As California goes, so goes the nation — but even rank stupidity can be corrected

CraziforniaRoughly a year-and-a-half ago, I gave a rave review to Crazifornia, which my long-time friend Laer Pearce wrote. Since he published that book, California has only gotten more crazy, proving that everything he wrote was accurate and prescient.

People are catching on to the fact that they should listen to Laer if California is to have any hope of regaining its once golden glow and, more importantly, if the rest of America is to be stopped from following in California’s dross-strewn footsteps.  I was therefore beyond thrilled when I saw that Laer’s latest speech in Beverly Hills got the worldwide coverage it deserves thanks to a write-up in Breitbart:

The discussion began with Mr. Pearce agreeing with the AFA presenter’s assertion that progressive ideology is “deeply embedded” in California. The author said that progressivism’s anti-business, pro-regulation agenda has “run the state into the ground,” and added that it’s a “tragedy” that such a resource-filled state is struggling so badly. He explained that California often “gets away” with it, because many of the best minds in business, technology, and politics are in the state.

Mr. Pearce then directed the conversation to specific problems plaguing California. Quoting from his book, he said, “Despite rising taxes, services in the state continue to deteriorate.” To illustrate his point, Mr. Pearce asked the audience: “How many people here get their mail at 6 o’clock?” After almost everyone’s hand went up, one woman in the audience sighed, “I get mine at 7.” Mr. Pearce also noted that California has the lowest-rated tax collection service in the country, while burdening its residents with the highest taxes of any state. “You’d think they’d be good at it by now,” he quipped.

Next, the author shifted the forum’s focus to California’s inefficient bureaucracies. He related a personal experience he had with the California Coastal Commission in his hometown of South Orange County. Apparently, there was some mud on a neighborhood sidewalk that residents wanted scraped off. The Coastal Commission came in, surveyed the mud, and designated the small sidewalk area a “wetlands.” The Commission had found just one of three possible indicators of a wetlands environment; still, they sprung into action, erecting a bridge and guardrail around the area, spending about $200,000 of taxpayer money so they could brag about “preserving wetlands.” Mr. Pearce called the unelected Commission “extremely corrupt,” although he noted “it’s probably the best one I’ve seen in my lifetime.”

You can read more about Laer’s talk here, and I really do urge you to get Crazifornia, which isn’t just informative, but is also delightful.

That out-of-tune brassy sound you hear is me tooting my own horn

Real Clear Politics, Sunday, September 30, 2012:


I’m excited not only for myself, but for Laer Pearce, whose book, Crazifornia: Tales from the Tarnished State – How California is Destroying Itself and Why it Matters to America, is the subject of the post that RCP picked up.  It’s a great book, and as many Americans as possible should read it, so that they can fully understand what Progressive politics will do to the American landscape.

My review of Laer Pearce’s Crazifornia is up and running at PJ Lifestyle

I galloped through Laer Pearce’s Crazifornia: Tales from the Tarnished State – How California is Destroying Itself and Why it Matters to America, which is a great book.  My review is at PJ Lifestyle:

Reading my friend Laer Pearce’s book Crazifornia: Tales from the Tarnished State – How California is Destroying Itself and Why it Matters to America made me crazy. Laer is a wonderful writer with straightforward, prose, a witty sense of humor that doesn’t overwhelm the narrative, and a commanding mastery of facts about California’s politics, business, education, and public policy. In theory, I should have galloped through Craziforniain three hours. In fact, it took me three days to read.

Why did I have a problem with this fascinating book? Because, when I started I did not know how deep the Crazifornia rot ran in the state, nor was I aware quite how infectious the insanity is when it comes to the rest of America. To keep up with the deluge of evidence proving that California is indeed crazy, I repeatedly stopped reading so that I could scratch out little notes to myself: “California’s all-powerful bureaucrats are an army of Leftist Rube Goldberg’s with guns.” “This is a perfect example of voter credulity and bureaucratic overreach.” “California takes a legislatively created energy crisis and makes it worse with more legislation.” The scariest note I wrote was also the shortest: “As California goes, so goes the nation.”

That last note is why you should read the book — and give it to friends and family — in the days remaining before the election. California isn’t just a basket case, it’s a proselytizing basket case, with its environmental zealots, community organizers, and wishful economic thinkers aggressively selling their ideas to other states and to the federal government. As Laer demonstrates, while the recession is slowing the other forty-nine states from buying into California’s governing philosophy, the Obama government is an enthusiastic supporter. Another four years of Obama, and California won’t be the only bankrupt crazy place in America.

Read the whole thing here.

“Crazifornia”: A book that reveals the insane truth behind America’s most Progressive state

Those of you who were lucky enough to have started using the internet a few years ago probably remember Laer Pearce, who blogged at Cheat-Seeking Missiles.  Laer was one of my first blog friends, meaning that we corresponded by email and, eventually, we met.  He is precisely what you’d imagine him to be from his blog:  informed, analytical, brilliant, witty, and just an all-around great guy.

He stopped blogging a few years ago to devote his free time to writing a book about the insanity that is California.  Well, the book came out today!  It’s called Crazifornia. Here’s the Amazon book description:

When the agency responsible for state roads spends $4 million on new cars and trucks, then parks them unused for two years, that’s Crazifornia. When cancer warnings are required on buildings because they may contain estrogen or testosterone, that’s Crazifornia. And when a full-frontal governmental assault on business drives enough people out of a state in ten years to double the population of Oregon, that’s Crazifornia, too. Through tale after outrageous, funny, tragic tale, “Crazifornia: Tales from the Tarnished State” explains why California is crashing, making it a must-read for all Californians and for anyone who fears California may be coming their way soon. That’s why nationally syndicated radio talk show host Hugh Hewitt called Crazifornia “The most insightful book on California’s perilous condition – ever.” Part One provides history and perspective, explaining how the PEER Axis – Progressives, Environmentalists, Educators and Reporters – took over the Golden State and work to keep it a leader in Progressivism, generation after generation. Part Two looks at the current state of affairs in the Tarnished State – bureaucratic ineptitude, anti-business policies, a failed education system, entrenched environmentalism, unsustainable pensions and a perpetually unbalanced budget, and considers California’s options for the future. “One rarely reads such a funny account of such a sad subject,” said California columnist and author Steven Greenhut. “This is a great book to read, tearfully, as you pack the house in Orange County and wait for the moving van to take you to Nevada.”

I haven’t read the book yet (I’m buying it as soon as I finish this post), but I can tell you in advance what you’ll find: it will be extremely well-informed; easy to read despite it’s serious subject matter; as Steven Greenhut said in the review above, it will be funny despite the depressing subject matter; and you will get a glimpse into America’s future if Obama is elected and he gets a Democrat Congress. Also, if you look carefully, you made find some references to a certain Bookworm you know.

It’s such a joy when a friend completes a major, and important, project, and is able to share it with the world.  So you can imagine the pleasure I have in sharing the good news with you.

(The link above is to the Kindle version of the book.  If you prefer to feel the weight of the paper book in your hand, you can find the print edition here.)

A new book is coming out that I know we’ll love

One of my oldest blog friends, Laer Pearce, who used to blog at Cheat-Seeking Missiles before he turned his attention to writing a book, is now on the verge of publishing his book about the insanity that is California.  The book, unsurprisingly, is called “Crazifornia.”  While you’re waiting, please consider going over to the Facebook page and liking it.  Thanks.