Think about what we are doing to ourselves. We are literally devolving into a culture that is incapable of taking care of itself. This is happening in housing too. We have the technology to build better homes, more affordably, than anyone in history.

But, in places like coastal California housing is more expensive than it has ever been in history. And, by that, I mean that even the poorest sedentary people who ever lived could construct housing with a few months' effort, using animal skins, or sod, etc.

In coastal California, today, using price/income ratios, it takes the equivalent of several years of effort to build a house. A Californian cannot choose to spend the amount of money/effort on a home that has been normal for centuries.

That is because governments in California have made it illegal to do things which are just basic human activities that people with far fewer resources have managed for all time.

If you try to make a home like 99% of humans in history did in coastal California, agents of the state will tear it down or detain you. That is the only reason. It's just one thing. Our collective will is being wielded to prevent you from meeting a basic human need.

Now, we're starting to do this to child rearing. Could anything be more fundamentally human? Again, for millennia, mothers, fathers, family, friends, and neighbors have shared child care responsibilities in a thousand different ways.

Now, we are starting to put in mechanisms to stop this from happening. Again, simply performing a basic human function might earn you a visit from the authorities. How much further could we possibly devolve if we are making ourselves incapable of taking care of our children?
When people find that they can't get care for their children, just like the people today that can't find shelter in California, what do you think the rhetoric will be about that? Will people react by saying it should be legal to live your life?

Or will they react by bemoaning how hard it is for a poor mother to afford child care in a system rigged against her?
But, they won't say it is rigged against her because the state won't allow her to either provide or seek child care in ways she deems appropriate.

Instead, there will be more rules. More state control.

Where does it stop?

It takes a (properly accredited) village.

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More from @KAErdmann

7 Aug
Scott Sumner and I have a new paper on housing, monetary policy, and the Great Recession.
Tl,dr: The stuff you thought was settled fact is wrong. There is a lot to unlearn about the recession in order to learn what needs to be learned.

Myth: The Fed needed to stop a housing bubble. The reason the crisis was so deep was because the Fed waited too long and let the bubble get out of hand.
Reality: Rising home prices are an international phenomenon. Popping the “bubble” made us worse off.
Myth: Artificially low interest rates overheated the economy.
Reality 1: Interest rates are a terrible way to measure monetary policy. During the housing boom, the Fed was pushing up against natural downward rate trends.
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