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Old 01-16-2010, 09:58 AM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
7,756 posts, read 16,465,200 times
Reputation: 9292

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Katiana wrote:
Tell me, jazz, where do you get your crystal balls? IIRC, you predicted gas prices would rise again to the levels of the spring of 2008, yet we're nowhere near there.
Kat, you know that Jazz and I don't always see things the same way, but I'm in lockstep with him on this one. The timing might be a bit off the mark, but it's gonna happen...and probably soon. Gas prices are already more than a buck higher than they were at this time of the year last year. Think about that, we're spending an additional buck a gallon and no one is batting an eyelash about it. We've been thrown a sucker punch and don't even realize that a punch has been thrown. We have our collective heads in the sand, oblivious that harder punches are headed our way.

Last edited by CosmicWizard; 01-16-2010 at 10:06 AM..
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Old 01-16-2010, 10:05 AM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,120,672 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CAVA1990 View Post
Jazzlover - If you look at the unemployment stats (as of 11/09) the four states with the lowest rates right now are on the mid-upper plains, SD, NC, KS, and NE. What's the reason for that? Strong agriculture? Credit card operations? or?

CO is #12 and VA is #8 (lots of fed money). Surprisingly VT is #6. I can't really make head or tails out of a lot of these:

Unemployment Rates for States
First, none of those states has had massive in-migration in the last few years. In fact, several of them are losing population.

Second, a lot of the states you list did not get caught up as wildly in the real estate/speculation bubble, so they did not have huge chunks of their economies tied to industries (real estate, construction, etc.) that relied on the bubble to exist.

Third, several of them have some relatively stable industry--a lot of it tied to agriculture--that do provide some decent-paying jobs that are in line with local living costs. A lot of medium-sized towns in the region are doing OK economically.

Finally, at least some of those states listed (not all of them) have pretty efficient, responsive government that has not painted itself into a fiscal corner. I attribute a lot of that "good fortune" to the fact that, unlike the Sun Belt states, they don't have the massive liabilities of providing all kinds of very expensive infrastructure and public services to a rapidly growing out-of-control population, and they don't have a massive number of non-productive people sucking at the government teat.

Folks in those states are also pretty common-sense folks who are used to hard times, working together as communities, and with an ethic of self-sufficiency. They don't expect or want the government to do everything for them. Colorado used to have all of those qualities, too, but it is losing them rapidly because far too many of the people who have relocated here lack those qualities, and they--in turn--are even infecting a lot of the "locals" with the same "me-first," "I want my toys and the hell with anything else," hedonistic vibe.

One other little aside, the northern tier of the Plains States also have a very rigorous climate that requires some serious fortitude to adapt to and to enjoy. People who like a cushy life are frequently unwilling to make that adaptation. As my late uncle, who spent his whole life in the Dakotas said, "Don't complain about the bad winters--it keeps all of the lazy riff-raff out the state." There is a lot of truth to that.
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Old 01-16-2010, 10:09 AM
 
Location: Texas
336 posts, read 625,394 times
Reputation: 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
It is easy to see why Colorado may look attractive to people from California, Arizona, Nevada and other "growth/speculative/stupid" states. When one is on the sinking Titanic, even a listing, rusting, leaking tramp steamer looks like the Queen Mary. But that ol' tramp steamer (Colorado, in this case) still has great big problems of its own, and another zillion desperate passengers from other states crowding onto its decks is not going to help one bit. In fact, it could help send it to the bottom, too.

All of the stats aren't really going to affect us...(unless the president starts screwing with it) my husband is on his SS disability and disability from his work...the amount we have here is the same amount we would have there...so I know what I am working with and if I sold our home I would have that initial lump sum to help with housing...as for my daughters husband...his company has branches in Cheyenne and so he knows he would have work...one daughter is a fulltime Mom and my other daughter, if she indeed decided to come with us....has a great work history of administrative work with schools...so she may have to look for a little...but I am sure she would find something...otherwise, our footprints on Colorado wouldn't be devastating to anyone...
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Old 01-16-2010, 10:21 AM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
14,131 posts, read 26,279,037 times
Reputation: 6816
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
Finally, at least some of those states listed (not all of them) have pretty efficient, responsive government that has not painted itself into a fiscal corner. I attribute a lot of that "good fortune" to the fact that, unlike the Sun Belt states, they don't have the massive liabilities of providing all kinds of very expensive infrastructure and public services to a rapidly growing out-of-control population, and they don't have a massive number of non-productive people sucking at the government teat..
Wonder if it also might have to do with their swing votes in the Senate. A few federal dollars probably go a long way there.
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Old 01-16-2010, 10:28 AM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,120,672 times
Reputation: 9066
Quote:
Originally Posted by Terri722 View Post
All of the stats aren't really going to affect us...(unless the president starts screwing with it) my husband is on his SS disability and disability from his work...the amount we have here is the same amount we would have there...so I know what I am working with and if I sold our home I would have that initial lump sum to help with housing...as for my daughters husband...his company has branches in Cheyenne and so he knows he would have work...one daughter is a fulltime Mom and my other daughter, if she indeed decided to come with us....has a great work history of administrative work with schools...so she may have to look for a little...but I am sure she would find something...otherwise, our footprints on Colorado wouldn't be devastating to anyone...
To say you won't be affected is myopic. Livermore, that you have picked--is a nice area--granted. But you admit that you are on a fixed income. Now, imagine how much "fun" living there might be if propane is $5 or $6 per gallon to heat your home. Imagine how economically feasible it will be to commute to Cheyenne or wherever to work if fuel is $6 per gallon or more. Imagine every single necessity you must buy to live costing way more because of increased transportation costs. When fuel is cheap, exurbia can be a nice place to live, but when fuel no longer is cheap--and that is exactly where we are heading--exurbia is going to turn into a nightmare for most people.

People are still building their lives on a foundation of assumptions--cheap energy, abundant resources, etc.-- that are going to crumble. The Bible has a little to say about that:

Quote:
Matthew 7:24-27

"Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash."
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Old 01-16-2010, 10:52 AM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
14,131 posts, read 26,279,037 times
Reputation: 6816
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
To say you won't be affected is myopic. Livermore, that you have picked--is a nice area--granted. But you admit that you are on a fixed income. Now, imagine how much "fun" living there might be if propane is $5 or $6 per gallon to heat your home. Imagine how economically feasible it will be to commute to Cheyenne or wherever to work if fuel is $6 per gallon or more. Imagine every single necessity you must buy to live costing way more because of increased transportation costs. When fuel is cheap, exurbia can be a nice place to live, but when fuel no longer is cheap--and that is exactly where we are heading--exurbia is going to turn into a nightmare for most people.
:
So this won't happen where she is now if she stays there? If we're all doomed we might as well go down the tubes in more pleasant surroundings.
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Old 01-16-2010, 11:05 AM
 
147 posts, read 181,648 times
Reputation: 291
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
Finally, at least some of those states listed (not all of them) have pretty efficient, responsive government that has not painted itself into a fiscal corner. I attribute a lot of that "good fortune" to the fact that, unlike the Sun Belt states, they don't have the massive liabilities of providing all kinds of very expensive infrastructure and public services to a rapidly growing out-of-control population, and they don't have a massive number of non-productive people sucking at the government teat.

Folks in those states are also pretty common-sense folks who are used to hard times, working together as communities, and with an ethic of self-sufficiency. They don't expect or want the government to do everything for them. Colorado used to have all of those qualities, too, but it is losing them rapidly because far too many of the people who have relocated here lack those qualities, and they--in turn--are even infecting a lot of the "locals" with the same "me-first," "I want my toys and the hell with anything else," hedonistic vibe.
Very true. Even as just a visitor to CO several times a year, I have seen the attitude changes that Jazzlover alludes to. The front range is becoming the dog-eat-dog rat-race that the northeast and west coast have been. That old self-reliant American West philosophy is fading. I'll relate a story to you.............

I was in the Wondervue Cafe a few years back having some lunch (route 72 towards Nederland. Excellent TexMex). Started a conversation with the couple sitting next to me. They were maybe in their 50's. They had moved to CO a few years prior from CA and just loved it. They were living down in Lakewood, and the woman went on about the great quality of life. Low crime, newer infrastructures, good schools, etc. Then she said something that floored me. She said she just wished it wasn't so conservative (I always thought it was fairly moderate). I guess she had never been to Boulder. At any rate, I asked her if she ever considered that the reason for the great quality of life was precisely because it had been more conservative, at least in the past. And I did not mean that in the political sense, but in the sense that people tended to be more self-reliant, not whining for "hold my hand" and "wipe my nose" everything. Dare I say "traditional". I could only chuckle. Cheers.

Dan
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Old 01-16-2010, 11:40 AM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
85,025 posts, read 98,908,697 times
Reputation: 31466
^^^Way to politicize things. I've lived here 30 years; I don't see much difference in "rat-racism" between now and then. I've also lived and worked in PA, NY, DE, IL, and CA. Didn't really see much difference there, either. Anyway, the past is past.
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Old 01-16-2010, 11:54 AM
 
9,817 posts, read 19,036,263 times
Reputation: 7541
Quote:
Originally Posted by CCCVDUR View Post
I'd like to hear another side to Jazzz's story, because there are always two sides to every story. Looking at unemployment statistics, Colorado's unemployment was 7.6% in Feb 2009, in Oct 2009 it had dropped to 6.6%! 5.1% in October 2008.

Now, of course, the total labor force went down, yet MANY southwestern and Pacific US towns experienced more than doubling of unemployment from the stock market crash of 9-15-08 to the present.

The alternatives to Colorado is to live in places with even lower unemployment: Utah, Wyoming, Montana, Great Plains States, Texas, and parts of New Mexico, yet these areas are very conservative; not "open to experience" personality states as Colorado is.
Unemployment rates have nothing to do with how many jobs are actually available or not. People often misquote or misuse that number.

You might have full employment in an area of 4000 people and it could be that is all the jobs that are available in that area. If a bunch of people moved there most would probably be unemployed or unemployable for a while.

You also might want to consider underemployment due to the cutting off of billions of dollars that flowed in last decade for real estate vacation and second home markets as well as a decline in tourism. Yes my friends are still "employed" but their income of wages and tips has been down 30-40% the past two years, yet their living costs are still the same. One friend is in personal services and her business is basically devoid of clients now.

My sis and her husband had a household income in the six figures ranges and their income has been cut 2/3 to 3/4 from 2008. Quite a lifestyle change for them. They are giving thought to leaving the mountains.
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Old 01-16-2010, 12:07 PM
 
9,817 posts, read 19,036,263 times
Reputation: 7541
[quote=CCCVDUR;12469260]
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
Colorado is recovering if you look at, among other things, unemployment going down. Brookings Institute: Denver is in the Strongest 20 metros, year over year Sept '08 to Sept '09 (meaning there has been less of a change than MOST markets).

Chambers of Commerce who I've talked with in areas with high foreclosures (Nevada, California, Arizona) are very pessimistic and negative. I did not find this when I visited Colorado.

Sounds like you are a realist, and have seen a definite decline in the economy in Colorado. However, for those of us in Arizona and the Coast, Colorado is in much better shape. If there's a better place, it's probably in the Great Plains??? Thanks for your insights and please keep us optimists in check, here!
Denver is not in the mountains for one thing. Denver as a metro area does have a diverse economy and I think as far as cities goes it's not too bad. I don't think it is the bargain it used to be however.

At least with the mountain towns and their chamber of commerces, those towns depend on an influx of wealth, so of course they are friendly. They want and need your money and the crash has already started up there. It's a free fall that I think will last for a generation considering all the million dollar plus real estate that has been built compared to the people that really have the cash to afford it.

If it is so great then move to Colorado and experience it yourself.

My family has been in the Colorado Rockies for over four generations. Colorado is still frontier country in a lot of respects and it is never easy to make a consistent living there.
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