Have you noticed the Mc Mansions and luxury houses are showing up on page one of the newspapers, both the on-line version as well as the print edition:
North Shore Mansion With Lakeshore Frontage Features 2 Indoor pools, 8 Bedrooms And 8 Baths, Elevators, Surround Sound Theaters, 10,000 Square Feet, Maids Quarters, 5 Car Attached Garage On Private Lake…Asking 5 Million.
Real estate listings masquerading as bona fide news stories; a clever marketing tool or snobbery, you decide, but the simple fact is there is no market for such houses in working class areas and among working people, unless one wins the lottery, so what is really going on here.
Enter the cult of wealth and celebrity worship, where anyone who wants to can live vicariously through others. After all, if you can’t have it, you may as well fantasize about it.
Did you know Kim Kardashian has 33.5 million twitter followers ? Did you also know that the likelihood of ever being able to own that 5 million dollar luxury mansion is almost zero ?
But hope springs eternal, or so we have been told. With enough hard work and planning, you, too, can own one of these American status symbols. Just keep working, cutting those coupons and keep a positive attitude, and don’t ever give up on the power of positive ( magical) thinking.
Magical thinking meets the cold hard truth, and it’s not a pretty picture.
The cold hard truth is that, for many people, even the cost of a modest 2 bedroom apartment has become out of reach, and with an aging population dependent on SSI or a meager pension, this housing crisis will only get worse. It is not going to disappear or get better by ignoring the truth:
We live in a society where The Golden Rule reigns, and more is better. He or she who has the gold, makes the rules. The concept of an upward mobile society does not include in it’s narrative small affordable houses and people barely able to make ends meet.
Small conflicts with ” more is better ” and we will have none of that.
Affordable conflicts with the idea the housing should be a luxury reserved for only those who qualify and…
Housing is way too vague and should be clearly defined as being a 1600+ square foot living space within 4 walls and a roof. Anything less will devalue our own property and we will have none of that.
Housing is a human right and necessity, like food and clothing, but has instead for many become a luxury, reserved for those with perfect credit and a large paycheck. This is wrong and must stop. Our fellow Americans, many of whom are old and living in abject poverty, are being thrown into the streets while many more are ending their own lives. There are families with small children living in homeless shelters because they could not afford the 1800+/month rent on their wages or their credit scores were less than ideal.
This is a national disgrace. The high cost of housing is destroying lives.
Enter the cult of wealth worship where if you are rich, you are to be idealized, glorified and emulated because you are good and have achieved The American Dream, and, who knows, maybe you will someday have your own reality TV show.
If, on the other hand, you are a low wage earner, a struggling senior citizen living from check to check, you are essentially scorned and dis-enfranchised. You are to be shunned, ridiculed and ignored, and you deserve your lot in life and homelessness because you have only yourself to blame for not having goals. The only reality TV show you will ever have are the news headlines announcing yet another suicide or eviction while the viewers are grateful it’s nobody they know as they promptly change the channel.
America needs affordable housing. Small single occupancy houses or apartments, communities of small affordable houses retrofitted for our disabled citizens. Small houses under 200 square feet powered with safe clean renewable energy will provide security and shelter for those economically dis-enfranchised by the growing cult of wealth worship. Here are a few examples:
Being wealthy does not automatically equate to being a good person, and not having wealth does not make you a criminal or bad person. Housing is a human requirement and there are viable alternatives to the McMansions and luxury estates, as well as the obscene rents being demanded.