The California political "leadership", starting with Gov. Benedict Arnold flowing down to the Democrat and Republican leaders in the state legislature is really pulling a fast one on the voters of the once Golden State and essentially asking us to sign our own death sentence.
In the so-called budget deal that Gov. Benedict Arnold worked out with the Democrats and Republicans that could be peeled off, a total of six initiatives will be put on a ballot for a special election on May 19.
Amazingly, while we are told that the state of California teeters on bankruptcy, there is enough money to stage this special election. Hmm, I seem to remember when Gov. Benedict Arnold was the Governator. He wanted the voters to approve some common sense measures that may have averted some of this mess. We were told by same Democrats and their state union allies that it was a waste of time and money. Well, I guess getting the state voters to drink the tax hike Kool-Aid, money is no object.
Now that the Governator has become Gov. Benedict Arnold, we have found just enough money to ask the voters to approve the following measures:
Proposition 1A: If voters approve it, the temporary sales tax hike will be extended until June 2012. It would also put a 5-percent-a-year cap on legislative spending increases.
Proposition 1B: Would shift $8 billion from the general fund into the state's schools fund beginning in 2011, only if Prop. 1A also passes.
Proposition 1C: Would allow the state to sell $5 billion in future state lottery proceeds and use them to fill budget gaps.
Proposition 1D: Would shift Prop. 10 cigarette tax revenue away from preschools to other children's programs for five years.
Proposition 1E: Proposes shifting state money out of a voter-approved mental health screening fund to pay for low-income children's medical screenings. The screenings would have been paid through the general fund. But the shift could make up for cuts to the fund, officials said.
Proposition 1F: Would ban lawmakers from giving themselves raises in deficit years.
Where does one begin?
Prop 1A. The California voters are being asked to tax themselves for a while, until 2012 and the legislature will supposedly cap any spending increases at five percent. That can happen right now. The governor and legislature could have said that the state sales tax hike, from seven percent to eight percent is for one year and that there could be serious budget cuts now. When there is more money after the sales tax hike expired, then there could be no hikes over five percent. This is nothing but a political CYA. And we are being asked to CTA-Cover THEIR A---s.
Prop 1B is a little pot sweetener. You know, if you are willing to tax yourselves now, we your public servants will add more money to schools. Please! Do these ignoramuses think that we are that stupid? They must for they are asking us to vote on it. Right now, because of a vote of the people, a full 40 percent of the state budget is allocated for schools across the state. This is a pointless attempt to bribe some voters.
Prop 1C is a convoluted way to convince voters that the state lottery will save us from all of our worries. Just as it was supposed to be the funding savior for our schools. If that was the case, there would have never been a need to pass a proposition that allocated a set amount for school funding. This is true flim-flam.
Prop 1D is absolute robbery. Prop 10 was a hike in the cigarette tax to fund preschools and other children programs. It was passed by the majority of the state voters. Why Rob Meathead Reiner and then Arnold Schwarzenegger worked together to pass the tax hike and fund these programs.
And really. Does any sane person think that robbing this fund is a one-time endeavor for these clowns that we keep sending back to Sacramento? Just as Prop 1A is a fraud, this is too. And it is robbery.
Prop 1E follows the same robbery formula that is found is Prop 1D. Only the legislature would take money from mentally ill people. I guess they do not have a strong enough lobby to stop this. Again, this was a measure passed by the voters of California. It is a bald-faced way to circumvent the will of the people. The voters wanted to hike cigarette taxes to pay for preschool and other children's programs. And voters wanted to provide the money for mental health screenings. Whether one was for them or not, this is not a way to try to stop the budget deficit that is killing California.
Prop 1F is a big F--- You to the voters. It says that legislators can not vote themselves a pay raise in years in which there is budget deficit. Except that they took theirs for this year already!
Here are some actual solutions that should be tried.
First, a total freeze on state spending. No one gets any raises anywhere in government. Then, take and make cuts across the board to all spending at least five percent. No program can expand at all. It must be cut.
Second, do not raise the state sales tax but cut the tax to five percent. Why? People would buy a lot more high-ticket items that would make up for the loss in state tax revenue. Same with the state income tax. A cut in that would spur investment in updating and expanding some companies.
Third, cut out pointless regulation. There is so much red-tape to get anything done in this state. cutting many redundant regulations that could expand business in the state, which would pay employees and taxes would be a benefit to all.
Lastly, instead of a toothless we won't get raises when we can not do our job, here is one the legislators ought to do. Put an initiative on the state ballot that would return their jobs to part-time jobs. You know, a legislature that meets like 60 days a year and the same people can live like the rest of us. Go to the jobs of being lawyers, doctors, business people, firemen, policemen and the like. Then they could see how the rest of us live with the laws that they foist upon us.
It would really be something for those that we elect to actually do something different and courageous.
But instead, they are asking us, the California voter, to join them in drinking the tax and spend Kool-Aid.
Our only response has to be to vote NO on all six measures and make these people do their jobs. Do not blame us, the people, for your inability to do right by the people of this state.
Oh, keep this in mind. After all of this, there may still be an $8,000,000,000 state budget deficit to deal with. What will our governor and legislature do about that?