Back Main Street, Not Wall Street in Housing Crisis
We could look at the numbers, or cite statistics, but you just have to drive down any average street in the U.S. to see the fallout from the housing bubble and the market crash. Here in Miami, condo towers are empty monuments to the great failure of the housing bubble. What happens with those buildings will be a real testament to the future of this country.
In the early days of the boom, in Miami and in many cities across the U.S., our government facilitated the real estate explosion. Our city, state, and federal governments worked together to drop taxes, allow easy credit, and create infrastructure for mega-real estate deals. They worked closely with developers to funnel public dollars into private pockets. Public officials relieved boom profiteers of any and all responsibility to the public. Speculators raked it in hand over fist while the poor, the canaries in the coal mine of the coming crisis, were quickly displaced by gentrifying neighborhoods. Middle and working class people were swept into the speculative craze, and accepted the illusion of easy cash through easy credit. Meanwhile, the people on top cashed in and got out as quick as possible. They knew what was coming.