Monday, November 08, 2010

Giving up on California

Alyssia Finley of the WSJ has a great column on how the rest of the country feels about California. She coins the term, the "Lindsay Lohan of states."
Listen up, California. The other 48 states—your cousin New York excluded—are sick of your bratty arrogance. You're the Lindsay Lohan of states: a prima donna who once showed some talent but is now too wasted to do anything with it.

After enjoying ephemeral highs and spending binges, you suffer crashes that culminate in brief, unsuccessful stints in rehab. This cycle repeats itself every five to 10 years, as the rest of the country looks on with a mixture of horror and amusement. We'd feel sorry for you if you didn't constantly flip us the bird.

Instead, we're making bets on how long it will be before your next meltdown. Oh, wait—you're already melting down.

You've racked up nearly $70 billion in general obligation debt, and that doesn't include your $500 billion unfunded pension liability. Your own analysts predict you'll face a hole of at least $80 billion over the next four years.

Your government's run by a brothel of environmentalists, lawyers, public-sector unions and legislative bums. When they're not taxing or spending, they're creating regulations and commissions like the Board of Barbering and Cosmetology and the California Blueberry Commission. Many businesses would leave if it weren't for your sunny climate.
Read the rest. She has a great quote from Gavin Newsom on his victory as Lieutenant Governor. It is vapid and meaningless, even by California standards.
"We're nothing but a mirror of our consistent thoughts. You tend to manifest what you focus on. If you look around for what's wrong, you'll find it. But as all we know up here in San Francisco, when you focus on what's right, you see it all around you. . . . There is absolutely nothing wrong with California that can't be fixed by what's right with California. . . . If you're from another state, you'd love to have the problems of California."
When you elect someone like that to public office, you deserve what you get. And remember, the country just gave the House of Representatives to the GOP who will be quite unlikely to bail you out with federal dollars. You've made your own mess and just reelected as governor the guy who gave public-sector employees collective bargaining rights thus setting you on the path you've trod to insolvency today. Your main benefit to the rest of the country today is as a salutary example to the other states who don't want to party along with the Lindsay Lohan of states.


Story said...

Uh.... 48 other states? Ok.... which one of you left the Union?

Story said...

Oooops! missed the New York caveat!

2421Rich said...

California is currently "borrowing" $40 Million a day from the federal government to pay for unemployment benefits. Since there is little chance that will ever be paid back, we are already bailing out California.
It will be interesting to see if the 99 months of unemployment benefits will be extended. I predict the new Republican House will not have the political courage and determination (fortitude) to face the public outcry by cutting off this money drain. Therefore, the California bailout will continue.

lorraine_lanning said...

California needs a dose of tough love, let them sink.

But those who voted for this crap should not move to Colorado. There are already enough of you here trying to turn us into California II.

ChrisA said...

lorraine_lanning... Oh ain't that the truth.

Pat Patterson said...

California is the largest state by population and its the largest state by economy in the US. We pay $80 billion($313 billion vs $235 billion) more in taxes to the federal government then the next closest (Texas or New York) as well as being a member of the states that gets only $.50 on the dollar back. We have the single largest contingent of servicemen in the regulars and the national guard. So if we secede we get half the USMC, all the missiles at Vandenberg plus the naval station at Coronado. As well as having something like 60% of the overseas shipping coming into to LB/LA, SF and Oakland. Plus we get to keep three of the top ten universities in the world and six of the top ten. Which is greater by a factor of three compared to every other state in the union.

Be careful what you wish for as the loss of California immediately makes the rest of the US a second-rate regional economic and military power.

tfhr said...

Pat Patterson,

You also get to "keep" Jerry Brown. Your call.