California Failing

Dry farmland being tilled near Corcoran, Calif., in August. California’s current drought is in its fourth year, but research indicates that the state and the rest of the West had ancient megadroughts that lasted decades and sometimes two centuries.

Joel Kotkin has admirably chronicled the decline and fall of California. Over the past few years he has explained why California is failing. He concludes that if you are looking toward a bright future for America, don’t look to California.

California has met the future, and it really doesn’t work. As the mounting panic surrounding the drought suggests, the Golden State, once renowned for meeting human and geographic challenges, is losing its ability to cope with crises. As a result, the great American land of opportunity is devolving into something that resembles feudalism, a society dominated by rich and poor, with little opportunity for upward mobility for the state’s middle- and working classes.

His most recent article in The Daily Beast revolves around the current problem: drought. California is fast running out of water. Apparently, the green policies adopted by Gov. Jerry Brown and his predecessors have contributed to the problem…

Related: NYT has an article on the drought, explaining that periods of drought have occurred in the past.  I found this graph interesting.  It seems there is a lot about climate changes that we do not understand.


  • Xavier

    I’d really like to see the numbers that generated that graph; it’s clear that there’s a lot more ‘dry’ than ‘wet’ so exactly where did the average come from?

    • Frau Katze

      The graph itself just says

      Sources: North American Drought Atlas, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and the National Science Foundation; Journal of Quaternary Science
      By The New York Times

  • Ron MacDonald

    There were two mega droughts between 900 and 1300 AD, can’t blame those two on global warming.

    • Frau Katze

      No, there’s more to climate than just CO2.

  • dance…dancetotheradio

    So, if California was drier than average during the Dust Bowl, why did all the Okies move there?

    • Martin B

      Dust storms blew all their topsoil into the Atlantic. They figured there must still be some good soil out west, way over on the other side of the mountains, in California.

      • dance…dancetotheradio

        Did you ever watch Carnivale?
        It had way better ratings than Girls does.
        And they cancelled it after two seasons.

        • Martin B

          Lena Dunham’s daddy was a wealthy conceptual artiste from New York. My guess is that the guy who created Carnivale had a nobody from nowhere for a daddy. Otherwise, Hollywood is a mystery to me. The overhyping of “Girls” sickens me as much as Lena does.

          • dance…dancetotheradio

            Girls doesn’t worry me in the least.
            I removed HBO from my cable years ago.
            I got it mainly for Oz, at first.
            And kept it for the Sopranos.
            And Curb Your Enthusiasm.
            As time has passed, Oz is in some ways a real bullshit show.
            If I was watching it again for the first time I would be cheering for the Aryan brotherhood guy and Adebisi.
            I still like the Irish, though.
            The supposed protagonists in that show were pussies and hypocrites.
            And I came to the light bulb moment a while ago that IS HBO.

  • Justin St.Denis

    But that smelt they diverted rivers to “save” is doing SPLENDIDLY. So everything is okay in TheLandOfFruitsAndNuts.

    You people are just H8ters!

    (sarc function disabled > OFF)

    • dance…dancetotheradio

      That’s environmentalists for you.
      The welfare of a fresh water anchovy is more important than the welfare of people.
      Mind you, if Compton has to suffer some water shortages then maybe the crips and the bloods might get something going.

  • Minicapt

    In 1981, the state was in drought; the solution then was to dam the “Rocky Mountain Trench” north of the 49th. and drain the water south, sharing some with Washington and Oregon as well.


  • John

    Scientists who’ve examined tree rings note that California, particularly in lthe south, has had droughts in the recent past ( less than 500 years ago) that have lasted 40 years. Who knows what’s causing this. All we know is that it’s an established fact that Southern California is very vulnerable to long droughts, and there doesn’t seem to be any connection with global warming or ‘little ice ages’ or whatever.
    If this drought lasts even two or three years longer California’s massive agicultural industry will be toast. We could be paying 5 or 6 bucks for a head of lettuce in a couple years time.

  • Hard Little Machine

    Will this send the Mexicans back?