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Mr. Newsom, Start Governing and Stop Grandstanding

Mr. Newsom, Start Governing and Stop Grandstanding

President Joe Biden (R) greets California Governor Gavin Newsom and others after disembarking Air Force One at San Francisco International Airport in San Francisco on Nov. 14, 2023, as he arrives to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) leaders' week. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images)

Christian Milord

Christian Milord

12/6/2023

Updated: 12/21/2023

Commentary
What is the role of a state governor who is elected by the voters every four years? Aren’t they supposed to enforce laws and represent the interests of the state’s citizens?
Well, California Gov. Gavin Newsom is on a “Campaign for Democracy,” yet far too often he promotes policies that defy the people’s will by catering to the most strident voices in the woke industrial complex.
In his recent debate with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Mr. Newsom attempted to brush off his numerous failures in a glib manner and attempted to create his own facts. Apparently, he didn’t heed the sage advice of Daniel Patrick Moynihan who noted, “You are entitled to your opinion. But you are not entitled to your own facts.”
In late November, the Southern California News Group (SCNG) laid out a full-page comparison between California and Florida in the Orange County Register. In all of the quality-of-life indices except for health care, Florida beat California in most cases by large margins. Some of the categories included crime, the economy, education, fiscal stability, infrastructure, opportunity, among others. One would hope that Mr. Newsom takes a hint from these disparities and starts to govern.
Instead of gallivanting around the country, genuflecting to tyrants such as Chinese leader Xi Jinping and gaslighting regarding Mr. DeSantis and other governors, Mr. Newsom could commit time to address California’s challenges that have unfolded during his watch. First, he could admit mistakes he has made that generated a large exodus of Californians who seek freedom and opportunity elsewhere.
Next, Mr. Newsom must address the crisis of crime and homelessness in the state. California has about 12 percent of the national population, yet 40 percent of the overall number of homeless in the country. Escalating carjackings, menacing drug abusers, and smash and grab crimes are barely met with a slap on the wrist due to soft-on-crime policies.
District attorneys need to crack down on crime and eliminate no-cash bail so that law abiding citizens can feel safer. Criminals who break the law must be held responsible for their lawless behavior. Rehabilitation can only occur when lawbreakers accept accountability and seek to change their lives. Mr. Newsom, support law and order at all levels.
Third, instead of deficit spending and an accumulating state debt, Mr. Newsom ought to spend taxpayer dollars effectively, and encourage economic growth through regulatory reform and tax cuts. Currently, California’s fiscal health rating is about 40th among the fifty states, which is inexcusable. Reduced government spending can stimulate employment and business growth while taming inflationary trends.
Rather than waste billions of dollars on the high-speed rail debacle, Sacramento ought to repair bridges and roads and expand water storage facilities such as aqueducts and reservoirs. Moreover, Mr. Newsom should study free market economics as outlined by Frederic Bastiat, Milton Friedman, Friedrich Hayek, Ludwig von Mises, Murray Rothbard, and Thomas Sowell. He could then reject crony capitalism wherein the government picks winners and losers in the marketplace.
Fourth, California’s public education system is failing when less than half of students are proficient in the core subjects, and absenteeism is rampant. The role of public schools is to teach the basics, not to raise children or brainwash them. Parents have the responsibility to raise their children and help them develop character traits for a lifetime.
Mr. Newsom ought to persuade public school districts to teach core subjects, solid electives, and the trades in order to compete with charter, private, and religious schools. He also ought to be aware of how well international schools are performing in other developed countries. The focus ought to be on discipline, academic rigor, critical thinking, excellence, and merit.
Fifth, instead of micromanaging cities and school boards, Mr. Newsom should allow local entities to govern with the authority they are afforded under the law. Stop trying to exclude parents from the school communications loop and allow them to have an input regarding curricular issues. Stop pressuring cities such as Huntington Beach to comply with arbitrary housing policies.
Sixth, Mr. Newsom ought to allow the state to be energy independent to a greater degree instead of importing about a third of its energy from other states. California has plenty of fossil fuel resources, which could be utilized along with nuclear and solar energy to meet the state’s growing needs. Don’t attempt to coerce Californians into accepting a green energy fantasy, because it only leads to increased costs for all energy sources.
Finally, Mr. Newsom needs to put California’s house in order instead of grandstanding on the national stage. If he fails to govern, he will be doomed to repeat the same mistakes. According to a well-known saying, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” Mr. Newsom, instead of doubling down on socialist culture war policies that erode liberty, learn from your errors, and then govern wisely.
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Christian Milord

Christian Milord

Author

Christian Milord is an Orange County, California-based educator, mentor, USCG veteran, and writer. He earned his M.S. degree from California State University, Fullerton, where he mentors student groups and is involved with literacy programs. His interests include culture, economics, education, domestic and foreign policy, and military issues. He can be reached at cnvmilord@sbcglobal.net

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