May 15, 2022

"I live in Los Angeles. Everyday I witness filth and disease laden encampments. What I see with my own eyes are people living in squalor..."

"... who are either drug addicted or mentally ill. Los Angeles does not have an affordable housing problem nearly as much as a mental health and drug addiction crisis. The status quo is not acceptable. It is hardly humane to enable people to suffer in illness and addiction as if it is somehow that’s a life style choice. Local residents and businesses are totally fed up. Governor Newsom’s CARE court approach is worth a try, along with a new mayor who actually is committed to solving the root causes of the problem."

And:

"At this point, I’m beyond caring what type of housing or treatment or support the tent camping homeless get (as long as it’s compassionate, not abusive). It’s simply long past time to insist that sidewalks, parks, beaches be returned to the general public, for ordinary use. No more camping, period."

Those are the 2 highest-rated comments on a Washington Post column titled "Forcing homeless people into treatment can backfire. What about a firm nudge? California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s proposed Care Courts have set off a debate about civil rights and human needs." It's by Neil Gong and Alex V. Barnard,  "sociologists who have studied California’s public mental health system."

59 comments:

Yancey Ward said...

They will camp where the government allows them to camp. We continue to pretend this isn't true.

Iman said...

How about the wants and needs of the taxpayer who lives by the rules. Doesn’t he or she deserve to live without the filth, disease and the eyesore that presents itself without respite.

gilbar said...

maybe, Arrest people that are illegally "camping".. Cash Bail.. Prison sentences.

They need a roof over their heads? They need medical care? They can't get those on their own?
Prison Can Provide!
If they Don't Want to go to prison, they can Go and Get Jobs

BUMBLE BEE said...

They gotta want to quit the shit, and it usually takes more than three tries. Don't talk to academics/politicians, talk to addiction therapist/counsellors.

Jupiter said...

"At this point, I’m beyond caring what type of housing or treatment or support the tent camping homeless get (as long as it’s compassionate, not abusive)."

Where can you get a compassionate bulldozer?

wendybar said...

Coming to a city near you!! Think it's bad now? Just wait. The inflation will cause more to lose everything....

Achilles said...

Yancey Ward said...

They will camp where the government allows them to camp. We continue to pretend this isn't true.

Change allows to wants.

They need voters to keep the sham going. Voters they know will need their vote "harvested."

boatbuilder said...

Highest rated comment: "Lets now do what those evil, racist, conservative bastards did, and told us to do, but lets do it with "compassion" so that nobody could ever think that we that we might admit that those evil, racist, conservative bastards might have been right in the first place."

Wince said...

Sobering sights I've seen in the City of Angels
Have all been one rude awakening that was due to me... in heaven.


City of Angels (1987)

Heaven, is this heaven where we are?
See them walking, if you dare, if you call that walking.
Stumble, stagger, fall and drag themselves along the streets of heaven.

Where is the blessed table to feed all who hunger on earth,
Welcomed and seated each one joyfully served?
See them walking, if you dare, if you call that walking.
Stumble, stagger, fall and drag themselves along the streets of heaven.

Where is the halo that should glow 'round your face,
And where are the wings that should grow from your shoulder blades?
Show them to me.

Sobering sights I've seen in the City of Angels
Have all been one rude awakening that was due to me in heaven.

There would have been heavenly music I was convinced before.
A host of the dearly to meet me with Hosannas sung at the door,
But these are sobering sights I've seen in the City of Angels
Have all been one rude awakening that was dues to me in heaven.
In this city of fallen angels.

rhhardin said...

Mnemonic CATO
40% Crazy
30% Addicts
20% Tramps (lifestyle choice)
10% Out of luck

for the homeless.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

I live in Boulder.

Same thing. Tho probably not as vast on the scale.

rhhardin said...

Erving Goffman's _Asylums_, about the days when you could be committed, goes into the coping mechanisms that everybody adopts, inmates and staff alike. Enjoyable book, what sociology should be at its best. It was considerably more social than homeless life, apparently.

Rabel said...

"sociologists who have studied California’s public mental health system."

AKA

Two children a couple of years out of grad school.

retail lawyer said...

20 years ago, when Newsom was mayor of San Francisco, and fucking his best friends wife, he promised to end homelessness in 10 years. How did that work out? SF spends $1 Billion per year on bums, and has more bums than ever.

Mary E. Glynn said...

Gee, maybe a "winner take all" society, where who you know matters more than what you know, isn't the ticket to peaceful living after all.
the
"As for me and mine, we will serve the Lord."

Funny how all you agnostics like living in the places Christians live. Then, when your policies run those places into holes in the ground, you want to the police to arrest society's "losers" to protect your "successes". lolol

Maybe change the policies that let you "win" at the expense of the middle clsss. It's a lack of housing problem that drives people into poverty. That's where the homeless come from. The rich with drug habits and mental illness just have homes with doors that close so you don't see them. Arresting all the poor homeless people and giving them housing in jails and prison ain't happenin'.

Maybe some of you non-workers just have too much for your own good? Maybe, share the wealth, like Christians do? Care for your neighbors and take care of your communities before it gets that bad? Yes you can. Respect life. It's about much more than abortion. Don't you know?

retail lawyer said...

I read the article. It is about helping the homeless. I don't care, and eventually the problem will be so bad you won't either. I worked in downtown SF among them, they are not nice people, they do not engender sympathy. Do not let them ruin civilized spaces.

retail lawyer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
retail lawyer said...

Can of Cheese: How do the homeless survive the harsh winter in Boulder?

Readering said...

Prison is expensive.

iowan2 said...

The word is 'incentives' All respond to incentives.

Learn the word and reap the rewards, or suffer the consequences.

reader said...

This article is from May 2021 but it is still a big problem.

https://abcnews.go.com/Health/wireStory/number-damaging-fires-los-angeles-homeless-camps-grows-77679790

LOS ANGELES -- Fires linked to homeless tents and camps are raising concerns in Los Angeles, where flames claimed seven lives last year and caused tens of millions of dollars in damage to nearby businesses, according to a newspaper report.

In the three years since the city's Fire Department began classifying them, the number of blazes related to homelessness has nearly tripled, the Los Angeles Times reported Thursday. In the first quarter of 2021, they occurred at a rate of 24 a day, making up 54% of all fires the department responded to.

Robert Marshall said...

"Your honor, we will be presenting the expert testimony of Mr. Gong and Mr. Bernard, two sociologists who have studied California’s public mental health system."

"Objection, your honor! Assumes facts not in evidence: that California even has a public mental health system."

"Objection sustained. Who's your next witness, Counselor?"

I live just a mile or two from what used to be called the Georgia Mental Health Institute, on property which once was the estate of Asa Candler, Jr., son of Mr. Coca-Cola, and also the grounds of his private zoo (later donated to the City of Atlanta and moved to Grant Park.) At least the zoo animals found somewhere supportive to settle, unlike the mental inmates released into chaos and homelessness. Places for the confinement and treatment of people who cannot look out for themselves and endanger others, are needed, despite Mr. Kesey's take-down in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

The Cracker Emcee Refulgent said...

Surrendering public spaces is always a dumbass idea. Hobo jungles were on the edge of town for a reason. Vagrancy laws existed for a reason. If you won’t defend something, kiss it goodbye.

FullMoon said...

Two weeks in County, and physical addiction is cured. Some gonna stay that way, repeaters need less to get high. Win/Win.

tim in vermont said...

Couple I know, huge liberals, just went there. I kept my mouth shut before they went, because there are people who claim it’s all right wing noise. They were shocked when they got there.

n.n said...

Diversity [dogma], social progress, immigration reform, Green environmentalism, transnational sanctions, Obamacares and collateral damage.

Fred Drinkwater said...

But government IS doing something about it.
Case in point: Austin, TX, that liberal enclave.
Encampments were explicitly allowed by statute, including where they would interfere with homeowners and businesses.
With the sole exception of the plaza surrounding City Hall.
Because that place was important, see?
At the time, I described this as "Corrupt collusion between the local legislature and the local dominant business."
However, here in Silicon Valley, the encampments are growing everywhere. The biggest is actually only a couple blocks from the County offices complex.

Michael K said...

What you subsidize you get more of. There is no mystery about this except why the politicians are so stupid not to see this.

Michael said...

Read "San Fransicko" by Michael Shellenberger, and support him for Governor.

Mike (MJB Wolf) said...

What system? There’s nothing for them to study.

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

retail lawyer said...

Can of Cheese: How do the homeless survive the harsh winter in Boulder?

Migrate to Tucson. I have no clue how they make the trip, but every winter the parks down there are full of them.

Bunkypotatohead said...

One person's filth and squalor is another person's vibrant urban culture. If you don't like it there, move someplace where people don't behave like that.
White flight never ends.

Dude1394 said...

If they aren't being placed in mental hospitals, then I don't want to hear about it. I could support them actually getting help, but not subsidizing their addictions.

Tina Trent said...

When I first watched The Walking Dead, I didn't know it was a zombie show. Its first episode is set in the depopulated Georgia Mental Health Institute, the often dangerous Grant Park, "The Grady" Hospital, and in front of the insane downtown branch of the public library, which is full of homeless junkies.

I literally thought the show was going to be a complicated metaphor for Atlanta's homeless problems, and the way the zombies walked represented tardive dyskinesia.

Watching the news from California, it's at all possible that I was right.

wendybar said...

But, but, but...it's a UTOPIA!!! This is it!! This is the Progressive Utopia the left keeps promising us. Open your eyes and realize, THIS is what the Progressives want America to look like.

wendybar said...

My sister in law lives in San Francisco. She was SHOCKED that they were closing the Walgreens down her street. I don't know why, because crime is so bad there, they have had their car broken into multiple times. They are so shocked that crime is so bad there, yet they don't believe WHY it is happening. Still blaming white supremacists that are hiding behind every bush there making the criminals do what they do....

Jefferson's Revenge said...

Joe Rogans interview with Michael Shellenberger on this is brilliant.

Rusty said...

wendybar
At my daughters graduation in Laguna a couple of years ago I was impressed by the police presence. I thought it was for traffic control. No. It was to keep the homeless out of the school grounds. Like Huns they would come down from the hills and steal anything not nailed down. It used to be nice and touristy. Now there are homeless on every street corner and alleyway.

iowan2 said...

We had a trip planned to California, then Covid hit. Got most of our money back. Hand of God I guess,I will not be a lesser person for not going. We went back in 2015, the sleeping on the sidewalks was eye opening.

To me the problem is breakdown to the family and govt stepping in to fill that void. A task the govt is only capable of making things worse. There are far too many safety nets, that let family off the hook. That's a moral hook. But that to is the result of the breakdown of family.

hawkeyedjb said...

"SF spends $1 Billion per year on bums, and has more bums than ever."

It's a miracle! SF demands more bums, and market supplies them.

hawkeyedjb said...

Several commenters to that article noted that, although California is the largest and wealthiest state, with a super-majority Democrat legislature, the homeless problem is caused by... Republicans, and other states.

hawkeyedjb said...

In other shocking news, the USA spends $40 billion per year on beer, and has more beer than ever.

Alison said...

If you are a California voter, check out Michael Shellenberger. I have seen him on numerous podcasts and he is very impressive. His book "San Fransicko" addresses the homeless issue and how to solve it.

Shellenberger Campaign

Anthony said...

Michael K said...
What you subsidize you get more of. There is no mystery about this except why the politicians are so stupid not to see this.


They see that perfectly well which is why they do it. It's a manufactured crisis that allows them to spend more money on 'solving' the problem, which they have no intent on doing.

I managed to escape from Seattle about 4 years ago. I couldn't walk a block downtown without passing at least one tent next to the sidewalk. You could drive 20 miles along I5 and never be out of sight of a camp.

It's intentional.

PM said...

In SF, they're called unhoused - and that, to City officials, is the only issue. As J's Revenge notes, Shellenberger offers a sharp, clear-eyed view in unfortunately-named book.

CJ said...

Very late comment here, but this is a situation I have real knowledge about from living in a large west coast metro area with thousands of people living on the streets. "Drug addicted" and "mentally ill" are not exclusive categories. In the urban area where I work, very close to 100% of the people living on the street are chronic drug users. The drugs are (1) fentanyl and its cousin carfentanil and (2) methamphetamine. They come from China and Mexico and are distributed by criminal syndicates.

While I personally believe that high housing costs and the offshoring of jobs have played a role in creating this mess, again, all or very nearly all of the people sleeping outside are chronic fentanyl and meth users. I know this from interacting with them directly and talking to people working in the various social services that deal with them, and talking to the local police and EMTs. This is first-hand knowledge, not relayed media feed.

Lars Porsena said...

".. new mayor who actually is committed to solving the root causes of the problem." Yes, of course, 'root problems'.

hawkeyedjb said...

"It's a manufactured crisis that allows them to spend more money on 'solving' the problem, which they have no intent on doing."

Someone else mentioned Michael Shellenberger. He understands the multi-billion dollar homeless industry and the reasons for its continued growth and power. In the quest for market share, San Francisco is leading but others are working to catch up. Shellenberger (and the industry) understand that homeless business is not a zero-sum enterprise; both San Francisco and Los Angeles can simultaneously increase the number of bums by demanding more of them. And that demand is stimulated by the endless resource called Taxpayer Dollars.

mikee said...

For goodness' sake, never let Newsome and his cronies see Soylent Green.

Mark from 401st MP (PW) said...

The reason these people live in squalor and filth is that most addicts are willing to put up w/filth & squalor as long as the high can be had. I understand this on an intimate level b/c I *almost* am willing to do so. Almost.

As long as the pain level of life is lower than the cost of the high nothing will change. A certain percentage of the addicts would deliberately shoot up w/a hotshot and suicide if the city ever really made the drugs hard to get.

For those who are still salvageable the only solution is to remove the encampments, get rid of the open-air drug market, and make the addiction painful. Make it hard- like the rest of America. Get rid of the damn incentives!!! the current environment in California is so cruel it could only be the result of deliberate indifference bordering on hostility . Not just for the addicted but for the citizens who have to tolerate this bullshit.

When being high is harder than getting sober- most will choose to get sober. Those who love the high so much that they’ll pay any price are a lost cause but they’re also a vanishingly small minority of addicts who will OD eventually anyway. Or die from the myriad health problems that being a junkie brings.

Personally I’d like to see all drugs legalized; a large percentage of addicts could live their lives just fine if they could buy drugs at a drug store, at a reasonable price, would hold down some kind of job if it let them get high.

But the current mishmash of “it’s illegal- but we’ll ignore the law- which means the only supply is from criminal cartels- which means it’s impossible to have a normal life *AND* be an addict- while letting people camp on sidewalks and shit in the streets amidst rising crime- is the worst possible permutation. Of course the socialists are fine with it.

Either enforce the law and make being an addict painful- or get off the pot and give people a *legal* way to get high and live a decent life. But the current situation could only be allowed by people who hate our most vulnerable.

Which, to be clear, absolutely described socialists and California Democrats.

takirks said...

None of this happened by accident.

Go back and look at the course of events that have conspired to rob us of our right to a livable environment. Note who was behind it; the same parties that "de-institutionalized" the mentally ill and made drug addiction an acceptable lifestyle were also the same parties that crippled the law enforcement system to deal with petty crime and major larceny.

The raw fact is, they make money off our misery. The fact that the legal system doesn't work merely makes them richer; more money goes into lawyers, who write bad laws and refuse to enforce existing ones. It's a vicious circle. They don't want sensibly organized civil life, where you predictably get punished for transgressions against others; that doesn't make them any money. So, they write bad law, get it through the legislatures that they all control because "lawyer" is the number-one profession for politicians, and then they refuse to enforce what bad laws they do have. It's anarcho-tyranny in action, and they thrive on it.

Stop and analyze this crap from a behavioral standpoint: What do the criminals experience? Do they receive correctives from their environment? Oh, hell no... The judges let them off, the cops can't keep them under control, and we all suffer because these people are essentially dysfunctional sociopaths who never had their behavior effectively modified by the almighty "system". There's a guy in my county that the cops know of; list of offenses for burglaries and thefts as long as your arm. The courts keep letting him out; nothing works. Eventually, he's going to cross the wrong person at the wrong time, and someone is going to kill him--At which point, they'll be the ones punished. Never mind the multiple and manifest failures of the "system" in correcting this deviant criminal's behavior, they're going to throw the book at whoever finally snaps and takes actions into their own hands.

Vigilantism is going to be coming back, with a vengeance. When the system breaks down, and ceases to be an effective option for most people, they'll take actions on their own. And, you'll see a bunch of really bad, really ugly things happen. And, of course, the law will go after the average citizen for taking the law into their own hands, because that's always easier than actually catching real criminals. A fellow could get hurt, doing that...

For those of you in the oblivious seats, this is how and why a civilization runs down: A failure to uphold standards and maintain decent civic life. When you see walls with broken glass go up in your neighborhoods, don't be real surprised. You'll also be seeing a lot of people taking matters into their own hands, using violence. People will get hurt, and the actual responsible parties will never be blamed, because they weren't directly involved. But, they set the conditions for the destruction of civic life and security, with malice aforethought. Defund the police? LOL... In a couple of years, they're going to be begging to increase funding exponentially, but it won't do a damn bit of good. Nobody will want to be a cop involved in cleaning this mess up. You want to see the future for most of urban America? Look at Seattle and Portland. I think it's a safe bet that neither city will get back its civic health any time this century; Detroit is actually a best-case scenario for both of them. Worst-case? LOL... Mogadishu. Utter lawlessness, factions fighting over the remains. It'll be Mad Max in the rain.

And, you know precisely who you can thank for that, assuming you're not deaf, dumb, and blind.

hawkeyedjb said...

"...the law will go after the average citizen for taking the law into their own hands, because that's always easier than actually catching real criminals..."

There you have the logic of gun control. No politician that I know of has EVER proposed anything that would hinder the lifestyle of criminals; all gun control efforts are aimed at inconveniencing the law-abiding because they're a much easier target. And it's certainly easier to tax the middle class and let addicts shit in the street than to do anything useful about the homeless.

Gcraw said...

RE: How do Homeless survive winter in Boulder. Most find a way to move south, Tucson, AZ, is a favored destination.

Brown Hornet said...

One man’s safety net is another man’s hammock. Some policies just ask to be abused.

HMS Defiant said...

The Channel Islands are just sitting there empty. Move these people out there. Be rigorous about no unsanctioned contact(no drug supply) evaluate and remove as they finish withdrawal after a year.

Robert Cook said...

"But, but, but...it's a UTOPIA!!! This is it!! This is the Progressive Utopia the left keeps promising us. Open your eyes and realize, THIS is what the Progressives want America to look like."

Uh,no. This is the capitalist hell that leftists warn of, a dog eat dog world where money rules and the winners win and the losers fucking lose.

PM said...

Mark from 401st:
Interesting take to get addicts off the street: Legalize fentanyl or drug of choice.
"...if they could buy drugs at a drug store, at a reasonable price, (addicts) would hold down some kind of job if it let them get high."
Okay. But business owners who let addicts get high on the job may as well let employees work while they're drunk. What kind of job would it have to be? And why would other employees who show up with a measure of self-control - the ones who have to go outside and down the street to smoke a cigarette - put up with it?

Robert Cook said...

"...the law will go after the average citizen for taking the law into their own hands, because that's always easier than actually catching real criminals..."

Aren't citizens who "take the law into their hands" criminals?

takirks said...

"Aren't citizens who "take the law into their hands" criminals?"

You call the cops on the guy squatting in the alley behind your house, who defecates on the street, steals your property, accosts you as you go about your life, and makes your law-abiding life miserable. The law does nothing, because the people administering it do not care about your life, but they care about his "right" to squat and make your life a hellscape.

The cops do nothing. What recourse does the homeowner have? Who is the criminal, here? The homeowner, or the "system" which refuses to enforce the very basics of its own rules on that "homeless person"?

Raw fact is that what is criminal is, unfortunately, a relative thing. What society deems criminal in one age may be the norm in another. Yesterday, vagrancy was a crime. Defecating in public was a crime. Accosting and harassing a "normal productive citizen" was a crime. Today, the crime is taking any action against that vagrant. Apparently.

The view of what is criminal changes, and what I'm warning you about is that where juries convict people for "abusing" the homeless now, in a relatively short timespan, that could well change again. Nuisance can easily become "criminal nuisance", and be dealt with as it was in days of yore.

The idiot class is rapidly convincing the normies out there that they're incapable of dealing with reality, that their "humanistic" ideals are out of sync with reality, and that they're positively dangerous to normal society. Don't be terribly surprised when that recoils on the luvvies who think they rule the world, these days.

I'm actually rather surprised at how much people have complacently come to put up with, and how they'll just accept the varied and sundry impositions put on them by the various authorities. I can't help but think that when the worm finally does turn, it's going to turn over with a vengeance that Shai-hulud would find "excessive...".