August 9, 2022 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Plan To Carve California Into Six States? It’s Just A Bad Idea:

Here’s a piece of advice for registered voters: When petition carriers accost you outside supermarkets, big box stores or shopping malls asking you to help advance a plan to carve California into six states, don’t sign.

For this is one of the dopiest, goofiest ideas ever to come up in California, which has a long history of flirting with – and sometimes adopting – nutty schemes.

This plan would create the nation’s wealthiest state – to be named Silicon Valley and to include most everything from San Francisco south through Monterey County – and also the poorest – Central California, including the San Joaquin Valley, with per capita income below even Mississippi’s.

You say you don’t like paying taxes to support two U.S. senators, a governor and a legislature of 120 persons? Well, get ready for 12 senators, six governors, all making well over $150,000 per year, and hundreds more lawmakers at more than $100,000 each, including perks.

How about the state of Jefferson, including several Northern California counties that have flirted for decades with the notion of leaving California and joining some jurisdictions in southern Oregon? This one would not have a single University of California campus. Are residents there ready to pay out-of-state tuition of more than $36,000 per year for their kids?

You think it’s tough to get agreements on water policy today with one state and the federal government involved? Just wait until six bureaucracies are floating ideas on how to divvy up scarce resources.

Think you pay too much income tax now? If your pay comes from various parts of California, under this plan you might have to file income tax returns and payments in multiple states.

And what if recreational marijuana were legal in, say, Silicon Valley, but not in some of the other new states? Californians could wind up in jail for bringing pot across the new state lines.

It’s true that venture capitalist Tim Draper, the man behind this initiative, which is now being circulated by his paid workers, has recognized some good ideas in the past. He made much of his money off early investments in things like Skype and PayPal.

Draper is also a libertarian. So maybe his real agenda here is to set up a situation where Silicon Valley firms like those he’s backed can bring in all the cheap Asian labor they want, undercutting wages for qualified Americans.

By going the initiative route with this idea, Draper circumvents any need to get it approved by the current state Legislature, which would nix the idea in a moment. Instead, if this measure passed, only Congressional approval would be needed to make it reality. In a climate where representatives of other states consistently vote to deprive California of its fair share of federal spending, Congress isn’t likely to multiply this state’s Senate seats by six.

But there remains the possibility that one major party or the other might see at least temporary political advantage in saying yes. There would be a strong possibility that at least three of the projected new states (Central California, Jefferson and South California, including Orange and San Diego counties) might elect two Republican senators each. If it became likely that another two GOP senators might somehow emerge, Republicans in Congress just might take to the idea.

So it’s up to Californians to stop this ludicrously flawed idea before its goes any further. The first thing they can do is refuse to sign petitions aiming to put it on the November ballot.

in Opinion
Related Posts

SMa.r.t. Column: Ode to the Future of My City

August 8, 2022

August 8, 2022

How sad it is to journey to Santa Monica and I can’t find it.The open blue sky hides behind canyon...

SMa.r.t. Column: Why Native Gardens?

July 22, 2022

July 22, 2022

Voltaire said it best at the end of his 1759 novel  Candide: “We must cultivate our own garden”. This simple...

SMa.r.t. Column: We’re All Wet – Not!

July 15, 2022

July 15, 2022

Don’t you think that if you heard, or read, statements from controlling government agencies that said you were threatened by...

Affordability Answer: A New Tax on Housing Speculators?

July 8, 2022

July 8, 2022

By Tom Elias, Columnist The TV commercials and online ads are fast becoming ubiquitous: “We’ll buy your house as is,”...

SMar.t. Column: Has the Promenade Turned a Corner?

July 8, 2022

July 8, 2022

In large complex systems with dynamically balanced forces, it’s paradoxically often hard to tell when something has actually happened, For...

Column: Groundwater Law Has Not Stopped Subsidence

July 1, 2022

July 1, 2022

By Tom Elias Drive almost any road in the vast San Joaquin Valley and you’ll see irrigation pipes standing up...

SMa.r.t. Column: It’s Time to Look at the Facts of Santa Monica’s Housing History

June 30, 2022

June 30, 2022

The Narrative: Santa Monica’s decades-long housing construction “shortage”  The Narrative endlessly repeats the refrain that for decades Santa Monica has...

SMa.r.t. Column: The Mansionization of Santa Monica

June 17, 2022

June 17, 2022

Editor’s note: This column originally appeared in print in 2016.  In the 1980s, Santa Monica’s single family zoning code was...

OP-Ed Response to DTSM Board Chair Barry Snell and Plea to City Council Regarding Safety Ambassadors and Ambassador Program

June 14, 2022

June 14, 2022

I am responding to the OP-ED (dated June 7, 2022, Santa Monica Mirror) by City-appointed DTSM Board Member and now...

SMa.r.t. Column: Wheeling Electrically

June 9, 2022

June 9, 2022

A recent weekend visit to Dana Point, on the Orange County coastline, revealed a curious scene: dozens, if not hundreds...

Population Loss: New Era or Pandemic Glitch?

June 3, 2022

June 3, 2022

By Tom Elias, Columnist The numbers suggest a major change is underway in California. It would take a Nostradamus to...

SMa.r.t. Column: The Sound of Silence Is Big & Tall

June 3, 2022

June 3, 2022

All too often these days we find ourselves wondering how we could have been so correct about so many planning...

OP-Ed: DTSM Chair Barry Snell on Safety Ambassadors

June 2, 2022

June 2, 2022

By Barry Snell Chair, Downtown Santa Monica, Inc. Board of Directors  The Downtown Santa Monica, Inc. (DTSM) Board of Directors...

Affordable Spaces for Small Business

May 27, 2022

May 27, 2022

Los Angeles County recently proposed a program providing financial incentives for certain “Legacy” family businesses in their original historical location....

​​Doubt Removed: Oil Refiners Gouging Us

May 23, 2022

May 23, 2022

By Tom Elias, Columnist There was some room for doubt back in February, when gasoline prices rose precipitously: Until the...