A Civilization That Drowns In Crap…

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

A city that can’t stop its own residents from pooping in the streets is uncivilized, regardless of how many cool apps they develop to track the city’s decline.
Lack of affordable housing is caused entirely by liberal policies: rent vouchers, zoning and subdivision regulations, public housing subsidies, housing inspectors. 
The author has absolutely no idea how the real world works.  It’s telling that her editor approved this piece, and the magazine published it, and subscribers didn’t burn down the offices in derision.  None of them have a clue, either.  They only know Trump is obsessed with poop.  He’s a Big Poopie Head.  He’s the reason San Francisco is sliding toward catastrophe.

There are a lot of “hallmarks of civilization” – but one of the things that makes advanced, healthy civilization possible is the orderly removal of, um, waste. A society that forgets that might not realize exactly why civilization is becoming less…civil in so many vital ways.

13 thoughts on “A Civilization That Drowns In Crap…

  1. One of the hallmarks of contemporary Socialists is that when a Socialist is reminded of the past failures of Socialism they will immediately reaspond “But that wasn’t REAL Socialism.” By the same token contemporary Democrats will not take blame for their failures and instead seek to blame someone, something anyone other than themselves. It is frightully Orwellian.

  2. Lack of affordable housing is caused entirely by liberal policies

    In SF’s case; no.
    SF is surrounded on 3 sides by water. It is 100% built out unless they decide to fill in the parks.

    They tried doing some land fill, but learned that liquefaction is a thing (damn you Gaia!).

    The SF bay area has lots of young, rich people living in it. When you’re young, rich, and have the choice of paying $1m for a three bdrm ranch in San Leandro, or $3m for a lux condo in the city, it’s a no-brainer.

    SF has always had more bums than other cities, but they used to be confined to the skid row South of Market area. But when more rich people wanted to live in SF, skid row got a hip acronym; SOMA….it was all over for the bums after that.

    I don’t think there are more bums than usual, and bums shit in the street almost everywhere. The problem is the bums are not clearing out fast enough to suit the rich kids.

  3. Agreed that San Fran is built out, so probably not the best place to discuss affordable housing. Further out in the Valley, sure–and let’s discuss politicians who bring businesses to city center without adequate transportation.

    (and let’s discuss the vandals that did a lot of the modern architecture in San Fran….maybe the bums are just trying to improve the aesthetics of the neighborhood?)

    The problem here is that people are being allowed to live like that village of “Bring out your dead” from Monty Python, and as NW notes, cholera and plague will tend to result from that. More and more, I think that we’ve got to start saying to people “you do not have a right to live like this.” Make it a little bit more compassionate than the old forced confinement in dismal mental hospitals, but yeesh.

    The picture that comes to mind for me is what I saw in August in Santa Cruz; a pile of rancid feces a whole four feet from the toilet and IN THE F***** STALL. Sorry, but if you’re there and can’t be bothered to put it in the toilet, is it really safe for you to be out in public?

  4. “More and more, I think that we’ve got to start saying to people “you do not have a right to live like this.” Make it a little bit more compassionate than the old forced confinement in dismal mental hospitals, but yeesh.”

    Couldn’t agree with bikebubba more. I have known mentally ill people who chose homelessness instead of living in an apartment, provided for free, by the VA. And homeless patients who social workers work hard with, getting them set up with services and rooms at facilities, only to have these patients, who now have some sort of medical problem on top of mental illness refuse and go back to the streets. There is a point when these people who refuse treatment and choose to live like this become menaces to society. They are menaces through spreading disease, through their drug addiction and everything that comes with drug addiction, and they can even turn violent. The creep that threw the kid at the MOA was a homeless, mentally ill person that no one wanted to deal with. We do need to get to a point where we say enough and say it is not even compassionate to allow people to live like this.

  5. Interesting comments from both bikebubba and mjb003, but to me they raise the question, so what do we do with them? The homeless. I mean, it sounds OK to say “[m]ake it a little bit more compassionate than the old forced confinement in dismal mental hospitals” or “[w]e do need to get to a point where we say enough and say it is not even compassionate to allow people to live like this“, but the devil’s in the details. Got any details?

    The reason I ask is that regardless of how you couch your compassion, the homeless *will* be institutionalized in mental hospitals. The buildings and the employees of these hospitals, chosen from the lowest bidders and presumably run by the government, will ensure that these institutions become dismal. It is, what it is.

    I’m not criticizing either of your comments, I’m merely asking if there is something else that I don’t see.

  6. Actually, these sorts of people: “a pile of rancid feces a whole four feet from the toilet and IN THE F***** STALL” will also ensure that the mental hospitals become dismal.

  7. SF is boxed in by their own politics, and that *is* a leftist problem.

    Most of the bums are brown pipul; you can’t do what is necessary to fix the problem, which is to round them up and put them into treatment. Those that don’t like that choice get to go to bum reservations.

  8. I don’t believe everything I read in Wikipedia, but this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/San_Francisco_housing_shortage
    article I believe accurately describes the causes for the San Francisco housing shortage. Hint, it’s not capitalism other than the fact that the lucrative Silicon Valley corporations have created a massive draw of people to the area. It’s not “socialism” either, no matter how the term is defined. A lot of it is NIMBYism, and the disregard for the consequences of it.

  9. jdm- you are correct that there aren’t any easy fixes. In a few of the cases I know personally, a court appointed conservator would have been a good fix. One person, who was a public menace, had a shifty family member as his conservator. The family member had a criminal history, was ripping off this person he was responsible for. But the mentally ill person didn’t care because despite being ripped off, he saw it as the price if freedom- freedom from being forced to follow up with medical care that caused him to have more normal thoughts (he thought the medicine made him slow). Freedom from having to keep his finances in check. (He was good at petty theft and no one pressed charges because they felt sorry for him). Just trying to get a court appointed responsible conservator for a man who was an obvious risk to himself and others was impossible, which it shouldn’t have been. Lots of things were reported on him, including the VA being well aware that he chose living on the street over a sponsored apartment and his record of petty theft.

    I have thought back and forth about what is best for people with mental illness and those with addiction. I understand the free to choose lifestyle, but freedom has got to end if it encroaches on other people’s freedoms, if you become a danger to society.

    I have thought about designating communities for that population to do whatever they want if they stay there. Yeah, the mental hospitals, if we go back to them, would not be humane, but the people that we’re talking about aren’t really living humanely now, either.

    Probably the simplest solution right now is just use the money to make it easier, more efficient, faster, to get a court appointed, responsible conservator for the people that have burned out their family or have proven they cannot find one on their own.

  10. JDM, no argument that keeping mental hospitals “reasonably dismal” is a HUGE challenge, same as with foster care and the like. I’m thinking that the partial solution is to see what can be done to help families and churches (etc.) help them just enough so that they fall into private systems instead of public.

    Word picture; I’m working with a guy who took a psychological self-exam and scored through the roof–obviously I am in deeper than I can swim. But can I direct him to a good counselor/psychiatrist in the private sector who will help keep him afloat while he works so he never gets to that point? Can I give him some basic guidance and help so that he can continue to be at least halfway functional?

    Maybe I can do that.

  11. Thanks, you guys. Interesting.

    It occurs to me that perhaps the dismalness (dismality?) of old-school mental hospitals was the secret, so to speak, to their success. The fear of being sent to one combined with that need for freedom, would cause these people to escape to the “wilderness”, like those hobo villages in the past. Not a good life, but perhaps the best under the circumstances. I don’t know.

  12. Might be something to that, but on the flip side, if we truly believe that the goal of any social welfare system, public or private, ought to be to enable people to rejoin society, not to provide for those people for life. If it is too dismal, that might be impaired.

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