Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Is California F*cked?

M&P comments:
For CA, I'd say a decade [bubble recovery].

The only thing that would help right now is special refis for fucked borrowers facing resets that let them stay in their houses, but the trade up/equity ATM is over, and over for a long, long time.

Without something like that propping up this state, it's going to bellyflop in a way that will shock everyone.

If this fraud of an amnesty is passed, all bets are off, that might not even help.

Every year, the CA legislation tries to find a way around Prop 13. If they manage that, we're talking generations.

Which is why I'm looking at getting the hell out of CA, no matter what, we're pretty much fucked.


Damn straight. I don't think this State has any idea how mobile and how close to going mobile their cash cow residents are right now. Readers remember last week my saying Massachusetts looked good in comparison. M&P is right. There are millions of families who if faced with what is being discussed here will up and leave. Their vaccuum will be filled with the worst social problems ever seen in a democracy. The only thing we may disagree upon is the better than amnesty bill that has risen from the grave. For many if the better than amnesty bill passes it will be the sign to leave rather than a way to hold on a little longer.

90 comments:

Northern Renter said...

First. Murst. Bwahaha.

Northern Renter

The Dude said...

First! I'm in my prime, baby!

Caseys Sex Life said...

Oh Dude - look at the time lag between you and NR. I KNOW you can't be in your prime right now! I have way too much faith in THE DUDE!

king friday the 13th said...

M+P,

Special refis won't help F--d-borrowers if employment doesn't hold up. And, that will be the next shoe to drop. And if not, then wages will stagnate.

The amnesty bill is geared to help supress wages for the next generation. First, it floods the low-end unskilled market with illegals. Then, the H1B provisions in the bill (which few discuss) will flood the high-end skilled market.

Classic pincer movement.

Rob Dawg said...

The "big shoe" is California state revenues. There's a trainwreck of Casey proportions there. So far this fiscal year we've burnned through $99b but only collected $87b. Yeah states run deficits all the time but this is different. There are going to be cutbacks where the cash cow middleclasses live. They won't stand for it and the FDHLRU in the legislator have no clue. They are busy passing global warming regulations.

Mozatta said...

I realized California was screwed the moment I graduated college in 2004 and left for the Midwest.

Glad others are finally catching on.

simi.uber.alles said...

The book "Mexifornia" (shown in the image) is really quite a good look at the situation here. Hanson is intimately familiar with the history of immigration in California and offers a lot of details that get glossed over in the mainstream press. Definitely worth a read.

Big ups to Rob Dawg from Simi. I have a feeling it's gonna be a long hot subprime summer here.

Mouse And Pencil said...

I made the decision this year to bail, I'm looking at next year or the year after.

I love CA, I've lived here for 27 years, but I've had enough.

More later.

king friday the 13th said...

FDHLRU?

In my Gary Coleman (esteemed CashCall spokesperson) voice: "What-you-talkin-bout-bob-dawg"?

(Ex) Train Wreck Watcher said...

Interesting that you mentioned Massachusetts, that's exactly what I think of when I think of a post-Bubble economy. I lived in New England following the late-80's market collapse / early-90's real estate collapse, and it just felt dead. It was as if prosperity had come and gone, and all that was left were memories, the old people, and the young people too lazy to move out. In fact, there are parts of New England that have never recovered from the end of the Industrial Revolution, like Holyoke and New Bedford.

The one (potential) advantage the Southwest has it that it does not have the massive overhang of welfare keeping taxes high and prosperity low. Granted, there are some generous social programs in California, but when the money runs out, there will be cuts, like it or not. And when the jobs disappear, there will not be the massive public housing programs and montly welfare checks that kept huge impoverished populations locked into their communities in the Northeast. There is a significant possibility that the poverty class and the new working class (formerly known as the middle class) will simply move out when there's not work to be found. Property prices will crash (are crashing), local governments will be forced into massive retrenchment, but slowly the foundation will be laid for a more healthy economy.

Rick said...

I got out of CA right at the peak of the market (6/2006). Sold my 1,500sf dump in San Ramon for a whopping $760K, paid $230K in 1995.

Moved to Austin, TX and paid cash for a 3,000sf house with 1.5 acres on a Texas sized creek AND a 2300sf house on the water at Lake LBJ. Property taxes are a higher percentage here, but lower property values makes it a wash. No state income tax so I get to take a take a deduction for sales tax every year, and the salary I make as a software engineer is exactly the same as what I had in CA.

Gas is $2.80/gallon, and I can take the family out to dinner at a nice restaurant for under $50 for the four of us. Austin night life is rockin, and I could not be happier.

Property values are rising here also, my place on the lake appreciated over $100K in the last 12 months and my main home value has risen about $40K.

I grew up in CA and I loved the place, but over the last 2 decades it has turned into a piece of shit state with aging infrastructure, not enough money for schools and a massive defecit of social service resources. In Austin everything is new and we are actually building new highways and infrastructure, not watching things rot in place.

I am so glad I got the hell out of CA when I did and I will never move back. We have so much more available cash in the budget now we can go back anytime we want and actually do the things we always talked about but never had time for because we were sweating every damn day to pay the bills.

Rob Dawg said...

Sorry.
FDHLRU = Fat Dumb and Happy Line Replaceable Unit. An old areospace term for what we in the bubbleworld now call sheeple.

Property Flopper said...

But it's so nice here...

Have to say that I love the SF Bay Area - it is WILDLY expensive to live here, but if you make enough, it is a fantastic place. I've looked at other options, but haven't found anywhere else I'd rather live.

I'm rather mobile, but my wife does Bio-tech patent law... very specialized. Bay Area, San Diego, Cambridge MA... that's about it in the U.S. We don't like winter, so MA is out. :)

SoCal is pretty screwed by the flow of illegals, but NorCal isn't too bad off. We've got a good sized population, but not overwhelming. I'm far more worried about the state's budgetary problems than immigration reform. To be meaningful, we'll need SERIOUS actions taken on a federal level. Not going to happen any time soon (probably not ever).

Anonymous said...

The indians weren't too happy either when the white men were taking their sh@t either!!

What goes around, comes around!


[The new wave of Iraqi immigrants will hit our shores anytime soon!]

Anonymous said...

I lived in Florida for a number of years since 1997. Bought a small condo for $40k, sold it for $135k just two years ago. The cost is much cheaper than California that's for sure.

But I moved back to Cal for one thing..my family! The prices are higher, the taxes are higher and the jobs salaries are higher for the most part. The weather is actually better here in California than Florida (fishing is awesome though).

There really is no place like home, especially when you get tired of the same ol' shit...anyplace can get boring...Florida got that way. And Texas, forget about it....the place is as much as a shithole than Utah or Missouri.

king friday the 13th said...

>> It was as if prosperity had come and gone, and all that was left were memories, the old people, and the young people too lazy to move out.

See Upstate New York. In the late 1980's, Endicott, NY used to have the highest concentration of engineers per capita in the world.

Then, IBM imploded. Area hasn't recovered yet, and probably won't in my lifetime. Real estate is *still* 30 - 50% below the late 80's peaks in absolute terms.

Rob Dawg said...

Rick said...
I got out of CA right at the peak of the market (6/2006). Sold my 1,500sf dump in San Ramon for a whopping $760K, paid $230K in 1995.


I sold all my nonpersonal real estate by april 2006 so I'm halfway there brother.

Moved to Austin, TX and paid cash for a 3,000sf house with 1.5 acres on a Texas sized creek AND a 2300sf house on the water at Lake LBJ.

Exactly. California is suffering from the boiling frog syndrome. They've had the temperature turned up so slowly they don't recognize they are being cooked.

Property taxes are a higher percentage here, but lower property values makes it a wash.

That's assuming that the Prop 13 1% still exisits. Hardly. Anything less than 1.3% is rare. You are correct. The tax load is still lower in general.

No state income tax so I get to take a take a deduction for sales tax every year, and the salary I make as a software engineer is exactly the same as what I had in CA.

Another myth busted; California wages are higher to compensate.

Gas is $2.80/gallon,

Oh, f*ck me now. I'm paying $3.18 for this crap that is 10% air and ruins engines early.

and I can take the family out to dinner at a nice restaurant for under $50 for the four of us. Austin night life is rockin, and I could not be happier.

Yep, $50 is sit down tacos for us. So much for all that cheap labor.

Property values are rising here also, my place on the lake appreciated over $100K in the last 12 months and my main home value has risen about $40K.

Californians willing to pay higher proces perhaps?

I grew up in CA and I loved the place, but over the last 2 decades it has turned into a piece of shit state with aging infrastructure, not enough money for schools and a massive deficit of social service resources.

It isn't a deficit of services. It is a unquenchable demand by parasites.

In Austin everything is new and we are actually building new highways and infrastructure, not watching things rot in place.

Sniff. you mean like California in 1970?

1000 a weak said...

The real bullshit is that asshole Schwarzenegger ran on a platform of tossing out Gray Davis because of the exact same problems that Arnold is causing. Let's repeal the emergency auto registration fee, because god forbid we actually balance the budget!

Seriously, anyone who voted for the Governator should be the first ones out of the state, preferably on their asses, with 0 equity in tow.

I'm saving up cash. There may be a lot of budget cuts coming, but we have a long way to go in terms of trimming the fat. The CA budget is just a microcosm of the US budget.

hoaxBlogger said...

I used to mow my own lawn in NewYork. I don't do that anymore.

I love cheap eats from all the Mexican/Salvadoran/Peruvian/etc places.

Infrastructure? Ever skateboard in Queens? Ever drive on the Interborough?

The Big Dig is a nice change for Bostonians, but they (and we federal taxpayers) paid through the nose for that...only to find that some of it is substandard shite. (falling slabs of concrete; leaking tunnels).

Austin, TX sounds great...too bad I'm a Yankee fan. We do okay in SoCal...but Texas...I don't know...

Anonymous said...

"Which is why I'm looking at getting the hell out of CA, no matter what, we're pretty much fucked."



Just don't come to Oregon. We don't need any more Californians up here, thanks.

Anonymous said...

I've been living in California (Silicon Valley) for almost 10 years now. I've been renting the entire time since, quite frankly, real estate has been progressively out of my means.

I do love it here but it is unlikely that I will be able to settle down. Even with my higher than normal salary, purchasing real estate in this area usually means you will be living in the ghetto enjoying your interest only loan.

I am not sure how housing will fair in this area. Although Google millionaires certainly help buoy the market, I get the impression that the remainder of the population is merely "renting" their homes via exotic mortgage products.

Although I had some opportunities to purchase in recent years, I came to the conclusion that I would rather rent in an area I really like than buy in an area I don't like. Furthermore, being a renter in the Bay Area makes you far more mobile. With our traffic issues, it is so much easier to move closer to work if you are a renter. Also, the prospect of switching jobs is less of an issue when renting. But the fundamental reason for renting in this area is it is WAAAAAAY cheaper than buying. For the rent that I pay in one of the more posh areas of Silicon Valley, I live substantially better than friends of mine who bought in less desirable areas and pay much more on a monthly basis to live.

My notion is that I will milk my high salary here for as long as possible while renting below my means. (Which I currently do) In maybe 5 years time, I can decide what to do from there. If prices here have dropped to more reasonable levels, perhaps then I can buy. Otherwise, I move to a less expensive area and buy a home with cash. Either way, I am not going to place myself at financial risk simply for the pleasure of owning a home.

Oh and yes, if they don't repeal Prop 13 someday, this state will collapse in on itself.

Rob Dawg said...

I'm amazed that people continue to think Prop 13 is bad. Don't get me wrong, it isn't perfect but "bad?" I guess the best way to illustrate is by example. Anyone want any other aspect of their relationship with the taxing arm of governmant to be treated otherwise? Sales tax? Income tax? Come on. Tell me you want to pay the highest income taxes that anyone else in the state is willing to pay.

Mouse And Pencil said...

"Just don't come to Oregon. We don't need any more Californians up here, thanks."

I have two young ladies who would love if I moved to Portland, but no thanks, I've been there. No offense, but Californians are the least of your problems.

One of the few women I'd marry lives in Ashland, but I would'nt be able to find the kind of job I'd need there.

I'm leaning heavily towards Alaska.

Dolph said...

As a CA homeowner (x 2) Prop 13 isn't such a bad thing. It doesn't cover me, but I have no problem with the older homeowners getting that deal.

In the end, if Cali is what M&P and others say it will be, I am stuck because my whole business and career is based here and nowhere else (I won't live in NYC the other hub for Entertainment - better off staying here no offense NY'ers).

Amnesty is passing folks. I hate that it is, but the Republicrats seem very intent to pass this travesty. Canada has it right with immigration - you better bring something to the table if we let you in. In America it's like the virgin settling on the first girl he got laid to. She's not the best he most likely could get, but he will wed his first because he has no self esteem. Same thing applies to America. We take anybody because some ass someplace wants cheap gardening, fruit, etc.

If Cali becomes what you guys say it will be (I hold out some hope it won't - but I feel like I might be too overly optimistic sometimes - am I sounding like Nigel?) then I have to adapt. I make enough now and my wife makes a lot so basically if we had to, we could always move if need be.

Argh...I am so conflicted.

Off topic - Is anybody as mad as I am about the Supremes giving the Prez the power of the checkbook to give any amount he feels like giving to "religious" charities? As a constitutionalist, this bugs me to no end. THIS is congress' role and the gov't has no business deciding what religions get MY tax dollars.

I donate to Catholic charities and will always do so. Why does the US Gov't, with all of it's debt and inefficiencies giving OUR money to religious charities.

This is why I changed political affiliations from GOP to Independent. I am tired of the party of Lincoln, Goldwater and Reagan becoming some sick perverted authoritarian bunch of elitists (they have become exactly what the Dems were in the 1980s and early 90s).

(Ex) Train Wreck Watcher said...

@Rob: "I'm amazed that people continue to think Prop 13 is bad. Don't get me wrong, it isn't perfect but 'bad?' "

I'm not a Californian, but Prop 13 is horribly unfair to the young in favor of the old. While established households--mostly Baby Boomers, but also some elderly--benefit from it, it's younger homebuyers who pay extra to compensate. Every household that pays less means that there's another one out there that pays more.

Like asset appreciation in general, it's one of the many things that has made life very good for the 50somethings and 60somethings, while pricing the younger generation out of the market. Even worse is the fact that the Baby Boomers, despite all the asset appreciation, still aren't ready for retirement. Without the money for retirement, they will linger on their jobs, which not coincidentally are some of the better jobs available, leaving few good jobs available for younger workers.

I don't think the older generation realizes just how much their standard of living has been enjoyed at the expense of the rising generation. Harsh, but that's how I see it.

Dolph said...

M&P,

LOL, I like visiting Oregon but could never live there. Everywhere you go in this country there are issues of concern. I LIKE Mississippi as a state (believe it or not) but I don't like some of the hypocrisy and stuff I see there from some sectors of the population.

I am also partial to Washington State as well as Colorado.

For all those people talking up Texas, I promise you this...if Amnesty passes, Texas is also in for a BIG problem themselves.

serinitis said...

There is a lot less to the amnesty than people think. You can get a Z card now, which means you are not an illegal, but you are trackable. You can then go home to pay $5000 and apply for a green card. You can then wait 8 -13 years for the current backlog to be cleared.

I don't see that many illegals applying for it.

If they were willing to scrap the current waiting list and create a new points based waiting list, it would become more popular.

Sprezzatura said...

I think you underestimate how truly mobile those cash cow families are. Especially if they're raising kids and/or have roots in the area. It's easy to sit around the living room and grumble, "Damn I want out," but a lot harder to pack everything you own into that U-Haul and leave behind friends, family, and jobs for the unknown.

SoCal has issues, to be sure. But that doesn't mean that the OC is representative of the rest of the state.

High-tech, which by right ought to be one of the most distributed industries out there since everyone's connected, is not leaving Silly Valley any time soon. As much as people try to push Austin or Boston or even NYC as the "next Valley" nothing is going to replace the real Valley. The concentration of cash, companies, and talent is what makes this area so productive.

Dimes said...

I am tired of the party of Lincoln, Goldwater and Reagan becoming some sick perverted authoritarian bunch of elitists (they have become exactly what the Dems were in the 1980s and early 90s).

Agreed. I am totally DONE with the GOP.

Mouse And Pencil said...

I did'nt bring up Prop 13 as a bad thing, in itself - it is flawed, and could probably use a rewrite, but the danger is what happens if Sacramneto gets around it, and starts raising taxes - lots of overextended Californians would be in a lot of trouble.

Basically, I see staying in California as meaning giving up all I have expected, and learning a new reality where Spanish will required for day to day living, you will need to live in gated communities, and taxes WILL go up to cover the "shortfall" they will experience as housing sales disapear. It's *already* being discussed, that they have no plans for the tax shortfall, and that raising taxes is the only way out, or more junk bonds by Arnold on the backs of our great grandkids.

If you stay in CA, I would seriously consider gun ownership.

As for Republicans, I've been peeking at some of the hardcore GOP websites, like FreeRepublic.com, and they are PISSED at Bush. Like, destruction of the party, elect Hillary just to slap him in the face pissed - I was'nt surprised, my mother is a Rush Limbaugh Republican and she wants Bush impeached over immigration - and she's starting to doubt him on everything else, as well.

The GOP sold out to private business interests long ago, the stench fills the room now, no matter how much perfume they pour on it. The party of Lincoln ended with Lincoln, now it's just the same old whores, no matter the party label. CA Republicans are kept around for their sheer quaintness and oddity, and scapegoats.

Not that Democrats are much better. Once they lose their GOP punching bags, they need to show up to work with something to offer, too.

Whoever gets elected is inheriting a shitstorm of global proportions, but i don't feel sorry for any of them.

Euclase said...

I am just so tired of the prop 13 bashing. For almost 30 years now I have paid property taxes, not on one house but three. For at least 15 years of the last 20 years I paid three times as much property taxes as the average person on my principle residence. Now due to the 600k shitboxes my taxes are considerably lower than the latest real estate investors and prop 13 whiners.


All that aside, my property taxes pay for schools. I do not have any children so it's really a rip off scam.

These old people with low taxes have paid them all their lives, they paid for your schools you selfish ingrate. When they bought
they paid the same tax rate as you whine about now.

Finally, prop 13 is designed to prevent politicians from taxing old people out of their homes, which is what brought about prop 13 in the first place.

So please whiners STFU! If you want to do something constructive eliminate the socialist public skools and we can dispense with the property taxes.

serinitis said...

Taxes are like germs. In the long run the successful ones do not kill the host.

If they got rid of Prop 13, businesses that have a very low property tax would see their taxes rise to what their newer competitors are paying. New households would see a drop in their taxes that would be offset by a rise in older households taxes. Some old folks would be taxed out of their homes, but home ownership would be become practical for an equivilant number of younger folks. Overall taxes would go up a small amount so government could use taxes rather than borrowing to pay current expenses.

OK said...

eliminate property tax!
replace it with higher state income tax, thats totally fair and will 'bail out' housing for the reic.

serinitis said...

Prop 13 also concentrated power at the state rather than leaving it at the local level.

OK said...

I will sum up CA:

1. crappy house cost 600k, nice=1m

2. still cant send kids to public school(overrun with non english speakers)

3. if you work more than 30 miles from home=commuting nightmare

4. Prop13 locks you into long commute or lower paying local job/take yer pick!

whata hella mess we have here!

that being said if you dont have kids and are renting its a pretty nice place! make yer money and get out, a very common plan.

Euclase said...

@ok

We already have a high income tax rate 9.3% in addition to sales tax
ranging from 7.25 to 8.5 plus a property tax set at 1% of purchase price.

I am sick of paying taxes, I get nothing for my money. I have no sympathy for the whiners who voluntarily paid 600k plus for a shit box. They knew the what the tax would be.

Anonymous said...

"All that aside, my property taxes pay for schools. I do not have any children so it's really a rip off scam."

I'm glad you brought up the notion of schools. Correct me if I am wrong, but didn't California once have one of the best school systems in the country PRIOR to proposition 13 being enacted? And now where are we? 46th. That's just swell.

Folks, Prop 13 was a triumph of greed and selfishness over common sense. No if, ands or buts about it. This state is consistently running in the red while at the same time squeezing the middle class to the point of oblivion. I am sorry, but if Prop 13 (and associated NIMBY measures) that exist throughout this state were a "non-issue", then I doubt we would have blogs similar to this one complaining about the issues with the infrastructure in California.

I don't profess to be the most intelligent and informed individual around. And I am certainly no economist. But I defer to the expertise of others in this realm.
For those that care to recall, when the Governator got elected, he immediately asked Warren Buffett for advice on how to balance the budget. And what was Warren's first suggestion? You guessed it: repeat Prop 13.

The logic: you cannot have a well funded tax system if it is not inflation adjusted. And that is what prop 13 does. To compensate, taxes are taken from sales and incomes. So in the end, as a previous poster alluded to, it is the younger generation that ends up holding the tab. Doesn't appear to be very fair and equitable to me.

I would love to see how current home owners would scream to blue heaven if real estate dropped enough whereby their property tax rates based off of Prop 13 were HIGHER than current housing valuations warrant. I bet you'd be seeing amendments to that to Prop 13 hitting legislation pretty damn fast.

Euclase said...

@ anon

If values fall below purchase price, the county appraisers will revalue it, but you may have to request a new assessment.

Euclase said...

By the way, the quality of the education has no correlation to dollars per pupil spent, or class size.

Public schools are shitty and so is the NEA.

LossMitPro said...

Dolph @ 1:50 PM:
”I like visiting Oregon but could never live there. ... I LIKE Mississippi as a state (believe it or not)... I am also partial to Washington State as well as Colorado.”

Although my family have been Californians since days of the Spaniards (with a last name like mine, go figure) and I was born and raised in Southern California, growing up literally a block from the beach (Newport/Huntington). I too have a mind to move to either Colorado or Alaska, not only because I absolutely love snow and snow sports (skiing, dog sledding, skijoring, snowshoeing, etc.). But property taxes (on land) and BS here in Cali are getting a bit much, not to mention the building bureaucracies (strangling regulations for private builders).

My preference though is Alaska, where I can buy 1.5 to 2 lakeside acres for under $175k with a whole lot less construction compliance to contend with. I mean, for another $200k I could build a $900k home in comparable California terms... Fit a STOL S-7 with pontoons, park it on the lake in front of the house, and I’m good to go! ;)

So yeah it’s like that for me too, getting sick of the Cali-crap.

~Mark

Mouse And Pencil said...

Funny how a lot of what angers people is taxation without representation...and it did'nt take that much to have tea bales hit the Boston Harbor.

Property Flopper said...

Two problems with Prop 13:

First (as I stated before) it was sold as protecting the old widow, but was truely for the benefit of corps. They are still paying 1970's rates.

Solution: Amend to be residential only?

Second issue: Two identical houses sitting right next to each other (my personal view of hell - I HATE tract housing, but...). Both owner occupied, both owned by 60 year old couples - one owner pays three to four times the taxes of the other.

The difference? When they bought. Someone who stays put pays less than someone who moves (and yes, there is a one time exception that allows the owner to move after age 50, but only once).

It does tend to hit younger buyers harder. I was eleven when it passed in 1978, so I couldn't buy a house then. But what about the case above though? Same age, same everything... one just moved for a new job (or any other reason). Should that person pay more?

Pros and cons for either side - I find it interesting (and not surprising) that people who bought long ago support it and people who bought more recently (or haven't yet) are against.

Mouse And Pencil said...

@LMP

Shhhh, we don't want too many people going up there! :) Don't talk about the lack of a state income tax, oil stipends, and lack of crime!

My brother has a house south of the airport, looking out over the bay, with the most spectacular view imaginable. He paid a lot for it, by Alaskan standards, but it's worth every penny.

I'd kill for the house he sold, north of downtown, a classic a-frame 4 bedroom with basement apartment to help on the mortgage, on an acre, for 90K. Granted, that was 6 years ago, and they've had a little run up, but you can get a lot of house and land up there for your buck...if you can take the weather.

And while he's near downtown...he has moose in his backyard.

Property Flopper said...

Euclase said...

> All that aside, my property taxes
> pay for schools. I do not have any
> children so it's really a rip
> off scam.

Did you get an education?

Consider what you are paying now (and have been paying) as repayment for your own education. Those schools were paid for by the generation before, we are now paying for the next generation.

I do not have kids either, but I don't begrudge school funding - ignorance is far more expensive. That said, I don't think we're getting value for our dollar, but that's another story.

Euclase said...

@Property Flopper,

Did I get an education? Now really what do you think? My parents paid my tuition where black robed gaelic speaking tyrants fresh off the boat from Ireland with some quaint ideas about discipline educated the crap out of all 60 students per class.

So yes, my parents paid twice. Once for the public fool system and a second time for me.

What you suggest is socialism/marxism, I personally do not care for it. Also, in case you hadn't noticed the quality of public education here in Kalifornia is abysmal.

Property Flopper said...

Euclase -

VERY nice description. I had nuns myself. Still can't see a penguin without cringing.

We only had 40 per class, but it was dead silence and complete attention. Any breach met with the yard stick.

Side note: If you tell a woman she has to wear the silly outfit, never gets to have sex but in exchange, she gets a class full of kids and a yardstick to enforce her will... well, any women who takes that bargin is NOT someone you should allow around children.

I do have to admit, they were serious about the education... we learned.

serinitis said...

There are two primary causes of the suckiness of Ca schools. The 1st was Prop 13. It gutted local government's ability to support its self and made it dependant on state government. School districts became dependant on state financing and subject to state control, but local people were elected to run them. the diffusion of responsibility made it so no one was responsible for fixing schooling issues.

The second was the Ca. supreme court said that if the state was paying for schools, it had to treat all schools equally. The result of this is a rich neighbor hood cannot raise its taxes to pay for school improvements or higher salaries for teachers. Any additional money rich districts raised went into the state pot and were distributed to all schools.

Dolph said...

Euclase,

That's a generalization. LA Unified sucks where most of the schools in places like OC are good or above national standards.

Paying for public schools is NOT socialism. Welfare is socialism, food stamps are socialism. ALL free countries the world over have public schools. If you want America to continue to be a player in the world economy we NEED public schools.

You fix the ones that fail by holding teachers and admins responsible. Problem here is the unions won't allow it. The other problem is parents who don't give a crap about their kid's education.

Sorry, I don't mind paying for a fresh mind's education. I DO mind paying for things like welfare that only enable others to do whatever it takes to avoid working. Kids deserve a chance and direction...when they become adults what they do with it falls into the realm of personal responsibility and we, as a society, should not support those who don't want to do what is necessary to succeed.

I don't believe private schools are for everybody and that is why America has a better school system than it gets credit for. Jack Welch recently wrote an article for Business Week where even he said our schools are not that bad....education is what you take out of it, if the parents don't take responsibility for their kids, then they have NOBODY to blame but themselves.

One other point...to frame my example - my friend is a staunch Bush-Republican (go figure). He sues EVERYBODY for EVERYTHING because he can't accept responsibility for his failures in business and such. Anyway, his kid is a complete LOSER. He is not married to the mother but he supports them. The kid and mom play nothing but Warcraft together. The kid has ZERO social skills and mom won't unplug the computer and force him to do homework. He's failing. What does dad do? He's trying to start a class action against the video game industry because he believes they made his kid this way.

THESE PEOPLE are the scourge of our society. Talk about taking and taking with no inheirent value for any of us. Schools are not the problem...bad parents are.

Property Flopper said...

Euclase Said...

> What you suggest is socialism/
> marxism, I personally do not
> care for it.

What I suggest is that everyone should pay the same rate. Hardly socialism or marxisim.

People would flip if income tax rates were set by when you first started working. Yet that's exactly what you get with Prop 13.

Would you mean paying for education is socialisim / marxisim? Hardly. We pay taxes for "common good" items such as roads, police / fire protection, etc. Education falls under this.

People choose (by voting) what they want to fund - roads would never be built if we all had to build our own (alternative is toll roads EVERYWHERE, including surface streets).

Police charge a fee to investigate a crime? It's an alternative way to pay for their services, but hardly a reasonable way. Only pay the fire dept. if your house is burning? Too late then.

Should we get rid of public education? That would certainly solve a lot of problems... watch the illiterate masses we'd end up with then.

Dolph said...

BTW - Snowflake syndrome runs rampant in a lot of schools. Ask a lot of teachers who care...they call the parents to say Little Jimmy is failing because he isn't doing his homework and they get mad and argue that it's NOT their kid so it must be the schools.

Sometimes I wonder. Again, it all falls on the parents. Sure, there are sucky teachers out there, but if the parents were on their game, they'd be more involved and challenging the schools to do what's necessary to improve.

Property Flopper said...

Dolph -

Well said. I think you hit the point better than I.

Dolph said...

Property Flopper -

I thought about that very thing. I like Ron Paul a lot, but the one thing disagree with him on is he wants to abolish the Dept of Education.

If we want to be a contender in this world, we need uniform standards. If only the politicians and parents cared and raised those standards. We cannot rely on the states in this case to do the job because some states would be worse than others.

As for abolishing public schools? Stupid idea. WE ARE NOT some crap third world country and public schools are not a bad investment in infrastructure. If only we can get politicians to stop funding pork, we wouldn't be having these discussions ;)

You can manage the schools with Prop 13. The key is finding funding solutions to help make the schools better. The lotto has helped somewhat.

Dolph said...

Thanks PF...I was a bad student, but I grew to appreciate what schools go through since I am actively involved in my community.

We need schools. Illiterate masses would be devastating in a world economy. They would also make this country unstable in a way that would make the illegal problem a drop in the bucket.

Euclase said...

@Property flop


You should intuitively know that if you paid for the services you use, such as your child's education, you would care very much about the quality and the cost.

Instead we have a system where those who do NOT use the system pay through the nose for services not received and the quality is pure crap. Those you do use the system , often pay nothing and evidently get precisely what they pay for.
Please don't give me that NEA canard the quality equals dollars spent, you should know better.

Unfortunately, 95% of the people are pretty much incapable of thinking for themselves.

Sharky said...

Californians:

I feel your pain, but y'all made a very great deal of the mess that you're in.

Start with your "Sanctuary" cities and counties.

Won't ask if a lawbreaker is an illegal immigrant, and will cough up your gold to provide all the services thata citien or a legal would get.

Hmmm, I'm old enough to remember the last time there were states and cities that refused to honor Federal law...specifically the 14th, 15th and 16th Amendments.

Eisenhower sent the paratroopers into Little Rock to enforce those laws and integrate the schools.

JFK, RFK, LBJ and Hoover infested the Piney Woods with the FBI to destroy any organized opposition to the Fed's agenda.

Nowadays? Hell. cities will declare hemselves "Sanctuaries", and then whine moan and cry if the Feds don't send them more of other peoples' money to subsidie their gardeners, maids, and cabana boys.

I guess the only time the Feds will use the bayonet to enforce the laws is when the bayonets are pointed against Southern White people.

You like illegal immgrants?

Then YOU pay for 'em...and YOU drown in them.

Euclase said...

@sharky

you are about to be called a racist,
but not by me.

Sharky said...

euclase:

"Please don't give me that NEA canard the quality equals dollars spent, you should know better."

I love that line...refer them to the Washington DC Public Schools.

A one point the HIGHEST per pupil spending per student in the nation, and the LOWEST SAT scores in the country...at the same time.

But who's fooling who?

Unions ain't nothing more than a bunch of Management Shills play-acting at representing their membership.

LossMitPro said...

Mouse and Pencil @ 2:53 PM:
”...you can get a lot of house and land up there for your buck...if you can take the weather. ...he has moose in his backyard.”

Hear ya about Alaska, but I’ve always been partial to colder climates anyway. And wildlife is no worries either (although moose can get radical if one pushes them too much). I have deer and raccoon come right up to the house here in the Sierras, and we even have a large cat problem presently (big cougar has been on the prowl nights). But the thing we didn’t have up until recently was much crime, but that’s changing too.

But I do love Alaska!

A few years ago I had the pleasure of touring the Denali working dog camp (Forest Rangers use dogs up there for patrolling), and flew over pristine wilderness and tons of lakes. Guess that’s when I first was attracted to the state, notwithstanding its other benefits over California.

~Mark

Euclase said...

@Dolph and Property Flopper

Perhaps neither of you noticed, but we already have illiterate masses,
been that way for sometime now.

Sum ting wong!

Maybe it's the NEA mission statement, which oddly enough is not about educating the masses of asses, (schools get paid per ass per seat)
but obtaining the highest pay and benefits for their members.

Anonymous said...

@Dolph

Well said. One can place all the adequate funding into the school system they wish. But without effective parenting, it is all moot.

Snowflake is a prime example. The typical Generation Y'er that believes they can achieve anything and have a massive sense of entitlement. How did he get this way? Quite frankly, because Madame Olga, i.e. "Mom" probably coddled him throughout his youth and refused to chastise him effectively when he went wayward. The result: well, it speaks for itself.

Now that our school system has been effectively "effemized", kids no longer get "bad" grades. Cause, oh boo hoo, its too "degrading". It’s too "hurtful". Then they grow up to be murse-wearing, debt-ridden has bins.

Sharky said...

Back on topic:

When I was in California, over twenty years ago, now, the High Desert was being colonized by refugee families from LA.

Problem is, they were recreating the very environments that they were escaping from.

I haven't been back to Yucca Valley and Joshua Tree,(and don't expect to, either, but if what I saw happening in Palm Desert and Cathedral City in 1985 are any indicators of how it would proceed, folks are prolly gettin' fed up with "North of the Joshua Tree" by now.

Dolph said...

Euclase...

Never said there weren't. I said we need to hold schools and administrators to a higher standard. I think most teachers care, work hard and are frustrated by lame administrators.

Illiteracy is happening because either A) Parents don't give a crap, B) Administrators don't catch the problem kids because as you say, they need the money for that kid and C) Illegals are a big problem in western lying states. Yes, they aren't the #1 problem in schools, but they are definitely a problem.

Again, it's all about personal responsibility. If the parents can't get involved with their kid's lives, then we will always have the "illiterate masses."

What I am referring to in the previous post is go ahead and cancel all the public schools. We will then have such an overwhelming number of unskilled, untrained, uneducated people that it will make this country more unstable than ever.

Paying for schools is fine. It's high time we find a way to make the administrators and parents responsible for shit schools.

Property Flopper said...

Euclase:

> Please don't give me that NEA
> canard the quality equals dollars
> spent, you should know better.

Oh God no. That's been shown time and again to be a false association.

Dolph hit far closer to the point - quality comes from parents who care.

Public education is what drives a developed nation. Illiterate masses do not make a vibrant economy, nor do the invent / innovate.

I would disagree that we pay for something we are not using - I use the public education system every day... I went to private schools, but did use the state schools for college. I don't have children to use the public schools - BUT...

Every day I deal with educated people. At the bank, my work, etc. I'm typing on a computer developed in the US... all thanks to an educated population.

It's worth it to me to help fund that.

I like driving on roads, like knowing the police keep my neighborhood safe, like to know the fire dept. is minutes away... all that is worth paying for.

Good points were made above regarding unions / state vs. local control / etc. There are a number of problems with the public education system, but I seriously doubt many here would say that public education itself is a problem.

Anyhow... about to disconnect for a while. Happy to continue discussion tomorrow.

Goodnight all...

Dolph said...

Sharky,

C'mon man...I never wanted these "sanctuaries." They are created by a combination of bleeding heart, liberal politicians and the Catholic church.

I used to live in L.A. Did I have a say in this so-called sanctuary? No. So please...don't blame me for the mess. I blame those who don't vote and allow these PR whores like Villaraigosa and Gavin Newsom to get elected. I don't mind Dems, I just don't like extremists in any party.

You would be correct on some of your observations, but I hope you know a lot of us had no choice.

Sharky said...

euclase:

"Maybe it's the NEA mission statement, which oddly enough is not about educating the masses of asses, (schools get paid per ass per seat)
but obtaining the highest pay and benefits for their members."

What a great idea! I wish they'd actually DO that.

Like their contracts...they're not worth shit if they're not enforced.

Tell me this...do you know of a school, ANY school, where the NEA or AFT local steward or Business Agent walks in and the Principal begins packing out his oer her desk?

Any school...I'll wait.

(The Missus works in the schools, and is an AFT local member.) Her principal had her and her other bargaining unit membres doing all sorts of shit that wasn't in their contract, see?

That should be grounds for instant overthrow of the Administrator.

Ain't never seen that happen, though.

Because the way to make real money in Publick Edumacation is NOT to Teach, but to Administer.

Euclase said...

@Dolph

Public schools cost way too much and produce shit. You are right, some of the problem is the parents, some of the problem is illegals, some of the problem is the teachers union, some of the problem is by design, ignorant masses are easier to control.

A surprising number of people believed that "from each according to his ability, to each according to his need" was part of the bill of rights.

Whatever.....

I am sick of paying for it and all the rest of the current PC culture.

Dolph said...

Property Flipper,

Good point. Nobody is defending the unions here. Problem with Unions is that they do what they can to protect their members, no matter how bad they are. That is the unfortunate function of them.

My wife is a teacher. She is NOT in love with the system. A lot of her friends are teachers and they all seem good at their jobs. They all care. #1 gripe - administrators who play politics to keep their jobs. #2 is parents.

She's taught at good schools where the admin is proactive and pushing the teachers for higher results. She's worked in bad ones where parents couldn't give one f--- for their own kids education. To them school is a babysitter.

I've always believed teachers should make more than these lame politicians and administrators (outside of prinicpal who is a CEO of sorts).

I could rant on about the money we are spending in Iraq vs. using it to make this country a more prosperous place but I'll spare you guys. Before anybody assumes I am more Ted Kennedy than Barry Goldwater, know this...I believe in America and without schools giving all kids a chance to hit their potential, we will be doomed.

DC schools suck...and I firmly believe it's because they aren't a state. The other problem is that the District is throwing money at problems instead of doing what NYC did years ago. Bloomberg challenged the administrators and pushed for higher standards asap by taking over the schools. He seems to have done a good job at getting results as NYC schools are much improved.

LA Unified sucks but I am glad Villaraigosa didn't get control. The guy is a glory hound mayor with no substance. I fear for LAUSD with him controlling it.

Look at Anaheim Unified HSD. All but the one has improved API scores. Two of the schools are Top 10 in the state. One was recognized nationally.

I can go on and on but the point is AUHSD schools have systems in place to get parents involved. LAUSD just promotes kids so they can make their budgets. AUHSD does not promote kids with less than C averages. LAUSD caves to pressure from parents anytime they try to crackdown on anything.

I use Anaheim as an example to show what can be done when parents and teachers work together for the kids.

Sharky said...

dolph:

"They are created by a combination of bleeding heart, liberal politicians and the Catholic church."

Let's not kid ourselves, either, though. Business conservative politicians catering to agribusiness had a lot to do with it also.

This Immigration fight is a defining moment for the GOP...i it the Party of the Rockefellers and Goldwaters,(men from family money), or the Party of Nixon and Reagan,(self starters from working class and middle income backgrounds)?

Once you get the internal class struggle going on in the GOP, you'll see the issue for what it is, and what's at stake.

" No. So please...don't blame me for the mess. I blame those who don't vote and allow these PR whores like Villaraigosa and Gavin Newsom to get elected."

I'm not "blaming" you, bud...I know it sounds like that, though.

I am pointing out the obvious, your boat is sinking because of the way your polises have run things, and I'm not willing to keep bailing you out of this self-created man-made catastrophe.

My advice? Steal the lifeboat.

Get the hell out and bring your productive ass to somehere UNLIKE where you left.And adapt yourself to fit the environment you move to.

Let the decline accelerate, so that it crashes under its' own weight.

The quicker it sinks, the quicker it can be raised and salvaged...

Dolph said...

Euclase,

Fair enough. You and I do agree on some things. I don't think schools are PC, per se, but I do agree that PC culture has hurt this country worse than anything.

I am sorry you feel that way, but I respect that you engaged me on this issue.

Dolph said...

Sharky,

Good points. I don't think you blame me at all (just used that line as a debating/rhetorical device) but I have contingency plans should this place get worse.

I guess since I live here I do see some good things. If this amnesty passes, yes, there will be a shit storm that could force me to adapt and go someplace else.

Euclase said...

Sharky:

I don't know about teachers unions, here in California, teachers are pretty well paid for working eight months a year.

Sorry I don't have any sympathy for teachers and the hue and cry about how underpaid they are. Another canard.

Dolph said...

Sharky...btw: Agreed on the agribusiness GOP. I am more than willing to pay more for my fruit and my gardening needs, LOL.

Take care dude...appreciate the discussion.

Sharky said...

@ dolph;

No problem...good luck.

@ euclase:

I'm not familiar with CA teacher pay structures, but dig a little deeper.

The propaganda may tell you that they make say...8 grand a month.

Everybody would hear that factually accurate but perhaps misleading figure and automatically assume that it's 8k monthly times 12 months.

It very well MAY be 8k times 8 months....which wouldn't be so "Wow" would it?

In my wife's system, they have the option of taking pay through the summers and "winter holidays"(PC for Christmas Vacation).

Taking this option drops her 12x monthly take-home to almost "Hobbyist" levels.

And like I said...tell me the school where the Principal got canned when the Union showed up.

For that matter, show me the school where the Principal got shit-canned because the PTA wanted him or her gone.

That "Parental Involvement" meme is more schlock...they want parents involved only insofar as being rubber-stamping bake-salesmen cheerleaders for the Administrator's notions.

Any more than that narrowly-defined ghetto, and watch how fast you get labelled a Troublemaking Busybody.

Euclase said...

Sharky:

I know exactly what they make I have about two dozen as customers, also you are correct the administrators make much more.

Rob Dawg said...

For that matter, show me the school where the Principal got shit-canned because the PTA wanted him or her gone.

Mesa Union. Twice.

Euclase said...

Actually, I know a principal that got canned, it had to do with the way she handled a problem with a student who came to school with a knife.

She had been a teacher, got some more education and made it into administration.

Dolph said...

Sharky,

The average teacher pay in LA/OC tends to be about $70 grand/year for 10 years minimum experience (depends on district, of course, but a 20 year teacher could top out at 95-100K). If you teach special ed or anything with a special masters degree, you get a small stipend on top of that.

Sure, teachers might only work 8 months/year but they do a lot of work in the evenings calling parents, grading papers, planning their classes.

It isn't easy work at all. Admins make much more. I DO NOT feel sorry for them since a lot of them are the reason why schools aren't always at peak efficiency.

Dolph said...

The Lean On Me Principal was fired famously for challenging lazy parents and teachers who didn't conform to his style of management.

I believe his name was Joe.

Anonymous said...

The illegal wetbacks have muddied the good American gene pool, especially in Mexifornication.

Sharky said...

@euclase:

"Actually, I know a principal that got canned, it had to do with the way she handled a problem with a student who came to school with a knife"

Was it the teachers' union that got her canned?

@dolph:

"The average teacher pay in LA/OC tends to be about $70 grand/year for 10 years minimum experience"

Hmmm, and what does a journeyman plumber make in LA?

Or a 10 year veteran auto mechanic?

" but they do a lot of work in the evenings calling parents, grading papers, planning their classes."

This is true...I have seen this.

Dolph said...

Sharky,

I've known plumbers who freelanced for the equivalent of $30-40/hour. People do pay it because he is licensed and has a good reputation. Figure he does 4 homes a day - 2 hours each he would make 320/day. He could earn up to 1500/week. Not bad.

As for the auto mechanic...depends. The guy at Pep Boys or Firestone makes somewhere around $15-20/hour. Figuring in a full day x 5 he makes 1000-1200 or so a week. To work one of those jobs, you have to apprentice someplace and then get a license.

A California State Assemblyman makes almost $111K/year on top of any sweet passive income they pull in from businesses or other interests.

Teachers are paid well in this state but not so well in smaller states, but then again - the SOL is lower so it could still prove to be good pay after all.

Sac RE Agent said...

Personal residence sold a few months back. Rental property to be sold in August after renters move out.

Real estate numbers don't look too good. It's time to take your equity in California.

Lou Minatti said...

Rob,

I think you and I have had disagreements over this. This morning while driving in I heard two things that put a bitch-slap on me. These two things didn't make me change my mind necessarily, but it made me view things in a very alarming light. To put it in a nutshell, it doesn't matter what you or I or anyone else here thinks.

Rob Dawg said...

Lou,
are you talking about the wholesale abandonment of the democratic process by the Federal gov't? Again?

Optimus Subprime said...

Listen, Californians. I have lived in your state and lived in the northeast. I will tell you with unambiguity that no Californian is going to like Massachusetts. It's just not your scene.

Head straight for NY/NJ/Connecticut or skip the region entirely and check out Minneapolis/St Paul MN -- a very underrated (and underdeveloped) city that deserves close notice for having an incredibly high standard of living, high education standards, great jobs, and a stable housing market (if you ignore the condo bust that just happened).

Mouse And Pencil said...

Well, it looks like amnesty is on it's way through congress, I'm sickened how they are ramrodding this through, despite a 76% against rating across teh country.

I also read that Carl Rove was taking money away from Republican candidates *4 years* ago if they talked about immigration. Motherfuckers. That has ignited a new, deep burning anger.

GOP, fuck you. Never a dime or a vote, ever.

And lets start using honest language. This is not about immigration, this is about illegal aliens. They're warping the language, and it pisses me off. This whole farce actually fucks over *legal* immigrants, in favor of illegal aliens.

We don't even know the full text of the bill yet, and that scares the living shit out of me, we already know that it promises *college tuition* to illegals and their families, access to all the public tit programs...

We are so fucked it's not even funny. I guess the last hope is that Congress kills it, but with the White House buying votes and threatening candidates with withholding money...motherfuckers....

I tell you one thing, our election rules need to change. We need spending limits, and strict laws on campaign cash, it's completely out of control and gives too much power.

Every senator who voted for cloture yesterday needs to be rode out of town on a rail, tarred and feathered, and branded with a large "WHORE" across their foreheads.

I mean, jesus christ, the fuddy duddy Republicans are talking civil war and protests in the streets.

Anonymous said...

I live in SoCal and I bought my home many years ago.

I do agree that many new people buying in SoCal face a stiff upper battle with housing.

Me, I bought many years ago and I enjoy pennies on the dollar for state tax on my house (thanks prop 13 :-) AND I bought at the low end.

Anyone buying my home today would have to me making 2-3x what I make - at least 200,000k to afford my house.

So I get to enjoy the wonderful weather, the cheap housing AND tax rate. What more can I ask for?

If you are new in SoCal, you better bend over. Otherwise, us long time residents enjoy SoCal to it's fullest.

I am very happy :-)

vegas crash watcher said...

All taxation is extortion and all Americans who support any government deserve to suffer, and they will in the oncoming deflation.
Many of us and our money are too mobile to be taxed by statist scum.

Sol Rosenberg said...

Don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

Rob Dawg said...

Careful, Sol. The people with something to lose are the ones planning on leaving. You may find yourself the last sheep in a state full of wolves.