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Monday, May 24, 2021

The Continuing Devolution Of California

Back when Mr. AOW and I vacationed in Southern California from 1975-2006, I always looked forward to visiting festive and beautiful Venice Beach. Such a beautiful place, bustling with activity and joy! Yes, there were a few vagrants, but so few as barely to be noticed. But now:
 


Additional information (video): Venice Beach taken over by homeless encampments.

45 comments:

  1. Our nation is experiencing multiple interlocking crises. It has been a popular comment that our nation has been broken for a long time, Covid just revealed it to everyone. I blame globalization and an estrangement from our Maker.

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    1. "estrangement from our Maker"
      Bingo.

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    2. More of the "disenchantment of the image"... familiarity breeds contemp. The death of the charismata...

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    3. Homo Sacer as "pollution"....

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    4. .....Covid just revealed it to everyone.

      Exactly.

      While certainly not the only recent event to cause this, COVID has indeed helped expose the tragedy that our society has become.....entitled, intellectually lazy and beholden to charlatans and grifters who make them feel better [or more of a victim].

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  2. The "hyper-reality" of Venice in the 60's now clashes with the "hyper-reality" of Venice in the 2020's. Only the level of wealth and luxury in the dream driving that hyper-reality has decayed... for the "real" of Venice beach would be a beach devoid of human structures...

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    1. A "Tragedy of the Commons" arising from values of "justice" superceding values of "wisdom"...born of weak, ineffective, and overly "technocratic/bureaucratic/bloated" leadership structures.

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    2. “Venice Beach: Where human poop and needles are part of the fun”

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  3. "Is this problem fixable?"

    What problem are you trying to fix?

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  4. California is learning a lesson first taught in the Great Depression of the 1920s. When you give freebies to the "hobos" and advertise that you are doing so, you become a magnet for those "hobos" and they flock to you in droves, overwhelming you. California is giving tons of freebies to homeless people, and has become the "Mecca" for homeless people nationwide.

    They have not yet learned that being homeless is not the problem, but is merely a symptom of the problem. Almost all of these people at one time had homes and lost them. Why?

    Giving them homes, which is what California does, does not solve the problem any more than putting a person with Covid19 into cold water. Sure, cold water would bring down the fever, but what then? Sure, they'll be in a house, but how will they pay the utilities? How will they eat?

    Putting them into a house/apartment does not solve mental illness, addiction, or all the other problems that caused them to lose their homes to begin with. California has not yet figured that out.

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    1. Liberals generally, and California liberals in particular, are enamored of easy answers to hard problems.

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  5. People without homes do pull at an average person’s heartstrings. The problems are several, but it would help if state and federal agencies could agree about what constitutes homelessness. HUD defines homelessness one way, and the DoE defines it another. There are probably as many opinions about this as there are homeless people, ranging between 5 to 8 million souls on any given day. Even with disagreement about numbers and definitions, there are many “unsheltered” people, or if you prefer, street people and they do constitute a threat to health, sanitation, community security, and neighborhood aesthetics. Why are people homeless ... and why are there massive numbers of tent cities in 46 states? Claims that minorities are affected more than majority populations appear moot: 38.9% of the homeless are white, 39.4% are black. Interesting, but it doesn’t solve the problem.

    Causes, then? Ranked in order of their importance, according to several sources (which probably borrow from each other): (1) Lack of affordable housing; (2) Unemployment; (3) Poverty; and (4) Low wages. Unemployment and resulting lack of income to afford housing appear to be a no-brainer. But why are these people unemployed? Mental illness leads the pack, and perhaps rampant substance abuse is connected to mental instability. It might help to have facilities that actually treat mental illnesses, but Democrats gave up that idea long ago when Carter emptied all the mental institutions and set the patients on their course for living under bridges and overpasses. I’m guessing that until state and federal agencies’ programs begin dealing with the mental instability and substance abuse issues, there won’t be more than band-aid fixes, which never work well for a sucking chest wound. On a positive note, though, the “crazies” are reliable democrats, once “voting advisors” give them bottles of cheap whiskey and a carton of cigs. This probably explains why democrats resist voter ID laws ... I noticed none of the tents at Venice Beach have house numbers.

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  6. IMO the Democrats and Blue States are stuck with these "homeless encampments" because their political coalition is built upon two ideological theories, intersectionality and class essentialism... and ultimately (per Marxist theory) it is the illusion of class essentialism that must appear to reign supreme and must be kowtow'd to.

    Class essentialism dictates that all struggles (racial, sex, religious, etc.) are ultimately subordinate to the class struggle. Intersectionality divides the working class into racial, ethnic, sexual orientation, etc. sub-classes who then only "work together" under the "deferred" class essentialist structure. Without the logic of "class essentialism" there is no strategic reason for these diverse Intersectional classes to cooperate.

    And let's face it, the homeless are the ultimate lumpen proletariat who do cannot afford to self-identify on a strictly intersectional basis, as could a member of BLM or LGBTQ+ They are the indivisible base that ALL Democrats swear must be defended at all costs.

    And so, the homeless hold the Democrat politicians hostage, so as not to upset their vastly more numerous "intersectionally-oriented" voters. Any move to evict the homeless would be seen as a betrayal of their commitment to class-essentialism, the glue of the intersectionally inclined.

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    1. These problems are not as pronounced in Red States because the Authorities there are willing to use and apply force to keep vagrancy out of sight and out of mind. Their "capitalist" ideals in support of local bourgeois shop owners outweigh their Humanitarian feelings. Call this the "wisdom of capitalism", if you want, which lies opposed to the "foolishness" of the socially just Blue Staters.

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    2. Evict them where? I've heard it said that other towns would put their homeless on a bus and pay their ticket to San Fran. Dunno how true that is, but if that did happen i'm not sure it qualifies as wisdom.

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    3. Evict them from parks and beaches. It's wisdom if you value the businesses in those areas. It's a dereliction of their civic duty to private property owners if they don't.

      It used to be that these local Democrat politicians needed campaign donations from local business, but with the corporate oligarchy paying the bills now, small business gets no pro quo for its' quid.... and so the homeless encampment flourish.

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    4. I remember the scandal back in the 80's when a few local vigilante business owners in Santa Cruz were harassing a homeless encampment and trying to get it moved.... They should have paid a local mafia protection racket to drive the homeless out. Civic officials were useless.

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    5. The answer is to build tilt-ups, air conditioned/heated, in the Desert...near Victorville. With counselors, job training, etc etc. Get them there as a 'halfway house' and then OUT to their own lives. The homeless will NOT go downtown to shelters because you can't booze and drug in them.. that's been a problem for YEARS. Cops have told me they just won't GO.
      They used to populate the beautiful Santa Monica bluffs and Lefties fed them out of compassion then complained why the homeless were there. They stopped feeding and VOILA...they're GONE completely from the bluffs for the last 10 years or so!
      insanity prevails today....

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  7. Replies
    1. Out of the country, preferably.

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    2. Imagine the field-day a right-populist "Mexico Trump" would have with that!

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  8. It will be interesting to see how Texas deals with the growing homelessness in Austin. Since the Mayor has okayed encampments it is being reported that the city has become a magnet for the homeless.. Yes, the beginning was emptying out the state mental hospitals... I recall vagrancy laws...anyone else remember you could get arrested?

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  9. I'm with Joe. That said, it'll doubtless take a hard reset to get fixed. Unfortunately.

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  10. Bunkerville says "Yes, the beginning was emptying out the state mental hospitals." Kind of.
    The liberals around here (the still wonderful L.A.) go there the MINUTE a Conservative like me and my friends points out how horrible the homeless situation is...IMMEDIATELY, they go to RONALD REAGAN EMPTIED the mental hospitals! Then we remind them what YEAR that was, and that Democrats have been in charge since, and IF THEY ARE SO UNHAPPY ABOUT THAT, WHY DIDN'T THEY FIX IT??...THEY'VE HAD FORTY YEARS!! :-) Shuts them RIGHT up........
    Heck, a friend has a very 'bright' lawyer liberal friend who said she didn't think San Francisco has homeless! People just don't KNOW, CNN doesn't want them to know. Works every time, sadly....ignorance is true bliss.
    but not anymore.

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    1. Nobody goes to Reagan emptied the mental hospitals. Deinstitutionalization happened for a number of reasons - advances in drug treatments for bi-polar and other diseases,shifts in funding due to Medicare and Medicaid and a growing belief that the mentally ill needed treatment not just being locked away ( Titicut Follies, One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest ).

      It's been a failure largely with prison substituting for mental hospitals (Reagan did play a part in that). It has been an immense benefit for some such as those with Downs syndrome but largely we jut didn't want to spend the money necessary.

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    2. In other words, our "Disciplinary Society 2.0" upgraded to a "Society of Control 3.0".

      ...only nobody knows how to "control" crazy people without being considered "cruel". I believe that the "spikes" worked pretty efficiently, and that their owners were pretty effective at alienating the labour of the crazy homeless. It wasn't half bad for a "pay as you go" system.

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    3. And besides, aren't the homeless just being selfish and cruel by insisting on camping rent-free on the most valuable piece of public property in Venice, the beach?

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    4. DUCKY!! HILARIOUS "Nobody goes to Reagan emptied the mental hospitals." I hear this ALL the time, but you know better.

      EVERY LIBERAL I KNOW mentions Reagan two minutes after ANY homeless conversation. But, OK....live in your lib dream world; it's what got Biden elected and now, you too will find out what a huge mistake that was. Thanks a lot.

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    5. Joe, it's not the homeless insisting on destroying the beauty of California beaches. It's our City "Leaders"....By the way, there is more housing than people think downtown for homeless...but they won't go because they don't allow drugs or booze or prostitutes.
      Ducky, nobody said Reagan was right in closing any kind of help for homeless or ill.....but sometimes putting the financial health of a state or country comes before helping everyone, including some who will not help themselves, not just cannot help themselves. I wish Biden could learn that.

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  11. Well, we're not wanting to remove people "because it doesn't look good" Ms. Straw Man community activist. Otherwise, we'd complain about most of Lincoln Blvd. from here to the Marina (about 3 miles of ticky tacky). It's crime and sanitation. Yes, it's an eyesore too.

    I'm in a food buying club and pick up down in Venice every 2 weeks. I drive past the bike chop shops set up in the encampments. One thief nearly ran into my car as he skidded his stolen bike to his fence's tent. I've seriously recommended people do a drive through looking for their stolen bikes. One guy found what was left of his. These ain't the only crimes happening here.

    The inability to live within 'the rules' is a big issue. Years ago San Jose was stopped from clearing vagrants out of the parks at night until they had enough shelter beds. When they did, the clearances started. One vagrant activist interviewed still insisted on camping in the park. Why not go to the shelter? "Because I don't like their rules" (no booze, drugs, fighting, and curfew).

    The fix is more like when Cesar Milan helps a dog behavior problem, and it's the owner who has to change. The City is the one that has to change, to make the cost of flaunting the law and public safety more than vagrants want. Then we'll be down to the hard core. But they don't want to do that for reasons JC outlined.

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  12. Also, about 'permanent housing.' The road to housing usually starts with transition housing to which the city attaches lots of 'services.' They USED to require participation in drug programs as a condition of getting the housing. That changed about 2 years ago. Now it's "get them into housing then see if they'll go into rehab." Where's the incentive to that? I've talked to a non-drug case in transitional housing who spends as much time away from it as possible because "it's full of meth heads who prey on the rest of us."

    This one can be filed under "The City Needs to Change its Behavior" tab.

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  13. Probably just need to build a wall along the border between the United States and California.

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  14. Well, at least one good thing came out of the homeless invasion @ Venice Beach.

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