The New York Times continues its coverage on shantytowns today, highlighting a Bushville in Fresno that has suddenly popped up. First of all, given that Los Angeles County has 70,000 homeless people and that number has remained durable for quite some time, I welcome the national media to the issue about the homeless but don’t necessarily think that because this new class puts up tents (they do the same on LA’s Skid Row, BTW) that somehow it’s novel. The recession clearly has exacerbated this problem and brought it to new areas in the state and the country, but that doesn’t mean homelessness didn’t exist before.
Second, our Governor is either America’s stupidest person or he thinks you are:
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said Wednesday that he has teamed up with Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson to help the homeless and has lobbied the president to speed the flow of federal dollars to address the problem […]
U.S. Rep. Doris Matsui, D-Sacramento, in February announced that the city and county of Sacramento each are in line to receive $2.4 million in stimulus money to prevent homelessness.
The money will be managed by the city-county Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency.
In addition, Proposition 63, the ballot measure voters approved in 2004 to provide mental health funding, will provide “a lot of help” for some of those living on the streets, the governor said.
That would be Prop. 63, the fund which the Governor and the legislature are trying to RAID through Prop. 1E, to the tune of $230 million a year diverted to other purposes. You can debate the pluses and minuses of that, but promising Prop. 63 funds to fight homelessness at the same time as running a campaign to take Prop. 63 funds away is either cruel or clueless.