The Continued California Disaster
At one time, California was truly the Golden State.
Going back 150 years, the gold rush brought scores of Americans and immigrants to California in search of a better life and a little bit of elbow room.
Fifty years ago, another influx of Americans infected with the “Go west young man” mentality sought the sunshine, openness, diversity, opportunity and ruggedness of the West and California.
Between the hustle and bustle of the fish markets of San Francisco, to the continued allure of Hollywood and entertainment in Los Angeles, the last half of the 20th Century was a boom time for California. Add in the massive growth of the technology sector and the Silicon Valley from the late 1970s on, and nothing seemed to be stopping California from growing and sustaining an amazing lifestyle.
Despite all of this success, and the draw of sunshine and the beach, California finds itself in a mess unlike any it’s ever faced.
Faced with a crushing $19 Billion in debt, mostly brought on by a fat and out of control bureaucracy and a heavy union hand, California is losing its prestige and its population.
Families are leaving the state in droves as the cost of living and high taxes make surviving a daily struggle. The quality of life continues to slide as commutes – even in once sleepy San Diego – lengthen and residents lose services. Despite being a heavily taxed population, Californians enjoy less public services, including open spaces and parks, than the average American in other areas. Californians are faced with decaying roads and infrastructure, cuts in school budgets, and a rash of other economic maladies brought on by irresponsible spending.
Just this week, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has again furloughed thousands of State workers because California simply can’t afford to pay them. In a move to force his out-of-touch legislature to pass a budget which starts to dig the state out of its budget hole, Schwarzenegger is going on the offensive using the furloughs as another way to pressure inactive legislators.
"Without a budget in place that addresses our $19 billion budget deficit, every day of delay brings California closer to a fiscal meltdown," Schwarzenegger said in a statement. "Our cash situation leaves me no choice but to once again furlough state workers until the Legislature produces a budget I can sign."Continued on the next page