Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Trouble in Paradise

Writing at City Journal, frequent co-authors Joel Kotkin and Wendell Cox continue their doleful chronicle of California's death spiral.
A recent United Way study found that close to one-third of state residents can barely pay their bills, largely due to housing costs. When adjusted for these costs, California leads all states—even historically poor Mississippi—in the percentage of its people living in poverty.

California has the third-lowest percentage of people aged 25 to 34 who own their own homes—only New York and Hawaii’s are lower.

Rates of homeownership for African-American and Hispanic Californians have dropped at four times the rate of Asians and non-Hispanic whites in the last 10 years, while minority homeownership in the Golden State now lags most of the country, notably Texas and the southeast.

The people leaving California are not predominantly poor and uneducated. IRS data show that California’s outmigration between 2013 and 2014 was concentrated among middle-aged people with higher average incomes than households that stayed in California or moved there.

Regional planners and commercial chambers should indeed look to California as a model—of exactly what not to do.
How well-intentioned, misguided people can destroy a paradise - look no farther than the once-Golden State.