How Big Government Is Killing California


When you’ve lost the entrepreneurs, free-spirits, and dreamers, you’ve lost the Golden State.
Steven Greenhut | April 27, 2012

The new USC study pointing to a much-slower population growth rate in California has been greeted by demographers and urban planners as good news, in that it supposedly gives our state’s leaders a little breathing room to plan better for the future. The rate of growth has slowed to about 1 percent a year, the result of fewer immigrants coming here and so many Californians heading to other states.

 

Click here to read the article

Al Ramirez, U.S. Senate Candidate, and Wayne Lusvari, Are Hispanics Up or Down in CA?

Tuesday, April 24, on Gadfly Radio, ‎Al Ramirez,  Republican, candidate for U.S. Senate in CA joins us to talk about his unique candidacy, and story.   Wayne Lusvardi, regular contributor at CalWatchDog.com join Martha Montelongo, John Seiler, managing Editor at CalWatchDog.com, and Ben Boychuk, Associate Editor with City Journal on CRNtalk.com, CRN1. Tune in LIVE at 10:00 a.m. PDT on CRNtalk.com or on USTREAM TV’s CRNStudioLive!”

Wayne Lusvardi has a new article published at CalWatchDog in which he responds to Heather MacDonald of the Manhattan Institute who believes California is doomed due to dysfunctional Hispanic families who are trapped in downward social mobility.  His article is not a rebuttal but a rejoinder -an expansion of her topic, in “California’s Demographic Revolution.”

Relaed Link:
Are Hispanics moving up or down the social scale?
Commentary
April 24, 2012
By Wayne Lusvardi
The ongoing economic malaise of the past half decade has slammed most social and economic groups in California. How are Hispanics doing here, especially in light of the bursting of the Housing Bubble?
For example, consider Riverside County, which according to the 2010 U.S. Census is 46 percent Hispanic. Housing prices therehave dropped 30 percent. Worse, construction work, a mainstay of Hispanic family income, has crashed 70 percent.
This matter was considered recently in the City Journal by Heather Mac Donald in her article, “California’s Demographic Revolution.” She wrote that, “unless Hispanics’ upward mobility improves, the state risks becoming more polarized economically and more reliant on a large government safety net.”
But she (click here to read the whole of Wayne Lusvardi’s article).

 

The New Aristocracy–Public Employee Unions–The Cluprits in Los Angeles’s Insovency

Officials and agency board members enjoy perks, and Cadillac benefits, without regard to who will pay the piper.

Unions the culprit in L.A. insolvency
by Brian Calle
Published: April 20, 2012 Updated: April 22, 2012 12:11 p.m.
Orange County Register

“…the City of Los Angeles Fire and Police Pension System is $9.25 billion unfunded; the Los Angeles City Employees’ Retirement System is $11.32 billion unfunded; and the City of Los Angeles Water and Power Employees’ Retirement System is $6.59 billion unfunded. To put the numbers in context, L.A.’s 2011-12 operating budget is $6.87 billion, according to the city…”

Click here to read the article

Desperate Means to Stop a Bellwether Measure

Steven Greenhut
Reform by Any Other Name
Call it “modification” if you prefer—but San Jose’s pension initiative will be a national bellwether.
17 April 2012

San Jose union officials are celebrating a decision last week by the Sixth District Court of Appeals, which struck some city-drafted language from a June ballot measure designed to reduce pension benefits for newly hired city workers and require existing workers either to pay more for their current pension plan or switch to a lower-benefit plan. But the three-judge panel’s unanimous verdict will do little to affect the ultimate outcome of the pension measure and much to remind the public of the lengths to which the state’s public-sector unions will go to resist any reform—and keep voters from having a say. (Click to read more)

David v Goliath in San Diego in June’s CA Primary

Public Enemy Number One
San Diego’s Carl DeMaio puts pension reform center stage—and himself in union crosshairs.
19 April 2012

In 1978, Howard Jarvis launched the U.S. anti-tax movement in California with Proposition 13, which capped annual increases in property taxes and kept people from being forced from their homes during real-estate bubbles. A generation later, the Golden State could be on the brink of launching another populist movement, one driven by anger over government compensation practices. A key battleground is San Diego. In June, voters will decide on Proposition B, the Comprehensive Pension Reform Initiative. It would end defined-benefit pensions for all new city hires except for police officers, instead providing pensions similar to 401(k)s. It would prevent pay sweeteners from being added to base salary when calculating pensions, and it would require city workers to pay a bigger share of their pension costs. Finally, Prop. B would mandate a five-year salary freeze. (Click to read more)

Bill Evers: Nationalize Education? & Brian Calle: Scott Walker Recall a Nationally Pivotal Battle, Tuesday, April 17 on Gadfly Radio

Tuesday, April 17, on Gadfly Radio, ‎Bill Evers, fellow, research fellow
member of the k–12 education task force, and Brian Calle, Editor-in-Chief at CalWatchDog.com join Martha Montelongo, John Seiler, managing Editor at CalWatchDog.com, and Ben Boychuk, Associate Editor with City Journal on CRNtalk.com, CRN1. Tune in LIVE at 10:00 a.m. PDT on CRNtalk.com or on USTREAM TV’s CRNStudioLive!

Related Links:

Nationalizing Education Through National Defense?
ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER, Santa Ana, Calif
By Bill Evers
This month, the Council on Foreign Relations issued a report calling in the name of national security for national curriculum-content standards on science, civics, foreign languages, technology, creativity, and problem-solving – for elementary and secondary education. (Click here to read the article)

Scott Walker recall must be thwarted
Orange County Register Opinion
April 11th, 2012, by Brian Calle
The importance of thwarting the recall campaign against Republican Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker can not be understated: The Wisconsin showdown arguably is the most consequential election in the country this year. And with the release of recent polling data showing the anti-Walker effort leading, the stakes have become even higher.

A Rasmussen poll released April 2 found that a “majority of Wisconsin voters now support the effort to recall Republican Gov. Scott Walker.” Fifty-two percent of likely voters polled said they would recall the governor, versus 47 percent wanting to keep Mr. Walker in office. While the election is still nearly two months away, those numbers are still discouraging. (click here to read more.)

Guns and Roses
Jerry Brown’s high-stakes tax proposal faces a political challenge—from the Left.
5 April 2012 by Ben Boychuk

Jerry Brown wants Californians to believe that the state, facing a current budget deficit of $9 billion, has a revenue problem. In fact, what the 30 million residents of the Golden State have is an entitlement problem. From health care to state and local public-employee retirement benefits, Californians face as much as $500 billion in unfunded liabilities for pensions alone. The state’s unfunded health-care liabilities top $62 billion. Brown’s new budget actually proposes a 7 percent increase in spending, though it offers to cut some services. All of the governor’s plans assume that substantial, voter-approved tax hikes will provide billions in new revenue, helping to pay for the extra spending and shrinking the deficit. “I’m promising wine and roses,” he told reporters after a speech last month, “but not in 2012.” (Click here to read more)

California Counties Are More at Risk of Going Belly Up, than Cities…

This is the fifth in a CalWatchDog.com Special Series of 12 in-depth articles on municipal bankruptcy.
April 11, 2012

By Wayne Lusvardi

“…If the courts rule that existing pension plans are constitutionally protected and unchangeable, then we are likely looking at formal bankruptcy for many local governments.

With the basics of municipal finance explained, let’s look at the fiscal — or budgetary — situation that California cities and counties find themselves in today.
City and County Budgets on the Verge of Upset…”

Many California cities are under fiscal stress due to the protracted contraction of the economy. Many of those cities will be staring down bankruptcy waves as public pension obligations start kicking in during the coming years.

One of the largest prospects for bankruptcy is that of…”

Click here to read the report.

Calling All Moochers and Looters! Soros Organization to Host Training for Occupy Movement

“99% Spring training”: support Moochers & Looters!
The Ground Rules, to make sure everyone follows the chain of command!

 

The The Looters and Moochers’ Front Groups funding your action, as an activist to serve their cause, not really yours, though you’re to think you’re fighting in your interest.

Click here to go to EconomicPolicyJournal.com: Soros Organization to Host Training for Occupy Movement

Terry M Moe, Author of “Special Interest: Teachers Unions and America’s Public Schools” visits Gadfly Radio

Tuesday, April 10th, Stanford Political Science Professor and author of Special Interest: Teachers Unions and America’s Public Schools, joins Ben Boychuk, John Seiler and myself on Gadfly Radio, on CRNtalk.com or on USTEAM TV, on CRNStudioLive!

Every attempt at education is blocked by the most powerful union sector in the country.  The Parent Trigger law is no exception.   Teacher’s union blow back and thuggish blocking is de riguer.   Accountability and performance metrics for educators are blocked.   How impenetrable is the Teacher’s Union and where is the path to a renaissance of real learning and a spirited entrepreneurial culture?

Related links:  Special Interest: Teachers Unions and America’s Public Schools [Hardcover]

The Parent Trigger Law and the case of Adelanto School Board blocks the take over bid lead by parents.

Here’s a great podcast interview at Education Next with Terry Mo discussing Special Interest.

 

 

The Don, Career Politician Exposed in Proposition 29

            While Proposition 29 proponents trot out charities like the American Heart Association and celebrities like Lance Armstrong, there’s a far more ominous force behind its drive to create a brand new tax of about $1 billion per year.      

            Don Perata, a career politician and failed candidate for Oakland Mayor, has just been outed by the Oakland Tribune in an investigative report that ran Friday. As the Tribune reports:

            Perata’s “Hope 2012” ballot-measure committee began raising money for what’s now known as Proposition 29 way back in 2009, and has transferred $488,500 to Californians for a Cure – the primary committee backing the measure… Now Perata himself has received $5,792.17 since July from Californians for a Cure, including $2,607.19 for “meetings and appearances” and $2,508.36 for travel expenses.

            Digging through campaign disclosure forms, the Tribune finds, “The rest of Californians for a Cure’s expenditure list reads like a who’s-who of former Perata aides and consultants.”

            It seems the self-dealing that will no doubt flow if Proposition 29 is passed has already started. By creating a brand new spending commission staffed with political appointees, it’s almost guaranteed to excel at taking money from taxpayers and placing it into the pockets of special interests. With Proposition 29’s 15 year lock-box on funds, not even the Governor nor the state Legislature can step in even in cases of waste, fraud and abuse.

            The same sort of ugly political self-dealing that’s sure to result if California voters were to pass Proposition 29 has already begun within its campaign. It’s one thing for them to do it with their own money, but something entirely different if they’re allowed to get their hands on ours.

EconomicPolicyJournal.com: Soros Organization to Host Training for Occupy Movement

“What’s the training going to entail? According to a web site set up by MoveOn.org:
Inspired by Occupy Wall Street and the fight for workers in Madison, Wisconsin, the 99% will rise up this spring. In the span of just one week, from April 9-15, 100,000 people will be trained to tell the story of what happened to our economy, learn the history of non-violent direct action, and use that knowledge to take action on our own campaigns to win change.

Click to go to EconomicPolicyJournal.com: Soros Organization to Host Training for Occupy Movement

EconomicPolicyJournal.com: Soros Organization to Host Training for Occupy Movement


“99% Spring training”: support Moochers & Looters!
The Ground Rules, to make sure everyone follows the chain of command!

The The Looters and Moochers’ Front Groups funding your action, as an activist to serve their cause, not really yours, though you’re to think you’re fighting in your interest.

Click here to go to EconomicPolicyJournal.com: Soros Organization to Host Training for Occupy Movement

A critical book review of Jim DeMInt’s Vote Republican by Laurence M. Vance

“It’s like the eight years of George W. Bush never happened.
Because DeMint believes that “unless freedom-loving Americans can unite within the Republican Party, the Democrats will win every election and continue to shamelessly lead our nation toward an economic collapse,” he calls on “every citizen who believes in freedom and opportunity” to “abandon the Democratic Party and help us restore a Republican Party that is principled, passionate, and worthy of the trust of freedom-loving Americans.”
DeMint mentions in his last chapter of Now or Never that “the definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing expecting different results.” This he applies to the Democratic Party’s economic agenda. But this is exactly what conservatives keep doing: Voting Republican and then wishing, hoping, and praying that something better will come of it than the last time they did so.”

Click here to read the full review of Vote Republican by Laurence M. Vance

Pulitzer Winning Author Sues Obama Administration Over the NDAA « Dvorak News Blog


“It is a piece of legislation that was essentially supported by both political parties. Indeed the sponsors of the Bill are Carl Levin, a Democrat and John McCain, a Republican. There was no outcry within the systems of power itself, and that of course meant there was no outcry within the media, which allows those systems of power to set the parameters of debate.” Hedges added.

“I’ll sign this into law, but I promise I won’t use it. That’s how stupid your President thinks you are.”

There’s a video on this post I’m reposting here.

Click here to go to Dvorak.org, to read the full post and view the video.

TEXT

Senator Gloria Romero on Parent Trigger & Steven Greenhut on Pensions & Healthcare Benefits for Public Emp Retirees on Gadfly Radio Tues., April 3 @ 10AM PT

Tuesday, April 3 at 10 AM PT, Senator Gloria Romero and Steven Greenhut join Ben Boychuk, John Seiler and myself on Gadfly Radio, on CRNtalk.com or on USTEAM TV, on CRNStudioLive!

Senator Gloria Romero is the Director for the CA Chapter of Democrats for Education Reform.   On the Adelanto School Board, the Teacher’s Union blocks the Parent Trigger.  Fraud charges raised.– related links:  California’s school reform ‘parent trigger’ law doesn’t need rewriting – Los Angeles Times

Viewpoints: Failing schools dishonor civil rights heroes – Viewpoints – The Sacramento Bee

On Steven Greenhut, VP of Journalism with The Franklin Center for Govt and Public Integrity, some related links:

Steven Greenhut: Bankruptcy may be only way out for cities, states| bankruptcy, unions, reform – Opinion – The Orange County Register Feb 24, 2012
The problem in the public sector is that government never is allowed to fail. There never is a day of reckoning no matter how poorly government provides its so-called services.

What happens when failure is no option? – HUMAN EVENTS  Feb 28, 2012
SACRAMENTO — In my latest column, I documented how the state’s pro-union Attorney General Kamala Harris provided an unfair and dishonest title and summary to a pair of pension reform initiatives submitted to her office, thus effectively killing the measures. Last week the unions tried — and almost succeeded — with an even nastier stunt designed to undermine democracy.

If Stockton Is Broke, Then Why Isn’t San Diego?: Steven Greenhut – Bloomberg March 1, 2012

California Refuses to Fix Public-Sector Pensions – Reason Magazine  March 9, 2012
Golden State lawmakers close their eyes and pretend the looming pension crisis doesn’t exist.

Special Series: Broke Municipalities Look to Bankruptcy Option | CalWatchDog  March 9, 2012
This is the second in a CalWatchDog.com Special Series of 12 in-depth articles on municipal bankruptcy.

Public Unions Send Medical Bills to Taxpayers – Bloomberg  March 15, 2012
The U.S. public pension mess, with its $2 trillion to $3 trillion in unfunded liabilities, is such a volcano of gloom that it takes a potentially bigger problem to turn our eyes away from it.
Turn your attention instead to the size of the taxpayer- backed health-care obligations for public employees.

Are there Other Stocktons Out there?
By Kevin Klowden
Director, California Center; Managing Economist
Monday, April 2nd, 2012 Want to ask Steve what he thinks of Klowden’s remarks here:

“There is hope on the horizon, however. Negotiations to reduce future pension and benefit obligations are bearing fruit and will clearly show long-term improvements for cities such as Stockton. Construction of intermodal port facilities in the city are creating jobs both in the near and long term. The concern is that neither of these developments helps Stockton and cities like it right now.”

 

 

 

Senator Gloria Romero joins Gadfly Radio Tuesday, April 3 @ 10 AM PT

“The nation is watching this evening. California is watching,” said former California state Senator Gloria Romero, who co-sponsored the legislation.

Excerpt:
The outcome of Wednesday’s meeting marked the second time the Adelanto board has denied a petition submitted by families seeking a takeover, finding they fell short in collecting valid signatures from parents representing at least half of the 642 students at Desert Trails Elementary.

The petition drive has been fraught with acrimony as the two sides accused each other of fraud and forgery in trying to meet the 50-percent threshold or in presenting rescission affidavits from parents who claimed they were misled into initially giving their support.

“I could care less if I don’t get elected to office again, but today I stand for all of Adelanto in saying we will not be duped by anybody,” school board member Jermaine Wright said in explaining her vote against the petition. March 28, 2012

Even after a second rejection, it appeared the debate in Adelanto, a community of about 31,000 people made up predominantly of low-income minorities, was far from over.

California Parent Trigger Law: Adelanto School Board Blocks Takeover Bid

Excessive Government Regulations Are Strangling California Businesses published in Fox&Hounds

She has a business plan, has secured the operating capital and has a location picked out for the new small business. However, before she can hire employees and open her doors for business to sell her product and contribute to the local economy, a state bureaucrat has to certify that the people who will come to get yogurt are not adding to vehicle congestion in that neighborhood. Huh?

Excessive Government Regulations Are Strangling California Businesses|Fox&Hounds

Steve Greenhut joins Gadfly tomorrow, April 3rd! Here’s a taste…

Steven Greenhut: Bankruptcy may be only way out for cities, states| bankruptcy, unions, reform – Opinion – The Orange County Register Feb 24, 2012
The problem in the public sector is that government never is allowed to fail. There never is a day of reckoning no matter how poorly government provides its so-called services.

What happens when failure is no option? – HUMAN EVENTS  Feb 28, 2012
SACRAMENTO — In my latest column, I documented how the state’s pro-union Attorney General Kamala Harris provided an unfair and dishonest title and summary to a pair of pension reform initiatives submitted to her office, thus effectively killing the measures. Last week the unions tried — and almost succeeded — with an even nastier stunt designed to undermine democracy.

If Stockton Is Broke, Then Why Isn’t San Diego?: Steven Greenhut – Bloomberg March 1, 2012

California Refuses to Fix Public-Sector Pensions – Reason Magazine  March 9, 2012
Golden State lawmakers close their eyes and pretend the looming pension crisis doesn’t exist.

Special Series: Broke Municipalities Look to Bankruptcy Option | CalWatchDog  March 9, 2012
This is the second in a CalWatchDog.com Special Series of 12 in-depth articles on municipal bankruptcy.

Public Unions Send Medical Bills to Taxpayers – Bloomberg  March 15, 2012
The U.S. public pension mess, with its $2 trillion to $3 trillion in unfunded liabilities, is such a volcano of gloom that it takes a potentially bigger problem to turn our eyes away from it.
Turn your attention instead to the size of the taxpayer- backed health-care obligations for public employees.

Are there Other Stocktons Out there?
By Kevin Klowden
Director, California Center; Managing Economist
Monday, April 2nd, 2012 Want to ask Steve what he thinks of Klowden’s remarks here:

“There is hope on the horizon, however. Negotiations to reduce future pension and benefit obligations are bearing fruit and will clearly show long-term improvements for cities such as Stockton. Construction of intermodal port facilities in the city are creating jobs both in the near and long term. The concern is that neither of these developments helps Stockton and cities like it right now.”

The Super Myth of Keynes as a Great Stock Market Investor

The Super Myth of Keynes as a Great Stock Market Investor
WSJ is running a story today perpetuating the super myth that John Maynard Keynes was a great investor. Writes WSJ:

A new analysis of the investment performance of John Maynard Keynes proves that the famous economist also was one of the greatest investors of the past century.

Total BS.

What’s remarkable is that WSJ provides the facts surrounding what really went down with Keynes. EconomicPolicyJournal.com: The Super Myth of Keynes as a Great Stock Market Investor