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California Burnin’ — a Warning Against One-Party Rule

California Burnin’ — a Warning Against One-Party Rule

A firefighter monitors a controlled burn while fighting the Dolan Fire near Jolon, California, U.S., on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2020. The wildfire burning in the rugged mountains of California’s Big Sur coastline has burned more than 119,488 acres as of Tuesday and is 40% contained, according to the U.S. Forest Service.
A firefighter monitors a controlled burn while fighting the Dolan Fire near Jolon, California, U.S., on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2020. The wildfire burning in the rugged mountains of California’s Big Sur coastline has burned more than 119,488 acres as of Tuesday and is 40% contained, according to the U.S. Forest Service. (Photographer: Bloomberg/Bloomberg)

By Niall Ferguson | BloombergSeptember 21, 2020 at 1:21 p.m. PDT

“California, folks, is America fast forward.” Thus Governor Gavin Newsom, hoarsely, amid brown smoke at the North Complex Fire on Sept. 11. “What we’re experiencing right here is coming to a community all across the United States of America … unless we get our act together on climate change.”

I was with him all the way until he said the words “on climate change.”

As my Hoover Institution colleague Victor Davis Hanson put it last month, California is “the progressive model of the future: a once-innovative, rich state that is now a civilization in near ruins. The nation should watch us this election year and learn of its possible future.”

Let’s start with the fires. So far this year, they have torched more than five times as much land as the average of the previous 33 years, killing 25 people and forcing about 100,000 people from their homes. At one point, three of the largest fires in the state’s history were burning simultaneously in a ring around the San Francisco Bay Area. According to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or CAL FIRE, of the 10 largest fires since 1970, five broke out this year. Nine out of 10 have occurred since 2012.AD

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