Jurisdictional Competition Update - California vs. Texas

Comments Off on Jurisdictional Competition Update - California vs. Texas
Jurisdictional Competition Update - California vs. Texas

Since 1930, the United States has experienced an inexorable drift toward centralization and uniformity.  That made perfect sense because the Mass Production Paradigm required a mass consumer market based on mass media and mass distribution.  In response, the U.S. transformed from federation of fifty sovereign states to a “centralized nation-state” like France, Japan, or the UK.   

But now, the Digital Revolution is reducing our reliance on economies scale and uniformity. Suddenly, there is a growing rationale for the various parts of the country to reclaim their sovereignty and try alternative solutions. No longer does it make sense for states as different as Oregon and Utah or Alabama and Massachusetts to live under a one-size-fits-all set of policies imposed from Washington.

As a result, America has entered a period of intense “jurisdictional competition” pitting the policies and practice of “Blue America” against those of “Red America.”  And, if the last five years has taught us anything, it’s that this competition will intensify, before it diminishes.

Some see this as “bad” thing.  However, it gives people with differing demography, values, and priorities an opportunity to live and work in an environment that suits them. 

More importantly, it gives humanity an opportunity to empirically test whether a specific set of policies, practices and values can deliver promised results.  No longer do we have to simply accept pronouncements about the theories of Marx, Hayek, Keynes or Friedman; we can test them 

Since World War II, we’ve seen experiments play out in places as diverse as North and South Korea, East and West Germany, Venezuela and Chile, or Cuba and Puerto Rico.  But, there is no more useful and powerful test than the “heavy weight championship” being fought between mega-states, Texas and California.

Both states have abundant natural resources, talented populations, major seaports, and huge cities. Both have experienced a major influx of immigrants, especially from Mexico.  And both have economies that would rank them among the largest 20 countries of the world. 

However, California and Texas are as different in terms of values and priorities as their definitive politicians, Jerry Brown and Ted Cruz, respectively.  Those differences have led to dramatically divergent polices that touch everything from taxation to immigration to abortion to the environment.  And these policies ultimately affect everything from educational outcomes to job growth to poverty rates.  

A primary challenge of every civilization is to ensure that, to the extent possible, everyone has an opportunity to achieve an acceptable standard of living...

To continue reading, become a paid subscriber for full access.
Already a Trends Magazine subscriber? Login for full access now.

Subscribe for as low as $195/year

  • Get 12 months of Trends that will impact your business and your life
  • Gain access to the entire Trends Research Library
  • Optional Trends monthly CDs in addition to your On-Line access
  • Receive our exclusive "Trends Investor Forecast 2015" as a free online gift
  • If you do not like what you see, you can cancel anytime and receive a 100% full refund