Alex Forshaw   writes: 

CA's property tax system is idiotic and the most dysfunctional in the country.

Property taxes are assessed on purchased basis, not on assessed value. So somebody who bought a home 30 years ago for $10,000 could pay 1/10th (or less) the property tax of someone in an identical house next door.

It has placed a huge relative tax burden on recent home buyers. It has subsidized the aging hippies who bought into CA 30 years ago, who have subsequently voted to throttle housing supply in the name of environmentalism for their own benefit

Kim Zussman writes: 

Your thesis is based on commonality with losers and supplicants.  The only ones subsidized, ever and always, are the socialist organizers. 

Check back with us when you're at the end of your earning years.  Without 13 those who always know better would squeeze you out of your house when you are old and useless to them.  Even if you followed the rules, paid your taxes, and paid off the mortgage, there is always marketable pathos in the unending supply of hungry mouths to feed.

Alex Forshaw writes: 

I'm a raging conservative and I think taxes suck. But if you're going to buy into the idea of a property tax, levy it in a way that's transparent and affects people on a logical and consistent basis. The CA property tax system charges nothing to people who bought 30-50 years ago (who are sitting on gigantic paper gains) and does the opposite to new buyers. It's totally inequitable, capricious, and creates lots of terrible incentives, more so than any other vanilla state tax that I can think of.

Larry W  writes: 

Howards point, and success of prop13, was the unfairness to people that had lived/worked in homes for year and could not afford the tax hike until they sold those gains are illusory until sold and the state was taxing a value the owner never pocketed

BTW Howard was pretty amazing ball of energy, perhaps I’ll share some stories of being on the campaign trail with him one of these days


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