• John Spritzler

The Free Market Is the Problem, NOT the Solution for Obtaining Affordable Housing for ALL

Updated: Mar 8, 2020

Those who oppose our fight--to make the rich create affordable housing for all who contribute reasonably according to ability--use some factually false as well as downright immoral arguments. Here they are.

False argument #1. "We need to rely on the free market--with prices determined by supply and demand--to provide our housing needs."

Fact: We have Social Security today in spite of, not because of, the free market. In the 1930s FDR and the upper class he represented feared there would be a revolution to remove them from power unless they "calmed the waters" with the New Deal, of which Social Security was a major part. Read all about this here. Likewise, this is the reason public housing was built. The free market would never have provided these things, because it is about selling things to people who have enough money to pay for them, not selling things to people who are too poor to pay for them, duh! Not the free market, but rather the fear of a growing egalitarian revolutionary movement aiming to remove the rich from power is what will persuade the rich to create lots more affordable housing. By "the rich" is meant not just the real estate housing developers but the entire upper class that, collectively, controls our government at every level.

Fact: Here is how we can have affordable housing for all without relying on the free market.

False and immoral argument #2. "If you can't pay for a nice home then you don't deserve to live in one."

Fact: What determines if somebody deserves to live in a nice home or have the other things they need or reasonably desire is NOT whether or not they have enough money to buy them. No! A person deserves these things if he/she contributes reasonably according to ability. The reasonable contribution of children, and of people past retirement age who contributed reasonably according to ability when younger, is zero, as is the reasonable contribution of people who are unable (for whatever reason) to contribute. Those who contribute reasonably according to ability deserve a nice home and the other things they need or reasonably desire (or deserve to have equal status when scarce things are rationed equitably according to ability) no matter how much money they have. This is what is moral. Those who disagree--they are the immoral ones.

False argument #3: "Only a free market economy produces the things we desire."

Fact: Actually, an egalitarian economy based on "From each according to reasonable ability, to each according to need or reasonable desire with scarce things equitably rationed according to need" OUTPERFORMED the free market capitalist economy that it replaced in about half of Spain in 1936 for three years. Read the details about this here.

False and immoral argument #4: "People who demand 'Affordable Housing for ALL' are immoral people who believe that they are entitled to things just because they exist, and instead of looking for ways to strengthen themselves to be self-sufficient, look to others to carry them, and are really in conflict with the natural order of things. That cannot be a base on which a strong society is built."

Fact: Egalitarians such as myself who demand 'Affordable Housing for ALL' do NOT say that anybody deserves something just because it exists. Read the "Fact" response to "False and immoral argument #2" above to see what egalitarians actually say. The phrase "Affordable Housing for ALL" is shorthand for "Affordable Housing for All Who Contribute Reasonably According to Ability." The word "ALL" in this shorthand thus means "virtually all," since the VAST majority of people who want, but presently lack, affordable housing are people who DO contribute reasonably according to ability. Clearly, the people who oppose affordable housing for "ALL" also oppose affordable housing for "virtually all." Their argument #4 is simply a way to defend their immoral position.

Misleading argument #5: "People who want affordable housing for all want to use wrongful violence to make it so."

Fact: The people who make this argument are not pacifists. They approve of all the violence that is used today to enforce class inequality (some rich and some poor). For example they approve of the violence that the police use (or credibly threaten to use) to evict a person from his/her rented apartment if he/she is unable to pay the rising (due to gentrification--as explained here) rent. The only violence they do not approve of is whatever violence in self defense ordinary people may use to abolish the immoral class inequality that makes it so that ordinary people are treated like dirt.

False argument #6: "The people calling for 'Affordable housing for ALL" are actually--though they deny it-Communists who want to impose an ugly Communist dictatorship."

Fact: Actually, we egalitarians who are calling for "Affordable housing for ALL" are anti-Marxists and anti-Communists, as you can read about here and here and here and here. Those who use the false argument #6 persist in making this argument even though they know it is false, hoping that the people hearing them will not know it is false. This demonstrates the immoral deceitfulness of those making this argument.

False argument #7: "What the people calling for 'Affordable housing for ALL' want can only be implemented with gulag-like mentality ('we’re going to put you in chains for greater good').  But here and everywhere, people who see themselves as free will never agree to any 'Central Bureau' telling them what they can charge for their work or fruits of their labor."

Fact: The egalitarian alternative to the capitalist free market economy does NOT entail any 'Central Bureau' ordering people around; such 'Central Bureaus' are what Communists want, not what egalitarians want. An egalitarian economy is based on mutual agreements among people and the way it works is described in my article titled "What Replaces the "Free Market" in an Egalitarian Sharing Economy?" Most people have egalitarian values (no-rich-and-no-poor equality and mutual aid) and when they succeed in removing the rich from power they eagerly do what millions of them did in 1936 in about half Spain--they create an egalitarian economy that (as mentioned above) OUTPERFORMED the prior capitalist free market economy; read about it here.

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