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The Big Shift πŸ”— 1623865865  

People are wondering if the "Great Resignation" is real. I'm here to tell you that it is, and the consequences are farther reaching than you might suspect. #TheBigShift

I've already seen a number of job-hops by the most talented engineers at firms I'm in touch with here in flyover country, as they realize they can be paid better even at remote rates by joining a coastal firm.

This is a mirror of what is happening with people moving all over the country from the coasts to flyover country. The reasons for doing so are actually the same, however.

The nature of progressive taxation means that the most productive pay the most in, and as such the departure of this small minority of people has an outsized impact on tax base. The movement of these people from income tax states such as CA and NY to non income tax states such as TX and FL is having an outsized impact as such.

Similarly, the people leaving to get better remote work opportunities are those best capable of doing so; the most productive. Repeated study has shown that a minority of very productive employees do the vast majority of important work in the firm, so even a small number of high profile defections are going to have huge impact.

The question of course is "Why now?" Here, the reason for both is the same. Lockdown destroyed the inertia which was preventing movement -- the benefits of community which previously kept one from moving residence or firm were forcibly extinguished. This made all locales and firms roughly equal when it came to amenities, so you may as well just move to the highest paying and lowest taxing situation possible, as you can't exactly maximize for lifestyle anymore.

Now that people have actually pulled the trigger on movement they are realizing that those things keeping them where they were weren't that great in the first place, and actually little more than rationalizations for inertia. As such we can probably expect a de-emphasis on fringe benefits in the firm going forward.

As to the policy implications of this mass migration, it's sending an unmistakable message. Taxes are too high relative to what the citizenry of the coast get out of it, and have been for a long time. Unlike the firms, I don't expect they will adapt quickly enough to avert crisis.
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