The destruction started in California.
Remember the good-old days when California had the 5th or 6th largest economy in the world and Gray Davis was governor? And then we fired him!
Now, as we near the end of the second term for the man who promised to clean up Davis’s mess, California has sunk to the 8th largest economy in the world and to No. 51 on the list of the worst states in the Union in which to do business. That in and of itself is hilarious since we have only 50 states, despite Obama’s comment during the presidential election campaign that he’d been to 57 states.
Nevertheless, ChiefExecutive.net just came out with its ranking of the best and worst states in which to do business and, well, you guessed it; California sucks! For you folks who see the glass as half full: California is the best state in the Union at driving business away. Either way, we suck! And, we excel at it!
In the May/June 2010 edition of ChiefExecutive.net, California ranked dead last in terms of its business acumen and its overall acceptance of private enterprise. From the online article, one CEO is quoted as saying “California is anti-business with anti-business regulations.”
Ironically, California seems to lead the nation in terms of setting political trends across the nation. How is that? How can a state that seems to excel at driving business away be looked up to by anyone serious about improving his or her standard of living?
What is really sad is one CEO was quoted in the article as indicating that he’d gladly move his agricultural business out of California if he could find another state with the kind of growing conditions we have here. Okay, so that’s two things we have going for us: our great soil and climate for growing the food and fiber that feeds and clothes the world, and our beautiful vistas from which to go “ooohh and ahhhh.”
California before and after? Once the icon for physical fitness, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has presided over California's colossal slide in economic status in the world.
As if California’s dismal business ranking by 651 of the nation’s CEO’s weren’t enough, the story likens California to Venezuela for its politics. Now that’s completely unfair: our leader is not a pudgy, tin-horned dictator who hasn’t missed a meal in some time; he’s the “Austrian Oak,” the six-time Mr. Olympia, the portrait of health and fitness who simply has a difficult time properly pronouncing “California!”
Then again our Legislature is a different story altogether. Some of these folks probably have photos of Hugo Chavez that they bow to during their regular religious rituals of socialist praise.
More telling of California’s utter failure from this article was the concern CEO’s have of California’s growing union workforce, much of which is employed by government. These public employees wield a significant amount of force in Sacramento, and as such are to blame for the notion that government must always grow. We’ve seen what an ever-growing government gets us, and it’s not good. While we lead the nation in tax rates, crime, public classroom size, and unemployment, these are not the kind of things that CEO’s and business leaders look to as positive indicators that relocating here would be a good thing.
I think California has struck the iceberg, and even if we change the command at the helm in November to a fiscally conservative, pro-business chief executive and replace the rest of the complicit crew, the ship is taking on water at an unrecoverable rate and no attempt at rearranging the deck chairs or altering the tune played by the orchestra is going to save this once-great state.