Not voting to extend existing term limits
I'll vote no on Proposition 28, which extends the amount of time politicians may serve in the California State Senate or Assembly. If politicians at local elected water boards and other elected local and state agencies had been included, I would have voted for it.
On numerous boards, such as the CalPERS pension board, some elected politicians essentially serve for life. Stephen Butler and other Times columnists have written about how corrupt and incompetent the CalPERS Board is. Term limits for these agencies would help.
Politicians who first run for office promise us they understand the issues and can solve government problems. Newspaper editorial boards endorse candidates and assure us they are qualified. Eight years later we're told the politicians need more time to learn the job.
Were the politicians deceitful when they first ran, or eight years later when they want to extend term limits?
Being progressive costs lots of money
California prides itself on being such a progressive state. We have voted to have a bullet train and support stem-cell research.
We have sanctuary cities; our own dream act; our clean-air and water act; and the most generous public-assistance programs in the nation. We will tear down dams to return our
However, we have a problem: We don't have the money to pay for our progressivism.
We are regulating and taxing large and small businesses so much that they are closing or relocating in other states. Because of the anti-business environment, businesses that stay are afraid to expand. Hence we lose businesses, jobs and income taxes. At the same time, we increase unemployment and the need for more social services.
Our legislators are unwilling to cut money from programs. Every program is too essential, they say.
Our state legislators, who are addicted to spending, are not willing to consider addressing our problems until we hit rock bottom and California goes bankrupt. We will be another Greece.
Tax increases insupportable
I don't see how anyone, regardless of political affiliation, can support Gov. Jerry Brown's call to increase taxes, especially in these difficult economic times.
He has utterly failed to carry out the much-needed pension reform he campaigned on. And there is no guarantee the increased revenue this tax measure brings in would be put to good use.
Based on past experience, the public-sector unions will grab the lion's share.
My advice to the governor is that any future request for tax increases specify exactly where the revenues will go. For example, 100 percent of the revenues will go to reducing student tuition and fees at the University of California and Cal State University systems, and no funds will be used for any other purpose.
California needs long-term solutions
More and more, it appears, irresponsible government "leaders" want to try to implement short-term fixes for problems that require long-term solutions.
Gov. Brown's latest stab at class warfare, disguised as a cure for all the problems government has created since the dot-com boom and bust, is yet another such effort.
California is rated by national business leaders as the most toxic business environment in the country. Brown's current effort is only going to exacerbate that reputation.
By now, everyone except the governor and state legislators know the definition of "insanity." Therefore, they're either ignoring it or they're insane.
How many more businesses and wealthy taxpayers are going to pull up stakes and move to the more business-friendly states before Sacramento gets it and tries something different?
Hypocrisy evident if bill not contested
I am fascinated to read of AB 1544 that in your words is "quietly moving through California's Legislature." You say this bill will "grant state work permits to tens of thousands of illegal immigrants ... to solve a problem worsened by government inaction."
Since this is exactly the rationale used by Arizona's legislature to pass its statute attempting to limit illegal immigration and that the Justice Department's rationale for suing Arizona over that legislation is that the state cannot infringe upon the government's prerogatives pertaining to immigration, I wonder how long it would be before a suit is brought against California for the same thing if this bill passes.
But, then again, perhaps this bill's supporters and the administration wouldn't be worried about the blatant hypocrisy evident if they don't.