California Economy go Boom

See Joel Kotkin’s wonderful analysis of what is needed to make California’s economy go boom. Koptkin contends that reviving jobs in California the top priority. In contrast of concentrating on dead-ends like high-speed rail, and “green jobs” based on “jaw-droopingly famous” assumptions (Mother Jones), California can jump start its economy by focusing on creating jobs in real industries instead of delusions. His critique of the coastal limousine liberals whose progressive agenda derails true minority representation is sadly dead on.


Instead of delusion, California needs policies that can boost economic growth in precisely those areas – construction, agriculture, manufacturing and energy – with the best prospects for creating good, high-paying jobs for both blue- and white-collar Californians. Yet, right now the Legislature and, even more so, the empowered state apparat, seem determined to do everything they can to strangle an incipient recovery in these industries…

Sparking the revival of these basic industries and higher-wage employment would enhance California’s budget situation over time far more than increasing taxes on the remaining residue of entrepreneurs and professionals. Energy work, in particular, pays high wages, often more than for many tech jobs, and both manufacturing and construction generally provide higher incomes than the low-wage service work that has become the only option for millions of Californians.

This back-to-basics approach could restore California’s aspirational promise, and not only for a favored few in a handful of favored places, but for the majority of our people, from the mountains to the sea.

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  1. Wendy Lack says

    There’s another HSR project flying under the radar: Vegas to Victorville, CA. As the author of this piece says, proponents are “somewhat cocky” that federal funds are being wasted on it.

    Read more here:

  2. Wendy Lack says

    Here’s an excerpt from a recent U-T San Diego editorial page:

    “Here’s a quick quiz: What two state agencies have a long history of providing misleading and deceptive accounts of their tangled, troubled finances to the public and the Legislature? A history of depicting legitimate criticism as being ideologically driven and mendacious? A history of resisting reform and fighting to maintain a wrongheaded status quo? A history of refusing to acknowledge past fiascoes?

    “If you said the California Public Employees’ Retirement System and the California High-Speed Rail Authority, pat yourself on the back. Given their poor records, if these agencies were looking for executive talent, one would assume they’d bring in an outsider with a strong history of oversight and independence – someone willing to stand up to the bureaucratic forces of inertia.

    “But then that’s what the agencies would do if they were honest about their records. Instead, inexplicably, both the pension giant and bullet-train shepherd think they’re doing a great job. And so it was no surprise to learn this week that the rail authority has hired CALPERS’ acting chief financial officer, Russell Fong, as its CFO. How tidy.

    “Expect the same management culture to continue at both agencies. Arrogance and denial: It’s the CalPERS/CHSRA way.”

    Read more here:

  3. Wendy Lack says

    Looks like Fresno — CA’s 5th largest city — is on the verge of bankruptcy.

    From city employees’ reaction, you’d think the city’s exploration of privatizing city services were the Black Death.

    See Dan Walter’s 2/11/13 Sac Bee column at:

  4. Wendy Lack says

    On a related topic closer to home, do we yet know precisely how CCCERA is implementing the new state pension reforms (PEPRA, aka AB 340 and AB 197)? The Guv sold Prop 30 tax increases, in part, based upon these reforms.

    So, where’s the beef?

    Has the CCCERA Board of Trustees taken action regarding the items discussed at its PEPRA educational seminar on October 10, 2012?

    There are numerous “special pay” categories used by CCCERA employers — ~336 special pay categories used by the county alone that total ~$30M in annual compensation, much of which is retirement-reportable (i.e., used for “pension spiking” purposes).

    And, on a smaller scale, the 20 special pay codes used by ConFire totalled $14.5 million in tax year 2011 — about $4 million of which was used to “spike” retirement compensation.

    So . . . does anyone know the status of PEPRA implementation by CCCERA? What are CCCERA employers doing regarding payroll reporting?

    Perhaps I missed the discussion? I don’t see this issue on next week’s Board agenda — though they are having a closed session re the employee union lawsuits re PEPRA:

  5. Kris Hunt says

    Unfortunately we have a legislature that likes to impose taxes and anti-business work rules that other states do not. We also have a governor who believes that we have a balanced budget (we do not) and that people only leave the state when they get a divorce (still trying to figure THAT one out.)

    They are currently attacking the Governor of Texas for trying to attract our businesses to his state instead of doing what needs to be done to keep those businesses here. Not a good sign for a California comeback.