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Why are we last as a state?

Original post made by Kristi on Mar 4, 2012

Is this because of the image projected by our politicans or what is the reason? In 1970 California ranked as the number one state in the US and now we are last by a long shot. For those of us who travel this poll will not be a surprise based upon the comments we receive about the state.



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Comments (34)

Posted by Hoops, a resident of Mohr Park
on Mar 4, 2012 at 7:11 pm

One big reason is Prop 13 and of course all the money wasted by the state government.As a state we are still widely considered the most desireable place to live because of our climate and a lot of other reasons.The main problem is we are broke,but other than that a great place to live.When you say we are dead last you need to be more specific.


Posted by Cal , a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 4, 2012 at 7:19 pm

The poll was based on people nationwide and their opinion of California and Californians. This has nothing to do with Prop 13.

Also there has never been a poll where California is thought of as a most favored State. Most of the nation thinks Californians are loopy.

California is in dead last because people think most Californians are: 1) shallow surfer dudes 2) Hollywood or "Housewives of Orange County" type 3) shallow Valley girls 4) full of loopy and incompetent politicians and bureaucrats that have drven the State deep debt.


Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Mar 4, 2012 at 8:04 pm

Can't tell you that this IS the reason, but it makes you wonder. I hardly think it's the four reasons given above.

Ten states with the highest debt per person--all blue with the exception of North Dakota: Web Link Spending more money than we have.


Posted by Fred, a resident of Birdland
on Mar 4, 2012 at 9:31 pm

I used to be proud to say iwas from California now I just cough I to my shoulder. Very sad


Posted by clink, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 4, 2012 at 10:53 pm

I'm with Fred ... there was a time when I mentioned I was a native Californian people would shout for joy and want to know what new things were happening knowing they would experience them in a few years.

Now, I don't mention that I'm from California. They laugh at us. I get fruit & nut baskets for Christmas from my relatives. Fruits and nuts!!!

I want my dignity back. Do I have to move to Oklahoma or Canada or China??? Please someone explain it so I can hold my head up high again.


Posted by Ashamed Californian, a resident of California Reflections
on Mar 5, 2012 at 12:00 am

I agree California is really bad. Instead of chasing out the rich people we should be chasing out all the fruits and nuts. My relatives in South Dakota and Tennessee just laugh at me when I tell them I'm from California. Actually, I don't even tell them anymore. I'm so embarrassed I drive to Utah three times a week just to send off my mail. This is bad. Really really bad.


Posted by Hoops, a resident of Mohr Park
on Mar 5, 2012 at 6:07 am

Polls are polls,the reality is the number of people who live and want to live here despite the high cost of living.Go live in the midwest for a couple years and get back to me about how bad calif is.Our politicians are screwed up but so are the politicians in every other state.Almost 40 million people here and no one says they have to stay.


Posted by Ashamed Californian, a resident of California Reflections
on Mar 5, 2012 at 7:56 am

What is becoming more and more apparent is that people don't even want to come here anymore. Instead of visiting SF or LA, people from all over the world are opting for Peoria, Kalamazoo, Des Moines, Casper, and Hattiesburg, Souix Falls, Oklahoma City, Indianapolis, and Fargo.

People are moving from the Bay Area to places like rural Tennessee and Alabama, Idaho and Wyoming because of the better educational systems they have there. People are flocking to Arkansas because that state has so many Walmarts and we don't. Its really bad here.


Posted by steve, a resident of Parkside
on Mar 5, 2012 at 8:13 am

what ever happened to the PW rule that the same poster can't post under different names on the same topic? Is our local troll talking to him/her/itself again?
Must be lonely in your basement today.......


Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Mar 5, 2012 at 8:29 am

Web Link

"California's lack of jobs, high housing prices and high business taxes are also likely reasons why the state's population more closely resembles 1900 than the 1950's boom when Americans flocked to the state."

California is a beautiful state from the ocean to the Sierras from the redwoods to Death Valley. Easy on the eyes at least.


Posted by Ashamed Californian, a resident of California Reflections
on Mar 5, 2012 at 8:48 am

It's because we have so much regulation. And high paid floozy public school teachers. And not enough Walmarts. And we need to take the anti-pollution additives out of the gasoline and the anti-pollution devices off of cars. And too many unions. And we need to eliminate minimum wage. And go after the illegals. Arkansas is the best model.


Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Mar 5, 2012 at 8:54 am

AC, "And too many unions" - to that a big Amen.


Posted by Ashamed Californian, a resident of California Reflections
on Mar 5, 2012 at 9:06 am

Yes! Because unions are bad, really really bad. They don't allow workers to work for sub-subsistence level wages. And they collect dues from their members that go for things like supporting corrupt political candidates who are against free individuals working for sub-subsistence wages if they so desire. Unions go against freedom. And they'll poop in your car if you're against them.


Posted by joanna, a resident of Downtown
on Mar 5, 2012 at 9:17 am

Prop 13 started the downward spiral.....


Posted by Objective, a resident of Danbury Park
on Mar 5, 2012 at 9:26 am

With the exception of weather and the beaches we do not have much to offer and that is being objective.

On the negative side we have chased many industries out of the state, lots of pollution, high taxation, high regulation, high unemployment, huge debt, lack of revenue, high unionization with poor return on the investment, to many people here and over crowded etc.

and yes extremely wacky elected officials so I guess I can see why we are no longer considered the "golden state".

I was transferred here from Florida and would return there in a heartbeat if offered the chance at transferring back.


Posted by Ashamed Californian, a resident of California Reflections
on Mar 5, 2012 at 11:47 am

Yes, objectively speaking, we've got the worst educational system in the country. Just start with the universities. I'd much rather my kid went to the U of N Dakota, or U of Tennessee, or U of Alabama than any of the snobbish U-C's in this godforsaken state. And the silicon valley is waaay overrated. Give me Oklahoma or Utah any day for technological advancement and innovation.


Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill
on Mar 5, 2012 at 12:16 pm

"Prop 13 started the downward spiral....."

I'm going to have to chime in support of at least the basic concept of Proposition 13. It was unfair for people to see their property taxes skyrocketing based on paper gains (i.e., unrealized gains) of the value of their houses in the pre-Proposition 13 days. The biggest problem I see with Proposition 13 is the 2% cap on how much one's property tax can rise from year to year. 2% is less than the typical rate of inflation. Something like a 3% cap or a cap based on some measure of the actual inflation rate would be more fair.


Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Mar 5, 2012 at 12:42 pm

Illinois reduces your taxes once you hit a certain age. You have to apply for it, of course; but there were other ways--still are--to address the issue of being taxed out of a home.


Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill
on Mar 5, 2012 at 1:02 pm

Kathleen said: "Illinois reduces your taxes once you hit a certain age. You have to apply for it, of course; but there were other ways--still are--to address the issue of being taxed out of a home."

Something like that would answer my main objection of someone being taxed out of their home due to paper gains in their property value. But I still think that there is a problem with letting the volatile California housing market determine the rate of property tax increases for homeowners. It leads to wild, unpredictable swings in the amount of property tax revenue from year to year, and that tends to discourage careful fiscal planning and encourage waste. In my opinion, it's better for all concerned to have a steady, reliable stream of tax revenue which increases at about the rate of inflation. Tweaking Proposition 13 so that the cap is raised from 2% to a value which better reflects the true inflation rate should accomplish that.


Posted by Dan, a resident of Bridle Creek
on Mar 5, 2012 at 2:01 pm

Wrong, wrong, wrong Sam.

I must vehemently disagree with this statement: "...that tends to discourage careful fiscal planning and encourage waste".

I may be wrong but you seem to be blaming the markets for the problem and not the politicians who are creating the budgets.

Nobody (private citizens) is holding a gun to the politicians head to overspend and promise too much to special interests other than the special interests themselves. Meanwhile, those not in the protected groups - I'm assuming most on this forum - get the shaft.

Uh uh...I don't blame the markets one bit. These are a human-made problems and they are created from state and federal capitals.

Sincerely

Dan


Posted by The Capitals Are Coming!, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 5, 2012 at 4:55 pm

Beware all that comes from state and federal capitals. If unions and other protected groups backed off, then corporations could more effectively exercise their constitutional rights to have politicians more effectively back the market. Wall Street was being overregulated by union-backed pols. That's what caused the recession.


Posted by Steven, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Mar 5, 2012 at 5:34 pm

I agree with Dan.

What happened to all the property tax money that came in to the state/cities during the housing boom?

Oh, I know! The same thing that Stockton did (now on the verge of bankruptcy), spending money on buildings and offering generous pay and pension packages to their employees (see link: Web Link) including health care for life!! Funny thing, read the article, Stockton hired a new manager to clear up the mess, the guy has to make painful cuts everywhere, so one of the unions bought the house next to him to harass him and his family. Now THAT is classy!!! And we are wondering what is wrong? We are crazy to work hard, create wealth and have it squandered by politicians.

What happened to all the income tax money that came in to the state/cities during the dot com boom?

Did you see any increase in the quality of living? Any additional services?? Where did all that money go????

I propose we create a new protected group: THE SICK & TIRED TAXPAYER GROUP. Numerically we would be a much, much larger group than all the "protected classes" combined!!

And BTW, WHY, Oh Why should anyone be a "protected class" if they work for the city or state??? What are they doing to be "protected"???




Posted by Steven, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Mar 5, 2012 at 6:58 pm

While I am at it....

Take a public agency, any public agency!!

Here's an article about the post office: (Web Link)

The headline says: "Postal Chief's $384,000 Pay Sparks Call For Cut"

The article makes several points, such as that for an organization as big as the Postal Service (half a million employees, 32,000 locations, 210,000 vehicles), the Postal Chief is not making enough as other chiefs in private industry.

It brings as an example the CEO of United Parcel Service (UPS), that made $10.7 million in compensation in 2010.

BUT, and here is the BUT....UPS made $3.8 BILLION in profits last year. UPS employs 398,000 people.

The Postal Service "...reported a $5.1 BILLION loss..., in their last year that ended September 30.

There is no reason it cannot be run efficiently, like a private sector company. They run it like they don't care because WE the taxpayers will bail them out!!!

We indeed should be a protected class.


Posted by new, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 5, 2012 at 8:42 pm

I wasn't here when Prop 13 passed so I don't know too much about it.
But I do know that when I bought my house a year ago, the previous owner paid $4200 in taxes the year I bought the house. This year, I will pay $9800 in taxes. Somehow.... that seems mixed up. If they didn't sell, the city would be collecting half the tax. We paid a tax rate of double in the Midwest.... but we had excellent schools, with school busses, smaller class sizes, we didn't have to print out own handouts etc.

On the other hand, I can see why people are upset with the decision the school board is making too. They are hiring administrative personel but canceling a reading program and firing teachers??? They use all the classic tactics to bully parents into being willing to pay more money so they don't have to cut their administrative budgets. I don't want to pay more money to go to the administrators...I would pay it IF I knew it was benefitting the students.

Back to my original point.... I think that there is much room for improvement in the Prop 13 situation


Posted by Ashamed Californian, a resident of California Reflections
on Mar 5, 2012 at 8:48 pm

Steven is soooo right. Health care for life! Imagine that? Where do these people get off thinking they deserve health care for life?

And in Stockton, where do these unionized cops get off protesting a 30-40 cut in the city's police force? ALL city police depts should be eliminated unless they can show a profit, just like a private sector company. Domestic calls? How many valuable tax dollars are wasted in police responses to domestic abuse? Where's the profit in that? Let's have our police operate efficiently by cracking down on expired parking meters and other domains where a profit can be shown.

As far as all the wasted taxpayer money during the housing boom, don't tell me that it went for new roads and bridges and highways and sewers and park maintenance and police and fire prevention and the like. I'm talking about the quality of MY life, and MY life didn't improve one iota. MY life has sucked. Gawd I hate this state! All of us who don't collect medicare or social security, who don't work for the state, who don't belong to a union, who have never collected unemployment compensation or food stamps, who have never received workers' disability comp, who have never used a public library or driven a public road -- and I mean ALL of us -- ought to start up a movement: Coalition for Recovery of America's Payouts. CRAP for short. All us CRAPPERS need to go out and make a splash. No support of our govt unless there are profits to be made. And that includes our fire departments too. There's no reason why they can't be handing out parking tickets while waiting for a false fire alarm to come in every couple of months.


Posted by new, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 5, 2012 at 9:08 pm

And I must say that it is people like Ashamed that make me so glad I moved here. People that are so nice and welcoming and make it easy to have a nice and civil conversation. Maybe they live in my neighborhood, you know the neighborhood that the realtor said is so 'great' and is just so friendly that they never have said hello. Or the neighbor that told me she is 'too busy to meet new people' (no, I'm NOT making this up). Or the parents on the soccer team that look the other way when I walk up or roll their eyes if I ask a question because I don't know how something is being done. Or the people in my office that I have sat next to for a year and they have never said hello. Yes.... I LOVE California and especially Pleasanton. It's such a great place to live. I feel honored that I have the privilege of living here.


Posted by Cassie, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 6, 2012 at 8:39 am

California is in such bad shape because its residents have become overwhelmingly left-wing loon. The unions, left-wing wackos, and environmental wakos rule this state; and like anywhere else where unions and lefties rule, it has gone to the dogs. Things aren't going to change in California until we get rid of our socialist state and local governments.


Posted by Ashamed Californian, a resident of California Reflections
on Mar 6, 2012 at 9:42 am

There's a lot more that can be gotten rid of than the union- and left wing loon-created socialist state and local governments. The road in front of my house is terrible. The water coming out of my tap smells terrible. And people make fun of me because of my mountain accent -- they call it "hillbilly." The people who work in my office won't even talk to me unless I put my shoes on. And the environmentalists who believe in global warming want additional pollution controls.


Posted by Marianne, a resident of Foothill High School
on Mar 6, 2012 at 9:47 am

to all of you whiners, please be advised that you don't need a Visa, passport or any other legal documents to leave California, just leave. I'm a 6th generation Califorian and love it here. We are the 8th largest economy and have everything here. So please don't feel the need to stay, we really want you to leave.


Posted by Bill Carman, a resident of Country Fair
on Mar 6, 2012 at 10:14 am

California became a second tier state when conservatives passed Prop 13 and developed the initiative process that relieved elected officials of their responsibility to govern. Republican blockade of any progressive policies make compromise impossible.


Posted by Carlos, a resident of Highland Oaks
on Mar 6, 2012 at 11:13 am

It seems we have a choice of 50 states to live in. If you're not happy here, try one of the others. Personally, I've liked it here for 69 years.


Posted by ca94566, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 6, 2012 at 12:44 pm

The California State Legislature currently has a Democratic majority, with the Senate consisting of 25 Democrats and 15 Republicans and the Assembly consisting of 52 Democrats and 28 Republicans. Except for the period from 1995 to 1996, the Assembly has been in Democratic hands since the 1970 election (even while the governor's office has gone back and forth between Republicans and Democrats). The Senate has been in Democratic hands continuously since 1970.
"wickepedia"


Posted by Melanie, a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Mar 6, 2012 at 4:44 pm

I have lived in CA, IL, KY & GA...I love, love California! The people, the weather, I can go a fairly short distance to be in the city, country, river, lake, desert, snow or ocean. We have our problems but I wouldn't trade it.

Find your happiness somewhere else if you think other places are so great. When you miss CA come back for a visit, leave your money and then go back home :)


Posted by 38 states, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 6, 2012 at 5:46 pm

I've visited 38 states; worked in more than I lived and lived in New England, mid-Atlantic, FLA, KY, NM and California. I like CA, but not the schools. We worked with our kids and the schools and they got an education. When we had an opportunity to live/work in the DC area for 2 years, I declined. One of our kids would not have made the transition academically. The other didn't want to socially.

"In 1970 California ranked as the number one state in the US" - number one in what? Not education. Kids straight from CA to our international school (I lived in Europe at this time) had to work very hard to catch up to the rest. I moved from a public school in NJ and saw little difference - poorer science lab, more competition in foreign language, more required books for reading but assignments and tests were similar.

Wherever you live make it your home - you'll be happier (or move). I do like it here and wish we could afford to retire here.


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