It is shocking that the home of Silicon Valley and much of the nation’s GDP is tops in poverty rate, but this is what happens in most leftist Utopias: you have a few haves and many have-nots.
Three key policy decisions made years ago in California has caused this. First, California has a huge entrenched government bureaucracy that has created incentives to put and keep people on assistance: that is what big-government does. Next, California has millions of undeveloped acres of land but has become beholden to rich, corrupt environmental groups and thus has some of the most restrictive land-use regulations in America. The result is very expensive real estate. Finally, these same corrupt environmentalists have successfully enacted draconian “clean” energy regulations, making the cost of energy higher in California than any place else in the country. For people on the lower end of the income spectrum housing and energy make up their biggest expenses and in California those are unaffordable. Economics 101, and California is failing. Failed leftist policies always hurt the poor the most, and California is no exception.