Victor Davis Hanson – Who’s ‘They’ !?!?

First – the ‘Who’s they’ clip for context:

Now the real article (emphasis mine):

How does one explain how California is broke, tens of billions of dollars in aggregate debt, despite having among the highest sales and income taxes in the nation?

We are naturally rich beyond belief—timber, oil, agriculture, a long sea-coast, wonderful weather, mountains, sea, and valleys—and inherited lucrative industries in tourism, computers and software, defense and great universities. Our grandparents left us a once wonderful freeway network, a tripartite higher education system, ports, airports, dams and canals.

So what went wrong, and why are tens of thousands of Californians leaving the state with bachelor degrees and above, while tens of thousands enter without high-school diplomas?

Many answers have been offered—incompetent governance, judicial intrusions, the ballot propositions, trial lawyers, unions, dysfunctional and politically-correct schools, or illegal immigration. But look at it in some sense as the long hoped-for end of the nebulous “them / they.”

For years the open borders lobby accused “them” (whites? The establishment? Conservatives? etc.) of racism in wanting the border with Mexico closed, an end to state entitlements to illegal aliens (remember the Satanic Prop 187?), and deportations of thousands of aliens in state prisons (a cost nearing $1 billion per annum). But now the state legislature is largely controlled by those who in the past argued for de facto open borders and an expansion, not a curtailment, of entitlements for those without legal residence. So whom to blame? There is no “they” anymore. The outsiders are insiders and own the state—and its contradictions they once helped to ensure.

Ditto environmentalism. “They” (fill in the blanks: right-wing employers, CEOs, national companies, etc.) were the villains to be overcome in order to stop drilling off our shores, and to put ever more of our timber and recreational and scenic areas into no-use wilderness areas. We were not to build dams. No more canals. Put aside more farm land. No more nuclear plants. Forget coal. Tax gasoline and make it expensive to refine. It is fair to say now that the environmentalist agenda runs the state, and so there likewise is no more “them” to blame—and we must live with the results. I cannot begin to count in my own personal realm of knowledge the farmers who went broke, the high-tech engineers who moved to Nevada, the small business owners who shut down or moved out of state.

Anyone with capital who wants to start business X, knows that he can be put out of business by one supposed sexual harassment suit, a racial discrimination complaint, trying to fathom 500 pages of state EPA applications, a 10% income tax rate, and now a 9% sales tax to come. In California we hunt out the misdemeanor and ignore the felonies. Drive down my avenue, drop five trash bags of wet garbage on the side of the road, and the chances are great you will never be held accountable (even if your receipts are found in the trash and turned over to the sheriff), but please don’t wire an outdoor light in the barnyard without a permit. You see, anyone who nods and obeys the law and pays, we hound; anyone who simply won’t or can’t, or causes too much trouble, we the state employee simply ignore.

Ditto unions and big government. Ever more high pensions, ever more strict work rules, ever more administrators and high salaries, ever more rules against firing and accountability—and ever fewer to pay for it all. The evil “they” who used to try to moderate unions and state spending are gone—dead, moved away, retired, zilch. And so we the taxpayers work for the unionized government employee rather than vice versa.

So now those who want unchecked entitlements, open immigration, restrictions on resource development, unionized work forces and ever expanded government won—and won big. The problem is, again, the evil “they” who were to pay for all this in ever increased income and sales taxes, to take the blame of being racist, or sexist, or homophobic or greedy, are pretty much gone (cf. the last stand of the 1% of the state that pays the majority of state income taxes). There are no more “greedy” left to pay money or emotional penance, and the therapeutic mindset is now screaming to high heaven as it looks for its awful, but missing mean parent to make it all right.

I love how people always point to the ‘they’ who will screw everything up. And then when ‘they’ become ‘them’ – they really screw stuff up.

New Cars in California Must Display Global Warming Score

If you have ready some of the very differing opinions on global warming (whether or not it’s man caused…) then this should worry you. Already, public policy is being enforced based on what is very possibly junk science…

California is making it mandatory for cars to be labeled with global warming scores, figures that take into account emissions from vehicle use and fuel production.

The law requiring the labels goes into effect at the start of next year for all 2009 model cars, though its expected the labels will be popping up on cars in the coming months.

The labeling law forces cars for sale to display a global warming score, on a scale of one to 10, which is based on how vehicles in the same model year compare to one another. The higher the score, the cleaner a car is. The score takes into account emissions related to production of fuel for each vehicle as well as the direct emissions from vehicles.

Things like this remind me how happy I am NOT to live in such a basket-case Nanny-State like California. Apparently this study (30,000 Scientists Rejecting Anthropomorphic Global Warming Hypothesis) was missed by the governing Californians…

If you click ‘environmentalism’ in the tags on the right (or below) you can read a ton of other perspectives on the whole climate change issue that you probably wont hear on the news.

Also, this just in…

People who Fart Frequently Issued Stickers Warning Vendors: No Beans

California is making it mandatory for frequent flatulators to be labeled with global warming scores, figures that take into account emissions from heavy colon use and fart production.

The law requiring the labels goes into effect at the start of next year for all frequent consumers of Taco Bell, though it’s expected the labels will be required on consumers of all Mexican foods in the coming months.

The labeling law forces frequent flatulators (also called fart-bags or gas-blasters, and cheese-slicers) to display a global warming score, on a scale of one to 10, which is based on how ‘farters’ in the same year compare to one another based on food choices. The higher the score, the cleaner a flatulator is. The score takes into account emissions related to bean consumption for each flatulator as well as the direct emissions exiting buttocks…

A Constructionist Judge (Updated)

Here’s another misconception – that conservatives want to only appoint conservative judges. Wrong. Conservatives want to appoint justices that do the following:

Justice Carol Corrigan opens her dissent (Updated):

In my view, Californians should allow our gay and lesbian neighbors to call their unions marriages. But I, and this court, must acknowledge that a majority of Californians hold a different view, and have explicitly said so by their vote. This court can overrule a vote of the people only if the Constitution compels us to do so. Here, the Constitution does not. Therefore, I must dissent.

[..]

History confirms the importance of the judiciary’s constitutional role as a check against majoritarian abuse. Still, courts must use caution when exercising the potentially transformative authority to articulate constitutional rights. Otherwise, judges with limited accountability risk infringing upon our society’s most basic shared premise — the People’s general right, directly or through their chosen legislators, to decide fundamental issues of public policy for themselves.

Judicial restraint is particularly appropriate where, as here, the claimed constitutional entitlement is of recent conception and challenges the most fundamental assumption about a basic social institution.

The majority has violated these principles. It simply does not have the right to erase, then recast, the age-old definition of marriage, as virtually all societies have understood it, in order to satisfy its own contemporary notions of equality and justice.

[…]

The principle of judicial restraint is a covenant between judges and the people from whom their power derives.  It protects the people against judicial overreaching.  It is no answer to say that judges can break the covenant so long as they are enlightened or well-meaning.

The process of reform and familiarization should go forward in the legislative sphere and in society at large.  We are in the midst of a major social change.  Societies seldom make such changes smoothly.  For some the process is frustratingly slow.  For others it is jarringly fast.  In a democracy, the people should be given a fair chance to set the pace of change without judicial interference.  That is the way democracies work.  Ideas are proposed, debated, tested.  Often new ideas are initially resisted, only to be ultimately embraced.  But when ideas are imposed, opposition hardens and progress may be hampered.

We should allow the significant achievements embodied in the domestic partnership statutes to continue to take root.  If there is to be a new understanding of the meaning of marriage in California, it should develop among the people of our state and find its expression at the ballot box.”

Plain and simple. It is not the business of the court to impose legislature. That’s the very point of the Legislative body. If that’s not the case, then why bother voting? Appoint seven or so dictators and let them decide everything.

Essentially – the Justices have said, “We really don’t care what Californians want, we will define Marriage – we won’t let the people do it.