Person of Interest: Alan Harvey

A Seattle Economist on Fixing the City's Housing Crisis and What Trump Might Do to the Dollar

Comments

1
Trump's pledge to spend $1 trillion on infrastructure with absolutely no credible plan to pay for it is DOA. Congressional RepubliKKKans would have to do an incredible "we've always been at war with Eurasia/Eastasia" flipflop on deficit spending and the national debt.

Most likely we'll get the worst of all the choices: Massive tax cuts for the rich combined with enormous increases in military spending which detonates a death spiral of recession caused by surging interest rates and stagflationary hell for everyday Americans.
2
@1 - Hey, we spent trillions on the Iraq Invasion and Occupation, and we had no credible plan to pay for it either. Seems to have worked out. Anyway, we've always been at war with the Middle East/West Asia.

Personally, I don't think tax cuts + military spending is what causes recessions. I think it's money trying to find unrealistic investment opportunitites which hots up a particular market (like, you know, housing), and then the market correction comes, screws the last investors, and freezes up lending capital, which prevents new money from circulating.

Man, I really think we should get on this alternate/complementary currency thing. Call them "Seattle Salmons" or something. Make it a non-interest-bearing currency: make it Mutual Credit. Just make them able to purchasing food and rent (at least in part), and we'll get our economic revolution, or 'sanctuary'. As the global economic tides slosh around, we'll have our protected economic bay to smooth out the rough weather.

We should all be working for Economic Democracy.
3
@ 2, Unless the Federal Reserve agrees to monetize all that debt via a new round of QE, which is not unlikely even though they're pissing in the wind now from an economic growth perspective.

The problem is a lack of demand due to the fact that most Americans are broke as a motherfucker. We can't spend any more and we can't afford payments on even more debt, thus resulting in recession. Only an increase in wages and a corresponding reduction in inequality as a result of the multiplier effect from a massive infrastructure investment funded by increased taxes on the rich can restore a proper balance to the economy, and the anti-tax, anti-American, anti-everything RWNJs running the country will never allow that to happen.
4
Don't forget that Trump also wants to start a trade war with China (and presumably with Canada and Mexico if he ditches NAFTA). So, wages will remain stagnant AND costs will go up. Wheeeeeeeeeeee!!!!
5
"we spent trillions on the Iraq Invasion and Occupation, and we had no credible plan to pay for it either. Seems to have worked out. "

If you call a worldwide devastating financial crash "working out" -- you must have stuffed 2008 and the massive suffering it caused down the memory hole.

Millions lost their jobs, businesses, and homes.

It only "worked out" when a Democratic president and congress finally took steps to make it work out.

So by your measure we'll have to have another devastating recession and only when we get another Democratic administration will we stop bleeding.

And we won't get that as long as useful far left idiots vote for Greens and Libertarians.

6
@1
Deficits only matter to Republicans when a Democrat is in the White House
7
If the city decides to "freeze rents" then it's only fair to also freeze property taxes, sewer, water, garbage, electricity, gas and perhaps the costs of maintenance (plumbers, electricians, roofers, etc.) and the costs of materials too (pipes, wiring, siding, etc.). If property owners can't raise their rents to cover increases in these costs, then these costs also need to be frozen. That would be fair, right? And also, if the landlord has an adjustable rate mortgage on the rental property, then interest rates need to be frozen too. Right?
8
I'm honestly curious: is there any documentation to back up the assertion that there is enough foreign money going into high-end Seattle apartments to distort the market? I've seen the claim that some suburban housing is being bought up from buyers abroad, but I'd like to see some hard numbers on the claim related to apartments in the city as well. It may be out there, but I just haven't seen it yet.