No Minister

California Screaming – Filth, Drugs and Poverty

with 3 comments

Humans have done well in California, building one of the world’s most advanced tech industries and growing rich in the process. At least up until the 1960’s it poured the resulting tax revenues into massive amounts of infrastructure in the form of cities, expressways, water systems and so forth.

This spirit was still evident in 1988 when the Los Angeles Times Magazine pub­lished a 25-year look ahead to the year 2013 and used this piece of cover art.

Wonderful vision isn’t it? More like a 1960’s view of the future than what I’d expect from the 1980’s, but then it was as much of a “Go Go” decade, Material Girls and all.

Instead, this is the reality of LA in the 2010’s and 2020’s. Homelessness and poverty on a scale never imagined in the state.

And don’t think that the housed, employed locals are all that isolated from this, with what The Atlantic magazine described accurately as the return of medieval diseases:

Infectious diseases—some that ravaged populations in the Middle Ages—are resurging in California and around the country, and are hitting homeless populations especially hard. Los Angeles recently experienced an outbreak of typhus—a disease spread by infected fleas on rats and other animals—in downtown streets. Officials briefly closed part of City Hall after reporting that rodents had invaded the building.

Typhus, in a “modern” major American city FFS. There’s not much information yet on the impact of Chinese Lung Rot on the LA and SF homeless populations, but with weakened immune systems because of drugs, poor hygiene, bad food, and all the other stuff that comes with living on the street, it’s hard to believe that the virus won’t hit them.

And then are incidents like this every day, as shown by this video of a deranged, homeless man punching a random woman in the head as she walks her little kid along a perfectly ordinary street in San Francisco.

David Thomas, who works the area as a security guard, told KPIX 5 it appears that the suspect was having some mental problems, which may have caused him to lash out at the woman. “Of course I would try to help the lady. But there’s a lot of people like that, who walk around like ghosts, not a care to the world,”.

Ghosts is probably the best description of these sad, hopeless people, but it could well apply to the useless Democrat politicians of San Francisco, LA and California, and their empty Words on homelessness:

Ten to 15 years ago, homelessness policymakers had vision to spare: they were ramping up their “campaign to end homelessness,” and Newsom, then mayor of San Francisco, participated energetically in that nationwide push. It wasn’t successful, but the “end homelessness” rhetoric has endured. In his speech this week, Newsom asserted—as if we’re still in 2004—“I don’t think homelessness can be solved; I know homelessness can be solved.” Bold applause lines and “make no small plans” promises long ago ceased to be inspiring—or even credible—for most people.

Newsom’s words did address mental health, which is one of the big problems and the one that has to be solved first to at least get these people into shelter – except that there are “Do-Gooders” in charge:

I’m not a sociologist, anthropologist, or field reporter. I’ve only taken care of homeless douchebags (and, to be fair, that insults the other 0.5%, to whom I offer my apologies) for a quarter of a century, …

People are homeless for several reasons, most of them intertwined like the trunk of a braided ficus tree.

1) They’re batshit crazy, in ways that, until the mid- to late-1960s, would have seen them happily locked up for life in appropriate facilities in perpetuity. No small number for violent behavior and poor impulse control.

2) The don’t take their psych meds for that, because those drugs make them feel “weird”. (Normal people call that feeling “sanity”, by no coincidence.)

3) They self-medicate with alcohol and drugs

And as he points out, homeless shelters have rules banning booze and dope – which the homeless don’t want to obey, naturally enough. It’s much easier to live on the streets where there are effectively no rules anymore:

… former San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon decriminalized anti-social behaviors – open-air drugging, urinating and pooping on the streets. He refused to enforce the law and, indeed, wrote Proposition 47 – passed by voters – that has made the homeless problem even worse.

Incredibly, Gascon is now the Los Angeles district attorney and shows every sign that he will pursue the same policies in that city. San Francisco celebrated his departure by electing one Chesa Boudin, raised by 1960’s Weather Underground terrorist leaders Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, who has vowed to go further than Gascon in ignoring “quality-of-life crimes” like “public camping, offering or soliciting sex, public urination, and blocking a sidewalk.”

No word on how he’ll deal with the homeless increasingly using SF’s BART rail system as a homeless shelter, which is interesting because it directly screws up the Left-Wing desire for mass public transport; BART loses 10 million riders in five years:

Last Friday at the Richmond Station parking garage, there were four elevators. One was broken, one had a large pool of vomit at the elevator entrance and inside, and on the sixth floor (top level), there was tons of pigeon poop in front of the elevator doors. So walk through vomit to get on the elevator and bird poop to get off. There was no agent in the booth, and no visible police or security. Separately, the double-tall pay gate made me feel like I was entering and exiting a prison.

That last comment perhaps points to the plan; make ordinary people feel like they’re in prison and they’ll commit to higher taxes and whatever other societal ideas that Far Lefters like Gascon and Boudin have. Is it any wonder that California homelessness and poverty has actually increased dramatically in the last twenty years, despite all the money spent:

However, after covering administrative costs and paying for those on the brink of becoming homeless, Oakland spends just $13 a day on each homeless person, while San Jose spends only $1 daily. About $36 a day is spent on each homeless person in San Francisco.

And in San Francisco that money is doled out by a bureaucracy with a $12 billion annual budget and 31,800 staff with average annual pay and benefit packages of $175,000. 

But while the truly homeless crash out on the street, the Middle-Class that has to co-exist with them are also getting squeezed to death by rising house prices and rents, courtesy of zoning regulations, building codes and NIMBYISM that has severely restricted house building. It’s not just general infrastructure that now takes decades to build. San Francisco is famous for that but surrounding cities are no different:

One of the strangest sights in California is the horde of trailers, ratty cars, and dilapidated Winnebagos parked throughout moralistic Menlo Park, Palo Alto, and Sunnyvale, juxtaposed with gleaming high-tech corporate campuses. The most empathetic and caring people in the world, as they remind us hourly, turn out to be pretty callous about the “losers” in their midst who live in mobile and makeshift quarters on the street to keep Silicon Valley humming.

The coders slaving away in the hopes of hitting the stock-option-tech-startup-jackpot not only live in Winebagos on the street but in cheap, crowded “hotels” explicitly set up like the university dorms they just graduated from. Then there’s Santa Monica:

Santa Monica, like the rest of the city, is a shell. As I wrote a few months ago120 stores were smashed and looted in the business district during the May/June Floyd riots. To this day, it’s a ghost town with plywood on nearly every window.

You know what else is everywhere? Homeless people. Not just glassy-eyed gutter punks lounging in decrepit tents. I mean ranting, fully naked zombies defecating and peeing on every corner. It’s been called Skid Row by the Sea for years, but today Skid Marks by the Sea is more accurate. 

(Side note: the median price of a home in Santa Monica is $3,750,000, making it the third most expensive ZIP code in America.) 

Plenty of money then and California has tried to take advantage of that with the highest income tax rate in the US, plus plenty of other taxes, none of which have any affect on the IT billionaires but which the Middle Class can only escape from on foot, further turning the state into a feudal one. As lifetime resident and historian Victor Hanson put it:

California has become a cruel and unusual state because callousness and narcissism were redefined as caring and compassion.

As can be seen by all that tax revenue having done nothing for the homeless and the poor except create or attract more of them to the state:

I’ll leave the last word to former homeless man, Thomas Wolf:

Wolf, who now works for the Salvation Army helping homeless people rebuild lives and has just been appointed to a specialist civic taskforce, sees untreated addiction as the root cause of the city’s problem. He says most people living on the streets are hooked on either drugs or drink.

‘If you see someone shouting at the wall, it is crystal meth, not mental illness – although meth might have destroyed their mind.’

Wolf claims that while the city distributes drug paraphernalia, he was never asked to quit or offered help. He says many users sell their monthly welfare $190 food stamps on receipt to go on a binge. And he wants to see generous welfare benefits – almost $600 a month in return for 12 hours of voluntary work – slashed…

Wolf believes that the decision by a state ballot six years ago to reclassify thefts of property below the value of $950 as misdemeanours has backfired badly, leading to a huge increase in shoplifting.

But what would lowly people like him know compared to the credentialed classes like Breed, and Newsom and the Far Left fanatics like Boudin and Gascon? Judging by actions they clearly could not care less, just like all other Californian Democrats, including especially their voters.

Written by Tom Hunter

February 8, 2021 at 6:00 am

3 Responses

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  1. How depressing Tom, all down to Donald John Trump in spite of the Democrats best efforts?.

    Gravedodger

    February 8, 2021 at 9:18 am

    • It’s been growing steadily worse for two decades now, but the fall is gaining speed, as evidenced by a story that appeared after I wrote this post:

      Let’s recap: While out on “supervised release” on a theft conviction, Lyons was arrested Dec. 6 driving under the influence in a stolen car. Within a month, however, he was back on the streets and arrested again for driving under the influence on Jan. 5. You might think that two DUI arrests in less than a month would be enough to put somebody in jail and keep them there, but this is California, where the “catch-and-release” policy turns criminals loose as soon as they’re arrested.

      Remember, this is the state that elected Kamala Harris to the U.S. Senate. All the sane people left California a long time ago, and the entire state is now basically an open-air lunatic asylum, with murderous psychopaths roaming around looking for victims to rob, rape or murder.

      Tom Hunter

      February 8, 2021 at 9:40 am

  2. And the hits just keep on coming….:

    Michelena, a member of the DA’s gang unit, told Judge Arnold the motion he just made is illegal, citing Section 1386 of California’s penal code: “The district attorney may not just on their own abandon a prosecution for a public offense.”

    He was echoing the arguments in his union’s lawsuit against Gascón. One of its key assertions is that a DA cannot move to dismiss enhancements in hundreds of cases all at once.

    To have a DA at war with his own unit is incredible, especially when you consider that there really should not be a lot of concern about extra prison time for gangbangers who killed two 15 year old boys because they thought they were part of a rival gang. But for Gascon it doesn’t matter. Emptying the prisons is the greater act of justice.

    And then people wonder where Andrew Little gets his ideas on “prison reform”.

    Tom Hunter

    February 9, 2021 at 6:50 pm


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