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"There's a mournfulness going on—people are talking about secession, and they're not completely joking. I haven't experienced or witnessed anything like it since 1972 when George McGovern lost to Richard M. Nixon."
Lawrence O'Donnell, MSNBC political analyst and West Wing writer
The only boundaries are in your mind.
New California Republic
For every dollar California taxpayers send to the federal government, about 78-cents is returned to the state. Contrast that with other states, e.g. the state of New Mexico gets a whopping $2.34 back for every dollar that goes to Washington. Others getting more than their fair share include—North Dakota, $2.04; Alaska $1.91; Mississippi, $1.88; West Virginia, $1.81; Montana, $1.65; Alabama, $1.64; South Dakota, $1.58; Hawaii, $1.56; Arkansas, $1.55.
FormelanThose states are getting a pretty good return on investment, don’t you think? But what it really comes down to is Californians are subsidizing these states. The guys holding the purse strings in Washington are playing us like a violin.
Big and strong erection
Imagine what California could do with that extra 20-plus cents?
Ask yourself this question—Could we as Californians form a government that is more efficient and responsive to the needs of Californians than the federal government? Be careful before you answer that. If you said “No” then you must ask yourself if you really think our federal government is efficient and responsive. Do you think the combined special interests in all the other states really take to heart the interests of the people of California?
The fact is, under our current relationship with the federal government, California taxpayers are getting ripped-off. We are losing money that could be better directed toward the needs of people in this state. Admittedly, California has had its share of budgetary and management problems. But don’t you think we could do better if the albatross of the federal government was removed? An independent California would demand more accountability from its leaders. It’s easier for Californians to “throw the bums out” of Sacramento than getting rid of the pork barrel spending champions of other states.
Consider those states listed above and then play match the U.S. Senator. Why does New Mexico get so much money? Answer: Sen. Pete Domenici who has been the chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee for how long? Alaska has pork champion Ted Stevens. West Virginia has Robert Byrd. Mississippi has Trent Lott. South Dakota HAD Tom Daschle. These senators from small states wield an incredible amount of power and it is astonishingly disproportionate to the larger states.
Now you might say it’s the fault of Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein. The answer is to vote for a Republican senator from California. Hmm, great idea. And then we could wait around for that unnamed Republican senator from California to weasel their way into a position of power and influence to redirect more money back to our state. How long would that take? 10, 15, 20, 30 years? And what guarantee do we have of that happening? Are we going to pin the hopes of California’s future on one, or possibly, two, senators to fight against the entrenched dominance of a federal system that is already full of inbreds?
Isn’t the easiest way of cutting the purse strings to take away the purse?
Let’s understand something about California voters. They tend to vote blue with their hearts when it comes to social values. They tend to vote red with their minds when it comes to fiscal restraint. In an independent California isn’t it possible we could actually create a society that offered the best of both worlds? Really, seriously, California independence makes sense because our spending would be more in tune with the hearts and minds of Californians.
Would it be perfect? No. Could it be better than what we presently have? I think you have to say, “Yes.”