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FlashReport Weblog on California Politics

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Edward Ring

The University of Diversity Will Destroy America

America’s educational system is breaking, and the primary culprit is the diversity bureaucracy, now an industrial strength special-interest group that grows more powerful and more expansive every year. For years they have dominated America’s social sciences and humanities, and now they’re launching an assault on the hard sciences. If they are not stopped, they eventually will destroy America as a first-world democracy.

They’re well on their way. But it isn’t “racism”—the currency of the diversocrats—that is denying opportunities to “people of color.” It is failures in the social culture of the inner cities, even more than aggregate economic disadvantages, or the lousy, unionized public schools, that result in the chronic academic underachievement of their children.

There’s no money to be made, or votes to be had, however, in telling this tough truth, even though it might do a lot of good if enough people said it or heard it. The commitment to “diversity” in American university enrollment is absolute and all-powerful, despite the… Read More

Edward Ring

California’s GOP Plays it Safe When Safe Equals Death

In September 2016, Michael Anton published an influential essay entitled “The Flight 93 Election.” It compared the 2016 election to the tragic Flight 93 of 9/11/2001. Anton’s essay opened with this:“2016 is the Flight 93 election: charge the cockpit or you die. You may die anyway. You—or the leader of your party—may make it into the cockpit and not know how to fly or land the plane. There are no guarantees. Except one: if you don’t try, death is certain.”

California’s GOP faced a similar existential choice this weekend at their semi-annual state convention, when they had to elect a new party chairman. California’s GOP, like Flight 93, faces certain death. Many would say it is dead already. A new term has been coined to describe the status of the GOP in California, a “mega minority.” Whereas a “super minority” means your party holds less than one out of every three offices, a “mega minority” means your party holds less than one out of everyfouroffices. That wouldRead More

Richard Rider

In 2018 the nation’s population grew 50% faster than California

Below are the top ten states in their PERCENT of population growth this past year. Economics seems to play a major role in this growth.

The top five states are all “right to work” states — eight of the top ten. Consider that 27 of the 50 states are right to work states. One “top ten” fast growing state that is NOT a right to work state is Washington — but it has zero state income tax. Only Colorado is growing without a strong economic advantage. Must be that Rocky Mountain high.

Academics have correctly pointed out that the right to work law in itself may not be the driving force in a state’s growth. But these researchers also point out that such states all have a more business friendly climate than do the non-right to work states. In other words, “right to work” is a good indicator that the state likes businesses.

California? As a very anti-business state, the CA population grew 0.4%. The national average is 0.6% — 50% higher than California.

BTW, four of the BOTTOM five states are labor union-controlled states. They have no right to work laws.

Oddly… Read More

Richard Rider

The average new 2019 San Diego home buyer IMMEDIATELY starts saving over $665 a MONTH in property taxes — thanks to Prop 13

NOTE:This is an updated, expanded article — using December, 2018 numbers.

A common misconception is that Prop 13 protects only the “old people” — that the new home buyers gain little benefit from Prop 13. It’s an educational (and scary) exercise to calculate what California homeowners’ property taxes would be if Prop 13 had NOT passed in 1978 — and no subsequent reforms in property taxes occurred (a fair assumption, given Democrat dominance of the state legislature since 1970).

Most people have forgotten the following crucial aspect of the old CA property taxes: In 1977, the average property tax rate in California was 2.67 percent.Proposition 13 fixed the rate at 1 percent of the purchase price[plus a 2% annual increase, or the COL, if it’s less].

On top of the 1% base property tax rate are whatever additional taxes are approved to cover indebtedness, such as bonds — plus annual assessments for special districts. Although the additional taxes rate varies around the state, it generally runs at about two-tenths of 1 percent, setting the overall Proposition 13 rate… Read More

Code Blue: Little-known state agency may have just made California’s nursing shortage much worse

California’s health care system is struggling with an acute shortage of nurses, so industry professionals were puzzled by the Jan. 10 vote of a little-known state committee to limit enrollments at one of the state’s most successful nursing schools.

The Board’s Education and Licensing Committee voted 2-1 to recommend that the Board of Registered Nursing cap enrollments at West Coast University. The board is expected to consider that recommendation during its next meeting, Feb. 13-14 in Redondo Beach.

The unusual action left health policy experts puzzled.

Attendees at the Jan. 10 meeting said the committee majority offered no public explanation for the vote. And while the meeting agenda listed seven members of the Education and Licensing Committee, the West Coast University recommendation passed without a quorum.

Neither Donna Gerber, vice president of the committee, nor member Michael Jackson responded to requests for comment on the meeting. The meeting was not recorded and received no media coverage. Minutes have not yet been posted.

But attendees say they were surprised and… Read More

Richard Rider

U-Haul truck costs 19 times more to drive from SF to Phoenix than to drive that same truck back to SF

For decades — since about 1992 — there’s been an annual net outflow of people from California to other states. As a result, it’s always cost much more to rent a U-Haul from a CA city to some other state than to rent that same U-Haul on the reverse trip. Over the years, I’ve found that driving a U-Haul out of the Golden State can cost 2 to 4 times more than driving that truck back into CA.

But now in the San Francisco region, that ratio has exploded to a 19 to 1 difference. Here’s the latest (2/2019) U-Haul figures. Kudos to Economics Professor Mark Perry for providing this information on his blog.

Read More

Richard Rider

Dishonest public pension actuaries have used outdated mortality tables for decades


Underestimated life expectancy is yet another hidden cost of the nation’s guaranteed public employee pension plans. For decades these plans have systematically used outdated mortality tables — tables that assumed that retirees would die years earlier than is actually occurring. Of course, this “miscalculation” results in bigger pension payouts and “unexpected” increases in the unfunded pension obligation.

If an honest public pension actuary (government employee or “independent” auditor) tried to be more realistic with their mortality projections, they could count on being replaced in short order. The entire public pension actuary role as been a systematic fraud for generations, and only now are we facing the inevitable consequences.Read More

Richard Rider

Every kind of mass transit ridership is declining annually — and at a dramatic rate

Mass transit — especially trains — are LOVED by politicians. There are several special interest groups that support passenger trains (and therefore they support allied politicians) — while there’s no organized opposition. Mass transit makes for GREAT photo ops for the politicos — and the train (or even bus) is always heavily used the day a new line is opened.

The only niggling problem is that the more we spend on mass transit, the fewer people use the service! This decline has been occurring for many years, but this pronounced drop does nothing to deter politicians. They gleefully spending billions of dollars annually on 19th century technology that commuters don’t want to use. The same is true for the badly run bus systems, but at least those operations cost only a tiny fraction of the cute commuter trains — both to build and to operate.

The full article is below, but here’s a salient excerpt:

NationwideRead More

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