Friends Of “OO” Have A Point (Update)

Although I hasten to add it has nothing to do with “capitalism”.

Nevertheless, if the message that empty buildings are fair game resonates far and wide enough, I don’t think it’s going to matter what the police do.

The movement may be leaderless, but there is certainly intelligence behind occupying a building that was foreclosed upon – a building that housed a not for profit called the Traveler’s Aid Society, whose mission was to aid the homeless.


As an aside, now that things have turned scary in Oakland, CNN has nothing on the Occupation for the first time in weeks.  Such news is not to be disseminated, apparently.

UpdateThings are getting sticky in DC, too.  (h/t Radley Balko)




Filed under financial crisis

2 responses to “Friends Of “OO” Have A Point (Update)

  1. Zarepheth

    Occupy Oakland has a very good point to make. An economic system that allows private ownership of land and natural resources will eventually cause the problem of empty houses while simultaneously people go without homes.

    The private owners refuse to let others use the land or natural resources unless they pay the owner whatever the owner demands. Because there is no cost to the owner in refusing access, they can get whatever they want – or let it sit empty if they don’t get it.

    A better system would put the land and natural resources into the hands of the community and require that anyone making a claim on those resources lease them from the community at full market rent. That would add a cost to those holding properties empty, encouraging them to either return it to the community or lower the rent so people would willingly pay to use it. Likewise with leaseholds for lumbering, drilling for oil and so forth.


    • They have a good point that something is terribly wrong when there are many homeless people and many empty homes. But this is – perhaps counter-intuitively – not the result of property rights but rather the encroachment upon property rights that has already taken place.

      It is insufficiently appreciated that mortgaging a property, whether when it is “purchased” or thereafter, confers superior legal rights to the property to the lender. At bottom, a mortgaged property is not owned by its so-called owner.

      Yet for generations, people have been under the impression that they owned their homes even when there were mortgages on them. The foreclosure crisis is simply revealing in a very unpleasant fashion what had been true all along: a mortgagor is, at best, a secondary owner of his property. He has misunderstood, and greatly overestimated his property rights. His real property rights were not like he thought they were at all.

      The solution is not to take away his property rights but to restore them. His and everyone else’s if possible.

      Long time no see, Z. How are you?


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