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Klavan On The Culture

Reclaiming California

July 25th, 2013 - 7:06 am

If California were not paradise, it would be empty. This great and beautiful state has been so badly governed for so long, it is on the brink of creative stagnancy and economic ruin. Fortunately, some brilliant folks at the Manhattan Institute’s City Journal have excellent ideas on how the state can be saved. Watch this video, featuring many brilliant people (and me), then buy The Beholden State: California’s Lost Promise and How to Recapture It, featuring essays by many brilliant people. And me.

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I'm living in Greece, which has California's climate, plus an unbelievably constrictive economic situation because of the country being co-opted by the Germans and the IMF, which is because Greeks have behaved irresponsibly, fiscally.

What you are seeing here are all kinds of clever workarounds that enable a lot of people to at least barely get by, like, for example, the use of social media for produce growers to sell directly to people in the parking lots of soccer stadiums, instead of being forced to sell at prices dictated by the EU in more legal venues. The cops just shrug and look the other way.

The thing about Americans is that we're flexible thinkers. I really like what the City Journal does. They're right on the cusp of major change across the board in California. I find this fascinating. One hopes that Californians are looking at the mess that is Detroit, for instance, and thinking about it. Things have to change out of economic necessity. Couple that with, as you say, the democratization of the entertainment/publishing industry, and the playing field suddenly gets leveled for ambitious, creative conservatives who need to step up and relearn the art of good storytelling, which will insinuate itself into the culture at large.

You guys are fighting the good fight out there. Keep it up. My guess is that in 20 years, when I'm an old fart, California will be a completely different place, and a much better one at that.
1 year ago
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It occurs to me that California will have an enormously longer glide path to destruction than Detroit. I'm guessing forty more years will be needed to completely drain the last dregs of wealth out of it. The only hope of speeding up the recovery is cutting off the federal bailout dollars now. Otherwise bailing out California for the next forty years will turn the US into something more bankrupt than Greece. Then again, we're heading there anyway, maybe it's best if we all reach the bottom together at the same time. Misery does love company.

1 year ago
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