The Santa Monica City Council is behind the times. While the yoke of oppression has been lifted from the shoulders of East Germans, Czechs, Hungarians and Poles, Santa Monica landlords are still fighting to regain their property rights (Times, March 1). If capitalism and democracy have been revived in these countries, it might work in Santa Monica.
Even President Gorbachev has just pushed through a measure for the private use of land by Soviet citizens. The economic failures of Marxism are as evident in Santa Monica as they are in the Eastern Bloc countries. As economic freedoms are restored to these nations, Santa Monica apartment owners, at the least, deserve the return of their property rights. Gorbachev's reforms, if emulated in Santa Monica, would most likely provide for the elimination of the Rent Control Board; then, hundreds of boarded-up apartments would return to the rental pool where they belong.
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