Over the past 10 years, approximately 5 million people have moved away from the state of California, and as you will see in this article this mass exodus appears to be accelerating. So why exactly is this happening?
Once upon a time, it seemed like almost everyone wanted to live in California. The nearly endless sunshine, the incredible weather, the pristine beaches and a booming economy motivated millions of young Americans to move out there to pursue "the California Dream." In fact, in the early 90s, I actually explored the idea of moving out there myself. But now the California Dream has become a nightmare. Californians are being taxed to death, traffic in the major cities is absolutely horrific, violent crime and gang activity are on the rise, millions of illegal immigrants are putting an incredible strain on social support systems, and the ultra-liberal government in Sacramento seems to have gone completely insane. In addition, the state faces constant threats from earthquakes, wildfires, droughts and mudslides, so it is quite understandable why so many people feel motivated to leave and never come back.
The No. 1 destination for people leaving the state of California in recent years has been the state of Texas. And according to Ali Meyer of the Washington Free Beacon, the number of people leaving California for Texas has reached "its highest level in nearly a decade."
The number of Californians leaving the state and moving to Texas is at its highest level in nearly a decade, according to data from the Internal Revenue Service.
According to IRS migration data, which uses individual income tax returns to record year-to-year address changes, over 250,000 California residents moved out of the state between 2013 and 2014, the latest period for which data was available. The tax returns reported more than $21 billion in adjusted gross income to the IRS.
Of the returns, 33,626 reported address changes from California to Texas, which has been the top destination for individuals leaving California since 2007.
Certainly much of this exodus can be attributed to the absolutely suffocating tax rates in the state. California has a 13.3 percent income tax, and that is in addition to a whole host of other ways that they have come up with to extract as much money out of the population as possible.
But if you really love living somewhere, most people will put up with high taxes.
To me, there are much greater concerns for those living in the state, including the fact that "the Big One" could literally strike at any moment.
According to a study that was discussed in the Los Angeles Times, a magnitude 9.0 earthquake along the Cascadia fault could potentially produce a tsunami so large that it would "wash away coastal towns."
If a 9.0 earthquake were to strike along California's sparsely populated North Coast, it would have a catastrophic ripple effect.
A giant tsunami created by the quake would wash away coastal towns, destroy U.S. 101 and cause $70 billion in damage over a large swath of the Pacific coast. More than 100 bridges would be lost, power lines toppled and coastal towns isolated. Residents would have as few as 15 minutes' notice to flee to higher ground, and as many as 10,000 would perish.
Scientists last year published this grim scenario for a massive rupture along the Cascadia fault system, which runs 700 miles off shore from Northern California to Vancouver Island.
That is very bad news for all of those million-dollar homes along the northern California coast. Once upon a time, I dreamed of a home overlooking the Pacific Ocean, but not anymore. In fact, today, I would not even dream of owning such a home.
And of course, southern California is very much in danger as well. The San Andreas fault gets most of the press, but there is actually a fault line that is far more dangerous. According to one seismologist, the Puente Hills fault line could someday "eat L.A." and cause hundreds of billions of dollars in economic damage.
Video simulations of a rupture on the Puente Hills fault system show how energy from a quake could erupt and be funneled toward L.A.'s densest neighborhoods, with the strongest waves rippling to the west and south across the Los Angeles Basin.
According to estimates by the USGS and Southern California Earthquake Center, a massive quake on the Puente Hills fault could kill from 3,000 to 18,000 people and cause up to $250 billion in damage. Under this worst-case scenario, people in as many as three-quarters of a million households would be left homeless.
The entire California coastline lies along "the Ring of Fire" which has become much more active in recent years. Scientists assure us that it is only a matter of time before the state experiences absolutely horrific natural disasters, but most Californians have been lulled into a false sense of security.
In the end, I believe that the great shaking that will come to the state of California will be just part of the great shaking that is coming to the United States as a whole. This great shaking is something that I discuss in my new book entitled The Rapture Verdict, which is all about Bible prophecy and the last days. I am fully convinced that the judgment of God is coming to America, and that everything that can be shaken will be shaken.
There are many people out there who are concerned that the state of California will fall into the ocean someday, but scientists tell us that is probably not likely to happen. However, the U.S. Geological Service does admit that, one day, the cities of Los Angeles and San Francisco will be right next to each other.
Will California eventually fall into the ocean?
No. The San Andreas Fault System, which crosses California from the Salton Sea in the south to Cape Mendocino in the north, is the boundary between the Pacific Plate and North American Plate. The Pacific Plate is moving northwest with respect to the North American Plate at approximately 46 millimeters per year (the rate your fingernails grow). The strike-slip earthquakes on the San Andreas Fault are a result of this plate motion. The plates are moving horizontally past one another, so California is not going to fall into the ocean. However, Los Angeles and San Francisco will one day be adjacent to one another!
And of course, it is true that small parts of California are already falling into the ocean as this current El Nino weather pattern causes stunning erosion along the coast.
Yes, there are good things about the state of California, and I hope to get the chance to visit again at least one more time before it is too late.
But there is no way that I would want to live there, and if anyone that does live there asks me, I always encourage them to think about moving.
So what do you think about the future of the state?
Michael Snyder's book entitled "Living A Life That Really Matters" is available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.com.
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