For over a century, if you were looking for a better America, California was where you headed. From the Gold Rush days of 1849, to the post-World War II boom of California’s suburban crowd, the state’s beauty, resources, climate, and wildness attracted droves of Americans.
Now though, Americans are fleeing California. The reason for their departure is that California’s government makes living hard in the Golden State. Mismanagement in the state has led to increased risk of wildfire, the erosion of workers’ rights, dystopian streets full of homeless Americans, frequent power outages, and strangulation of small businesses.
Now though, it may be possible there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel. On Tuesday, Californians defeated the largest borrowing proposal in the history of California’s schools. Michael R. Blood reports for the Associated Press:
Everyone knows that living in California comes with a price: Its residents pay some of the nation’s highest taxes on the money they earn, the gas they pump and the clothes they wear. But for the moment, at least, it appears voters have had enough.
The defeat Tuesday of the largest borrowing proposal in the history of California schools — $15 billion for repairs — has opened the question of whether Californian voters put a temporary halt to the growth of government debt because of the unsettled political scene, or because they are on the cusp of a tax revolt akin to one in the 1970s that brought landmark changes to property taxes.
By itself, the crash of the question on the March 3 primary ballot was striking — it’s been a generation since a state school bond failed and there was no telling moment prior to the election indicating voters had soured on it.
But it didn’t stop there. Voters rejected more than half of the 237 local tax and bond measures on that ballot, with several dozen contests still undecided as California authorities wade through hundreds of thousands of uncounted ballots, according to a tally by the California Taxpayers Association.
This could be the beginning of a tax revolt in California, or it could be an angry one-off punishment of politicians and school officials. In either case, Californians are sending a message to their politicians that they are near the brink of their tolerance for spending and taxation. If the politicians in Sacramento can’t understand that, more of the state’s residents will begin looking for a better America, elsewhere.
E.J. Smith - Your Survival Guy
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