Do ballot initiatives put power in the hands of the voters, or are they another tool for special interests to dominate politics? California's experiences – both good and bad – make it an important laboratory for 'direct democracy.'
California is moving ahead with a massive high-speed rail project, with construction of the first link set to begin early next year. The project could put the state in the vanguard of a transportation revolution – but is it more a dream than reality?
The number of accidental entrepreneurs, who started businesses after finding themselves unemployed and unable to find work, has doubled over the rate found before the recession began (from 9 percent to 18 percent). And a good chunk of those are struggling to make end's meet.