Affordable. It has to be one of the most politically loaded words in American english. I was once again driving back from a location and listening to talk radio. This time, a more middle of the road channel. A caller was griping about "Affordable Housing". It made me think.
What she meant was "Housing in Great Areas That Someone Else Pays For Me". From a privatized point of view, she could get Daddy to pay for rent and thus make it "Affordable". She could become a kept woman to some big shot and trade her soul for "Affordable Housing" a la the Houstonian in the early 1980's. She could get a better job and make it "Affordable". My kind of approaches to affordability. She was a teacher, however... a high school teacher, and young and hip by the sound of her voice. She was lamenting a bad city council somewhere and how they did not focus enough on "Affordable Housing". It was clear she was not talking about the Free Market kind.
I remember moving to Houston in the early 1980's... boom days for oil. I was gonna make my mark. I sure liked the homes on River Oaks Blvd., but, alas, they weren't "Affordable". Living in the Warwick Towers or at 5000 Montrose, another cool high rise at the time was likewise not "Affordable". Geologist pay, though good, didn't allow me to live THAT luxuriously.
It was a fact of life that I was raised to not question. You got what you earned. I wasn't gonna live on River Oaks Blvd. anytime soon. Or if I was, I had better become a landman. These we were the flashbacks I had while listening to this chick, entrusted with our kids education, bitching about not being able to live in a really nice house in the really nice area of a booming city. The saddest part? I gurantee that some local politicians therabouts thinks that is a noble thing to work on... something they can "fix".
How does the politician "fix" it? To strip away all the marketing terms, he (it could be a she, but we are still in Texas) does it by confiscating the property of some individuals (usually described as Greedy) to give to someone else... and taking the credit for this largesse at the same time. Pretty dang "Affordable", huh?. Anything is affordable if you steal it. This isn't even a socialized solution where we create a net for the truly desititute. It takes from very few to give to some. Except... it ain't theft if the gummint does it. I need "Affordable Italian Furniture". "Affordable Mercedes Benz". What I really need is an "Affordable Drilling Contractor" to drill me an "Affordable Well" on some "Affordable Core Area Barnett Acreage" right about now. Know any politicians that are sensitive to MY needs?