Thomas D. Elias


Thomas D. Elias

Recent articles

  • Columns

    Will lawsuits, high costs frustrate Brown’s water tunnels plan? Thomas Elias

    The first time Jerry Brown was governor of California, his greatest policy defeat came when resentful Northern Californians voted almost unanimously in 1982 to reverse a legislative vote authorizing a massive ditch around the delta of the San Joaquin and Sacramento rivers.This was called the Peripheral Canal; it aimed to bring Northern California river water to the farms of the San Joaquin Valley and cities in Southern California.Once that plan died, anything remotely similar...

  • Columns

    Speeding up CSU graduations must not dumb down degrees: Thomas Elias

    The 23-campus California State University system knows it must somehow speed up graduation beyond today’s pace, which sees just 19 percent of entering freshmen graduate within four years. The low rate is at least partly because more than a third of frosh need some remedial work.Increased college graduation is especially crucial in three major regions: the Los Angeles area, the Central Valley and the Inland Empire of Riverside and San Bernardino counties, where need for educated...

  • Columns

    Feinstein still effective, so why should she quit? Thomas Elias

    None of the host of ultra-liberal Democrats who would love to succeed her makes the direct argument that at 84 — she’ll be one year older by next November’s election — fellow Democrat Dianne Feinstein is too aged to be one of California’s two U.S. senators.But that’s what they mean. “Feinstein … is no less alert and active today than she’s been in recent years,” went one essay in California’s largest...

  • Columns

    Gov. Brown’s email exchanges with PUC remain undisclosed: Thomas Elias

    As Gov. Jerry Brown travels the nation and world posing grandly as the Anti-Trump and the ultimate champion of the battle against climate change, he’s plainly very conscious of the legacy he will leave behind when he’s termed out for good after next year.But an email controversy that’s dogged him for almost two years remains, and it may sully the grand record of accomplishment Brown wants to take with him into retirement.More than a year after the state...

  • Columns

    Whose UC is it? — still a valid question: Thomas Elias

    As a new school year approaches on the nine campuses of the University of California, it’s fair for parents of prospective students to ask once again, as many have for at least the last eight years, whose UC will it be?The question first arose during the Great Recession that began about nine years ago, a time when UC began accepting more and more out-of-state and foreign students to help make up for funding cuts inflicted by then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and state...

  • Columns

    Details present problem for needed bail system reforms: Thomas Elias

    There are plenty of problems with the kind of one-party government California now has, with every statewide office in the hands of Democrats, who also hold two-thirds majorities in both houses of the Legislature.It’s easier to pass taxes this way and budget discipline can be hard to find, to name just two. But the one-party dominance also allows for addressing some rank injustices after they’ve spent years as festering societal wounds.Cash bail is one of those.