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Bits and Pieces 7-31
Posted by: Lance on Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Government is ruining Arnold Klings day yet again:
What he is referring to is a provision of the new housing bill that takes about $500 million a year from Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae to fund an "affordable-housing" program. Broder notes that since the FM's are undercapitalized right now, the program will not take effect until 2010 (as if they will have enough capital by then)
Heh, yeah, we are getting rid of these two. We are turning them into an even bigger slush fund, now under the direct control of Congress critters.
Affordable housing? We have millions of unoccupied homes in this country. Housing is becoming more affordable every day. There is no shortage of houses. If people can't afford housing, what they need is money. They don't need a state-run rehab program that adds to the inventory of houses.

Rooting for Congress to do something about affordable housing is like rooting for a thief to find an empty car with the door open and the keys inside. "Affordable housing," like "family farmer," is nothing but a stalking horse for pork.
That's right, increase the number of homes on the market, that will stop the slide in home prices.

Meanwhile some people are so full of themselves:
In New York and Maryland, we have made targeted investments in clean, renewable energy. We have stepped up where the federal government has fallen down to make critical investments in our infrastructure, including mass transit and roads. We are also supporting foreclosure prevention programs and investing in public education so our students continue to improve and excel, and increasing access to health care for those who remain uninsured.
Not only is this all wonderful, it is fiscally responsible:
It is estimated that for every $1 billion invested in transportation projects, 42,000 jobs are created, and that every dollar spent on infrastructure projects generates about $5.70 in economic activity.
Kling is nonplussed:
In that case, since the Federal government collects 20 percent of all economic activity in taxes, the Federal government deficit declines by $.14 for every $1 it spends on infrastructure projects. If we spend about $3.5 trillion on infrastructure, we can turn the $500 billion deficit into a surplus!

Well, McCain will save us!
Recently the subject came up of Al Gore's assertion that the U.S. could get its energy solely from renewables in 10 years. Sen. McCain said: "If the vice president says it's doable, I believe it's doable."
Lynn Kiesling has a fascinating article about deregulation of electricity in Texas. Recent articles have attacked it, she finds it a success.

A new Van Gogh, actually a lot of them. It turns out the ear hater was a recycler.

DC may be ignoring Heller, but not every place is.

This may be one of the best things I have read all year.

The geography of wealth, and the Anglosphere infection.

Speaking of infections, this is cool and Wal-Mart is eeevill.

Non dogmatic libertarians debating health care. Tyler Cowen, Megan McCardle, Arnold Kling.

"The Nation" is upset about postal rates.

California in a bid to do for California what new Labour has done for Britain, adds yet another stupid regulation to go with outlawing fast food in East LA and unregulated foot rubbing everywhere. They are the first state to outlaw trans fats.
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