David Dayen is a writer, comedian and TV/film editor based in Santa Monica. He is an elected member of the Democratic State Central Committee from the 41st Assembly District. He blogs on state and national politics at FireDogLake. Follow him on Twitter @ddayen.


California Is Not Like Greece; Greece Is Like California


By now, political observers have grown tired of the facile comparisons between the United States and Greece (they have a debt; we have a debt; exactly the same!). And that comparison is even more pronounced here in California, where I think it was part of the job description for our half-dozen remaining columnists to draw a parallel between the state’s budget woes and that of the European nation. Of course, these played out along the familiar lines (for high Broderist columnists) of “runaway spending” and “overwhelming debt.”

Now, it’s not going to surprise anyone that these columnists know nothing about Greece. Because if you actually study what got them into their debt problems, you’d find that spending is a lesser concern. The Center for American Progress report on Greece shows that their problems are more on the revenue side of the equation.