There are Two Americas!

OK, I guess I have to admit that there are two Americas:  The one that no one wants to live in any more and the one where everyone is moving to. 

Unfortunately, it appears that our next president will be from Illinois or New York, two of the eight states the local government has screwed up so bad that no one wants to do business there any more.  I guess both Hillary and Obama can claim that their states have licked the immigration problem bay increasing taxes and regulation so much that no one wants to come to their states any more.


  1. Frederick Davies:

    McCain in from Arizona, which appears in a healthy blue. You are being too pessimistic.

  2. happyjuggler0:

    People are moving to West Virginia? Why?

  3. Doug:

    Are people leaving Illinois because of a bad business climate, or is it because of the bad weather climate? I don't think Illinois has particularly onerous regulations, especially considering how large & liberal Chicago is.

  4. skh.pcola:

    Surely Illinois has a better "weather climate" than, say, South of the "High inbound" states. I know that northern folks move south due to the ungodly (to me, at least) winters that y'all have up there, but Illinois isn't the harshest place in the contiguous 48. I'd attribute the net egress to liberals bunging up the business climate, but I have no first-hand knowledge of that. I can extrapolate experience in other majority-liberal states to IL, though. There is no harsher overlord in a capitalist society than a liberal with power.

  5. BobH:

    West Virginia seemed strange to me, too. I couldn't find net migration figures in a quick look at the Census Bureau site, but this page

    shows that WV grew 0.6% 2000-06, while the US grew 6.4%. Seems unlikely that WV had much, if any, net gain from migration.

  6. Chris:

    Illinois is very regulated from a business perspective - we are losing corporate headquarters at a pretty brisk clip. And forget about small business and it is looking to get worse before itgets better.

    I'm curious about how they determine whether or not the rate is high or just positive - the locations with "high" inbound rates are all low population states - is that weighting slight inbound rates abnormally high due to per capita rates?

  7. Ilkka Kokkarinen:

    That map somehow reminds of some other map of America that I think was in the news a few years back... anybody help me remember what it was?

  8. Kyle Bennett:

    re WV: How far do the suburbs of DC extend westward? What about Pittsburgh? People from those areas who want to go exurban but still be within a day trip of the big city might need to go that far. I dunno, just speculation. Another possibility: all the states just south of the rust belt are gaining, so maybe there is a general migration southward from it? I also wonder how much of this gain is migration from outside the country as opposed to migration from the states that are losing.

    I moved from IL (high negative) to Arizona (high positive) due to scenery, weather, congestion, pollution/general dinginess, and political climate, in that order of importance. The job market in IL is far, far better than it is here, and I've been paying off IL level debt with AZ level income. That part was a mistake, but overall, I'm happy with the move.

  9. Bearster:

    Our three potential presidential candidates come from:

    Illinois is where Obama happens to hold office, at the moment. And Hillary is a New Yorker? Fuggedaboudit!

  10. Doug:


    Hilary is from Park Ridge, Illinois.

  11. Tim:

    I am from the western suburbs of Chicago and I don't think the state regulation is that bad but the taxes are insane if you are in Chicago or in Cook County. They are either talking about or have passed a sales tax of 11.5%! Our Governor is a complete idiot and is totally corrupt. It will be a miracle if he doesn't go to jail. Our last governor is in jail. Basically, we are a sesspool for politics. You know what they say, the scum always floats to the top.

  12. la petite chou chou:

    I'm fine with people leaving NY. If they leave Manhattan perhaps by the time I'm able to move there housing prices will have fallen enough for me to be able to afford it.

    I can definitely vouch for Oregon having a big influx....And I would say it goes for immigration from both other states and other countries.

  13. HTRN:

    Most of the exodus out of New York is from Upstate - little work, and expensive to boot. New York on the otherhand, just keeps growing. Sure people leave(Hell, I'm leaving, my family has been here since the beginning of the nineteenth century), but for every 2 that leave, 3 more come here, either from the rest of country, or from the rest of the world..


  14. happyjuggler0:

    From the US Census Bureau, we can see that WV's population went up from 1,808,344 in 2000 to 1,812,035 in 2007. If there was a large influx in 2007 from 2006 as the map on this thread suggests, then it was surely counterbalanced by a large outflow sometime from 2000 to 2006.

    In short, an increase of 3,691 people from a starting point of 1,808,344 over a period of 7 years is only an increase of 0.002%, which by any reasonable definition is "balanced", not "high inbound".

  15. happyjuggler0:

    Hmmmm, just a thought. it is possible that the migration patterns and the total population changes don't contradict each other. There is this thing called giving birth which doesn't require migration, but which does affect population totals.

    Also it occurs to me that since the map is provided by a moving truck company, that it probably doesn't include migrants from other countries, at least not with their initial move to the US. Also, not everyone actually rents a truck to move to another state. If you can fit all your possessions in your car (or heaven forbid, a bus) or in an RV then you can move state to state without changing the above map.

  16. Flash Gordon:

    Hey, I just built a house in Wyoming so all you people thinking of moving there, forget it! It's just sage brush, wind and rednecks. Stay home!

  17. DKN:

    RE: How far do the suburbs of DC extend westward?

    Pretty much all the way to Winchester, VA. And southwest to Manassas or more (there are people in Charlottesville that commute to DC). And south to Fredericksburg or more.

  18. Tom:

    Isn't some of this migration more the result of demographics than business climate? I grew up in PA and everything I have heard about its demographics lately is that gentrification is playing a serious role there. I imagine the senior citizens are retiring to sunnier climes and that's a bit part of the migration out of there...

  19. Dirck the Noorman:

    There's a clear relationship between where people want to live and the degree of economic freedom. Its obvious on both the international level (migration to the US) and within the US.

    I did a simple regression of the United Van Lines stats for 2007 and the 2004 state-by-state popular votes for W. A surprisingly tight fit:

  20. Zarathustra:

    West Virginia is one of a small handful of states that has more deaths than births than deaths every year; this is why they have tiny to negative population growth yet positive net migration simultaneously.