California’s Elected Sheriffs Are Accountable to No One—And That’s a Problem

Rooted in Archaic British Laws, County Law Enforcement Is Plagued by Scandals

The county sheriff is the problem child among California elected officials. No office is less accountable, or more reliable in producing scandal.

Once elected, sheriffs in all 58 counties have power over jails and policing, and act pretty much as they please. When sheriffs do wrong, there is little that Californians can do to stop them. Under our state’s structure, a sheriff in California can’t really be fired. And those most liable to complain about a sheriff—inmates and those accused of crimes—have trouble gaining the public’s ear, let alone its sympathy.

You …

For California’s New Governor, Big Mistakes Will Lead to Greatness

Gavin Newsom Can’t Make Meaningful Progress on Health Care or Housing Without an Appetite for Risk

“I’ll be watching from the ranch… but I’m only an hour from Sacramento, so Gavin, do not screw up.” — Gov. Jerry Brown, November 5, 2018

Gavin, screw up. Please.

Make mistakes. …

From Bethlehem to Palm Springs, Christmas Belongs in the Desert

During the Holiday Season, Southern California’s Coachella Valley Becomes a Place of Rebirth

If you’re looking for the quintessential Christmas experience, there’s only one place you should go: the Southern California desert.

The Coachella Valley is the Golden State’s very own Yuletide capital—which …

California Needs Frank Capra to Rewrite Its Story

The Legendary Film Director Knew That the Golden State Isn’t About Rich Moguls, but About the Struggles and Triumphs of Ordinary People

The California story needs a remake.

Get me Capra!

Frank—legendary director of films including It Happened One Night to It’s a Wonderful Life—has been dead since 1991, you say? No matter! Just …

Can a Troubled Bridge Show California How to Avoid Big Errors?

The Bay Bridge’s New East Span Proves Why Megaprojects Must Be Both Transformational and Functional

How do you learn from a really big mistake?

Walk across it.

Which is why I recently found myself putting on a windbreaker and beginning a long, slow walk across the east …