Urbin Report

Tuesday, August 12, 2003

Thomas Sowell on the California state of mind:

Arnold Schwarzenegger has made a big splash in the media by entering the California governor's race. But the real news out of California came a few days before Arnold's political bombshell.

The latest census data show -- for the first time -- that more Californians have been moving to other states than people in other states have been moving to California. Between 1995 and 2000, California had a net loss of more than 600,000 people to other states. People are voting with their feet.

After years -- indeed, generations -- of being a magnet for people and businesses, California is now exporting both, including particularly young people. Why?

One reason is that California's politicians are following a strategy which has worked well politically in New York City -- milking the productive people in order to support the unproductive, whose votes count just as much and are easier to get.

They say that California is a state of mind -- and you can see what state that mind is in -- at least among the political classes. You can also see why many of the people whose work has contributed to building California into a great state are getting fed up and leaving.

Arnold Schwarzenegger already shows that he knows California will have to stop driving business away. But it will take a lot to terminate California's left-coast mindset.