Why in the world would anyone still want to live in the state of California at this point? Residents of California have been forced to endure a brutally oppressive level of taxation for many years, and yet the state of California has still managed to find itself on the verge of bankruptcy. California Governor Jerry Brown declared a “fiscal emergency” in his state on Thursday, but nobody is even pretending that such a declaration is actually going to help matters. Brown wants to cut even deeper into the state budget (even after tens of billions have already been slashed out of it in recent years) and he wants to explore ways to raise even more revenue. Meanwhile, the standard of living in California is going right into the toilet. Housing values are plummeting. Unemployment has risen above 20 percent in many areas of the state. Crime and gang activity is on the rise even as police budgets are being hacked to the bone. The health care system is an absolute disaster. At this point California has the fewest emergency rooms per million people out of all 50 states. While all of this has been going on, the state legislature in Sacramento has been very busy passing hundreds of new laws that are mostly about promoting one radical agenda or another. The state government has become so radically anti-business that it is a wonder that any businesses have remained in the state. It seems like the moving vans never stop as an endless parade of businesses and families leave California as quickly as they can.
One of the only things keeping the population of California relatively stable at this point are the massive hordes of illegal immigrants that are constantly pouring into California cities. There are certain areas of major California cities that you simply do not ever want to go into anymore. In fact, there are rumors that the police will not even venture into certain areas anymore.
Traffic in California is a bigger nightmare than it ever has been before and the state cannot even keep up with repairing the roads and infrastructure that it already has. There are a few areas of California where you can still see the promise of greatness and the amazing natural beauty that once attracted tens of millions of Americans to the state, but they are few and far between now. At this point, most of the state is turning into one gigantic hellhole.
Perhaps the state could have some hope of turning things around if they had some solid leadership, but at this point the vast majority of the politicians in the state are pushing agendas that are so “radical” (not in a good way) and so “anti-American” that it is absolutely frightening.
Of course on top of everything else there is the constant threat of wildfires, mudslides and earthquakes. One day a really “big earthquake” is going to hit, and once that happens many people believe that the geography of the state of California could be permanently altered forever.
But what most people are focused on right now is the horrific financial condition that the state of California currently is in. Governor Brown recently summarized his analysis of California’s financial condition with the following statement: “We’ve been living in fantasy land. It is much worse than I thought. I’m shocked.”
Yes, things really are that bad in California.
The following are 22 facts about California that make you wonder why anyone would still want to live in that hellhole of a state….
#1 The California state government is facing a potential state budget deficit of 19 billion dollars this year, and California debt is rapidly approaching junk status. One way or another the taxpayers of California are going to have to pay for this mess somehow.
#2 California Governor Jerry Brown recently unveiled a “draconian” budget plan for 2011 that includes 12 billion dollars more in spending cuts and that maintains 12 billion dollars in recent tax increases.
#3 The state of California currently has the third highest state income tax in the nation: a 9.55% tax bracket at $47,055 and a 10.55% bracket at $1,000,000.
#4 California has the highest state sales tax rate in the nation by far at 8.25%. Indiana has the next highest at 7%.
#5 Residents of California pay the highest gasoline taxes (over 67 cents per gallon) in the United States.
#6 California had more foreclosure filings that any other U.S. state in 2010. The 546,669 total foreclosure filings during the year means that over 4 percent of all the housing units in the state of California received a foreclosure filing at some point during 2010.
#7 Home prices in some areas of California have completely fallen off a cliff. For example, the average home in Merced, California has declined in value by 63 percent over the past four years.
#8 725 new laws (most of them either completely pointless or completely stupid) went into effect in the state of California on January 1st.
#9 20 percent of the residents of Los Angeles County are now receiving public aid of one kind or another.
#10 The number of people unemployed in the state of California is approximately equal to the populations of Nevada, New Hampshire and Vermont combined.
#11 In some areas of California, the level of unemployment is absolutely nightmarish. For example, 24.3 percent of the residents of El Centro, California are now unemployed.
#12 Residents of California pay some of the highest electricity prices in the entire nation.
#13 The state of California ranks dead last out of all 50 states in the number of emergency rooms per million people.
#14 According to one survey, approximately 1 out of every 4 Californians under the age of 65 has absolutely no health insurance.
#15 At one point last year it was reported that in the area around Sacramento, California there was one closed business for every six that were still open.
#16 In the late 70s, California was number one in per-pupil spending on education, but now the state has fallen to 48th place.
#17 In one school district in California, children as young as five years old are being forced to watch propaganda films that tout the benefits of “alternative lifestyles”, and parents are being told that no “opting out” will be permitted.
#18 The crime rate in the San Diego school system is escalating out of control. The following is what San Diego School Police Chief Don Braun recently told the press about the current situation….
“Violent crime in schools has risen 31 percent. Property crime has risen 12 percent. Weapons violations (have gone up) almost 8 percent.”
#19 Oakland, California Police Chief Anthony Batts announced last year that due to severe budget cuts there are a number of crimes that his department will simply not be able to respond to any longer. The crimes that the Oakland police will no longer be responding to include grand theft, burglary, car wrecks, identity theft and vandalism.
#20 Things have gotten so bad in Stockton, California that the police union put up a billboard with the following message: “Welcome to the 2nd most dangerous city in California. Stop laying off cops.”
#21 During one recent 23 year period, the state of California built 23 prisons but just one university.
#22 The farther you look into the future, the worse California’s financial problems become. According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, California’s unfunded pension liability is estimated to be somewhere between $120 billion and $500 billion at this point.
So could the state of California actually go bankrupt?
In Washington D.C., some lawmakers are now working very hard behind the scenes to come up with a way to allow individual U.S. states to declare bankruptcy.
If something like that is worked out in Washington, then certainly the state of California would potentially be one of the first states to take advantage of it.
Unfortunately, the truth is that the state of California is a complete and total mess at this point, and not even bankruptcy is going to fix much.
The state has become a rotting, festering hellhole that is getting worse by the day. Yes, some really good people still live there, but there are some really, really good reasons why so many people are leaving the state in droves.
But perhaps you disagree. Does anyone want to state the case in favor of the state of California? Please feel free to express your opinion below….