“I’ll be back.” – The Terminator
California is the land of second chances. Too bad Arnold Schwarzenegger doesn’t get one. There was perhaps never a better match between man and place in the new world than Arnold Schwarzenegger and California. He might today be considered to have been well ahead of his time. He urged California to go its own way. The federal government hovering like a UFO overhead often seemed to him a useless nuisance. Arnold has recently started his own world called R20, an organization of regions united in climate action which completely ignores fixed national and international boundaries. Imagine a world born again of original, authentic sovereign regions instead of those inherited from generations past and drawn from ancient contention, some beyond even our human memory.
Schwarzenegger now brings his approach in Sacramento to the world at large. He said local governments are taking action now because "we can't afford to wait for national and international movement."
To Schwarzenegger we are all our own “city states” underneath, yearning to break free from ghostly ancestors who pull at us from the grave and, like a snake, slip the old skin to be born again in a “good and global commonwealth.” Would that New England could actually think of itself like that.
Today, Alperovitz’s comments seem prescient and suggest some of the changes that have appeared here since 2009 with the rise of the Tea Party. Gerry Celente of Trends 2000 has called decentralization the central idea of the rising century. But these ideas did not start with the Tea Party. They were here all along and Schwarzenegger was the first to conceptualize them as a governor of California.
Nor can California afford any longer to wait for Washington, and Schwarzenegger was the first to say so. Too bad he cannot be given a second chance.