Land Lords: Left Wants 'Nation of Renters'

The latest target on the left's kill list is the American dream of homeownership. With housing prices skyrocketing to historic highs, liberal columnists are calling for America to "become a nation of renters," and for "a revision of the American dream of homeownership." These writers essentially argue that it is better for a few rich fat cat developers and investors to own most of the properties, while the majority of the public functions as transient renters moving from place to place.

Randal O'Toole, senior fellow at the CATO Institute, has written his own response to those who want America to become a land of renters. "This is a very negative trend," he tells KTRH.

O'Toole believes the left is doing this by design. "They want to force more people to live in multi-family housing rather than single-family housing, so they've driven up the cost of housing," he says.

"That's not good for America and it's not good for American wealth, because homeownership is a key to building wealth," he continues. "And trying to force people to live in small apartments instead of big houses because for some reason it's supposed to be more sustainable, I think is bad policy."

Fortunately, O'Toole doesn't believe the American dream of owning a family home is too far gone. "To get back to that dream, the states and cities that have attempted to restrict urban sprawl need to stop those efforts," he says.

To that end, O'Toole supports the Texas model of light zoning. "The main thing we need is lots of land where developers can build for the have that in Texas, because counties aren't allowed to zone in Texas," he says.

"Conversely, in California 95 percent of the land is off limits to development," he continues. "That is what has made housing so much more expensive in California than it is in Texas."

Photo: iStockphoto

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