EDITOR: I’ve been a proponent of California secession for years — but only if we were to exit as presently constituted (“California excels as the Big Blue Bastion,” Editorial, Saturday). And I’d encourage Oregon, Washington and Hawaii to go with us.
I’ve come to see the U.S. as an artificial union that pays very little heed to our state, despite our enormous economic clout.
The last time I checked, the least-populated 22 or 23 states have fewer people combined than California. And a total of 44 or 46 senators to our two. And they skew the Electoral College.
Too, many of those states are unnecessarily small. Do we really need two Dakotas? Is there any real difference between Nebraska, Iowa and Kansas? The same goes for Arkansas and Oklahoma.
I don’t think the concept or the viability of our national “union” can be defended any longer. It’s certainly not governable.
My new country of Pacifica would be a formidable entity with a highly diverse population, robust economic dynamism and unmatched tourism appeal. Perhaps most important, its voters — freed from the crippling anachronism of the Electoral College — finally would have a real voice in how their country would be governed.
Gouging law impacts
EDITOR: I have had a rental house in northwest Santa Rosa for the past 28 years. When I rent, I set the starting price at the going rate. Afterward, I increase the rent very slowly, if at all, so that it falls well below the going rate. This encourages low turnover and keeps the tenants happy. As a result, I am only on my fourth tenant. Currently, I am charging $600-$800 below the normal pre-fire rates of similar homes.
My tenants just gave notice that they are leaving to buy their own home, so this would be a good time to modernize the house a bit and set the rent to the normal pre-fire rate. But the price gouging law doesn’t have an exemption for me, so I am forced to rent well below market rate again.
As a result, I may take my sweet time fixing up the house and keep it off the market until this emergency law expires in December. Unfortunately, they already have extended the deadline twice, and I am afraid they may do it again. This doesn’t seem fair, and it doesn’t help the availability of housing stock.
The real vulgarity
EDITOR: So the White House Correspondents’ Association dinner should be ended because the comedy was too vulgar (“It’s past time to end this annual DC spectacle,” Editorial, May 1)? Well, here’s some advice: When the media runs a story about the dinner, close your eyes, change the channel or stick your fingers in your ears and say, “Na-na-na-na-na, I can’t heart you” until the story ends.
That doesn’t work when it comes to the burning cesspool called the Trump presidency because, unlike the correspondents’ dinner, it impacts our lives every day, in every way. The pain inflicted by a tasteless joke at the dinner occurs once a year, lasts seconds and means nothing in the real world. But the lies, profanities, obfuscations, Twitter tantrums, insults, bullying and half-baked malarkey that passes for national policy make a real impact on everyone now and forever.