I am sorry to say we are probably toast for another couple of generations at a minimum. We have elected people over the years who have ratcheted down the independence of the individual in support of the "masses" and all the good "intentions" those laws and regulations were to provide have created a numb business and job climate. Of course there are a few businesses that have flourished but they are specialized and not widespread. There is a group of specialized business in land use for instance. Every project needs environmental studies, traffic counts, biological reviews and Indian artifacts analysis. There are many more but a business person must spend many thousands of start-up dollars to study stuff which is not available to hire people for a long term job.
In Fax and Hounds magazine I read George Plescia's article about regulations. He said this about one poor business owner,
"An entrepreneur opening a car wash needs dozens of permits before he or she can wash a single car. Some of the permits are reasonable health and safety obligations, but requiring separate permits for every aspect of the business, from an underground tank monitoring plan to burglar alarms is costly, time-consuming and counterproductive."
It is my experience the government at all levels is simply composed of "money-grubbers" who are forced by the politicians to go after your money because they have diverted the money to social programs that are more sexy to the voters (they think). So, when the car wash fellow wants to fill a need in his community, he must pay for the privilege of spending his own hard earned dollars (for legal bribes) to even begin the paperwork. This is what we have become in California.
HERE is the full article. Apparently over 250 businesses have departed the state for other places this year alone. When one discounts the weather and a few "pretty" places to live (outside the urban messes of course), what the heck does our state offer? Highest taxes, most regulation and a pesty bureaucracy full of brownshirts? I have been informed and have read stories of regulators fanning out across the state to fine and otherwise "write-up" businesses large and small so the coffers of the state will be gaining some money. Beauty salons have been especially hit hard. These small businesses are a prime example of the zealous nature of government run amok in "fine" collection and regulation. And the shops are under the thumb of one of the 120 plus consumer agencies! I am a home builder and you should see all the crap we are governed by!
Of course we need some regulations regarding health and safety since there is always some person trying to game the populace but do we need such a "nanny state"? We may be way to late in trying to reign in the mess created by the nanny state politicians. Once a regulation or a law is passed it never goes away (along with death and taxes). It is harder to remove than a tick behind your ear and twice as painful. It has been my position that regulations never be instituted without the debate and approval of the people we elect. What they do and have always done is pass a law and place the terms or words "and needed implementing regulations by the agency" into the documents. We see the results all around us with this almost dictatorial power given to the CARB and the Water Boards.
California has great weather (but it is raining as I write this) and it has been my home all my life. I love the state but hate the the overly "good intentioned" people we have allowed to govern us. We will not see an improvement in our fortunes until we remove the yoke of "good intentions" from our necks. How many permits does it take to open a car wash? As many as will fill the coffers of the government apparently. The mindset of regulators needs to change from the big lie of "I am here from the government and I am here to help" to actually leaving us alone for a while. Never gonna be in reality. Too bad for California my once great "golden goose" of a state.