Calexit: Would the United States be better off if California seceded?

From Melia Robinson at Business Insider:

The group leading the charge, Yes California Independence Campaign, assembled long before Trump’s surprising victory. Its aim is to hold a referendum in 2018 that, if passed, would bring California one step closer to legally seceding from the union.

The movement has racked up an impressive backer already. Shervin Pishevar, an early investor in Uber and well-known angel investor, said on Twitter that he would bankroll a campaign to make California its own nation if Trump won.

He expressed a desire that California, the sixth-largest economy in the world in terms of GDP, might become a catalyst for a “national dialogue” as the country reaches a “tipping point.”

More Silicon Valley innovators are hopping on the bandwagon.More.

Reality check: Presumably, these banner marchers  are appealing to lifelong urbanites, typically with jobs whose ultimate funding source is the taxpayer. Silicon Valley got started in California, almost by accident. It could move. Indeed, most high tech probably has, in the sense of India and China, for example. And the vast numbers elsewhere who are probably working  from home now.

Hollywood is going digital and, apart from nostalgia tours, could move. The only industries that can’t move are those that depend on natural resources and agriculture in a specific region. And those industries are just not doing that well in California these days.

So, given that California is coastal, but the US has other northern coastal states, what would be lost if California left – apart from galloping drains on public resources?

Canada would break up if it lost Quebec. Check a map. Would the United States break up if it lost California?

See also: More Americans work for government than for manufacturing now

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