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Even Google Employees Can No Longer Afford Housing in San Francisco

June 19, 2017

by Michael Krieger : libertyblitzkrieg – excerpt

Here’s a summary from The Verge:

Google’s employees can’t find affordable housing in Silicon Valley, so the company is investing in modular homes that’ll serve as short-term housing for them. The Wall Street Journal reports that Google has ordered 300 units from a startup called Factory OS, which specializes in modular homes. The deal reportedly costs between $25 and $30 million.

Modular homes are completely built in a factory and assembled like puzzle pieces onsite. This method of construction can reduce the cost of construction by 20 to 50 percent, the Journal reports. These apartments can also be put up more quickly to address dire housing needs. In one case the Journal cites, tenants saved $700 a month because of reduced construction costs.

Earlier this year, CNBC published a piece that detailed the difficulty tech companies have in trying to convince possible employees to move to San Francisco, especially when they live abroad. In response, some startups are establishing offices in other cities, like Chicago and Seattle. The other option is to out-tech the housing crisis, as Google appears to be doing with its modular home investment… (more)

Michael’s comments:

First, let’s get a couple of things out of the way. Yes, I understand that San Francisco is one of the most expensive places to live in the world, and yes, I get that nobody is forcing anyone to work for Google or live there. Yes, I understand that this is probably intended for entry level employees. Yes, I understand that revolutionary new ways of building homes using technology is the future, and the ability for such techniques to reduce costs is a positive thing. Yes, I understand all of that, yet I still think this development is a sign we are getting closer to some sort of breaking point.

The middle class in America has been getting squeezed for a long time, and the societal, political and ethical ramifications of this development cannot be overstated. In fact, I’ve been so concerned about the U.S. transformation into a neo-feualism serf economy, I’ve dedicated much of the last decade to writing and warning about it. What’s going on with Google employees unable to afford housing is a sign that this corrupt, fraud economy is now starting to affect even the fortunate amongst us… (more)

This is proof that trickle down doesn’t work. Rent payments are sucking it all back up into the banks each month. Rents go to the banks to pay off debts, and the money never has a chance to settle at the bottom level.

Economics lesson 101. Most property-owners are in debt to the banks. Banks create the money by LENDING it. In the end it all comes back to the banks as the debts are paid. The banks collect more than they lend so they always end up with more money while everyone else has less.

Banks are corporations with all the rights of a human, but none of the responsibility according to some. How will we deal with robots when they are taking over the jobs? Will they pay taxes to support the people they are replacing? What will their hourly rate of pay be? Will robots pay rent? What will all the people replaced by robots do with their time? Yes, we are in for some interesting times.

Looks like some Supervisors are looking into checking the robots revolution. How do you retrain workers to NOT WORK and stay out of trouble?”

Your comments on any of these stories are appreciated. I got wind of this on nextdoor. This could be a social media hit. We need more stories like this that don’t place the blame. We need to describe the problems before we can find solutions.

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