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And I Buried The Lead...

Geoff Metcalf
January 12, 2003

California is facing a series of reality checks that could/would lead to catastrophic results.

Many in other parts of the country say, “So what?  The land of fruits and nuts deserves whatever they get.”  However, despite the regional immediacy, the success or failure of California WILL impact significantly on the rest of the country.

Faced with a $36-Billion budget deficit of it’s own making liberal California Democrats have positioned the state for a personification of “payback is a bitch”.  Unfortunately it will be Californians who will be paying and paying and paying….

If the two-year shortfall reaches Davis' new predictions, it will eclipse the largest ever experienced in California.  Davis started his first two years in office with multibillion-dollar surpluses…a distant memory that will remain an unrequited erotic dream.

Despite democratic denial, the imperative that has sparked a proposed $20.7 billion in budget cuts (including $4.5 billion to education) and an inevitable avalanche of new taxes shallowly disguised, as “fees and assessments” is a product of their own making.

Davis has pitched a 1-cent sales tax increase.  Hey, come on, it’s only a penny?  That penny would raise about $4.5 billion and would cost the typical family about $200 to $250 a year. But that isn’t nearly enough.  The governor also called for increasing income taxes for the state's top earners and a $1.10 per pack cigarette tax hike.

Tax and spend democrats (who control the governors office and the legislature) have been enabled by liberal left over flower children in Armani in the high population centers of the state.

All one needs to do is revisit the Election 2002 map of Red and Blue [].  Gore won California because of San Diego, Los Angeles, and San Francisco Bay area.

Those metroplexes have the highest population density in the state and they invariably lean way left.  The bulk of California’s land mass showed red on that election results map.

The reality is more gross numbers of Californians ARE liberal.  However those gross numbers come from high population density quagmires of goo-goo leftist liberalism.

So in once sense California deserves the government they have elected.  The only caveat might be that invariably the democrats who DO get elected in California are far more liberal (and rabid) than the constituencies that elect them.

I have too often noted that there are consequences to the things we do and don’t do.  California is about to realize a host of negative consequences to their penchant for enabling extreme liberal democrats.

Liberal democrats have literally been ‘enabled’ by four myopic special interest groups with lots of money.

1.    The Hollywood crowd with more money and media access than good sense.

2.    The middle-aged former flower children and Woodstock pilgrims who are now ruling fiefdoms in Sacramento.

3.    The unbridled immigration advocates who have successfully skewed the states demographics on the road to Azatlan.

4.    The homosexual activists who defy reason with noise and money.

As Davis (and his successors) attempt to staunch the hemorrhage of their own making it is both sadly just that the liberal enablers will reap what they have sown, and tragic that tens of millions of California’s will suffer the consequences of abuse of power.

Here’s the deal.  California needs to use a meat clever not a scalpel on the budget.  They won’t. 

*    The inevitable result will be a growing need for more and more money from taxpayers. 

*    Middle class Californians and small businesses that had resisted the obvious imperative WILL begin a migration to more friendly and reasonable states (Nevada, Oregon, New Mexico, Arizona, Texas, even Washington).

*    California will suffer a reduction in the tax base when they most need it.

*    California will become a marginalized state with two classes of citizens….the very rich, and the very poor.

*    California will continue to require massive amounts of money and guess what?  They won’t be able to extract it from the very poor so the Mandarin class will be expected to pick up the slack.

*    NOTE: This Mandarin class is the very same enablers who allowed California to tax and spend the state into fiscal insolvency.

*    HOWEVER, the very rich (in L.A., the Bay Area and San Diego) won’t subsidize the product of their own actions.  Rather, they too will move their prime residence (tax address) to Lake Tahoe, Oregon or Mexico.  They will continue to ‘live, work and play’ in California…they just won’t support the tax base.

Despite his abysmal job performance Governor Davis has the stones to include in his suggestions for the Legislature to restore the governor's power to make budget changes midyear without lawmakers' approval.

The budget process is just that…it is not an event….it IS a process.  The January proposed budget will be followed by a “May Revised Budget”. 

Unless or until the legislature overcomes partisan dogma and makes the hard decisions you can anticipate things will get a lot worse in California and the consequences of Sacramento’s malfeasance will ripple across the country.

© 2003 Geoff Metcalf - All Rights Reserved


Geoff is a veteran media performer. He has had an eclectic professional background covering a wide spectrum of radio, television, magazine, and newspapers.  A former Green Beret and retired Army officer he is in great demand as a speaker. Metcalf has hosted his radio talk show on the ABC/Disney owned and operated KSFO and in worldwide syndication.