On Real EstateHOPWA and the federal hoodwinking

In the midst of the most perilous financial times since the Great Depression, it pays to have HIV or full-blown AIDS and be in an unstable housing situation. The Department of Housing and Urban Development is throwing about $300 million to bolster housing and other aid to those battling the diseases as part of the agency’s Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) program.

Illinois will receive $5 million. Funds will be distributed to several housing and health organizations for the apparent cause.

HUD continues to ride a wave of a money-printing frenzy that has the federal government staring economic plight straight in the face. The Treasury continues to heat the presses and dish to the same banks responsible for the housing crisis that, ultimately, found Wall Street flat on its back flailing like a wounded turtle. Through HOPWA and other fingerlings, it’s seemingly just giving away money.

HUD, an important funneling system, has remained an almost impenetrable pipeline of federal money with unions and junctions at a slew of financial pumping stations. At first glance, HOPWA is justified in using $300 million to low-income HIV/AIDS suffers with housing. Its underbelly isn’t so cut and dry. This power play has been cunningly moving forward for about 20 years. A little more than a million Americans live with HIV or AIDS.

In the early ’80s, the disease was predicted to have the capability to wipe out a significant portion of the American population. Since 1981, about 600,000 people have died here, hardly the toll predicted at the onset of the disease. This more than points to massive survival efforts, all but slamming the door on many of the death-sentence stigmas thrust onto the public for nearly 30 years.

Still, HUD needs to come to a rescue of some kind and rush to what it still considers a wounded sector. Forget the traditionally disabled, veterans, at-risk children or cancer victims. Actually, the private sector has the cancer cashcow all but corralled.

So, as those who could truly benefit from HUD grants continue to be stepped over in favor of perhaps the biggest boondoggle in American history, the poor remain uneducated, unemployable and economically placated. Are you unemployed and poor, and do you have AIDS? Have we got the deal for you!

More information could be found by reading George Orwell’s Animal Farm.

from the August 5 – 11, 2009 issue

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