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California: The Collapse of Politics and the State

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The joke of a budget that passed out of Sacramento today –even more ludicrous tricks to avoid the serious reductions in the sprawling, out-of-control state government combined with sweetheart deals and a punt of the fiscal crisis to the next governor– follows the deeply distasteful episode between Jerry Brown and his aide, an exchange that should have seen the AG and former governor at least immediately and strongly rebuke his aide and probably fire him on the spot.

I have already cast my absentee ballot for Meg Whitman for governor, for Carly Fiorina for senator, against Prop 19 that would encourage California to get stoned instead of sober, and in favor of Prop 23 that would undo the job-killing green posing of the state in favor of jobs and a growing economy.

It is hard to see how the state survives the next two years even if Meg Whitman wins and brings her considerable private sector experience to the massive challenge in front of the state. Sending the always irritating and completely ineffective Barbara Boxer back to a Senate that is certainly going to be even more indifferent to her rantings about global warming even as she insults senior military brass isn’t going to help the state receive the authority it will need to restructure. There’s a crack-up ahead, a huge one, and any semi-serious person knows that we absolutely need Whitman in the governor’s mansion in January and Fiorina as a member of the Senate’s GOP caucus even as Dianne Feinstein works her party’s colleagues to get the authority necessary to get the state stabilized.

Spend some time this weekend helping get Whitman and Fiorina over the finish line, either by getting your absentee in, volunteering at one of the campaigns’ offices, or, if you live out-of-state, by calling your California friends and family. The dead-in-the-water American economy needs its Golden State to turn over and accelerate. If California continues to go backwards, so too will the country.



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