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Californians vote wrongly

Reader Input
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Re: “California, sadly, not business-friendly,” by Grant Shaw (Reader Input, Jan. 5). Mr. Shaw’s pertinent letter begs the question: Why do we Californians choose lawmakers who, according to 500 CEOs, “create a state worst for doing business” for the seventh straight year in a row, a state “that nobody comes to to learn about job creation.” Why perpetuate a state that, as Mr. Shaw implies, suffocates business with excessive regulation, that requires years for construction permits which often wind up in courts? Worse yet, we create a state that the National Tax Foundation ranks the 49th worst in tax competitiveness — a ranking that drives business and jobs to other states. No wonder then, that in just the last 18 months, four Silicon Valley start-ups plan to open factories in Mississippi — thanks to a welcome mat extended by Gov. Haley Barbour. Said a financial officer of that state, “When we were competing, it was Ohio. There was never a mention of California.” Summing it up, Professor Williams Watkins of California’s Lutheran University describes our once Golden State thus, “California is something like a zombie state, not quite dead … but moving with no clear direction.” For this sorry state of affairs, we have no one to blame but ourselves. We continue to elect the wrong people. Bill Harder Sr., Auburn