Democrats Risk Blue-Collar Rebellion

Joel Kotkin
Editor of NewGeography.com and Presidential fellow in urban futures at Chapman University

If California is to change course and again become a place of opportunity, the impetus is likely to come not from the perennially shrinking Republican Party but from working-class and middle-class Democrats. This group, long quiescent, has emerged most notably in opposition to the state’s anti-global warming cap-and-trade policies, which will force up energy prices. […]

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To Fight Inequality, Blue States Need To Shift Focus To Blue-Collar Jobs

Joel Kotkin
Editor of NewGeography.com and Presidential fellow in urban futures at Chapman University

In the coming election, we will hear much, particularly from progressives, about inequality, poverty and racism. We already can see this in the pages of mainstream media, with increased calls for reparations for African-Americans, legalizing undocumented immigrants and a higher minimum wage. There’s no question that minorities’ economic wellbeing has deteriorated since the economy cratered […]

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Don’t Be So Dense About Housing

Joel Kotkin
Editor of NewGeography.com and Presidential fellow in urban futures at Chapman University

Southern California faces a crisis of confidence. A region that once imagined itself as a new model of urbanity – what the early 20th century minister and writer Dana Bartlett called “the better city” – is increasingly being told that, to succeed, it must abandon its old model and become something more akin to dense Eastern […]

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Growth, Not Redistribution the Cure for Income Inequality

Joel Kotkin
Editor of NewGeography.com and Presidential fellow in urban futures at Chapman University

Ever since the publication this spring of Thomas Piketty’s book “Capital in the 21st Century,” conservatives and much of the business press, such as the Financial Times, have been on a jihad to discredit the author and his findings about increased income inequality in Western societies. Some have even equated growing attacks on inequality with anti-Semitism, with at least […]

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One-Party Rule is No Party in California

Joel Kotkin
Editor of NewGeography.com and Presidential fellow in urban futures at Chapman University

Forty years ago, Mexico was a one-party dictatorship under the Partido Revolucionario Institucional, hobbled by slow growth, soaring inequality, endemic corruption and dead politics. California, in contrast, was considered a model American state, with a highly regarded Legislature, relatively clean politics, a competitive political process and a soaring economy. Today these roles are somewhat reversed, and not […]

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Energy Preferences to Play Big Role in November

Joel Kotkin
Editor of NewGeography.com and Presidential fellow in urban futures at Chapman University

The November election will be played out along all the usual social memes – from gay marriage, racism and immigration to the “war against women.” But what may determine the outcome revolves around one key economic issue: energy. This has all come to a boil now as President Obama has backed an Environmental Protection Agency effort […]

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California’s Choice – Growth or Decline

Joel Kotkin
Editor of NewGeography.com and Presidential fellow in urban futures at Chapman University

I’ve been friends with Charlie Sena for almost two decades. Charlie, a longtime entrepreneur, Democratic political operative and fundraiser for former Gov. Gray Davis, recently chided me about what he sees as my “negativity” about California and its future. My response was that, given its natural advantages, this region should not be in such a […]

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Watch What You Say, The New Liberal Power Elite Won’t Tolerate Dissent

Joel Kotkin
Editor of NewGeography.com and Presidential fellow in urban futures at Chapman University

In ways not seen since at least the McCarthy era, Americans are finding themselves increasingly constrained by a rising class—what I call the progressive Clerisy—that accepts no dissent from its basic tenets. Like the First Estate in pre-revolutionary France, the Clerisy increasingly exercises its power to constrain dissenting views, whether on politics, social attitudes or […]

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Inland California Needs to Get in the Zone

Joel Kotkin
Editor of NewGeography.com and Presidential fellow in urban futures at Chapman University

California’s dream is shrinking inexorably, and only radical steps can prevent the condition from becoming permanent. Compared with previous economic expansions, fewer state residents and communities are benefiting from this recovery, which has largely been restricted to the small coastal zone surrounding the Bay Area, as well as certain parts of western Los Angeles, Orange […]

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Pandering to the Minority Vote

Joel Kotkin
Editor of NewGeography.com and Presidential fellow in urban futures at Chapman University

As they approach what could be a troublesome election season, Democratic party strategists have targeted two issues – inequality and race – as their primary means to prevent another shellacking in the mid-terms. But given the growing dominance of wealthy and overwhelmingly white gentry liberals, the class issue could prove troublesome, particularly given the tepid performance of […]

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