American Feudalism Pt II
And while the assertion by the former Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper
that Russia hi-jacked the 2016 election by flipping tens of thousands of votes in three Rust Belt states is probably accurate, it doesn’t explain how those states got rusty in the first place and so vulnerable to Trump’s tropes about bringing back shiny steel.
Also evident of this crisis, nowhere is the Great Unraveling of America more evident than in the deepening crisis of housing affordability.
Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies
report last year, the growing wealth inequality and concentration is playing out in the landscape and increasingly shaping the nation in a kind of 21st century feudalism.
While trendy towns on the two coasts are seeing housing prices go up, they are flat or declining in places that voted for Trump in the Rust Belt. But even within states this kind of ‘Tale of Two Economies” is becoming more pronounced. “The disparities in price appreciation across and within markets adds concerns that entire metro-areas are becoming inaccessible to low and moderate income households,” wrote the Harvard researchers.
What’s being built are luxury homes and apartments, not housing that works for the growing cohort of working-class Americans that struggle from month to month to pay for shelter.
To make room for these luxury homes and apartments we are seeing foreclosures on the rise and continue to plague our community. Poorer neighborhoods as a manifestation of systemic racism continuing to play out. “So, the urban area has been cratered out. The zombie houses are everywhere,” Homeowners have been fighting foreclosure pro se in the courts since 2006. For many African-American homeowners their current foreclosure problems were the consequence of underlying predatory lending practices that go back decades.
“There was redlining long before there was the Great Recession,” . “And so, in the urban communities if you managed to get a house you paid a higher price. You paid a higher percentage on the mortgage. You got terms from the beginning, from the closing, where you were being gouged. So, you started out behind the eight-ball and you never really caught up. So, this took us over the edge and has left us just swimming out in the ocean. But we will survive. We are a people that have survived.
So, what is our solution for this ongoing problem, fighting the injustices can take a tremendous toll on our lives but that’s your only alternative. Each situation is different but similar in basic structure. Predator’s are out there preying on our sorrow and lack of knowledge in this system. Caution and patience following through with legal obligations should ease some consequences but in the end paying your responsibility or just letting go of a dream is our only recourse. You can always start over building towards secure financial health using new methods of acquiring wealth. One thing we cannot do is give up, the fight is worth suffering in the morning when the sunrises.