September 23, 2011
Diamond on Shared Equity Housing
Michael Diamond (Georgetown) has posted Shared Equity Housing: Cultural Understanding and the Meaning of Ownership on SSRN. Here's the abstract:
In this paper I examine whether shared equity limitations that are sometimes applied to subsidized affordable housing creates for the owners of such housing a second class ownership status. I conclude that they do not. In support of this conclusion, I look at the meaning of property from both cultural and historical perspectives. I argue that property and ownership are culturally constructed concepts that are understood differently in different cultures and in the same culture over time. I examine the series of limitations that have been placed on property in industrial societies and argue that the limitation on equity is just another in a long list of limitations that society has imposed on ownership in favor of a supervening social good, in this case, the preservation of affordable housing for future generations of low-income homeowners.
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This analysis would benefit from a familiarity with the ideas of Henry George, which were widely known and discussed in America 100 years ago, but which seem to have fallen out of many curricula, though not from the textbooks.
You might start with "Progress and Poverty" or with a book of essays entitled "Social Problems." Both are available online. Though written 120+ years ago, both remain extremely relevant. Find links at wealthandwant.com.
I'm re-reading his later book, "The Science of Political Economy," and find it relevant for an explanation of the extent to which special interests might have played a role in the disappearance of George's ideas from most curricula. (Look around page 130.)
John Dewey wrote of him in 1927, 30 years after George's death, "The fact that Henry George has an ardent group of disciples who have a practical program for reform of taxation has tended to obscure from the recognition of students of social theory that his is one of the great names among the world's social philosophers. It would require less than the fingers of the two hands to enumerate those who from Plato down rank with him."
"No man, no graduate of a higher educational institution, has a right to regard himself as an educated man in social thought unless he has some first-hand acquaintance with the theoretical contribution of this great American thinker."
I encourage you to expand your horizons in this direction!
Posted by: LVTfan | Sep 23, 2011 7:33:33 AM