California wants a federal bailout

California, which has tax rates higher in just about every category of taxation than just about every other state, wants a bailout from Washington D.C. 

In typical progressive tone, California essentially demands the bailout, which is to say, California insists that taxes paid by all 50 states expressly to the federal government instead be sent to California.

Why? Because California, despite its gargantuan GDP and despite its onerously burdensome tax rates, needs another $54 billion to plug a hole in the state budget. Perhaps that’s because of its squandering of tens of billions of dollars on utopian frivolities like a high-speed rail that hasn’t rolled a single mile or carried a single passenger after 12 years and billions of dollars of spending. That $54 billion is equivalent to about a third of the state’s entire budget.

How does such a huge government entity in such a resource-, commerce- and technology-rich state manage to get in such dire financial straits? A big first step is to be progressive. And California is to progressives what Al Capone was to gangsters, ruthlessly excessive and blind to consequences.

The Golden State’s unabashedly progressive governor, Gavin Newsom, insists the federal government has a “moral and ethical obligation” to hand over billions to states like his.

Gavin Newsom (Photo credit: Gage Skidmore)

We should stop here and let that thought sink in. Newsom’s sense of “morality” goes to the heart of what it means to be progressive, which is the description that the far-left, aspiring Marxists and would-be socialists give themselves, perhaps thinking it provides them cover.

So-called progressives believe other people’s money belongs to them – they being the progressives, not the other people. To justify this inversion of reality requires redefining many aspects of life that most people instinctively understand. Progressives either don’t get it or refuse to.

All people can agree that charity is a good thing. It’s good for the recipient when the recipient is truly needy. It’s good for the giver, who gives freely out of a sense of love, duty or morality. Both are blessed by the transaction.

As with all things economic, progressives must redefine the term to conform “charity” to their vision of reality. Charity becomes government confiscation of money from the people it belongs to, with or without their consent, so that it may be given to people that progressives decide should have it instead, whether they need it or not.

Under progressive “charity,” the giver need not participate freely or out of a sense of love, duty or morality. Progressives will decide if the giver must give, and how much. The giver may even – and often does – disagree with the taking of his money in taxes, in most cases without consulting him or seeking his approval. The giver also usually has little if anything to do with selecting to whom his money will go and consequently often disagrees with the recipients’ alleged worthiness to receive this largess.

This is the Robin Hood school of charity. Robin being the progressive government that, like the fictional hero, has sole determination of who will benefit from the wealth redistribution. (It’s worth noting that despite the romantic appeal of the archer from Sherwood Forest, Robin was essentially a thief, taking what belonged to someone else and giving it to whomever he decided should get it instead. Perhaps the first progressive.)

Gov. Newsom’s frame of mind is revealing. Politics always has involved deal-making and even groveling to extract something of value from those who have it. Progressivism has turned a corner. Now the petitioner no longer comes ready to make a deal or on bended knees feigning submission. Newsom demands.

Politics also always has involved rough and tumble trade-offs and compromises. Though distasteful, those functions provided checks and balances. To get something, something else had to be given up in trade or concession. We’ve turned the corner from Traditional Politics Boulevard onto the New Way Expressway.

As is typical of progressive thinking, it seems no one thought ahead to where this new path will take us. But it doesn’t take much imagination to see that the first stop will be bankruptcy.

If Newsom gets what he demands of the US government, he will just be the latest. Already this year an extra $3 trillion have been paid out based on little more justification than people simply demanded it. More billions are being queued up in Congress even now.

At what point will the check writing and printing of money to prevent the checks from bouncing end?

Perhaps progressives have thought ahead after all.

Barack Obama said out loud that he intended to “fundamentally transform” America. Don’t believe it. Something far more sinister is intended.

The far left and socialism, which spawned it, and Marxism, which spawned it, all are based on the same premise: a new economic system. Since Marx and Engels this has never been predicated on modifying what exists to fashion a new, improved version. At best, such a “transformation” would be a waystation, not the destination.

“The goal of socialism is communism,” said Vladimir Lenin, who ought to be considered an authority.

What Newsom and his ilk are advancing always has been about tearing down and destroying capitalism and the free enterprise system, then replacing it, not transforming it.

To do that, bankruptcy will be a mere stop en route. Unless this route is changed, the New Way Expressway will be a road to hell, paved with taxpayers’ money.

If you experience technical problems, please write to