The Sun Always Shines on the California Empire

The Golden State, Not the U.S., Is the Worthiest Successor to Britain’s Global Supremacy

The sun has set on the British Empire. Its successor, America, is showing signs of decline. But one empire still has plenty of battery life: California.

This is true even in the capital of the old empire. When I visited London last week, the newspapers were full of stories about the United Kingdom pulling the plug on its global ambitions and voting to leave the European Union in a June referendum. But what caught my eye as I walked and took public transportation around London were the garrisons of the …

No City Is Immune From an Identity Crisis

Beware, Hollywood and Silicon Valley: If Bakersfield Can Lose Its Signature Industry, So Can You

Can you imagine Southern California without Hollywood? Or the Bay Area without Silicon Valley?

No? History suggests that the identities of cities and regions are more fragile, and their central industries …

Why Has Google Stopped Buying ‘Unicorns’?

Booming Tech Startups Have Just Gotten Too Expensive

How do you grow the most innovative company of tomorrow? Is it better to grow the business “organically” from within, or is it better to continually acquire outside companies (along …

Why Californians Are Such Suckers for Superheroes

From Onscreen Icons to Tech Stars, the State's Obsession With Larger-Than-Life Characters Is a Way to Avoid Inconvenient Truths

California faces a peculiar overpopulation problem: We have too many superheroes.

Missed this news in The Daily Planet? Fear not—your ignorance is understandable. California is not as closely associated with …

Let’s Play the Drought Blame Game

There Are Plenty of Guilty Parties During This Dry Spell—Even the Cows are Moo-ches

I hate to play the blame game, but let’s face facts: This drought is all your fault.

You are watering outdoors too much. You kept your lawn when you should have …

My Grandma’s Los Altos Garage Launched a Tech Revolution

Tourists Flock to the Birthplace of Apple Computers. But to Me, the Ranch-Style House Was a Place to Eat Peanut Butter and Watch Cartoons.

My grandma’s house is your typical white, one-story house in the suburbs of the Silicon Valley—it has rustic red brick accents, baby blue trim, and a perfectly manicured front lawn. …