California has been struggling. It has stumbled through the Covid-19 pandemic and recession, afflicted by wildfires, an epidemic of homelessness and stratospheric housing prices. Last year it experienced its first population decline in records going back to 1900. Its latest mess was a costly and unsuccessful campaign to recall Gov. Gavin Newsom.

The state’s problems are real. Nevertheless, there are positive signs.

The first step toward fixing problems is recognizing them, and on that score, Californians have grown increasingly aware of what’s wrong. California is also blessed with abundant resources that enable it to fix problems that would be daunting for less endowed states.

Housing is a good example. Prices are crazy

On Sept. 16, the California Association of Realtors announced that the median sale price in the state in August was $827,940, up 17 percent from a year earlier. Only 23 percent of California households could afford to buy a median-priced home in the second quarter, down from one-third a year earlier, the association announced in August.

“The way our economy is structured, there’s an incredible amount of wealth being minted for a small number of people.”

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