This week marks the 40th anniversary of the Staggers Rail Act of 1980, which deregulated American freight…
CFIF on Twitter CFIF on YouTube
Happy 40th to the Staggers Rail Act, Which Deregulated and Saved the U.S. Rail Industry

This week marks the 40th anniversary of the Staggers Rail Act of 1980, which deregulated American freight rail and saved it from looming oblivion.

At the time of passage, the U.S. economy muddled along amid ongoing malaise, and our rail industry teetered due to decades of overly bureaucratic sclerosis.  Many other domestic U.S. industries had disappeared, and our railroads faced the same fate.  But by passing the Staggers Rail Act, Congress restored a deregulatory approach that in the 1980s allowed other U.S. industries to thrive.  No longer would government determine what services railroads could offer, their rates or their routes, instead restoring greater authority to the railroads themselves based upon cost-efficiency.

Today, U.S. rail flourishes even amid the coronavirus pandemic…[more]

October 13, 2020 • 11:09 PM

Liberty Update

CFIFs latest news, commentary and alerts delivered to your inbox.
Jester's CourtroomLegal tales stranger than stranger than fiction: Ridiculous and sometimes funny lawsuits plaguing our courts.
Dems Will Make Homelessness Worse Print
By Betsy McCaughey
Wednesday, September 25 2019
Get rid of the regulations and homelessness would fall 40% in Los Angeles, 54% in San Francisco.

If Democrats capture the White House in 2020, your own neighborhood is likely to look like the disease-ridden tent slums taking over Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren insists it's wrong to ban living on the streets and in public parks. Bernie Sanders is calling for a 3% cap on annual rent hikes, the kind of poisonous rent control law that deters new housing construction and worsens homelessness.

As for Joe Biden, expect him to stick by the Obama administration's policy that living on the street is a civil right. Never mind the harm that street dwellers inflict on the public's health and safety or the suffering they endure themselves.

In downtown Los Angeles' business district, many of the county's 60,000 homeless people live in tents and parked cars, defecating in buckets left on street corners for public sanitation workers to empty. Needles litter the sidewalks. Rats scamper by.

Murders are up 13% and rapes up 61% in one year in these homeless camps. Typhus, a medieval disease carried by fleas, threatens not just the homeless but also cops on the beat there and anyone who walks by.

President Donald Trump says "the people of Los Angeles are fed up." The Washington Post bashes Trump for daring to "stigmatize" the homeless. Advocates say complaining neighbors need "an immersion course" to increase their empathy.

Sorry. Trump's right. What's needed is an abrupt change from the delusional policies exacerbating homelessness.

Last week, Trump's Council of Economic Advisers identified the biggest culprit: rent control laws that discourage the real estate industry from building or refurbishing affordable spaces. Get rid of the regulations and homelessness would fall 40% in Los Angeles, 54% in San Francisco.

Listen up, New York. The president's report also estimates that abolishing rent regulations here would slash homelessness by 23%. Tragically, New York Democrats  rent control ideologues  are propelling us in the opposite direction. Gov. Andrew Cuomo just signed legislation that will block vacant apartments from being deregulated and make it harder for building owners to recoup repair costs or evict hellish tenants. Expect the housing crisis to worsen.

Unlike in California, in New York, shelter is a legal right, guaranteed by the courts. The city provides temporary housing for nearly all the homeless in shelters, apartments and even Holiday Inns. The cost to taxpayers is a whopping $2.14 billion a year.

New York subway riders, including kids going to school, also feel the brunt of homelessness. Vagrants defecate and sprawl out in the cars, making the ride gross.

What can a president do? Trump can't change local and state laws, but federal departments such as Housing and Urban Development can offer incentives to eliminate overregulation.

Sanders wants the opposite. Though rent control destroyed housing markets in New York and Los Angeles, Sanders wants to spread it across the nation. His plan is legally dubious and economically a disaster.

Sanders and Warren would also spend hundreds of billions more on housing on the false assumption that housing shortages are the only cause of homelessness. In truth, it will persist as long as the drug-addicted and mentally ill fend for themselves. "You can't have all your faculties if you're living on the street," says former NYC Police Commissioner Ray Kelly. Democrats ignore the role of addiction and mental illness in the spreading of tent slums.

The Obama administration made it worse by siding with vagrants when the Boise, Idaho, city government tried to shut down their encampments. Obama's Department of Justice claimed homelessness was a lifestyle deserving legal protection  a preposterous argument, considering a homeless man can expect to survive only to age 47, a homeless woman only to 43, losing decades of life.

Yet the federal 9th Circuit ruled against Boise in 2018, so nine western states are powerless to limit street living. Boise is appealing to the Supreme Court.

Meanwhile, voters will have a choice in 2020: to surrender to the new Democratic normal of squalor and urban chaos or to reclaim their neighborhoods while humanely helping the homeless.


Betsy McCaughey is a former lieutenant governor of New York State. 
COPYRIGHT 2019 CREATORS.COM

Question of the Week   
Which one of the following was the first 20th century presidential candidate to call for a Presidential Debate?
More Questions
Quote of the Day   
 
"We can return to the explosive job creation, rising wages and general prosperity we had before the pandemic. We can have economic freedom and opportunity, and resist cancel culture and censorship. We can put annus horribilis, 2020, behind us and make America great again, again. We can do all this -- if we make the right choice on Nov. 3.The New York Post endorses President Donald J. Trump for re-…[more]
 
 
—The Editors, New York Post
— The Editors, New York Post
 
Liberty Poll   

Do you believe Republicans will continue to hold a majority in the U.S. Senate following the 2020 election?