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- Feb 2020
During the Great Inflation of the 1970s, when living expenses became unstable, factory jobs disappeared and C.E.O. pay began its exorbitant rise, home prices also spiked and, for the first time, outpaced stock performance. According to Dougherty, two things happened to homes: They became not just dwellings but strategic investments — ones that represented the bulk of American household wealth. As a result, cities, driven by “homevoters” — essentially single-issue voters who wanted to protect their property values — began passing zoning ordinances to limit growth and “protect neighborhoods.” Because stunting growth leads to higher property taxes, a vast number of suburbs and neighborhoods incorporated in order to control local land use and zone out poor people (whose social services raise property taxes).