Empty Homes Outnumber The Homeless 6 To 1, So Why Not Give Them Homes?

“Homes are built for people to live in,” said one activist, so why are there millions of homeless people and millions more empty homes?
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    MINNEAPOLIS — Millions of Americans experience homelessness every year, and yet they’re outnumbered by vacant homes and government-owned buildings. A growing number of activists are calling for these empty spaces to be filled with the humans living on America’s streets.

    According to the National Alliance to End Homelessness, almost 600,000 people experience homelessness on any given night in the United States as of January 2014. About 15 percent of those people are the “chronically homeless,” while the rest may lose their homes temporarily but find some form of recovery that keeps them off the streets on a long-term basis.

    Writing for Amnesty International in 2011, Tanuka Loha, then-director of Amnesty’s Demand Dignity program, put the numbers into a larger, annual perspective, and compared them to the shocking number of vacant homes left after last decade’s financial crash.

    “Since 2007, banks have foreclosed around eight million homes. It is estimated that another eight to ten million homes will be foreclosed before the financial crisis is over.  This approach to resolving one part of the financial crisis means many, many families are living without adequate and secure housing. In addition, approximately 3.5 million people in the U.S. are homeless, many of them veterans. It is worth noting that, at the same time, there are 18.5 million vacant homes in the country.”

    Most empty homes sit vacant after foreclosures, leaving them owned by banks that are loathe to part with them.

    The numbers appear to be similar in Europe, according to Rupert Neate, writing for the Guardian in 2014. Neate interviewed David Ireland, chief executive of the Empty Homes charity.

    “Homes are built for people to live in, if they’re not being lived in then something has gone seriously wrong with the housing market,” Ireland told Neate.

    According to the Guardian, European Union figures show that there are 4.1 million homeless living across Europe, while there are 11 million empty homes across the continent.

    Back in the U.S., another report last year highlighted the 77,000 empty government buildings that could be refitted to house the homeless. According to Matt Lemas, writing in Ryot, while some existing legislation allows for these kinds of conversions, it requires local pressure and pro-active legislators to be effective.

    “In San Francisco, for example, the city passed the Surplus Property Ordinance in 2004, which gave the Mayor’s Office for Housing the jurisdiction of vacant lots so they could be developed into shelters for homeless people,” Lemas wrote. “Additionally, in Seattle, a homeless grassroots group called Operation Homestead re-opened abandoned apartment buildings and turned them into affordable housing for formerly homeless people.”

    In October, the Atlantic reported that activists in Baltimore are pressuring lawmakers to house that city’s 30,000 homeless in its estimated 16,000 empty homes. “Clearly there’s a moral crisis when you see so many people in need of homes and there’s such a glut of vacant ones,” said Rachel Kutler, an organizer with United Workers.

    And in April, Utah announced it has almost eliminated chronic homelessness through a pioneering program to put the homeless in vacant apartments, then provide them with social services like drug rehabilitation after they are safely housed.

    “[O]fficials announced that they had reduced by 91% the ranks of the chronically homeless — defined as someone who has spent at least one year full-time on the streets — and are now approaching ‘functional zero,’” according to John M. Glionna, a national reporter for the Los Angeles Times. “In 2005, when state officials began placing people in permanent housing, they counted 1,932 chronically homeless. Today, with 1,764 people housed, that number has plummeted to just 178 statewide. And officials have their sights set on those remaining.”

    Overall, data from the National Alliance to End Homelessness suggests the homeless population, defined as those who sleep on the streets or resort to shelters, has decreased since 2007. But the same figures look far less positive after factoring in the number of people who still lack homes of their own. According to the alliance, “The number of poor people living doubled up, has grown substantially over the last several years. These are people who are housed, but not living independently in their own homes. This is a symptom of the affordable housing crisis in this country.”

    Watch “Housing is a Human Right,” a presentation by Sczerina Perot, a human rights lawyer, at TEDxASL (American School in London) 2013:

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    • Darknut

      I guess I succeeded! another #hoflake #triggered.

    • Ashley Johnson

      I’m doing well and still manage to have empathy for humanity. You are a c*nt….

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    • Bratista

      What incoherent troll babble…

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    • Chef Shawk Parson III

      … but letting empty homes rot instead of being legally occupied is
      good for business too: they can be demolished, repaired and be placed on
      the market again by banks! ^_^

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    • Bratista

      My husband and I both work at jobs that pay decently. Our young children are in school and we want to keep our jobs and let our kids have a stable life. One problem? We have searched for a rental for over a year and have not found one. We are not “homeless”, but we have had to move in with my MIL and all our things are in storage. We live on Cape Cod. 68% of the homes here are second homes, and year-round rentals are near impossible to find. We have raised our budget to it’s ansolute limits, but still cannot find anything. It is a slap in the face to see all the empty homes. We cannot afford to buy.

      This is affecting local businesses (workers can’t find rentals here and are leaving in droves).

      Also, all the Air bnb inspired rentals are making renting to locals much less attractive. It is shameful that people are being driven away from tgeir jobs and lives simply because of the greed of landlords who only want to rent to vacationers.

      • Cire Dna

        It appears there are tons of home for sale in the Cape Cod area that are reasonably priced….here’s 2 just for examples.

        21 Savary Ave,
        Sagamore Beach, MA 02562
        5 beds 2 baths 1,786 sqft only $525,000

        141 Captain Nickerson Rd,
        South Yarmouth, MA 02664
        3 beds 2 baths 1,285 sqft only $300,00

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    • Kevin

      Im homeless and would like a house. Im not a drug abuser or have serious mental issues. Just a normal guy that had some bad luck. And being that I worked and paid taxes that went to these banks that got bailed out for these homes, I think I might be somewhat entitled to one.
      Another thing is a lot of homeless ppl work and still get taxed a good deal even tho they cant support themselves with whats left over. I say if youre homeless, you dont get taxed at all and also qualify for the EIC credit whether you have kids or not.

      • Kara Holm

        If you would like a home, buy one. You are entitled to nothing.

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    • MissBrendaWI

      When the house are foreclosed, The Banks get tax write offs.

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    • Eric Scout

      The simple solution is for the bank to be convinced that these are liabilities not assets, to hire the homeless to deconstruct these sites, and have them sold to recycling companies for spare parts. Each place giving an income based off of a percent from the money gotten from the recycling companies. With the money from these projects the homeless should be able to increase their standard of living.

      Utilities cost money, but housing doesn’t need utilities the homeless live without such. You can if the system allows not have taxes on the homes. And just have squatters. They already do this its just not legal or accepted. At the end the system just spites them and loses out on an opportunity to recoup some of the money lost.

      Some places can be renovated, but right now its more sensible to get some money back then start from scratch again.

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    • neuterable

      “The trouble with Socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money” ~Margaret Thatcher

      Redistribution of assets can’t resolve this problem.

      The real problem is, the price of things has been detached from their actual value, mostly because the Federal Government got involved with the Lending Process, forcing lenders to lend at times when they shouldn’t and allowing people to buy homes based not on what they could afford to spend, but on what they could manage to borrow.

      These houses are standing vacant, because the owners can’t admit to the fact that they are not actually Worth what they are trying to sell them for. The prices need to be allowed to stabilize, at a level where they sell, for what people can actually afford to reasonably pay.

      Until then, the owners get to pay the taxes, pay the maintenance and pay to keep the hobos from squatting, year after year while they artificially inflate their balance sheets by pretending these rotting relics from the housing bubble are assets rather than liabilities.

      • Eric Scout

        Redistribution of assets would push the problem to the future, which is what all legislation is about. Having fewer homeless people and less suffering in the city would be beneficial to society, and if we could push these people into productive recycling citizens it would be best. Taxes and Maintenance are State side issues which go poof the moment when socialism legalizes this.

        When you live in a home, you have a ventured interested in its upkeep. The homeless will take care of the property or let it rot around them. What would be best is that these people are trained, and become productive citizens. The key factor is that this has to be new jobs, and not damage a haphazard economy.

        • neuterable

          While this is an interesting theory, the condition of every slum on the planet would suggest that it doesn’t actually work that way. Get the price right and more people would be able to afford housing and begin to work their way up.

          Start seizing and forcibly redistributing property and you will soon find that you have nothing left to hand out.

          • Darknut

            Really? The condition of Denmark suggests it actually does work. Slums happen because of slum lords –a perfect example of the dark side of capitalism. Instead of bread lines, people starve while the bread rots…

            Making sure poor people don’t get anything for free actually has a cost. Sometimes you’re spending 100 dollars to make sure someone doesn’t get your dime. On a societal level we can’t afford that.

            • neuterable

              Ah yes, Denmark, that tiny ethnically homogeneous country with a population smaller than Israel. Perhaps you should compare America with a country that shares its Demographics, like Mexico or Zimbabwe?

              Without Slum Lords, the Slummy people live NOWHERE. If they could live in Denmark, I am sure they would all go there and then Denmark would suck too. You stand in your bread line, I’ll make sure the few remaining bakers know to poison your loaf.

              • Darknut

                Ah yes, Denmark, that tiny ethnically homogeneous country with a population smaller than Israel

                Oh I see our problems are because we have black and brown people…. we’re not “ethnically homologous.” But you’re not racist or anything no surree.

                You know if you break down the US population we have lots of cities with populations smaller than Israel –if that’s your problem then problem solved! Thanks basic math!

                • neuterable

                  Why yes, your “Black and Brown” people do tend to live in slums don’t they. Tell you what, you go live in Zimbabwe for awhile and let me know when you’ve turned it into a Socialist Utopia.

        • Bratista

          I am practically homeless because there is a dearth of rentals where I live. My husband and I work and have money, but the homes around us have been bought up to be used as summer rentals. You fail to address the problem of homes sitting empty when hardworking people who could pay for them need a place to live.

          • Beta Amorphous

            State side public housing would solve those issues well enough. Our prisons cost 60,000 per year per person in a cell. Each cell costs 120,000 to 240,000 per year.

            Clearly setting up facilities with similiar layouts to enable workers dormatories is not impossible. The only hindrance is to the current overpriced workerside system of apartments/motels.

            It’s not that it can’t happen, but no one is voting to make it happen. If more attention was put into making housing affordable then it would happen.

      • Darknut

        Why is it the only time reactionary righties give a crap about “other people’s money” is when it’s helping people who aren’t rich? War? Sky’s the limit here’s a blank check! Private prisons? Back up the money truck and get the shovel we have all the money in the world for that! Help people? OMG NO! How will we afford it? #rightwinglogic.

        BTW tell me when did Thatcher NOT spend “other people’s money?” It’s the story of her entire life.

        • neuterable

          Pay for a war, you win the war, you don’t get conquered, enslaved and dumped in a mass grave.

          Pay for the poor and you get, more poor.

          • Darknut

            We’re not going to get conquered with way way less war spending.

            “Pay for poor and you get more poor?” How? That’s like saying “pay for dental work and you get more cavities.” you make no sense at all.

            We were losing 45 thousand Americans a year because of no health insurance, the mass graves are already here.

            Pay for war and you get more war.

            • neuterable

              Word games aside, Insurance doesn’t stop you from dying, at best it delays your death while prices increase and quality declines. Insurance companies don’t stay in business by paying out more than they take in and government slush funds just create a deeper well for price gougers to gather from.

              You will be conquered, because you are weak and you are hated. You are no longer capable of stopping it, but don’t worry, I am sure we will come up with some great “Health Care” for you.

              • Darknut

                “Insurance doesn’t stop you from dying” Access to health care most certainly stops you from dying if you have a treatable condition. and if it’s you or someone you care about “delaying your death” is pretty f$%^ important. Honestly how what you typed makes any sense at all to you or anyone is baffling.

                “bla bla price gougers…” Yeah that’s why places with universal health care charge less overall.

                ” just create a deeper well for price gougers to gather from.”
                No it creates a unified and stronger consumer base with more POWER to negotiate AS ONE with the “price gougers.” As it is now… as you would have it we are facing massive corporations as individuals helpless against them. But united we have power. Which is PROVEN everywhere IT WORKS.

                • neuterable

                  No, everywhere it has proven to eventually cave in on itself after driving up prices and ruining care.

                  Places with “Universal Health Care” will do a fine job of giving you steel crowns and whatever else Communists still provide, assuming you live long enough to receive them. They might give you secondhand knockoffs of things developed in those few remaining free countries where innovation can still turn a profit.

                  In my case, if I need some work done quickly and out of pocket, I can do that in South Korea, in a little shop upstairs to a steakhouse and I can do it faster and with more modern medicine than your Single Payer alternatives will provide.

                  You can let me know how your socialist utopia is working out if you can find an internet connection in The Worker’s Paradise of Venezuela.

                  • Darknut

                    “No, everywhere it has proven to eventually cave in on itself after driving up prices and ruining care.”

                    Hahah OK that’s why we pay twice as much for the 37th rated health care in the world.

                    all that “free market success.” LOL

                    You got ANYTHING to back up your statements? No? That’s what I thought.

                    “Bla bla bla Korea Bla bla” um who’s talking about Korea? I’m talking about Norway.

                  • Darknut

                    “No, everywhere it has proven to eventually cave in on itself after driving up prices and ruining care.”

                    LOL were? You mean in the 36 countries with higher WHO rated health care systems than here where they pay half as much for better outcomes, longer lifespans better infant mortality rates, you name it. Capitalism ruins health care and the WHOLE WORLD knows it except insurance company middle men have brainwashed you into thinking they’re needed and handing over our money to them. Because freedumb.

                    “Bla bla bla Venezualia” Haha why do reactionaries think the only country in the world with any socialism is Venezualia? and 100% of all their problems are “becuz soshlizm”

                    That’s like me saying “Hey tell me how it works out in your rugged capitalist paradise in Somalia!” No taxes, guns everywhere ,none of that evil Soshlizm! No gubment health care … no “job killing regulations.” Why don’t you move to Somalia? Send us a postcard from your giant mansion beacuse you’re sure to be successful without all that “government in the way.” ROFL

                    • neuterable

                      Oh look, you are replying to yourself again with the same nonsense.

                      You point at systems that failed or are gradually failing and you are patting yourself on the back, spreading that failure around.

                      Asians live long, Europeans live almost as long and Africans and Hispanics Don’t, it has nothing to do with your “Little red book”.

                      Go back to typing LOL and ROFL like that is an argument, I am glad you will have socialized medicine and I am glad they will dispose of you.

                  • Darknut

                    Don’t like South Korea or Venezuela? How about Germany, Japan, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, France, Italy, Spain, Canada… Is it a “meat shop with a medicine bla bla ” in ALL those places?

                    And what exactly is it about paying insurance company middle men billions of dollars to take our money and give some of it back to us after paying their shareholders, executive bonuses, marketing and corporate bureaucracy that “saves us money?” How is that different from single payer in any useful way? They create nothing.

    • Dave Navarro Sr.

      Far left liberal thinking is way too insane for me. If you did let homeless move into these houses, who will pay the utilities and who will keep the property clean and safe? The homeless occupants? If you believe that, you are not living in reality. Most of these homes are owned by a bank. Do you really expect them to give away their investments? I tend to support the truly homeless to some extent, giving them a hand up. But it is clear, at least in my area, that the vast majority of homeless are chronic drug addicts who can’t or won’t get a job. Their method of income is begging and stealing… to pay for their next fix. Their little living areas around town are pig stys filled with the garbage THEY leave behind. You really want to bring that into neighborhoods? NIMBY would be the order of the day.

      • Eric Scout

        The Govt should treat the addicts as people with drug problems as a health issue as much as a mental one. Lock em up, and give em their fix. Keep em off the street until they shape up with a voucher from a person who’s sane. The Homeless cause much crime, and are a pain for many wealthy citizens to look at. Simply giving them what they want would be cheaper and more humane, as well as more safe.

      • Estella Cohen

        Several banks[Chase, Bank of America, Wells Fargo] admitted fraud and are paying it’s debts in the BILLIONS to the government WITH NO ONE GOING TO JAIL!!!!! Meanwhile people have lost their homes. “The majority of homeless are chronic drug addicts…..”, you have NOT seen the number of kids in America that are homeless. When I left teaching 10 yrs. ago there was a form that many kids filled out that didn’t exist only 5 years before dealing with their homelessness. The homeless are already living among us….maybe you just don’t want to see them…remembering American society and greed is partly to blame.

      • DNA(splicer)

        I’m homeless living off my car and with 2 jobs can’t afford rent. I can’t even afford to buy a new catalytic converter so I can pass my inspection lol. Homeless people aren’t all addicts strung up on drugs. Most homeless people are homeless because it is logically to feed ones stomach than pay all ur money on rent. Rent won’t pay for food or gas for ur car. Why is rent or buying a house so expensive.?

        • Cire Dna

          To DNA, you work 2 jobs and not only claim that you cannot afford rent, but you can’t even buy a catalytic converter??!! WTF!
          Somethings seriously wrong with the “jobs” you have, along with how you spend your money. SMH.

          • I hope and pray you are never in circumstances where you are homeless and need of a hand up from your fellow man…because the day that happens, will be the day you lose that chip on your shoulder, and suffer what you’ve sown, ma’dam! You’re going to reap what you sow, lady, and it’s not going to be pretty for you…I feel sorry for you. And I pray for mercy on your soul!!!

            • Cire Dna

              Don’t pray for me because that will never happen. How would it be possible for me to ever be homeless?? SMH…you know some people do own more than 1 home. Some people also manage to have enough funds to bankroll them through any type of financial situation without worrying about your next paycheck…pray for yourself loser.

              • Bratista

                What a c*nt

                • Darknut

                  Probably not triggered by the word “c*nt” Privilege. That word seems to trigger out of touch reactionaries.

                  • Bratista

                    She is a c*nt. Not meant to trigger, just a fair assessment.

                    • Darknut

                      I meant to trigger. hahah .

              • Darknut

                It probably wouldn’t be possible because you are super lucky and privileged and have a lot of things to fall back on that not everyone has.

                • Kara Holm

                  Privileged…. Jesus. Why is everyone that is doing well privileged?
                  Everyone always has an excuse

                  • Darknut

                    Privileged…. If you “couldn’t possibly be homeless” it means literally You have a lot of things you take for granted that you DID NOT EARN YOURSELF. Yes whether you want to admit it or not. Jesus. Everyone always lives in denial.

      • Darknut

        The quality of homeless people has gone up considerably since 2009. They’re not all mentally ill drug addicted derelicts…. They’re a lot of times regular people who just ran out of options, and with a home, instead of leaving the home empty, they would have a much better chance of being productive and able to contribute to society than they can living in their car (if they have a car).

        It’s cheaper to put someone on welfare than to put them in jail, and the former has a much better rate of recidivism. People usually do better when given a chance.

        The “leftie way of thinking” is otherwise known as math. We don’t want to spend 100 dollars to make sure somebody doesn’t get a free dime.

        • Darknut

          I might add “mentally ill drug addicted derelicts” are human beings who are sick and need help. Like if a person is drowning and we’re just walking by stepping over life preservers…

      • Cire Dna

        Exactly. There’s no way they could afford the huge expenses of bringing these homes up to code, become inhabitable, paying the back taxes and whatever else is owed.
        Just where is all the $$ supposed to come from for these endeavors. SMH.
        Having all the utilities turned on would be beyond what any of the homeless population could pay out. The deposits aren’t cheap, plus most of them wouldn’t be able to have utilities in their name because of lack of credit, funds, and backgrounds.
        The logic of the writer of this article has the mentality of maybe a 12 year at most. It is very expensive to “beautify” these homes and even couples with both earning good wages wouldn’t want to get into a place that is nothing but a massive non stop waste of money that they’d regret severely in hind sight.

      • Bratista

        Some “homeless” are like me and my husband. We both work, but there is a dearth of rentals in our area. With an ability to pay $1600/mo for rent, we still haven’t found a rental for over a year. And we are far from alone in this. Homeless people aren’t all unemployed vagrants; some of us have kids in school, we work, and we strive, but out of state landlords have bought uo property to use it as summer homes, making the rental market insanely limited.

        • Kara Holm

          If you all that is available is 1600/month houses, then move. Move to a town you can afford. Everyone wants to blame their situation on someone else but guess what. You’re the one still living in that town when you can’t afford it.

          • Bratista

            Moving costs money. Also, I have a good job. So, you are saying, leave your jobs for uncertainty and go into debt to move? You are pretty stupid.

      • Ashley Johnson

        The formerly homeless people pay when they can now get jobs and an education instead of rotting on the streets….

    • Paula Plante

      Although I do understand the plight of the homeless (I am going to a Memorial Service for a homeless resident later today) and agree we need to help those in need, I am also living next door to a family who is on State assistance.My friend’s own the home and loved their home but a job loss forced them to move to another state where he found employment. The problem is that no one holds section 8 renters accountable for the home. Vernon CT Housing Authority does not make the renters abide by the contract stating the 2 adults and 3 children can reside in the home. These people had up to 15 people in the home, a home that they are destroying. Not only don’t they take care of it, there are holes in the walls, light fixtures pulled from the ceiling, sinks literally hanging from the walls, garbage in the driveway and on the lawn and they continually scrape the side of the home when they pull in and out of the driveway, breaking the shingles and taking off the paint. They don’t pay so they don’t care. It’s been 10 months and the owners cannot get them out. Vernon Housing Authority has not made them abide by the contract and now these The process for eviction began 8 months ago and they are still there. I own my home and these tenants have affected my quality of life in addition to bringing down the property value of my home and the neighbors. Unless tenants are responsible for caring for the home and someone holds them accountable if they don’t, this is not a good idea.

      • Cire Dna

        Exactly Paula. It seems nowadays that even renters- not just section 8 anymore, have no respect and completely destroy one home after another. Unfortunately that is happening now to a home next door to mine. Every renter added to the damage, until finally the last psycho family with a multitude of kids, totally destroyed the place causing extensive damage. The house sold for a fraction of its original worth,so it was quickly snatched up and after rehabbing most of the inside, will be flipped.
        I’m dreading the fact that someone will buy it just to use again as a rental.

        • Don’t ya just love people who use overgeneralization fallacies to make their argument. Problem is, those who use those fallacies, tend to be to ignorant and lazy to bother researching the facts! No, rather, they just spew their hatred, bigotry, and discriminatory rhetoric and expect it to be accepted as fact. Lady, one day, you’re going to reap some serious, serious pain and suffering upon yourself. And unfortunately, with that chip on your shoulder and complete self involvement, you’ll never comprehend why it’s even happening to you…utter proof of your ignorance and myopic views! God help you!!!

          • Cire Dna

            You must be one of those dreaded renters- probably a Section 8 abuser. LOL- now you can accuse me of “overgeneralization”, when in reality what I wrote about is factual, no fallacies about how homes are indeed destroyed by the very ones you spew your grandiloquent rhetoricals about.
            “Lady, one day, you’re going to reap some serious, serious pain and suffering upon yourself.” LMAO tsk tsk.

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    • joz molody

      So the author would like to force all property owners to forfeit property they aren’t using currently so they can decide who would receive it. What about the property owner’s rights? What about the neighbor’s safety and property values when people move in who can’t afford basic upkeep on the home? And what about when the homeless complain that the property isn’t in the location of their choice?
      Everyone wants to give homeless people all kinds of handouts-as long as they homeless aren’t housed next to their home or business.

      • inbredyokel

        I do hope that you never have to rely on charity or compassion from someone like yourself.

      • labormaid

        Geeze, really??? These are properties that are abandoned for many reasons. If a property owner is too lazy to keep up their property, and stops paying taxes on it, they deserve to lose it. Houses that are abandoned cause way more problems for neighborhoods that ones that are lived in. They can quickly become dumping and breeding grounds for rodents.

        BTW, Most of the homeless aren’t any more dangerous than you are.

        • Eric Scout

          Abandoned locations owned by the Govt should IMO need a tag to reserve the place, without such tag from the Fed Govt Courts it should be open for some Agency to hop in to recycle the location for spare parts. The metal, wiring, and abandoned items can all be recycled. Then sold for pennies to a recycling company to make raw resources for other companies to use.

    • GALT

      This is a remarkable game being played by “idiots” who actually think
      this “economy” is going to recover……….but the infinite growth model
      of “economics” is over…….there exists a brief period to transition from
      where we are to a “sustainable entropy based model of economics” where
      the reward is “you get to live” and maybe for the first time in the history of
      civilization, enjoy the time you have……..or?

      • UTNVOLN

        HAVE you even read a newspaper lately?? The economy HAS recovered, unemployment is @ the lowest level since 2007 (when DumbYa was finally leaving), the Stock Market is high AND steady. I’ll tell ya what…give me your email addy, and I’ll send you the OMB (govt) report. OK??

        • GALT

          Thanks for jumping in….

          • Eric Scout

            The economy slanted upwards, the job market has basically decreased wages for the same old work. While inflation always rises.

        • GALT

          You just funnin with me?

        • neuterable

          Are you familiar with the term “Seasonal Adjustment”? The BLS figures on unemployment were not designed to account for multiple bad years. Prior years are used to determine a baseline for new years so even if employment doesn’t improve, every year the number goes down a little at a time, not even including people who just don’t count anymore.

          Instead, try looking at the Workforce participation level, in which case your shiny new banana republic is about on par with South Africa.

          But wait, there is more, a nice way to keep your stock market afloat, borrow trillions of dollars you can’t pay back to inflate it, brilliant.

          Here are the facts zombie, in terms of actual assets, China has a bigger economy than you now and when the countries keeping your craptastic nation afloat stop feeding you rope, you will stick your fat neck through the noose on the end and hang yourself with it.

    • Lil25

      This is just terrible. We are fortunate enough to have a six-figure income, but we haven’t been able to buy a home because of a lack of inventory and very high prices. The fact that banks won’t allow anyone to live in these houses is downright immoral.

      • Eric Scout

        They need to keep the value high, its plain economics. Immoral is right, but they get no benefits otherwise, and they stand to lose more long term by being good. They might lose out in the short term, but housing is something people will want/need sooner or later.

      • Kara Holm

        So the fact that banks won’t sell their property that is valued at a high price, for a lower price, is immoral?
        Nope. If you can’t pay for it, you can’t buy it. Simple as that.