Texas vs. California: What smug Fresno Bee doesn’t mention

Feb. 7, 2013

By Chris Reed

The war of words between Gov. Jerry Brown and his Texas counterpart, Rick Perry, over California’s business climate has led to the usual snide comments about the Lone Star State from the media annex of the Democratic establishment. The Fresno Bee’s editorial page comments are typical:

“Poor Texas. With its high dropout rate, lack of health insurance coverage, and wide economic disparities, the Lone Star State appears to be desperate, or least its governor is.

“How else to explain Gov. Rick Perry’s radio ads attempting to lure businesses from California?

“‘Building a business is tough, but I hear building a business in California is next to impossible,’ Perry says in the ad. ‘This is Texas Gov. Rick Perry, and I have a message for California businesses: Come check out Texas.’

“Yes, come check out Texas. Check out a state that ranks last in the percentage of its population with high school diplomas. Come check out a state that is last in mental health expenditures and workers’ compensation coverage. Come check out a state that ranks first in the number of executions, first in the number of uninsured, first in the amount of carbon dioxide emitted and first in the amount of toxic chemicals released into water.”

But now, as Paul Harvey would say, the rest of the story, courtesy of California lawmaker turned Texas think tanker Chuck DeVore. He destroys the idea that schools are inferior and poverty is higher in his new state:

“While California has more bureaucrats, Texas has 17 percent more teachers, with 295 education employees per 10,000 people, compared to California’s 252.

“The two states’ educational outcomes reflect this disparity. If we compare national test scores in math, science, and reading for the fourth and eighth grades among four basic ethnic and racial categories — all students, whites, Hispanics, and African-Americans — Texas beats California in every category, and by a substantial margin. In fact, Texas schools perform consistently above the national average across categories of age, race, and subject matter, while California schools perform well below the national average. …

“While California seeks more ways to tax success, it excels at subsidizing poverty. The percentage of households receiving public assistance in California was 3.7 percent in 2009, double Texas’s rate of 1.8 percent. Almost one-third of all Americans on welfare reside in California.”

Back to you, Fresno Bee. More snark! Less filling!

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