Prof. Lalami is typical of those isolated academics who think their budgets are sacred. California is a bloated, sinking ship of excessive taxation, big government, inflated spending and entrenched public employee unions. "Education" is one of the many overweight items that needs cutting. I'm sure the world could survive if the professor's "creative writing" was axed. For all that vaunted talk about California's university system, it sure didn't seem to matter much that in the midst of those smarts, the state is now a Third World, failed entity.