I, the California Budget, Am Worried I Might Be Too Big

Before We Throw More Money at Our Problems, We Need to Redesign Our Broken Systems

Do you really think that bulking me up with your billions will solve California’s post-pandemic problems?

I, the California budget, am bigger than ever right now—more than $267 billion, according to Governor Newsom’s recent revision of me. And please don’t think I don’t appreciate being more swole than Schwarzenegger—I remember how lean and gaunt I got in the Great Recession. When the pandemic first hit, everyone, including me, thought I’d be much smaller by now.

Instead, I’m projected to have a $38 billion surplus. You might think that this would make me …

The Hidden Health Care Workers Keeping Hospitals Safe | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

The Hidden Health Care Workers Keeping Hospitals Safe

Meet the Infection Preventionists at the Front Lines of the Pandemic Battle

You’re usually still a little groggy when your pager goes off. You jolt out of bed, unsure what’s going to come next. Getting awakened for work at 2 a.m. is …

Why States Can Lead America Forward | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Why States Can Lead America Forward

Pursuing Progressive Policies on the State Level Can Move the Dial on Major Issues Like Citizenship, Immigration, and Health Care

American states, conventionally seen as threats to Americans’ constitutional rights, also can be powerful forces for protecting and extending rights in ways that benefit the whole country, said panelists at …

Why Today’s Social Revolutions Include Kale, Medical Care, and Help With Rent | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Why Today’s Social Revolutions Include Kale, Medical Care, and Help With Rent

In the Pandemic, Community Organizations Have Returned to Their Roots in Mutual Aid and Self-Determination

When I needed to donate a box of vegetables recently, I called a nonprofit in my neighborhood in Queens, New York, that organizes low-wage immigrant workers. As we arranged the …

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 …