The enormous expenditure on a private company is dispiriting for many reasons, not the least of which is Musk’s public rhetoric on subsidies. In the past, he has spoken quite eloquently about the problems with taxpayer funding for private projects, saying in 2021 that “the role of the government should be that of a referee, but not a player on the field.” And yet he and his companies have benefited significantly from government largesse, to the tune of billions of dollars since 2010.
Houston is not a free-for-all. It requires a minimum number of parking spaces for different uses, which encourages sprawl. Its complex development code limits how many homes you may build on an acre. But it has no zoning, and its density restrictions are less severe than in almost any other large city.
The surprisingly strong argument for abolishing zoning is the rare case of successfully moving the “Overton window.” It should make all of us more sympathetic to fundamental reforms.
X-Dumpsters owner Steven Hedrick rents roll-away dumpsters to people, but now his city forces residents to contract with the county.
In his lawsuit, Hedrick contends that the ordinance constitutes a monopoly, which “violates the anti-monopoly clause and the due process clause of the Arkansas Constitution.” Article II, Section 19 of the Arkansas Constitution states that monopolies “are contrary to the genius of a republic, and shall not be allowed.”
Nigeria’s shantytowns are more functional than its centrally planned gated communities.
This comparison speaks to a paradox I’ve found with African real estate. The more “formal” a project is—with master plans, institutional investors, and government involvement—the more slowly it materializes. The more “informal” it is, with minimal rules other than how locals self-govern, the more quickly it becomes a real city.
As Adam Smith explained so brilliantly, if the goal of economic policy is – as it should be – the achievement of prosperity as great as possible for ordinary people, mercantilism fails. It impoverishes ordinary people rather than enriches them.
Home prices were unaffected by a ban on buy-to-rent housing in the Netherlands, but more affordable rental housing disappeared.
Policy makers would do better to look for ways to expand housing supply through deregulation of construction and mortgage finance than passing laws restricting who’s allowed to buy a house.
Teenagers who work part-time see lifelong benefits.
We need to stop treating teenagers as inherently fragile, or they’ll become that way. Real-world exposure to the challenge of getting paid to do things that other people value will benefit them for the rest of their lives.
Though the Supreme Court has come a long way in protecting equality before the law, it still refuses to protect the right to earn a living
Policymakers across the country should marshal current public support for building more homes and make zoning reform a policy priority. Doing so would unlock opportunity for a wide variety of people.
“I’ve warned my publishers that if they later on so much as change a single comma in one of my books, they will never see another word from me. Never! Ever!” [Dahl] said. With his typically evocative language, he added: “When I am gone, if that happens, then I’ll wish mighty Thor knocks very hard on their heads with his Mjolnir. Or I will send along the ‘enormous crocodile’ to gobble them up.”