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Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Issue 2001: Free Advice

Introduction
Introduction

Advice For The Governor: Fix A Bad Labor Law, Beware Of Tax Increases—And Focus On Narrowing The State’s Social Divide

by Bill Whalenvia Eureka
Tuesday, February 11, 2020

If the first month of the first year of the century’s second decade is an indication, Californians are in for a long 2020.

Featured Commentary
Featured Commentary

Advice For The Governor: Clean Up A Made-In-California Mess

by John Kabateckvia Eureka
Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Dear Governor Newsom, Some escaped while others were left behind. As a result, workers in nearly forty independent contractor classifications can continue to enjoy the freedom of being their own boss while those formerly free independent contractors in nearly fifty classifications will either be forced to be an employee of someone else or, much more likely, simply lose work altogether.

Featured Commentary

A Suggestion For The Governor: The Best Way To Raise Revenue Is To Allow Businesses To Create New Jobs, Not To Support The Largest Tax Increase In State History

by Rob Lapsleyvia Eureka
Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Dear Governor Newsom, In early January, you released your proposed state budget for the next fiscal year. Thanks to a sustained economic recovery within the business community, the state has near-full employment and $78 billion more in total budget tax revenue since 2010–11.

Featured Commentary

Advice For The Governor: Build Up The Affection Between Californians And Their Regions

by Joe Matthewsvia Eureka
Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Dear Governor Newsom, Back in December, the high school football team in El Monte, a working-class immigrant suburb in the San Gabriel Valley, rode buses 13 hours and 750 miles to Crescent City, a poor town in California’s northwestern corner. Until the last minute, there had been doubt whether the team could make the trip. 

Featured Commentary

Advice for the Governor: Don’t Overplay Your Trump Card

by Bill Whalenvia Eureka
Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Dear Governor Newsom: First, I’d like to wish you a productive and prosperous 2020. It’s your second year in office; you have an ambitious agenda and, thanks to a strong economy and a generous revenue stream, the resources to make some of that vision a reality. Good luck making that so.

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Featured Commentary

California’s History Curriculum–Objectionable, Not Objective

by Williamson M. Eversvia Eureka
Thursday, August 17, 2017

By law, textbooks and other teaching materials in California’s public schools are supposed to be up-to-date. Yet history textbooks that are currently in the schools are twelve-years old.

Featured Commentary

Driving Californians Out Of Their Cars: Painful, Inconvenient–And Perhaps Downright Undemocratic

by Loren Kayevia Eureka
Thursday, May 25, 2017

In a state whose locals are obsessed not only with curbing waste but trimming their waistlines, it should come as no surprise some lawmakers in Sacramento want to put California on a “road diet.”

Featured Commentary

Crisis Management For California Infrastructure: Fifty Years After The Last Big Buildup, Time To Envision The Next Fifty Years

by Kevin Klowdenvia Eureka
Thursday, May 25, 2017

If Governor Edmund “Pat” Brown’s greatest legacy is the physical and intellectual infrastructure of highways, water systems, and universities that transformed California to a nation-state and a global economic force, his son, Governor Jerry Brown, may be remembered best as the guy who tried to fix it all after decades of neglect.

Featured Commentary

The California Economy Needs Tax Reform–Not More Special Tax Breaks

by Daniel Heilvia Eureka
Thursday, May 25, 2017

Soon before his presidency reached its 100-day mark, Trump addressed a major campaign promise by offering his vision for tax reform. The Trump plan promises to cut rates, slash loopholes, and simplify the tax code. As more details of the plan emerge, however, the president will learn a lesson familiar to countless would-be reformers: tax reform is easy on paper and nearly impossible in reality.

Introduction

California’s Economy–Lots of Zeroes, Lots of Contradictions Having to Do with Wealth, Opportunity, and Livability

by Bill Whalenvia Eureka
Thursday, May 25, 2017

Good luck trying to get your arms–and your head–around the enormity of California’s economy. Last month, the state’s 2015 gross domestic product (GDP: a measure of goods and services) was calculated at $2.46 trillion. That’s trillions, folks, with nine zeros–as in nine shutout innings from Clayton Kershaw, nine Oscar losses suffered by Peter O’Toole and Harrison Ford, or nine months without rain in an area that not so long ago was mired in a historic drought.

Golden State Poll Analysis

Californians On The California Economy: Results From The May 2017 Golden State Poll

by Tammy Frisbyvia Eureka
Thursday, May 25, 2017

This spring saw the routine preparations for the annual May Revision of California’s proposed state budget disrupted by the political bargaining required to raise the gas tax for the first time in 23 years. In the midst of that unusual political scene, the Hoover Institution’s Golden State Poll surveyed Californians about their economic well-being and their opinions on economic policies that impact the nation-state’s global-sized GDP including infrastructure spending and a possible revisit of the property-tax limiting Proposition 13.

Golden State Poll Analysis

Voters’s Views On Sacramento And What A Trump White House Means For California

by Tammy Frisbyvia Eureka
Thursday, January 19, 2017

The most recent Golden State Poll had a lot of ground to cover. For the fourth January in a row, we asked Californians to reflect on the state’s government, public policy, and politics just as the governor is about to do the same in his yearly address to the state at the end of the month. 

Featured Commentary

That Impossibly Divided California You’ve Read About? Actually It’s Far More Politically Diverse And Competitive

by Samuel J. Abramsvia Eureka
Thursday, January 19, 2017

With the votes tallied, the 2016 electoral map of the Golden State once again appears to be deeply divided. The old north-south divide of earlier decades has given way to an east-west divide with narratives regularly speaking of a liberal, prosperous coast and a conservative and impoverished inland: two politically distinct “Californias.”

Featured Commentary

What’s Wrong With Sanctuary Cities? What Might Be Done? How Might It Affect California?

by Timothy Kanevia Eureka
Thursday, January 19, 2017

Donald Trump’s immigration policies were widely mischaracterized during the 2016 election campaign. Time and again media critics described Trump as a racist who opposes immigration.

Featured Commentary

What Should California Expect From TrumpCare? Here Are Five Predictions For The Coming Rx

by Scott W. Atlasvia Eureka
Thursday, January 19, 2017

“Repeal and replace”–the mantra of the Republican opposition to the Affordable Care Act (ACA)–is about to become a reality.

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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.