(By Publius, ’76 Contributor)
In 2006, my wife and I made the best decision of our lives: We left my home state of California. At the time, we understood that it was probably forever, and that made it all the harder to leave everything I’d ever known: family, friends, and where I had lived my entire life. It was really hard.
At the time, we joked that we were “rats abandoning ship.” To us, liberal governance was sinking the place. Oppressive economic policies, rising costs, high taxes, and the perpetual pandering to liberal special interest groups like unions, illegal immigration, and pop culture nihilism had already made it a place we couldn’t and wouldn’t raise our family. And it clearly was only going to get worse.
A decade later, not a day has gone by where we haven’t felt totally vindicated. I’ve watched from afar and with sadness as the cancer of progressivism has only accelerated California’s decay.
If you’ve never been to California, then you can’t appreciate how it really does live up the hype; or at least it should. There’s more to do there than a lifetime of leisure could ever enjoy. The landscape is breathtaking, and is more diverse than just about anywhere on earth. From giant redwoods to the beaches of Orange County to the tallest mountains in the lower 48, you can surf in the morning and snowboard after lunch. It’s incredible.
It’s home to Disney, Apple, Google, the Lakers, and the entertainment industry. It’s university system is second to none. It produces most of the continent’s food.
And we’re killing it. Or rather, liberalism is killing it.
This week, Gov. Jerry Brown signed the new $15 minimum wage into law, even though he ACTUALLY ADMITS that it does not make economic sense.
“Economically, minimum wages may not make sense. But morally, socially, and politically they make every sense because it binds the community together to make sure parents can take care of their kids.”
Read that again, then think about it.
What the governor of California is saying is that the sentiment, the idea, the warm and fuzzy shallow notion of a minimum wage and the false perception that it “helps” is more important than the real damage it will inflict. See, for liberals, it’s more important to perceive something as true and good, than to actually do something true and good. It’s the idea, and the feeling it creates in people that are important, not its disastrous effects.
And disastrous this will be. Seattle’s infamous $15 minimum wage went into affect several months ago, and already, it’s doing the exact opposite thing it was meant to do: help the poor