Just in time for the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, California Governor Gavin Newsom has ordered 38 California counties moved to the “purple tier” of coronavirus prevention mandates. This means Californians are now subject to a curfew, wherein “non-essential work, movement, and gatherings must stop between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.”
Including all the major population centers in the state, this curfew comes on top of a reestablishment of a ban on eating indoors in restaurants, as well as a requirement that people wear masks whenever they leave their homes, and “limit mixing, practice physical distancing and wash their hands.” It also comes on the heels of Newsom’s recently updated “Mandatory Requirements for All Gatherings,” which specifies in preposterous detail exactly how families and friends may gather during the holidays.
The irony in all of these mandates coming from Newsom is that despite enraging millions of Californians who are not convinced they are at all necessary, the pandemic and Newsom’s aggressive response to it are providing political cover for Newsom among those other millions of Californians, more numerous, who believe lockdowns and curfews are necessary. Once this political cover goes away, that equation, favoring Newsom, is going to change. And the speed and ferocity of that change, when it happens, is going to surprise a lot of people.
Nowhere to Hide
When the pandemic is over, Newsom will have nowhere to hide. Newsom, along with the Democratic Party he represents, will preside over an economy battered beyond anything Californians have ever seen. Apart from the tech billionaires who have shamelessly profited as an entire population was driven into the virtual world, California’s economy will be a smoking ruin. The COVID-19 shutdown will expose the fragile foundations of California’s alleged prosperity, and blast it to smithereens.
Before COVID-19 came along, California had the highest rate of poverty and nearly the highest income inequality in America. It had the highest cost-of-living and some of the highest taxes. It had crumbling infrastructure, failing schools, devastating wildfires caused by negligence, avoidable shortages of water and electricity, a housing industrydestroyed by overregulation, and an explosion of the homeless—people who could be helped if it weren’t for the toxic progressive combination of misguided compassion and rampant corruption.
All of these problems will be worse when people are allowed back on the streets. The homeless encampments, unregulated and not subject to the pandemic mandates affecting everyone else, will have become permanent. Small business owners everywhere will survey the financial wreckage, and move elsewhere. Tech companies, their bubble valuations topped out, will not be sufficient sources of tax revenue to make up for the imploding tallies from everyone else. The only thing standing between state and local government agencies and financial catastrophe will be a federal bailout.
Newsom is more than just an incompetent, hypocritical, corrupt governor. He exemplifies the entire fraud that constitutes the Democratic Party in California.
California’s voters are at a tipping point. Newsom’s polling numbers, still high back in September and October, were mostly just a reflection of an anti-Trump electorate being supportive of anything that seemed to defy Trump. When mismanaged and neglected forests burned down half the state, and Trump said Californians needed to revive the timber industry, Newsom instead signed an executive order requiring electric cars, and California’s anti-Trump voters cheered. When COVID-19 struck, and Trump said we must be careful not to let the cure become worse than the disease, Newsom instead imposed a statewide lockdown, and California’s anti-Trump voters cheered again.
The problem with all this anti-Trump enthusiasm in California is that it only buys time for Newsom. In the recent election, with votes still being counted, Californians edged out Texas to cast the most ballots of any state in America—5.9 million so far—for President Trump. And in this high-turnout election, Trump even improved his percentage performance, rising from 31.6 percent in 2016 to 34.2 percent in 2020.
It’s a safe bet that every one of those Californians are ready to throw out Newsom and every other Democratic lawmaker. In fact, the ongoing populist movement to recall Newsom, fresh on the heels of a 120-day extension up to March 17 to gather signatures on a recall petition, has a very good chance of making him fight for his political life in a special recall election in the spring of 2021. And while Trump voters provide ample prospects to sign these recall petitions, the ranks of Californians who’ve had enough of Newsom are growing.
The Hypocrisy of the Party of the Rich
The apparent perpetual nature and increasing severity of what amounts to martial law are driving voters away from Newsom, a process exacerbated by Newsom himself, when he failed to comply with his own mandates. In a faux pasthat will go down in history, on November 10 Newsom and his wife joined at least 10 other people, sans masks, for a dinner paid for by lobbyists at the French Laundry in Napa County, one of the most expensive restaurants in the United States.
Newsom is going to have a hard time talking his way out of this. The hypocrisy of a man who built his image on his aggressive mandates to cope with the pandemic; the brazen display of privilege, lobbyist patronage, and stupefying wealth at this elite restaurant while small business owners, including restaurateurs, have no privilege, have no customer patronage, and must helplessly watch a lifetime of hard-earned wealth slip away rightly enrages many Californians.
Newsom’s initial response? “I should have modeled better behavior.”
Californians, whether they’re Left, Right or centrists, like most people everywhere, dislike hypocrisy. The Democratic litany, which claims Republicans are the party of the wealthy, is about to be broken, and Newsom’s hypocrisy is helping that along. While the vast majority of Californian parents are watching their children try to learn while being locked out of their public schools for nearly a year, Newsom’s children go to a private school, where attending classes was never seriously disrupted.
This reality, that the wealthy are exempt from the consequences of curfews and lockdowns, and these same wealthy are providing the backing and the agenda for the Democratic Party, is a ticking time bomb. Republicans already understand this. Republicans understand that their party is now the party of the worker. And every time a Democratic politician slips up—like Newsom with his dinner, or Pelosi with her two freezers filled with $12-a-pint ice cream—more voters realize that identity politics and environmentalist panic is a smoke screen, a con job, a way to get them to keep voting for the party of the rich.
Ultimately, when Californians emerge from their “dark winter” and try to resume their lives, they are going to have less tolerance than ever for the rhetoric of the Left. For example, compassion for the homeless is going to wear thin when your business is ruined and your bank is foreclosing on your mortgage, and meanwhile, thousands of homeless people took over the streets where you live and trashed them. They’re stoned out of their minds and shitting on the sidewalks.
And what is the answer? Round them up, put them in tent shelters in inexpensive parts of town? Get them off drugs? Dry them out? Help them? No. Of course not. Democrats will propose to spend additional billions to give them free housing on the beach at a cost of between $500,000 and $1 million per unit, and not even require them to stop using methamphetamine.
Of course they’re homeless and high all the time. Democrats reward them for it.
Similarly, next summer, when another 4 million acres of forest burn in California, and burned out homeowners can’t get fire insurance unless they move into a city where, thanks to overregulation, it costs $1 million to buy a bungalow with a backyard so small you can’t even set up a swing for your kids, Democrats will claim that the timber industry is the problem instead of recognizing it as the solution, and that absurdity will finally be heard for what it is: elitist, quasi-communist, clueless, baseless, misanthropic, opportunistic bullshit.
In every area of public policy, the progressive fraud that constitutes the Democratic Party, led by Gavin Newsom, will be exposed as threadbare posturing, designed to make the rich even richer, while everyone else gets broken financially and herded into subsidized hovels to save the earth and foster “equity.”
But perhaps the most egregious crime of the Democrats, inviting the biggest backlash, will be the performance of California’s public schools.
Returning to the classroom after being almost completely abandoned by teachers who never missed a month of pay despite not having to do much teaching, parents will demand a return to education fundamentals. They will demand a return to classroom discipline and teacher accountability. Who knows, maybe they will even demand school vouchers, to break the Democratic union monopoly that’s turned public education in California into a cruel joke.
One may go on and on. How many of California’s Latinos, who voted for Trump in record numbers, are going to stay loyal to Democrats, led by the likes of Newsom—white as snow and filthy rich—who have decided, without asking, that their ethnic group is no longer known as “Latinos,” but is now “Latinx,” pronounced “Latin-Ex.” Exactly who among the Democrats thought this act of cultural imperialism would be welcomed by Latinos? They’re in for a rude shock, and it’s about time.
There is a seismic wave building in California. It’s still far away, but it’s coming in with the tide. And when it reaches the shore, it is going to sweep away everything in its path. Most definitely including Gavin Newsom, and his rotten, corrupt, wealthy, dirty, grasping, lying, worthless party.
This article originally appeared on the website American Greatness.
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Edward Ring is a contributing editor and senior fellow with the California Policy Center, which he co-founded in 2013 and served as its first president. He is also a senior fellow with the Center for American Greatness, and a regular contributor to the California Globe. His work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Economist, Forbes, and other media outlets.
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