Stay away Terminator

Today, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said out loud what many Californians (and probably a lot of other people around the world) have thought, or maybe didn’t think because why would they: “No matter where you go in the world, people still want to come to California,” Schwarzenegger said. “There’s no one screaming like, ‘I can’t wait to get to Iowa.’ That I can guarantee you. They want to come here to California.”

I had to laugh when I read this because, being from California I would have never considered Iowa a destination. In fact, Iowa never entered my thoughts except when I watched “Field of Dreams.

But now that I live in Iowa, I thought Schwarzenegger’s comment to be offensive and misplaced. There are far worse places than Iowa that get far less tourism and far fewer mentions in national media coverage. He had one thing right: California does attract more tourism. People think of it as a destination. And I, too, would rather spend time sunning on the beach in San Diego or running through Golden Gate Park than battling through another Iowa winter (or summer for that matter).

Iowa has some good things to offer, though. It has the Iowa State Fair, as pointed out in a rather snarky comment by a Des Moines Register reader. It has lots of open space and blue skies most of the time. It has Iowans, who have this remarkable ability to stay in Iowa and survive the winters, and it has lots of pork, if you’re into that.

One thing it does have that California doesn’t, and Schwarzenegger can read this as a direct, in-your-face stab at his policies during his tenure as governor, is a functioning state government. While this year has seen a steep budget cut for Iowa, its legislature and governor are working more or less in union to address the problem. There will be no IOUs. There will be no late budget.

No, the pragmatic and earnest Iowa politicians are aiming to push through the legislative session in record time–just to save the state a bit more money after it reorganizes government and trims the budget. I can’t imagine Schwarzenegger or any of the California state legislators making fixing the state a common goal and actually getting something accomplished.

And that is one good reason to come to Iowa.

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3 Comments

  1. missmarilee

     /  September 13, 2011

    As an Iowa-bred girl, this made me smile. Thank-you for defending my home state, even if I am living in North Dakota and applying to colleges in California! (What can I say…Golden Gate Park makes my heart sing.)

    Reply
  2. sam morris

     /  September 13, 2011

    Word.

    I’ve been trying to get back for the last 10 years.

    Reply
  3. Bob

     /  September 14, 2011

    Except for some very rare exceptions, Iowa (and this is from a person who has lived here all his life,) is flat, with lots of corn and soybeans, some pig and dairy farms and a few good cities. The Mississippi River Valley is quite nice, with rolling hills and scenic vistas, and anywhere there’s a major river has something nice like it, such as Cedar Rapids (which had it’s own movie), and Des Moines. Not to mention the famed Iowa Hawkeyes, and the Iowa Caucuses… Yeah, no I’m good here, thanks Arny.

    Reply

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