Latinos in California

Date: Wednesday, July 15, 2015
In: KABC Radio 790 Los Angeles

Joel recently appeared on KABC’s McIntyre in the Morning to talk about the Latino population in California and its prospects for the future.
Click the Play button below to listen. (mp3 audio file)

Homebuyers Confront China Syndrome

Appearing in:

Orange County Register

China has hacked our government, devastated or severely challenged our industries and enjoyed one of the greatest wealth transfers in history – from our households to its. China also benefits from by far the largest trade surplus with the United States and also owns 11 percent of our national debt.

Sometimes it seems to be increasingly China’s world, and we just happen to live in it. Some, such as columnist Thomas Friedman and Daniel A. Bell, author of the newly published “The China Model,” even suggest we adjust our political system to more closely resemble that of the Chinese.

Yet, a funny thing has happened on the way to global domination – the Chinese are coming here with their money, and, often, with their families. Rather than seeing China as the land of opportunity, more Chinese have been establishing homes in America, particularly in California, where they account for roughly one-third of foreign homebuyers, with upward of 70 percent paying cash. Overall Chinese investment in U.S. real estate has grown from $50 million in 2000 to $14 billion in 2013, surpassing all other foreign investors.

Read the entire piece at The Orange County Register.

Housing the Future: Report

Housing the FutureFor generations, the Inland empire has provided a convenient target for criticism from the Southern California coastal cities, largely derided as a smoggy expanse populated by less-skilled workers. Yet in reality, the Riverside-San Bernardino area has emerged as the indispensable geography for the region’s hard-press middle class, for the foreign born and even for millennials.

Read the Report (PDF opens in a new window or tab)

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How California Became a Blue-State Role Model

Appearing in:

Orange County Register

California, once disdained as zany, insubstantial and politically unreliable, has now become a favorite of the blue state crew. From culture and technology to politics, the Golden State is getting all sorts of kudos from an establishment media traditionally critical of our state.

For example, the New York Times recently ran two pieces, one political and the other cultural, that praised this state for its innovation and cool – even in the midst of a horrendous drought. Read more

Southern California Housing Figures to Get Tighter, Pricier

Appearing in:

Orange County Register

What kind of urban future is in the offing for Southern California? Well, if you look at both what planners want and current market trends, here’s the best forecast: congested, with higher prices and an ever more degraded quality of life. As the acerbic author of the “Dr. Housing Bubble” blog puts it, we are looking at becoming “los sardines” with a future marked by both relentless cramming and out-of-sight prices.

This can be seen in the recent surge of housing prices, particularly in the areas of the region dominated by single-family homes. You can get a house in San Francisco – a shack, really – for what it costs to buy a mansion outside Houston, or even a nice home in Irvine or Villa Park. Choice single-family locations like Irvine, Manhattan Beach and Santa Monica have also experienced soaring prices.

Market forces – overseas investment, a strong buyer preference for single-family homes and a limited number of well-performing school districts – are part of, but hardly all, the story. More important may be the increasingly heavy hand of California’s planning regime, which favors ever-denser development at the expense of single-family housing in the state’s interior.

Read the entire piece at The Orange County Register.

California Housing Market Divide

By: Kathleen Hays and Vonnie Quinn
In: Bloomberg Advantage

Joel recently appeared on the Bloomberg Advantage radio show to discuss the California housing market and the implication of the growing divide between those who can afford to buy a house and those who cannot.

Click the Play button below to listen. (mp3 audio file)

Calling Out the High-Tech Hypocrites

Appearing in:

Real Clear Politics

The recent brouhaha over Indiana’s religious freedom law revealed two basic things: the utter stupidity of the Republican Party and the rising power of the emerging tech oligarchy. As the Republicans were once again demonstrating their incomprehension of new social dynamics, the tech elite showed a fine hand by leading the opposition to the Indiana law.

This positioning gained the tech industry an embarrassingly laudatory piece in the  New York Times, portraying its support for gay rights as symbolic of a “new social activism” that proves their commitment to progressive ideals. Read more

Asian Augmentation

Appearing in:

Orange County Register

California, our beautiful, resource-rich state, has managed to miss both the recent energy boom and the renaissance of American manufacturing. Hollywood is gradually surrendering its dominion in a war of a thousand cuts and subsidies. California’s poverty rate – adjusted for housing costs – is the nation’s worst, and much of the working class and lower middle class is being forced to the exits. Our recent spate of high-tech growth has created individual fortunes, but few jobs, outside the Bay Area. The agricultural heartland is suffering not only from drought, but from green policies that allow a torrent of unused water to flow into the Sacramento Delta and San Francisco Bay while huge parts of the Central Valley go fallow.

But California retains one powerful trump card that our leaders in Sacramento have not yet found a way to squander: Its link to Asia. Read more

California Should Make Regular People More of a Priority

Appearing in:

Orange County Register

California in 1970 was the American Dream writ large. Its economy was diversified, from aerospace and tech to agriculture, construction and manufacturing, and allowed for millions to achieve a level of prosperity and well-being rarely seen in the world.

Forty-five years later, California still is a land of dreams, but, increasingly, for a smaller group in the society. Silicon Valley, notes a recent Forbes article, is particularly productive in making billionaires’ lists and minting megafortunes faster than anywhere in the country. California’s billionaires, for the most part, epitomize American mythology – largely self-made, young and more than a little arrogant. Many older Californians, those who have held onto their houses, are mining gold of their own, as an ever-more environmentally stringent and density-mad planning regime turns even modest homes into million-dollar-plus properties.

What about California society as a whole? The Chapman University Center for Demographics and Policy released a report this month, by attorneys David Friedman and Jennifer Hernandez, on “California’s social priorities.” It painstakingly lays out our trajectory over the past 40 years. For the most part, it’s not a pretty picture and – to use the most overused word in the planning prayer book – far from sustainable from a societal point of view.

Read the full article at The Orange County Register.

The Evolving Geography of Asian America: Suburbs Are New High-Tech Chinatowns

Appearing in:

Forbes

In the coming decades, no ethnic group may have more of an economic impact on the local level in the U.S. than Asian-Americans. Asia is now the largest source of legal immigrants to the U.S., constituting 40% of new arrivals in 2013. They are the country’s highest-income, best-educated and fastest-growing racial group Read more