Rent control

Rent Control Bomb Set Off in New York City by De Blasio Rent Guidelines Board

Neutron bombs could not have emptied and destroyed the Bronx more effectively than did rent control.



Back in the late 1970s, I was couch-surfing with a doctor friend who had an apartment in the North Bronx. I rode the subway every day past hundreds of abandoned apartment buildings to my job in mid-town Manhattan. The city government had installed and painted thousands of fake windows in the tenements so that we commuters evidently wouldn't be too depressed by viewing the devastation. Neutron bombs could not have emptied and destroyed the Bronx more effectively than did rent control.

Now the economic loons who inhabit New York City's Rent Guidelines Board voted 7 to 2 to freeze one-year rents on the more than one million apartments it regulates. From the New York Times:

It also was the first decision on rent levels by a nine-member board appointed in its entirety by Mayor Bill de Blasio.

The board, one of the few tools the mayor has to directly influence the cost of housing in the city, also voted to increase rents on two-year leases by 2 percent, a historic low.

The mayor refrained from publicly calling for a rent freeze as he had done last year. But his housing plan aims at building new affordable housing while staving off the loss of existing affordable units — either through rent increases or the removal of stabilized apartments from regulation.

Mr. de Blasio, a Democrat, praised the decision: "We know tenants have been forced to make painful choices that pitted ever-rising rent against necessities like groceries, child care and medical bills. Today's decision means relief."

The crowd at the Great Hall at Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art in Manhattan erupted in loud cheers and chanting. Many tenants and their advocates were thrilled, even though they had earlier said they hoped for rent reductions. …

Joseph Strasburg, the president of the Rent Stabilization Association, which represents 25,000 landlords, called the rent freeze an "unconscionable, politically driven decision to carry out de Blasio's campaign promise of two years ago."

"A rent freeze on the surface may sound pro-tenant," he said, "but the reality is landlords will now have to forgo repairing, maintaining and preserving their apartments, which will trigger the deterioration of quality, affordable housing de Blasio pretends to care about."

The operative word is "pretends."

A 2009 review of 140 economics studies on rent control in the Economics Journal Watch found that economists overwhelmingly agreed that  "A ceiling on rents reduces the quantity and quality of housing available."

From the abstract:

I find that the preponderance of the literature points toward the conclusion that rent control introduces inefficiencies in housing markets. Moreover, the literature on the whole does not sustain any plausible redemption in terms of redistribution. The literature on the whole may be fairly said to show that rent control is bad, yet as of 2001, about 140 jurisdictions persist in some form of the intervention.

Rent control: A slow, but incredibly effective way to dismantle an entire city brick by brick.

NEXT: What Ever Happened to Jim Webb?

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  1. New Yorkers will finally get the housing they so richly deserve.

    1. Does the frisson you get from your collectivism counter how much of a shithead it makes you? I’m guessing it must or you wouldn’t do it.

      1. 50%+1 New Yorkers will finally get the housing at least that many of them so richly deserve. 50%-1 New Yorkers along for the ride anyway.

        1. I’d say closer to the 17% of New Yorkers who actually voted for Deblasio.

          1. Jeez, and I thought the voters were apathetic here!

            OK, I will restate that:

            “50%+1 of New Yorkers who are eligible to and can actually be arsed to vote will finally get the housing at least that many of them so richly deserve.

            50%-1 of New Yorkers who are eligible to and can actually be arsed to vote, children, felons, and everyone who is eligible but can’t be arsed to vote, along for the ride anyway.”


            1. No, because rent control has been in force for decades and it’s gonna take a herculean effort to get rid of it – an effort that no viable candidate* is going to offer.

              *Viable candidates include those who are tall or have a kid with a giant afro.

      2. Let me guess: you’re from Boston?

      3. Does the frisson you get from your collectivism counter how much of a shithead it makes you? I’m guessing it must or you wouldn’t do it.

        I’ll keep this in mind the next time you pen a page-long thesis explaining to the world “the way progressives think”.

  2. Rent Control Bomb Set Off in New York City by De Blasio Rent Guidelines Board

    For a minute there, I thought this was going to be about a landlord who had finally had ENOUGH!

    1. And, hey – finally got the blockquotes right today.

      1. And, hey – finally got the blockquotes right today.

        You know who else got blockquotes right some days?

          1. Blockquotes, maybe. Links? Never.

    2. I’m looking forward to watching Yankees’ games with burning apartment buildings in the background again. Loved that when I was a kid – one of my first lessons on the consequences of big government.

      1. Really? That happened?

        1. Yes. Landlord’s at the end of their ropes due to inflation, escalating property taxes and rent control were known to sometimes burn their buildings down and walk away with the insurance money.

          1. sometimes called “Jewish lightning” (disclaimer, that was the humorous name that was widely circulated, I am no anti-semite)

            1. Good band name.

              1. They could open for the Macabeats!

                1. Or the Hip Hop Hoodios, or the Meshuggah Beach Party (real groups, don’t know if they’re still around).

          2. Old joke:

            Jim and Bob are lying on the beach in Florida.

            Jim says “I used to own an apartment building in New York until it was destroyed in a fire. I retired on the insurance.”

            Bob says “”That’s funny, I used to own an apartment building in New York until it was destroyed by a flood. I retired on the insurance.”

            There is a long pause.

            Jim says in a low voice “How do you start a flood?”

        2. You can see it in that Spike Lee movie about the 70s – name escapes me. Right around the same time as Son of Sam. Those days appear to be returning quickly

      2. Did people hang burning mattresses out the windows like they did in the housing projects that used to be across from Comiskey in Chicago?

        1. Sounds racist

        2. The ones who were raped on burning mattresses did.

  3. OT:

    Obama shoots rainbow out of his …hand

    He truly is the Lightbringer.

    1. Well, he *did* promise to lower the sea levels – this is just a reminder of his original compact with Noah that he wouldn’t flood the earth again.

      1. How’s it going, by the way?

        Everything okay with you?

        1. Yeah, everything’s fine. This wouldn’t be the first time I’ve had an ‘investigation’ started that didn’t go anywhere but was intended to intimidate me (and, once, deflect blame from other parties).

          1. It goes without saying, we’re all pulling for you. It will end eventually and then you can get drunk and divulge all the awful details like SJW who’s been date raped.

            1. Except it won’t be like a SJW date rape because, in your case, it will actually have happened.

            2. Well, unlike a rape-story, this will actually never end.

              See, the way investigations work is either they find something – and then the indictments are handed down, or they don’t, in which case the file is put away, but never closed.

              There will never be a point where the AUSA is going to send me a letter saying they didn’t find enough evidence, so they are dropping the case.

              In both of the other investigations I mentioned above, at no point was I found ‘innocent’, they simply couldn’t find enough evidence of guilt fast enough before they turned their attention elsewhere. The most recent one was 5 years ago and ‘technically’ its still open – even though I’ve since left the military – its just filed and forgotten, for now.

              1. Isn’t there some kind of statute of limitations?

                1. That’s a years long thing. And there are so many ways to stop the clock. Simply moving to AZ means that any potential crime I’ve committed in CA will never be limited by the SoL.

      2. Yes, how is the anal probe going?

        *snark aside, I hope you’re OK given everything that’s going on*

    2. *barf*

      Such blatant authority fellating is disgusting.

      1. Which makes me wonder if Mother Jones spits or swallows.

        1. They swallow. It’s their only form of nourishment each day.

          1. No, they also suck ass.

            1. Well those asses aren’t gonna suck themselves you know.

              1. Sounds like a two-legged centipede.

      2. Hey, now. You’re microagressing the president. Obviously you’re a secret or not so secret racist.

        Little known fact, Obama farts Channel #5 and shits skittles.

        1. I sure hope he’s not triggered. Wouldn’t want him to have to go to his safe space.

          1. Valerie Jarrett’s closet?

    3. He is like Jesus with an aura around his head.

      1. I was thinking My Little Pony

    4. That picture is just pathetic. And hey, maybe Obama is backhanding the rainbow? How about that, huh?

      1. That came out a while ago, and it was pathetic then.

    5. So Obama throws a Seig Heil near a rainbow, and the rainbow is the newsworthy part?

    6. At least the North Koreans can say that they were threatened with death camps to make them worship their leader as a God-king; Americans worship theirs voluntarily.

  4. Yeah, it’s ok though cause we need limited government, and also, once we add some more ink to that paper they already swear to defend but don’t, they will this time as they marvel at the new ink and new rules. With the right people in there, they will limit their powers.


    1. At its worst, still better than anarchism

      1. How is mini slavery better than being free? You have this “top men” fetish where you somehow think socialism is magically efficient and effective when gov’t does only what you want.

        Sadly, even your most cherished argument of standing armies that bother everyone the world over, was done more effectively and efficiently through privateering and private means. Just because they ban them, doesn’t make the monopoly better.

        The privateers and corsairs outdid anything the navies of the government could accomplish. Shipbuilding was more efficient when build privately, and didn’t suffer the gross cost overruns that government ships did and mysteriously still suffer from.

        To claim socialism can produce quality and efficient forces despite the misallocation of resources and capital that occurs is nonsensical.

    2. As long as there is a gang of men with the last word in violence (which gives them license to plunder, because who is going to stop them?), government will exist in some form. It’s unavoidable.

      Best to try to limit them with a system of law. It ain’t perfect, but it’s better than totally unchecked power.

    3. Remember: minarchism has failed every single time it’s been tried, because government always grows. Therefore it will always turn into tyranny. So that means we should try it again, but harder! And if we just TOP MEN design it better this time, it’ll work! Really!

      1. If only there was some group, like a Supreme Court, that would check the growth of governmental power by enforcing some supreme law of the land, like a Constitution.

        1. One advantage to Canada over America: you guys have too many elections for too many bodies/people. I am not convinced the ‘separation of power’ between the senate and house does anything but 1) make ‘undo’ impossible and 2) force the state to just outsource the power to Admin like the EPA. Also, ‘lieutenant governors’? Seriously?

          1. The ‘separation of power’ between the Senate and the House was eliminated with the 17th Amendment. The Senate was never intended to be popularly elected. They were to represent, and be appointed by, the individual state governments. So if the House passed some unfunded mandate or other imposition on the state governments (like Obamacare for example), the state governments could block it in the Senate. But the 17A made the Senators popularly elected, so now the state governments have no representation in Washington.

            1. Yeah, everyone always looks at me like I’m (even more) crazy when I suggest the repeal of the 17th Amendment. *sigh*

            2. The 17th amendment did practically nothing. If it hadn’t been ratified, within a few yrs. all the states would’ve been electing their US senators popularly anyway, as they’d already started doing. I doubt any state would’ve stood vs. that flow much longer.

      2. This is like saying ‘life has failed every time because you die eventually’.

        1. So you’re saying that’s a false statement? Limited government stays limited? Laws with unintended consequences are repealed instead of used as an excuse for more laws to deal with the consequences? Temporary government programs stay temporary? Seriously?

          1. I’m saying its useless.

            1. I don’t think it’s useless at all. Sure there’s little that can be done about it, but there’s nothing useless about pointing out the truth. At the least it’s useful in recognizing reality for what it is, instead of something that you want it to be.

        2. That’s what I was going to write too.

          You know what? It’s true. Did Burr or Hamilton “win” their duel? From here it looks like a tie; they’re both dead. All the wars from long enough past ended in ties, same reason.

          And eventually, frozen ice ball, as per Robert Ringer.

      3. We just need to build in a mechanism for tearing it down to the ground from time to time. At the very least, a mechanism for (non-violent) secession should be built in from the beginning.

        1. So you’re saying that if we just TOP MEN design it right this time, it’ll work? Those other TOP MEN who tried, like Jefferson, they were just not TOP MEN enough. No, this time, it’ll work. Really.

          1. Yes. This is called ‘iteration’. Sometimes, it takes more than one try.

            1. You’re forgetting this thing called ‘human nature,’ which among other things means that people with power will seek to keep and expand their power. People do not seek power for the purpose of dismantling it. Thus governments will always grow, because the people with power are going to seek to grow their power. And no one can stop them, because that’s what having power means: people without power cannot stop you. That’s why the Framers set up a system of checks and balances. So people with power could check others with power. Except that that pesky human nature thing crept in, and now the checks have become rubber stamps.

              1. Despite being an anarchist, I’d take another iterative attempt that put us back where the Founding was over what we’ve got now

              2. So what was up with that Washington dude refusing to become “King” or turning down a third term?

              3. And people without power seek power. Anarchism is ludicrous. Government of some form is inevitable. Tear one down and a new hierarchy will arise in its place. That is human nature. Indeed, it’s logic. Even people who don’t want power for its own sake will seek to exert control over others for perfectly rational reasons like security (“I can only be sure you won’t hurt me and my family if I have you in chains, or buried in the ground”) or resources.

                If sustainable anarchy were possible, it would already exist.

          2. Not really, I’m saying that we need to get out of the mindset that governments are forever and be willing to tear them down to the bedrock periodically – not as an absolute last resort, but as a regular thing.

          3. If it put us back where the country was at the Founding, and got us another 200 years down the road, it’d be better than what we have now.

            And, also, yes. Clearly there have been some things that actually are improvements over the original of Jefferson and Madison. Slavery, for instance.

            Likewise, I think there are definitely some solutions to be gleaned from the past 238 years of history regarding the subject of checks and balances. “Anyone who voted for a law that is found unconstitutional is fired, forever” might be a good helper.

        2. Bankruptcy is a start.

        3. The Woodchipper Amendment?

          1. Make that ‘amendments’. It’s going to take awhile to chip away at the Leviathan we have created.

      4. Remember: minarchism has failed every single time it’s been tried

        You could say the same for anarchy as well. After all, minarchy came from somewhere.

        1. In a state of anarchy, men will band together to use force to get what they want, and their victims will band together (or hire another gang) to fight them off. Eventually there will exist some gang men who have the last word in violence in some geographical area, and they become government.

          1. Anarchy does not mean ‘without government’ it simply is ‘voluntary’ government.

            So you band together to protect yourself for as long as that is profitable. If its profitable to band together with a larger group, you do that. When its no longer in your interest you go your separate ways.

            Anarchy (ideally) really just ends up being a bubbling mish-mash of temporary minarchies sprouting up and dying.

            The rise of the person-state, to coin a phrase.

            1. What about those who band together not for protection, but for plunder? How do you fight them off without simply replacing them? Someone is going to have the last word in violence. What stops them from using that as license to steal under the guise of taxation?

              1. The point that you seem to actually half-get is that yes, that shit is going to happen. It does under the government we have now, and it would happen under a lack of government. No one here is denying that. One thing that we are saying, and that you seem to get, is that trying to pretend the plundering is not plundering by setting up a few ground rules and calling it “law” is just papering over what it really is and providing cover to the plunderers.

                Only people who actually, astoundingly believe that people who are elected to make and uphold the law will actually stick to the law themselves could possibly want a government.

                1. I’ve been saying that laws are fine – until you reach the point of diminishing returns. And if you keep up with the diminishing returns, you will wind up with so many laws that you essentially have none.

                  We started reaching the point of diminishing return in the 1910’s. if the creation of the Federal Reserve Bank wasn’t enough to convince people, Prohibition certainly should have been. But we keep steamrolling ever more law into existence that we’re almost to the point of anarchy by overdose. Until it burns itself out, I’m just going to try to find entertainment amongst the entropy and survive as best I can.

                  1. I have this recurring dream where the DEA, FBI, and ATF wage a shooting war between themselves. Can this happen? This entropy? Pleeeeeeaaaase?

              2. Either you’re paying them voluntarily or they’re stealing. The ‘service’ provided is the same either way, the only difference is whether its voluntary or not.

                If you’re saying that things will always devolve to men ‘forcing’ their protection on you – then obviously anarchism is not viable and minarchism is the next thing to try.

                1. If you’re saying that things will always devolve to men ‘forcing’ their protection on you

                  Yes, that’s exactly what I’m saying. And it’s not a matter of like or dislike, it’s just the logical conclusion of combining human nature with organized violence. I would like nothing more than to dismantle the state and live in a society where everything, even protection, was voluntarily purchased. But I don’t believe such a world can exist, since nothing stops the protectors from becoming plunderers except the kindness of their hearts.

        2. Anarchy is not a political system. It is a philosophical system. It merely recognizes that humans are humans and attempting to create any type of one-size-fits-all “legal system” will always fail, because humans are individuals.

          This is the mistake non-anarchists always make. You project your own beliefs and ideas onto individualist anarchists. You think that anarchism is just another political system like minarchism or representative democracy or communism. It’s not. It’s a philosophy that says that all that shit will fail, because humans don’t operate that way.

          1. Epi,

            I am not projecting my beliefs or ideas onto anyone. I am well aware that you think anarchy isn’t a political system, but a philosophical system. But in the end that is irrelevant, because man simply is incapable of leaving their fellow man alone to live their life as they see fit. And the fact that any political system will fail, is again irrelevant, because during the intervening time period, you will be subject to the force of other, stronger forces.

          2. Yes but the definition of the word “anarchy” is literally no-government. Which is NOT the most effective way to protect the individual. The US Constitution, while not perfect, is about as man as come to some sort of way to protect the rights of the individual. There is no perfect. But it is way to protect the most liberty overall.

            1. Anarchy is ‘without leader’, not without *government*.

              1. Anarchy is ‘without leader’, not without *government*.

                Right. It comes from combining ‘an’ + ‘archon,’ with ‘an’ meaning ‘no’ and ‘archon’ meaning ‘chief.’

          3. Anarchism is just another delusion about the reality of human character. The only way it can be anything other than the chaos/oppression of, say, a refugee camp or the reign of terror is with some ‘NEW MAN’ and Year Zero stuff.

            Go that route and you’re just following Pol Pot and all the other Marxists who also rely on that brainwashing in order for the dictatorship of the proletariat to ultimately ‘wither away’ (Engel’s words) and turn into the stateless communist utopia.

            Pretend that that change of human character is not needed, and you just head down the route of getting frustrated, then angry, then nihilistic, then bomb-throwing.

            What an effing waste

          4. Um, I don’t think anyone in the world believes that “all that shit” won’t fail. That is no peculiarity of “individuals anarchism.” Every government in the worlds will someday collapse. That is a fact of life, just as every person will die, every family name go extinct, just as someday the sun will expand and consume the earth killing everything on it.

            Even Fukuyama has admitted that the ‘end of history’ idea was horse shit. But it is also a fact of life that every anarchy too will be replaced by a government. And usually a bad one. Because for anarchy to last, people have to be moral (and at least 1% of people are sociopaths to begin with, so right there you have a ice population of people who will dominate and murder and steal when it suits them no matter how nice things are) and things have to be prosperous enough that no individuals are ever driven by desperation or poverty or just greed to resort to force to get the things they want.

            Really this is just another variation of the prisoner’s dilemma.

      5. You’re thinking it can’t grow from zero as well as from some small positive number, I take it?

        Government is just a group of people who want power over others and have the means to take it. You’ll ban guns before you get rid of proto-governments.

  5. Aw, come on! Everyone knows that those slumlords have an infinite supply of money with which the could maintain their apartments, and the only reason they let them decay is that they’d rather swim in their money pool than spend a dime to help the poor! I mean, they’re rich! How could they own buildings and not be rich? They can afford it! They choose not to because they’re greedy capitalists! Down with capitalism! Have the government run everything! Power to the people!

    1. +1 Daredevil sub-plot

  6. Even Alberta’s NDP government is shying away from rent control. Incredibly.

    1. Canadian politicians seem to be able to learn from their mistakes. American politicians, not so much.

      1. No, American politicians do learn. Somehow, Canada usually avoids going full bore on stupid like your pols do. Ex the New Deal: Canada never implemented the same thing just a watered-down version of it.

        1. We have a saying south of the 49th parallel: go big or go home.

        2. -1 Pierre Trudeau

          1. Yeah fuck that motherfucker but Pearson his predecessor really laid the groundwork for his evil.

        3. -1 Rob Ford

  7. We are hitting an interesting period right now. Certain cities like NYC have continued to prosper and mostly thrive because they have inherent economic dynamism and industry (there are several in NYC, but finance is a big one). So they’ve been able to handle increasingly insane politicians without it tanking their economies. But I think we’re hitting a new level of insane that just completely and totally ignores even the slightest economic sense or reason. I’m seeing it Seattle too; the $15 minimum wage, the noises they’re making about trying to tax people with a certain income level, and so on. Seattle is in a real estate boom right now and they’re going to fuck it up royally, because that’s what parasites and megalomaniacal politicians do. And it looks like NYC is about to get a similar hit.

    Remember, the political parasites will always go too far. It is usually in their best interests to keep pushing, because that creates new norms and increases their power over time. But at a certain point, that’s it. But being what they are, they can’t see that line and will inevitably push past it. That’s what this is.

    1. Oh, they always go over the line. And it doesn’t work out. Look at Detroit, for example. And Chicago and Oakland are next on the list.

    2. And then they’ll blame the crash on the usual suspects: rich people, bankers, the Koch Brothers, Republicans etc, etc and nothing will be learned.

    3. Why do you always and only choose to live in socialist hell holes? Are you the chicken or the egg?

      1. Question for you: have you ever lived in a “socialist hell hole”? Because I get the sense from a lot of people here that they know jack and shit (not saying that’s the case with you, but it is with some) about these places that they seem to hate and fear so much. Like the hatred and fear of Europe. I see these reactions and realize there’s no way most of you have ever actually lived (visiting for a few days or even weeks doesn’t count) in these places. Because for everyday life, they’re just fine, sometimes great. One of the reasons I live in “socialist hell holes” is that I can get myself lost in them and stay completely off the government’s radar.

        I swear the caricature so many of you have in your heads about what day to day life is like in bigger cities or in Europe is so absurd it’s like it’s out of a low-budget 80’s action movie like Escape from New York.

        1. Sorry, but the thievery associated with these big cities can be utilized far more efficiently by the owners of the money that is otherwise stolen from them. The taxes they steal for a year can go to start a business, employ folks, or go towards savings for a building.

          1. Except my salary in NYC is like double what it would be, say, upstate. So in the end I feel I make out ahead, based on my current lifestyle.

            1. This is I imagine a redeeming idiosyncrasy of NYC. In California’s major cities you’re stuck with state property taxes and living expenses caused by state regulations, so you can’t just jump across a river and find yourself in Connecticut or New Jersey. Those states actually have to compete with each other for the people who live and work in the New York area. California however doesn’t have to compete with anyone over the residents of San Francisco. Unless you have the patience to commute all the way from Nevada.

              1. I don’t live in NJ or CT because that is not my lifestyle – also they don’t offer much of an advantage anyway. But you do make a good point in that those states are significantly cheaper than NYC proper – unlike CA which seems uniformly expensive everywhere.

        2. Can’t you take a fucking joke?

          If it helps, I grew up in Little Detroit – aka southeast Cook County – home of such free marketers as Gus Savage, Mel Reynolds, and Jesse Jackson Jr. When I was born the area was represented by Republicans, but thanks to gerrymandering we got re-districted so that Little Detroit could increase it’s footprint o’ blight.

          My current neighborhood, where I purchased a house, was repped by GOP until the last gerrymander, now I’m stuck with Jan Schakowsky. So I’ve gone from poor parasites to a rich parasite. Despite a few periods of respite, the tapeworms always find me. Getting away won’t be as easy this time.

        3. Yeah, West Berliners were just a bunch of judgmental cunts irrationally hating a place they never even lived. It’s not like politics has any impact on day to day quality of life. Besides, you’d have to be some kind of a backward bumpkin to judge a place you never even lived based on silly stereotypes. Just ask Walter Duranty!

    4. Oh for Chrissakes. NYC prospers because it is a statist parasite. Take the open market operations out of the NY Fed and end the monopoly of the primary-dealers – and NY is nothing but a very high-priced city. It is almost completely dependent on the vigorish/spread it gets for distributing centrally-planned money

  8. Over here on the other coast, we’ve got tools like Kshama Sawant trying to bring rent control to Seattle, probably to provide cover for the fact that the city council has repeatedly pushed a raft of policies that any idiot could tell you would have the chief effect of making living here more expensive.

    I mean, New York has had these policies for decades and is now a paradise of affordable rentals, right? I can hardly wait!


  10. Government price controls? Surely, that could only end well…

    1. It is for the Greater Good, Comrade.

  11. Future headline:


  12. And somehow, when they find that the cost of the non-regulated housing stock starts to increase dramatically, they’ll somehow rationalize this as being a “market failure”.

  13. “[…]Mr. de Blasio, a Democrat, praised the decision[…]”

    Yes, he is a (D).

  14. Rent control is pleasant in the short run, but harmful in the long run. Since politicians in general (and liberals even more so) tend to think only about the short run, naturally they like such idiocies. Besides, ideology calls for rent control, and for a liberal that trumps the actual interests of the citizenry.

  15. A city apparently filled with voters who don’t understand economics elected a mayor who clearly doesn’t understand economics, and now they’re about to make rents in NYC go even higher than they currently are. It’ll get worse before it gets better.

    I feel bad for the people who have to live there but don’t have the votes to get that moron out of office.

    1. Most of them understand fine. They’re in rent stabilized units (hardly anybody’s still in a rent controlled apt.) & enjoy saving $ by just staying there probably for life. The effect it has on unregulated rents they don’t care about.

      1. Unfortunately the consequences of these policies leads to exactly what they complain about–a large chunk of the market rented only to the fortunate, with landlords having no incentive to upgrade or repair, while the rest of the market is priced far beyond the average person’s ability to pay. Then NYC is made up of incredibly poor/cash-strapped people, a limited number of fortunate rent control beneficiaries (often who are not poor themselves but had the property sublet by a friend or relative), and super-rich. Anyone else has to endure a long commute or find another city to work in.

        A better idea would be to phase out the rent control, extreme zoning rules, and extreme rent regulations so as to encourage more development through the city (crowded as it seems, there’s a lot of underutilized space across the city) and enable supply to meet demand. NYC will always be more expensive than most places due simply to its draw, but it does not need to be nearly as inflated as it is.

  16. Hi Ron,

    What science job were you going to in NYC after you got your phD in science? Just curious.

    I thought problems related to emptying cities in the 1970s had more complicated reasons than actually having places with rents that normal people could actually afford, but I’m not an ex-Forbes writer so I’m probably missing something.

    1. as: Your nomme de blog gives some indication of your grasp of basic economics. My I suggest that you actually read the study to to which I linked?

      1. hi, thanks for the response. That’s not the question I asked. I was just asking if you were working as a scientist and if anyone called you a scientist before you started to write books telling rich people in the petrochemical industry what they wanted to hear.

        My path to actually being called a scientist was 5 painstaking years as an undergrad, another 3 in grad school, nights spent writing articles that would be peer-reviewed, and then a career in industry analyzing data. What was your path?

        1. hi, thanks for the response.

          If you’re going to trash a man’s character, have the goddamn courtesy to wipe the fucking smile off your face.

        2. The petrochemical industry? Wow, I see you realize just how wrong you are given how fast you changed the topic.

          Did Amsoc actually, actually learn something today? Is he implicitly admitting defeat upon realization that artificially driving down rent leads to a decline in the supply of rented units, since they are rendered less profitable? And that this concomitant decline in supply leads to a rise in demand and therefore price of units that are not effected by the rent control?

          I sense the pangs of knowledge in you’re brain; you are fighting them with all your might of course, but your resort to ad hominem/changing the topic is so egregious even you must be aware that subconsciously you are finally catching a glimpse of reality.

          Btw, what kind of data analysis did you do? Oh, and btw, putting things in MS excel tables is not data analysis; that’s what those of us who do data analysis call ‘clerical work.’ Just fyi.

        3. My path to actually being called a scientist was 5 painstaking years as an undergrad, another 3 in grad school, nights spent writing articles that would be peer-reviewed, and then a career in industry analyzing data.

          You’ve been called an awful lot of things, I suspect, but I doubt “scientist” was ever one of them. If you actually cared anything about science rather than appealing to made up credentials on the internet, where nobody knows you’re a dog, you could always fire up those analytical skills obtained during those 8 years of education, crunch the data on rent control, completely upend the entire field of economics, and collect your Nobel Prize.

  17. Doesn’t rent control serve as a check on housing prices?

    From the SFChronicle: “In San Francisco, unless you’re a complete moron, you buy rental property knowing, as the banker does, exactly what the current tenants are paying, and understanding, as the banker does, that the law won’t let me raise those rents by more than a modest amount each year. You’re making a profit at those rent levels; if not, you shouldn’t buy the place.”

    1. Right. And if a landlord wants to sell his property and can’t find anyone willing to buy because those modest profits are just too, well modest, then what happens to the property? If the profit margin is set ahead of time, what incentive is there to improve the property and make it more competitive with other rentals? What if those modest profits are too modest to incentivize new construction? What do people do when the “affordable” housing is full?

      These are all pretty basic economics. Like, not even college-level Econ 101. A basic high school econ class should cover this.

      1. “profits are just too, well modest, then what happens to the property”

        I would think the price of the house would go down. Isn’t that my point?

        1. How to turn a once-prosperous neighborhood into a slum, socialism-style.

    2. Doesn’t rent control serve as a check on housing prices?

      Why do housing prices need to be “checked”? Just build more fucking houses.

      1. It’s cute that you think that’s an option.

        1. Insofar as it isn’t an option (due to restrictive zoning rules, I guess?), price controls are not any kind of solution. There’s nothing wrong with high (or low, or anywhere in between) prices as long as they got there naturally. I don’t begrudge anyone their favored place to live, but if you can’t afford the rent/mortgage then what you want is irrelevant.

          1. I was being facetious. Huge chunks of NYC are off-limits to adding any housing (i.e. historical districts – which equate to rich people who don’t want to let any riff-raff in). As for the rest, it’s principals over principles.

  18. Google pay 97$ per hour my last pay check was $8500 working 1o hours a week online. My younger brother friend has been averaging 12k for months now and he works about 22 hours a week. I cant believe how easy it was once I tried it out.
    This is wha- I do…… ??????

  19. Joseph Strasburg, the president of the Rent Stabilization Association, which represents 25,000 landlords, called the rent freeze an “unconscionable, politically driven decision to carry out de Blasio’s campaign promise of two years ago.”

    FUck him and his clear agenda to continue to enrich 25,000 landlords.
    Seriously, were feeling bad for the Landlords?

    1. If the office of my landlord in Brooklyn is any indication, they’re not *all* tophatted fatcats swimming in gold coins.

    2. WTF is wrong with landlords? Just because you have or had a shitty landlord at some point in your life doesn’t mean the lot of them should be fucked by the government. You’re going to be “feeling bad” about the housing situation in a few years if this rent freeze stays in effect for a while, so you might as well recognize it now.

      1. BTW, NYC rent regulations are not as straightforward as you might imagine. For example, I am rent regulated but nevertheless I (or actually, my agent) mangaged to negotiate a so-called “preferred” rent. The actual “regulated” rent is way more than I pay and IMHO way more than anyone would pay. The net result is that the yearly increases they trumpet in the news are meaningless to me. My actual increases are way higher and I presume they will soon reach the so-called “regulated” rate which to be honest is basically market rate.

        The whole thing is – surprise, surprise – smoke and mirrors, and more a jobs program than anything else.

        1. And what do you know, here is a timely description of my situation.

          In approximately one-quarter of the 1.1 million rent stabilized apartments in the city, tenants don’t actually pay the legally permitted maximum rent, because it exceeds the market rate in the area. In these cases, landlords are permitted to offer a lower “preferential rent” that reflects market prices, though the legal rent is recorded alongside the preferential rent and is notionally increased every year. When fortunes in these neighborhoods change and they become desirable, rents naturally increase. When that happens, landlords are entitled to switch their tenants from the “preferential” to the “regulated” rent.

          My neighborhood is way not trendy. I chose well.

  20. Render unto New York what is New York’s.

    Sorry for my apathy on this.

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