Sadie found the article quoted below (Thank you, Sadie!). It makes some sense and would be particularly easy to do in counties like the one I live in (Alameda, CA) which include a major inner city (Oakland) and large suburbs (Fremont, Union City, Hayward). It would be a bit harder to do in counties like San Francisco, which are coterminous with the city. But, I suppose a “region”could contain several counties, such as the entire San Francisco Bay Area, which already has several multi-county governmental units in place. Your reactions?
by Keith Koffler on August 1, 2012, 2:49 pm
A provocative and interesting piece by Stanley Kurtz in the National Review suggests that one of the ways President Obama is seeking to “spread the wealth around” is to snatch the taxes paid by those who have “made it” and moved to the outer suburbs and share the loot with their less successful, urban based neighbors.
The effort, Kurtz writes, is falling largely under the radar because it is presented as an environmental and stress-reducing beautification program known as the anti-suburban sprawl movement.
Suburban sprawl theorists argue that the spreading out of populations to the far suburbs abolishes wonderful farmland, wastes land that could be devoted to parks and recreation, results in ugly McMansions, and pollutes because of the distances required driving to work, to the mall, to your friend’s house, and so forth.
The solution is to bunch people into smaller urbanized living areas, suburban sprawl experts say, while expanding public transportation to get them the now shortened distances they need to go.
But Kurtz says these people are really after successful people’s tax dollars, which they will have to share with the less well off neighbors they thought they’d left behind.
I’ll let him explain.
The ultimate goal of the movement . . . is quite literally to abolish the suburbs. Knowing that this could never happen through outright annexation by nearby cities, they’ve developed ways to coax suburbs to slowly forfeit their independence.One approach is to force suburban residents into densely packed cities by blocking development on the outskirts of metropolitan areas, and by discouraging driving with a blizzard of taxes, fees, and regulations.Step two is to move the poor out of cities by imposing low-income-housing quotas on development in middle-class suburbs.Step three is to export the controversial “regional tax-base sharing” scheme currently in place in the Minneapolis–St. Paul area to the rest of the country. Under this program, a portion of suburban tax money flows into a common regional pot, which is then effectively redistributed to urban, and a few less well-off “inner-ring” suburban, municipalities.
Obama, Kurtz says, supports this agenda, and would focus on it during a second term, once he has collected the votes of the very suburban soccer moms he wants to urbanize.