This has nothing to do with Napsterization. I just need to vent.
What the fuck is going on? On Monday, on the way up to Tahoe, I paid $2.29 a gallon for regular gas in Berkeley. When I got to Tahoe, in the most trafficy tourist area, I drove by the gas station at North Shore where it's usually way more than anywhere else in the state, and it was $2.11.
Today, I bought gas for $2.39 a gallon and then heard on the radio that while the average price in the US is $1.74, in CA the average is $2.14. Fucking hell.
This isn't about gas (we use too much, my next car will be a Prius, I swear). It's about California. Remind me. Why is this the most expensive place on earth besides London and Tokyo? I mean, I gave up CA wine 5 years ago for two reasons: it was not very subtle in the flavor department (McInerney calls our reds "Arnold Schwarzeneggers" and our whites "Pamela Andersons"), but there was no subtly at all regarding price, which for the same brands had tripled over three years. We were paying for the real estate. I already buy toiletries in NY because they are so much cheaper, as are clothes and shoes, even less in Europe. And eating is less everywhere else, as is the subway compared to BART, and did I mention coffee? Or housing? Or cable? Or the price of cars? A friend told me at a meeting early this morning that she's buying a mini, but the premium on buying one in the Bay Area is $1500 more than everywhere else in the country. She's calling Nevada and Utah right now.
Dang, this is fucking ridiculous. Why can't we pay what everyone else in the country pays? (Oh, and I'll be swearing over this until the FCC regulates my speech too.) Why is this happening? Do they think everyone is a Microsoft millionaire? I know Prop 13 is behind this, because no one will sell their property (they want to keep the low tax basis), driving up demand, and causing massive overbidding of properties on the few sales that occur. Yeah, it may be a bubble, but now even new owners have incentive not to burst it by reforming that law. And the prices are reflected in everything else we do, buy, everyone hired, everything we touch. Way to go NY. You're off the most expensive list. I swear, I love being there partly because it's so reasonable.
This sucks wind out of an exhaust pipe.
Okay, back to our regularly scheduled programming now. I'm done with this rant for now.Posted by Mary Hodder at March 26, 2004 12:45 PM | TrackBack