Author’s Note: I live in California and it is hard to write and show you the truth of what has happened to a state the I moved to in 1996, but I must.
California, home of the Marines, Hollywood, Napa Valley, Oakland, Stockton, The Delta, countless movies stars, and sports heros. The Sierra Nevada mountain range, Yosemite, Shasta, and Death Valley are all national treasures in California. California is home to four of the top 15 most populous cities in America, Los Angeles, San Diego, San Jose and San Francisco, and one of the largest Metropolises in the world the Bay Area, of which I reside, home to nearly 10 million people.
In California, you have the greatest wine growing region in the country, and largest agricultural valley, and more dams and lakes for recreation than any other state. The weather is downright amazing for most of the state, and transportation infrastructure is second to none in the country. Natural resources are plentiful including, oil, silver, gold, iron, copper, wind, geothermal, solar, lumber, granite, clay, slate, and as mentioned can grow just about every type of fruit and vegetable that you can imagine.
The state offers so much, but yet today has turned into a den of crime, gangs, drugs, poverty, homelessness, and barren wasteland of sand and dirt in many areas of the state. Today this state is known for its boondoggles such as Solyndra, and the High Speed Rail project to nowhere with projected costs of 100 billion dollars. When most American’s talk about the state they say the liberal politics is insane, and California deserves what it gets, since people keep voting crazies like Nancy Pelosi, and Barbara Boxer, Diane Finestein into office. Who can forget Governors such as Jerry “moonbean” Brown, Gray, “Blackout” Davis, Arnold “The Governator” Swartzinager, and now again Jerry Brown, because the first time was not bad enough.
It is impossible to hear any year go by when the media does not report the state is $10, $15, $20, or $30 billion in the red. The solutions coming out of Sacramento are always the same, raise taxes, fees, fines and add more regulations to businesses, while cutting services such as state parks, food stamps, and any assistance programs. To put it bluntly every California state assemblyman and woman, senator, and governor as well as congressman and federal senators all hold responsibility for California’s complete and utter economic, fiscal, and social disaster.
One has to ask yourself a question if you live outside of California, would America be better without this 1000 pound Gorilla weighing her down? Should America start a movement to secede from California?
The city of Stockton California.
Stockton, California appears to be in some deep financial trouble.
According to The Los Angeles Times, Stockton has filed for bankruptcy.
The northern California city, with a population of just under 300,000, is the largest U.S. city to file bankruptcy, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Last week the city filed for Chapter 9 bankruptcy after rising labor costs and expensive civic projects caused them to go into serious debt.
However, Stockton is not alone in this long economic battle. According to Reuters, nearly 90,000 U.S. cities, towns & municipalities are still struggling to recover from the housing market crash that has crippled the nation and effectively sent the U.S. economy into a recession like state.
The city of Oakland California. The following is reported by NBC news Bay Area.
Oakland‘s police chief is making some dire claims about what his force will and will not respond to if layoffs go as planned.
Chief Anthony Batts listed exactly 44 situations that his officers will no longer respond to and they include grand theft, burglary, car wrecks, identity theft and vandalism. He says if you live and Oakland and one of the above happens to you, you need to let police know on-line.
Some 80 officers were to be let go at midnight last night if a last-minute deal was not reached. That’s about ten percent of the work force.
“I came her e to build an organization, not downsize one,” said Batts, who was given the top job in October.
That deadline has been extended to 5 p.m. Tuesday.
Here’s a partial list:
- grand theft
- grand theft:dog
- identity theft
- false information to peace officer
- required to register as sex or arson offender
- dump waste or offensive matter
- discard appliance with lock
- loud music
- possess forged notes
- pass fictitious check
- obtain money by false voucher
- fraudulent use of access cards
- stolen license plate
- embezzlement by an employee (over $ 400)
- attempted extortion
- false personification of other
- injure telephone/ power line
- interfere with power line
- unauthorized cable tv connection
- administer/expose poison to another’s
Negotiations are going on at Oakland City Hall in the mayor’s office.
Batts said the 80 officers slated to be laid off – mostly new officers – are “pretty sad and pretty depressed,” and those feelings are shared by the Police Department as a whole.
The Oakland City Council voted June 25 to eliminate the positions to help close the city’s $32.5 million funding gap. According to the city of Oakland, each of the 776 police officers currently employed at OPD costs around $188,000 per year. Most of the officers who will be affected by the layoffs were on the streets of Oakland when Johannes Mehserle’s involuntary manslaughter conviction caused riots last Thursday.
Finding Jobs in California. well not really. Here is a list of the top 10 worst cities to find employment in.
|Metro Area||Unemployment Rate, Nov. 2011||Y-Y Change|
|1. Merced, Calif.||-1.7|
|2. Fresno, Calif.||-1.7|
|3. Modesto, Calif.||-1.7|
|4. Stockton, Calif.||-2.3|
|5. Visalia-Porterville, Calif.||-1.8|
|6. Atlantic City-Hammonton, N.J.||0.1|
|7. Bakersfield-Delano, Calif.||-2.2|
|8. Hickory-Lenoir-Morganton, N.C.||-0.7|
|9. Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, Calif.||-2.0|
|10. Brownsville-Harlingen, Texas
The Central Valley also known as the bread basket to the world: Here is a video showing you how the water needed to produce crops was turned off to “protect” a two inch fish called the Delta Smelt. Turning the worlds richest land to a dust bowl.
Perhaps America should consider the amazing amount of illegal drugs that are procuded in California. The following Excerpt comes from the American Thinker.
But not to worry, for there is additional information that indomitable human will is alive and well in the Central Valley, as is the spirit of American entrepreneurship. If you think all of those out-of-work folks are just laying around sucking up welfare, think again. They’ve got something new cooking and I do mean cooking. According to DoJ’s Drug Intelligence Center Website, the Central Valley has one method of fighting economic malaise:
The Central Valley HIDTA region is the primary methamphetamine production area, not only in California but also in the United States. In 2009, 50 percent of all methamphetamine laboratories seized in California were located in the Central Valley HIDTA region. (See Table 2.) In addition, 7 of the 13 superlabse seized in California during 2009 were located in the Central Valley. The majority of these laboratories were controlled by Mexican DTOs and located in rural areas–typically on rented property (usually farms) or remote public lands.
HIDTA is a high intensity drug trafficking area. Oh, and for you federal judges and smug guardians of the environment, the narcs also have this little gem for you to masticate:
The environmental damage caused by the disposal of chemicals and chemical waste is substantial in the region. More than half of the state’s remediation costs for contaminated methamphetamine production sites are incurred in the Central Valley. In 2009, cleanup of these laboratories cost the state more than $400,000, which accounted for approximately 53 percent of state expenditures to remediate methamphetamine laboratories and dumpsites.
I could go on and on, about the horrific conditions of the state but let me just touch on one more that as usual every politician in the state touts as the “project to save California”: HIGH SPEED RAIL.
The following is from the website High Speed Boondoggle. I tip my hat to them for the excellent research.
About High-Speed Rail Boondoggle
High-speed rail seemed like a good idea when it was approved by voters back in 2008, just as the financial crisis hit. So what’s changed since then? Everything.
Costs Have Increased from $33 Billion to at least $68 Billion
When voters approved Proposition 1A in November, 2008, authorizing $9.95 billion in bonds for High-Speed Rail, the CHSRA estimated the entire project would cost $33 billion. Federal and private funding were to make up the difference. In December, 2009, the CHRSA revised the cost for the first phase of the project upward to $43 billion. Then, in November, 2011, the CHSRA unveiled a revised business plan that estimated the cost at between $98.5 billion and $117 billion – at least three times the original projection – and pushed out the construction schedule by 13 years, so that the project would be completed in 2033, rather than 2020. The Authority and its supporters praised the revised plan as “realistic” and “conservative.”
However, in April 2012, the plan was revised yet again at the request of Gov. Brown. By cutting the LA-Anaheim segment, and using existing commuter rail lines between San Francisco and San Jose, as well as in southern California, the Authority lowered the estimated cost to $68 billion and said service would begin on some segments by 2029. In both the November 2011 and April 2012 versions of the business plan, the Authority assumes that the federal government and private investors will step forward to pay the multiple billions of dollars in construction costs and claims the system will operate at a profit.
At a time when the state and federal governments are deeply in debt and cutting education, social service and other funding, can taxpayers afford a massive “bait and switch” infrastructure project that is virtually certain to cost more than current estimates?
A History of Mismanagement
The Authority has a history of mismanagement and making misleading statements. Below are descriptions of studies by organizations and the media that have documented issues that, if not substantively addressed, will increase the negative impacts of High-Speed Rail on communities and taxpayers.
Peer Review Group
In January 2012, the Peer Review Group commissioned under Prop 1A to analyze HSR for lawmakers recommended that the Legislature refuse to authorize the state bonds that would pay for a major part of the Central Valley segment. The lack of adequate funding, a definitive business model, appropriate management resources and other problems represent “an immense financial risk on the part of the state of California,” wrote Will Kempton, who is chairman of the group, as well as the head of the Orange County Transportation Authority and a former director of Caltrans.
For more information, click here:
Also in January, State Auditor Elaine Howell said the Authority’s November 2011 revised business plan relied on uncertain funding sources and that project’s “overall financial situation has become increasingly risky.” She also said the Authority inadequately manages its many contractors. As one example, Howell said it violated a state rule prohibiting agencies from splitting contracts to avoid competitive bidding requirements, dividing $3.1 million in information technology services into 13 different contracts with one vendor over 15 months.
For more information, click here:
Legislative Analyst’s Office
In November 2011, the non-partisan Legislative Analyst’s Office published an analysis of the Authority’s November 2011 business plan that stated funding sources were “highly speculative.” It said “Congress has approved no funding for high-speed rail projects for 2012. As a result, it is highly uncertain if funding to complete the high-speed rail system will ever materialize.” In addition, the analysis said that the 120-mile segment the Authority wants to begin building in 2012 is not a “usable segment” and therefore does not meet the legal requirements of Prop1A.
For more information, click here:
Misleading Estimates on Jobs
The Authority has misled the public and elected officials about the number of jobs that would be created by the project. After an investigation by the San Jose Mercury News was published in December 2011, that Authority was forced to concede the number of jobs was not more than a million, as previously claimed, but in the tens of thousands. It acknowledged its definition of jobs has been “imprecise and potentially confusing.”
To read two articles about the investigation, click here:
Flawed ridership projections
Ridership is the key to profitability, and projections used prior to the revised business plan were widely criticized by watchdog and non-partisan groups. For example, a UC Berkeley Institute of Transportation Studies report says the data used by the CHSRA was so “unreliable” that it is impossible to predict whether the project will be successful or lead to “severe revenue shortfalls.”
The revised business plan uses a number of scenarios, but is still being widely criticized by experts. To read an article on revised ridership figures, please click here:
The watchdog group Californians Advocating Responsible Rail Design found the business plan assumed ridership demand would increase due to gasoline costing $40 a gallon. To read the analysis, click here:
As a nation everyone who is willing to look at the truth knows something very bad is about to happen to this country. It is time for some serious conversations about some game changing options to fixing the problems of our nation. I offer up to all this blog as an idea generator. Perhaps it is time for America to Secede from California.
Filed under: East Bay California, Economic Collapse, Featured, National Blog · Tags: 2012, bankruptcy, boondoggles, california, diane finestein, high speed rail, high speed rail project, jerry brown, nancy pelosi, napa valley, san francisco, secede, solyndra, unemployment, yosemite