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Housing the Homeless

January 11, 2021

We have lots of media attention recently to the problem of housing the homeless. Local nonprofits are studying the issue with seminars and research reports. But nearly all these efforts focus on the same tired solutions, more government actions, and more government spending. For those of us who believe in market forces and the good intentions of most people, the solution is clear: It is the government that is obstructing the solution. We have far too many building restrictions and zoning restrictions. The government just needs to get out of the way.

Henry David Thoreau said it best: Government never of itself furthered any enterprise, but by the alacrity with which it got out of its way. The character inherent in the American people has done all that has been accomplished; and it would have done more if the government had not sometimes got in its way.

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