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Maher writes: "It wasn't that long ago that pundits were calling California a failed state and saying it was ungovernable. But in 2010, when other states were busy electing whatever Tea Partier claimed to hate government the most, we elected a guy who actually liked it, Jerry Brown."

Comedian Bill Maher explains why California is thriving. (photo: HBO)
Comedian Bill Maher explains why California is thriving. (photo: HBO)


California: Tea Party Free Zone

By Bill Maher, Reader Supported News

28 September 13

 

ew Rule: Conservatives who love to brag about American exceptionalism must come here to California, and see it in person. And then they should be afraid -- very afraid. Because while the rest of the country is beset by stories of right-wing takeovers in places like North Carolina, Texas and Wisconsin, California is going in the opposite direction and creating the kind of modern, liberal nation the country as a whole can only dream about. And not only can't the rest of the country stop us -- we're going to drag you along with us.

It wasn't that long ago that pundits were calling California a failed state and saying it was ungovernable. But in 2010, when other states were busy electing whatever Tea Partier claimed to hate government the most, we elected a guy who actually liked it, Jerry Brown.

Since then, everything Republicans say can't or won't work -- gun control, immigration reform, high-speed rail -- California is making work. And everything conservatives claim will unravel the fabric of our society -- universal healthcare, higher taxes on the rich, gay marriage, medical marijuana -- has only made California stronger. And all we had to do to accomplish that was vote out every single Republican. Without a Republican governor and without a legislature being cock-blocked by Republicans, a $27 billion deficit was turned into a surplus, continuing the proud American tradition of Republicans blowing a huge hole in the budget and then Democrats coming in and cleaning it up.

How was Governor Moonbeam able to do this? It's amazing, really.

We did something economists call cutting spending AND raising taxes. I know, it sounds like some crazy science fiction story, but you see, here in California, we're not just gluten-free and soy-free and peanut-free, we're Tea Party free! Virginia could do it, too, but they're too busy forcing ultrasounds on women who want abortions. Texas could, but they don't because they're too busy putting Jesus in the science textbooks. Meanwhile their state is so broke they want to replace paved roads with gravel. I thought we had this road-paving thing licked in the 1930s, but not in Texas. But hey, in Dallas you can carry a rifle into a Chuck E. Cheese, cause that's freedom. Which is great, but it wasn't so great when that unregulated fertilizer plant in Waco blew up. In California, when things blow up, it's because we're making a Jason Statham movie.

California isn't perfect, but it is in our nature from being on the new coast to be up for trying new things -- and maybe that's why the right wingers are always hoping we fail. On the campaign trail last year, Mitt Romney warned that if we didn't follow his conservative path, "America is going to become like Greece, or... Spain, or Italy, or... California." And that was a big laugh line with Mormons, because Greece, Spain and Italy have some art and poetry and theatre, but nothing like Salt Lake City. Yes, Mitt sure hates California, which is why he moved to San Diego. To the house with the car elevator.

What conservatives fear about California being a petri dish for the liberal agenda is well-founded. For example, as Obamacare gets implemented here much more successfully than predicted, the movement to just go all the way to a single payer system is gathering steam. It actually passed the legislature twice, but was vetoed by Schwarzenegger, who argued it didn't go far enough to cover the children of that natural, beautiful love between a man and a cleaning lady.

In lots of areas, California seems to have decided not to wait around for the knuckle-draggers and the selfish libertarian states to get on board. They can mock "European style democracies" all they want, we are building one here, and people like it -- the same way when Americans come back from a vacation in Europe they all say the same thing: "Wow, you can see titties on the beach!" But they also remark on the clean air, the modern, first world infrastructure, the functioning social safety net, and bread that doesn't taste like powdered glue. And they wonder, "Why can't we get that here?" Unless they're Republicans, in which case they wonder, "How can people live like that?"

Well, swallow hard, guys, because California is eventually going to make all Americans live like that. Why? Because we're huge. The 12th largest economy in the world, the fifth largest agricultural exporter in the world, and of course number one in laser vaginal rejuvenation. There's 40 million of us -- so, for example, when California set a high mileage standard for any car sold in this state, Detroit had to make more fuel-efficient cars; we're just too big a slice of the market, and it would be too expensive to make one car for us, and another for shit-kickers who want something that runs on coal.

It's so ironic -- the two things conservatives love the most, the free market and states rights -- are the two things that are going to bend this country into California's image as a socialist fagtopia. Maybe our constipated Congress can't pass gun control laws, but we just did. Lots of 'em. Because we don't give a shit about the NRA. Out here that stands for "Nuts, Racists, and Assholes." So while the rest of America is debating whether it's a good idea to allow guns in bars or a great idea to allow guns in bars, California is about to ban lead bullets. Which is a no-brainer, because bullets don't need lead, and lead kills birds and gets into the food supply of people who hunt their own food. Which explains why Ted Nugent is such a raving lunatic.

While other state governments are working with Jesus to make abortion more miserable -- because otherwise women would use it for weight loss -- California is making it easier. We actually have a guy dancing on the street corner dressed as the Statue of Liberty spinning a big arrow that says, "Abortions!" And a new law will even let nurse practitioners perform abortions. And dog groomers can aid assisted suicides by Skype.

California was the first state to legalize medical marijuana, our minimum wage is almost three dollars higher than the national rate, and in 10 years a third of our electricity will come from renewable energy and 15 percent of our cars will be electric.

And while Republicans in the rest of the country are threatening to deport every immigrant not named Ted Cruz, California just OK'd driver's licenses for undocumented aliens. That's right, we're letting them drive cars -- just like white people! You Red Staters may ask, "How come they're lettin' Meskins drive?" Well, it's because they have to get to their jobs. You see, here in California we're embracing the modern world -- we can't be worrying about all the nonsense that keeps Fox News viewers up at night when they should be in bed adjusting their sleep apnea mask. Our state motto is, "We're Too Busy for Your Bullshit."

The bottom line is that we are moving the country's largest economy into a place where we can all be health-insured, clean air-breathin', gay-married, immigrant-friendly citizens who don't get shot all the time. And my message to the rest of America is: do not resist. Kneel before Zod! California has been setting the trends in America for decades, from Silicon Valley to silicone tits, and it's not going to stop now. We say jump -- you say, "Please sell me new exercise clothes for jumping." We said put cilantro in food, and dammit, you did, you put cilantro in food, even though neither one of us knows what it is. Almond milk? We just had some extra almonds and thought we'd fuck with you. The enormous earlobe hole? You're welcome. We also invented the genius bar, where the kid with the enormous earlobe hole takes your MacBook in the back and fills it with animal pornography.


 

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+159 # ER444 2013-09-28 13:17
Go California. Just please complete the work of getting the Nuclear power plants in Diablo Canyon and San Onofre off line. When I see the pictures of these nuclear dinosaurs on the Pacific coast I can't help thinking of Fukushima. You need to hurry!!!
 
 
+109 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2013-09-28 13:32
How can you not love this guy, Bill Maher? And, he is one of the few guys who have the guts to hit the road and walk his talk. Sure, he makes $ while giving his "Newest Testament" factual performance, yet the money is better spent by the citizens than paying the military/indust rial complex to start another war.
 
 
+226 # carp 2013-09-28 13:45
I remember around 5 years or so ago Schwarzenegger, Jon Huntsman, my governor and 4 other western governors did a task force and they reported that it would be cheaper, more efficient and altogether workable if they just insured everybody. What with the medical bankruptcies, bailing out the hospitals that treat uninsured folks, bailing out medical systems that get shortchanged by the insurance industry and just general better health for their citizens it would would work. Personally I vote for medicare for all. let us be done with the medical system as it stands now.
 
 
+134 # chomper2 2013-09-28 15:25
Yes, and those insurance companies currently provide no service to the public other than to assure that our medical care comes at the highest cost of any in the world. In addition, they are a major factor in the decline of quality of medical care here; how do you feel about actuarial accountants having more say about your medical decisions than does your doctor?
 
 
+108 # WestWinds 2013-09-28 16:12
I agree. Let's have Medicare for All/Single Payer. The Insurance Industry is just another face of the banksters and rip-off is their game. We also need to get rid of privatized corporate medicine; as a licensed health care professional, I can tell you truly, it sux.
 
 
+45 # Buddha 2013-09-28 20:36
The irony is Gov Impregnator vetoed single-payer TWICE...but now what we have a Dem governor and a Dem supermajority, all of a sudden nobody in Sacramento has the stones to get single-payer done!! I am really steamed about this, I am hoping we get some grass-roots organization to force this to happen and soon, we need to vote our and replace every politician up there dragging their feet on single-payer, including Gov Brown.
 
 
+87 # chemtex2611 2013-09-28 14:29
Those who do not believe in good government, don't bother to govern well.

One cheery thought is that California is 10% of the US population.
 
 
+26 # ffordpa 2013-09-29 10:57
Quoting chemtex2611:
Those who do not believe in good government, don't bother to govern well.

One cheery thought is that California is 10% of the US population.


In the immortal words of P. J. O'Rourke:

"The Republicans are the party that says government doesn't work and then they get elected and prove it."



Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/p/pjorour107305.html#AgAYttI8WgEcHOjo.99
 
 
+13 # bingers 2013-09-29 14:34
Which s kind of funny, since PJ is a wingnut. But not always so out there. And he may be the only truly funny right winger, specifically because he is not afraid to beat up on the occasional Republican douchbaggery.
 
 
-69 # lib-buster 2013-09-29 18:14
We certainly don't have good government now with the Dumbocrats in charge. Look at the damage O'blamer and his far left cronies have done to this country. Everything is far worse and he's spent us in to near bankruptcy with his failed stimulus (and other policies) and now Bummer-care which will certainly be the last straw! One can only hope the Dems get sent to the dumpster in the 2014 election. With O'blunder, Reid, Pelosi et al in charge that looks very likely!
 
 
+4 # Pikewich 2013-10-01 15:51
Oblamer-care in its enacted form is not nearly what we would have had if the repugs had not made sure 2 things were removed:
1. Cost controls. the insurance industry masquerading as health care providers can charge whatever they can get away with.
2. the public option. it would have allowed us to just go on Medicare for all, AKA, single payer.

So of course oblamer-care is expensive! What do you expect when you mandate everyone to buy insurance that has no cost controls?

But some say it is a step toward singlepayer. Hopefully california one-care will pass one of these days.
 
 
0 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2013-10-01 23:12
Get a job with Fox News. They are always looking for dummies.
 
 
+110 # Agricanto 2013-09-28 15:19
Before we pat ourselves on the back too much (California resident here since 1973) let's note that the Legislature just passed SB4 which gives the natural gas industry some light regulations so they can frack the state with poisoned water (we don't have much water) and possible earthquakes (Ohio's earthquakes were caused by fracking). So what I say to the Texas based energy companies that are fracking our state, get the frack out of California!
 
 
+39 # ChickenBoo 2013-09-28 18:20
Quoting Agricanto:
Before we pat ourselves on the back too much (California resident here since 1973) let's note that the Legislature just passed SB4 which gives the natural gas industry some light regulations so they can frack the state with poisoned water (we don't have much water) and possible earthquakes (Ohio's earthquakes were caused by fracking). So what I say to the Texas based energy companies that are fracking our state, get the frack out of California!

Oh no! That bill passed? How stupid can it possibly be to ENCOURAGE earthquakes in California! I thought that had been stopped....
 
 
+22 # Byronator 2013-09-29 13:20
Governor Brown was on the wrong side of the fracking issue, as is Obama (sending Michael Froman to Europe to reduce barriers to importing oil derived from fracking in America). Fracking is the fossil fuel industry's final, perhaps fatal for everyone, push to sustain an oil and gas based global economy. Politicians are tricked or intimidated into falling in line behind this BS. When economics are divorced from ecology, both will fail.
 
 
-51 # lib-buster 2013-09-29 18:09
My goodness more lies and ignorance from the loony left. Someone has been listening to that triple bacon cheeseburger Micheal Moore. He's not very bright either. Or maybe its the Haters on BSNDC? They rarely know what they are talking about. Hence no one watches except the crazies out on the fringe. Your mind could use some fracking Agricanto!
 
 
+8 # Rita Walpole Ague 2013-09-30 03:12
Here come the fossil 'foolers', once again, about to slaughter us and Mother Earth, and get endless $$$$$ filling their bottomless coffers, via multi-tasking.. . fracking us (a.k.a. fucking us), while ruining our drinkable water, and, in the not distant future making still more immense fortunes out of sale of expensive plus drinking water.

No big surprise, the Kochsuckers are earnestly buying up water rights in another coastal state, Florida. Cuidado, California.
 
 
+18 # Polar Bear 2013-09-28 15:43
So uplifting..than ks there is a Green Tea Party ..I think in North Carolina..bec people like each home to be their own independent producer of electricity
 
 
+37 # JSRaleigh 2013-09-28 16:18
Quoting Polar Bear:
So uplifting..thanks there is a Green Tea Party ..I think in North Carolina..bec people like each home to be their own independent producer of electricity


A significant portion of the tea-baggers in North Carolina are also Carpet Baggers.

We were doing fairly well, maybe not finding our way to equality very quickly, but we were finding our way ...

before Citizens United allowed Art Pope to hire all those out-of-state fascists to run for public office.
 
 
+30 # WestWinds 2013-09-28 16:00
Tea Party = T Party = Trash Party:

California is a Trash Free Zone!
 
 
-100 # stanny1 2013-09-28 17:15
I guess you forgot that high taxes and regulations are driving out small business as is high personal income tax.Public employee unions own the govenor and legislature so that prision workers retire at way over 100k a year.The illegals,the pensions,high utility costs - it's not sustainable over the long term. Just wait for the next crash...
 
 
+37 # ChickenBoo 2013-09-28 18:18
Quoting stanny1:
I guess you forgot that high taxes and regulations are driving out small business as is high personal income tax.Public employee unions own the govenor and legislature so that prision workers retire at way over 100k a year.The illegals,the pensions,high utility costs - it's not sustainable over the long term. Just wait for the next crash...


Aw,c'mon, Stanny! Your green eyes are showing!
 
 
+49 # KrazyFromPolitics 2013-09-28 18:26
Quoting stanny1:
I guess you forgot that high taxes and regulations are driving out small business as is high personal income tax.Public employee unions own the govenor and legislature so that prision workers retire at way over 100k a year.The illegals,the pensions,high utility costs - it's not sustainable over the long term. Just wait for the next crash...

Horse crap.
 
 
+57 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2013-09-28 19:18
To: stanny1 What you say is not supported by the facts, just your sewer pipe information. The "Great Depression" started in '28 when the upper 1 % took in the vast earnings of the country. The "rest" did not have the purchasing power to keep the economy going. Redistribution of wealth, taking from the poor and what there was of a middle class caused the Big Bust. Same then as what is happening now. How did we get out of that depression? Check the economics-by reducing government spending and raising taxes on the upper 1 %. that is a fact not an opinion, OK?
 
 
+6 # bingers 2013-09-29 14:36
You obviously didn't read the original which proves your points are only on your head, and not in your post.
 
 
+64 # Green Genie 2013-09-28 17:26
When I came here as a child, I remember my parents saying how wonderful California was with its "free"ways, all public beaches and wonderful education system, especially the university plus with lower taxes than the East Coast and Midwest. Thanks to Reagan and Prop 13, some of that has changed but I will fight to the death to keep our beaches free and open to the public and our freeways free.
 
 
-4 # NOMINAE 2013-09-28 21:55
Quoting Green Genie:
.... how wonderful California was with its "free"ways, all public beaches and wonderful education system, especially the university plus with lower taxes than the East Coast and Midwest. Thanks to Reagan and Prop 13, some of that has changed but I will fight to the death to keep our beaches free and open to the public and our freeways free.


Yeah, but you would have to go to Oregon to find truly public beaches from State Line to State Line. (The Hurst Castle in San Simeon, CA alone has 70 miles of private beach).

You would also have to go to Oregon to find beaches free of motorized vehicles. Nothing like basking on the beaches of California, only to have exhaust from a V-8 4X4 blown directly into your face, and tire tracks left five feet from your reclining head.

California's erstwhile free education system is also a thing of the past.

I have never lived on the East Coast, but the idea of CA taxes being lower than the Midwest is just plain hilarious.

Even by West Coast Standards, CA is by *far* the most expensive State in which to live, or to run a business. That's why Rick Perry is trying to lure CA businesses to relocate in Texas.

Bill Maher mentions CA's high minimum wage, without referring to the fact that it is a function of CA's ridiculously high cost of living.

Like anything else in the world of actual reality, CA has both it's plusses and it's minuses.
 
 
+2 # bobmiller101 2013-10-01 18:36
Sorry NOMINAE, I lived near San Simeon and I'd sure like to know where those 70 miles of private beach are located. I have walked just about every inch of that area and have NEVER seen private beach. I now live in Orange county, go to the beach every week and have NO IDEA whaat you are talking about "4x4's." In fact, we have the most cosatal access of any place I've been.
 
 
-11 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2013-09-29 07:17
Hmm?
 
 
+26 # Annietime13 2013-09-28 17:41
Me ,Gawd, Mista Mayer,

This reads like it should be the National Anthem!!!!!!!

Your California Utopian WOW !
Could so easily be put to music
It is downright lyrical !!!!!!

And there is Truth in every sentence.

Mama is Proud!!!

( Hey! Guess it wouldn't hurt to have a little Proud back in our lives!)
 
 
+62 # ishmael 2013-09-28 17:55
Mr Maher's piece should be required reading for every teabagger who knows how to read.
 
 
+19 # T4D 2013-09-28 18:24
Do they, really?
 
 
+20 # ChickenBoo 2013-09-28 18:26
Quoting ishmael:
Mr Maher's piece should be required reading for every teabagger who knows how to read.

OMG! Someone said something GOOD about California?! California might be everybody's whipping boy, but you never hear sweeping statements like..."Califor nia hates Orgonions, or California hates Texans".....alt hough the opposite is certianlly true.....
 
 
+13 # reiverpacific 2013-09-28 19:58
Quoting ChickenBoo:
Quoting ishmael:
Mr Maher's piece should be required reading for every teabagger who knows how to read.

OMG! Someone said something GOOD about California?! California might be everybody's whipping boy, but you never hear sweeping statements like..."California hates Orgonions, or California hates Texans".....although the opposite is certianlly true.....

Although in the late 70's when I first came here, there was a popular term here "Don't Californicate Oregon", now obsolete.
 
 
+3 # NOMINAE 2013-09-28 22:15
Quoting reiverpacific:
....Although in the late 70's when I first came here, there was a popular term here "Don't Californicate Oregon", now obsolete.


Yup, and that quote arose from the political / social climate in Oregon at the time, reflected by then Governor Tom McCall, (1967 to 1975) who was also reputed to have said of CA Tourists - (to paraphrase) Welcome to Oregon. Please spend freely - and then go home !

The Seventies was a time of heavy influx into Oregon of California residents moving northward to escape the "paradise" of The Golden State.

The Seventies was also one of the best decades to be an Oregonian. By now, *SO* many other people have "discovered" the State, that it's become a bit crowded by '70s Standards, as has most of the U.S. in general.
 
 
+24 # Malcolm 2013-09-28 19:27
Quoting ishmael:
Mr Maher's piece should be required reading for every teabagger who knows how to read.


All three of them.
 
 
-34 # lib-buster 2013-09-29 16:09
Why would anyone waste their time listening to the ignorant, race baiting, vile little comedian. Only far left wack jobs would consider anything the lying little man has to say. All you far left loons should be watching FNC to get the truth!
 
 
+17 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2013-09-29 20:42
TO:lib-buster
Careful. Your hatred may consume you. Then, what is left? Earl Nightengale:"we become what we think about." What does lib-buster think about? Hatred? Surely not facts which could help him become calm, cheerful, rational.
 
 
-13 # lib-buster 2013-09-30 09:40
lol...Only the little comedian man that you listen too has hatred. Did you not comprehend his B.S. piece? Are you a sidewalk pooper as well?
 
 
+1 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2013-09-30 14:32
You have a foul mouth. Go back to your cardboard box in L.A.
 
 
+5 # Skippydelic 2013-09-30 03:49
"Every Teabagger who knows how to read"?

ARE there any like that???
 
 
-68 # lib-buster 2013-09-28 19:27
Wow...the little race baiting man is back at it again. California's problems are solved according to the vulgar little man who knows nothing. It's so easy to make things up and get naive libs to believe it. I mean...Obama does it all the time! And if that fails just play the race card and reference something about "white people" to make it all seem so right. The clueless, foul mouth little man lies. The public employee unions and Illegal Alien activists / lobbyists own this once great state and they've taken it right down the drain in every way. Pick any issue / economic indicator you want e.g. highest taxes & the biggest debt, millions of illegals unsustainable pension obligations, chronic deficits in every area of government just to name a few. But the list is long! None of these issues have been solved. They've only gotten far worse. What is this little guy talking about? This state has been run by the Dems for decades now. They are responsible for it's demise just like they are in Detroit. How can he not know this? Why does he lie so much? How can anyone with a brain believe what he says? Productive people and businesses are leaving the state in droves! Maybe the spiteful little man is thinking he's talking to the block heads that show up to watch his stupid show where you can watch a bunch of far left loons also tell lies. What else could it be??????
 
 
+15 # reiverpacific 2013-09-28 21:36
[quote name="lib-buste r"]Wow...the little race baiting man is back at it again. California's problems are solved according to the vulgar little man who knows nothing. It's so easy to make things up and get naive libs to believe it. I mean...Obama does it all the time! And if that fails just play the race card and reference something about "white people" to make it all seem so right. The clueless, foul mouth little man lies. The public employee unions and Illegal Alien activists / lobbyists own this once great state and they've taken it right down the drain in every way. Pick any issue / economic indicator you want e.g. highest taxes & the biggest debt, millions of illegals unsustainable pension obligations, chronic deficits in every area of government just to name a few. But the list is long! None of these issues have been solved. They've only gotten far worse. What is this little guy talking about? This state has been run by the Dems for decades now. They are responsible for it's demise just like they are in Detroit. How can he not know this? Why does he lie so much? How can anyone with a brain believe what he says? Productive people and businesses are leaving the state in droves! Maybe the spiteful little man is thinking he's talking to the block heads that show up to watch his stupid show where you can watch a bunch of far left loons also tell lies. What else could it be??????
Tiny far-right loons who wouldn't know fact if it was served up to them in a silver chalice.
 
 
+14 # phrixus 2013-09-29 05:15
Troll.
 
 
+12 # tm7devils 2013-09-29 18:50
There was a study that found out that the average IQ of a Faux News fan was 80.
You just proved the study came to the correct conclusion.
(P.S. Does "Lib" stand for "Liberty"?)
 
 
+25 # reiverpacific 2013-09-28 19:56
And Oregon and Washington aren't far behind -and in a few cases, ahea".
I've always felt, especially after a spell in the south, medievalist and going backwards all the time, that the west coast and especially the Pacific Northwest (or as some of us call it "Cascadia"), is the only part of the US I could live in before returning to Europe and I've been here longer than anyplace else since I left college, not to mention both of my marriages were and are to Oregon ladies -but not at the same time -I ain't no retro-Mormon!
I didn't care much for new England or the Midwest either for different reasons -no disrespect to residents of these areas -I've always managed to find something to enjoy, get involved in, be enriched by and learn from everywhere I've lived or worked in for a while all over the US and the world.
Hawaii is pretty damn nice too; almost more like a part of S.E. Asia than the mainland US.
Now if we can just get the world's best and brightest together and do something significant to take care of the roiling ticking and counting menace that is Fukushima to the far west (but not far enough) and Hanford to the east, I'd feel a helluva lot safer.
 
 
+26 # Buddha 2013-09-28 20:32
As a Californian I have to say that it is nice finally getting the GOP roadblocks cleared, it allowed rational budgeting and a return to some basic progressive taxation...and when you have a state that has the 12th largest GDP in the world, economic problems can be fixed pretty quick when you implement a more rational non-trickle-dow n approach. But we still have some issues, for example the sudden reticence of the Legislature, and Gov Brown, to finally get a state-run single-payer system like Vermont is doing. We had a single-payer bill pass both houses, twice, only to be vetoed by Gov. Impregnator, but now nobody up there has the stones to get it done when we have a Dem Gov and a Dem Supermajority? WTF? I think the money of the HMO's and Kaiser Permanente has gotten to them. :-( And also, CA still hasn't fully legalized pot like OR and CO, and it took the SCOTUS refusing to overturn the lower district court's invalidation of Prop 8 which blocked marriage equality, we didn't do it democratically. And we couldn't even pass a bill to get GMO labeling of food. We are on the right path, but certainly have a ways to go even here in CA...
 
 
+20 # soularddave 2013-09-28 21:55
Always something to work on, but there's progress that all can observe - if they want to.

As far as the claim that "small businesses are leaving": There will always be "readjustment" but California has 'critical mass' and can weather the small storms. Why? Because they learn and work somewhat 'together'. The people seem to see what's happening and work to improve things sensibly. Same thing goes for Washington & Oregon. Any rivalry is friendly, as they're all progressing together.
 
 
+28 # m... 2013-09-28 21:36
Divide and Conquer.
Amputate and Separate.

We the People have been cut out of 'Our' Government of, by and for the people like 'Marks' in a ConJob who were conned into voting, deregulating AND corporate contracting themselves right out of power.

30 years ago, Ronald Reagan pointed at OUR 'New Deal Government' and declared, 'Government is the Problem'

And so began the GREAT FLIM FLAM.

'OUR' Government of Ourselves was yanked right out of US like a tumor, then stood against a wall, pointed at and declared to be a terrible, evil, monstrous thing that WE the People needed to hate, despised, tear down, destroy and contract out to Corporate Saviors to be sucked dry and withered like a prune in the name of 'Freedom'
So, We threw it all away on a foisted 'trickle down hope' that we would somehow become more 'free and prosperous' by giving the super wealthy our money, power AND Government.
People voted for it and then waited for it to rain money from Wall Street.

Instead

We the People were transformed into Corporate Cash Cows living under a gigantic, expensive system we still call Government and which, is governed by an illusory Two Party System that exists in a vacuum of self perpetuation while, ironically, using the fear of a mythical thing called 'Big Government' to keep their grip on power.

Wah Lah!

An actual 'Big Government' was created by those selling the idea that such is to be destroyed.

Welcome to Crazyland
 
 
-23 # Rick Levy 2013-09-28 23:47
I was doing fine with this post until I came to the part about illegals. If the reason for allowing them to have legal documents like drivers licenses so they can get to work, that's proof for the argument that these gate crashers are stealing jobs from citizens and legal aliens.

And don't give the response that illegals work at jobs that no one else would have, such as stoop labor picking crops. Those workers barely make enough to subsist on, (which is a social ill in itself, but that's another topic). Illegals who have their own cars must be employed in positions that pay enough for citizens and legal permanent residents to fill instead.
 
 
+10 # Buddha 2013-09-29 10:58
You are wrong, for a few reasons. First is the assuming that these undocumented workers are driving nice vehicles. Perhaps you aren't aware that you can actually purchase a car for very little money, if you don't care how old and beat up it is, and if you have the ability to work on it yourself to keep maintenance costs down (which they have)...the kind of vehicle that is being used by those who are mowing our lawns is some ancient 1970's pickup truck that you can buy on Craig's List for a hundred bucks and a roll of duct tape. Also, undocumented workers work very hard, pretty much all in their family who can are working to pull in income, and that rattle-trap car is a FAMILY purchase, not because padre has a middle-class income!!! And due to the spread-out nature of California and our endemic lack of good public transportation infrastructure, having your own means of transportation is vital to getting to your place of employment, and that is the same whether you are undocumented working in some field picking lettuce or washing dishes, or are a native with a nice job you need to commute to. Just stop with the meme that they are taking jobs from legal residents, it is a con-job put forward by those who hate on the bottom 47% during their $50/plate fundraisers and who laugh that they have native plebs blaming browner plebs for their impoverishment.
 
 
-2 # Rick Levy 2013-09-29 20:14
Not a word about LEGAL immigrants who also work very hard with pretty much all their family working to pull in income but who are less likely to pull their kids out of school for that purpose. And unlike their gate crashing and line cutting counterparts, legal aliens play by the rules by waiting years for a visa to enter the U.S. then wait more years to become naturalized.

Meanwhile, illegals are cutting in line in front of them, laughing all the while and pulling wages down for everybody.


Don't tell me about transportation difficulties in California, I may have lived there for more years than you've been alive and experienced that problem first hand. In fact California has a reputation for this problem, so illegals also know this before leaving Mexico.What did they expect would happen when they got there?

The bottom line is that one reason that people immigrate to the U.S.is that they want a better life for themselves and their families. That doesn't excuse breaking the law to do it.
 
 
+40 # Vegan_Girl 2013-09-29 05:17
Go California go! You know Canada's healthcare system started at one region only (after very embittered fights) in Saskatchewan and then spread all over the country!.... Here is to hope that history repeat itself.

Here is to hope for a future without modern Republicans. We have enough corporate Democrats to deal with. Here is to hoping the American public send the GOP to its well deserved historical place of irrelevance.
 
 
+11 # Nick Reynolds 2013-09-29 09:49
California's still the place to be. But it's a mixed bag, and anybody who thinks its economic problems are over is deluded. Maybe where Mr. Maher lives, things are fine, and his money probably gives him a rosier view of reality than if he were struggling to make ends meet, which many young Californians are.
 
 
+1 # scotchleaf 2013-10-01 22:04
but, generally a much smaller % than in Red states.
 
 
+14 # Inlike 2013-09-29 10:12
2016 President: Bernie Sanders
VP: Bill Maher
Sect of State: Dennis Kuchnich
... or should Bill be Pres?
 
 
-7 # Fredsky 2013-09-29 14:48
**Comedian** Bill Maher explains why California is thriving.

That's all you need to know. Yes, I had a good laugh.
 
 
+5 # scotchleaf 2013-10-01 22:03
Texas, the GOP dream state (2nd only to Mississippi):

Teenage Birth Rate – 7th
Women with Health Insurance – 50th Prenatal Care in First Trimester – 50th
Percent of Women Living in Poverty – 6th

Income Inequality 5th

C02 Emissions – 1st
Volatile Organic Compounds Released – 1st
Toxic Chemicals Released into Water – 1st
Carcinogens Released into Air – 1st
Hazardous Waste Generated – 1st
Carcinogens Released into Water – 7th

State Aid Per Pupil in Average Daily Attendance – 47th
Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) Scores – 45th
% of Population 25 and Older with High School Diploma – 50th
High School Graduation Rate – 43rd

Percent of Uninsured Children – 1st
Percent of Children Living in Poverty – 4th
Percent of Population Uninsured – 1st
Percent of Non-Elderly Uninsured – 1st
Percent of Low Income Population Covered by Medicaid – 49th
Percent of Population with Employer-Based Health Insurance – 48th
Per Capita State Spending on Mental Health – 50th
Per Capita State Spending on Medicaid – 49th

Health Care Expenditures per Capita – 44th
Physicians per Capita – 42nd
Registered Nurses per Capita – 44th
Average Monthly Women, Infant, and Children (WIC) Benefits per Person – 47th

Mortgage Debt as Percent of Home Value – 47th
Median Net Worth of Households – 47th
Average Credit Score – 49th
Retirement Plan Participation – 47
 
 
0 # firefly 2013-10-02 13:49
Hey Admin! Thanks for cleaning up this post!
 

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