Monday, May 28, 2012

DC's Bubble Still Rising

How’s a country to make sense of a national capital whose day-to-day life is so much more upholstered than its own? Increasingly, it cannot. Recently Washington passed San Jose in Silicon Valley to become the richest metropolitan area in the U.S. Since the 1990s, says economist Stephen Fuller of George Mason University, the region has led the nation’s metropolitan areas in overall employment rate. The median household income in the metro area in 2010 was $84,523, according to calculations by Bloomberg News, nearly 70% over the national median household income of $50,046. Nine of the 15 richest counties in the country surround Washington, including Nos. 1, 3, 4 and 5. Per capita income in D.C. is more than twice that in Maine. All this explains why Gallup’s Well-Being Index rates D.C. as the most satisfied large metropolitan ­area in the U.S. The pollsters were especially ­impressed with the region’s low smoking rate (15%) and the 72% who visit the dentist annually for a checkup. Washingtonians are skinnier, exercise more, eat more vegetables and are more likely to have health insurance than the average American. They’re also more optimistic—about the economy and about the future in general.
Read it at Time
Bubble on the Potomac
By Andrew Ferguson
(h/t Tyler Cowen at Marginal Revolution)

As a resident of DC I feel both fortunate for my own opportunities and simultaneously worried about the long-term political implications.

Separately, I want to draw attention to the following quote from the article, less for the comment and more for the commenter:
“Happy hour is the most important hour of the day,” says Emily Schultheis, a Web editor and recent arrival. “It’s how you meet people, how you get jobs, how you find roommates, how you get tips for stories and how you get in trouble.”
Emily is a good friend of mine from college and Web editor at The Washington Free Beacon. Only a few months after its unveiling, the site is already making a name for itself under the guidance of its editor in chief, Matthew Continetti. Be sure to check it out!

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