Private Property: There Has Got to be a Better Way

Photo: Tract housing near Union, Kentucky from the air. Derek Jensen. Wikimedia.

If you are happy with a price of property you own, come on, you are only thinking about yourself.

The Fallacy of Ownership

Private property is a social arrangement to keep other off of a parcel as long as you contribute to society. The size of your parcel corresponds to how much you contribute. When you stop contributing, lose your job, you loose your parcel.

The rate that Americans own their homes fell in the first quarter of 2016 to the third lowest on record, another indication that worsening finances as well as changing preferences since the Great Recession are altering behavior. — Market Watch

Debt Scam

People are so programmed that they go along with slaving for most of their lives to pay an entity that just made the money up out of thin air to buy or build your home, aka a bank. They money to buy your home never existed, the banker just made it up on the keyboard and poof, you are a slave, a brilliant control system idea. Worse yet, you rent and at the end of 15 or 30 years you have nothing to show for making every rent payment and die broke. Bankers and lawyers should pay everyone’s rent and mortgage because they created the mess in the first place.

Inequity is an inherent problem of the private housing-for-money model. There can never be equity. One would argue that some contribute more to society than others so they should get the late side property. What happened to, “All men are crated equal”? Don’t get me started about how unequal education and opportunities are.

Another problem is your retirement gets tied up in your home so it’s hard to do anything altruistic like create a community. Everyone has to grasp their property tightly, again another control system thing.

Rental Scam

Ownership has become too expensive for most Americans. Rental unfair to the renters. Every rental should be converted to ownership overnight. Who gave people with more money like Donald Trump or Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) the right to own other people’s homes. People would argue that there would be no incentive to build apartment housing, they are wrong. Apartment builders would just shift to condo building.

The big deal for building or buying apartments is the revenue stream is sheltered by huge depreciation tax write offs the first several years. Apartments are frequently sold after the depreciation ends because the income is no longer sheltered. Apartments are not maintained well because there is little economic incentive to do so beyond building and buying them.

From a renter’s standpoint, you lose out because you are paying effectively what it would cost to own and you get no equity. Everyone should have the right to buy their apartment at the current rent as long as they keep the payments up no questions asked.

Damage of Private Property

Sure private property is a great way to keep people from fighting over homes and scraps of land and to get things built. The problem is that these dwellings are enormously consumptive and almost no one can build one on their own from resources on site.

If there were fewer of us and someone had a clue about how to design regenerative communities the landscape would not be trashed. Everyone should learn permaculture in elementary and middle school. Adults and future leaders would have a more holistic world view and we would have much better community designers.

We are nothing more than apes with lawn mowers, chains saws, tractors and oversized needs and egos. Since when have you seen a building code specifying passive solar homes to be south facing instead of street facing?

Developers cut land into as manny little pieces as possible to shoehorn people in. One of the greatest governmental conflicts of interest is developers and realtors taking over local planning commissions. It should be illegal to operative government for one’s private benefit.

Small lots and apartments damage the landscape, we cannot even see what natural homes for other species were once there. Watersheds are cut apart. Subdivisions look like circuit boards printed on the landscape. We think we are the only species on the planet. This is really a population problem at the root. We can’t keep driving everywhere. The suburbs without local food and economy will turn out to be the single largest wasted human investment in history.

Urban and Suburban housing are novel. Humanity has never lived in such dense population because there is no way to provide for one. Cities and towns rely and despoiling the countryside to sustain their needs. Economic systems, laws, trade agreements are setup to ensure resources are brought in from as far and wide as necessary. Resources in, garbage out. Rural peoples are forced for generations to log their forests, plow their prairies and pollute their water to sustain population centers.

Even home owner’s social skills are atrophied because everyone just lives in their little box and does not have to interact with other people. Modern community skills are being reduced to talking to each other with our thumbs.

Whats keeping it Together?

That is easy, no alternatives, monopoly land ownership, no free land, overly expensive housing, growing population, fear and force. You certainly cannot walk into your neighbors yard and setup a yurt, its “their property”. People cannot take land with them. All that can be done is to bury them in it when they pass.

Greed and insecurity really keep it going. All alternatives are taken away, there is not free land and the whole system is setup for industries to profit from housing, banks, builders, lumber, utilities and more.

Housing Revolution

People have to start tribing up and taking their futures into their own hands. It would be revolutionary if land were held in common and people built their own locally adapted dwelling mortgage free, adobe in the southwest, cob cottages in the pacific northwest, etc. Home should be built to last 500 or 5 years depending on the need. Heat with rocket mass heaters are exponentially more efficient than any other heating solution.

On our farm in Ashland, Oregon we live in a small community, have experimented with cob building, work trade, have tought permaculture and are visioning how to take it further.

The brilliance of the wigwam is that everyone is equal, everyone can build one and they are made from regenerative materials. There never was a homeless Naive American. We need affordable ecological housing, we can to do this, let’s get started.

Chuck Burr