Wednesday , April 14 2021
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One hundred years of solitude

Summary:
Rarely does one see such unambiguous good news as this: The Berkeley City Council has unanimously voted to become the first Bay Area city to end single-family zoning. . . . Berkeley was the first city in the country to enact single-family zoning more than 100 years ago. Opponents of single-family zoning say it was used to exclude people of color from moving into certain neighborhoods. Who wins? 1.  Conservatives that favor local control of zoning decisions. 2.  Conservatives that favor deregulation and free markets. 3.  Progressives worried about housing affordability for the poor and minorities. 4.  Urbanists worried that suburbia creates isolated, atomistic people, unconnected to their neighbors. 5.  Environmentalists worried about urban sprawl. Congratulations

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Rarely does one see such unambiguous good news as this:

The Berkeley City Council has unanimously voted to become the first Bay Area city to end single-family zoning. . . .

Berkeley was the first city in the country to enact single-family zoning more than 100 years ago.

Opponents of single-family zoning say it was used to exclude people of color from moving into certain neighborhoods.

Who wins?

1.  Conservatives that favor local control of zoning decisions.

2.  Conservatives that favor deregulation and free markets.

3.  Progressives worried about housing affordability for the poor and minorities.

4.  Urbanists worried that suburbia creates isolated, atomistic people, unconnected to their neighbors.

5.  Environmentalists worried about urban sprawl.

Congratulations to Berkeley for ending 100 years of solitude.

Scott Sumner
Scott B. Sumner is Research Fellow at the Independent Institute, the Director of the Program on Monetary Policy at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University and an economist who teaches at Bentley University in Waltham, Massachusetts. His economics blog, The Money Illusion, popularized the idea of nominal GDP targeting, which says that the Fed should target nominal GDP—i.e., real GDP growth plus the rate of inflation—to better "induce the correct level of business investment". In May 2012, Chicago Fed President Charles L. Evans became the first sitting member of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) to endorse the idea.

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