Barriers to entry

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The Contracting Parties shall apply the rules set out in this paragraph in addition and without prejudice to their obligations under European Union law: (a) the budgetary position of the general government of a Contracting Party shall be balanced or in surplus; (b) the rule under point (a) shall be deemed to be respected if the annual structural balance of the general government is at its country-specific medium-term objective, as defined in the revised Stability and Growth Pact, with a lower limit of a structural deficit of 0,5 % of the gross domestic product at market prices. The Contracting Parties shall ensure rapid convergence towards their respective medium-term objective. The time-frame for such convergence will be proposed by the European Commission taking into consideration country-specific sustainability risks. Progress towards, and respect of, the medium-term objective shall be evaluated on the basis of an overall assessment with the structural balance as a reference, including an analysis of expenditure net of discretionary revenue measures, in line with the revised Stability and Growth Pact. [1]


The above text is a segment from the EU Fiscal Compact Treaty that relates to governments' ability to use revenue for investment in social projects such as the building of social housing, roads, rail, renewable energy or basically any initiative that would seek to use public funds for social infrastructure. States are prevented from pursuing such projects if their overall debt to GDP ratio is above 60%. [2] What this means in real terms is that despite the fact that financial resources exist to deal with critical issues such as the housing shortages, states are prevented from doing so.

Homelessness is on the rise as hotels and houses sit idle, boarded up, serving no immediate purpose. For example as of November 2016, 59 vacant properties exist in Galway City yet approximately 64 families are in emergency accommodation and rising. [3] the State's hands seemingly tied, the lack of political leadership to marry existing resources with needs, cowering before the majesty of the market.
the foster court hotel which is based in Galway city centre which lays empty while people are forced to sleep rough on the street outside
two boarded up social homes in Galway city
In theories of competition in economics, a barrier to entry, is a cost that must be incurred by a new entrant into a market that incumbents don't have or haven't had to incur. [4] Ironically the economic system that has been constructed acts as a literal barrier to entry for people seeking accommodation.

The emergence of "anti homeless spikes" has been one rather brutal way that urban planners have innovated in which public spaces are constructed or altered to discourage people from using them in a way not intended by the owner. Sloped benches and window cills or benches with armrests on top that prevent people from lying down are another example.

This is also know as hostile architecture or defensive architecture, a development that sets out to deal with symptoms rather than the cure. [5] Another example is the omission of high pitched tones which are only audible to young people, which act to discourage groups of youths from loitering in specific areas. Critics of hostile architecture argue that it replaces public spaces with commercial or "pseudo-public" spaces and uses architecture "to enforce social divisions". this is becoming more and more common in many cities and urban centers as a result of gentrification.
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  5. [5], more text.