Should Twin Falls Put the Brakes on Growth?
No! It’s my opinion. I think it’s the right one. The culture of the Mountain West is one of self-reliance and liberty. Governments that start clamping down on growth generally end up picking winners and losers. It’s anti-capitalist. Our country fought a war to end state socialism. The Nazis picked winners and losers. It doesn’t foster innovation and competition. It builds big lumbering things and failures.
I bring this up because when Twin Falls County talks “Comprehensive Plan” I hear regulations.
We also shouldn’t employ government to restrain other people’s business efforts and protect us from competitors.
Don’t get me wrong. Some regulations are good. We don’t want strychnine in our water. We also shouldn’t employ government to restrain other people’s business efforts and protect us from competitors. This happens in big eastern and western coastal enclaves. Look at New York and New Jersey. Did it control the sprawl? In California it caused extreme spikes in housing costs and now the population of what would be a major city lives on the streets and below overpasses.
The hunter-gatherers who once passed through this valley probably didn’t like the arrival of farms and ranches. Later, the ranchers probably didn’t care for the arrival of manufacturing, tall buildings and early housing developments.
The growth keeps kids here. They don’t move away to Denver and then come visit only every other Thanksgiving. It keeps them here because it means more opportunity. If it’s too much there’s plenty of wide-open space in some neighboring counties. The rural counties are seeing the opposite with their economies. Communities on their way to ghost-town status.
The first time I met “Butch” Otter I asked what we could do to clean up unsightly properties that are often gateways to our tourist destinations. “Nothing,” he replied. Telling people what to do isn’t the Idaho way. I understood. If the neighbor wants to sell his field to a developer, it’s his right. We don’t want the neighbor giving us orders. Especially if he’s backed by government.