The feds own 45% of California, over 40 million acres, an area larger than the state of Florida. Under the Reagan Initiative title to this land (excluding parks, Indian reservations, and active military installations) would be transferred to the State, with the feds retaining a beneficial interest to a portion of the proceeds of its eventual development, if any.
The Democratic Party of California is controlled by environmental extremists, the coastal elites. Under their rule, very little development will take place on this land. The political leadership of Mexican-American Californians(Chicanos) are indispensable to the Democrats. They provide the votes. If Chicanos defected to the Republicans, the Democrats are in the minority.
A Chicano-Republican alliance is possible. Politicians like George Radanovich, Devin Nunes and David Valadao have proven it. Under their leadership, a new statewide majority coalition can be formed. Republicans and Chicanos want economic expansion. Speaking as a blanco Republican, I want Chicanos to make $30 an hour, or more. I want them to prosper. They do the work, and they should get paid a living wage.
If it could be formed, this alliance could develop California’s resources, producing enough wealth to make everybody happy. The potential is there. There is a very long list. Where to begin?
Oil. L.A. was built on it. Before oil, L.A. had a population of 8,000. Development of the Los Angeles field in the early 1890’s, along with fields in Ventura and the San Joaquin, resulted in California producing 22% of the world’s oil by 1910. This oil is a feature of one of the largest hydrocarbon deposits in North America, the Monterey Shale formation. It’s an extremely complicated geological structure. It’s unclear if the tight oil contained there can be extracted economically. Fracking makes it theoretically possible. You have to turn the oil guys loose, and let them figure it out. It’s possible a different kind of fracking, using chemicals alone, might do the trick. A Republican-Chicano political alliance would allow this to happen. If it worked, a whole lot of Chicanos would be making more money than they ever thought possible. In case you haven’t noticed, there’s big money in oil.
There’s lot of other wealth on that 40 million acres. Logging, mining, real estate development and agriculture for openers. That wealth will provide the money for a massive, and long overdue, expansion in California’s infrastructure: dams, highways, ports — the list goes on and on. Expanding and improving the infrastructure will mean jobs, lots and lots of good paying jobs — and Chicanos will get their full share.
That’s the vision. Politics is all that prevents it from happening. And California is blessed with leaders like Radanovich, Nunes and Valadao who understand the politics of this state. These men know Chicanos far better than I do. And they are trusted. They can tell this story to the Chicanos, in their own language, and be believed. They’ve proven that.
When I moved back to California fourteen years ago I tried to figure out the politics here. It looked pretty hopeless. We were a deep blue one party state, and no Republican had a prayer. I don’t believe demography is destiny, but I couldn’t come up with any ideas to counter the obvious demographic trends. I gave up on California, and didn’t think about it. Besides, I was an Alaskan, not a Californian. Es no mi problemo.
I was wrong, flat wrong. I enjoy working on the Reagan Project a great deal. But, for fun, there’s nothing like working on a political campaign. Nunes for Senate, Radanovich for Governor.
I’ve got a lot to look forward to.