Would Obama's Second Term Complete the Californication of America?
John's post is paraphrased as "Obama Goes for Kill Shot With Nasty Anti-Romney Ad" on the Most Popular Articles leaderboard at Breitbart.com. When I read about the clip, I was reminded of the vicious ad that Jerry Brown's campaign aired on TV (I saw it in the middle of an NFL game I was watching one Sunday) in late October of 2010 as part of his efforts to successfully destroy Meg Whitman's candidacy in an otherwise remarkably favorable year for the GOP.
As Dennis Prager quipped after Brown's election, "OK, riddle fans, here’s a toughie: What’s the difference between California voters and the passengers on the Titanic? The passengers on the Titanic didn’t vote to hit the iceberg."
Hey, the Titanic couldn't deploy high-speed rail to ram the icebergs. Which is part of the reason why Walter Russell Mead writes today, "'Green' Energy Bias Killing California":
The destruction of California isn’t a victimless crime. Millions of low income California residents are trapped in decaying cities where, thanks in large part to narcissistic green unicorn chasers, the manufacturing base has withered away. And anything that blights California, blights us all. America and the world need California back on line; the Golden State has too much to offer for anyone to remain indifferent to its fate.
Not at all coincidentally, Communist China is no longer the only one-party state for Obama ghostwriter and golfing buddy Thomas Friedman to visit when he descends from his mansion. "Welcome to California: America without Republicans," Conn Carroll writes at the Washington Examiner:
"I believe that if we're successful in this election," President Obama told campaign donors in Minnesota last month, "that the fever may break, because there's a tradition in the Republican Party of more common sense than that."
Apparently Obama believes that if he wins this November, Republicans on Capitol Hill will all begin to act like Chief Justice John Roberts by betraying their conservative beliefs and signing on to Obama's unprecedented expansion of the federal welfare state. But what would America look like if the Republican "fever" did break?
We already know. It would look a lot like the state of California, where no non-cyborg Republican has been governor since 1996. Democrats have also enjoyed complete control of the state legislature since 1997. And they have governed exactly the way you'd expect Democrats to govern.
Spending has more than doubled, from $45.4 billion in 1996 to more than $92.5 billion today. Income, sales and car taxes have all been hiked. As a result, California has the most progressive income tax system in the nation, with seven income tax brackets, and the second-highest top marginal rate.
Even with all those tax hikes, California's 2012 budget is still $15.7 billion in the red. So what does Gov. Jerry Brown want to do? Raise taxes again, of course. He has proposed a ballot initiative that would: 1) raise sales taxes on everyone and 2) raise incomes taxes on those making more than $250,000 a year (like Obama has proposed to do nationally). But even this $8.5 billion tax hike would still leave the state $7.5 billion short. Where will California get that money? Who knows?
Not even Obama's paralegals can save this state. And that's the question America's voters have to ask themselves in November. Do they wish to transform the rest of the nation into bankrupt, reactionary California?
Quite frankly, at the moment, I'm not hopeful about which decision they'll choose.
Related: From Bookworm, "Poor President Obama: If he gets re-elected look at the mess he's going to inherit."