When “Rights” Aren’t

In the past year, a group of vagrants have established a camp under the Highway 59 overpass at Wheeler. Property owners in the Museum Park neighborhood have complained about vandalism, defecation in public, and similar acts.

In April, the city passed an ordinance that prohibits camping on public property, but the American Civil Liberties Union […]

The Personal Approach to Flooding

Barry Klein of the Houston Property Rights Association has a very good article on Houston’s perpetual flooding problem. Klein’s crucial point is that individuals must take responsibility for flood proofing their own properties, rather than looking to government to solve the problem.

In recent months I have decided that flood proofing needs to be routine […]

The Preservation Mob

The City is currently preparing a 225-page document that details what property owners in The Heights can and can’t do. The neighborhood is designated as an historical district, and virtually any type of construction requires the permission of city thugs bureaucrats. The Chronicle reports,

Until now, officials say, the process for permit approval has been […]

Deed Restrictions

Two of the stated purposes of zoning are preventing “incompatible” land use and protecting neighborhoods. Both of these issues can be addressed without the coercive means of zoning. Deed restrictions (or covenants) provide the means to limit land uses through voluntary, contractual means—by respecting property rights.

Deed restrictions attach to the deed for a parcel […]

You Can’t Please Everyone

Almost without fail, any article or discussion that in any way pertains to land use in Houston inevitably draws laments about the city’s lack of zoning. As an example, a recent article in the Chronicle was humorously complaining about the proliferation of oil change businesses and pharmacies opening in Montrose. A reader commented:

Oh, to […]

A Dictator in Dallas

In late May, one of the items on the agenda of the Dallas City Council was a proposed settlement with a property owner regarding an eminent domain case. Councilwoman Sandy Greyson spoke against the settlement,

I’m not blaming anyone that we’re settling this case, but it’s just infuriating that if you’re rich enough you can […]

The Fallacy of “Cultural Appropriation”

Last week, Leftists in Portland, Oregon found a new cause: “cultural appropriation.” Apparently, while vacationing in Mexico, two women decided to open a taco truck upon returning to Portland. While in Mexico, they spent some time picking the brains of the locals, who were hesitant to share all of their secrets. But the women learned […]

A Campaign for Evil

For years, the city of Houston has pursued various schemes to make housing more affordable for low-income residents. Despite spending millions of tax dollars, that effort has done little more than create jobs for the administrators of these programs and pay fines to the federal government. Indeed, the Chronicle reports that nearly 29 percent of […]

The Tragedy is “the Commons,” Part 7

As we have seen, the goal of the commons movement is the obliteration of private property. The movement holds that the creation of values is not an individual achievement, but the result of collective effort. The movement holds that what is created by the collective should be controlled by the collective. While this may seem […]

The Tragedy is “the Commons,” Part 6

In most instances, establishing property rights to a resource is fairly straightforward. If an individual turns a barren field into a lush farm, or extracts ore from the ground, or plants an orchard, most people would recognize his right to that property. But what of more complex situations, such as air and water?

In some […]