Yeah we are getting a bit off topic here, but it's okay to complain about a place and still enjoy living there. Nowhere is perfect. California is expensive and has some annoying laws when it comes to registering and smogging older cars and trucks. Absolutely no inspection of your vehicle otherwise, unlike many other states. If you are pre-1976 then your registration is a bit cheaper and no smog laws to worry about.
There is the added benefit in the southwest of being able to work on virtually rust-free cars most of the time. I've worked for many years as an auto tech and let me tell you working on rust-free cars is fantastic when you have to do it 40 hours a week. We always dreaded seeing the rare car come in with an out of state plate. Heck even most cars I saw with Oregon and Washington plates were more of a pain to work on. Yes one can learn to work on rustbucket cars with the proper tools, patience, and experience but it's a PITA when 90% of the cars you work on are clean and rust free. I actually grew up in the mountains of California and saw a lot more rust than your average Californian due to the snow.
I probably won't live in California my entire life, but I don't see a few annoying laws and expenses making me uproot my life and leave my friends and family behind. Everywhere has it's upsides and downsides, but California is one of the most diverse places on Earth. You've got beaches, mountains, deserts, cities, forests, etc. You can go skiing and surfing on the same day. You can tour big cites or do redneck
in the middle of nowhere. You can still own guns, it's just a little more regulated. There's a reason it's the most populated state. It may not be for everyone, but it's worth the extra cost and occasional legal hassle to me.
PS Sorry again for getting off topic, I'll shut up now