Tuesday, November 23, 2010

How California became a Dud

Just read this amazing article by Jennifer Rubin. Sort of a brief 1968-2010 history of how California went wrong. Although I am late in reading it, she pretty much sums up what I have known to be true for a long time about my decrepit, overpriced, bankrupt state of California. She summed up California's demise best for me in these two paragraphs:
California went on an unprecedented spending spree. Between 1990 and 2009, according to a 2009 Reason Foundation report, “state spending—including the General Fund, special funds, and bond funds—has increased 180.9 percent, or an average of 5.91 percent a year. . . . Since FY 1990-91, General Fund spending alone has increased 156.8 percent, or 5.37 percent a year.” The number of state employees soared by almost 40 percent. Per capita spending increased 95.9 percent in the same time period. Despite the common argument that Proposition 13 had starved the state of revenue, cash flowed steadily into Sacramento’s coffers. “Since FY 1990-91,” the Reason Foundation report revealed, “revenues have increased 166.9 percent, or 5.61 percent a year. . . . Based on these revenues, if California had simply limited its spending increases to the 4.38 percent average increase in the state’s consumer price index and population growth each year since FY 1990-91, instead of a $42 billion deficit, the state would be sitting on a $15 billion surplus this year.”
I like Jennifer Rubin because she practiced the same law as I do and then became a journalist and left this nutty state and makes me think I should start thinking about the same.

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