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February 10, 2013


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Is it just me, or does it seem that people that want a lesser role for government in their lives (e.g., the type of people who might have objected to the size of an Obama sign which was at the nucleus of this case) often prefer to live under the rule of a homeowner's association? I guess liberals might live in New York City co-ops, but the exurban home owners association is more of a Republican phenomenon.

Alfred Brophy

Griggsy--really interesting question.

One might think that the libertarian position would be that whatever people agree to via covenants they should be bound by. I think that's Richard Epstein's position. But I'm not sure that the small government types can quite figure out what to do about covenants. I think Richard Pipes' Property and Freedom, for instance, criticizes HOAs/restrictive covenants and lumps them together basically with local public land use restrictions. In short, I'm not sure that people who want small government are any more apt to like HOAs -- unless, perhaps, the HOA is making their neighbors do something they approve of!

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