U.S. Congressional representative Katie Porter (D-California) doesn’t seem to think that children need a father, and doesn’t seem to care about the density restrictions and other anti-development laws that increase the cost of housing in California

U.S. Congressional representative Katie Porter (D-California) recently talked about “Patricia,” one of her “constituents” who lives in Irvine, California.

Here’s a video of part of Porter’s statement, from the Washington Post channel at YouTube:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0QKOLydDfNg

Since Porter said she looked up the salary of Patricia’s job at monster.com, I am guessing that “Patricia” is fictional. Nevertheless, I will go along with this, and offer my comments and analysis.

Patricia works as a bank teller at JPMorgan Chase, and earns $16.50 per hour, which works out to $35,070 per year. Patricia has a six-year old daughter, and the two of them live together in a one-bedroom apartment in Irvine, California. After taxes, Patricia takes home $29,100 per year, which is $2,425 per month.

Porter provided this image of Patricia’s monthly expenses:

These are Patricia’s monthly expenses:

$1,600 rent

$100 utilities

$250 on a 2008 car

$150 gas

$402 USDA “low cost” food for one adult and one child

$40 phone

$450 after school childcare

This leaves Patricia with a monthly budget deficit of $567.

Porter blames this budget deficit on JPMorgan Chase.

Now I’d like to offer my own commentary and opinion on this, in three different categories.

First of all, Porter makes no mention whatsoever of Patricia’s child’s father.

If Patricia was actually married, then her husband could work from home and take care of their child after school, and there would be no need to spend $450 per month on after school child care. Also, her husband’s income from working at home would make it easier to pay for their other expenses.

This refusal by Porter to even so much as mention Patricia’s child’s father is typical of liberals when they talk about single mothers who are struggling to raise their children. I have previously written about liberals’ refusal to mention the fathers of these children here, here, here, here, and here.

Secondly, Porter never mentions how density restrictions and other anti-development laws cause the price of housing in California to be substantially higher than it would otherwise be.

But I will mention it.

Here is a link to an article that was published by the Atlantic in 2007.

When a developer builds housing, there are three separate and distinct costs: the cost of land, the cost of construction, and the cost of getting a building permit (which the article refers to as the “right to build”).

Irvine is in the Los Angeles metropolitan area. According to the Atlantic article, using data from 1999, getting permission for the “right to build” added $303,000 to the cost of a house in Los Angeles in 1999.

Here’s part of the relevant text from the article:

In a 2003 article, Glaeser and Gyourko calculated the two different land values for 26 cities (using data from 1999). They found wide disparities. In Los Angeles, an extra quarter acre cost about $28,000 – the pure price of land. But the cost of empty land isn’t the whole story, or even most of it. A quarter- acre lot minus the cost of the house came out to about $331,000—nearly 12 times as much as the extra quarter acre. The difference between the first and second prices, around $303,000, was what L.A. home buyers paid for local land-use controls in bureaucratic delays, density restrictions, fees, political contributions. That’s the cost of the right to build.

And that right costs much less in Dallas. There, adding an extra quarter acre ran about $2,300—raw land really is much cheaper—and a quarter acre minus the cost of construction was about $59,000. The right to build was nearly a quarter million dollars less than in L.A. Hence the huge difference in housing prices. Land is indeed more expensive in superstar cities. But getting permission to build is way, way more expensive. These cities, says Gyourko, “just control the heck out of land use.”

The same article also includes this chart:

And please remember, this cost for the “right to build” is completely separate from the cost of the land, and the cost of construction.

The cost for the “right to build” is determined entirely, 100% by zoning laws, density restrictions, and other local government policies.

Here’s another example of how hard it is to get a building permit in California:

http://www.aei.org/publication/texas-great-american-job-machine-solely-responsible-1m-net-us-job-increase-since-2007/

January 23, 2015

… there were more permits for single-family homes issued last year through November in just one Texas city – Houston (34,566) – than in the entire state of California (34,035) over the same period.

Let’s put this into perspective.

Houston is 628 square miles.

California is 163,696 square miles.

So even though California is 260 times as big as Houston, Houston actually issued more new building permits for single family homes in 2014 than did the entire state of California.

Just think about that for a minute.

Those numbers show just how incredibly, ridiculously hard California makes it to build new housing.

Anyone who has ever bought or sold anything at eBay understands that, all else being equal, the bigger the supply of something, the lower price, and the lower the supply, the higher the price.

By making it so difficult to get a building permit in California, the government is causing housing to be far, far more expensive than it would otherwise be.

Here is a great article by Thomas Sowell about how the politicians in California have waged war against the construction of new housing.

This video also explains California’s war against the construction of new housing. And please note that it is progressives, social justice warriors, and other left wing activists who are the ones that are most opposed to building this new housing:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ExgxwKnH8y4

California is waging a very strong, major war against the constriction of new housing.

But Porter never mentions any of this.

Third, being a bank teller is an entry level job. It doesn’t require any education beyond high school.

If Patricia wanted to earn more money, she could have gone to college or trade school before having a child.

But Porter never mentions this, either.

April 15, 2019. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Economics. 2 comments.

Hypocrite Bernie Sanders changes his tune on “millionaires and billionaires” after the media reports that he is one of them

I want to start out by saying that I think it’s absolutely wonderful that Bernie Sanders became a millionaire by selling books to customers who wanted to buy them.

I have no problem with the fact that Sanders is a millionaire.

What I do have a problem with is his hypocrisy.

On many, many occasions, Sanders has criticized “millionaires and billionaires.”

This is a link to a video on C-SPAN’s website, which shows Sanders making such a statement. Here are his exact words: (skip to 0:33)

“There is something profoundly wrong, when in recent years, we have seen a proliferation of millionaires and billionaires, at the same time as millions of Americans are working longer hours for lower wages, and we have shamefully the highest rate of childhood poverty of any major country.”

However, now that the media has reported that Sanders himself is a millionaire, he is saying something very different. The New York Times just quoted Sanders as saying:

“I wrote a best-selling book… If you write a best-selling book, you can be a millionaire, too.”

I agree 100% with Sanders’ statement.

If I can just add three more zeros to my own book sales figures, I, too, will become a millionaire.

Sanders’ association of the existence of “millionaires and billionaires” to the fact that there are children living in poverty is not accurate. According to the book The Millionaire Next Door, 80% of U.S. millionaires are first generation rich. They earned that money legally and honestly, by providing labor, goods, and services that people were willing to pay for. That makes everyone better off. It does not cause anyone to live in poverty.

The real reason there are so many children living in poverty in the U.S. has nothing to do with the fact that there are “millionaires and billionaires.” Instead, the high rate of childhood poverty can be attributed almost entirely to the irresponsible behavior of their parents.

Let’s consider two groups of people in the U.S. The first group has a poverty rate of 2%. The second group has a poverty rate of 76%.

The first group consists of people who followed all three of these steps:

1) Finish high school.

2) Get a full-time job.

3) Wait until age 21 and get married before having children.

The second group consists of people who followed zero of those three steps.

Among people who follow all three of these steps, the poverty rate is 2%.

Among people who follow zero of these steps, the poverty rate is 76%.

(My source for that information is this article, which refers to this PDF, and the relevant data is on page 15 of the PDF. The study uses data from the U.S. Census Bureau.)

Wikipedia has published the following chart, which shows the massive increase in the rate of out-of-wedlock births that has taken place in the U.S. since the 1960s. Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Nonmarital_Birth_Rates_in_the_United_States,_1940-2014.png

According to that chart, since 1960, the percentage of babies born out-of-wedlock in the U.S. has skyrocketed from 5% to 40%.

In the 1960s, the Democrats launched their “War on Poverty,” whereby the government started paying women to have babies out-of-wedlock.

And as anyone who understands economics will tell you, whatever you subsidize, you get more of.

In this video, a happily married woman explains how a government social worker told her that she should get divorced in order to collect more benefits:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oG6JqmdIubA

The liberals who complain about childhood poverty almost never blame it on the high out-of-wedlock birth rate.

Time and time and time and time again, the media publishes articles about childhood poverty, without even mentioning the fathers of these children.

April 10, 2019. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Bernie Sanders, Economics. 1 comment.

Wealthy ‘NIMBY’ libs in Pelosi’s SF district raise $60G to fight center for city’s homeless

https://www.foxnews.com/politics/san-franciscos-wealthy-in-pelosis-district-raise-60g-to-oppose-homeless-shelter-as-city-struggles-with-homelessness

Wealthy ‘NIMBY’ libs in Pelosi’s SF district raise $60G to fight center for city’s homeless

March 29, 2019

Rich San Francisco residents in House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s congressional district have collected more than $60,000 after starting an online crowdsourcing campaign to wage a legal challenge against a proposed center for the city’s homeless.

The campaign, called “Safe Embarcadero for All,” was launched March 20 after San Francisco Mayor London Breed proposed a 200-bed homeless Navigation Center in the city’s most desirable location, the Embarcadero along the coast of San Francisco Bay, earlier this month.

“The planned location for Mayor Breed’s #megashelter is home to thousands of families, visited by millions of tourists and at the center of some of San Francisco’s most iconic events – including the San Francisco Marathon, San Francisco Giants stadium and on one of the busiest bicyclist paths in the city,” reads the site posted by the group opposing the construction.

The campaign shamelessly raised over $60,000 and is on track to reach the desired $100,000 goal, with the money used to pay attorney Andrew Zacks, who often represents property owners, to help the dissatisfied “Not In My Backyard” residents in the neighborhood.

More than 130 people have chipped in, although many did so anonymously. The biggest donation came from an unknown resident who gave $10,000 to the cause.

A Fox News review of records found that multiple individuals – bank executives, professors and authors – who donated to the GoFundMe page have also contributed to Democratic political groups, including thousands of dollars to the Democratic National Committee, MoveOn, Hillary Clinton’s campaign, and other left-leaning organizations.

One of the donors, Jerome Dodson, who has since scrubbed his $1,000 contribution to the campaign, is reportedly a chairman of a “responsible investment fund” that seeks to make “a positive impact on society,” according to the Washington Free Beacon. The investment fund executive donated to Democratic candidates and groups over the years, including Pelosi and Hillary Clinton.

Fox News reached out to Pelosi’s office, asking whether she offered her support for the project designed to combat homeless in her own district.

A competing GoFundMe campaign was started in support of the project for the homeless in the city, attracting a $5,000 donation from GoFundMe itself. The effort so far has garnered nearly $33,000 in donations – surpassing a set goal of $30,000.

San Francisco’s mayor, meanwhile, slammed the group opposing the construction in a statement to the San Francisco Chronicle.

“People want us to address the challenges on our streets and help our unsheltered residents into housing, and I am committed to doing the hard work to make that happen,” Breed said.

“But it’s incredibly frustrating and disappointing,” she added, “that as soon as we put forward a solution to build a new shelter, people begin to threaten legal action.”

March 29, 2019. Tags: , , , , , , , . Politics. Leave a comment.

Elizabeth Warren doesn’t seem to know that France’s wealth tax caused a REDUCTION in tax revenues

This is what the Washington Post wrote about France’s wealth tax:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/07/15/AR2006071501010.html

Old Money, New Money Flee France and Its Wealth Tax

July 16, 2006

Eric Pinchet, author of a French tax guide, estimates the wealth tax earns the government about $2.6 billion a year but has cost the country more than $125 billion in capital flight since 1998.

Anyone who looks at the above numbers would know that all of that capital flight means less income tax, less capital gains tax, less sales tax, less social security tax, and less of many other taxes too. Whatever tax revenue France gets from its wealth tax is more than dwarfed by the reductions in other taxes.

And Warren’s proposed wealth tax rate is actually higher than France’s, so its potential for harm is actually bigger as well.

That doesn’t sound like a good idea for anyone who wants to increase the amount of tax revenue that gets collected by the government.

On the other hand, if Warren’s real goal is to appeal to Democratic primary voters who feel envy and jealousy, and who don’t understand math or the concept of capital flight, then her proposal is a brilliant strategy. Her horrible proposal could very well get her elected President in 2020.

January 28, 2019. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Economics. Leave a comment.

Liberal Rebecca Watson explains why it’s OK that rich kids will get to see new episodes of Sesame Street nine months before poor kids

In this video, liberal Rebecca Watson praises HBO for funding new episodes of Sesame Street, which it will let PBS air for free after nine months. The number of new episodes produced per year is also getting bigger because of this deal with HBO.

I agree with Ms. Watson that this is a good idea. She admits that rich kids will get to see the new episodes nine months earlier than poor kids, but also says that this is not a problem. I praise her for seeing this as a win-win situation instead of as a class-warfare type thing. I wish more liberals shared her way of thinking.

I myself grew up watching Sesame Street, Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood, The Electric Company, 3-2-1 Contact, and other educational shows on PBS, and I am definitely a better person for having done so. Perhaps this makes me a “bad” libertarian, but I can’t think of any practical reason to oppose government funded public television. In theory, libertarians such as myself are supposed to be against it. But I believe that in this particular case, real world evidence proves that the theory is wrong. The financial cost of public television, as a percentage of the federal budget, has always been trivial, and the educational benefits of public television over the decades have been enormous. I am glad that I, as well as millions of other people, watched it when we were children, and if that required the use of taxpayers’ money, then so be it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_6MS3QDnOI

 

August 27, 2015. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Education, Politics, Television. 2 comments.

Idiotic Hillary Clinton supporters are shocked to find out that she’s rich

I’m just paraphrasing, so these aren’t actual quotes from the video. But they are an overall summary:

“Which presidential candidates own these four mansions?”

“Well, they’re all really big and expensive looking, so it must be Republicans. Rubio? Carson? Trump, I think, because he’s rich.”

“Actually, all four are owned by Hillary Clinton.”

“Really? How can that be possible? Hillary isn’t rich!”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3L5hn5B8TYI

And that reminds me of this scene from the movie Casablanca:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SjbPi00k_ME

July 4, 2015. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , . Politics. 3 comments.