I Love ‘Newsom at Noon,’ but It Needs a New Star

Let Nonpartisan Scientists and Doctors Lead the State’s Daily COVID-19 Briefings

Dear Governor,

Your lunchtime COVID-19 briefings—“Newsom at Noon”—are must-see TV.

No California governor has ever had such a regular, closely observed platform, and you are making the most of it. Your memory, your command of policy and operational detail, and your rambling verbal dexterity, especially with the long words you favor (do you ever stop to breathe?), are almost superhuman. With these briefings, you are giving California’s most preeminent polysyllabic performance since Julie Andrews sang “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” for Disney’s Mary Poppins.

Your skilled delivery of so much epidemiological data and so many …

Now Is the Time for California to Think Big, Again | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Now Is the Time for California to Think Big, Again

Will the State Use This Moment to Be Ambitious—Or Shrink Back Into Its Old Habit of Budget Cuts?

Coronavirus is forcing Californians to isolate themselves. But it has brought us together in one big way: by fusing all of our biggest problems into one colossal crisis.

That crisis could …

Canceling School for COVID-19 Cheats California’s Kids | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Canceling School for COVID-19 Cheats California’s Kids

When This Epidemic Ends, Schools Should Make Up the 50 Days of Instruction Our Kids Are Missing Now

Not one day.

Our kids should not lose one day of school, not a single day of instruction, to the coronavirus.

Let me be clear: I’m not arguing against closing schools right …

Meet the Not-At-All-Human Multi-Billionaire Who Is Supposed to Save California | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Meet the Not-At-All-Human Multi-Billionaire Who Is Supposed to Save California

The State's Rainy Day Fund Has Never Been Tapped—But That’s About to Change

I’m ready for my close-up, Ms. Gerwig!

OK, as a budget fund without acting credits, I shouldn’t expect Greta Gerwig to put me in her next film—even if both she and …

Both Democrats and Republicans Love ‘Opportunity Zones’— and That’s a Bad Sign | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Both Democrats and Republicans Love ‘Opportunity Zones’—and That’s a Bad Sign

The Policy Delivers Tax Breaks to Wealthy Political Donors but Little to California’s Struggling Communities

Who says California opposes everything the Trump administration does? Our state’s leaders are frantically embracing at least one lousy presidential idea: “opportunity zones.”

Opportunity zones is the term for the …

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

Gavin, screw up. Please.

Make mistakes. Big ones. Because the state you’re about to start running needs more screw-ups.

The transition now taking place in the California governor’s office feels both historic …