The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Wall Street Says Bad Housing News Is Good News

Nov 23, 2009

New housing construction fell in October by more than 10%. The bad news follows four months of propaganda about how the economy was recovering because, during the warm months, there was a tiny increase in new construction. In reality, housing construction has been and continues to be at a very low level.

Facing this bad news, a journalist for the Wall Street Journal dared to write, “Housing starts fell: it’s actually a good thing.”

He explained there were more than 14 million vacant housing units; more than 11% of rental units were vacant; there is still an enormous supply of houses waiting to be sold. There is an additional “shadow” inventory, that is, houses taken off the market, not counted, because they cannot be sold.

While millions double up with friends and family, while homelessness grows, a capitalist commentator believes it’s a good thing that construction fell–because more homes would push down prices and profits!

An important need of society for homes for the homeless goes unmet and the economy is a disaster. But capitalism won’t build houses because it can’t make a profit.

What is more insane than celebrating such an upside down economic system?