Shout out to Reason for this post: Farewell, My Lovely How public pensions killed progressive California

by Tim Cavanaugh from the March 2011 issue

…“This year we’re spending 10 percent less on higher education than we did 10 years ago, parks and recreation 40 percent less, environmental protection 80 percent less,” Crane told me in the fall of 2010, “while spending on pensions is up 2,500 percent. So when Democrats realize what is happening and act in the interest of the people they represent, they will address the pension problem in California.” Like so many other reformers, Crane is a registered Democrat who supported Jerry Brown.

The Democratic Party has folded Sacramento into one of the tightest one-party grips in contemporary American politics. In November, bucking the national trend, Democrats in California won not just the governorship but 51 Assembly seats to Republicans’ 29, 24 state Senate seats to Republicans’ 14, and every statewide office. With the passage of a referendum lowering the number of legislative votes required to approve a state budget (from a two-thirds majority to a simple majority), California is that rarest of land masses for the 2011 Democratic Party: conquered territory. State Democrats have freedom to rule virtually unchallenged by the scattered, rusticated Republicans. Click here to read more.

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(Rome is burning and …) Who Cares About Nannies? Or housekeepers?

From CalWatchDog.com, Steven Greenhut: If only Meg Whitman were an actual human being, rather than a carefully crafted campaign machine surrounded by scores of advisers, she could have indignantly mocked the Jerry Brown/Gloria Allred cheap-shot October surprise regarding Whitman’s illegal nanny. Whitman didn’t do anything wrong, yet the Bee plastered this on the front page for two days and all the usual suspects are pretending that Whitman is a goner. Some Republicans are responding by pointing to similar illegal-immigrant situation with an aide to a Brown spokesman. So what?Click here to read more.

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The Obvious Message of Jerry Brown’s Pension: He’s up to his armpits in the cookie jar, and that’s being conservative!

A kerfuffle surrounding a clandestine Jerry Brown pension is generating a lot of Drudge action on this lazy August Friday. Servers at the Watchdog blog (Click here to read the story) of the Orange Country Register that broke the story are bogging down. Keep clicking on it. The report is amusing. In fact, it’s a bit more than that….

It seems California’s one-time and now aspiring governor Jerry Brown has been drawing down a healthy pension from the state — perhaps double-dipping — causing a mild embarrassment to Jerry that could grow into something more than mild. At the moment he is locked in a tight race with Meg Whitman.

(This is just the tip of the iceberg, and yes, CA is the Titanic–but we’re not sunk–yet.)
Click here to read more of this article by Roger Simon at Pajama TV

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Think twice about fooling with the California constitution: Some powerful players want to overhaul the California constitution.

What could go wrong with that?
Sunday, June 14, 2009
Steven Greenhut
Sr. editorial writer and columnist with The Orange County Register
sgreenhut@ocregister.com
Below is an excerpt of this excellent article:
(To read the full article, click here)

“A California constitutional convention would involve about 400 delegates, including people selected at random (like for jury duty) and perhaps including dozens of elected officials. They would propose ideas, hash them out in committees and create a document that revised the state’s enormously long, two-volume constitution. Those changes would then go to the state’s voters for approval or rejection.
It sounds like fun, at least for reporters and civics teachers, but this is a nightmare waiting to happen. Other states have done this. Hawaii, for instance, in 1978 created a new constitution that sensibly required term limits and balanced budgets, but it also created an Office of Hawaiian Affairs that has pushed much of the noxious race-based legislation that has plagued that island state for three decades.
That’s the problem. We would get good and bad, just like we have now. Given the political complexion of this state, it’s hard to imagine that a majority of delegates would yield anything better than we have now, and chances are we would end up with something much worse – such as a new budget process that makes it easier to raise taxes.”


Meg Whitman’s first hurdle – state’s male GOP

Carla Marinucci, Chronicle Political Writer
Tuesday, February 17, 2009

(02-16) 17:18 PST —

“In diverse, cutting-edge California – the nation’s most populous state – the Grand Old Party has been anything but grand to women eyeing a future in politics.”

“There really hasn’t been that much of an effort to bring in women or ethnic minorities to the party … and those are the two obvious places where, if you’re trying to expand your base, you have to do it.”