which include religious organizations that provide food to the homeless and less fortunate. Judge Yohn later outlined the terms of an interim agreement that heavily favors the plaintiffs—by, for example, keeping in place the injunction, ordering the city to remove any signage related to the ban, and compelling the city of Philadelphia to pay the plaintiffs’ attorney fees.

The Philadelphia victory, though not yet complete, is just one of many such recent examples.

In Chicago, for example, at least one politician, Ald. James Cappleman, recently tried to banish a Salvation Army food truck from feeding the homeless in his neighborhood. (At least his position, enraging as it may be, is consistent with the city’s larger stance against food trucks.) Soon, under pressure, Cappleman backed down.

In Seattle, city officials recently ordered the Bread of Life Mission, which had been feeding people in the city’s Pioneer Square for more than 70 years, to halt its efforts. Facing a backlash, city officials relented.

While Chicago and Seattle have scrapped such bans, other governments have been moving to protect the right of individuals and groups to share food with others.

A recently passed New Jersey law strengthens that state’s Good Samaritan Law—modeled after a largely toothless federal law of the same name—by permitting “universities to donate food to charitable organizations without fear of lawsuit[s]” over unintended food contamination. A similar law was passed recently in Nunavut, Canada. And Louisiana legislators have promised action after state health officials destroyed more than a thousand pounds of venison donated by hunters that would have been used to feed the hungry in the state.

But not everyone who claims to care about the homeless and less fortunate supports such changes.

Mark Horvath, who posts short films of the homeless at his website, urged “regulation on public feeding to homeless people” in a recent Huffington Post column, calling such donations “a heath and public safety issue!”

How can he justify his stance?

“For me,” writes Horvath, “it’s important that the food I buy in a grocery store is inspected.” As an example of what can happen if individuals are permitted to share uninspected food with the homeless, Horvath cites a story he says he heard years before “about a few college kids going around putting feces in sandwiches and giving them out to homeless people.”

Perhaps Horvath might change his mind if he knew that virtually none of the food he buys in a grocery store is inspected.

“In 2011,” reports Bloomberg News, “the FDA inspected 6 percent of domestic food producers and just 0.4 percent of importers.”

And those infinitesimal inspection figures represent one-time visits to individual producers—rather than inspections of individual products.

What’s more, tampered-food stories like the one he shared are most often hoaxes.

Even if Horvath’s shit sandwich example is true—and he presents no evidence it is—monstrous people who would tamper with food (whether donated or otherwise) already rightly face severe criminal and civil penalties.

On at least one issue, it appears Horvath and I agree.

“[H]omeless people should be treated like everyone else,” he writes.

That’s true. When the Elijahs of the world want to share food with others, the law should treat them—the homeless or the less fortunate—as dignified, suitable donors or recipients of charity. Just like everyone else.

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  • Hyperion||

    Well, we can't be letting just anyone feed the homeless, how would the government know if there was too much sodium or fat in that food?

    No, better just let them starve.

  • Mr Whipple||

    The government hates competition. If "we" the people were actually able to take care of each other and ourselves, people might realize that we don't need no stinkin' government.

  • Almanian!||

    "Please don't squeeze the Charmin"

    "There oughtta be a LAW!"

  • Mr Whipple||

    There is a law. My law, in my store, on my private property.

    Oh wait...

  • Theresa788||

    as Lisa explained I didnt even know that a student able to earn $8766 in 4 weeks on the internet. did you see this link jump15.com

  • Ted S.||

    I don't feed the homeless; I hire them to polish my monocles and pay them with lunch vouchers.

  • Hyperion||

    Not that there's anything wrong with that...

  • Ted S.||

    And I don't even pay taxes on it. Barter all the way, baby!

  • Hyperion||

    Wears monocle: Check

    Uses child labor to polish monocle: Check

    Ok, we can renew your club membership.

  • Ted S.||

    Not so fast: I haven't made any children homeless to be able to use child labor. It's all scruffy homeless adult males polishing my monocles.

  • Hyperion||

    Uh oh. Taking advantage of child labor is a must. You better get back to work.

  • Almanian!||

    You mean, "You'd better put all those KIDS back to work..." HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!

    *slaps Hyperion on back and refills glass with unicorn blood*

  • Chris Mallory||

    Barter is taxable.

  • prolefeed||

    In theory. In practice, not a lot of records of those transactions being sent to the IRS.

  • BarryD||

    -able

    That's an interesting suffix, now, isn't it.

  • crashland||

    Thanks to feeding the homeless, I no longer need a monocle. I obtained a new set of eyes from two scruffy young rascals in exchange for two $5 McDonalds gift certificates. Sure they each only have one eye, but they can still see and they earned a nice lunch.

    I even gave them each one of my old monocles in case they need it someday when their remaining eye begins to fail.

  • ||

    What a diabolical abomination. We've fucking lost it. Any cop who enforces these laws is a fucking animal, and I'll treat them as such.

  • BarryD||

    I hope you don't have any dogs.

  • SIV||

  • Jordan||

    Derp.

  • CosmoBro||

    How exactly is this a cosmotarian move? I may only drink craft beers and quality wine, but others are free to down whatever swill they wish.

  • Rich||

    Talk about wrongheadedness. Rather than just stopping such organizations from feeding the homeless, governments should *fine* them in order to obtain more money for enforcing the prohibition.

    /sarc

  • ||

    Nuke the various city halls involved in this from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

  • Almanian!||

    OH SURE, WITH ONE OF YOUR OWN NUKES, CAUSE THE SECOND AMENDMENT SAYS CITIZENS SHOULD HAVE THE SAME ARMS AS TEH GOVERNMENT AND POLICE!!1111

    DID THE COLONISTS HAVE ACCESS TO THE SAME WEAPONS AS THE BRITISH BACK IN 1776 TIMES??!!

    /idiot

  • ||

    It's hilariously awful that what you just said in jest is a real view held by millions of our neighbors.

    We're so very fucked.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    Along those lines,

    I present to you The Jezebel View on Doomsday Preppers

    Are doomsday preppers batshit weirdo lunatics or just worriers who happen to be very resourceful? The stereotypical prepper type is at least an easy punchline. You know, marginalized white dudes, crazies, ex-military, religious freaks — outlier types who take a little too easily to conspiracy theories and are paranoid, or possibly even mentally ill.
  • Almanian!||

    I did not know my wife was a "marginalized white dude". She's turned into quite the little Prepperista. I love her more for it...:)

  • RBS||

    Poor Mrs. Almanian, controlled by the power of the patriarchy.

  • An0nB0t||

    Some women enjoyed being controlled by patriarchy. In fact, they like it a lot.

    Just saying.

  • Virginian||

    People like this are why I don't tell anyone about my "stockpile"*. If the shit ever does hit the fan, the rabbits will turn very nasty after a couple days with no vegan Thai delivery.

    This kind of thumbsucking is always funny to me. "Well I'm obviously intelligent, and I don't have anything in the fridge but half of a white pizza and a bottle of wine. So clearly anyone who keeps a good amount of food on hand is a stupid redneck idiot paranoid nutbag freakshow teabagger."

    *My stockpile is a three week supply of food and water, and consists of several Rubbermaid containers full of basic food and supplies, and a few cases of bottled watter.

  • Duke||

    i should stock up on water and food being down in hurricane country. I've only got 500 rounds of 223, 600 rounds of 7.62x39 and 3,500 rounds of 22lr to gnaw on if things get ugly.

  • Virginian||

    Yeah, and people act like it's some complicated thing. It's really very simple. My emergency food is Ramen, oatmeal, candy bars, some dry snacks, a few MREs that I got cheap, canned fruits and veggies, etc. You don't need to order wheat in five gallon buckets to be a prepper. A weeks worth of food for one person easily fits into a couple standard grocery bags. It won't be exciting or excessively healthy, but it will keep you from going hungry or being forced to venture out in the snow/hurricane/zombie apocalypse to the shelter.

  • An0nB0t||

    I'll have to pick up some .30.06 to supplement my meager supply of canned goods with looter meat.

    The younger the looter, the better.

  • prolefeed||

    My stockpile is about a year's worth of Mormon food storage containers, back when I still embraced that particular brand of crazy.

  • Dweebston||

    Can't tell if begging the question, or poisoning the well...

  • yooper||

    not sure if they had an arms "gap" back then, too lazy to check , either way that's why the 2nd is written that way .
    checks and balances ,
    Ask Custer about weapon equality

  • Hyperion||

    OT:

    I was just over at the Telegraph, way over there ya know, across the pond in Eurotardia.

    In case no one has heard, the EU wants to ban all internet porn. So I couldn't help myself but to jump into the comments.

    Basically, the commentariat there, told me that us Murikans are dangerous gun crazed extremists, who take this human rights thing way too seriously.

  • ||

    I can't recall meeting anyone here in Europe who didn't anything but contempt for EU politicians and elections.

    I think what you encountered was just knee-jerk American bashing which is pretty typical for limeys.

  • Hyperion||

    It's only about 20% of them that think banning porn is a great idea. The rest of them are not too pleased with the idea, to say the least.

    But as I usually encounter on the limey sites, even the more tolerant ones have this huge anti Murikans and their guns boner.

  • Virginian||

    They really hate when we point out that despite the gun ban, their violent crime rate is three times what ours is.

    Funny how that works.

  • ||

    4.5, not three. Three was their best point in years, and it was around four years ago, I think.

  • Hyperion||

    I think they are jealous. They want guns also, but they don't have the balls to stand up to their over the top feminist governments. The reason that the EU states want to ban porn is:

    "eliminate gender stereotypes" that demean women.

    What a load of fucking shit. Why don't the European men just all become Eunuchs, they don't use those things anyway.

  • ||

    It's split both ways. I've met more Limeys than I thought I would who think guns are cool and that it's a shame they can't have any (even so, they approve of the prohibition), and far more Limeys who think we're worse than Africa for allowing people to own guns.

    That island really is a very sad little place.

  • ||

    EU states don't want to ban porn, some EU politicians do. The reasoning of course is the opposite of puritanical, purely because it exploits women.

    This is also why Sweden made prostitution illegal a few years back.

  • ||

    In case it's not obvious, I think that "reasoning" is specious as hell.

  • Sevo||

    Hyperion| 3.9.13 @ 8:59AM |#
    "I think they are jealous."

    You bet. They wish they'd have tossed George in the channel and followed our lead.

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    Agreed, Sevo. The Brits have been watching a once great Empire crumble for 300 years, and are content to living a slow death. They are just jealous of us, because we had the balls to GTFO early. Fuck 'em. And fuck their stupid ass "Royal" family.

  • ||

    Hanging on in quiet desperation is the English way. Or so I'm told.

  • robc||

    They got it right with Charles 1 and have been backtracking ever since.

  • Ted S.||

    And yet all the elites want more and more "integration". Which is the real reason the rest of Europe thought Václav Klaus was so evil. They could forgive him if he were only corrupt, because they're utterly corrupt to. But he engaged in thoughtcrime on EU matters.

  • ||

    True.

    They also felt that uppity little poor countries should just be happy that France and Germany were magnanimous enough to let them into their club in the first place.

    These people really need to learn their place, and that place is licking the boots of a France whose economy is propped up by Germany.

    How dare they take this liberty, equality, fraternity shit seriously?

  • ||

    Limey politicians are proposing heavy fines on households that don't recycle enough, or even separate their recyclable shit into state-approved categories.

    Totalitarian shithole 101.

  • ||

    And since we're OT'ing, a well-respected writer in the Daily Mail said Tea Partiers and constitutionalists think abolishing slavery was a mistake, and that Americans from "the vast middle" of the country are religious nutjobs who hate Obama because he's a progressive president.

    And this guy's considered an extreme right-winger On Limetree Island.

    I shit you not.

  • Almanian!||

    Meh - when I've have enough of teh stoopid from Brits, I just drop the, "You still mad we kicked your FUCKING ass out of our country 250 years ago, bro?"

    And leave them with a - "Well, I guess you can take solace in the fact that the sun never sets on the remnants of the British Empire..."

    Fuck 'em. Fuck ALL of 'em.

  • Hyperion||

    Those nasty limeys drink warm beer also, bunch of idiots.

  • yooper||

    due to lucas refrigeration

  • ant1sthenes||

    But at least Europeans are cooler about sex issues, unlike us prudish Americans.

  • ||

    Actually they are.

  • Virginian||

    Europeans hate us because we're all uptight Christian prudes, and Muslims hate us because we're infidel pornographers who allow our women to go around without an escort.

  • ||

    Then why don't the Muslims hate Europeans even more than Americans?

  • ||

    Who said they didn't?

  • ||

    Horseshit. A lifetime of personal experience tells me otherwise. I'm getting so fucking tired of this bullshit shtick.

    You like Czechia, I get it. And I'll even concede, since it's a country I haven't known personally, that what you're saying applies to Czechia. But do everybody a favor and cut the shit.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Read the sign. No shirt, no shoes, no address, no service.

  • sarcasmic||

    Outlaw homelessness and there will be no more homeless to feed. Laws are magic.

  • Hyperion||

    No, there is a better solution, sarc. Maybe you have heard of it.

    Just have the cops to go down to wherever they are sleeping, and beat the living shit out of them. That will fix it.

  • sarcasmic||

    Where I come from they call that "running them out of town."

  • Almanian!||

    I thought it was called "Urban Renewal"?

  • Hyperion||

    Progress, comrades!

  • An0nB0t||

    No, that's when bureaucrats tear down low-rent housing "for the good of the little people" while the denizens of said housing wail and moan on the sidelines.

  • ||

    Outlaw homelessness and there will be no more homeless to feed.

    Outlaw cancer.

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    The thing is, this is always the way with people who want to feel morally superior (i.e. not just Lefties). It isn't enough to care about what they claim to care about, and to try to do something, you have to do it THEIR WAY, or it doesn't count. And it's always been that way. The history of the progress of civilization is the history of the common people gradually learning to tell the Panjandrums to flake off. That is what the Progressives have against technology; it allows even more people to do even more things without coming to THEM.

    *spit*

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    OK, I had to google Panjandrums.

    I feel smarter now.

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    Isn't it a wonderful word? I don't even remember where I encountered it first, though it sounds like Mencken.

  • Dweebston||

    Thanks for the tip. I'd run into it reading Stephenson's Anathem, but thought it another of the (many) fictitious words he salted in that book.

  • sarcasmic||

    Liberals insist that all these government programs are necessary because individuals would never help other members of society without government coercion, and when people do help each other without coercion liberals try to outlaw the practice so as to affirm their world view.

  • Hyperion||

    That's exactly it.

  • ||

    This.

    State power has little to do with helping the less fortunate. That's just a story to dress up using violence to control people, like the poor.

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    That is certainly the effect, and when I am at my sourest I think it is the cause. But when I'm calmer I think that more of the cause is the simple arrogance that most people can fall prey to; that THAY are the ELECT - the only ones who UNDERSTAND - and that therefore HEIR plans must be what goes forward. That isn't a disease limited to those who are in power now; it is endemic to the human race and the core reason why the power of the State must be kept in check.

  • sarcasmic||

    The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

  • Dweebston||

    Possible rejoinder to the ROAAADZ argument?

  • Government Hack||

    +1

  • ||

    I think your take CSP, is more likely. It is far more likely that people are out to feel good about themselves and mistakenly choose the wrong path in doing so (usually because of an inability to comprehend second order consequences) than that they had a goal of increasing government power.

    The increase in government power is the byproduct of the unthoughtful actions rather than the intended goal. Occam's razor. Most people aren't that manipulative or smart.

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    I'm sure there are a few who scheme day and night to grab more power for themselves and their department, I just don't think they are the driving or even the guiding force behind the trend.

  • Mickey Rat||

    "Perhaps Horvath might change his mind if he knew that virtually none of the food he buys in a grocery store is inspected."

    For Horvath, government laws and regulations are magic. If one exists for a problem, you never have to worry about it again.

  • ||

    Check out the customer reviews for this year's hot new toy:

    http://www.amazon.com/Maisto-F.....B004JFMOGK

  • ||

    Does it come with a miniature Obama figurine?

  • Hyperion||

    That was the original plan, but the ears wouldn't fit into the packaging, so they had to scrap it.

  • Almanian!||

    RACI....OK, that's REALLY funny. Props to Hyperion!

  • Hyperion||

    No worries though, kids, your official Captain Dronebot action figure can be purchased separately, at toy retailers near you.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    It's a beautiful thing.

    This is the best toy ever. Finally, I can pretend that I'm a winner of the Nobel Peace Prize!
    It's like I'm sitting right there in the White House with my very own kill list!
  • ||

    Bush tested, Obama approved!

  • ||

    I bet a percentage of every sale go to Obama's Repeal the 22nd campaign.

  • RBS||

    "You've had a busy play day - You've wiretapped Mom's cell phone and e-mail without a warrant, you've indefinitely detained your little brother Timmy in the linen closet without trial, and you've confiscated all the Super-Soakers from the neighborhood children (after all, why does any kid - besides you, of course - even NEED a Super-Soaker for self-defense? A regular water pistol should be enough). What do you do for an encore?"

  • Hyperion||

    Head for the golf course?

  • RBS||

    "A toy but it's still quite dangerous. My 7-year-old son launched this in the school playground and hit a Pakistani kid in the eye. These things just can't help themselves."

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    Winner

  • Hyperion||

    I'll give RBS the win, but for the comment upthread about indefinitely detaining little Timmy, lol.

  • Ruckus||

    The comments are gold, so much snark in one place.

    "This model is a 100% accurate scale model, and you will likely be thrilled that the "for ages 3 and up" disclaimer only applies to those remotely flying the Predator, not its potential victims."

  • Almanian!||

    OT: Taking my ZX14 Ninja in for it's 15K mile valve check/adjustment. Got the ZRX1200R done last year, so that and the Honda XR are available while the Ninja's laid up - well, assuming it gets over, like, 40 degrees sometime soon.

    CAN YOU NOT FEEL THE SPRING COMING?!!

    For those of you from warm climates who want to rub it in - shut up!

    *goes back inside and wraps up in six blankets*

  • SweatingGin||

    I need to do the valve adjustment on my bandit 1200. I may actually get it out for a quick run around the block today.

  • ||

    Valve adjustments on Japanese IL4 engines are easy enough. Buy yourself a bike lift and do the valve adjustment in your garage. The cost of 2 or 3 services at the dealer will pay for the lift and any special tools you need. After that it's all free, you get the satisfaction of knowing the job was done correctly, and you don't have to freeze your balls off getting the bike to the dealer in the winter.

  • RBS||

    Reason facebook page comments are always entertaining:

    "any form of charity, government or private, interferes with capitalism's need for desperate, starving people to serve the corporate class"

  • Hyperion||

    Well, the Kochtopus can't operate without biological resources.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    I looked at that guy's profile. He's an idiot. He occupies a philosophical space that exists between Mother Gaia Rainbow Warriors and the OWS movement.

  • ||

    I swear to god that Robert Elder guy is Tony. The stupid in most of the comments (not just his) rivals huffpo or the nyt most days.

  • Mr Whipple||

    NO SOUP FOR YOU!

  • Mr Whipple||

    Related (if it wasn't covered here yet):

    http://online.wsj.com/article/.....39210.html

  • ||

    Progressivism in action. God damn them all to hell.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Never mind rent control, 80% of the public school system's graduates being unprepared college, etc...

    The important thing is that none of these people should be allowed to buy more than 16 oz of sugary drinks in one serving.

  • sarcasmic||

    Or turn up their earbuds too loud.

    "S'cuze me sir, I need to take a decibel reading of your earbuds. These are too loud. You're under arrest. What? You're comparing me to a Nazi? I'll show you Nazi, motherfucker!" *WHAP WHAP CRACK SLAM*

  • Ken Shultz||

    Where are people's priorities?

    They're worried about the homeless population exploding, New York's public school system leaving children completely unprepared for college--when there are real emergencies out there?

    Did you know there are mohels running around in New York City circumcising children without getting the parents to fill out city-approved paperwork, confirming that they understand the risks associated with circumcision?

    http://www.nysun.com/editorial.....ion/87981/

    Bloomberg's political career must depend on a never ending series of distractions. Giuliani was doing the same kinds of things before 9/11--running around trying to close titty-bars, for instance.

  • John||

    Remember when the media covered homelessness as a national crisis? Odd how the issue gets forgotten whenever there is a dem in the White House.

  • Ken Shultz||

    It's a real big problem is especially progressive cities, too.

    I've been all over this great country of ours, and when I think of places where I've seen huge flocks of homeless people, I think of New York City, San Francisco, and the People's Republic of Santa Monica.

    It's sort of like with offshore drilling. You know how no one ever proposes offshore drilling because everywhere you go, no matter the party, the wealthiest people tend to live on the coast; they're the ones making the campaign contributions; and they're the ones that don't want to see oil platforms messing up their view. It works that way with environmentalists, too--the important players on Cape Cod don't want to see a bunch of windmills on the horizon when they're staring out their picture windows either.

    Well the people on the left who make the campaign contributions in this country? A lot of them live in New York, San Francisco, and Santa Monica--and they hate the homeless screwing up their neighborhoods. Go check out the comments section of the San Francisco Chron, and you'll never hear so much hostility directed at homeless people like you will coming from the left.

    Nobody hates homeless people like the lefties of New York City, San Francisco, and Santa Monica hate homeless people.

  • John||

    Yup. But they won't do anything to solve the problem and refuse to recognize the things they do to create it

  • Ken Shultz||

    The fact that San Francisco, New York City, and Santa Monica have some of the most robust rent control laws in the country must have something to do with it.

    But they wouldn't get rid of rent control--because that would require them to turn their whole worldview upside down.

  • ||

    The homeless are a pretty mobile group. Wouldn't it make more sense to say that progressive policy attracts homeless people? Homeless people go where there are support programs, and liberal guilt makes support programs more likely in rich, liberal neighborhoods QED homeless people camped out near rich, liberal neighborhoods.

  • Ken Shultz||

    The fact that no one bothers to build affordable housing in a rent controlled neighborhood is just too obvious a problem for this commercial real estate developer to ignore.

    And there's stuff like this, looking at what happened in Cambridge, Mass after rent control was lifted in 1994.

    • In Cambridge, investment increased by approximately 20% over what would have been the case if rent control had been maintained.

    • Investment increases occurred across a wide variety of settings; both affluent and modest income neighborhoods experienced an “investment boom”.

    http://www.nmhc.org/files/Cont...../cr_36.pdf

    The fact that San Francisco and New York City remain among the most unaffordable places to live in the country--despite rent control--probably shouldn't be ignored either. It's not as if rent control were delivering inexpensive, quality apartments to the average renter, either.

  • Sevo||

    'The fact that San Francisco and New York City remain among the most unaffordable places to live in the country--BECAUSE OF rent control'

    Fixed.
    In my block in SF, 15 (count 'em, 15!) units that were rental units have been converted to A) Part of a single family, B) TIC, C) Professional offices, D) Condo, E) Short term vacation rental.
    Most all of the conversions were done by card-carrying progs, but, see, that rent control really wasn't an issue! No siree!

  • Sevo||

    "QED homeless people camped out near rich, liberal neighborhoods."

    Not in SF!
    Those guilty progs make sure the handouts aren't located anywhere near their homes, and the cops seem to make sure no one camps under the bushes in those neighborhoods.
    The guilt is certainly there, but the homeless are kept *THERE* also.

  • ||

    Haha, that's a fair tweak two what I said, the only thing worse than their liberal guilt is their NIMBYism.

  • ||

    It's a real big problem is especially progressive cities, too.

    So, what you're saying is, those areas that most embrace progressive policies, have the largest problems...

    Odd that.

  • Ken Shultz||

    It's hard for some people to believe that interfering in the market might...interfere with the market, and Progressives are highly susceptible to that kind of thinking.

    Talking to Progressives about how markets work is like talking to creationists about how evolution works. It's one of the things that makes Progressives America's most horrible people.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Honestly, they don't care if their policies make more homeless families--just so long as their policies are against Reagan.

    ...or Bush or Nixon. It depends on the age of the Progressive in question.

  • ||

    I cannot, for the life of me, figure out why.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "U.S. District Court Judge William Yohn, Jr. issued an injunction in July that prevented the city from enforcing the ban against the plaintiffs, which include religious organizations that provide food to the homeless and less fortunate."

    It's hard to believe that people's religious convictions could be so important that they might get in the way of some city ordinance hating on the homeless.

  • John||

    Diane Feinstein might be the dumbest and most hateful person on the face of the earth.

    http://www.realclearpolitics.c.....ments.html

  • Sevo||

    Pretty sure Boxer and Pelosi are duking it out for that award. Feistein is a close 3rd.

  • John||

    It is certainly a battle of titans.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Warpath Warren is still getting warmed up.

    I wonder why she was put on the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs?

    Seems like it would be a natural fit for her.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Should read, "I wonder why she [wasn't] put on the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs?"

    But you probably already knew that.

  • Sevo||

    "It is certainly a battle of titans."
    Yes, certainly a battle worth watching! Feinstein has amazing durabiity, while Pelosi sometimes misses a game for 'medical' reasons.
    Boxer is always there, but her handlers occasionally lose control and she can wander off in other directions.
    We'll keep a close eye on this. Tune in for updates often!

  • ||

    Californians deserve everything they voted for.

  • Ken Shultz||

    What about the ones who voted for someone else or didn't vote?

    That's millions of people who didn't deserve any of it!

  • ||

    So MOVE! I don't understand how anyone could stand to live under such conditions.

    It's not like it's 51-49% nutjobs to normal folks, and there is a possibility of it getting better. CA will collapse. It's just a question of how long they can put it off. Does anyone really believe that progressive CA voters will come to their senses and realize what caused their demise? No, they will blame the minority and double down.

    Get out before they build a fence.

  • Irish||

    http://www.beyondchron.org/new.....temid=9994

    California liberals are the best.

    There's nothing inherently wrong with that. California Republicans do not reflect the values or desires or diversity of their state and so they are a dying party. Parties that get out of step with their electorates die - it has happened before (Federalists and Whigs aren't on the ballot) and more importantly, it is a good thing. It is a sign that democracy still works, even in a state with serious structural problems.

    You see, California Republicans are out of step with an electorate that's allowed California to have an unemployment rate higher than the national average every month for 20 years and caused massive gas prices that are crushing the poor.

    The nicest thing you could say about the California GOP is that they don't represent the values of their dipshit constituents.

  • Ken Shultz||

    There are actually a lot of great things about living in California. And there are plenty of opportunities for hardworking people, too.

    The place certainly isn't as heavily regulated as New York or Boston. Anyway, more than 40% of Californians voted against Obama, Moonbeam, et. al. Cultural conservatives and anti-immigrant people elsewhere in the country have lost us the California swing voter to the dark side, but all is not lost.

    Even the people we're hemorrhaging, the ones that are leaving are mostly the unskilled, low-wage earners. I remember when my brother was working on Wall Street, I'd go to visit him and wonder how he could live there in NYC. Makin' a ton of money, but you're still living in a tiny apartment in a cesspool.

    He used to say that after a while, you forget you're living in a shit hole, and you start to think everyone else must live in a shit hole, too.

    In a few weeks, after I start up my regular swim in the ocean, I'll take a few days off, ride my bike through a hundred miles of twisties up in the Sierras, and I'll probably do some packing in the mountains around Sequoia and down through Kings Canyon. ...and on the way back, as I'm cruising down PCH past Big Sur, I'll be sure to think about how shitty it is to live in California.

    P.S.

    http://www.onthesnow.com/calif.....eport.html

    P.P.S. Do you really want all us Southern Californians to move up with you in Montana?

  • ||

    Do you really want all us Southern Californians to move up with you in Montana?

    Not real concerned. MT Fish Wildlife and Parks has opened a season on Californians and Greenies. It keeps the herds down. 1 Jan-31 Dec. No limits. ;-)

  • Irish||

    In a few weeks, after I start up my regular swim in the ocean, I'll take a few days off, ride my bike through a hundred miles of twisties up in the Sierras, and I'll probably do some packing in the mountains around Sequoia and down through Kings Canyon. ...and on the way back, as I'm cruising down PCH past Big Sur, I'll be sure to think about how shitty it is to live in California.

    Which just makes it worse what liberals have done to that state. They've absolutely destroyed the cities and made it impossible for low income individuals to even live in wide swaths of California. Those places in California that are affordable to low income people are crime riddled, decrepit and have some of the worst educational systems in the country.

    Honestly, there's no excuse for California to be as bad as much of it is. You have beautiful coasts, beautiful land, beautiful women and two major industries in the form of Silicon Valley and Hollywood. Fucking that up takes talent only the Democrats possess.

  • Ken Shultz||

    That's disgraceful.

    Scapegoating veterans shouldn't surprise me.

  • John||

    And you can't feed the bums anymore than you can feed the pigeons.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Nobody hates homeless people like the lefties of New York City, San Francisco, and Santa Monica hate homeless people.

    Of course, the dumb bastards never quite latch onto the realization that many of their preferred policy prescriptions exacerbate homelessness.

    Out here, the lefty dogooders weep and wail about "affordable housing" as they busily pursue policies aimed at destroying the ultimate affordable housing solution; trailer parks. Hundreds of trailers have been swept away in the past five years, most of which have been replaced by nothing at all. One particular park was sold for a pie in the sky development which fizzled with the real estate bust. Now, it's a huge eyesore, with decrepit disintegrating trailers overgrown with weeds. Needless to say, the last thing any socially responsible person wants to see is a bunch of poor people dragging trailers back in and wrecking the view.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Recall yesterday's discussion of Norma (Jane Roe) McCorvey and how dumb and messed-up she is for switching from being pro-choice to being prolife?

    Look who she endorsed for President in 2008:

    "she was lighthearted today. "When you're president," she asked Paul, "can I stay over at the White House?"

    ""Anytime," Paul said. The supporters in the back of the room cracked up.

    ""I'll take the Lincoln Bedroom," said McCorvey.

    "UPDATE: Paul said that he found McCorvey compelling because she changed her mind on abortion in 1995..."

    http://reason.com/blog/2008/01.....s-ron-paul

  • John||

    Recall yesterday's discussion of Norma (Jane Roe) McCorvey and how dumb and messed-up she is for switching from being pro-choice to being prolife?

    Why does anyone think that? A lot of women are very traumatized by having abortions. Who the hell am I or anyone else to say McCorvey is mess up for changing her mind about something after having the experience?

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    The focus was on the bad choices she made in her life when she was pro-choice, like getting married early to an abusive husband, getting knocked up outside of marriage, falsely claiming that she was raped by Mexicans, etc.

    The thing is that when she was prochoice the choicers knew about her bad life choices and still chose to highlight her as a heroic figure fighting the patriarchal oppressive etc. They sponsored a movie and book about her heroic struggle. It's only when, after spending years in the choicer movement and working at an abortion clinic, that she switched sides, that her prior bad choices were deemed to invalidate her perspective.

    After all, if it wasn't for women making bad choices, the profits of the abortion biz would be considerably reduced. Plus, there is no such thing as bad choices where an oppressed wombyn is concerned. Only when she goes over to the Dark side do her bad choices when she was pro-abortion suddenly take on moral significance.

  • John||

    No one hates women more than the abortion movement.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    And the interesting thing is that she didn't actually abort the baby whose fate was the ostensible focus of the *Roe* decision. But she did go to work in an abortion clinic, where some prolifers moved in next door and persuaded her to switch sides.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    And in view of comments yesterday that nobody paid attention to her until she switched to the prolife side, here is a description of her celebrity status back when she was a choicer:

    "Holly Hunter would win an Emmy for playing McCorvey (renamed “Ellen Russell”) in Roe vs. Wade, an NBC television movie that aired the following month. [Attorney Gloria] Allred took McCorvey on as a client and introduced her around. “Her name,” wrote Knight-Ridder reporter Sue Reilly, “was on the lips of people like Cybill Shepherd, Gloria Steinem, Jesse Jackson, Marlo Thomas, Glenn Close, Jane Fonda and about 500,000 others amassed in support of Roe v. Wade.”

    "Accompanied by Allred, McCorvey flew to Los Angeles for a brunch at the restaurant Baci with a roomful of pro-choice activists, including Leonard Nimoy and Valerie Harper, who paid $100 a plate to attend."

    http://www.vanityfair.com/cult.....e-abortion

  • robc||

    Approximately half of all abortions result in the death of a woman.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    A little more than half, actually -- your chance of getting aborted if you're a girl is slightly higher than if you're a boy, and there are of course some complications inherent in any medical procedure which may result in the death of the prospective mother, as well.

  • ||

    Plus, there is no such thing as bad choices where an oppressed wombyn is concerned. Only when she goes over to the Dark side do her bad choices when she was pro-abortion suddenly take on moral significance.

    That's really all you need to know about the left right there: lefty women are incapable of making choices be definition. Non-lefty women can make choices, but since they're non-lefty they invariably make the wrong ones. Remind me, who's oppressing women?

  • Irish||

    That's not at all what that conversation was about. No one was arguing that she was dumb for switching from being pro-choice to pro-life, people were arguing that she seems to switch her opinion with such frequency that she probably hasn't thought that position through, regardless of where she currently stands.

    Don't lie about what other people were arguing.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Spare me - I'm primarily targeting the jezebel fembots and the linked *Vanity Fair* article - linked in the earlier thread. The "unreliability of someone who keeps changing their mind" meme is amusing, but not relevant to the fact that the choicers built up McCorvey and then tried to throw her down the memory hole when she switched sides.

    She only switched views on the abortion issue *once.* Religiously, she went to evangelical Protestantism and then to Catholicism, which seemed to provoke amused commentary in the earlier thread - is not the central matter I was focusing on, but by the standards of, say, Orestes Brownson, she's not very changeable at all:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orestes_Brownson

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    Thanks, Eduard -- that was the point I was trying to make when I provided the link. I have no idea how messed up McCorvey currently is, and it wouldn't shock me to find that she's still not on the up-and-up -- I also don't really care. It's pretty gross to see feminists who supported her secular beautification turn on a dime to slut-shame -- it's not too different from the hypocrisy which compels feminists to pretend that Bill Clinton is a great guy and devoted feminist when his personal life is filled with the sort of stuff that feminists supposedly declaim.

    The Christian equivalent would be if, say, everyone had been OK with the Catholic priests who molested children under their care and talked about their victimization, etc. and then turned around to criticize that same person if he converted to Islam or something.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    they wouldn't get rid of rent control--because that would require them to turn their whole worldview upside down.

    Not to mention the fact that Junior will benefit greatly by moving into Grandma's rent controlled apartment which has been in the family since 1872, and paying the sort of rent the less fortunate might pay for a duplex in Gary, Indiana.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    [I] refused to follow Elijah’s off-the-books policy of charging white customers a premium.

    First you say you were researching the FAA, and then you say you don't believe in (understand?) multi-level pricing?

  • ||

    Merry DST eve everyone. The happiest day of the year!

  • Ted S.||

    Except for those wackos in Arizona.

  • Rhywun||

    I think you're confusing today with End of DST Eve.

  • MPH||

    Not sure how I feel about any such law restricting free association...

    However...

    What comes to mind is Tompkins Square Park in NYC, where activist "homeless rights" groups hand out free food to heroin addicts and alcoholics. The food often attracts hundreds of such people, who after eating, overrun the park (with drug dealers also lurking, attracted by the large and open marketplace for their goods). During such times, the park is no longer safe for families and children, as many of the people there for the free food are mentally unstable and aggressive towards anyone who might be in their path. Such people belong in institutions rather than public parks, since they are dangers to themselves and the general public.

  • califernian||

    It’s time for these all bans to stop.

    FTFY

  • SumpTump||

    Those guys just dont even know anymore man.

    www.AnonNet.da.bz

  • Great+Grandma||

    Hurray for Baylen J. Linnekin!!! We need more people like him in this country. Too many of us are willing to knuckle under an unjust government because either we don't care enough to do something or we are also unjust.

  • ||

    One of my FTO's in Maui would spend part of nearly every shift checking on a few homeless guys he had befriended, and sharing some home cooked food he'd bring along for them. You could see that it meant a lot to these homeless guys that this big, friendly Hawaiian cop went out of his way to treat them as equals and share his home cooked meals.

    Bizarre Foods had an episode in San Francisco about some of the groups that go dumpster diving and then cook up meals for the homeless. It sounds gross, but restaurants and grocery stores often throw away some pretty choice food.

    According to the group that provides these meals San Francisco used to come down hard on them and others that were feeding the homeless, but the city has recently come around to a grudging acceptance of such practices and it's basically laissez faire towards them now, which is good.

    In addition to a govt. safety net (welfare), we should be encouraging PRIVATE parties, whether church related or whatever in their efforts to feed people who need food. It's such a basic act of human kindness, the idea that in the city of brotherly love, Philadelphia, they could move to ban the simple act of feeding the homeless is just unconscionable.

  • SusanM||

    "...such a basic act of human kindness, the idea that in the city of brotherly love, Philadelphia..."

    Obviously you've never been to an Eagles game.

  • Stan-75||

    Nolan. if you think Edith`s blog is something, yesterday I bought a great Jaguar XJ since getting a cheque for $7846 this last four weeks and more than ten thousand this past-month. it's actualy the most-comfortable job I've ever done. I started this 10-months ago and straight away was making more than $78 per hour. I went to this website, http://www.wow92.com

  • ygsrf||

    Which is the best blog for us.we are enjoy it and will show them to everyone.

  • Sonderegger||

    Shortly after my column, in which I noted my support for a new ACLU of Pennsylvania lawsuit against the city of Philadelphia over that city’s ban, a federal judge forced Philadelphia officials to back down.

    U.S. District Court Judge William Yohn, Jr. issued an injunction in July that prevented the city from enforcing the ban against the plaintiffs, which include religious organizations that provide food to the homeless and less fortunate. Judge Yohn later http://www.toneweras.com/new-e.....-c-52.html outlined the terms of an interim agreement that heavily favors the plaintiffs—by, for example, keeping in place the injunction, ordering the city to remove any signage related to the ban, and compelling the city of Philadelphia to pay the plaintiffs’ attorney fees.

    The Philadelphia victory, though not yet complete, is just one of many such recent examples.

  • Dan Clore||

    Good article, but should have mentioned Food Not Bombs, frequent target of such laws.

  • BP Black||

    Keep up the great work. It's the kind of issue on which my drinking buds from the left and right find agreement. The tide is turning, if yesterday's judicial smackdown of Mayor Bloomberg's soda ban is an indication.

  • juliabraon||

    my roomate's sister-in-law makes $74 hourly on the laptop. She has been fired from work for seven months but last month her pay check was $16116 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Read more on this site

    http://fly38.com

  • Bryan C||

    "Mark Horvath, who posts short films of the homeless at his website, urged “regulation on public feeding to homeless people”..."

    Regulations on feeding people. So much of leftist thought, from foreign policy to environmentalism to social science, seems dedicated to the proposition that we'd be much better off as zoo animals. Properly fed, clothed, bedded, and culled as necessary. Horvath's ilk would happily walk us all into our nice safe cages and hand the keys to their all-wise Keeper.

  • gomezkeralen||

    If you think Clara`s story is unimaginable..., last week my sisters father in law recieved a check for $8848 just sitting there twenty hours a week from there house and there friend's aunt`s neighbour was doing this for nine months and errned over $8848 in there spare time On there computer. use the information at this address...
    http://jump30.com

  • rachelpool4||

    up to I looked at the paycheck 4 $7768, I have faith ...that...my neighbours mother realey bringing home money in there spare time on-line.. there great aunt haz done this for less than 12 months and by now took care of the mortgage on there house and bourt a new Renault 4. we looked here,
    http://jump30.com

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