Keep an eye on California, the progressive model for America
The headlines today were stark: They reported that California, which just last month was one of the world’s Wuhan virus hotspots, is now the worst state in America when it comes to vaccine distribution. Additionally, Gov. Gavin Newsom is hiding key Wuhan virus information from voters. And of course, there’s the state’s economic despair and hard-left policies. All of these things matter, not just because California is the most populous state in the union, but also because Democrats consider California to be the avatar for a progressive America. As California goes, they boast, so goes the nation.
In August, California ranked fifth in the world for COVID infections and had the third worst death toll in America. By the end of December, California was home to record-breaking infection rates in Los Angeles alone. As of Thursday, the state broke the record in America for the most COVID deaths in a single day: 736. For a while there, it was averaging 534 deaths per day, as the infection ravaged the state.
All of these infections and deaths occurred despite draconian lockdowns and economic destruction, all leavened by extraordinary political hypocrisy. Even as Californians had their immune systems broken by isolation and despair, Gavin Newsom and San Francisco mayor London Breed dined in old-fashioned style at the ritzy French Laundry. Meanwhile, San Jose mayor Sam Liccardo had a big Thanksgiving dinner as other Californians were threatened with arrest if more than three households gathered for the holiday.
Despite Californians dying like flies on his watch, Newsom has done a lousy job vaccinating them: “California now ranks 50th out of 50 states in percentage of shots used.”
Oh, and there’s also the problem of a lack of transparency on Newsom’s part. AP reported that, despite his promise that he would be transparent with Californians about the Wuhan virus, Newsom is hiding key information about how he’s calculating the duration of lockdowns. According to state officials, the information is just so complicated they don’t want to confuse people by telling them when their unconstitutional solitary confinement will end.
Gavin Newsom did have good news about the California economy, though. Despite the destruction of independent businesses across the state that Newsom didn’t think were “essential,” the state is floating in money thanks to the way the lockdowns caused a surge in cash for Silicon Valley. In other words, California’s policies broke the working- and middle-classes and funneled their money to the tech oligarchs.
No wonder there’s fast-growing momentum for a recall petition to oust Newsom from office.
But as you contemplate all this madness, consider the fact that the former “Golden State” has long been the gold standard for Democrat party governance in America. On Friday, Britain’s Guardian newspaper wrote that “‘California is America, only sooner’: how the progressive state could shape Biden's policies: Californians are poised for key jobs in an administration likely to use the state’s efforts as a guiding force”:
The Biden administration’s agenda is also expected to be modeled on some policies enacted or planned in California, and the new administration is likely to use the state’s successes and failures as a guide.
“There is a wealth of ideas on the policy side that can come out of California,” said Manuel Pastor, a professor of sociology and American studies and ethnicity at the University of Southern California. Pastor pointed at the state’s stances on immigrants’ rights and the minimum wage and its investments in climate mitigation.
California has served as a living laboratory for progressive ideas, Pastor said, and there’s enough evidence that will help the federal government embrace the California approach. “California is America, only sooner,” Pastor added. “It’s no surprise that now we have an administration trying to reach into a place that’s always been on the edge of the future.”
According to the Guardian (and I think it’s accurate), Biden is expected to copy California on immigration, massively increased federal minimum wages (which will break states with lower costs-of-living than California’s), and environmental madness. If California really is Biden’s template, the rest of America can look forward to massive surges of illegal immigrants, medieval-style income inequality, all-powerful oligarchs in gated communities, unaffordable energy costs, mentally ill homeless people bringing filth, drugs, and crime to once-livable communities, and all the other madness of the state that was once so golden.
No wonder young Silicon Valley workers, having destroyed California, are packing up their leftism and heading for well-run Republican states across America, which they will then try to destroy. If a young Californian moves into your neighborhood, try to befriend that person and bring him, her, or they to understand that, to receive the full benefit of that new community, relocated Californians need to leave their old politics far behind.
IMAGE: Gold Rush era advertisement. Public Domain.