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California City

Author: LAist Studios

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Deep in the Mojave Desert, there is a little town with a big name and a bizarre history: California City. For decades, real estate developers have sold a dream here: if you buy land now, you’ll be rich one day. Thousands of people bought this dream. Many were young couples and hard-working immigrants looking to build a better future. But much of the land they bought is nearly worthless.  In this new podcast from LAist Studios, host Emily Guerin tells a story of money, power and deception. Listen and subscribe wherever you get your podcasts.
7 Episodes
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Emily confronts the owner of Silver Saddle and walks away doubting herself. Plus, Ben becomes part of Silver Saddle's sales machine. California City is a limited series with 8 episodes. Show support by subscribing wherever you get your podcasts. California City sponsors include: Sun Basket is offering $35 off your order when you go right now to SUNBASKET.com/calcity and enter promo code calcity at checkout. Try SimpliSafe today at SimpliSafe.com/CALCITY. You get free shipping and a 60-day risk free trial. There’s nothing to lose.
Ken Donney is a hero to some, but most people would call him a villain.  California City is a limited series with 8 episodes. Show support by subscribing wherever you get your podcasts. California City sponsors include: Sun Basket is offering $35 off your order when you go right now to SUNBASKET.com/calcity and enter promo code calcity at checkout.
Soldiers of the Sale

Soldiers of the Sale

2020-07-2741:46

Nat builds an army of salespeople to sell his dream. And then, then Ralph Nader intervenes. California City is a limited series with 8 episodes. Show support by subscribing wherever you get your podcasts. California City sponsors include: Sun Basket is offering $35 off your order when you go right now to SUNBASKET.com/calcity and enter promo code calcity at checkout.
A Man with a Dream

A Man with a Dream

2020-07-2041:473

The vision that Ben Perez was sold in 2017 began in 1958, with one man's dream to build a utopian desert city from scratch.
In 2017 Ben Perez goes to a Mojave Desert resort for a free vacation and ends up signing away his life savings. Turns out Ben is one of tens of thousands to believe a version of this dream over the past 60 years.
It was supposed to be a simple story about the California drought. Instead, reporter Emily Guerin became obsessed with the bizarre history of a sprawling, half-built desert city.
Deep in the Mojave Desert, there is a little town with a big name and a bizarre history: California City. For decades, real estate developers have sold a dream here: if you buy land now, you’ll be rich one day. Thousands of people bought this dream. Many were young couples and hard-working immigrants looking to build a better future. But much of the land they bought is nearly worthless.  In this new podcast from LAist Studios, host Emily Guerin tells a story of money, power and deception.
Comments (7)

Danielle Luther

Kudos to you, Emily Guerin, for shedding light on this long term and horrendous scam. I am 💯% sure that other, high ranking politicians (that also share the title of Real Estate mogul), got rich this exact same way. Translation = by taking other people's hard earned money and taking advantage of individuals.

Jul 31st
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Tammy Maggard Garcia

Great story Great storyteller!

Jul 28th
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Helen Turner

very poor sound quality except for narration

Jul 27th
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Incredible Similarity

@ 2:05. third largest city in California. Ha. not even close. Where do you get your information from I ask.

Jul 27th
Reply (1)

Shari Lynn

Not surprising that real estate agent Catherine has a bumper sticker for Trump as she is a fan (mark) of another con man, Nat Mendelssohn, the developer behind California City.

Jul 22nd
Reply (1)
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