Will California turn it around?

As someone who has lived in California their entire life, this state is completely mismanaged. Too many regulations, taxes, high rent prices, traffic, wildfires, and shutdowns are driving people and companies out of the state.

Big companies continually are shifting all of their headquarters elsewhere running from state taxes and high wages. Tesla, HP, Oracle, Charles Schwab, Wells Fargo, McKesson, CBRE, DropBox are all moving headquarters or completely downsizing their California presence.

Since the pandemic, California has remain mostly closed when compared to other states. Indoor dining, movie theaters, gyms, churches, salons have all been closed or only open so minimally. Outdoor dining was shutdown without good reason. Despite this aggressive push, nothing is improving. We're now the state with the highest number of cases. This is just a complete joke!

I work in downtown San Francisco and it's just plain filth out there. The mayor is taking huge pride in being the first city in the country to shelter-in-place yet she never went to actually fix the bigger issues tied to homelessness and the excessive garbage all over the city. Tons of needles and poop everywhere on the sidewalks next to luxury high rises charging $3600 for a 1-bedroom.

Newsom is a huge clown who can't get it together to run this state. Everyone is against him (democrats, republicans, liberals, conservatives). I can't think of anyone who actually likes him.

Will California actually get it together?

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Comments (69)

Dec 29, 2020 - 2:28am

"Capital goes where it is welcome and stays where it is well treated." Walter Wriston

It's not just that California doesn't seem to welcome capital; it's that the capital it has is being treated to declining quality of life, hence why a not-insignificant portion is leaving.

I said about a year ago that I'm unsure of the level of exaggeration when it comes to how crappy places like SF and LA are. Two of my co-workers visited San Francisco in late 2018 and early 2019 separately, several months apart totally independently, and both said that they didn't notice that it was particularly bad. Didn't see any needles or fecal matter or excessive homeless people. My boss did visit Los Angeles in 2019 and made note of how trashy (literally, trash) it was outside of the hotel.

It's tough to say. I feel like we live in a post-truth world. I don't know what to believe. I've got co-workers telling me their experience in SF was just fine and then I see video documentaries on the hell that is San Francisco. Do I believe my eyes (the video) or my ears (my co-workers)? I don't know what to believe anymore (and that's on most topics). 

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  • Analyst 3+ in HF - EquityHedge
Dec 29, 2020 - 5:13am

I've lived in SF for 5+ years and would describe it as a very polarized experience depending on where you go. Stick to the nicer / residential neighborhoods and housing prices aside it's gorgeous - clean, great views across the bay, walkable to amenities, lots of outdoor parks, no homeless, etc. Go to the tenderloin and it's a different story (this is where 90%+ of those SF exposés are filmed) because it's literally a third-world garbage dump in that area, like the streets are crowded with homeless shooting up in front of garbage fires

  • Analyst 3+ in RE - Comm
Dec 29, 2020 - 10:41am

OP here. I frequent LA a bit and will say its harder to compare to SF. Most of the fecal matter, needles garbage and aggressive homeless are based in the high foot traffic areas of SF, especially since SF is less car-friendly compared to LA. Tenderloin and civic center areas tend to be the worst, this is where most of the homeless are. SoMa, parts of the financial district, the major shopping district and other neighborhood close by are okay, but could definitely be better when compared to other cities. The mission district a "hip" neighborhood could be thrown in there, but crime is still an issue in some parts. Market Street, often compared to Fifth Avenue, the Miracle Mile, Champs Elysees, does have fecal matter and needles on the nicer stretches of downtown. It's less noticeable, especially if you are visiting, because it gets picked up by janitorial services of buildings nearby, not the city. These buildings that rent out office or living space charge high premiums and don't want things like this to deter potential tenants so they do it on their own. However, they can't catch all of it. So you actually end up seeing skid marks on the sidewalk that you typically might think is just dirt or needles that can't really dispose of. I'll say the public transit stations underground tend to have needles in a couple different places because homeless tend to shelter in there from the cold.

The eastside of town which is more residential, less commercial is fine. It is less visited though just because public transit there is not good and lack of freeway connection. There are other neighborhoods throughout that are fine as well, but it's just the cleanliness of downtown can be hard to deal with after some time when you pay a lot for housing, transit, food, etc.

LA is a lot larger by comparison and people tend to refer to lots of different cities that neighbor LA. Places like Venice, Santa Monica, and Downtown LA can have a lot of homeless in those areas, but not everyone in LA might see that. Work is spread out as opposed to being concentrated in SF, so some residents could live and work in West LA and rarely see some of that. Plus everyone in LA drives, so most aren't riding transit or walking on the sidewalks all that much.

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  • Analyst 1 in S&T - Equities
Dec 29, 2020 - 7:06pm

Similar situation in NYC, but NYC has shittier weather. With the current people running the show at both places, I think the answer is 'no''

Dec 29, 2020 - 8:15pm

Some Georgetown professor predicted this in 2012.

https://www.newgeography.com/content/003024-is-california-new-detroit

Summary: California is becoming the New Detroit thanks to the "Woke" One Party Rule - 1) Growing budget deficit due to spending massive amounts of money on stupid projects; 2) Crumbling public education system (lol apparently they diverted the flow of some river to save 1 type of fish INSTEAD of investing in education); 3) Rejection of business opportunities that would create jobs in the state.

Link to profile.

https://scs.georgetown.edu/programs/71/master-of-professional-studies-in-real-estate/faculty-bio/4120488/robert-cristiano

Unless Californians change themselves, nothing's going to change...

  • Intern in HF - Other
Jan 2, 2021 - 8:17pm

I believe its the only place on earth with spring and fall blend gas. The reasoning behind it is that it preserves some kind of plankton if I remember correctly. 

Controversial
  • Intern in IB - Ind
Dec 29, 2020 - 9:57pm

As someone who was also born and raised in California, I've seen California more and more become a target dummy for conservatives. The irony is that in some ways, the state exemplifies capitalism to the extreme. The labor market is super competitive due to many people moving here from abroad and from other states for certain industries in which California dominates (tech, media, agriculture), creating a dichotomy in which California is heaven for the rich and hell for the poor. Investors and industry titans pour their money into LA/SF real estate and businesses, driving up the cost of living for natives. I certainly see your point about how high taxation and unfriendly policy towards businesses is turning some firms away, and I agree that California should look towards a more pro-business policy.

I can't agree with you on the COVID restriction thing though. This is just a stupid conservative talking point - of course we have the highest number of cases, we're the fucking highest populated state. On a per capita basis regarding cases and deaths, we are doing significantly better than conservatives' golden child: Florida. Let's leave the science to the professionals here.

Most Helpful
  • Analyst 1 in S&T - Equities
Dec 29, 2020 - 10:15pm

I can't agree with you on the COVID restriction thing though. This is just a stupid conservative talking point - of course we have the highest number of cases, we're the fucking highest populated state. On a per capita basis regarding cases and deaths, we are doing significantly better than conservatives' golden child: Florida. Let's leave the science to the professionals here.

Had to quote this for when you inevitably delete it for how stupid and incorrect it is. California's case count per 100k people is 120% higher than FL's. Data is from CDC and updated today, please see photos and link below. You sound like another "listen to the science" punchline type that is completely ignorant of any relevant statistics. I'm bored so feel free to retort, glad to chat about this. 

https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#cases_casesper100klast7days

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  • VP in IB - Ind
Dec 29, 2020 - 10:36pm

This is a stupid counterpoint. You need to look at the overall rate of cases per 100k that has been adjusted for time and not zero in on a 7-day period during which one state is doing worse compared to other states like NY that had Covid burn through a good chunk of the population early on (with 20% of the population fleeing after the fact).
 

Who even knows if case numbers for Florida are legit... they're acting like the China of the US at this point. 

  • Intern in IB - Ind
Dec 29, 2020 - 10:42pm

California's case count per 100k people is 120% higher than FL's. Data is from CDC and updated today, please see photos and link below. You sound like another "listen to the science" punchline type that is completely ignorant of any relevant statistics.

Thanks for the link. You were pretty confident, so this will be fun. The 120% higher figure that you quoted is, unfortunately for you, an average of the last 7 days. This is a good attempt at a strawman and hopefully, others see through it. Neither this pandemic nor both states' lockdown policy is 7 days old, so while this certainly reflects a spike in California's numbers that I'm upset about, these numbers are not a holistic representation of the outcome of both states' respective policy. So let's use the link you gave to take a look at the big picture.

At the top of the page there's a tab to "Compare State Trends". This data lets us compare both 7 Day Averages and Cumulative totals going back 280 days, pretty early on. When looking at 7 Day Averages for both Cases and Deaths/100k, Florida has pretty much always been higher than California except for the recent surge. 

The real whammy is when we look at cumulative totals - even when accounting for CA's recent spike, Florida has about 6% cases more on a per capita basis, and a pretty significant figure of 38% more deaths on a per capita basis.

I see that a VP has jumped in to give a quick counter. Hopefully this made it a little more clear. It sounds like you might need to be less snarky and inform yourself more of the relevant statistics.

Regarding what you said about listening to the scientists, I'll never understand why people make it out to be a bad thing. Let's be real: neither of us are epidemiologists/public health experts who have boots on the ground, we're both simply appealing to authority. The difference is that the authority I appeal to are people who have dedicated years to education and their lives to this work, while the authority you appeal to is some Fox News talking point.

So thanks, I don't think I will delete my post

Dec 30, 2020 - 4:43pm

What I think very few people put together is what industries are doing well and why in California....think about it....tech and media are about the most unregulated sectors of the entire economy. That's true in California and around the country....

...however, as soon as someone starts a new car company in California, they are leaving in less than a decade for other places. Not a friendly place for heavy industry.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Dec 29, 2020 - 11:12pm

it's a shame what shitty governance and woke idiots did to SF and LA, considering geographically they are some of the best locations for weather, beaches, and outdoor activities 

Dec 30, 2020 - 12:27pm

it's a shame what shitty governance and woke idiots did to SF and LA, considering geographically they are some of the best locations for weather, beaches, and outdoor activities 

It sucks that the least competent people to govern have taken over the coasts and islands of the world, making them vacation rather than living prospects. 

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Dec 30, 2020 - 12:52pm

I was told that diversity and inclusion were the recipe for success....

Never discuss with idiots, first they drag you at their level, then they beat you with experience.

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  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
Dec 30, 2020 - 1:37pm

Hundreds of years from now, when human genetics and behavior are much more thoroughly understood, people are going to look back on the diversity obsession of the late United States as the ultimate example of dodo-tier suicidal stupidity.

Neoliberals will be remembered as morally degenerate, oversocialized sociopaths who took a good thing and destroyed it.

Dec 30, 2020 - 2:21pm

Btw, how many URM has China in its leadership?

Never discuss with idiots, first they drag you at their level, then they beat you with experience.

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Dec 30, 2020 - 4:58pm

Hundreds of years from now, when human genetics and behavior are much more thoroughly understood, people are going to look back on the diversity obsession of the late United States as the ultimate example of dodo-tier suicidal stupidity.

Neoliberals will be remembered as morally degenerate, oversocialized sociopaths who took a good thing and destroyed it.

"Hard times create strong men. Strong men create good times. Good times create weak men. And, weak men create hard times."

― G. Michael Hopf, Those Who Remain

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Dec 30, 2020 - 2:32pm

Why is this about diversity and inclusion? What does diversity and inclusion have to do with their dumb pension plan? With people voting for dumb policy that only creat wealth gaps and increase the COL without benefitting commerce OR the general public?

Go, Go, Excel

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Dec 30, 2020 - 2:47pm

Because it's a dumb fetish that in the best case adds nothing of value and in the worst and actual case is an incredible waste of resources and time, while being promoted as a necessary engine for economic prosperity.

If you enact comically bad economic policies and your expectations of economic success are based on astrology, then it's guaranteed you are going to shit.

Never discuss with idiots, first they drag you at their level, then they beat you with experience.

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Funniest
Dec 30, 2020 - 2:29pm

san andreas fault pls hurry

heister:

Look at all these wannabe richies hating on an expensive salad.

https://arthuxtable.com/
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Dec 30, 2020 - 4:51pm

Well, you hope that at some point there could be a major temporary swing in the other direction. We saw this in the late 70s and early 80s throughout the world. The U.S. was headed in the wrong direction with stagflation. UK was headed in a bad direction too with regulation and government. People got fed up and voted in Thatcher and Reagan. Very similar things happened in places like Sweden and New Zealand around the same time period. The countries had swung too far to the left and the economies became uncompetitive. Pendulum swung the other way and corrected the course for at least a decade or two.

People like the policies of the Left as long as they are getting their paychecks and are sipping on $5 lattes.  But when times get tough, it doesn't take much for the average Joe to start seeing that those policies are bullshit. Doesn't happen every time, but I think there is hope of people waking up even in California. Funny thing to me is that the Left has been using the term "woke" for a while.....it's really coming the other way around....people are becoming woke to the crazy Left.

  • Analyst 3+ in RE - Comm
Jan 4, 2021 - 8:20pm

I think most of the average joes in California might have already packed up and moved elsewhere. All that's been sticking behind is the rich and the poor. At this point the rich are also beginning to flee in great number due to the increased taxes on wealth. Too many things are just so upside down in California.

Dec 30, 2020 - 8:02pm

The biggest challenge for CA is that it's quite diverse and not many politicians have been able to really unify the state to make the investments, policy changes, and reform that it needs in order to remain a highly competitive state. However, with global trade shifting over to Asia (where California serves as the gateway to the US), I don't see there being urgency any time soon to tackle those challenges. 

Dec 30, 2020 - 9:48pm

The crazy thing about CA is that it has the highest poverty rate in the country (about 23% pending the year) using the federal government's supplemental poverty measure, which accounts for actual cash flow and resources rather than nominal figures. 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U.S._states_and_territories_by_…

That is legit nuts - think about places like WV or MS - they are at 13% and 16%. 
 

That's a lot of people living in effective poverty despite being home to large industries, many wealthy people, and levying high state taxes for decades. 
 

You hear a lot about CA as its own entity (5th largest economy in the world!) but it's clearly not a tenable political economy model for the rest of the country. 

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Jan 1, 2021 - 4:28pm

Its going to get worse. I was doing some research at work on rent projections and average apartments prices are expected to rise 5-6% yoy while wages will grow maybe 0-3%. We just had elections come up and several propositions appeared on the ballot seeking to trying to figure a way out of our situation. You would think that if things weren't working now, then people would think of voting for policies that cahnge things up, but that's not what the people want. The vast mjority of the population is getting shafted already; worst case scenario, they get shafted in a different position.

The concept of society as a whole has become a joke. I think the people talking about the "libs" and the "neo-libs" are part of the problem, same as anyone identifying as, or regarding to other people as "conservative," "democrat," and "republican."

Go, Go, Excel

  • VP in S&T - FI
Jan 2, 2021 - 2:25pm

How much money do you really need to be making "buy your way out of the problems"?  In LA at least most of the single professional class (engineers, tech, accountants, nurses, any other corporate job) I know lives pretty well (apartment in a nice area, decent car, travels, normal amount of entertainment).  Its harder when you have a family but  I know many people who have been able to find rentals that have enough space for a family and are in a safe area with good schools.  Actually owing a house in one of the more desirable areas in hard but I feel like that how it is in most major cities.       

  • Analyst 3+ in RE - Comm
Jan 3, 2021 - 1:25pm

I think the amount could vary so much depending on what you'd really need. Owning a house with a family in a good suburb, you'd definitely need to be making a household income of $200-$250k. In finance, obviously that's certainly possible, even on one income in a lot of cases. However, for other professions that have lower salary ceilings, I don't know how manageable it is. I'd say it's fine for the most part, but I don't think you're enjoying the best style of living. You'll get good entertainment, amenities and weather but you might be compromising with a longer/expensive commute, both spouses having to work, smaller vacation budgets, or a smaller home. At this point you're really just paying to be in this location and it's less about your style of living. And you'll still need to stash money away for emergency savings, retirement, kids college, a future reno or big purchase.

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