Who’s to blame for San Francisco’s housing cost spiral?

Bay Area progressives are fond of blaming new-arriving rich techies for the dizzying rise in San Francisco housing costs. Yet the trail just as plausibly leads back to the door of some of the same people doing the demonizing, who have resisted the building of serious new housing capacity in the city. [Conor Friedersdorf, The Atlantic]

Like me, Friedersdorf was also struck by the story (told on public radio’s This American Life) of a San Francisco after-school program’s school musical, an anti-“gentrification” propaganda effort, which trained kids as young as six to go on stage in a production portraying their parents’ class as moral monsters. Shouldn’t that wait for college?

One Comment

  • You greatly overestimate how techies might interpret this attack on them because a large percentage of them think it’s not them that the play refers to. As the article points out, an overwhelming percentage of SF households are renters and all who live in pre-1979 constructed units are covered by rent control, which is the overwhelming majority of units given the resistance to allowing new construction. I’d guess a majority of the parents there benefit from rent control and see no relationship between allowing new construction and their personal economic situation.