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Portal:California

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Seal of California.
Location of California within the United States.
Flag of California.svg

California is a state in the Pacific Region of the United States. With 39.5 million residents across a total area of about 163,696 square miles (423,970 km2), California is the most populous U.S. state and the third-largest by area, and is also the world's thirty-fourth most populous subnational entity, and is the most populated subnational entity in North America. The state capital is Sacramento. The Greater Los Angeles Area and the San Francisco Bay Area are the nation's second- and fifth-most populous urban regions, with 18.7 million and 9.7 million residents respectively. Los Angeles is California's most populous city, and the country's second-most populous, after New York City. California also has the nation's most populous county, Los Angeles County, and its largest county by area, San Bernardino County. The City and County of San Francisco is both the country's second most densely populated major city after New York City and the fifth most densely populated county, behind only four of the five New York City boroughs.

California's economy, with a gross state product of $3.0 trillion, is the largest sub-national economy in the world. If it were a country, California would be the fifth-largest economy in the world (larger than the United Kingdom, France, or India), and the 37th-most populous . The Greater Los Angeles Area and the San Francisco Bay Area are the nation's second- and third-largest urban economies ($1.3 trillion and $1.0 trillion respectively ), after the New York metropolitan area ($2.0 trillion). The San Francisco Bay Area PSA had the nation's highest gross domestic product per capita in 2018 ($106,757) among large primary statistical areas, and is home to four of the world's ten largest companies by market capitalization and four of the world's ten richest people.

California culture is considered a global trendsetter in popular culture, communication, information, innovation, environmentalism, economics, politics, and entertainment. As a result of the state's diversity and migration, California integrates foods, languages, and traditions from other areas across the country and around the globe. It is considered the origin of the American film industry, the hippie counterculture, barbecue, fast food, beach and car culture, the Internet, and the personal computer, among others. The San Francisco Bay Area and the Greater Los Angeles Area are widely seen as centers of the global technology and entertainment industries, respectively. California's economy is very diverse: 58% of it is based on finance, government, real estate services, technology, and professional, scientific, and technical business services. Although it accounts for only 1.5% of the state's economy, California's agriculture industry has the highest output of any U.S. state.

California shares a border with Oregon to the north, Nevada and Arizona to the east, and the Mexican state of Baja California to the south. The state's diverse geography ranges from the Pacific Coast in the west to the Sierra Nevada mountain range in the east, and from the redwood and Douglas fir forests in the northwest to the Mojave Desert in the southeast. The Central Valley, a major agricultural area, dominates the state's center. Although California is well-known for its warm Mediterranean climate, the large size of the state results in climates that vary from moist temperate rainforest in the north to arid desert in the interior, as well as snowy alpine in the mountains. Over time, drought and wildfires have become more frequent.

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A 1946 Nixon campaign flyer
In California's 12th congressional district election, 1946, the candidates were five-term incumbent Democrat Jerry Voorhis, Republican challenger Richard Nixon, and former congressman and Prohibition Party candidate John Hoeppel. Nixon was elected with 56% of the vote, starting him on the road that would lead, almost a quarter century later, to the presidency. For the 1946 election, Republicans sought a candidate who could unite the party and run a strong race against Voorhis in the Republican-leaning district. After failing to secure the candidacy of General George Patton, they settled on Lieutenant Commander Richard Nixon, who had lived in the district prior to his World War II service. Various explanations have been put forward for Nixon's victory, from national political trends to red-baiting on the part of the challenger. Some historians contend that Nixon received large amounts of funding from wealthy backers determined to defeat Voorhis, while others dismiss such allegations.


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The Huntington Library
Credit: Aaron Logan

The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens (or The Huntington) is an educational and research institution established by Henry E. Huntington in San Marino, California, USA. In addition to the library, the site houses an art collection strong in English portraits and French eighteenth-century furniture and botanical gardens that feature North America's strongest collection of cycads.

State facts

  • Total area: 163,696 mi2
    • Land: 156,002 mi2
    • Water: 7,694 mi2
  • Highest elevation: 14,505 ft ( Mount Whitney)
  • Population 39,250,017 (2016 est)
  • Admission to the Union: September 9, 1850 (31st)

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Selected biography

Bertrand Russell in 1907
Bertrand Arthur William Russell, 3rd Earl Russell, OM, FRS (18 May 1872–2 February 1970), was a philosopher, historian, logician, mathematician, advocate for social reform, and pacifist. Although usually regarded as English, he was born in Wales. A prolific writer, he was a populariser of philosophy and a commentator on a large variety of topics. Continuing a family tradition in political affairs; he was a prominent anti-war activist, championing free trade between nations and anti-imperialism. He also authored Principia Mathematica (with Alfred North Whitehead), an attempt to ground Mathematics on the laws of Logic and the essay On Denoting. Both books have had a considerable influence on Logic, Set Theory, Linguistics and Analytic Philosophy. Bertrand Russell was born at the height of Britain's economic and political ascendancy.

When he died almost a century later, the British Empire had all but vanished, its power had been dissipated by two world wars and its imperial system had been brought to an end. Among his post–Second World War political activities, Russell was a vigorous proponent of nuclear disarmament, antagonist to communist totalitarianism and an outspoken critic of the Vietnam War.

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The Hollywood Sign

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Goat Rock Beach

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Ricky Williams
If you want to surf, move to Hawaii. If you like to shop, move to New York. If you like acting and Hollywood, move to California. But if you like college football, move to Texas.

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Crystal Mountains
Credit: Phreakdigital

The Crystal Range is a small group of mountains located within the Desolation Wilderness in the U.S. state of California. It is a subrange of the Sierra Nevada. The highest and most southerly peak is Pyramid Peak at 9987 ft; Mount Agassiz is next north at 9967 ft, with Mount Price (9975 ft) rounding out the southern group of peaks. Tells Peak is the northernmost named peak in the range.

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