Once a bountiful state, full of riches and opportunities, California has lost its golden status and continues to decline. From the exorbitant cost of real estate to punishing children for addressing their classmates with the wrong pronoun, Gov. Jerry Brown and leftist lawmakers are tearing the state to the ground.
California can be divided into four sections: northern, southern, central, and the coast. Mountainous Northern California is the home of the Napa Valley – the flourishing wine country. Southern California’s claims to fame are Hollywood and Silicon Valley. The Central Valley is all agriculture and farming, while the coast brings “Bay Watch” to mind – though most people wouldn’t be able to afford much more than a cardboard box to live in there.
These four areas have very different demographics and needs, but the legislators and Gov. Brown don’t take that into account. For example, a couple of years ago, the prevailing wage went into effect that forces all of California to pay the same price for city and county work on roads and other jobs that are funded in part by state grants.
The problem is that the prevailing wage is set to San Francisco and Los Angeles standards; the wealthiest areas in the state, which do not reflect the reality of the rest of the state. The Central Valley is quite poor. The majority of citizens in this area live paycheck to paycheck – squeaking by with barely two pennies to rub together at the end of the day. Jobs are hard to come by, and most of them are low paying. On the flip side, the cost of living is much cheaper.
Cities in the Valley do not have the funds to be able to afford the high prevailing wage set by the state. Nor are they able to pay for road improvements and other projects from their own coffers, without state-funded grants.
Meanwhile, taxes are raised quicker than the blink of an eye. Big companies, such as Tesla, are leaving the area and taking badly needed jobs with them because doing business there is just too expensive. The cost of gasoline is 30 to 40 cents per gallon higher than the neighboring Left Coast states of Oregon and Washington because California uses a special fuel that is supposed to reduce pollution.
Into this crazy mix, Brown allowed thousands of undocumented immigrants to get driver’s licenses. He approved the early release of thousands of criminals, letting them loose on unsuspecting citizens. Brown also decided some crimes didn’t deserve the punishment they were allotted and reduced them from felonies to misdemeanors. Case in point: It is now a misdemeanor (formerly a felony) to knowingly infect someone with AIDS. The reasoning? There is a treatment for the disease now, and it is no longer a certain death sentence.
The golden child of the nation is no more. California has fallen from its pedestal and is quickly becoming the black sheep of the states.