I’m sure a lot of statist will be horrified by this story from the west coast, but they’ve probably never had to deal with aggressive bums that make a career out of mooching. The economics in this story are rather straightforward: If you make it easier for people to be bums, more people will be bums. There are separate, and much more challenging issues about people on the streets who are mentally unbalanced, but I strong suspect a strong majority of bums are not in that category.
A sticker with the phrase “Please don’t feed our bums” is stuck on storefronts around Ocean Beach and is based on satire of The National Park Service’s “Please don’t feed the bears” sticker. The sticker is also bringing a serious message. “People who live and work in the area know how it feels to be harassed by these people,” said Chaz Lomack, who works at an Ocean Beach business. The stickers are targeting a new group of homeless — young aggressive panhandlers who choose not to work and ask for money instead. …An employee at an Ocean Beach store called The Black started carrying the stickers two weeks ago. Ken Anderson, who did not want to be interviewed on camera, said the stickers were meant to make the community realize the homeless population has become out of control. “A lot of these kids have cell phones and they come from well-off families,” said Lomack. There have even been reports of violence against people who do not give the homeless money. “We don’t want them to do that because it is just enabling them to do their thing,” said Lomack.