Salvo 10.19.2021 10 minutes

Pass Tents

Homeless encampment outside Larchmont Charter School – Selma

A hobo no-go zone report

Referring to feral street people as “our unhoused neighbors” or “a person experiencing homelessness” is an attack on reality. In fact, they are mentally ill—schizophrenics, drug addicts, and alcoholics, usually in combination. 

Because I don’t need to teach my kids about the Faces of Meth yet, we call the ghouls standing next to every freeway exit “hobos.” As in, “Don’t look over there, kids! That hobo forgot to put on pants today.”

“Hobo” is a quaint word that recalls ancient memories of journeymen riding railroads trains with banjos on their knees and their few possessions wrapped in kerchiefs on the ends of sticks. Some of you may be lucky enough to know a boomer who still refers to them as bums. 

“Bums” is what my mother called them (and still does). Growing up, that’s what everyone called them. Disney composer Randy Newman even immortalized the term in his 1983 song “I Love LA” when he sang “Look at that bum over there, man, he’s down on his knees!” 

The song was written in 1983, which gives you an idea of just how long the bums have been plaguing this city. We don’t love it. We, the people experiencing homeness, the housed neighbors, are now the ones down on our knees.

L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin recently proposed allowing thousands of violent hobos to set up camp at our most popular beaches

Then this month a family of five was attacked by violent, machete-wielding homeless men at the beach in Malibu. The dad, in an attempt to protect his children, was slashed multiple times and maimed.

“Prosecutors detailed the father’s grisly injuries Wednesday, saying the machete attack left him disfigured with a cut tongue, a lost eye and cuts to his nose, ear and lip.”

An eye for a lie. 

The New Meth

There is a simple explanation for the dramatic increase in homeless zombies in our cities: It’s the meth, stupid. You won’t hear this from anyone who gets paid to “solve homelessness.”

But this is not your grandfather’s meth. It still all comes from Mexico, our “friend” to the south. But this new meth is not the form made from ephedrine, the “party” meth, which got regulated into oblivion and could never be made in large enough quantities to wreak too much havoc anyway. Since then, the Mexican cartels figured out how to make meth with other chemicals. It’s called “P2P meth,” for the phenyl-2-propanone precursor, and it’s the kind you see in Breaking Bad. This stuff is put together with a poisonous brew of easy to source industrial chemicals — no pilfered cough syrup needed.

The problem is that P2P meth has the unfortunate side effect of causing schizophrenia. Oops!

Reporter Sam Quinones has written for years on the meth situation, and he explained what P2P meth does in a recent podcast: “it turns people schizophrenic, paranoid, [with] horrible hallucinations–cheetahs coming out of the walls, the government inside my brain, people unable to speak…incapable of basically living in a regulated society.”

The new meth doesn’t keep you dancing at the party. This meth turns you inward—into a cozy little tent. Quinones debunks the homeless-as-housing-crisis myth. “The tents and meth almost go together like hand in glove. You want to be in a tent because the tent is where you can just be alone. You don’t have to be around everybody else. These encampments are a direct result of that. People view these tents as benevolent things, as keeping people from the cold weather…but they are simply enabling spaces for folks with horrible psychiatric problems created by this staggeringly, potent and prevalent methamphetamine that’s coming out of the Mexican trafficking world.”

Add in a few grains of Chinese-supplied fentanyl, which enters Mexico in huge quantities via ship at the Pacific ports of Lazaro Cardenas and Manzanillo, and you get Mexican-made P2P schizo meth that’s also insanely addictive. You go from your house in the suburbs to a tent on the street—after just a few hits.

This is not a housing crisis.

These are Tents Times

Meanwhile, those of us not inside the tent world can see with our own eyes what is happening. Our urban tent situation, already dire, has degenerated into dangerous degenerates running wild. And not just tents—in some cases the dirty tents have been replaced with ramshackle two-story wooden structures with electricity, and hot showers. There are heaps, piles, skyscrapers of garbage and detritus, all over, everywhere, in every doorway, median, park, freeway onramp, freeway off ramp, freeway overpass, beach boardwalk, sidewalk, street, campground, children’s playground, and rest stop. 

California’s motto is “Eureka!” but I propose we change it to “You Reek. Gah.”

Our current slumlord Mayor Garcetti is trading one tent city for another as he heads to India to run the embassy there. How will he even know he left? Hollywood Boulevard is skid row. Venice Beach boardwalk is skid row. Santa Monica is skid row. The entire San Fernando Valley is skid row. And in Downtown Los Angeles, the original Skid Row is skidding harder than ever.

Some fancy new homeless shelters are being built in the most expensive ZIP codes in LA, and everyone knows that the obvious result will be trash, crime, and more decay in the surrounding streets.

The only two places in California where you won’t see tents are Disneyland and the landing strips at LAX, but don’t be surprised if some tents spring up outside the happiest place on earth soon.

Seventy percent of Californians just voted for more of this. The failed recall election of Governor Newsom will ensure that these types of homeless attacks increase. If I can’t take the kids to the beach, well, maybe I do need to head to the landlocked plains.

But eventually, once rich and famous people start getting slashed and attacked, the public may be ready to hear my modest proposal to fix this once and for all.

Homele$$ Lives Matter

The homeless crisis is fake. By fake I mean, it’s an engineered social dysfunction created on purpose to ensure a steady flow of suitcases stuffed with unmarked nonconsecutive bills to City Halls around the country. It is a racket. A money laundering operation, just like the Department of Defense budget, and almost at the same astronomical scale. 

Just like the open border, Covid, and inflation, fake crises are never allowed to go to waste.

Los Angeles voted itself $1.2 billion to “address homelessness” in 2019. The number of homeless people, naturally, shot up from 40,000 to close to 70,000 now. Meanwhile, Governor Newsom pledged $4.8 billion to “address” and “confront” homelessness in the state, where over 150,000 homeless live.

But wait, there’s more! As the recall pressed in on him, he announced an additional $12 billion to “confront” homelessness.

He’s addressing it, you guys! He’s confronting it! 

Liberal politicians understand that homelessness works. Homelessness is good. The more tents the better. The more lunatics who threaten and harass you with their pants around their ankles, the more likely you are to vote for new taxes and more spending.

You see a filth-encrusted hobo nodding out on a curb, urine running down the sidewalk—our leadership class sees cash. 

You see a machete-wielding degenerate with stained pants terrorizing tourists on the Hollywood Walk of Fame—a greasy LA city official sees a new tax, a new program, a big pay raise for himself.

There is a reason that LA’s infamous Skid Row has been allowed to fester and grow for almost 40 years. It now spans dozens of blocks in the downtown shopping district of America’s second largest city. It is mile after mile, block after block, of wasted zomboids shuffling past heaps of putrid trash, drug dealers, and pop-up brothels in Porta-Potties. 

It’s a perfect grift, and they don’t care if you know it. 

Thanks to the tsunami of money, in 2020 there was a 12.7 percent rise in homelessness, “despite an increase in the number of people rehoused.” 

I have no clue what “rehoused” means, but I’m guessing it’s a portmanteau of “deloused” and “re-hosed.”

Meanwhile, Los Angeles mayoral candidates like Kevin De Leon continue to double down on the clown world policy of Housing First. 

Placing meth and heroin addicts in shiny new apartments with kitchens to clean, dishwashers to load and unload, beds to make, and trash to take out—what could go wrong?

San Francisco just announced it’s building micro-homes for some lucky addicts

They had to remove the Port-a-Potties from LA’s skid row a few years ago because they were being used as brothels. Prayers to the poor city employee who has to clean out each micro house when the resident ODs.

A Modest Proposal to Solve “Homelessness”

Solving homelessness “requires us to center solutions in racial equity so that we can dismantle the legacy of racism that still shapes our region’s vast inequalities of income, wealth, and opportunity,” says Jacqueline Waggoner, who chairs the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority’s “Ad Hoc Committee on Black People Experiencing Homelessness.” 

If homelessness is caused by racism, what’s with all the sunburned white beggars at every freeway exit in California? 

I wasn’t able to find Waggoner’s salary, but Heidi Marston, Executive Director of LAHSA, earned $260,000 in 2019. The mob has to pay its accountants well to keep the schemes going, after all. Marston was also on the Biden-Harris transition team. She must be a good person because she has a sign hanging in her office that says, “You Are On Tongva Land.” (The Tongva are the closest Los Angeles has to indigenous people).

I’m sure Marston reminded the veterans overdosing on fentanyl on Hollywood Boulevard that their tents are on stolen Tongva land.

The cities and states in Blue America have been using homelessness as an excuse to drain America of its wealth for too long. It’s time for the private sector to step in.

The Plan

Step 1: Offer a stipend of, let’s say, $10,000 to any sidewalk encampment resident who doesn’t chase you away with a machete. To receive their stipend, they need to get on the air-conditioned bus waiting at the curb. 

Step 2: The bus full of volunteers takes them to a beautiful, remote facility with lots of open space, maybe in the healing air of the desert. Far from drug dealers and the “social service” agencies who enable chronic wretchedness. They will enjoy plentiful food, free comprehensive health care, and new clothes. 

Step 3: They are triaged into drug treatment, mental health treatment, and basic life skills coaching. Many will need all three. 

Step 4: At the end of their stay, they can graduate. Graduation requires that they have been sober for six months, have a job, and a place to live that is not in the wretched urban hellhole from whence they came. The first few graduation classes will be offered good jobs and transitional housing on site. 

Step 5: Once they have maintained sobriety and general health in the outside world for a specified amount of time, the stipend is released to them in the form of a money market fund.

Step 6: Those who are unable or unwilling to graduate can stay on indefinitely. The mentally ill will be able to stay in mandated psychiatric hospice where they can receive excellent medical care and be reunited with family. 

Step 7: Once other people with drug addictions nationwide hear about the success of this program, it can be offered in idyllic natural settings across the country. 

All I need to make this happen is to forge a hobo brain trust with private-sector titans who can build this hoboasis in the desert. Elon Musk, Dr. Drew, Peter Thiel. With Kanye thrown in for good measure.

It would also help if we could patrol the waters off the coast of Mexico and keep Chinese-made fentanyl and precursor chemicals out of North America. And how about we figure out how to stop the Mexican cartels from destroying our people? We’re just going to keep letting them mind rape young Americans? Enough.

Will California choose to stand up to the Homeless Services Authority and the various militant homeless activists who get paid by the city to maintain the status quo? 

Or will the residents, many with valuable real estate at record highs, allow their property values to be sunk under tons of human feces?

They voted for this. Maybe we just have to let California collapse under its own dysfunctional weight.

Which, let’s face it, is the “solution” we’ll end up with.

The American Mind presents a range of perspectives. Views are writers’ own and do not necessarily represent those of The Claremont Institute.

The American Mind is a publication of the Claremont Institute, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, dedicated to restoring the principles of the American Founding to their rightful, preeminent authority in our national life. Interested in supporting our work? Gifts to the Claremont Institute are tax-deductible.

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