A reader writes:
The Orange County story is a truly moving one. And having lived in there since 1992, the description rings true. But your correspondent calls it 'remarkable' -- not so, I fear. For two reasons:
Whatever else may be the case about OC and its wealth, it has always had plenty of poverty as well -- more than I think your correspondent realizes. I do not blame him or her, really, but there is an almost seductive way that the freeways around here allow one to literally drive over people and places that many don't realize actually exist. People think the TV image of OC is the real thing. I don't have the time to fully delve into this right now or rant about it, but there have always been strugglers in OC -- and a fair amount of them never have had anything close to a Lexus.
When it comes to the housing market and overleveraging and the like, OC has been ground zero in many, many ways. Noted financial blog Calculated Risk alone has any number of links and articles discussing it. Sadly, I fear it's less remarkable and more a true sign of the times.
It is still a moving story -- but it is truly a tip of an iceberg that's long been lurking.