Sunday, August 14, 2011

Not Getting It

Instapundit mentions the problem of economic refugees from Taxachussetts who have ruined New Hampshire, and from California who have ruined just about everywhere.  He quotes a reader: "the newcomers seem to have no clue that the policies they support are the very same ones that ruined the state they fled.”

I am reminded of something from 1980 or so.  My wife and I had just married.  We were eating outside at All American Burger on Wilshire Blvd. in Santa Monica.  Santa Monica had become the new destination for hard left sorts, eager to participate in Tom Hayden and Jane Fonda's Campaign for Economic Democracy takeover of Santa Monica in the 1981 City Council elections.   (I finished next to last in the City Council race.)

At the next table, two trendy young lefties, both apparently fresh arrivals in the Los Angeles basin from somewhere back East, were having a conversation.  It was a seriously predictable conversation; think "herd of independent thinkers."  I even told my wife, very quietly, what the next topic was going to be: Mulholland, the Owens Valley water project, and the corruption of Los Angeles politics in the 1920s.  And sure enough, within 30 seconds, that's where they had gone.  It was astonishing how easy it was to figure out how their minds worked--or rather, how few original thoughts they enjoyed.

But the funny part was when one of them said to the other (and this was obviously a long time ago): "Los Angeles's economy seems to be pretty healthy, in a laissez-faire sort of way, but you know, there's absolutely no provision for public policy planning."  And it was clear that neither of these trendy lefties saw that there might be some connection there.  Imagine that.


  1. Back in the 70's, Herb Caen (well known columnist for the pre-crazy San Francisco Chronicle) wrote of being told about a roadside (northbound) sign at the CA - Oregon border:

    Don't Californicate Oregon

    So even then, SOMEONE had already figured it out.

  2. It's odd to realize that liberalism, in this sense, is a viral disease. The disease infects its host State, which then drains the resources (via taxation and regulation) of the State to create new viruses (those who support the program). At some point, the State "bursts", and the viruses (those who support those programs, but don't understand why their State is no longer a happy place to live) move away to nicer states...only to say "This State is nice, but do you know what it really needs? Social Programs!"

    It's kindof sad to see happen; I'm not quite sure what to do about it, though, except to try to tell the viruses to back off, and to explain to them that their home States were so miserable because of those stupid social programs!

  3. They probably think they're fleeing overpopulation.