I don't know who made this meme and can't credit them, but I have found the source of the towerblock image, which is in a rather lovely photo essay of eastern european residential architecture


I've gotten an alarming amount of interaction and I didn't even make the image.....

@celesteh I spent about a year writing a dissertation that pretty much said this and I coulda just sent in this meme. 🤦



There used to be a tumblr or something called "lol, my thesis" which solicited extremely short summaries it published anonymously. I sent a setence and my supervisor saw it and emailed me.

I think the sentence was "here's some music I wrote while drinking a lot."

@Essjax @celesteh two cakes! (one much, much larger and i'm guessing with less frosting)

@celesteh not a political statement but living somewhere that cramped and tightly packed hardly seems better than living on the streets. The bare ground covered by those buildings sounds more hospitable to me.


I'm not entirely familiar with East german post-war blocks of flats, but these kinds of programmes tended to build to basic minimums.

In London, council flats are often bigger and more liveable than the private housing stock built under Thatcher.

@celesteh Considering Knowing Thatcher those homes were probably about as livable as a walk-in freezer lol. The last time I thought of her without also thinking of a grave and piss was back when she didn't have a grave to piss on.

@BrandNameDoodoo @celesteh

it depends more on political makeup of the local Council, social housing built in 80s and even 90s/00s in provincial areas (such as Reading) with Labour Councils isn't too bad (friends of mine live in such buildings), taking into account flawed practices in the construction industry exacerbated by Thatcherism (particularly short term profit chasing and underinvestment in training apprentices) which affect even rich peoples houses and commercial buildings)

@BrandNameDoodoo @celesteh

Also here in Ipswich on the estate I currently live on it was originally split into Council and private housing, the flats in the "Council" areas (now a mixture of social and private housing) are smaller and closer together (although they do have much the same layout and facilities) - these were all built in late 1960s/early 1970s, way before Thatcho was in power (but in an area where the Conservatives controlled the Council until mid 1970s, after these were built)

@BrandNameDoodoo @celesteh sure, staying inside a home when it's -17° or +43° outside is waaaaaay worse than staying at the streets. Obviously, duh. How are you going to stay inside if your private residence is so cramped and close to other private residences, with walls and ceilings that separate you from the rest. Outrageous.

@celesteh different systems produce different results, and that's why we should always focus on systemic thinking

@celesteh @yogthos And then you get the geniuses at /r/architecture whining "HURR DURR IT HAS NO ORNAMENTATION AND IT'S UGLY AND DYSTOPIAN AND ELON MUSK'S MANSION AT LEAST LOOKS BEAUTIFUL!!"

@celesteh Those are both moronic ideas though.


Unlike reply-guying which is always a brilliant idea and very well received.

@celesteh Never said I wasn't a moron too, but even I can tell that you don't build gigantic sky scraping monolithic apartment/prison complexes. Those buildings are a maintenance nightmare!
Especially in the USA, no public housing project should be taller than you can access with a bucket truck. These were built in 1939 and are still doing fine:


I tend to prefer higher density. Central Paris is about 5 stories high, is higher density than Tokyo and looks pretty nice.

@celesteh Preferring high density is fine, just that tall buldings are hard to maintain. You need specialized equipment, industrial pumps, load bearing foundations, they just don't scale well. In the USA in particular, their affordable housing programs come with the brilliant idea to allocate funds for construction, but then expect rent to pay for maintenance. A number of big public projects just fell apart from lack of maintenance and general corporate sabatoge.

@celesteh Mostly I learned that from someone who does um... a very good impression of a college professor, so my information might be incomplete and... maybe omitting some inconvenient facts. But I swear it's an awesome lecture on public housing: redirect.invidious.io/watch?v=

@celesteh Also sorry for replying out of the blue. Everyone has to do that at least once!


Yeah, the style of housing should be something that works well where it's deployed. Tall buildings work best in urban areas. Those super-high blocks have had problems in a lot of places, which is why I like to use Paris as a good example of moderate height in high density.

It's hard to build anything that resists intentional sabotage by people who face no consequences. A lot of British high rise blocks were badly constructed. Poor fire safety is an ongoing scandal.

@celesteh @cy I also think that ppl could be more distributed geographically speaking. Like instead of making enormous megalopolis that are not sustainable and not self sufficient. Why not try to spread across the land in smaller communities?

@SrEstegosaurio @cy

As a tran, I'd much rather live in a city than be isolated, although it's really hard to do anything collaborative in London.

@SrEstegosaurio The important thing is to have control over your life and a supportive community, however you're living. Both enormous megalopolises and "smaller communities" that are wastelands of endless petroleum fueled farms all growing the same kind of corn are about stealing everyone's power and freedom to reserve it for a very few.

@celesteh@queer.party Worse attempt of a anti-homeless bench I've ever seen haha! Even I would still sleep on it if I had to

@celesteh i wouldn't worry too much. the same meme has been circulating fedi many times before already


It's been boosted about 200 times that I know of, which is a lot of boops.

@celesteh Honestly I'm more interested in someone who says "I want to talk about this," than someone who says "I made this."
If nobody else is talking about it already, then... you're on the right track!

@celesteh You can tell almost everything you need to know about a person based on whether they want to “do something about homeless people” or “do something about homelessness.”

Politics, capitalism vs socialism 

@celesteh I don't think this is about capitalism or socialism, it is about whether to treat human like human, it is about a government to serve people vs serve the rich.

It is possible to have a humane and democratic government under capitalism, people just need to be like human. Unfortunately, that is not the case right now.

Politics, capitalism vs socialism 


The post war consensus was still based on colonialism and a permanent under class.

I don't think there are any examples of capitalism being fair and just.

Politics, capitalism vs socialism 

@celesteh to me, most European countries runs on capitalism (as investor can still be rich, hence capital still holds enough value to attract capitalists).

I have not been there, but free education, universal healthcare, abundant union, humane prison, and bikable city seems like a pretty livable situation.

Politics, capitalism vs socialism 


There's like 27 different countries, just in the EU. All are capitalist. Some have privatised healthcare but others don't. Some are building social housing, but others aren't.

All are cooperating on detaining refugees under appalling conditions. The system relies on maltreatment of outsider groups.

@celesteh I'd love a balcony, but would def favor an apartment with no direct outdoor access, rather than direct outdoor access with no apartment.

It's ignorance, I think.

Typical Moscow 'socialistic' houses were 5- 9- or 16-floors, with some space between them. Depending on density, availability of schools, etc they were more or less livable and very boring.

The photo, in contrast, shows tightly coupled ~30 floor houses. Districts like this could be found in nowadays very capitalistic 'New Moscow' and I call it a recipe for disaster.

@celesteh Oh, and keep in mind that under socialism we typically don't have benches at all.


Is that a cultural thing? Britons love benches to an almost fanatical degree, but I think this dates back a very long time.

@celesteh If we speak about full-scale Soviet-style socialism, then I think the benches problem (which is joke of cause, but with a great deal of truth) is a consequence of the economical situation. No one wants and needs to maintain them, so they degrade quickly.

Here I found pictures which I think give a realistic impression of socialistic life. balkanist.net/life-and-death-i


From a guy with a racist profile photo.....

@celesteh USSR was shit but urban planning was one thing they did right.

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