The College Fix (link): If UC Berkeley economists are really opposed to income inequality and are concerned about low-paid workers, they might consider sharing some of their compensation with the teaching assistants, graders, readers and administrative staff at the bottom of Cal’s income distribution.
Several UC Berkeley economics professors who support “income inequality” research each earn more than $300,000 a year, putting them in the top 2 percent of the public university’s salary distribution, according to a recent report by a nonpartisan California think tank.
The report pointed out that the prominent scholars leading or advising the Cal Berkeley Center for Equitable Growth (link) are richly compensated as professors, even as the center seeks to research ways to create economic growth that is “fairly shared,” the center’s website states.
But the California Policy Center report (link), using 2014 data from the state’s public records, found Cal’s equitable growth center’s director, economics Professor Emmanuel Saez, earned an annual salary of just under $350,000.
The center’s three advisory board members – all economics professors – made similar amounts: Professor David Card made $336,367 in 2014; Professor Gerard Roland took in $304,608; and Professor Alan Auerbach earned $291,782. That’s not even including their pensions — equal to 2.5 percent times their final average salary times the number of years employed.
Town Hall: Will California Ever Thrive Again? (link) - There was more of the same old, same old California news recently. Some 62 percent of state roads have been rated poor or mediocre. There were more predictions of huge cost overruns and yearly losses on high-speed rail -- before the first mile of track has been laid. One-third of Bay Area residents were polled as hoping to leave the area soon.
Such pessimism is daily fare, and for good reason.
The basket of California state taxes -- sales, income and gasoline -- rates among the highest in the U.S. Yet California roads and K-12 education rank near the bottom.
After years of drought, California has not built a single new reservoir. Instead, scarce fresh aqueduct water is still being diverted to sea. Thousands of rural central California homes, in Dust Bowl fashion, have been abandoned due to a sinking aquifer and dry wells.
One in three American welfare recipients resides in California. Almost a quarter of the state population lives below or near the poverty line. Yet the state's gas and electricity prices are among the nation's highest.
One in four state residents was not born in the U.S. Current state-funded pension programs are not sustainable.
Public health costs have soared as one-third of California residents admitted to state hospitals for any causes suffer from diabetes, a sometimes-lethal disease often predicated on poor diet, lack of exercise and excessive weight.
Nearly half of all traffic accidents in the Los Angeles area are classified as hit-and-run collisions.
Grass-roots voter pushbacks are seen as pointless. Progressive state and federal courts have overturned a multitude of reform measures of the last 20 years that had passed with ample majorities
In impoverished central California towns such as Mendota, where thousands of acres were idled due to water cutoffs, once-busy farmworkers live in shacks. But even in opulent San Francisco, the sidewalks full of homeless people do not look much different.
What caused the California paradise to squander its rich natural inheritance?
Last week we asked if the Mountain Views News was in the tank for Michael Antonovich - After all, 3 articles about the same guy, and all in the same edition mind you, might be seen as a kind of leaning in for this termed out career pol now running for a California State Senate seat. This week? Apparently The MVN believes Antonovich was the star attraction at last Monday's 4th of July parade.