• Third Sector Radio USA

    While cities are exacerbating the problem with removal policies, much of the blame also falls to the federal government’s failure to take the problem seriously. The federal government alone has the resources to make an impact on such large humanitarian issues (or at least it did until the so-called “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act”).

    For the last couple of years, libertarians posing as Republicans have been whittling away at the federal government and its responsibilities to the working folk who keep it robust. This means the public goods theory of the nonprofit sector has risen in prominence. However, voluntary organizations that provide collective goods (Weisbrod, 1975) have insufficient resources, even collectively, and especially now that they are becoming more and more dependent on the pet projects of the mega-wealthy. What’s the response to be? Perhaps the best response is to continue providing as much as possible, while becoming more engaged civically than ever (and if you know you’re nonprofit history in the U.S., you will know that voluntary organizations used to be highly politically active). Civic engagement organizing by nonprofits begins at the community level and requires the COURAGE to be mission-driven, not self-maximizing.

  • Earl D.

    California is actually a poor example to study with respect to the rest of the nation. CA cities and state government spend an enormous sum on homeless services and anti-poverty measures. But collectively, by throttling residential construction to a rate below natural population growth have ensured that someone has to not have a home to live in. I.e. quite literally there are more people than there are houses and residents have voted again and again to not allow housing to be built. In the rest of the nation homelessness is largely a product of poverty and can be easily alleviated using a variety of traditional anti-poverty programs from income supplementation, to housing vouchers. Again, in CA those things can not work because there are simply fewer units than the aggregate population and no means to allow more to be built.