Some depressing thoughts from long-time Democrat (who will be voting for Mickey Kaus in June) Victor Davis Hanson:
…how would we return to sanity in California, a state as naturally beautiful and endowed and developed by our ancestors as it has been sucked dry by our parasitic generation? The medicine would be harder than the malady, and I just cannot see it happening, as much as I love the state, admire many of its citizens, and see glimmers of hope in the most unlikely places every day.
After all, in no particular order, we would have to close the borders; adopt English immersion in our schools; give up on the salad bowl and return to the melting pot; assimilate, intermarry, and integrate legal immigrants; curb entitlements and use the money to fix infrastructure like roads, bridges, airports, trains, etc.; build 4-5 new damns to store water in wet years; update the canal system; return to old policies barring public employee unions; redo pension contracts; cut about 50,000 from the public employee roles; lower income taxes from 10% to 5% to attract businesses back; cut sales taxes to 7%; curb regulations to allow firms to stay; override court orders now curbing cost-saving options in our prisons by systematic legislation; start creating material wealth from our forests; tap more oil, timber, natural gas, and minerals that we have in abundance; deliver water to the farmland we have; build 3-4 nuclear power plants on the coast; adopt a traditional curriculum in our schools; insist on merit pay for teachers; abolish tenure; encourage not oppose more charter schools, vouchers, and home schooling; give tax breaks to private trade and business schools; reinstitute admission requirements and selectivity at the state university system; take unregistered cars off the road; make UC professors teach a class or two more each year; abolish all racial quotas and preferences in reality rather than in name; build a new all weather east-west state freeway over the Sierra; and on and on.
In other words, we would have to seance someone born around 1900 and just ask them to float back for a day, walk around, and give us some advice.
It’s hard to see much hope, given how the looters in Sacramento have arranged things with their gerrymandered districts.
On that last recommendation, does he mean upgrading I-80, or a new freeway with a different (presumably more southerly) route? Perhaps just south of Yosemite, providing a quick route to the Mammoth ski area for the Bay Area? But where would it hook into another interstate? The only two options are I-80, way to the north, or I-15, far south. Ideally, I guess it would continue east all the way across Nevada to extend I-70 in Utah all the way to California. In any event, it’s a pipe dream given the current state of state finances.
[Update a while later]
I haven’t been up that way in a few years. Is 395 four lanes all the way to Mammoth through the Owens Valley now? That would be a natural place to hook in a new road.