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Jerry Brown’s California: An illustration from Melrose Avenue

Just shy of a year ago, I posted some pictures I took of empty storefronts on Melrose between Fairfax and La Brea.  Today, I chose just one block, this time west of Fairfax and found on the north side of the street (Melrose) between Edinburgh and Highland exactly as many empty storefronts as occupied ones:

If entrepreneurs weren’t vacating these stores, they could be paying taxes to the state of California, helping reduce it’s deficit while providing jobs for aspiring actors — and other Hollywood wannabes.

The very state policies which cause these enterprises to go belly-up account to a large degree for the state’s slumping revenues.  California has become one of the nation’s least-friendly states for small business.

As Jennifer Rubin puts it:

. . . unless you understand that California has the worst business climate in the country and its revenue projections turned out to be wildly over-optimistic. Reuters explains: “The deeper deficit forecast reflects the state’s uneven economic recovery: tax collections this year have fallen about $4 billion below projections, though many state legislators and economists had warned that the January revenue estimates were far too optimistic.”

And tax collections will continue to fall unless state legislators act to reduce the regulatory burden and adopt a more business-friendly tax structure. That alas does not seem to be on Governor Brown’s agenda.

Oh, and the south side of that block also has its share of vacant storefronts:

ADDENDUM: California gets an “F” for its tax code. And one thing Jerry Brown is proposing would only serve to raise taxes. The Democrat’s solution would only exacerbate the problem.



  1. This is what happens when you put Democrats in charge. To get a look of those storefronts 5 years from now, google pictures of Detroit.

    Comment by Bastiat Fan — May 14, 2012 @ 7:06 pm - May 14, 2012

  2. Remember when the gay and lesbian American dream meant living in California?

    Comment by Geena — May 14, 2012 @ 7:07 pm - May 14, 2012

  3. I anticipate the typical lefty rose-colored glasses response; “Look at the thriving business in ‘for lease’ signs.”

    Nancy Pelosi says unemployment checks are the best stimulus; by that measure, California’s economy must be booming.

    Comment by V the K — May 14, 2012 @ 7:10 pm - May 14, 2012

  4. Moonbeam wants to raise taxes “temporarily”:,0,1532582.story

    Temp taxes are never temporary. He’s spineless.

    Comment by Sebastian Shaw — May 14, 2012 @ 7:28 pm - May 14, 2012

  5. “2.Remember when the gay and lesbian American dream meant living in California?”

    Geena, at least LGBT’s still have, Key West, for vacations.

    Comment by Richard Bell — May 14, 2012 @ 8:09 pm - May 14, 2012

  6. Dan, it would be interesting to go back to the Melrose block and get an updated pic to see which, if any, of the empty stores-fronts from last year are now occupied..

    Comment by sonicfrog — May 14, 2012 @ 8:26 pm - May 14, 2012

  7. Sonic, good idea. When I drive down Melrose, I do try to look around. And a couple vacant storefronts seem to have found tenants while others, once occupied, have gone vacant.

    Comment by B. Daniel Blatt — May 14, 2012 @ 8:28 pm - May 14, 2012

  8. What ever happened to the proposed California law mandating the use of fitted bedsheets in hotels?

    Sounds like the Assembly has way too much time on its hands.

    Comment by SoCalRobert — May 14, 2012 @ 9:48 pm - May 14, 2012

  9. It’s a frightening and heartbreaking thing to see and oh, so unneccesary.

    Comment by AZ Mo in NYC — May 15, 2012 @ 3:13 am - May 15, 2012

  10. The democrats are killing the great state of California.. so heart breaking..

    Comment by Rhon — May 15, 2012 @ 4:08 pm - May 15, 2012

  11. […] Daniel Blatt gives us a look at how thoroughly California is screwing itself by being so unfriendly to […]

    Pingback by Must-Read Articles of the Week » The New Atlantean — May 16, 2012 @ 2:56 pm - May 16, 2012

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