Why I Keep Writing About Dickinson, North Dakota, Part II

I believe in the necessity of Child Labor Laws, Minimum Wage Laws, Workers Compensation Laws, Occupational Safety and Health Laws.  They came about because workers were mistreated.

Some of you business people would probably like to express your opinion that there should be free markets, let the market place decide, we don’t need any regulations on business.  I would like to have you spend several weeks scrubbing out the inside of rail road tanker cars.  You don’t need to know what was in them.  You don’t need to see any MSDS sheets.  You don’t need a respirator.  You don’t need positive ventilation.  You just need to shut up, and do your job scrubbing out these tanker cars.

I believe that workers arriving in Western North Dakota should have had some protection.  Prior to 2007 in Dickinson, a one bedroom apartment rented for approximately $400 per month.  By 2011, a one bedroom apartment rented for approximately $1,500 per month.  Prior to 2007 in Dickinson, a three bedroom house rented for approximately $700 per month.  By 2011, a three bedroom house rented for approximately $3,000 per month.  The price of rent quadrupled from 2007 to 2011.

Real estate agents, property managers, and property investors liked to say, “We have no choice, our prices have gone up and up.”  No, your prices went up by %50 at the most.  If a property investor purchased a three bedroom home in Dickinson in 2001 for $40,000, their mortgage payment, property tax, and insurance was probably less than $350 per month.  The mortgage payment is fixed, the insurance may have increased slightly, and the property tax may have gone up as much as %100 by 2011.  So by 2011, the monthly payments might now be $525 per month, it went up %50.  Why were you trying to charge $3,000 per month for rent?  It is because you are greedy, you were trying to take advantage of people, and you thought that you could get away with it.

Like I said before, if investors could have figured out a way to buy up all of the food before anyone else could get any, they would sell it back to you at quadruple the price.  Not being able to buy up all the food, or have children work at factory labor, the real estate agents, property managers, and property investors in Dickinson had to stick to real estate.  So all they could do was just make sure that there was a scarcity of housing available, which they did.

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