June 24, 2024 #1 Local News, Information and Event Source for the Century City/Westwood areas.

Newsom Sees Huge Changes

By Tom Elias, Mirror Columnist| One in a series of interviews with significant candidates for governor of California.

Picture a California where it’s illegal to drive on freeways, now populated instead by layer upon layer of robotic drones. A California where new housing is mostly placed near rapid transit and bus stops and people actually do shift from their cars onto trains and buses. A California where high speed rail enables home ownership in remote locations for many thousands who can’t afford to buy now. A California where self-guided drone taxis are common.

Gavin Newsom, the state’s Democratic lieutenant governor and the former mayor of San Francisco, sees all this and much more change in California’s not so distant future.

Sitting with him can feel a lot like talking with Alvin Toffler in 1970. Back then, the futurist in a pre-Internet time forecast a long era of very fast change that could drive some people crazy, a worldwide information-based economy, chatrooms and devises that would remind people of their appointments. “Future Shock,” Toffler called his book covering these subjects and more.

“Mobility in California will change radically,” said Newsom, the leader so far in every poll on the governor’s race. “We can have automated vehicles that interact with other new technologies like the Hyperloop and other things like flying drone taxis, which are being tested in Dubai right now. All these things can interact with high speed rail very well.”

Newsom believes California’s bullet train, now under constant attack even as construction continues in the Central Valley, will be built out. “We need to finish the first segment, from Bakersfield to San Francisco. Get that done and we might be able to draw private investment and more federal money to finish the line,” he said. “I think we’ll see huge prosperity along the route between the Central Valley and the Silicon Valley. But we do need to prove ourselves.”

How about another statewide vote on the project, as some high speed rail opponents demand? “That train has left the station,” he said.

Newsom brings more to an interview than high-tech razzle-dazzle talk. Among his first acts as governor, he said, would be to change the state budget to promote much more pre-natal and early-childhood care. “I’m profoundly interested in this and it’s very underfunded,” Newsom said. “This is so important because that’s when most of human brain development takes place.”

Newsom also wants companies to do more for contract workers who get few benefits as they move from firm to firm and project to project in today’s economy. He supports a recent state Supreme Court decision calling for companies to give those mobile workers more benefits, saying “Businesses need to do something for their employees’ future.

“There is no silver bullet that will wholly solve the displacement from future technology, but the right solutions can help ease the transition and protect the workers most vulnerable…to automation,” he said. “It’s the job of the next governor to get ahead of this disruption and smooth that transition.”

The candidate also pledges fiscal discipline like what outgoing Gov. Jerry Brown has imposed. “We don’t need to be profligate to be progressive,” Newsom said.

He pledges to go after corruption in state government wherever he can, citing information technology procurement as a potentially fruitful area. “It’s manifest in many (state) requests for proposals that they are designed to be filled only by a single source,” Newsom said. “It’s an incumbent protection racket.”

Newsom also indicated he will look hard at agencies like the scandal-ridden Public Utilities Commission and the Energy Commission, which often favors large corporations over small operators in awarding grants.

Newsom indicates there will be no letup in California’s resistance to policies of President Trump if he’s elected. “I’m a big fan of (state attorney general) Xavier Becerra,” he said, “especially because of how quick he’s been to lead on this.” But he stopped short of endorsing Becerra.

It’s when he discusses the state’s possible future that Newsom seems most animated. “I’ve prided myself that we’ve always been able to look around the corner, from same sex marriage to marijuana legalization and gun safety. Californians should demand this kind of forward thinking from our next governor.”

   

Related Posts

Bob Rosenbloom, Esteemed Owner of Bob’s Market and Community Pillar, Passes at 92

April 9, 2024

April 9, 2024

Bob Rosenbloom, the cherished proprietor of Bob’s Market on Ocean Park Blvd. in Santa Monica, passed away at his residence...

Don’t Miss Your Last Chance to Experience CORTEO by Cirque du Soleil!

April 25, 2023

April 25, 2023

The Show’s Run At The Microsoft Theater Ends On April 30  Time is running out for fans of CORTEO by...

Regulation of Short-Term Rentals in LA Failing as Enforcement Drops Significantly

April 4, 2023

April 4, 2023

Better Neighbors LA report highlights the inadequacies of enforcement measures for short-term rentals in Los Angeles, calling for increased regulation...

Non-Profit Helping Relieve Financial Burden For Cancer Patients

November 16, 2022

November 16, 2022

Cancer Cartel is helping cancer patients focus on their treatment, not the financial stress of living with a diagnosis. Learn...

100 Miles of Bus-Only Lanes Coming to L.A in Five Years?

October 17, 2022

October 17, 2022

L.A’s public transportation network is known for being slow due to traffic congestion. A new motion by L.A. City Council...

How to Wisely Manage Your Finances After a Job Layoff

October 3, 2022

October 3, 2022

Being laid off can be difficult, both emotionally and financially. It is important to manage your finances wisely during this...

Union Members Protest UC Policies in Westwood

May 3, 2022

May 3, 2022

Westwood and Wilshire protest takes place April 26 By Dolores Quintana The intersection of Wilshire and Westwood was the site...

Kale of All Kinds

March 16, 2022

March 16, 2022

Today at the Santa Monica Farmers Market we explore three different kinds of Kale from Cole Family Farms..Video sponsored by...

Name Revealed for Alice Waters’s Westwood Restaurant

October 20, 2021

October 20, 2021

Westside Dining Scene October 21, 2021 By Dolores Quintana Esteemed chef Alice Waters’s upcoming Westwood restaurant’s and the name has...

Community Volunteer Patrol Program Brings Civilians New Insight Into Law Enforcement

October 19, 2021

October 19, 2021

The West LA Police Department has a community patrol program bridging the gap between civilians and law enforcement. Video brought...

Police Seek Man Wanted for Sexually Assaulting Sleeping UCLA Student

September 2, 2021

September 2, 2021

Police are searching for a man wanted for sexually assaulting a female UCLA student while she slept. According to the...

Final Weekend of Marina Drive-In Movie Summer Series With New Movies Added

August 28, 2021

August 28, 2021

WHERE: Marina del Rey Boat Launch Ramp, 13477 Fiji Way at Parking Lot #2 COST: $20 per vehicle, per movie...

UCLA Admits Most Accomplished Class in Its History

July 20, 2021

July 20, 2021

New freshman and transfer cohorts are also among university’s most ethnically diverse By Ricardo Vazquez | UCLA Newsroom UCLA has...

Heritage Museum Reopens with Unique Exhibition

June 24, 2021

June 24, 2021

The California Heritage Museum welcomes back visitors with a unique and stunning quilt exhibition, learn more in this video brought to...