Golden State No Longer: A Disaffected Californian’s Thoughts on Escaping from America’s Greece

I recently trekked back to California to visit my family and enjoy some downtime after two months in the District.  I certainly needed some R&R to recharge and relax. (The political arena is a hectic albeit wonderful sphere to be immersed in. I’ve learned that any getaway you get shouldn’t be taken for granted.)  I had the chance to see some friends, visit my extended family, and finally went to  the Ronald Reagan President Library in Simi Valley, CA. It was a much-needed trip!

Now, I’m back in Northern Virginia and ready to resume my job.  I’ve got wonderful Field Representatives working with me, and have connected with many eager and bright students excited to shake things up on their campuses. I’ll be traveling up North soon and will be sure to chronicle each trip I make (when time permitted).

With this recent trip back home, it dawned upon me that I will not be back to CA for a very long time. While I’ll miss my home state, I have no regrets moving to the DC-metro area. Yes, it’s muddled with corruption – but it’s full of life and culture unseen on the West Coast. I will always be a proud yet disaffected Californian, and certainly one for the right reasons. Some will accuse me of betraying my roots for fleeing the state. (Mind you, there are no jobs for young people – or any Californian – given the dismal economic and moral state it is in.) I seized an opportunity to work for a conservative nonprofit – Leadership Institute – and took it.

As a California refugee taking shelter in the Commonwealth, I have some interesting observations about my home state now that I no longer live there. Here are the reasons why I’m happy I left:

- Outstanding, high state government debt: As of August 28, 2012, California’s debt rests at $617 billion – the highest total state debt in the entire country according to State Budget Solutions. Need I say more?

-Democrat-controlled state legislature: Both the State Senate and Assembly are controlled by Democrats who  have ushered in radical and arguably anti-American legislation. For example, legislation includes the multiple parents bill, gay history in K-12, abortion carried out by mid-wives/nurses,  DREAM Act, bans on open carry of handguns, and more.

- Endless call for more taxes: Since the return of Moonbeam (Jerry Brown) as Governor, there are more calls for taxing wealthy individuals in the Golden State. Brown and his allies are pushing Prop. 30 on the November ballot, which would “increase California’s sales tax by one-quarter of a cent for four years. It calls for an increase in state income tax on taxpayers who earn more than $250,000 a year for the next seven years,” according to CBS L.A. AEI president Arthur C. Brooks writes in “The Road to Freedom” that when presenting the moral case for free enterprise, it is important reduce spending, not add more taxes, when solving budget problems.

-Welfare state: Yahoo!  reported in December 2011 that California, the largest welfare state in the U.S., “has one-eighth of the nation’s population but one-third of all welfare recipients.”

-Too much spent on education coupled with corrupt teachers unions: Total expenditures (plus state bonds) for education in Fiscal Year 2012-2013, including K-12 and higher education, totaled 35.7 percent of California’s state budget,  or $39,575,109 for K-12 and $10,050,905 for higher education as of May 2012. Tuition hikes plague the University of California and California State University systems, and administrators continue to receive high salaries. (As someone who recently graduated from a UC school, I see the problem beset in education, much like the state budget, in refusal to gut waste and deny tenure/pensions to professors undeserving of it.) Another problem plaguing education in California is corruption in the California Teachers Association and similar teachers unions, whose bosses and members are too concerned about their salaries and benefits – not the welfare of their students. (California is in great need of school choice legislation. It would diminish teachers unions and dramatically improve education there.) When a sex scandal hit LAUSD last year (think worst school district in the nation), the teachers unions – in true fashion -  refused to address the issue and supported the defeat of a bill that would have tackled it, according to CNN:

While senators overwhelmingly voted in support of Senate Bill 1530, it was met with strong opposition from the powerful California Teachers Association.

The teachers’ union says that Padilla’s bill would have eliminated essential legal protections for teachers and that it believes the current system is an appropriate process.

Additionally, the CTA protects bad teachers thanks to tenure. It is also a big political player in Sacramento.

(There’s a lot to discuss regarding education in California, so I’ll detail it in a future post.)

-Illegal immigration: Illegal immigration has proven to be burdensome to the Golden State. Earlier this year, the state legislature passed the California DREAM Act – AB 130 (private scholarships)and AB 131 (public scholarships). This gave children of illegal immigrants and young illegal immigrants access to tuition regardless of their citizenship. Another crippling move that has emboldened illegal immigration is the DMV’s plan to issue drivers licenses to approximately 400,000 young illegals. Talk about oy vey…

There are many problems facing California – too many to list in a single blog post. It pains me to see my home state falter and become like Greece. I’ll even go so far as to call it a state riddled by Marxist and La Raza interests. Unfortunately, the Golden State must collapse and build anew. Otherwise, I’ll maintain that it is a lost cause.

Although I rag on California often, I will admit this: I’m glad I spent my formative years living there. I learned right from wrong, learned who to trust/who not to trust, enjoyed the beaches and nice weather, got my political start, was surrounded by family, and got to see leftist abuses at work.

“You can take the girl out of California, but you can never take the California out of the girl.”

Attend Eagle Forum of San Diego’s “Rise Up” Convention This June 1st

If you live in Southern California and are looking for an event to attend, then check out EFSD’s “Rise Up” Convention.

Speakers include Dinesh D’Souza, Brian Brown, Frank Gaffney, and more!

The event will take place at Skyline Church in San Diego from 4-9pm on June 1, 2012.

Register for the event here. Tickets cost $20. (Bring your children!)

If you’re interested in having a booth there, inquire here.

“Like” the event page and RSVP on Facebook.

Hope to see you there!

San Diego State U Promotes Blatant Secularism With Respective Class

I previously wrote about atheism and secularism here, and commented about “Atheist Awareness” Week at UCSD.

It appears that a growing trend towards secularism is being witnessed on college campuses nationwide. Religion, critics assert, corrupts people and makes them bigoted. As a result, atheism and secularism must succeed in order to combat the Judeo-Christian tyrannical stronghold in place in the United States! (Sarcasm intended).

In all seriousness, this trend signals a bad course in society. It is alarming that such “righteous” people are painting morals, Biblical teachings, and faithful people as boneheads, when they are the ones demanding special attention and conditioning programs to make us more accepting of their belief system.

Pitzer College in Southern California will be the first to launch this program. The press release elaborates further:

Claremont, Calif. (May 9, 2011) — Pitzer College will launch a Secular Studies Field Group in the fall 2011-12 academic year. With the creation of this department, Pitzer College will become the only higher education institution to offer courses and an undergraduate degree in secular studies.

The creation of a Secular Studies Field Group reflects an emerging interest in an awareness of the notable growth of secularity in America and elsewhere. For example:

  • Approximately 660,000 Americans join the ranks of those claiming no religion each year. Fifteen percent claims “none” when asked about religious affiliations, a doubling of “none” since 1990.
  • Twenty-seven percent of Americans currently “do not practice any religion” and 22% say that religion is “not a factor” in their lives.
  • The Secular Student Alliance – a college campus group for nonbelievers – reports 240 chapters nation-wide, up from 42 in 2003.
  • Almost 30% of Canadians can be considered secular and approximately 1 in 5 Canadians does not believe in God.
  • Fifteen percent of Australians claim to have no religious beliefs.
  • In France, 33% of the citizenry are atheists, while in Belgium, the percentage is 27%. Rates of unbelievers are even higher in the Czech Republic, Estonia and Slovenia.
  • Sizeable secular populations can also be found around the world including Israel, Uruguay, Japan, South Korea and Azerbaijan.

The Secular Studies Field Group will be headed by Pitzer College Professor Phil Zuckerman, an internationally renowned secular studies scholar. It will offer courses focused on various aspects of secularity from a historical, philosophical and sociological perspective. It entails the study of non-religious people, groups, thought and cultural expressions. Emphasis will be placed upon the meanings, forms, relevance and impact of political/constitutional secularism, philosophical skepticism and personal and public secularity.

Nevertheless, it looks like San Diego State will follow suit. KPBS reports the following about this development:

Southern California colleges are leading the country in the field of secular studies. Claremont college recently announced their latest bachelor’s program devoted to secular studies, UC Irvine now offers courses on Atheism and Secularism, and San Diego State University is debuting its first course on Atheism, Humanism and Secularism this Fall. We will be speaking with the SDSU professor who is instructing the course to discuss this recent trend in higher education and the field of religious studies.

Guest:

Professor Roy Whitaker, SDSU religious studies professor and expert in the history of religion and irreligion; and African American religious thought.

Students and taxpayers should be alarmed at how their money is being appropriated by university administrations. Instead of focusing on these politically correct, quasi-Marxist programs, why not invest in real religious studies? Talk about the persecution of Jews and Christians in Muslim countries in the present day, along with the growing phenomenon of militant Islam and rising anti-Semitism. Why not talk about religious persecution in the former USSR and why the absence of religion there corrupted people? Can’t they dedicate one lecture to religion and its value in society, or is that too much to do? Why don’t universities give a fair account about history/religion/politics, instead of spewing leftist propaganda?

The crusade to combat political correctness will ensue. We must do all in our power to vanquish it once and for all.

Pro-Israel Conference to Storm SoCal!

The David Project is hosting a preeminent pro-Israel conference tomorrow April 3rd at UC-Irvine, which is home to the most virulent Muslim Students Union group in the United States.

If you want to go (last minute) or are going and want more details, read here. Taken from “Southern California Israel Advocacy Conference Facebook Page”:

For the FIRST TIME, UC Irvine Anteaters for Israel is proud to present the Southern California Israel Advocacy Conference. This is a great opportunity to network with the Jewish student leadership of Southern California. 

-FREE BREAKFAST AND LUNCH ARE PROVIDED

-Breakout Advocacy Sessions

-Keynote Speakers, Judea Pearl and Noam Bedein

-Viewing of Oscar winning film for best documentary short- “Strangers No More”

Make sure to RSVP to Allegra Weinstein at allegrapweinstein@gmail.com

http://www.thedavidproject.org/
http://www.afiuci.org/

#!

**Please arrive half an hour early. Parking is free after reimbursement for non-UCI students!

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