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The Upside-Down World Of San Francisco Policies: Outlawed Cocktail Swords And Subsidized IV Drug Use

by Lee Ohanianvia California on Your Mind
Tuesday, August 21, 2018

The priorities of successful governments are public safety, policies that broadly enhance economic opportunity, and policies that provide a sensible safety net. Alas, I suspect it is hard to find any example of public policies that deviate more sharply from these principles than recent San Francisco policies involving two very different types of sharp objects.


August In Sacramento—Jerry Brown’s Game, Jerry Brown’s Rules

by Bill Whalenvia California on Your Mind
Thursday, August 16, 2018

With all due respect to T.S. Eliot and his grim assessment of April, it’s August in Sacramento that can be “the cruelest month” for ambitious lawmakers.


Two Governor Browns And Two State Budgets: How California Stopped Investing

by Lee Ohanianvia California on Your Mind
Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Look inside Governor Edmund “Jerry” Brown Jr.’s final state budget that was passed in June, and you will see important reasons why California struggles with a host of problems ranging from road congestion to reliable water supplies.


Want A Lot Of Debates Between Gavin Newsom And John Cox? Fat Chance

by Bill Whalenvia Sacramento Bee
Thursday, August 9, 2018

California’s suffering through a frustrating election-year ritual: the two gubernatorial candidates debating over how many times they’re willing to debate. In this Sacramento Bee column, I offer a fix: local media should take the lead and announce four debates – one in Sacramento on taxes and budgets; one in San Francisco on housing and the economy; one in Los Angeles on inclusiveness; one in the Central Valley on the environment and land management.


How California Wildfires Fan Political And Policy Flames

by Bill Whalenvia California on Your Mind
Thursday, August 9, 2018

Where many parts of the United States enjoy four seasons, California experiences only two: wet and dry. It rains in the winter and fall (at least, it’s supposed to). Springtime and summers are predominately arid.

The State

Is California On Your Mind?

by Lee Ohanianvia California on Your Mind
Thursday, August 9, 2018

California on Your Mind is a new biweekly journal from the Hoover Institution about California politics, California policies, and the California economy. This online journal, written by Hoover Senior Fellow Lee Ohanian and Hoover Research Fellow Bill Whalen, fills an important need by delivering detailed, real-time economic and political analysis twice each week about the state that has become the world’s 5th largest economy.


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California on Your Mind is a twice weekly journal about California politics and economic policies, and how they affect California’s economy. At one time, California policies helped create the “California Dream” by fostering affordable housing, creating high quality schools, and facilitating substantial infrastructure investments. These policies helped make California the 20th century destination for thousands of businesses, and for tens of millions of Americans who moved to California from other parts of the country. Today, a very different set of state and local policies is contributing to rapidly increasing housing prices, growing homelessness, lower quality schools, and insufficient public investments.

This journal discusses California political and policy developments in real time, describes how they will affect the California economy, and analyzes how reasonable policy reforms can reduce California’s cost of living, improve California schools, increase public investment, and help restore the “California Dream”.


About the Authors

Lee Ohanian

Lee E. Ohanian is Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and Professor of Economics at UCLA. He is an adviser to the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, and previously has advised other Federal Reserve Banks, Foreign Central Banks, and the National Science Foundation. He has been an economic adviser to state and national political campaigns and has testified to the U.S. Senate and the California State Legislative Assembly on economic policy issues. His research, which recently has been discussed in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and other media sources, focuses on economic policies and economic growth, and as been published widely in a number of peer-reviewed journals. He is a frequent columnist for the Wall Street Journal. He received his Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Rochester.


Bill Whalen, a Hoover Institution research fellow since 1999, writes and comments on California and America’s political landscapes. Whalen is a columnist for the Sacramento Bee and and also writes frequently for Real Clear Politics, The Hill and the Washington Times. He is also the host of Hoover’s Area 45 podcast that explores policymaking and politics as they pertain to the Trump presidency. Prior to joining the Hoover Institution, Whalen served as chief speechwriter and director of public affairs for former California governor Pete Wilson. He’s also served as a strategist for numerous California political hopefuls, including former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. A native of Washington, D.C., Whalen received a B.A. in journalism from Washington & Lee University. ​