Hell No, They Won’t Go; Five Reasons Why California Businesses Aren’t Moving To Texas (VIDEO)

Author: February 5, 2013 3:17 pm

Jerry Brown, Rick Perry, and illustration from Texas' "Wide Open for Business" website.

Should California’s businesses up and leave for the Lone Star State? Texas Governor Rick Perry sure seems to think so. CNNMoney reports that Perry fired the latest salvo in his state’s ongoing economic rivalry with California, with a radio ad bragging about Texas’ low taxes and lack of regulation. The radio spots began broadcasting this week in San Francisco, Sacramento, Los Angeles, San Diego, and the Inland Empire, and are part of the State’s aggressive “Texas Wide Open For Business” campaign.

Here’s a video with the audio from the advertisement:

And here’s the transcript:

Building a business is tough, but I hear that building a business in California is next to impossible. This is Texas governor Rick Perry, and I’ve got a message for California businesses. Come check out Texas. There are plenty of reasons Texas has been named the best state for doing business for eight years running. Visit TexasWideOpenForBusiness.Com, and see why our low taxes, sensible regulation, and fair legal system are just the thing to get your business moving … to Texas.

As per the old Avis ad, I suppose that when you’re number two, you’ve got to try harder. California’s economy ranks number one in the United States with a Gross State Product of $1,936,400, to Texas’ number two, with a GSP of $1,307,432. There’s just one problem, which is that Texas happens to be located in Texas. And — as Jonathan Lansner from the Orange County Register writes — despite California’s high costs and other faults — “37.69 million Californians aren’t stupid.” People live here for a reason, and businesses go where the people are.


Here are five reasons why Perry’s wasting his money:

1. California’s budget is in much better shape: Despite Perry’s and his fellow Republicants’ constant nattering on about fiscal responsibility, Texas is currently running a $5 billion budget deficit they created by underfunding their state’s Medicaid and school districts. Chris Tomlinson from Associated Press reports that the Lone Star State is also  on the hook for $161 million to “help offset the costs of wildfires that burned across the state in 2011.” Meaning, their Republican legislature underfunded their emergency services as well. Meanwhile, Democratic California’s economy is growing and Governor Brown has led the state from a $25 billion deficit to a surplus in record time.

2. California is a cultural center for creative innovation: Face it, the computer nerds, artists, geniuses, and visionary entrepreneurs who drive our thriving technology and entertainment industries probably DON’T want to move to Texas. Cool “blue” pockets like Austin notwithstanding, many Californians moved here to get AWAY from people like intolerant, homophobic, football-lovin’, all-American folks like Rick Perry. Kish Rajan, director of the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development told reporters, “I can understand why Rick Perry is interested in California. We were the national jobs leader for most of the last year with 257,000 new private sector jobs. Real job creation comes from California’s history as a national leader in start-ups and the expansion of homegrown businesses.”

3. Californians are willing to invest for the future: Back in November, Californian citizens raised its top tax rate to 13.3% — the highest in the nation. And in case you think this was just that moochy old 47% fleecing the rich, they also voted themselves a seven-year income tax increase — Proposition 30 — to shore up funding for their schools. As Reuters reports, pundits predicted a mass exodus of millionaire from the Golden State, but it hasn’t happened. California’s diversity, educated work force, creative culture, and many amenities are why it attracts 50% of all venture capital financing in the US (from the CA Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development).

4. It’s where the jobs are: Unless you want to work at Walmart or on an oil rig (though California has those jobs, too), California’s 1.9% job  growth rate is higher than the national average of 1.3%, according to the CA Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development. Lansner also writes that “California workers are also highly valued by their bosses. The BLS {Bureau of Labor Services] tells us that the average weekly wage in California’s private sector was $926 last year — third highest in the nation.” Maybe that’s why some businesses don’t like California! But there are still plenty of companies who want to stay, including 2,324 biomedical companies, 3.5 million small businesses, and 53 Fortune 500 companies (from the CA Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development).

5. Location, location, location: California’s mild climate, natural beauty (greatly enhanced by all those annoying regulations), cultural diversity, educational institutions, skilled workers, and miscellaneous geniuses will always make it attractive for companies and individuals. Sure it’s expensive, but sometimes it takes money to make money.

And … as a special bonus … Koch Brothers toady-pundit, former GOP California State Assemblyman, Chuck DeVore has moved to Texas for his new, Koch-funded job with the Texas Public Policy Foundation, as reported by my AI colleague and fellow Californian, Lorraine Devon-Wilke.  And now, he won’t stop going on and on about how freaken GREAT Texas is. Devon-Wilke remarks, “Bye Bye … don’t let the door hit ya!,” and I say, “Good riddance to bad rubbish.”


Elisabeth Parker Elisabeth Parker is a writer, Web designer, mom, political junkie, and dilettante. Come visit her at ElisabethParker.Com, “like” her on facebook, or follow her on Twitter. For more articles by Elisabeth, click here.
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