California has a long history of groups trying to secede from the rest of the state — and the newest one has a plastics angle!
Jeff Stone, a member of the Riverside County board of supervisors, has proposed that 13 mostly inland, conservative counties break away from the rest of the state and form a new state of “South California.”
His proposed new state would include Fresno, Imperial, Inyo, Kern, Kings, Madera, Mariposa, Mono, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego and Tulare counties.
Los Angeles is the largest city in Southern California, but it's not included in Stone's “South California” — and that's where the plastics angle comes in.
Stone told Phil Willon of The Los Angeles Times:
“Los Angeles is purposely excluded because they have the same liberal policies that Sacramento does. The last thing I want to do is create a state that's a carbon copy of what we have now. ... Los Angeles just enacted a ban on plastic grocery bags. That put three or four manufacturers out of business.”
Stone's proposal has the proverbial snowball's chance of actually going anywhere.
A spokesman for Gov. Jerry Brown called it “a supremely ridiculous waste of everybody's time,” and a USC historian noted that secessionist movements are nothing new in California.
“It's been up to bat 220 times and struck out every time,” USC history professor Kevin Starr told Willon.
Loepp is editor of Plastics News and author of "The Plastics Blog.”