Saturday, January 12, 2013

The View from SanDiego/SoCal;A Prosperous,Content Populous In President Obama's New America

There's no use calling for a forward looking, policy based conservatism free from ridiculous invective and flights of fantasy ( "President Obama will declare Marshall Law in two months" etc etc) and then not  honestly describe what is right in front of ones eyes in the cause of running down the administration, no matter what the truth may be in reality.

If such an approach causes me to lose the followers of this blog and Twitter followers so be in-I am not going to be a hypocrite and if a remnant remains then hopefully they would be the sort of people who would be spearhead of a conservative renaissance.

I was fortunate to have spent three weeks in San Diego and points north and was struck by the substantial contrast in both mood and economy with my previous extended visit there two years ago. 

Two years ago literally ever second house in the street where I stayed in previously prosperous Del Mar was for sale and had been for some time. This visit every one of those houses had been sold and from what I could see every open garage was stuffed with the visible signs of prosperity-jet boats/ski's/second or third cars etc.

La Jolla at night was a blaze of lights and luxury and during the day the shopping malls in old La Jolla were jammed with the best dressed people I have ever seen in malls anywhere. The Apple shop was almost unmoveable in being so jammed and the high end luxury goods retailers were obviously busy.Every restaurant I went to from still hippy flavored Encenitas to the boisterous boutique breweries/pizza parlours in buzzy Solano were jammed.

Lest it be said that these were the haunts of the still well off, both of the magnificent San Diego zoos were utterly packed-one had to walk huge distances from the car parks to join long lines of lower income folks from all ethnicities to get in. The same applied to Legoland and of course Disneyland. 

Regarding ethnicities it was a source of amazement to me, being a New Yorker that, literally,  I saw no Blacks at all in La Jolla and only a few at the zoo amongst all those people. The Hispanic population is truly dominant without question to the point of, what appears to be to me, complete exclusion of other minorities (if one can call Hispanic's such in Socal).

Not everything was perfect of course-in new La Jolla ( a huge amount of Chinese/Indian students live there-a sign that these countries still value the USA for education) some roads were rutted/holed and watching the local television news I counted three murders reported in the space, literally, of half an hour. 

On the other hand the media advised that there were significant signs the entire Californian economy was recovering and that silicon valley in particular was expanding.The glut of houses for sale that I saw last time was nowhere in view, and beach side houses were in the multi-million dollar sale category.

The general mood was upbeat, the retail service was exemplary, the locals were polite to a fault. One could wander the streets in complete safety (to bemused looks from the endless stream of drivers viewing a walker who they must have guessed was an out of towner).

My observations are of the reality in the Socal I saw-from San Diego, to the hinterland all the way up to Julian, to Irvine in Orange County. 

This apparent prosperity is a tribute to Keynesian deficit spending-it would be foolish and disingenuous to state otherwise.If there will ultimately be a price to pay in the form of inflation and subsequent collapse is a matter that only time will reveal. 

It may be that there is a new paradigm in place and deficits do not matter, or that over 7%+  headline unemployment can keep the upper middle class in comfort
in selected localities.

My guess is that the answer is that there is not, and that unless there is a return to economic and social conservatism a bitter economic pill will be forced on America by the iron laws of rational economics.
All the Sheppard's wish all people of goodwill a happy and prosperous 2013

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