California’s new social policies based on self-congratulation

Notorious for his hard-nosed play on the field, the great Chase Utley had this to say about his quiet demeanor off of it: “My father always told me if you’re good, let other people tell you that you’re good.”

Easy to say when you’re ripping off one of the most productive stretches by a second basemen in baseball history, but a good lesson nonetheless. Many politicians would do well to learn from it. While the nature of their job demands some level of self-promotion, too often that transitions into decision-making for that very purpose. Responsible service to one’s constituents is usurped by social policy platforms based on self-congratulation. The bankrupt state of California provides three recent examples.

First, Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, on a new bill that would make California a de facto sanctuary state for illegal aliens:

Today’s vote signals to the nation that California cannot afford to be another Arizona.

As if it is the job of politicians to “signal to the nation” their supposed moral superiority, instead of serving as caretakers to their constituents’ safety and financial well-being. The dangerous incentives created by this bill are ignored, and instead we have the same self-congratulatory hooey that accompanied the naive presumptuous of California’s earlier attempt to “take the lead” on climate change. Continue reading