Well, it couldn’t be the ideas, they just weren’t implemented properly:
‘Egan and other turquoise dreamers seem to look at tenured teachers, happy prison guards, and fleeced one-percenters and believe conditions are promising enough to move on to romantic dreams of the future.’
Mead seems to be envisioning a reinvigorated liberalism 5.0, arguing that the current union fights, ecotopia, high-speed rail plans, and progressivism aren’t necessarily the best way forward given America’s challenges. There’s been a fundamental shift that we must adjust to, and it involves technology and globalization for starters.
California public salaries and benefits are eating the budget.
It’s not clear where the jobs are coming from, but they won’t all be from tech, knowledge, and the ‘creative class.’ It’s also not clear to me enough jobs are going to come from lost manufacturing, industry, energy and agriculture, either, but with the current administration at the helm, we’ll have to wait to find out.
Surely, this puts Mead at odds with the NY Times of the moment. As for green, I suspect you don’t get the new urbanists nor the rooftop gardens of Brooklyn, tying into ‘creative’ hipster culture and the individual’s journey of the Self, without the beats and the hippies having come before. There’s often a communal and collectivist political philosophy at work.
As for unions nationally, you probably don’t get the GM bailout, nor some presidential support of the NLRB lawsuit filed against Boeing. You probably don’t get the authoritarian/technocratic longing for China’s high-speed rail, nor the constant issues of race defined on the activist’s terms and the strange political bedfellows of post 60’s logic.
This can make a new liberalism, or some kind of neo-liberal resurgence, harder to imagine. Here’s to hoping, at least for the sake of fiscal sanity.
As for California, I imagine it must be tough for Victor Davis Hanson, a well-educated, reasonably conservative Democrat from a farming family in the Central Valley looking out upon the coast. He writes:
‘Soon, even the Stanford professor and the La Jolla administrator may learn that illegal immigration, cumbersome regulations, and the terrible elementary schools affect them as well.
The four-part solution for California is clear: don’t raise the state’s crushing taxes any higher; reform public-employee compensation: make use of ample natural resources: and stop the flow of illegal aliens. Just focus on those four areas-as California did so well in the past-and in time, the state will return to its bounty of a few decades ago. Many of us intend to stay and see that it does.’
California’s anti-union and anti-immigration democrat-Full video and background on Mickey Kaus here.
A good post on Robinson Jeffers from Malcolm Greenhill, which highlights how the rugged and vast beauty of California makes it easier to imagine what culture is, and what it ought to be on this outpost of Western Civilization.
-A link for Michael Lewis’ article about California politics, public pensions and Schwarzenegger’s time in office.
Dream big: Via Reason: ‘California’s Public Transportation Sinkhole’ A great city deserves great art extravaganzas…: L.A.’s New Public Art Piece ‘The Levitated Mass,’ Or As The American Interest Puts It: ‘A Moving Rock’
The people who promise solutions to poverty and homlessness seem to be engaged in a utopian cost-shifting exercise which favors their interests and overlooks crime, violence and personal responsbility…hardly a way to balance the budget: Repost-Heather MacDonald At The City Journal: ‘The Sidewalks Of San Francisco’…
Some concentrated wealth on top, a stalled legislature with members who know how to play the game…and a service sector beneath…that probably can’t go on forever: …From The WSJ: ‘Joel Kotkin: The Great California Exodus’…