California Is Clueless About Homelessness

Both Los Angeles and San Francisco struggle with restrictive land use regulations that raise the costs and completion times of housing projects. That same red tape is now hobbling projects aimed at helping alleviate homelessness.


"More money, more problems" might as well be the slogan for how San Francisco and Los Angeles approach homelessness.

Voters in both cities recently approved billions of dollars in new spending for supportive housing and services for homeless residents. Although the intentions are good and the resources are there, projects in both cities have suffered from major delays and cost overruns. Meanwhile, their homeless populations continue to grow.

San Francisco's "safe sleeping" open-air tent encampments were supposed to get homeless people out of crowded, dangerous indoor shelters while still providing them with meals, showers, security, and social services. The funding for these sites came from Proposition C, a 2018 ballot initiative that imposed the largest tax increase in San Francisco's history, raising $300 million for homelessness services.

The initiative won at the ballot box with 60 percent of the vote, even though most of the city's political leaders came out against it. They argued that the tax hike was excessive and that the plan for spending all that money was vague and lacked accountability.

Those warnings proved prescient. Under Proposition C, the city is spending around $61,000 annually on each "safe sleeping" occupant, or $5,083 per month. By comparison, the median monthly rent for an apartment in San Francisco is $2,913.

In contrast with Proposition C, Proposition HHH, which Los Angeles voters approved in 2016, had the enthusiastic backing of Mayor Eric Garcetti, who saw it as the cornerstone of his plan to turn back a rising tide of homelessness. The $1.2 billion bond initiative included a much clearer spending plan and required that the city controller release an annual audit of its progress. It was supposed to build 10,000 new units of affordable and supportive housing over 10 years.

The city controller's reports have shown that Los Angeles can spend homelessness dollars about as effectively as San Francisco. Five years after Proposition HHH's passage, the city had managed to build only about 700 of the 10,000 promised units. In a recent ruling, U.S. District Court Judge David Carter said the city's "inaction" on homelessness likely violates the 14th Amendment's Equal Protection Clause.

Both cities struggle with restrictive land use regulations that raise the costs and completion times of housing projects. Those rules have blocked private development and pushed rent prices up. The same red tape is now tripping up city officials who are trying to build shelter for the homeless.

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  1. Do you really think those people in the tents would / could buy a house?

    1. Piling onto that, do you think the neighborhood where Britches wants to stick whatever handout he’s thinking of, that current zoning is blocking; do you think that neighborhood wants a development crammed full of homeless, right next to them? A short, accurate answer would be, “No.”

      I’ve lived near a Salvation Army homeless shelter, back when cops were still enforcing some level of decorum on the homeless. It still sucked. Enjoy having a bum rummage through your stuff outside at 4 AM. Now, that rummaging comes with added literal piles of shit, needles, rage, and random vandalism because Crazy won’t take their meds, and ran out of dope or booze.

      Bring back the asylums.

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      2. Next time the asylums will probably be for the sane.

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          I doubt they’ll reuse the “sluggish schizophrenia” chestnut.

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        2. Yep. File bringing back asylums under “careful what you ask for.” They won’t stick actual crazy people in there, those people are the bulk of The Party’s base, after all.

    2. LA is home to about 400,000 illegal Mexican and Central American immigrants. Those immigrants arrive with an average of six years education, speak little or no English, and have to hide from the law.
      Look at those living on the streets. Almost none are Latino.
      The homeless problem is due to drug addiction, mental illness, and encouragement by lack of enforcement. Lack of funds is not the problem, otherwise those poor illegals would be among those living on sidewalks. For evidence of policing as a cause, look at the line separating Culver City from LA. Like the deforestation between Haiti and The Dominican Republic that can be seen from space, the homelessness stops right there.

      1. Negative, I blame the immigrants for the homelessness too.

      2. JohannesDinkle, you are exactly right.
        The nation has 20-30 million illegal aliens, yet hardly any of the “homeless” are from that group.
        Lack of housing isn’t the problem.

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  3. Actually, California is the ideal state. It represents the inevitable result of the Koch / Reason open borders policy, which imports millions of obedient Democratic voters and ultimately creates a single-party government.

    So if you’ve ever read reports of Californians defecating in the streets and wondered “Will that quirky and adorable behavior ever come to my state?” Well then you’re in luck — the answer is yes!


    1. You are a legit national treasure.

    2. You are right about open borders. Terrible and abusive policy.

  4. “Although the intentions are good….”

    Oh bull, Democrats always have bad intentions. Right guys?

    1. Right.

      And go fuck yourself, faggot.

      1. Sure Colonel Fitts. Whatever you say.

  5. Blue cities, red cities.
    Miami is down to less than 600 homeless.

    Of course, those mean old republicans just made the ‘homeless’ get into housing, and did not let them sleep and shit on public property.

  6. In fairness, California’s bums aren’t just local acommies. Because, of course, subsidizing something gets more of it, they’re also importing homeless from nearby states attracted to benefits.

    They sure as shit won’t STOP being broke in Cali, though. Likely to survive better than the locals when the big one finally hits.

    Also, just one of those beds is enough to pay the mortgage on two houses in a sane economy. I really think we need a mandatory cooldown period on voting after they escape Cali. Get to know the locals, and why their state is so much better off.

    1. They are designed to benefit the bureaucratic class.

      1. Exactly! This is an example of “If you aren’t paying for the product, you are the product.” Think how many focus groups and longitudinal studies can be funded with $300 million. They might have trouble getting zoning for the tent cities, but I bet the zoning for the new Commissariat of the Unresidenced campus got through OK.

    2. There’s more to it than that. Housing has gotten so expensive in California that they have middle class families that could afford housing in most other states that are homeless.

  7. Needs more government.

  8. One of the woke scolds at work was correcting her friend about the homeless around our town. “Homeless is insensitive, its more appropriate to call them “people without homes” or “housing challenged”. No joke. I LOLed when she said it couldnt help myself

    1. “Fuck off, Karen.”

      1. And she is no doubt among the “voters in both cities recently approved billions of dollars in new spending” and feels really fucking good about it.

        1. Meanwhile those billions get spent on “homeless advocates”, who do everything they can to stop programs that end homelessness.

    2. Here in the SF Bay Area, the preferred term amongst The Woke for the bums is “Unhoused”.

    3. My favorite is still when the advocacy groups called themselves “homeless advocates” until they started getting roasted for advocating homelessness.

      1. In woke places, like LA and SF, they don’t get roasted, and they know that their paychecks rely on homelessness continuing.

    4. And don’t dare say “Master Bedroom” when selling a house.
      That is, unless I can call the kids’ rooms “Slave Quarters.”

  9. Not all homelessness is the same. There are people who are temporarily without a place to stay. They’ll get back on their feet. Then there are those who enjoy the lifestyle. Can’t “fix” them. They like being homeless. Finally there are the mentally ill and addicts. They could use help, but will be guaranteed to fuck up whatever is given to them. So it sucks all around.

    1. Finally there are the mentally ill and addicts.


  10. In the most difficult, complicated moments, it is good to receive the warmth of those who love you because it ends up being a spectacular incentive to move forward.

  11. California isn’t clueless. There’s a method to their madness. It’s the standard Democrat playbook. Find a problem, make it worse or sensationalize it, call attention to it, demand funding to solve it, get the funding, use it to pay Democrats and their public sector Unions to administer the funding, paying for them with the funding. Then the Democrats and the Unions donate to the DNC who use that to keep the same Democrats in office. Repeat as many times as you can get away with it.

    1. Democrats baaaaaad!

      Every problem in the history of the world was caused by Democrats!

      They’re baaaaaaad!

      1. Go fuck yourself, faggot.

      2. ^YEP!!! Maybe not 100% but a good 90%….
        Why would anyone expect something good to come from the party-of-slavery? Do you also trust the gun toting criminal right after they robbed you blind?

        1. … Oh, wait; I get it… Democrat fans are the by-standing wall-flowers that cheered on the robbery crime and then scavenged for any left-overs. Great people I tell you.. Scavengers.. Just like Vultures.

          Doesn’t matter how they try to paint their Vulturistic tendencies…
          They cannot escape the fact that Gov-Guns =/= Wealth by any other means than armed theft.

        2. The differences between the two major teams are superficial. They’re just two sides of the same coin which I refuse to flip.

          1. That means one side is constantly face up, and one is down. We all know you’re a leftist shill so stop pretending. We all know which face is up for you.

            1. Go yell at the clouds, old man.

              1. Go whine for mommy, infantile shit.

          2. You voted for Biden. You know you did. We know you did. Stop pretending.

          3. It’s superficial that —
            1) A Democrat designed the Federal Reserve Act?
            2) A Democrat President/Congress ran 12-years of a great depression?
            3) Every-time Democrats gets the government Debt Piles like no other and many times collapses?
            4) Democrats pass more Regulation, Subsidizing than the other.
            5) Democrats Nazi-fied Healthcare
            6) Democrats Nazi-fied Housing
            7) Democrats Nazi-fied Land (FLPMA Act by [D])

            Granite; Republicans are not faultless by any means what-so-ever but anyone who watches legislation KNOWS the Democrats are the majority tyrants in every law they pitch and pass.

            1. I’m sure I could list off a bunch of Republican accomplishments that are equally vile. And it’s not like they’re working hard to repeal any of these Democrat abominations.

              There are no heroes here. Just assholes.

              1. And yet you didn’t.

                Why are you so dead set on defending the left and trying to make both sides equal when they aren’t even close to equal? This is why people call you a leftist.

                Find one GOP program even near the harm of the GND.

    2. Aside from all that, just imagine what would happen if they actually solved the problem: they wouldn’t be able to demonstrate their “compassion” and “empathy” on TV and social media anymore. How terrible!

      Can’t shoot that last possum!

    3. Another page in that playbook is to let people register to vote, without an address, which turns the “homeless” into a solid voting block, eager to sell their votes to the unscrupulous, who round them up on election day to get more LieCheatSteal party politicians elected.
      The definition of a vicious cycle.

  12. We really didn’t need the qualifier “about homelessness” in the headline did we?

  13. Under Proposition C, the city is spending around $61,000 annually on each “safe sleeping” occupant, or $5,083 per month. By comparison, the median monthly rent for an apartment in San Francisco is $2,913.

    But the median apartment in San Francisco doesn’t come with a government administrator making $130,000 a year and a pair of “homeless advocates” from a non-profit group receiving millions of dollars in grant money from the city, the state, and the feds, plus a city councilman’s cousin with a lucrative government contract to supply tents for the homeless encampment, so this is really not a fair comparison.

    1. Somewhere in there someone’s son is probably getting paid to paint.

  14. Anyone who has been in LA, Sacramento, or San Francisco in the last couple of years knows that the time for solutions is long gone. The gov can throw money at the problem all the live long day, which will certainly assist in making the problem worse (and enrich connected cronies), but there is nothing any government could do to solve CA’s homeless situation.

    All we can do is look to CA as an example of what happens when you don’t address serious issues while they’re still addressable. And you can bet it’s not getting any better where you live, either, so you better start getting on your local government right now before it gets out of hand.

    1. So, build a wall?

      1. I’ve been advocating for a wall between California and America for a very long time.

    2. A lot of the problem with homelessness is that it’s against the law to live like a poor person. Building codes and all that raise the cost of housing to a point where you need a pretty good income to live in a shit apartment in some of these places.

      When I watch old television shows and movies I sometimes remind myself that it’s totally illegal to have a simple dwelling. Watch anything black and white, and there’s no way the government would let someone live in a place like that. But the alternative is a tent.

      Talk about the road to hell being paved with good intentions. The people with good intentions want minimum housing standards, but instead they create homelessness. Just like the well-intentioned minimum wage proponents want people to have a living wage, but instead create unemployment for the unskilled.

      I believe the two issues go hand in hand.

      1. ^Well Said… Politicians are stupid but they sure love their gun force..
        “the road to hell being paved with good intentions” + Gov-Guns.

      2. What are some of the features, or lack of them, of dwellings that are now illegal to build?

        1. Just look at housing codes. Just like you can’t buy a car that doesn’t have airbags, antilock brakes and backup cameras that add to the cost, housing must follow guidelines that jack up the cost. Sure the guidelines are well intentioned. Codes make sure the house it totally modern, insulated, solar panels, wired for ethernet and everything, but that makes them expensive.

          1. Most of those regulations passed by democrats trading liberty for safety. You know the party you keep defending.

      3. I normally ignore you.
        This time I will take a bite.
        What about the literally thousands of illegals in L A and S F?
        None of them are homeless.
        And they earn pitifully low income and send most of that back home.
        How come they are not priced out of the housing market?
        Maybe they are not mentally ill drug addicts?
        Maybe they have a work ethic?

        1. I’ve always said that anyone who says “Lazy Mexican” never worked with a guy from Mexico.

          The ones I knew lived on beans, rice and beer, and lived in totally illegally crowded conditions. Ten guys in a two bedroom apartment. But it was better than Mexico. Not only that, but they saved up money so they could return home and live like kings for a month every year. Granted they were treated like shit for the other eleven, but it was worth it to them.

          They only did it by flouting the fire codes among other things.

          No way they could send money home and have a place to live while following the law.

          1. The homeless shelters in LA are only at around 20-30% occupancy. There’s plenty of room in there of the homeless we’re so inclined. There’s one reason, and one reason alone that they’re on the street and not in the shelter: enforced sobriety.

            1. Hm. I could see that. So what’s the solution? Wet (as opposed to dry) shelters?

          2. You think all Mexicans are poor. Wow. Pretty fucking racist.

    3. We could start by impeaching, firing, shooting – whatever needs to be done – the judges who said laws about loitering, vagrancy, panhandling, etc. were unconstitutional.
      Start enforcing those laws, even if it means building more jails, which probably would cost less than all the money that goes into “homeless” programs.
      Programs that encourage “homelessness”, by the way.
      In days gone by, there were very few, who rejected normal society, but they kept their “hobo camps” well out of town and away from the reach of local law enforcement.

  15. With this history of homeless policy spanning decades, people have to be intentionally and criminally stupid to continue in the same directions. What should have been obvious at the start, and now has been proven by tragic experimentation:
    1. People work because they want pay. People want pay so they can support themselves. People want to support themselves so they can eat, sleep, and relax with some comfort and security.
    2. Disrupting any part of that chain leads to disaster. Even a vague promise of minimal food and shelter reduces the incentives for work and self support.
    3. Increasing spending and other support for a thing will increase that thing, including homeless people.
    4. Institutionalizing a thing, like government and NGO agencies for the homeless, create enterprises that have their own incentives to grow, with increasing staff and expanding budgets, regardless of effectiveness.
    5. Politicizing a thing also provides incentives to maintain or expand that thing, as long as any political advantage is possible.

  16. the city is spending around $61,000 annually on each “safe sleeping” occupant, or $5,083 per month. By comparison, the median monthly rent for an apartment in San Francisco is $2,913.

    And that’s different from any of the thousands of Nazi Legislation how?? Any excuse to *steal* is the bottom line.

    1. It’s honestly a little impressive, actually, that the government can fuck up *so badly* as to make tents cost twice as much as *San Francisco* rents. This might even beat the “lost money running a whorehouse” story.

  17. Yes, the regulations are a pain for anyone building anything, but the issue regarding the bums goes far beyond that.
    Both SF and LA reward the bums with free food, free hotel rooms and (not sure it got stopped or not ) free booze and dope.
    And then the governments of those cities claim to be amazed the number of bums keeps growing.
    Anybody trying to build residential of any scale, or even trying to remodel an existing unit will applaud the reduction in regulations, but until the governments understand that rewarding bums means more bums, nothing will help the ‘bum crisis’

    1. Like I said above, there are three types of homeless people in my experience.

      People who, like me at the time, by circumstance are between places but will land on their feet because they’re productive human beings.

      People who, like many I knew, enjoy the lifestyle. Nothing to tie them down. No utility bill. No mailbox. They can just hop a whatever and go wherever. Tramps.

      Then there’s the mentally ill and the addicts. Some of them fall into the previous two categories, but many are stuck. They don’t want to be homeless, but they’re in a cycle that’s out of their control. Those are the ones who need help. But if you help them they’ll squander it. Which really sucks.

      1. Somehow you checked all three boxes, screetch.

  18. California Is Clueless About Homelessness


    1. I remember visiting Texas. San Antonio. And seeing the homeless. And thinking to myself, “Gosh, maybe Texas isn’t the paradise I’ve been told.”

      1. Yeah, of course! BOTH SIDES!!!, right Brandyshit?
        Don’t you ever get tired of apologizing for what a fuck up you are?

      2. Would note that San Antonio has had Demoratic mayors since 2001.

  19. California: No building here!

    Of course it wants new building. I see new home construction all around me. But none of it is affordable to the middle and lower classes. New multi-unit structures aren’t apartments, or even condominiums, but townhomes. The few new apartments (or leases) I see are for high end flats for trendy affluents.

    Side note: This is partly due to the boom/bust cycle of easy credit (ei. inflation). The new money injected into the economy gets tot he developers before it gets to the salaries, so they build fancy new buildings. In big cities you can measure it by new skyscrapers.

    So yes there’s a terrible homeless problem in the big urban areas in the state. It’s a side effect of the horrendous cost of housing. Middle class workers are struggling as well. It’s a big problem for teachers, a lot of home have to commute an hour to get to their prestigious zip code school districts to work. And it trickles down to the very poor, who often end up homeless because of it.

    Yes, a lot of homelessness is driven by substance abuse and mental issues. That doesn’t negate the fact that housing is literally unaffordable for many people in California’s larger urban/suburban areas. (Bay Area, LA metroplex, San Diego, not so much Fresno or Sacramento). A lot of the “new” homelessness we’re seeing is not the endemic “bums” we always have, but simply the working poor and very poor. A class both the Democrats and Republicans love to shit on.

    1. “But none of it is affordable to the middle and lower classes.”

      Yep, there are houses sitting on the market for YEARS since they are so over-priced no one can afford them!
      You’re not ‘well-informed’ about a lot of things, including this.
      “In August 2021, San Francisco home prices were up 1.7% compared to last year, selling for a median price of $1.5M. On average, homes in San Francisco sell after 22 days on the market compared to 27 days last year.”

      There is no “housing crisis”; there are a lot of people who wish to live where they cannot afford to.
      No, housing is not “over-priced”; every house in SF which came on the market this year has been sold.
      Yes, the over-regulation adds costs and should be drastically reduced, but that will do nothing with regard to the bums.

      And then we have:
      ” A class both the Democrats and Republicans love to shit on.”Brandyshit still trying to justify his ‘both-sides’ simplistic idiocy.
      Fuck off, asshole.

      1. Even when you fall off your “DIE LEFTISTS DIE” pony and appear to actually have something to say, it ends up being “DIE LEFTISTS DIE”.

        Can I get you some water? Maybe some prune juice?

        1. Fuck off, infantile shit.

          1. You sometimes show potential for having a conversation like a human being. But then you shake your stick at the sky and yell at Pelosi.

            1. Fuck off, infantile asshole. Go whine to mommy, not me.

    2. When someone who can afford it moves into an expensive place, their old place is empty and ready for new tenants.

  20. Giving a fool money to solve a problem is like using your bare hand to wipe your ass.

  21. “voters in both cities recently approved billions of dollars in new spending”

    “The initiative won at the ballot box with 60 percent of the vote, even though most of the city’s political leaders came out against it.”

    I think I’ve identified a root cause here; “The stupidity of the American voter.” Maybe if they did not regard the voting booth as an opportunity to signal their fucking virtue we’d have a few less boondoggles.

    1. Note the subtle but significant difference between “won at the ballot box” and “voters approved”.

      All ballots are created equal, but some are more equal than others.

      1. As in “it’s not who votes that counts, but who counts the votes?”

      2. Still imagining that California’s recall lost because of Democrats cheating? When there are literally twice as many registered Democrats as Republicans in the state? You go with that narrative if it lets you sleep at night.

        1. Plenty of the signers of the recall petition were LieCheatSteal party members.
          I talked to several loyal leftists who also wanted Newsolini kicked out.
          Yet the vote was almost exactly the same proportion of those registered to each party.
          I doubt it was because Republicans voted to keep him.
          More likely the counters created enough votes because they needed it to be a landslide.

  22. homelessness is not a “housing problem”, but a law enforcement problem. enforce the law and the problem is solved. these people belong in one of four places: jail, mental institution, drug recovery, or shelter. no one has the right to live on the streets. i would start by building a massive tent prison in the dessert and arrest everyone living on the streets — by default you go to jail.

  23. I live in California. It is NOT tough land use regulations or process that make the homeless housing issue a problem. I get that is the comfortable response from those that don’t get it. If every regulation was removed, the problem wouldn’t be solved and might not even improve. The problem is that there are too many that are unhousable. A cheaper apartment won’t guarantee that a homeless person gets it, it guarantees someone will move in from somewhere else and take it. That is the history of California. A very high percentage of homeless are have mental, social or addiction issues and can’t fit into the housing system. Add to that, homeless from other states aren’t sent back.

  24. The idea that homelessness is caused by a shortage of housing is ludicrous. Very few of these people have jobs, so even if rent was only $1 a month they couldn’t afford it.
    Build treatment centers to attack this problem.

  25. Both Los Angeles and San Francisco struggle with restrictive land use regulations that raise the costs and completion times of housing projects. That same red tape is now hobbling projects aimed at helping alleviate homelessness.

    It’s absurd to think that homelessness in SF or LA is caused by regulations. What causes homelessness in those cities is that it is tolerated and subsidized. That is, people can move to those cities and get free government services without holding jobs. And the more programs you institute to “help alleviate homelessness”, the more homeless you will attract.

    It’s the same with border control and amnesty: the more people you let in and let stay, the more will come.

  26. Homelessness hasn’t NOT been ended because of incompetence. It hasn’t been ended because of deliberate choices.

    The homelessness industrial complex perpetuates itself by allowing it to continue. They don’t want it to end.

    If they cared and wanted it to end, they’d have voted to make vagrancy a crime. They’d remove the bums off the streets, put them in facilities, and have the tents destroyed.

    Judges could drop charges on the mentally disabled who agreed to accept help. The rest, lock them away for a month, then give them $5 and an Uber to their real home.

    Repeat offenders will be deterred and it’ll end.

    1. Vagrancy was a crime, as was loitering and panhandling.
      Until some idiot judge decided that those people had a Constitutional right to be bums and struck down such laws.

  27. While at FreedomFest in July, I sat at a luncheon next to a documentarian who left L.A. for good to set up business in Austin TX. While there, he made a short doc about “Community First,” a collection of Tiny Homes outside of Austin. You can search online about its success, including a thorough BusinessInsider article.

    Those struggling with homelessness need to APPLY to get space there (thus showing their motivation to improve their lot in life) and must pay $300 a month in rent — or else they are kicked out. In addition to the 200-square foot spaces they can call home, they share communal restrooms and showers (akin to a KOA camp), have an outdoor movie theater, grooming salons and other services where they can be trained with certain crafts, and a 2-acre farm where they harvest and sell fresh produce.

    With $18 million in private financing, the developer of this concept is a Christian Missionary who also brings religion to those who need it. The community achieves what a government could never do (for instance, L.A. passed a $2.5 billion bond measure several years ago, and under Mayor Garcetti the situation has grown worse and worse and worse — not to mention how badly Gavin Newsom sent S.F. into a downward spiral with his ineptitude in solving the homeless problem.

    I just returned from my hometown, San Francisco, and was shocked at how normalized the tent-housing and poop all over the streets has become. it’s like the young kids just accept this as the way society is supposed to be — like Soylent Green or something. It made me so sad that citizens join the politicians in thinking that if we keep on throwing more and more and more money at “the problem” then it will be fixed. Get a clue, voters!

    Whenever I explain the story of Community-First, people say “that makes SO much sense.” Now Eric Garcetti is fleeing one tent city for an entire nation that is accustomed to such squalor. We’ve established a Homeless-Industrial Complex that continues to feed off government money, while California grows more and more bifurcated. Just think: $2.5 billion versus $18 million, where the latter gets proven results to rehabilitate those in need, while the other just shows the wasteful process that will be the legacy of failed leaders such as Garcetti and Newsom. Why can’t anybody see what’s so obvious in presenting a sound solution?

  28. Firstly, most homeless people are there because of repeated stupid decision making be it drugs, moving to an expensive area with no means or plan to support themselves, etc. Most of the rest are mentally ill. Throwing money at them will fix nothing but it will make the drug dealers richer. Secondly, government is the absolutely least efficient way to provide a good or service. All this money might as well be flushed down the toilet.

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