Michael Jackson's former Santa Barbara home was famous for having amusement park rides, a petting zoo, and for the child abuse complaints that originated there. Now the state of California wants to turn Neverland into a state park. Woo-hoo!
California assemblyman Mike Davis says he thinks that the state's department of parks and recreation should research whether or not Neverland could be turned into a public attraction. I'll do your research for you right now: that proposal is creepier than a half-naked clown on LSD. First of all, Jackson hadn't even lived there since 2005, right around the time he was acquitted of child molestation charges that allegedly occurred in the residence. And it's hardly the place it once was: After his death last year, many of the features of the property were disassembled.
The only thing messier than Michael Jackson's finances—he sold a stake in the ranch to Colony Capital for $35 million in 2008 to keep it from going into foreclosure—are the state of California's with its $19 billion budget deficit, a shortfall that has already caused the state to close down state parks on certain days of the week and cut back on vital government services. How does the state expect to buy Neverland from the Jackson family and Colony Capital no one quite seems to know. Maybe Governor Schwarzenegger can put up the money himself? Even though it's a totally skeevy idea, it might not be a horrible investment. Just think about all the $40 Bubbles the Chimp T-Shirts they could sell to tourists!