The WSJ ($) has an article on California showing the growth of expenditures and the budget deficit. I took the expenditures numbers and converted them to 2007 dollars and put them on a dollar per state resident basis, to correct both for growing population and inflation. Here are California government general fund expenditures on a 2007 dollar per person basis:
From these figures, we can learn a couple of things. First and foremost, the state of California demonstrates itself to be just as financially incompetent as any condo-flipping doctor who now finds himself stuck with a bunch of mortgages he can't pay. Lured by the false prosperity of the Internet bubble, California increased real government spending per resident by nearly 50% in the latter half of the nineties, and has done nothing to reign this spending in (thus the deficits). The only place where the analogy with the person caught short by the housing bust falls apart is that the person with expensive mortgages is probably not out buying a new Mercedes and big screen TV, whereas that is exactly what California is doing, passing a $14 billion a year health care plan that will whose price tag can only rise.