Editorial: Backward California

Partly because California officially lives in the past, Americans elsewhere must help the state deal with financial desperation. The $800 billion law Congress passed this month in an effort to stimulate the economy pushes an estimated $26 billion toward California. The state government has a budget deficit expected to reach a staggering $41 billion by the middle of 2010.The generosity gives American taxpayers dollars-and-cents reasons to ask how a state with extraordinary endowments of personal wealth and natural resources fell to such fiscal despair and whether it has done everything possible to solve its own problems. Answers to these questions should be especially poignant after the re...

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