Ben Shapiro on California (and leaving it)

As of the first writing of this article, Ben Shapiro has announced his intention to move Daily Wire, as well as his family, out of California and into Nashville, Tennessee. While Californian’s may well want to take a “Don’t let the door hit you on the buttocks (Ben would hate if we cussed here) on your way out”, we nonetheless thought this would be a good time to look at the decision, the ramifications, and whether it will have an impact on the continued exodus of businesses on California.

As is tradition, we’ll start with his own words and then look at the situation from a larger view. First, we’ll begin with his announcement. Just a heads up, we’ll have the video announcement embedded at the bottom.

So, just yesterday Governor Jerry Brown, former governor of California from 1975 to 1983 and then again from 2011 to 2019, said where are you gonna go? You say that California’s bad where are you gonna go? The answer is we are going to Nashville (Tennessee). We are taking the entire company and we are picking up and we are leaving.

Ben Shapiro

And there you have it. The Daily Wire is heading to the hub of conservative thought that is Nashville, Texas. Let’s look at some of the claims Ben made about “why” and determine whether they have some credence or whether it’s an adhoc justification.

Shapiro cited, among others, three main concerns about California including the rent being too high, the crime rate, the ever increasing homeless population, and the cleanliness of the city but Shapiro does seem to imply that the last three (crime rate, homeless population and cleanliness of the city) are interconnected. Let’s take them in order.

Not only is the rent too damn high because of all of the garbage zoning regulations here but the quality of life here has degraded radically.

Ben Shapiro

Now this is a criticism that is more relevant to Los Angeles, and the surrounding area, than California as a whole. However both the cost of rent and availability are in fact a major concern in some of LA’s most dense and popular cities. Santa Monica, for example, has had a long running housing crises where claims range about a city that is 99% rented.

A cursory review of the Zillow renting availability in Santa Monica seem to confirm both of these realities. In a classic supply/demand relationship, the lack of available housing would seem to explain the insane cost of rent. At the same time thought this also casts doubt on the claim that everyone, or even a sizable amount of the population, are leaving California.

The city has specifically told law enforcement they can’t do anything about the rampant homelessness problem that has plagued los angeles 66, 000 homeless people in L.A. county.

Ben Shapiro

Alright this is a subtle, but recent, reference to a story that came to light in early February, 2020 when Cops were not given permission, though they didn’’t want the responsibility, of evicting homeless people from their self constructed shanty towns in California. As Ron Lawrence, president of the California Police Chiefs Association is not sure who or how the homeless population should be dealt with, but felt that police might be the wrong people for the job, Lawrence remarked “Homelessness in and of itself is not a crime, and people need to understand that sometimes policing is not the best intervention.”

As always, should we become aware that Ben has changed his opinion or should new evidence be submitted that we have either misconstrued his opinion or failed to include important statements from him, we will 1) make the correction, 2) note the correction here, 3) issue a mea culpa that attempts to explain and improve on how we missed this. 

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