With rampant inflation, an economy whose only baffling bragging right is that it gained back 80 percent of the jobs lost since the Biden administration began, and mortgage rates increasing the most since Jimmy Carter was president, calls are on to subsidize more housing for the poor.

It is an equity and equality mandate, proponents argue, but American Housing Survey data show otherwise. People are choosing to live in more expensive areas, even if the quality of living will be lower. Latino subsidized renters pay $110 more per month than white subsidized renters, while Black renters pay $75 more. That is racism among landlords, right? No, Blacks and Latinos want to live in larger cities where costs are higher. It is not a race issue as much as a cultural one. Some groups self-segregate in areas where people look like them, while the overall housing market is more diverse.

Writing in Socius, sociologists argue against the data.  They blame the 1968 Housing and Urban Development Act, which to their credit did ignore economic and cultural reality and blindly threw money at public housing. Is it clear that a giant influx of government spending given to political allied unions did not bring a boom in free market efficiency and innovation. It's not just bad economics, the authors argue that despite nearly all career federal government employees being Democrats, almost 90 percent, and 55 years in existence, HUD's subsidized housing is benefiting white people more.(1) 

All of those Democrats who control HUD are not racist, that data instead show that older white people move to areas where their money can go farther. Minorities are willing to sacrifice to remain near friends and family and their culture. There is nothing wrong with that, it is even laudable to place culture and friendship over money, but subsidizing them more is penalizing those who move to accommodate the income they have.

If you want to live in New York City, you can get subsidized housing but it will be low quality, that white sociologists in academia insisting the difference in quality of life is racist feels like political jingo-ism. 

But the argument that subsidized housing itself makes economic inequality greater is obvious. In the late 1990s, Democrats passed legislation that created an investigation if a bank turned down a minority for a mortgage. It set off a boom in housing at the low end, which inflated costs for the same people that Democrats said were being discriminated against.(2)

For the same money as a few years earlier, people were getting much lower quality houses. Since Blacks and Latinos were the groups banks wanted to help, they were the ones hurt by the bubble politicians created. They were the ones hurt most when the government-mandated bubble burst.

That is government control writ large, and no reason to create more of the same.


(1) That's certainly not the reputation of Democrats today. Yes, they fought a whole Civil War to keep black people enslaved, created Jim Crow laws, voted down the 1964 Civil Rights Act, and had Alabama Governor and KKK member George Wallace as the front-runner in the 1972 presidential election, but the mass switch to the Republican party in the south due to dislike for that hate-monger in 1972 made them change their ways. The last KKK member who was a nationally prominent Democrat, Bob Byrd, died in 2010 and demographers say that today 90% of Black voters back Democrats. Political experts wish they wouldn't. Latino votes are always in play because they are not in the bag for one party, which means both parties compete. Republicans don't bother to compete for Black votes and Democrats take them for granted.

(2) In 2005, both President George W. Bush and his Treasury Secretary said that the government-mandated housing boom was artificially inflating the economy. Democrats said Republicans were wrong, they just wanted an excuse not to create a higher minimum wage. In 2008, when the housing bubble burst as Republicans had predicted and the economy went into freefall, Democrats blamed...Bush.