The Great Red North of California: where locals are likely to receive more government aid than in the Bay Area

The New York Times has a feature titled “The Great Red North of California” in this morning’s edition: “A fifth of the state in area, but closer to Texas politically.”

It notes, however:

•A fifth of the state’s land mass but only 3 percent of its population.

•”Despite a go-it-alone ethos, residents of the 13 counties in the northern bloc (who voted for Trump) are much more likely to receive government medical assistance than those in the Bay Area. In the north, 31 percent take part in Medi-Cal, while the Bay Area rate is 19 percent and California’s overall figure is 28 percent.

•LaMalfa is a shill for the region in the article, blaming regulation for the north state’s woes.

•Mark Baird, the State of Jefferson proponent, is a “former airline pilot,” the article reports, adding “Mr. Baird complains of restrictions on the types of guns he can own. ‘It’s tyranny by the majority.’

After reading Baird’s comments, I figured I was glad I never was a passenger when Baird was in the cockpit.

The article is here.

Author: jeffpelline

Jeff Pelline is a veteran editor and award-winning journalist - in print and online. He is publisher of Sierra FoodWineArt magazine and its website Jeff covered business and technology for The San Francisco Chronicle for years, was a founding editor and Editor of CNET News, and was Editor of The Union, a 145-year-old newspaper in Grass Valley. Jeff has a bachelor's degree from UC Berkeley and a master's from Northwestern University. His hobbies include sailing and trout fishing.

22 thoughts on “The Great Red North of California: where locals are likely to receive more government aid than in the Bay Area”

  1. LaMalfa “half serious?”: ” Let’s introduce some wolves into golden Gate Park, and the Santa Monica Pier”.
    Dips**t doesn’t quite cover it, November 2018, hopefully his last day to insult his constituents. –

  2. He obviously doesn’t represent our county, if judged by the town hall he conducted at the Fairgrounds. He certainly doesn’t mind the subsidies he gets from his rice fields, though. A good house-cleaning is needed and required soon.

  3. I remember when we were self-sufficient in the north. Timber, mining and grazing, small business and other endeavors were what made the area desirable. Then the government decided no mining, no timber and little grazing. In fact if you recall we used to get a large “in-lieu” check for having all that Federal land. That money went to roads and schools. When they took away the timber because of the spotted owl hoax, they changed the in-lieu to a yearly apporval in the budget. So they decided to retrain people in the Clinton years when they removed the resource based ecomony and it was just a form of welfare. So perhaps the NTY should have iunterviewed some other people than the pointy heads. All this eco friendly stuff forced the area into a tourist based economic model which pays little to the employees. Great for the tourists, bed for thpse living here.

    1. In most areas those USFS timber sales were subsidized by the Feds and sold at a loss. If the true cost of putting a sale out was included in the sale price the logging boom years you reminisce about would have looked much different.
      And cattle grazing on Federal land, what a joke.

  4. Todd,
    Nevada County no longer is part of the “Great Red North.” It is blue. Blue is for Clinton. See map on the link.

  5. I am in the middle of working on mapping many of the same socio-economic indicators in northern California and to be honest conditions are as bad as this article is implying.

    The numbers on idled workers, housing and energy burden, opioid prescriptions, AMI, transfer payments, etc. are staggering. The statistics are the same in California’s Central Valley and Inland Empire.

    The answer is not this brand of grievance politics that is easily captured by a mind set of intolerance that trades on racial and cultural alienation, it is the opposite, it is creating a pathway for economic and social mobility in rural regions of California and the rest of the nation, that makes them fuller participants in our economy.

    Grievance is taking the energy out of the room. The kinds of legislative action described in this article merely perpetuate the problem. They are a convenient foil for rural politicians allowing them to get elected as a permanent minority, but do nothing to lift the people in rural regions up and provide them with the tools they need to prosper.

    The real tragedy here is that rural residents are being betrayed by the very politicians that claim to be advancing their interests. Irrational demands from rural politicians for reversing the principle of ‘one person one vote’, firmly established by the 14th amendment, creates the rationale for urban politicians to disregard rational proposals from rural regions to improve conditions. It encourages a mind set in rural regions that nothing can be done short of a full on reform of the electoral system. Worse it is a quixotic waste of time….the windmill always wins.

    The fact that rural grievance politics gets caught up in race and culture paints rural residents as intolerant and prejudiced…meaning urban politicians are defending their constituents when they oppose rural initiatives. Because of that rural politicians are not working on the things that actually can improve conditions that I mentioned above. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard from urban representatives something akin to, “why should we help them they vote against our interests and our people.”

    We need a new rural deal in California, and much of America, but it has to be based on cooperation, on linking rural regions to urban economic prosperity, to creating new resource economies, to addressing the dearth of access to high-speed communications, on accessing national and global markets, on improving access to capital in rural regions, and on fostering innovation in rural economies. That is the stuff we should be working on.

  6. Thanks Steve. You have nailed it here: “The real tragedy here is that rural residents are being betrayed by the very politicians that claim to be advancing their interests. “

  7. Perhaps so but I really think the most important part is that in the end we have to do it ourselves and we can’t wait for politicians or the state to ‘get it.”

    We should be working on creating the solution instead of bitching about the past…which is what SOJ really is….a bunch of people bitching about how the new world done them wrong.

    1. I think those SOJ folks are all about fairness. They simply want their voice to be heard and laws enacted they like. When I was in the staff of Bernie in 1996 I got to see first hand the problems at the state level. And the urban areas could care less about you and me and the economies of the rural areas. It is all about representation, nothing more.

      1. We all want laws enacted that we like. The problem is that we have a political system that is oriented on majority rule. The solution for SOJ is the same for the rest of us…. stop whining about how unfair they are being treated and do something about it. The only problem is the current majority does not want the same laws as the SOJ people want. SOJ wants the right wing version of fairness…radical far out beliefs being given the same stature as main stream beliefs. That is not fairness.. it is tipping the scale toward radicalism by pretending it is on an equal footing, much like the one sided climate change issue where a minute portion of the population, the radical climate deniers, think their views deserve equal press. That is like saying pedophiles should have the same input in drafting sexual abuse laws as mental and physical healthcare and law enforcement personnel.

      2. I don’t think that is what the SOJ s about at all. If the state was run by Republicans and they had a “super majority” like the democrats do, you would be singing a different tune. If you look at the left’s reaction to the R’s in DC then perhaps you would admit it is the same. You feel Trump and the R’s of Congress are not listening and you want to impeach him. And you even want CalExit! So it all depends on whose “ox” is being gored.

      3. I’m working today, so I’m happy to read each comment and clear it. But I’m thinking to myself, why don’t you want to go outside and play? You are retired.

  8. Here’s a perfect example of the politics of resentment (from the article), making points with resentful constituents but accomplishing nothing.

    Mr. LaMalfa, who lives on a farm, says California’s urban denizens think of the rural areas as their “park,” and deplores what he describes as trophy legislation to protect animal species.

    “You have idealists from the cities who say, ‘Wouldn’t it be great to reintroduce wolves to rural California?’” Mr. LaMalfa said. He has a half-serious counterproposal: “Let’s introduce some wolves into Golden Gate Park and the Santa Monica Pier.”

    1. “You have idealists from the cities who say, ‘Wouldn’t it be great to reintroduce wolves to rural California?’”
      They are coming, they don’t need to be introduced. When they get here and have a breeding population they will need to be protected. It will be a great day when the wolf howl can be heard again in California.

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