James and his wife Vicki visited the Northern California coast one weekend, and on the way home in the car talked about the potential advantages and disadvantages of moving to California for retirement.
Observing the Golden State’s rapid march toward full socialism, political correctness and other magical things, they discussed pros and cons of moving there as they drove through the state.
First of all, socialized medicine. James is considering retirement around age 55, just a few years from now. The biggest obstacle? Paying for health insurance from the time he retires until Medicare kicks in at age 65 will be a mighty expensive proposition if he’s not working.
California may be the answer if it passes statewide universal socialized medicine. Retire, move to a relatively inexpensive community in the north state, and take advantage of having healthcare provided by the state. Sure, there might be a small state income tax burden and higher property taxes. Comparing that with the cost of health insurance for a man from age 55 to 65, there could be a substantial overall savings.
Vicki argued that the state would not just let someone move in and take advantage of a system they paid nothing into. First, James noted, he lived in California for a couple of years and paid taxes while he lived there. Second, what’s the difference between the state providing socialized medicine to an illegal immigrant fresh across the border and providing it to a new resident who will be a homeowner? James argued the homeowner should have a better argument due to paying property taxes.
Their conversation then turned to the conservative observation there will be more people receiving benefits from the government than paying into the system. This would, under any foreseeable economic scenario, collapse the economy on a large scale, much as in “Atlas Shrugged”.
James argued that, by the time the system collapses, he and Vicki would be either be very old or already dead. He worried more about their young nephews and nieces that will have to live through the hyper-inflation and the collapse of modern society that is the likely result of the radical craziness. He hopes society will wake up in time to fix the problems, but fears that it may be too late in a place like California.
Poor attitude? Perhaps. Reality? Time will tell.
Next, they discussed the entire left-wing mentality and how well they, as conservatives, could make their way in a state teetering on the edge of complete socialism, political correctness and magical thinking. James argued that picking the right county in the north state won’t be much of a radical change, as many counties in Northern California are just as conservative as Lyon County Nevada where they live now.
He continued that ensuring a county elects the right sheriff, county commissioners, and local elected officials is just as important to the overall wellbeing of folks who live in the community as what goes on at the state and federal levels. Finding the right niche, even in a liberal bastion like California, could still provide a conservative leaning local government.
However, Vicki detests little government interferences that happen in California, like the plastic bag laws that tax consumers ten cents per bag. James responded that he already uses reusable bags, mostly because they don’t break or require double bagging to get from the store to the car, so it’s not that much of an inconvenience, just a change of habit for her.
Either that, or perhaps Vicki will shop less. Not likely, but a man can dream, can’t he?
The positive? California is a beautiful place, with mild weather in many parts of the north. There is the State of Jefferson movement that might bring change and even an entirely new state, although that’s not likely. Most northern California counties elect conservatives to local positions. Housing prices in Northern California are comparable to those in Northern Nevada. And, Nevada is trending to the left, as evidenced by the last two legislatures.
Move to California, take advantage of all the free stuff, come to terms with the overregulation and other craziness, and make retirement great again!
What could possibly go wrong?
Ron Knecht is Nevada Controller. James Smack is Deputy Controller.