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Homelessness is due in part to homelessness, but also to inadequate treatment of people suffering from mental illness and drug addiction. Many conservatives argue that the state has focused too much on low-income housing as a solution to homelessness. “Focus on treatment first rather than housing first,” says Wayne Winegarden, senior fellow in business and economics at the center-right Pacific Research Institute for Public Policy. “Otherwise, all we are doing is taking the problem from the street to the hotel room.”

Chris Hoene, executive director of the center-left California Center for Policy and Budget, disagrees with Winegarden and calls for more spending on Homekey, the state’s program to house the homeless. Social services must be “wrapped” or integrated with a home, Hoene says. It’s unfortunate, he says, that “people on different sides of the strategies are pitting possible solutions against each other.”

One advantage California has in addressing these and other challenges (fixing K-12 education, reducing the tax burden on families and businesses, etc.) is that the state’s finances have improved. The state raised taxes and cut spending to prepare for the Covid-19 recession, but tax revenues came in unexpectedly high because higher-income workers kept working and financial markets did well, generating taxable capital gains. California’s $ 100 Billion Return Plan, which Newsom signed in July, is a Christmas tree of Democratic priorities, including stimulus checks for two out of three Californians, renter assistance, homeless housing, small business tax relief and grants, universal pre-K, college savings accounts for low-income students, and investments in infrastructure and wildfire resistance.

I bounced this optimistic line of thinking back to Joel Kotkin, a professor at Chapman University in Orange, California, who is an expert on cities. It was more pessimistic. “The way our economy is structured, there is an incredible amount of wealth minted for a small number of people,” he said. “We have the worst overcrowding. The schools are terrible and they are going to get worse ”. He added: “I used to be an ambitious young person who went to California. I don’t think that’s happening anymore. “

It’s hard to argue with a veteran California observer like Kotkin, who began writing about Silicon Valley in 1975. On the other hand, the downtrend may be overblown. Matthew A. Winkler, editor-in-chief emeritus of Bloomberg News, observed earlier this year that people love declaring California “doomed.” It is not.


How you describe a bill depends on what you are talking about. If you are concerned about too much fiscal stimulus, then it makes sense to take note of tax increases and spending cuts. If you’re concerned about the size of government, taking note of spending cuts makes sense, but reducing the size of the bill by the amount of tax increases doesn’t make sense. The same goes for a Republican tax cut. If they cut taxes by $ 1.5 trillion and make up for it in full with $ 1.5 trillion in spending cuts, that’s a $ 1.5 trillion tax cut and here’s how. should be described. Only the offsetting of tax increases should be considered.


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