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The elite 0.2%

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Don Surber

The elite 0.2%

Congress spends $15,000 a year per homeless person

SEP 18, 2023


Like NFL referee Alex Kemp, “I’m talking to America here, excuse me.”

Kane at Citizen Free Press linked an LA Times story with one of his cut-to-the-chase headlines: “Los Angeles builds homeless tent city, at cost of $44,000 per tent.”

His subheadline said, “And 24/7 free onsite food catering, at cost of $3 million.”

That was not the LA Times headline, which read, “Can licensed tent villages ease California’s homelessness epidemic? This nonprofit thinks so.”

The nonprofit in question — Urban Alchemy — is using other people’s money (yours) to pursue its hare-brained idea of replacing pop-up tents with $44,000 ones.

The LA Times story was a puff piece that began, “The rows of white canvas cabin tents newly erected in an out-of-the-way quarter of Culver City, along the bank of Ballona Creek, have the ambiance of an Army field base.

“Miles to the east in South Los Angeles, more modest camping tents — like one might buy at a sporting goods store — line the parking lot of the shuttered Lincoln Theater, evoking something more like a Boy Scout jamboree.

“Though dissimilar in style, the two tent villages have a common purpose: They’re the easiest step from the deprivations and hazards of the street to a place where meals are served three times daily and guards are on duty around the clock.

“The camps are managed by Urban Alchemy, the San Francisco-based nonprofit that has rapidly grown into a multimillion-dollar street services enterprise and embodies an elastic philosophy of shelter. Urban Alchemy calls them “safe sleep villages.”

So, the homeless get to live in bigger tents while Urban Alchemy gets another fat city grant. Taking care of the homeless is quite lucrative. Down in Paragraph 20, the LA Times story reported these tents cost $44,000.

Further down in the story, the LA Times reported on just how safe the safe sleep villages are to people who are not homeless.

It said, “Linda Mora, manager of a check cashing business, said residents of the camp were causing chaos.

“‘They come in, they yell, they scream,’ said Mora, echoing several other shop workers on a section of Central Avenue where city trash cans were overflowing and several people lay or sat on the sidewalk or in alleys. ‘People don’t feel safe inside.’”

“Mora said customers had complained of being robbed as they left.”

The story also said, “In addition to that, the village has an operating budget of $3 million annually, mostly for 24-hour staffing and meals catered by Everytable.”

And that, dear reader, is the heart of the homeless epidemic, as the press so carelessly calls the situation. There is no epidemic. Fewer than 1 in 500 Americans are homeless. HUD says there are 582,642 homeless people in America.

In the decades since Jimmy Carter left the White House, the media has bombarded Americans with propaganda about the homeless. Initially it was a way to embarrass his replacement, Ronald Reagan. There were 400,000 homeless in 1987. The rise is but 5,073 per year on average.

But the media declares over and over again, without any attribution, that anyone can be homeless. Think about it. If only 1 in 500 Americans is homeless, then that is a pretty elite group. Being homeless in a capitalist society is nearly impossible.

In fact, Americans are 40 times more likely to be a millionaire than homeless. The nation has 22 million millionaires — that’s 8.8% of the adult population. Millionaires are much more epidemic than homelessness.

Capitalism rocks.

But helping the homeless is a lucrative business for nonprofits — which is a clever name for a corporation that pays no federal income tax. The LA Times said Urban Alchemy was a startup in 2018 that within 3 years had revenues of $51 million.

Success in the homeless industry is measured by dollars, not effectiveness.

Indeed, the Biden administration bragged about $8.732 billion on the homeless. That is $15,000 a person. No wonder homelessness continues. It is a goose laying golden eggs for the SJW crowd.

But that is just for starters. States and local governments also throw money at this problem that churches once handled. Fox reported, “Blue state’s $143 million homeless program got less than a thousand people housed. Now governor wants more.”

That would be Washington state which is run by Governor Jay Inslee. Its spending is $143,000 per homeless person it helped.

The story said, “Washington has the fourth-largest homeless population in the country (25,211), exceeded only by California, New York and Florida, according to 2022 Housing and Urban Development estimates.”

The state has 10 times as many illegal aliens, but Inslee wants to focus attention on 0.3% of his state’s population (which is above the national average of 0.2%) rather than the address a problem 10 times worse that threatens the nation’s economy, security and sovereignty.

The more money a state or city spends on homelessness the more homeless the state attracts, which is why Washington is 4th in the homeless but 13th in overall population. The more homeless a state attracts, the easier it is to convince the public to spend even more money on the homeless.

New York City spends just under $40,000 a year on each of its 61,000 homeless people.

That is more than 10% of the nation’s homeless.

Now the city is bitching about spending $40,000 a head on illegal aliens. It is a sanctuary city until illegal aliens actually show up.

A Daily Mail story showed being homeless ain’t so bad.

The London paper reported, “A homeless camp in Denver has a decked out open-air bar that also rents out tents for prostitution.

“The pop-up tavern has been set up on the sidewalk at 23rd and Champa streets which the city’s growing homeless population has turned into an encampment.

“It features lounge chairs and umbrellas and one of the the tents looks to have been transformed into a streetside bar with reports of alcohol being sold.

“The camp has been decorated with couches, rugs and tables and dozens of liquor bottles have been proudly put on display.

“Denver Police are investigating it following ‘numerous complaints’ the encampment has been blocking the sidewalk and it is being used for prostitution.”

Am I a bad guy for thinking that $44,000 per tent would be better spent on what the homeless really want: hookers and booze?

But as the LA Times story showed, the money goes to SJWs and not the homeless. And the SJWs are working to keep that money going.

Washington, DC, set up the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness.

It said, “Jeff Olivet is the executive director of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH). He has worked to prevent and end homelessness for more than 25 years as a street outreach worker, case manager, coalition builder, researcher, and trainer. He is the founder of Jo Consulting, co-founder of Racial Equity Partners, and from 2010 to 2018, he served as CEO of C4 Innovations.

“Throughout his career, he has worked extensively in the areas of homelessness and housing, health and behavioral health, HIV, education, and organizational development. Jeff has been principal investigator on multiple research studies funded by private foundations and the National Institutes of Health. Jeff is deeply committed to social justice, racial equity, gender equality, and inclusion for all. He has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Alabama and a master’s degree from Boston College.”

As Chico Esquela said of baseball in those old SNL skits, homelessness has been berry, berry good to Jeff Olivet.

Olivet and USICH have a plan for homelessness.

It said, “All In sets an ambitious goal to reduce homelessness 25% by 2025 and encourages state and local governments to use the plan as a blueprint for developing their own strategic plans and for setting their own ambitious goals for 2025.

“The plan is built around six pillars: three foundations—equity, data and evidence, and collaboration—and three solutions—housing and supports, crisis response, and prevention. Within each pillar are strategies and actions that lay the groundwork for a future when no one experiences homelessness—not even for one night.”

I didn’t say they had a plan to end homelessness. I said they had a plan for it. They set an unattainable (and ridiculous) goal of not having one person in America have to live outside for even one night. An unachievable goal means your bureaucracy will live into eternity.

Their plan is to keep homelessness in the public’s eye to keep the spending machine going.

And why not? The job prospects for SJWs aren’t many. Setting up $44,000 tents for homeless people to replace their $100 popup tents is a pretty good way to make a living.

Plus the LA Times will do a puff piece on you so you can show your mom what a great humanitarian you are.