“Incoherent” is derived from the Latin, in- meaning not and cohaerere, literally, “sticking together”. Sen. Sanders’s and Rep. Ocasio-Cortez’s plan for public housing as reported in the Washington Post is incoherent:

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Bernie Sanders said Thursday they plan to introduce legislation to give the country’s public housing units an energy-efficiency overhaul, their first attempt at turning the Green New Deal’s broad framework into specific policy.

The bill, dubbed the Green New Deal for Public Housing Act, would use seven grant programs to upgrade housing units into carbon-neutral communities with organic grocery stores, on-site child care and community gardens. Residents of public housing would be given preference in hiring to renovate those units.

After energy production and transportation, the third largest emitter of carbon dioxide is in the production of cement and the amount of cement that would be required to implement their plan would offset a good deal if not all of the benefit they hope to achieve.

It would probably be more efficient to use the billions that would be required for their public housing plan to enforce our immigration laws. Despite it being explicitly against the law a shockingly large number of those living in public housing are immigrants and even illegal immigrants, as noted by the Center for Immigration Studies:

Most Americans are probably shocked to learn that illegal immigrants can get public housing benefits. Indeed, such assistance is prohibited by the Housing and Community Development Act of 1980.

Carson’s proposal would provide relief to low-income households headed by American citizens who now cannot get public housing due to a short supply.

However, successive administrations have allowed households that include at least one American citizen – often a U.S.-born child – to receive a pro-rated subsidy, which obviously benefits the entire family, including the illegal residents.

According to a HUD study, about 25,000 households that include illegal immigrants are now living in public housing. About 55,000 children who are in the U.S. legally live in those households.

Some states have openly allowed illegal immigrants to live in public housing. For example, President Barack Obama’s Kenyan-born aunt, Zeituni Onyango, lived in a public housing unit in Boston for years after her first asylum application was rejected in 2004. She was ordered to leave the U.S. but refused. She was then granted asylum in 2010 and died in 2014.

“Ask your system,” Onyango said when questioned about her public housing by a local reporter. “I didn’t create it or vote for it. Go and ask your system.”

Additionally, public housing suffers greatly from the “tragedy of the commons”. That is illustrated by the lessons of Pruitt-Igoe (total lifespan: 20 years), Cabrini Green (total lifespan in final form: 30 years), and the Robert Taylor Homes (lifespan: 40 years).

10 comments… add one
  • Jimbino Link

    To ease the load on the taxpayer, we should just put a stop to all the breeding, starting with elimination of publicly supported child-care, education, and perinatal care and give precedence in housing to the child-free.

  • steve Link

    Public housing is nowhere near a priority. If they want to address climate change do it with research or higher return projects we need anyway like updating our electrical grid.

    It is interesting that the anti-immigrant thinks that only 2% of our public housing units have an illegal immigrant in the household.


  • Greyshambler Link

    Re illegal immigration, the American voters have spoken. Trump was elected by actual voters, not bots or Russians.
    The inside Washington Resistance organized immediately to block enforcement of border crossing and ICE apprehensions.
    This is where we stand until events change momentum. Nov. 2020?
    Wouldn’t be surprised if Trump hammers away on the economy while pointing out that this an “open borders” election, which it is. The last chance to keep the America you knew for your grandchildren.

  • Is the CIS anti-immigrant or anti-illegal immigration? They’re typically pretty rigorous with their numbers.

    The last chance to keep the America you knew for your grandchildren.

    It’s already too late and I don’t even aspire to that. The America I knew had racially segregated bathrooms, restaurants, and hotels in a third of it, restrictive convenants, and routine beatings of blacks in a lot of it. We are enormously better now than we were 50, 60, 70 years ago.

    But IMO mass immigration from Mexico and Central America has resulted in our racial progress ending, actually going in reverse. Blacks have a much harder time getting decent jobs now than they did 40 years ago. The entry level jobs they were taking to get started are far fewer and now solidly occupied by Mexicans and Central Americans with employers that use thinly veiled language for anti-black racism.

  • If they want to address climate change do it with research or higher return projects we need anyway like updating our electrical grid.

    Practically the only support they’d get for that is the IBEW.

  • Greyshambler Link

    I don’t remember segregation, wasn’t there. I came of age about 1970, the USA I remember was more free, safer, with lower crime and murder unthinkable. Now it’s dismissed as just “poppin some dude”. We’ll never get back there, cat’s out of the bag. But we don’t have to become Sonora or Brazil. Don’t have to, but that’s inevitable if we stay this course.
    And as to the topic, throwing money at the projects carbon footprint will do nothing to improve the people doing time there, or their lot. Naive.

  • the USA I remember was more free, safer

    While still far from a Golden Age IMO that was a better time. 90% of the wealth was in the hands of 90% of the people. Ordinary people, white or black, could get decent jobs. There was a feeling that things were getting better and would continue to do so.

    throwing money at the projects carbon footprint will do nothing to improve the people doing time there, or their lot.

    After about a week the community gardens will become shooting galleries. How long before the organic grocery stores fold due to lack of business?

  • Greyshambler Link

    Free childcare would be popular, but unmanageable.

  • steve Link

    The murder rates in 1970 were much higher than they are now, they just didnt get as much publicity. The rates for many crimes are down since then with the overall violent crime rate about the same. If you go back to the 50s and early 60s, then overall crime is lower, but homicides would be about the same. It is this false memory of an America that did not exist which influences a lot of conservative beliefs.

    The evidence for segregation was everywhere, you just chose to not see it. It didnt affect you.

    Dave- The CIS has always been careful to slant its numbers so that they make immigration look as bad as possible. They leave out data or emphasize data in ways that somehow always manage to make immigration look bad. For example, when looking at the costs of immigrants they look only at the costs of welfare programs. They do not look at the income provided to Medicare and Social Security. They also make errors. Dont we all? Yet, their errors always seem to go in one direction. I honestly dont know who would be considered neutral on the issue, but generally pro-immigration CATO is critical of their methods, among others. Their founder, Tanton, was pretty dedicated to the idea of keeping hispanics in particular out of the US, legal or illegal.


  • Greyshambler Link

    You accidentally deflected from our current free-for- all,dog eat dog system of open borders to Immigration, which would imply rules, limits and enforcement. I know you didn’t mean to do that.
    I truly saw nothing of segregation until I was older. In the rural area where I grew up, there were no other races. At 18, I moved to the Capital City, where I found the few A-Americans there to be angry and violent.

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