Winners and Losers – December 18


Tim Anaya – Senior Director of Communications

Winner – Tesla, who makes their debut today on the S&P 500.  According to Reuters, “Elon Musk’s Tesla on Monday will become the most valuable company ever admitted to Wall Street’s main benchmark, accounting for over 1% of the index. The shares have surged over 60% since mid-November, when its debut in the S&P 500 was announced.”  But CEO Elon Musk could ultimately be a loser.  Despite his recent announcement that he has moved to Texas, expect California to enforce its complex tax laws to get as much as it can in capital gains taxes from Tesla’s successful S&P 500 debut.

Loser – The actors and crew members filming “Mission: Impossible 7” (do we really need a seventh movie in this franchise?) in Europe, who recently had to endure a crazy rant from star Tom Cruise over reports that they were breaking Covid-19 protocols.  Instead of “Mission: Impossible,” perhaps Tom’s next movie should be a remake of the classic TV series, “The Nanny.”

Rowena Itchon – Senior Vice President

Winner – Brayden Smith, 2-day Jeopardy winnings of $66,000.  Congratulations to Brayden, a Nevada policy intern.  We don’t know if he is a “free-market” policy intern, but heck, we have to root for our young colleague in the business.

Loser – Los Angelenos know that George Gascon, newly elected LA County District Attorney, is in office. He has ended cash bail, banned prosecutors from seeking enhanced prison sentences, and is soft on low level offenders.  “The new D.A. talks a good game, but his plans will do nothing but further victimize Los Angeles residents,” said a statement from the Los Angeles Police Protective League.

Kerry Jackson – Fellow, Center for California Reform

Winner: President Donald Trump. It’s unlikely that his election challenges will keep him in the White House, but the fact we have a coronavirus vaccine far earlier than most expected means he’s going out on top.

Loser: California Gov. Gavin Newsom. The backlash to his pandemic clampdown is growing and the initiative to recall him is now serious. He’ll be an even bigger loser if he doesn’t learn from his missteps.

McKenzie Richards – Development Associate

Winner: The Legacy of Abraham Lincoln. San Francisco’s Abraham Lincoln High School plans to change its name because the Great Emancipator supposedly did not demonstrate that “black lives mattered to him”. As such, the high school does not deserve the honor of his name in the first place. Lincoln’s legacy can continue to be preserved by those who recognize the inherent greatness in ending slavery.

Loser: President Trump’s cabinet member, Richard Grenell, lost the title of the first openly gay cabinet member as Pete Buttigieg, Joe Biden’s pick for the secretary of transportation, reappropriated the title for himself.

Nothing contained in this blog is to be construed as necessarily reflecting the views of the Pacific Research Institute or as an attempt to thwart or aid the passage of any legislation.

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