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George F. Will: California dug its own grave, and it's about to get deeper
Mercury News ^ | 5/3/09 | George Will

Posted on 05/03/2009 2:07:14 PM PDT by NormsRevenge

California's increasingly severe and largely self-inflicted economic crisis will deepen on May 19 if, as is probable and desirable, voters reject most of the ballot measures that were drafted as part of a "solution" to the state's budget deficit. They would make matters worse. ...

Under Arnold Schwarzenegger, the best governor the states contiguous to California have ever had, people and businesses have been relocating in those states. For four consecutive years, more Americans have moved out of California than have moved in. California's business costs are more than 20 percent higher than the average state's. In the last decade, net out-migration of Americans has been 1.4 million. California is exporting talent while importing Mexico's poverty. The latter is not California's fault; the former is.

If, since 1990, state spending increases had been held to the inflation rate plus population growth, the state would have a $15 billion surplus instead of a $42 billion budget deficit, which is larger than the budgets of all but 10 states. Since 1990, the number of state employees has increased by more than a third. In Schwarzenegger's less than six years as governor, per capita government spending, adjusted for inflation, has increased nearly 20 percent.

Liberal orthodoxy has made the state dependent on a volatile source of revenue — high income tax rates on the wealthy. In 2006, the top 1 percent of earners paid 48 percent of the income taxes. California's income and sales taxes are among the nation's highest, its business conditions among the worst. Unemployment, the nation's fourth highest, is 11.2 percent.

Required by law to balance the budget, the Legislature has "solved" the problem by, among other things, increasing the income, sales, gas and vehicle taxes.

(Excerpt) Read more at mercurynews.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Crime/Corruption; Editorial; Extended News; Politics/Elections; US: California
KEYWORDS: calbudget; california; deeper; georgefwill; georgewill; grave; homosexualagenda; libertarians; schwarzenegger; taxandspend
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1 posted on 05/03/2009 2:07:14 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
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The ‘fix’ is in.

The Golden Goo$e is barren.


2 posted on 05/03/2009 2:08:00 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi ... Godspeed.)
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The increase in spending has actually averaged closer to about 10% a year under the Gub.. any inflation adjustment is negligible.

The overall result tho, as the state flounders under democrat rule, is like a bad B movie script unfolding before your very eyes.


3 posted on 05/03/2009 2:11:06 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi ... Godspeed.)
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To: NormsRevenge
Trying to think of any of the many in-laws in California who actually want to live there anymore.

Thinking hard ~ maybe the wife's cousin who was a schoolteacher ~

Naw, she spends a lot of time outside the state these days.

The comment I heard the most on the last trip was "this time let's find someplace with water".

4 posted on 05/03/2009 2:11:24 PM PDT by muawiyah
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To: NormsRevenge

As a Californian here is what I find utterly amazing. NO political will to cut spending. None. Zero. Every solution involves increasing taxes, in one shape or another. Spending cut alternatives are like touching the third rail.

HINT: The budget can be balanced in some measure, rather quickly if illegal immigrants are deported. GASP! Xenophobe alert!!!!


5 posted on 05/03/2009 2:13:44 PM PDT by Drango (A liberal's compassion is limited only by the size of someone else's wallet.)
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To: NormsRevenge
Classic dimocRAT government. Tax and spend. Not one thought of reducing spending with revenues down.
6 posted on 05/03/2009 2:14:48 PM PDT by Parley Baer
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To: NormsRevenge
California is exporting talent while importing Mexico's poverty.

This is because the Democrats have made this official government policy. The reason is not to improve the economic condition of the state and its inhabitants, or even to provide "social justice". The reason is to ensure that Democrats remain in power in California at both the state and nation levels. Democrats do not mind that they are destroying the economy, whatever economy is left will be theirs to control and that's their aim.

7 posted on 05/03/2009 2:17:29 PM PDT by centurion316
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To: NormsRevenge
Will hits on the head:

"California is exporting talent while importing Mexico's poverty...What actually ails California is centrist evasions. The state's crisis has been caused by "moderation," understood as splitting the difference between extreme liberalism and hyperliberalism, a "reasonableness" that merely moderates the speed at which the ever-expanding public sector suffocates the private sector. California has become liberalism's laboratory, in which the case for fiscal conservatism is being confirmed."

8 posted on 05/03/2009 2:19:36 PM PDT by americanophile
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To: Drango
...there's just such a disconnect between what people experience what the vote for. California is truly lala land...people are just totally self-absorbed, and totally irresponsible when it comes to their government. It's truly mystifying.
9 posted on 05/03/2009 2:21:11 PM PDT by americanophile
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To: Drango
NO political will to cut spending. None. Zero.

Why should they? They know they can run to D.C. with their hands out and Obama will give them anything they want. The precedent has been set with the banks and automakers. Blue states are next.

10 posted on 05/03/2009 2:21:56 PM PDT by randita
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To: NormsRevenge

How could state employees possibly increase by 1/3 since 1990?

Many of the major areas of state government- tax calculation and collection, drivers license issuance, welfare and unemployment check cutting- are all basically clerical functions which automation and computerization have really progressed during the past 20 years and actually require fewer employees and man hours to accomplish.

California must really have either left behind the whole computer revolution, added numerous new programs or both during the period in question to “achieve” such a high rate of payroll growth.


11 posted on 05/03/2009 2:25:25 PM PDT by I_Like_Spam
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To: randita; americanophile

At least GM had to face the market place. Civil servants in California are paid above market rates for their talent, face no lay-offs, and have a pension plan that would make Elvis raise from the dead for the generosity they bestow on the so called working stiffs. Alice in Wonder Land.


12 posted on 05/03/2009 2:28:10 PM PDT by Drango (A liberal's compassion is limited only by the size of someone else's wallet.)
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To: NormsRevenge

California is merely a microcosm of the US—export industrial base, import immigrants who hate this country and who will never assimilate. So, what else is new?


13 posted on 05/03/2009 2:28:59 PM PDT by 353FMG
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To: Drango

it’s disgusting


14 posted on 05/03/2009 2:30:13 PM PDT by americanophile
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To: NormsRevenge

I have two very wealthy brothers who live in California. Neither of them bothers to make money anymore. They have fired all their employees and are living off of their interest.


15 posted on 05/03/2009 2:32:40 PM PDT by gridlock (L'Etat, c'est Barack...)
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To: randita
You have something there.

Incredibly, the public entity that I work for here in San Diego County has been sending out videos, memorandums, etc. for weeks bewailing and bemoaning about the budget crisis. We hear how dire things are and about the layoffs that are happening in increasing rapidity.

Yet, a few days ago the administration sent out a hallelujah chorus video to all employees that the dark days are seeing a glimmer of sunshine! Hussein's "economic stimulus" money is beginning to "trickle" our way!

I freakin' kid you not.

16 posted on 05/03/2009 2:33:56 PM PDT by Jagdgewehr
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To: I_Like_Spam

remember that employees are voters too, and a lot of those are unionized.

at both the state and federal level, who are the largest employers these days?

state and federal gubamints.

what is wrong with that picture?


17 posted on 05/03/2009 2:34:31 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi ... Godspeed.)
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To: centurion316
Democrats do not mind that they are destroying the economy, whatever economy is left will be theirs to control and that's their aim.

Spot on.....really sad to see.
18 posted on 05/03/2009 2:37:31 PM PDT by Electric Graffiti (Yonder stands your orphan with his gun)
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To: NormsRevenge
The last lines from this piece by Will (and I'm glad someone woke him from his long nap to knock this one out):

Fortunately, it has handed voters some two-by-fours — the initiatives. Resounding rejections of them should get Sacramento's attention.

I wouldn't count on that, George. Sacramento is a lot like Pete Puma in that famous Bugs Bunny cartoon:

After Bugs (the CA referendum process) keeps serving Pete (Sacramento) "lumps"...

..after a while Sacramento Pete just serves himself:

19 posted on 05/03/2009 2:38:19 PM PDT by Yossarian (Everyday, somewhere on the globe, somebody is pushing the frontier of stupidity...)
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To: Drango
HINT: The budget can be balanced in some measure, rather quickly if illegal immigrants are deported. GASP! Xenophobe alert!!!!

It's much easier for them to label those of us expecting adherence to immigration laws on the books as racists, extremists, and yes, xenophobes. Expecting those in top offices of federal, state, and city governments to obey immigration law is not tolerated by those who call themselves tolerant (they are nothing short of delusional).

Those with special interests for seeing the law broken (activist groups, attorneys, judges and politicians) see bankruptcy of states as just another means to achieve nothing less than total amnesty. It's hard times out here in the USA and about time politicians, lobbyists and activists learned first-hand what unemployment is like, just like the rest of us. If they can't perform their jobs, they should be replaced.

20 posted on 05/03/2009 2:39:00 PM PDT by MamaDearest
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To: NormsRevenge

Arnold Schwarzenegger (D-CA)


21 posted on 05/03/2009 2:42:55 PM PDT by VRWC For Truth (Throw the bums out who vote yes on the bail out)
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To: NormsRevenge

Did those stuck on stupid legislators actually believe that we would be suckered into voting for this slate of money sucking propositions? What part of “spend less” do they not understand?


22 posted on 05/03/2009 2:45:00 PM PDT by Jeff Gordon (I don't trust Obama with my country. Do you?)
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To: NormsRevenge

The ECO GEEKS have Killed the Goose that laid the GOLDEN EGG.


23 posted on 05/03/2009 2:46:07 PM PDT by Ann Archy (Abortion....the Human Sacrifice to the god of Convenience.)
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To: I_Like_Spam
California must really have either left behind the whole computer revolution, added numerous new programs or both during the period in question to “achieve” such a high rate of payroll growth.

They embraced the computer revolution. California has built many failed computer networks. There was a big one some years back that cost between $100 million and $200 million that was scrapped before going online because it didn't work. There are a large number of bureaucrats who order the creation of useless computer generated reports, which in turn require an army of people to maintain. There are clerks whose sole job is to check that reports run each day, and rerun them if needed. I know someone like that, probably puts in 2 hours of honest work in a week.

Different teams of people are needed for installing fiber cable, copper cable, for asbestos abatement whenever cables are run, etc. Then it's all redone. Lots of make-work "jobs".

24 posted on 05/03/2009 2:52:47 PM PDT by roadcat
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To: I_Like_Spam
I_Like_Spam said: "How could state employees possibly increase by 1/3 since 1990?"

California promises help for Southeast Asians with gambling problem

There is no problem insignificant enough to be underserving of our tax dollars.

25 posted on 05/03/2009 3:00:11 PM PDT by William Tell
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To: roadcat

There are a large number of bureaucrats who order the creation of useless computer generated reports, which in turn require an army of people to maintain.
________________________________

If and when job cuts come- because tax increases are unpopular, those jobs are undoubtably safe.

Any job cuts will have to come from the ranks of the police, or prison guards - or some other area which will inconvenience or endanger the public sufficiently that they will come around to accepting tax increases.


26 posted on 05/03/2009 3:02:29 PM PDT by I_Like_Spam
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To: NormsRevenge

“Under Arnold Schwarzenegger, the best governor the states contiguous to California have ever had,....”

How much of the blame should go to the Governor, and how much to the legislature?


27 posted on 05/03/2009 3:03:27 PM PDT by USFRIENDINVICTORIA
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To: Drango

Here’s another one to think about.
Once a govt. agency or whatever is funded, Ya ever hear of it getting de-funded?
I’d say about half of the govt offices and personnel are worthless and should be let go.


28 posted on 05/03/2009 3:16:08 PM PDT by Joe Boucher (yEP,i)
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To: NormsRevenge
Under Arnold Schwarzenegger, the best governor the states contiguous to California have ever had, people and businesses have been relocating in those states.

Most of the businesses are good to have, but most of the Californians are not. In Nevada, we have already seen a large influx of Californians, who have gone a long way toward californicating our state, by supporting the same tax, spend, and overregulate policies which destroyed the economy in their own state.

29 posted on 05/03/2009 3:16:55 PM PDT by 3niner (Hoover turned a recession into a depression, FDR turned it into The Great Depression)
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To: I_Like_Spam
California must really have either left behind the whole computer revolution,...

If you use the technology stupidly, you can be even less efficient than simply doing things by hand.

30 posted on 05/03/2009 3:20:38 PM PDT by 3niner (Hoover turned a recession into a depression, FDR turned it into The Great Depression)
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To: I_Like_Spam

Yeah, the sacred cows like the more than 10,000 child support workers (State Department & local county child support agencys) plus God knows how many Welfare workers and Social workers will remain employed and funded. They are working with the Legislative Analyst’s Office and the California State Association of Counties (CSAC) to show their respective programs as “critical” and “cost-effective” and all those other ridiculous buzz-words these double-chinned, parasitic bureaucrats throw out there while panhandling at the capitol... Like economist Thomas Sowell wrote about, Self-Congratulations as a Basis for Social Policy! In spite of the evidence before us.


31 posted on 05/03/2009 3:20:42 PM PDT by MonicaG (Thank you to our military & veterans, with love & gratitude. XOXOXO)
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To: muawiyah
San Diego
32 posted on 05/03/2009 3:21:17 PM PDT by SoCalPol (Reagan Republican for Palin 2012)
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To: centurion316

You are so right! They do not care at all about the state or its inhabitants. All they want are money and power. Our politicians are no different from the goons who ran the Soviet Union - as long as they have their special privileges, they don’t care if everyone else lives in misery.


33 posted on 05/03/2009 3:22:40 PM PDT by Pining_4_TX
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To: SoCalPol

San Diego, where there is a growth in population and jobs.

Largest concentration of military in the world, largest defense contractors, major bioTech, Telecommunications, etc.


34 posted on 05/03/2009 3:23:14 PM PDT by SoCalPol (Reagan Republican for Palin 2012)
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To: NormsRevenge

bttt


35 posted on 05/03/2009 3:29:04 PM PDT by TWfromTEXAS (Life is the one choice that pro-choicers wonÂ’t support.)
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To: I_Like_Spam

“How could state employees possibly increase by 1/3 since 1990?”

Easy. Hire anybody who applies so long as you fill a quota slot.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2241446/posts


36 posted on 05/03/2009 3:31:36 PM PDT by Polynikes
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To: NormsRevenge
Arnold Schwarzenegger, the best governor the states contiguous to California have ever had

Ain't that the truth.

Schwartzenkennedy is about to get a surprise, a resounding second defeat on a propositions ballot. This one is going to be fun, the girlie man switched sides on the props figuring a big win the second time around, but enough ignorant, selfish, Californicatians have seen the light to defeat the sucker propositions.

Ahnold will be completely powerless, and the state will tear itself apart economically. Vultures be ready, the pickings will be good.

37 posted on 05/03/2009 3:31:41 PM PDT by Navy Patriot (It's obvious from Nancy Pelosi's appearance that she tortures people every day.)
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To: americanophile
California is truly lala land...people are just totally self-absorbed, and totally irresponsible when it comes to their government.

Outta the park!

38 posted on 05/03/2009 3:34:38 PM PDT by Navy Patriot (It's obvious from Nancy Pelosi's appearance that she tortures people every day.)
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To: VRWC For Truth
Arnold Schwarzenegger (D-CA)

Arnold Schwarzenegger (D-CF)

39 posted on 05/03/2009 3:37:16 PM PDT by Navy Patriot (It's obvious from Nancy Pelosi's appearance that she tortures people every day.)
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To: NormsRevenge

Arnold is digging the grave, not us.


40 posted on 05/03/2009 3:48:28 PM PDT by hedgetrimmer
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To: I_Like_Spam
So... how do we fix it? When do we stop complaining about it and get something done? Same thing happens all over the country -- when times are tight, they close fire stations, reduce school budgets, and cut bus routes while they leave the floor sweepers and seat warmers and report monitors in place.

They target the most visible impacts, so voters will get p*ssed off and vote for an increase. Year after year people tolerate this sh*t. How do we get them to make the same reasonable compromises that the rest of us make in a down economy?

It seems like things *miraculously* improve about the time of the next election, so people vote the idiots back in. How do we get the masses of gullible a*ses to see the big picture and change things? And how do we overwhelm the growing number of leaches sucking the government te*t that will always vote for more taxes?

It is time to organize a plan that will cause change. Somehow we need to move beyond complaining.

41 posted on 05/03/2009 3:50:12 PM PDT by GulchBound (Who owns you?)
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To: NormsRevenge

“California/ Tumbles into the sea/ Now that’ll be the day I go back to Annandale”

“My Old School”
Becker/Fagan


42 posted on 05/03/2009 3:54:50 PM PDT by Third Person (there's a fine line between clever and stupid.)
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To: NormsRevenge
California, the great socialist experiment.

FAIL!

Everybody I know in Kali is trying to figure a way to leave.

Must suck to be you.

43 posted on 05/03/2009 4:12:08 PM PDT by upchuck (I'm glad I'm old. Thus I can remember when America was a decent, moral, God fearing country.)
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To: SoCalPol

Do you work for the San Diego Chamber of Commerce?

If not, you should.....those are gorgeous pictures!


44 posted on 05/03/2009 4:14:01 PM PDT by july4thfreedomfoundation (January 20, 2013.....the day Sarah Palin takes the oath of office and our national nightmare ends!)
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To: upchuck
Yeah, his governorship has been the biggest fail since his father tried that jam business during WWII.


45 posted on 05/03/2009 4:26:20 PM PDT by Richard Kimball (We're all criminals. They just haven't figured out what some of us have done yet.)
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To: muawiyah
Trying to think of any of the many in-laws in California who actually want to live there anymore.

I've been in Texas 25 years. Most of that time my dad kept asking when I'd move back to Calif. About 3 years ago, he admitted he sure would like to "get out".

46 posted on 05/03/2009 4:39:41 PM PDT by Professional Engineer (Naturalized Texan)
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To: july4thfreedomfoundation

No, ret. from the legal field with the County Attys.

Many like to lump all of Calif. together. It should be
two or three seperate states.

So much is liberal but San Diego Co. over 3.2 million pop.
is the largest city in the U.S. with a Republican Mayor.
3 of our 5 congressmen are Conservative Republicans.


47 posted on 05/03/2009 4:54:06 PM PDT by SoCalPol (Reagan Republican for Palin 2012)
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To: Drango

Yeah...well the managers of the California pension plan and the suck-up political appointees overseeing the plan need to do some major explaining for the piss-poor performance and aggressive risk exposure by CalPERS and similar state-run plans. Just my opinion, as a tax payer.


48 posted on 05/03/2009 4:54:08 PM PDT by pointsal
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To: SoCalPol

SD is very beautiful.


49 posted on 05/03/2009 5:07:13 PM PDT by ncalburt (Read all about)
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To: ncalburt

Yes, still a few good places in Calif.


50 posted on 05/03/2009 5:11:24 PM PDT by SoCalPol (Reagan Republican for Palin 2012)
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