…that no one wants or needs…
That’s the essence of real estate development in the command (aka centrally planned, aka socialist) economy of the People’s Republic of China. Here’s a ghost Disneyland, here huge unoccupied cities with millions of empty apartments, malls and administrative centers, up to ten of which reportedly go up each year.
The expense of this kind of building must surely be staggering and the waste unimaginable, but those are the hallmarks of central planning.
What makes it worse is the cozy collusion between developers and the government. Protected by the government, the developers can pretty much take anything they want. The latest example of such unbridled greed is the town of Wukan in the southern province of Guangdong, where residents are protesting what they describe as forcible land grabs with no compensation. The town has been encircled by police and cut off from the outside world: no food, no water, no Internet for three days now.
This sad-sack planet has had almost a hundred years’ experience with this kind of thing. Today, just like in 1917, it remains true that while centralized planning may be a boon for bureaucrats, it is a disaster for the people. One wonders if Obama and others in his administration who admire “the PRC way” have given this any thought.