Saturday, March 1, 2014

Unfinished Business (part 3) - Urban Planning, Building Booms, and the creation of Modern Day Slums

It's amusing that the media will always talk about the "fear of the growing power of Big Governments" when in fact, it's the growing power of the Private Sector since 2001, colluding with politicians in the World Governments that has occurred (and is still happening presently).  All the collusion is done in order for the Government to do what the Private Sector wants done.  Pointing to the government's corruption, ineptness, and lack of resolve by the media hides the fact that behind the scenes it's the private sector who is manipulating the economy in order for the government to fail and for the masses to have no one to turn to but themselves and the private sector.

The masses are being stretched thin to the point of breaking and this is done by design.  When you reject the belief in God, when you reject your government, when you reject your family and friends, and you solely depend on the individual to succeed, it only works for so long.  It only works as long as the individual is successful.  It only works as long as the individual is financially stable enough to be an individual and exist without depending on anyone or anything else.  This is because individualism depends on the individual succeeding.  Individualism's whole identity is centered around individual success and since his whole identity depends on it, once the individual succumbs to the outside forces that always exist in every day reality (that he doesn't want to pay attention to due to the illusion that egoism and individualism created), he has no one to turn to.  The individual at that moment is lost and broken, disillusioned and depressed.  This is what our manufactured, manipulated, controlled, and illusionary societies have led us to since the end of the Cold War.

The marketed and manufactured image of  individual happiness and success as the "be-all, end-all" model of success, achievement, and purpose of life is starting to wear off as the economy falters.  The strengthening of the Mental Health Sector, the growing Prison sector, and the growing success of Big Pharma simultaneously -while at the same time the erosion in the belief and success of individuals due to a faltering and weakening economy is a designed formula that destroys society and individuals bit-by-bit

Presently, in many First World countries, there exists an over abundance of foreign investment.  An over abundance into any one country and into any one region in such concentrated areas as the construction sector (especially in the housing boom and the condo boom since 2000) is paving a way for the creation of modern day slums.  Just as it did in the past in the Third World when their housing booms popped up overnight after Colonialism ended, the effects of the housing boom have yet to be felt in the First World.  They have yet to be felt by those running to buy property or by those who have invested into these construction projects.  This is due to the fact that markets overheat and native resident of that country are unable to afford the property or land that is up for grabs (without going deep into debt).  Once foreign investment dries up and the overheated markets are devalued, the government and banks then sell the property for dirt cheap to whoever wants to buy it.  Usually the bidders are either private companies or the lower middle class and poor since the rich and upper middle class want nothing to do with those that are lower than them on the social standing of society (unless they can profit from them).  Without opportunities for upward social mobility, newly created neighborhoods stagnate over time. This is how a modern day slum is created out of thin air.

Surrounded by service sector jobs and minimum wage paying jobs
-those that inhabit these areas do their best to live pay check by pay check while still providing for their families.  Since all the housing and jobs will be concentrated in one area, it will force people who live out in the fringes (where jobs are scarce and manufacturing jobs are moving overseas presently) to move to these newly created areas.  For now, Toronto for example is a "Crane City".  Everywhere you look presently you see Cranes building condos, houses, and commercial areas.  In many of these places, they will become modern day slums because the building boom pace presently is unsustainable and will slow down with deep ramifications for Torontonians who will have to face congestion and competition that they are not used to (but is the reality for the Third World).

Though urban planning in an area or region by governments have been successful in the past, it has also failed to avoid overcrowding and congestion due to an instant population boom without the infrastructure in place. Heavy amounts of garbage have been created as well as heavy traffic congestion and traffic gridlock.  Meanwhile there is a lack of infrastructure in hospitals, transportation, and in schools in order to deal with the population explosions.  Lack of money being infused into the infrastructure enables the problems to stay in place until the economy itself stagnates.  Though the government will invest and allow construction projects to start up, the governments will never have enough money to finish these construction projects without more money being borrowed from either the tax payer or the private sector. 

The benefits of being wealthy and influential inside of the private sector and when working with the government is that you can invest in a project and start it up, then afterwards ransom the government for more money in order to complete the project therefore footing the bill to the tax payer (ex: the T.T.C and doing dual projects of revitalization and extension but not fixing older issues with the track system in place).  Therefore,  the city is left with the problem of needing money for both things simultaneously:
(a) you need money to expand and revitalize
(b) you need money to do repairs
This enables the private sector to be able to charge the government and tax payers for it in mid-project. When you're wealthy and influential, this amounts to a “smart business move” and “smart investing”. For everyone else, it looks absolutely criminal and absurd.  However, this is reality.  Citizens are trapped between "back room" business deals by private investors and the government with very little choice in the matter.

“As democracy ebbs, Americans retreat into private cocoons, feeling helpless to make a difference.  In a democracy, civic participation and the belief in one's ability to contribute to the common good is the most important guarantor of public morality. When that belief fades, so too does the vision of the common good itself"

"Inflation is theft pure and simple. What you thought you saved for in the past can't buy what you hoped for in the future. And that is how the state robs you without you even knowing it"

No comments:

Post a Comment