Life in the People’s Republic of California

 It pains me, although probably not as much as it pains the people in California, to document things like this.

I’ve visited Northern California on multiple occasions. It’s really a beautiful place. There are places on the drive south on Highway 1 between San Jose and Monterey Bay that will just stop you in your tracks. The people are great, as long as you avoid politics.

There’s the rub-politics. Most people I’ve met in California, even those who will tell you “I’m a conservative!” are anything but. They want government to cure all their problems. They want government to keep those evil corporations in check, for one thing.

Except government usually does a poor job at it. Research the history of the last 25 years of Pacific Gas and Electric, usually known as PG&E. Government mandates have diverted money from necessary maintenance to “green power”. Because they’re supposed to go green, investment in traditional fuel power plants has been lacking. And this in a state where, despite the best efforts of the consumers who have put in LED bulbs and solar panels (now mandated in new residential construction) until their wallets have bled, uses one hell of a lot of electricity.

I remember the first time I flew into San Jose. It was at night. Flying over the Great Plains, you’d see a light or a small grouping of lights every so often. Crossing the coast range, it was a sea of light as far as you could see, north or south.

So, in addition to putting up with blackouts due to high winds that can take down poorly maintained lines, California is having blackouts because they can’t generate enough electricity to handle their maximum load. They’ve been putting up with these for years-I remember the jokes on the Johnny Carson Show about them.

I know a lot of people have bugged out of California, but most residents are staying. Whether it’s because “it’s home”, family, work, whatever-they’re staying. They’re buying generators to make their power ends meet, and those are controlled by the state.

I don’t know how they take it. I wouldn’t.

2 thoughts on “Life in the People’s Republic of California

  1. "Public Safety Power Shutoff"
    Oddly, having the power go out doesn't make me feel safer. Although, the most recent middle-of-the-night occurrence was useful in determining how well those dark spots in the back 40 show up using NVG. Pretty well, it turns out…

    I lived in San Diego for six years and through three earthquakes long ago. I don't recall ever losing power. Guess things have been going downhill.

  2. "I don't know how they take it. I wouldn't."

    You take it by gritting your teeth, lowering your head and praying "Some day. Some day my family will see what I see. Some day, my family will have had enough. Some day, I will finally be able to leave this state in my rear view mirror for the last time."

    If I left now, it would end my marriage and I would never see my grown kids or grandchildren again.

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