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Introduction
Introduction

More Money, But More Or Fewer Problems? The State Of The Golden State’s Public Schools

by Bill Whalenvia Eureka
Wednesday, August 21, 2019

By this month’s end, an annual California migration will have occurred—a mass movement that, in sheer numbers, puts the swallows of San Juan Capistrano to shame.

Featured Commentary
Featured Commentary

After A Year As Los Angeles’s School Superintendent, Learning To Separate Facts From Myths

by Austin Beutnervia Eureka
Wednesday, August 21, 2019

A first-generation American, son of a factory worker and a schoolteacher, attends public schools. which provide him with a great education.

Featured Commentary

California Can Reform K–12 And Medi-Cal, Or Face A Future Of Perpetual Tax Hikes

by David Cranevia Eureka
Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Here’s another way to look at the complicated question of California’s commitment to public education in these flush economic times, with some compelling illustration of the state’s finances. And an unsettling conclusion: more and more tax increases will be the Golden State’s fate unless lawmakers get serious about reforming two large portions of California’s budget—K–12 schools and Medi-Cal, which account for more than one-half of California’s General Fund spending.

Teachers picket in La Habra last December
Featured Commentary

Teacher Strikes Are Not Going To Help California’s Students

by Eric Hanushekvia Eureka
Wednesday, August 21, 2019

When teachers in Los Angeles and Oakland went on strike earlier this year, they got a considerable amount of public support. This support is not too surprising, because there is widespread belief that teachers are underpaid. Now that the strikes have been settled, how should we view these actions?

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School Buses

Proposition 30 Fails the Test of Honest Education Reform

by Williamson M. Eversvia Eureka
Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Here are four reasons to be concerned about Proposition 30:

The Great 30/38 Debate: Spinning K-12 Achievement and Spending Numbers

by Autumn Cartervia Eureka
Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The debate about California’s Propositions 30 and 38 has zeroed in on what has become the crux of a much larger (and unsettled) debate – the state of education in the Golden State.  Beginning with discussion of Californians’ existing tax burden, the debate transitioned quickly

Californians Take Initiative...Or Is It The Other Way Around?

by Bill Whalenvia Eureka
Tuesday, October 30, 2012

With its 11 p.m. closing time on the East Coast, West Coast powerhouse California is the last of America’s largest states to have a say in this year’s election.

Some would add: last and least.

California and Pension Reform: The Problem...The Solution

by Bill Whalenvia Eureka
Thursday, August 23, 2012

To understand California’s experience with pension reform, think of the Golden State’s legislature as a child – a child with a tricycle.

California Capitol

Real Pension Reform: A California Design

by Joshua D. Rauhvia Eureka
Thursday, August 23, 2012

California could be the leader of real pension reform by rejecting the flawed national accounting standards for public pensions, measuring pension liabilities using government bond yields, and linking part of the benefit to investment performance for all workers.

Rising Pension Costs Threaten Cities’ Ability to Provide Services

by Chuck Reedvia Eureka
Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The skyrocketing cost of public employee retirement benefits is one of the greatest threats facing cities across California.

Making Sense of the Mathematics Of California’s Pension Liability

by Autumn Cartervia Eureka
Tuesday, August 21, 2012

When it comes to pension funding, Californians should be able to get a straight answer to the following question: How much have the state and municipal governments promised to pay California public employees upon their retirements?

With Retirement Costs Consuming One-Fifth of Discretionary Spending, California Must Reduce Un-Accrued Pension Benefits

by David Cranevia Eureka
Monday, August 20, 2012

Pensions and other retirement costs will consume more than 23% of discretionary state spending in fiscal year 2012-13, according to the budget recently passed by the California State Legislature and signed by Governor Jerry Brown – nearly three times the share taken up by reti

California State Parks and “Unbuilding” the Golden State

by Pete Petersonvia Eureka
Friday, August 3, 2012

In a popular appearance on CNN’s “GPS” program last fall, arch-Keynesian economist Paul Krugman wondered whether a possible route

You know you've hit rock bottom when you've offended France

by Bill Whalenvia Eureka
Monday, July 9, 2012

Summertime in America brings television re-runs and cinematic comedies.

Give California’s Legislature credit, then, for handing its constituency a dose of both: more of the same bad practices, plus choices that would be funny if they weren’t so misguided.

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California On Your Mind

Eureka was created to serve as an occasional discussion of the policy, political and economic issues confronting California. Like the Golden State motto from which this forum’s title was borrowed, the goal here is one of discovery – identifying underlying problems and offering reasonable and common-sense reforms for America’s great nation-state.

Ever since Archimedes supposedly first uttered the word, eureka has meant joy, satisfaction and a sense of accomplishment. Drawing on the combined wisdom of Hoover’s policy experts and leading California thinkers, we hope that you’ll find enlightenment in these pages. Hoover research fellow Bill Whalen, who has nearly two decades of experience in California politics and public policy, serves as this forum’s editor.