Marooned In The National Capital Region

Said to be “recession proof,” the national capital region tends to weather most recessions better than other parts of the country, no matter what “economist” Dave Stroup says.

Though unemployment rose to 9.3 percent in the District of Columbia, surrounding counties in Maryland and Virginia recorded unemployment rates of six percent, only marginally higher than the five percent or so considered to be “ideal” by many economists. Suburban employment rates, by the way, remain germane to our discussion, given that some 87.5 percent of the metropolitan area’s 4 million residents live outside of the “danger zone.”

Though employment may be relatively strong in the metropolitan area, the seat of federal government and home to the military-industrial complex, falling housing prices and the tight credit market have impacted some key aspects of our region, including demography. The Washington Post reports today that dramatic changes in domestic migratory patterns may be mostly attributed to the market.

“I looked at these numbers and said, ‘Wow!” William H. Frey, a Brookings Institution demographer, told the Washington Post, speaking in the conservative argot of his trade. “This is a more drastic change in U.S. migration patterns than we’ve seen in a long time, and I don’t think we’ve seen the end of it.”

At a happy hour at Bachelor’s Mill, a favorite haunt of demographers, Frey later said he’d nearly shit his pants when he saw the numbers.

Following similar trends in cities of the South and Southwest, the exodus to cheaper outer suburbs slowed with the housing market, with buyers everywhere remaining cautious. Arlington County gained 1,750 residents, with Fairfax County gaining 1.1 percent, according to the Post. Moreover, the poor housing market helped to slow the exodus from Prince George’s County, which shrank by only 0.5 percent compared to the previous year’s 0.8 percent.

So it seems that the economy has in fact devastated some local residents of the national capitol region. As the Post reports, “Although the District and other inner counties… continued to lose more U.S. residents than they attracted, the loss was substantially less than in previous years.”

Many of us, we are trapped.


  1. I don't expect you to like this post. I expect you to stick that monitor up your ass and have an orgasm.


  3. You can slide today on this post M@. I won't be abusing you today. It was after all just enough to keep me from throwing up.

  4. @M@,

    Interesting analysis. But wouldn't it also be just as likely that lower income residents of the area who were forced by rising home prices to move out are now finding housing closer int that is affordable? So, the housing meltdown, such as it is here, isn't it enabling people to who were essentially exiled to the ex-urbs a pardon to come back into civiliation. In other words, far from being marooned here, they are actually permitted to return. Not saying I'm right either, but just pointing out the diffrent possibilities.


    Hating the DC suburbs is also acceptable in my book. Part of the blog is why this area and the DBs who live here are such a pain. Many of the DBs live in places like "Bethesda" and "Arlington", so that's ok.

  5. Cynne Simspon has FAKE hair!

  6. The Anon above interpreted the data correctly. Here is an excerpt from a very recent Associated Press article:

    "--The Washington, D.C., region was among the top 10 numerical gainers, due partly to federal government jobs. Far-flung D.C. exurbs such as Virginia's Loudoun and Prince William counties had flat or declining growth rates, victims of the housing bubble and a spike in gasoline prices." **

    If you follow real estate values closely, you'll see that the "inner core" of the DC metro area has fared among the best locales in the nation in terms of the 'housing' crisis. Gentrification is still taking place in DC, Arlington, and Alexandria. In fact, it may be accelerating now that blighted old homes can be purchased for $300,000 instead of $500,000.

    Conversely, the outer areas such as Prince William County and Loudoun County are among the worst 'housing bubble' locales in the nation. Some McMansions are already being subdivided into group homes, and many neighborhoods have 1 vacant home for every 2 occupied homes. Many exurban areas will be slums ten years from now.

    Another factor in all of this is the price of energy. Wait till the price of a barrel of crude oil returns to the $100+ range again. How will the outer suburban douchebags afford to get to work in the horrible "inner core" areas? Upside down on a $675,000 McMansion that will never be worth more than $350,000 in fair market value, they're hosed. Those who purchased a solidly-constructed brownstone within a half mile of a metro station, renovated it, and outlasted the hipster doofi and gangsters alike, will profit tremendously.

    Good luck.


  7. Every year, United Van Lines publishes its "Migration Report" for the United States. The report shows net population gains and losses for every state and the District.

    Here is an excerpt from the 2008 Report:**

    Mid-Atlantic states came out ahead in 2008, with the District of Columbia (62.1%) reigning as the top destination, North Carolina (58.2%) capturing third place (dropping from the No. 1 spot in 2007) and South Carolina (56.4%) coming in as the seventh highest inbound state. And although it's not considered a high-inbound state, Delaware (54%) showed signs of growth in 2008."

    In fact, DC has been one of the top net gainers for many years.


  8. M@ said that that Post said “Although the District and other inner counties… continued to lose more U.S. residents than they attracted, the loss was substantially less than in previous years.”

    For those who follow such things very closely (such as myself), this is the first I've heard. All other studies and reports indicate otherwise.

    Here is a 2005 article on the sweeping demographic changes in DC, Arlington, and Alexandria. The changes continue up until... last weekend apparently.


  9. "About 4 in 10 immigrants are moving directly from abroad to the nation’s suburbs, which are growing increasingly diverse, according to census figures released yesterday. The Census Bureau’s annual survey of residential mobility also found that after steadily declining for more than a half-century, the proportion of Americans who move in any given year appears to have leveled off at about one in seven. “For blacks, especially, it mimics the 50s-style suburban movement, most pronounced for married couples with children, owners and the upwardly mobile,” said William H. Frey, a Brookings Institution demographer. Dr. Frey’s analysis of mobility patterns found that while Hispanic and Asian immigrants were more likely to settle first in the nation’s cities, “after they get settled, they follow the train to the suburbs.”


  10. and outlasted the hipster doofi and gangsters alike

    DC/MD/VA had gangsters way before these hipster fucktards were old enough to purchase their 1st pair of skinny jeans with their parent's money.

  11. "DC/MD/VA had gangsters way before these hipster fucktards were old enough to purchase their 1st pair of skinny jeans with their parent's money."

    DC/MD/VA had native Americans running around in loinclothes and feather headresses before it had lowlife gangster dipshits living off of welfare and purse-snatchings.

  12. GO FUCK YOURSELF you transplant know it all scumbag!!!!!

  13. If you can't get a job in this region, you should just sneak into Canada and get on welfare.

    I've had to interview DC public school "graduates."

    I wouldn't hire 90% of them to sweep my floor.

  14. When you provoke the gangsterus lowlifeus with cunning insults, they tend to respond with profanity, which coincidentally makes up about 75% of their vocabulary anyway.

    My family was working in DC in the 1930's. Your family was living in a po-dunk town in North Carolina in the 1930's. The only reason you're still in DC is because Fenty hasn't sold out Benning Road to developers...yet, keep voting in politicians that will continue to fail you.

  15. Oh those demographics... they keep on a-changin'...

    Kelsey Gardens: Gone
    Sursum Corda: On the way out

    Land in DC, Arlington, and Alexandria is too valuable to be used as modern day "reservations" for generations of violent, ignorant scumbags living off of welfare and earnings from the sale of crack.

    Thats why we have Prince George's County.

  16. I moved here after college, and life in DC has been very good to me. I arrived with no furniture, some clothes, and a whopping 2000 in the bank. I did not receive financial assistance from anyone.

    During my time here, I bought and sold homes a few homes, took advantage of graduate educational opportunities here, enjoyed the cultural opportunities in the city, the recreational opportunities inside and outside the beltway, and I took advantage of the outstanding career opportunities here.

    Nearly 20 years later I can move away to take advantage of the housing discounts in another part of the country, thanks only to my time and success here. I am far from "marooned", but YMMV.

  17. Hey Marrio, I'm still wondering where I can visit you in "SW" so that I can "check you out"

    Let me know, MmmmmKay?

  18. * I wouldn't hire 90% of them to sweep my floor. *

    No worry. They'll become teachers in the DC public schools. Then we'll wonder why the kids can't read write or speak standard English.

  19. "They'll become teachers in the DC public schools."

    Maybe they'll move to Loudoun County, where things are deteriorating in the Eastern part of the county, housing values have been crushed, municipal services have been slashed, the annual budget deficit stands at $176,000,000 and is growing, etc. Sounds like all the fixin's of slum stew to me.

    "Many of us remember the deteriorating conditions in Sterling Park and surrounding communities in the eastern part of the county making the news last summer. Reports of shootings, rapes and gang violence were common in the press. Zoning infractions were on the rise. Illegal Aliens migrating to the eastern part of our county from other jurisdictions placed an additional burden on those county agencies required to provide order."


  20. Fuck you guys. I inherited money, bought a rowhouse in Shaw at full
    value, and am now complaining to the police about all the hipster riff
    raff in my neighborhood (them and their 'beers' and their 'yeah yeah
    yeahs'). I'm thinking of running for the ANC job too, so I can attract a
    yoga store and dog park and get that art gallery shut down. Anyways,
    back to the grind at my notable lawyer job; I can't wait to get off work
    so I can hop in my Lexus and drive to Trader Joe's/Vineyard Vines!

  21. "I don't expect you to like this post. I expect you to stick that monitor up your ass and have an orgasm."

    I see your parents failed you.

  22. DC is one giant stinking ghetto with a few thousand rich assholes west of the park.

    We should let Louisville take a turn as the nation's capital.

  23. Well, except for the whole Capital Hill, Supreme Court area. That, and Kalorama. Is that West of the Park? I dunno. Adams Morgan is certainly a shithole, but then AM is typically overrun by college boys from Virginia, so I don't blame all that on the residents of AM. Logan Circle? Eh, multi-million dollar homes exist there so I really can't think of that as ghetto. Then there's 16th Street Heights, which is all pretty nice and east of the park. Oh wait! Don't forget all of downtown. That's not ghetto. You might not like it because it is urban and full of asshats from out of town, but it ain't ghetto. Oh, and the National Mall; pretty much everything from the Capitol to the Lincoln Memorial

  24. "We should let Louisville take a turn as the nation's capital."

    Ah, a native Kentuckian, lobbying for his home state. How quaint.

  25. The US Census shows DC is losing population you morons.