Economics/Class Relations

The Lawyers Who Ate California: Part II

By Matt Taibbi

The Activision Case, and the beginning of Tesla. Taking a strategy imported from the Department of Labor, the DFEH launches a series of media-centric cases.

The failure of the federal case against Oracle had wide-ranging repercussions. For one thing, the firm moved its headquarters out of Redwood City to Austin, Texas within months of the judge’s decision. Oracle announced a move in the same week as Tesla, which was destined to be targeted by some of the same lawyers who’d worked the Oracle case. CEO Elon Musk told the Wall Street Journal that California regulators had begun behaving like a “monopoly that cannot go bankrupt,” preaching a religion that “regulations are immortal,” while adding the following acid commentary:

If a team has been winning for too long, they do tend to get a little complacent, a little entitled and then they don’t win the championship anymore. California has been winning for too long.

State officials responded to the departures of Oracle, Tesla, and other companies like Hewlett-Packard by claiming that a combination of irrational resistance to the state’s strict COVID-19 laws and a reluctance by coddled white male executives to diversify was causing the exodus.

Eric Mellon, a spokesman for Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom, told The Washington Post that California’s success was “not despite our progressive policies, but because of them… These are California’s fundamental values, and we’ll continue creating more jobs than any other state.”


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