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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.

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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.

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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
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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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“A New Normal”: California’s Increasing Wildfire Risk And What To Do About It

by Alice Hill, William Kakenmastervia Eureka
Thursday, May 24, 2018

As soon as it hit in October 2017, officials knew the Tubbs Fire was serious. “It’s real bad,” said Cal Fire Battalion Chief Marshall Tuberville. “This is an example of nature in control.”

Introduction

Forget About The Weather: In California, Everybody Talks About Livability— But Nobody Does Anything About It

by Bill Whalenvia Eureka
Thursday, May 24, 2018

A funny thing about California: in the 1950s, it was a nice place to visit, but you didn’t necessarily want to live there

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California’s Green Governor: A Climate Hero With A Wrinkled Cape

by Dan Jacobsonvia Eureka
Thursday, January 25, 2018

When Californians look back a generation from now on the environmental legacy of Governor Jerry Brown, what will they see?

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Absent For Too Long: Urgently Addressing California School Truancy

by Austin Beutner, LaPhonza Butlervia Eureka
Thursday, January 25, 2018

A quality public education is the right of every child and the foundation of every community. A good education is the best path out of poverty and will provide every child with a chance to succeed in life. Yet in Los Angeles less than 30 percent of students meet state standards in math; less than 40 percent of students meet state standards in English. Only one-third of LA Unified School District’s 2015/16 graduating cohort met the standards to apply to California’s public universities. Another 25 percent did not graduate.

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California Should Address Licensing Reform – And Stop Adding Violins To The String Section

by David Cranevia Eureka
Thursday, January 25, 2018

In 1850 California passed its first professional licensing law requiring foreigners to buy a monthly license to mine gold. During the next hundred years the state so dramatically expanded its licensing regime that by 1950 one in every twenty workers required a license. Today one in five working Californians requires a license from the state government; a recent study found that California is the most broadly licensed state in the nation.

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Can California Save Itself From A Pension Disaster?

by Joshua D. Rauhvia Eureka
Thursday, January 25, 2018

The California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) and other pension systems in the Golden State might be celebrating their recent investment returns, but don’t be fooled. Their problems are nowhere close to solved — and those problems are taxpayers’ problems.

Introduction

A New Year, A California Governor’s Final Year, A Lot Of Unknowns

by Bill Whalenvia Eureka
Thursday, January 25, 2018

California governors don’t make New Year’s resolutions – publicly, at least. The closest they come to vows of self-improvement is the annual State of the Address, delivered every January before a joint session of the State Legislature.

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For Sacramento, Will This Be A Year Of Opportunities Taken Or Missed?

by Catharine Bakervia Eureka
Thursday, January 25, 2018

Now that the 2018 legislative session has begun and Governor Jerry Brown has delivered his last State of the State address, Capitol leaders are faced with a year of opportunities.

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While Other Nations Fear The “Silver Tsunami,” The Golden State Should Learn To Surf The Coming Aging Wave

by Greg Lucasvia Eureka
Tuesday, November 7, 2017

It’s time to finally ditch the “Silver Tsunami” label about longevity.  By 2020 one in five Californians—about 8 million residents of America’s nation-state—will be aged sixty years or older.  That ratio will climb to one in four by 2030. 

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Jerry Brown Meets Doc Brown: Has California Gone “Back To The Future” On Taxes And Crime?

by Joel Foxvia Eureka
Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Despite changing demographics and a sharp veer to the ideological left, is it possible that California could take a political trip back to the future as two staples resurface that drove the state’s politics in the more conservative 1980s and 1990s? Look around and you’ll see indications that even in this liberal bastion on the left coast, the issues of taxes and crime are stirring again.

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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.