OK, so what is it about America that screws up a good idea? A lot of other countries have state housing and it's not the scariest place in town (never is it the nicest). I think we have this inability to take things as far as they need to go in order to work. Rather than build sufficient state housing for all that might want (or even need) it, we build only enough for the poorest of the poor and then warehouse them there. As usual we can't risk socialism taking root and take every step to ensure its failure.
Basically my argument is that if there were enough state-owned units on the market, the working class would fill them out and dilute the destitute that are normally the only takers. That's likely wishful thinking. I also prefer the government making an investment in itself rather than just handing out checks to rich people that own apartment buildings. Why rent when you have all the resources to own? Also wishful thinking.
I don't know. Maybe the solution is more in capitalism and we should stress ownership. The only way to really get the housing that people can reasonably afford onto the market is to restructure taxes to make income properties unappealing. I'm all for this too.
Anyway, any other ideas?