New York City

Paul Krugman Blames Over-Regulation for Urban Unaffordability

Progressive economist gets supply-and-demand, to a point.

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In an op-ed published in yesterday's New York Times,

What? Me Over-Regulate?
Wikipedia

Nobel laureate, economics professor and "Conscience of a Liberal" blogger Paul Krugman took aim at what he believes is the culprit for the US' "shortage of urban dwellings" and the un-affordability of existing housing inventory.

In Krugman's view, "Our big cities, even New York, could comfortably hold quite a few more families than they do. The reason they don't is that rules and regulations block construction." He adds that increasing urban density could actually have environmental benefits:

Furthermore, within metropolitan areas, restrictions on new housing push workers away from the center, forcing them to engage in longer commutes and creating more traffic congestion.

Though long an advocate of regulation and central planning in just about every economic sphere, Krugman has railed against rent control and land-use restrictions as drivers of inequality and artificially-inflated prices for years. In late 2015 he argued, "this is an issue on which you don't have to be a conservative to believe that we have too much regulation."

Much like Vox's Matt Yglesias, who also vocally opposes the over-regulation of the urban housing market, Krugman fits into a group which City Journal's Aaron Renn dubbed "Libertarians of Convenience," supporters of the free market "but only for things they like or want to do":

While they've assailed density limits, height restrictions, minimum-unit sizes, and other housing regulations, for example, they have celebrated New York's access-to-buildings law, which mandates that commercial buildings allow bicycles on freight elevators. Similarly, while car parking minimums have drawn fire, sites like Greater Greater Washington have simultaneously embraced bicycle parking minimums in the District of Columbia. When Los Angeles mandated reflective roofing materials, CityLab described the regulation approvingly as banning "heat-sucking" roofs. And progressives' call for food freedom abruptly reverses itself when trans fats, genetically modified foods, or large sugary drinks are in question—they think all should be banned or strictly regulated.

Krugman's support of increasing the housing supply comes with a pretty important caveat: his backing of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's plan to "selectively loosen rules on density, height, and parking as long as developers include affordable and senior housing."

But Krugman doesn't connect how requirements to build "affordable housing" in concurrence with new development inherently involves the creation of yet another layer of red tape. This, in conjunction with calls to "landmark" more and more businesses and buildings, makes finding space to develop the longed-for increased housing supply a much more difficult prospect.

NEXT: Millionaires Are Fleeing Paris, Athens, and … Chicago

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  1. Surprisingly, the broken clock is right.

    1. A broken clock with a punchable face.

      1. He is a weasely looking piece of shit, isn’t he?

    2. I don’t think he is right reliably enough for the broken clock analogy to work. Broken clocks are right in predictable and unsurprising ways.

      1. And there right twice a day. Krugman’s more like a broken Calendar.

        1. A wrong year leap year calendar which is right once every 28 years or something.

      2. Broken clocks are right in predictable and unsurprising ways.

        “Infinite monkeys on infinite typewriters” it is, then.

        1. With infinite punchable faces.

    3. No, sadly not. Krugman ordinarily says that it is 4pm when it is 11am–quite wrong. This time, he merely said that it was (1 + 3i)pm.

      1. +1 Imaginary Clock

  2. That picture makes Krug Man look like he’s leaving a Sigma Pi kegger after getting to third base with a blackout-drunk KKG pledge. Just out of frame, there is vomit on his sweater.

    1. It was taken by cobrasnake.

      1. Like Krug Man ever gets invited to THAT kind of party.

        1. Isn’t that him in the Vanilla Milkshake photo?

        2. We should get Hack Man to battle Krug Man and imprison him in the Phantom Zone. Like he did to stop Christopher Reeve.

    2. Either that, or he just got turned down at the playground. Because he was all out of babysitter coupons.

      1. Haha, is that a reference to his anecdote in his book about the baby sitting collective?

  3. Somewhere inside of Paul Krugman, there is an economist. As part of his morning routine, Krugman beats that economist into submission. Sometimes, though, the beating doesn’t fully take.

    1. No, his wife Robin Wells beats the economist out of him.

      1. I thought pegging was supposed to be pleasurable?

    2. Nah, I think they’re separate personalities.

    3. Something, something, masturbation euphemism.

  4. And progressives’ call for food freedom abruptly reverses itself when trans fats, genetically modified foods, or large sugary drinks are in question?they think all should be banned or strictly regulated.

    Could this be the stress cracks that show progressives have gone too far?

    1. No. THAT stress crack is to be found at the bottom of a smoldering crater.

      1. it appears when they bend over…

    2. “Food freedom”? (Cringes)

    3. Like the religious zealous on the right, the progressives weigh heavily on the left. They need each other for the power base but that doesn’t mean they agree with, or even like, each other.

      Keynesian economics is actually a thing, although the original idea behind that school isn’t where we seem to be today in terms of policy (we’re far beyond it, if you ask me anyway). These days it’s more like magic than even Keynesian ideals.

  5. Tomorrow’s Krugman rant will be about how hard it is to find totes vintage sweaters in Goodwill’s since all the scene kids have started hunting them.

    1. No way, he looks fratty as hell. I had to check twice to make sure his collar wasn’t popped and he wasn’t wearing a backwards baseball cap. Dude doesn’t clothes-shop anywhere but Abercrombie, broheim.

      1. +1 brogressive

        1. I hate you for that.

        2. *stands to begin prolonged applause*

          1. *holds red solo cup with PBR in teeth to free hands for clapping*

      2. Last season ‘crombie is vintage, brah.

  6. Krugman also published this wonderful piece over the weekend =

    Sanders campaign needs to stop feeding the right-wing disinformation machine. Engaging in innuendo suggesting, without evidence, that Clinton is corrupt is, at this point, basically campaigning on behalf of the RNC.

    IOW, daring to acknowledge the slimy, stinking trail of of “ick” that follows Hillary is ANTI-TEAM, and tantamount to working for the “other side”.

    1. The FBI hasn’t contacted Hillary yet. Fact: She’s honest.

      1. “The FBI hasn’t contacted Hillary yet. Fact: She’s honest.”

        To be followed with: “The FBI hasn’t indicted Hillary yet. Fact: She’s honest.”

        To be followed with: “The Court hasn’t convicted Hillary yet. Fact: She’s honest.”

        To be followed with: “Fact: Orange is the new Black”

        1. Our first orange President.

          1. Trump or Clinton?

          2. Maybe Trump’s running mate will be Boehner. A full orange ticket.

            1. Halloween is one of the most popular holidays. Trumpolantern.

    2. I think Krugman is shooting for a slot in the Clinton administration.

      1. Chairman of the Fed.

        1. Don’t even joke about that shit.

      2. The words “slot” and “Clinton” should never be in the same sentence.

        Thank you. That is all.

      3. Not a position in which we want to see a former Enron adviser!

    3. I wonder if this is to be the new talking point. Sargon of Akkad had a blast with Valenti’s “Hilary is fundamentally honest” and Greenwalds “Objective journalism is morally wrong, leads to Trump” articles on his latest video.

    4. Whether or not she’s corrupt, there is lots of evidence that she is a liar and a criminal. I guess that’s OK.

      1. Isn’t being a criminal and a liar required to be corrupt?

        1. It’s all a rich tapestry.

        2. At this point, what difference does it make?

        3. Either way, it’s clear that the evil in her good is far stronger than the good in her evil.

          1. Is that like one putting thier chocolate in another’s peanut butter?

            1. What kind of euphemism is that? Oh, never mind, I really don’t want to know.

      2. she’s also a douche

      3. Well, the best you can hope for in a politician is that their corruption aligns with the interest of the people. Hillary is in bed with Wall St, insurance companies, and banks, and while that is certainly “corrupt”, it’s still better than Sanders.

    5. IOW, daring to acknowledge the slimy, stinking trail of of “ick” that follows Hillary is ANTI-TEAM, and tantamount to working for the “other side”.

      What’s funny is, AFAIK, no one is talking at all about the same cleaving of the Democratic Party. Like Sanders will continue to win popularity poles and primaries right up to the convention and then, magically, nothing will be contested and they will all love Hillary.

      1. popularity polls

        1. no, poles was correct actually…

      2. Yes, everything is about TRUMP THE GREAT DESTROYER… and zero attention seems to be paid to the fact that the Dems have their own ideological schism going on between the dreamboat-communist, and a crusty felon who the press Dare Not Speak Of

        1. Since WA is hopelessly in full retard commie mode, I’m writing in Cthulhu. Who is strangely less evil then Cankles. And also has a superior fiscal plan.

          1. But “Cthulhu 2016 – Vote for the Lesser Evil” just doesn’t have the same ring as “Cthulhu 2012 – Why vote for the Lesser Evil?”

            1. Good point. Also, a Cthulhu presidency would a deterrent to our enemies. Maybe the Dread One can also be convinced to wipe out the hippie progtards……

              http://www.shadamachaeon.com/w…..llu_14.png

  7. Contra Krugman: The Podcast that Refutes Krugman Every Week

    1. I think “refuting Krugman” is taking him way too serious. Krugman deserves to be laughed at and made fun of.

  8. I saw that column, and I plan to show it to all of the people I know who take it as teaching necessary for salvation that the problem of affordable housing has nothing to do with restrictions on development.

    1. I’m a little curious as to whether his commenters think Krugman is a traitor to “the cause” in this instance or whether they fawn over his words so much they accept anything he says. I’m not so curious as to go look, though.

  9. “Libertarians of Convenience,” supporters of the free market “but only for things they like or want to do”:

    “Legalize pot” followed by “ban smokeless tobacco.”

    1. Pot is from the earth! Smokeless tobacco is from the kochtopus!

      1. I love to scare the progtarded by loudly announcing “Kochtopus gonna git ya!”.

    2. I actually know people who want increased regulation for everything except yoga pants.

      1. God bless who ever convinced women that yoga pants are appropriate to wear out on the street. They might as well be nekid.

        1. Better than nekkid, actually. The compression really . . . helps.

          1. Yes. It’s hard not to walk into light posts and parking meters. Sigh, first world problems.

  10. Much like Vox’s Matt Yglesias, who also vocally opposes the over-regulation of the urban housing market, Krugman fits into a group which City Journal’s Aaron Renn dubbed “Libertarians of Convenience,” supporters of the free market “but only for things they like or want to do”:

    Probably because Yglesias and Krugtron directly experience the bullshit results of that over-regulation. They probably also wouldn’t like to see their own profession regulated, but of course they’re content to regulate the bejesus out of everyone else. This is a transparent case of “Liberty and property rights for me, but not for thee.”

    1. In the pass, Yglesias has also advocated for the reduction and elimination of occupational licensing and regulation. And gotten beaten up for it by his blog commenters.

      1. do we need a reason to beat him up or can we just do it for fun?

  11. Trump is talking about De-Regulation. Krugersad is also talking about De-Regulation.
    Just put 2 and 2 together. “Old Broken Window” is just trying to stay relevant.

  12. I hear Krugman and instantly I think ‘lying lefty shill’.

    That is all.

    1. Isn’t “lying lefty shill” redundant?

      1. Y’all got that right!

        I read that when he writes for academia (where people double-check his shit and call him for his lies), he admits that the welfare state, un-employment compensation, etc, leads to more people goofing off. When he writes editorials, though, he totally lies about the exact same thing!

      2. I view his kind as soulless trash.

        1. that’s being really unkind to trash everywhere…

          1. True……..he makes shit and garbage look appealing.

  13. He is still supporting low income housing? That is one of the biggest problems with urban markets. In most cities it is roughly a 20%-25% tax on buyers of new units, which is a huge tax for anyone who doesn’t qualify as poor. This pushes the price curve into luxury unit territory, which pushes out the middle class. It probably lowers long run supplies as well, because of the shift in the price curve, which raises long run prices further.

    1. It lowers supplies also because if developers are forced to charge more for units, they are going to try to make them bigger and more luxurious, because they are still competing with living outside the city.

  14. Furthermore, within metropolitan areas, restrictions on new housing push workers away from the center, forcing them to engage in longer commutes and creating more traffic congestion.

    Shit, this has been blindingly obvious for decades. Even in town: some of the hottest real estate in Manhattan is low-rise and smack in the middle of everything (Greenwich Village), while tall residential towers have nowhere to go but the edges.

  15. Its kinda getting annoying how these people keep insisting that everyone get crammed into the city – but its understandable.

    Its all about control.

    Push people into the cities and its easy to keep an eye on them. Push mass transit and restrict personal vehicles and its easy to control large-scale movements. Its easy to justify ever more regulation ‘because so many of us live so close together that we need *this* to help us get along’.

    1. I would posit that it is easier to be invisible in a big city than in a rural area.

    2. Push for an all digital currency, to exert further control over people.

      When the technology is all the way there, I bet we see a big push for mandatory self-driving cars. Since the efficiency gains with self-driving cars won’t be seen until you get all the human drivers off the road they’ll actually be able to point to evidence that somethings would get better, and those of us arguing for maximum freedom of movement will be met with the “well if you don’t have anything to hide, why do you care if you have to ride in a self-driving car that keeps logs of all your travel?” spiel.

  16. A blind hog just found an acorn.

  17. Paul Krugman Blames Over-Regulation for Urban Unaffordability

    Hell freezes over!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. No need to pack gloves and hats for hell:

      Paul Krugman Blames Over-Regulation for Urban Unaffordability and demands more regulation to fix it

      See, for Krugman, the solution to anything, even too much regulation, is always more regulation!

      1. How stupid of us!

        We just need to regulate the regulations to make them more regular!

        How obvious!

  18. He is actually honest about this one issue because he has to deal with the damn traffic. The other stupid liberal shit only fucks up other people’s lives not his.

  19. Holy shit, he actually got something right for once?

    -jcr

    1. No, not really. He babbles about “rent control”, but then demands “affordable housing units”.

  20. Until that second or third-last paragraph, I briefly held out hope Krugnuts had somehow become less retarded.
    I’m related to a developer/builder. The No. 1 reason for lack of affordable housing is govt regulation. Nothing comes even close.

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  22. Krugman’s support of increasing the housing supply comes with a pretty important caveat: his backing of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s plan to “selectively loosen rules on density, height, and parking as long as developers include affordable and senior housing.”

    Who does he think is going to pay for this? Required 10% “affordable housing” and everybody else’s housing prices go up to pay for it. And the “affordable housing” itself usually just goes to people who are able to game the system anyway.

    Apparently, Krugman heard somewhere from a colleague that rent control is bad, but he still doesn’t understand why.

  23. Wow this makes twice in a year I have agreed with this guy. LOL

  24. I mean, this is only surprising or seemingly out of character if you forget that Krugman is a Progressive. Progressivism’s core principle is that the use of state power to steer society towards a given ideal is not only appropriate but a moral imperative. Everything serves that end. So it makes perfect sense that you’d lift regulations in one sphere and introduce them in another if your goal is to drive behavior in a certain direction. Saying that a Progressive is hypocritical for being inconsistent about regulation is like saying a sheep dog is inconsistent for only biting the sheep sometimes.

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