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[1/31/05 Monday]

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 12:09am [link]
Hewitt Show Provides Radio History Friday's "Hugh Hewitt Show" on Salem stations nationwide was a radio memory.

Hugh broadcast his entire show from the Los Angeles location for 'Iraqi expatriate' to vote in this weekends historical Iraqi election.

Hugh's producer (my good friend), Duane Patterson, writes...

For the last ten years, more or less, I've been privileged to produce somewhere around 3,000 talk radio programs. Some that were scrapbook material, some where you can feel good knowing you helped someone or some group, some that you'd just as soon forget, and some that were silly beyond description. Tonight, outside of the old Officer's Club at the now-defunct Marine Corps Air Station, El Toro, I can say I produced a show that was an eyewitness to history.

Duane has a blog called Radioblogger, it is a must read and see today. Check out the pictures and the stories of those who traveled miles (hours), in bad weather (ring a bell Ohio?) to vote for the first time in a Democratic election for the country of Iraq.

What a weekend for freedom and liberty...what a victory against terrorism!
[Hogue Blog - email:]

[1/28/05 Friday]

[Tom McClintock] 12:09 am [link]
"Starving" Education on the 'All You Can Eat' Plan State schools superintendent Jack O'Connell this week called for massive tax increases for the public school bureaucracy while issuing a blunt warning to Gov. Schwarzenegger: "Stop starving our schools." Here's how the governor is "starving our schools."

According to the Legislative Analyst's Office, the governor's proposed budget provides $9,508 for every pupil in the California public schools. That's $206 per pupil more than last year. That means every classroom of 30 students will receive $6,180 more next year than it did this year - or a total of $285,240 per classroom.

In fact, over the past ten years, total funding for K-12 education has grown 88.4 percent from $32.058 billion in 1995-96 to $60.401 billion as proposed next year. Meanwhile, per pupil funding has grown 59.2 percent from $5,972 in 1995-96 to $9,508. In the same period, the federal CPI has grown 24 percent and the state CPI has grown 25 percent. [McClintock Blog]

[1/27/05 Thursday]

[Ken Masugi - Local Liberty Blog - Claremont Institute] 7:06 am [link]
Check Inmate Immigration Status; A First in California Solomon Moore, LAT: After heated debate the LA County Board voted 3-2 voted to train 6 jail clerks to identify illegals and turn them over to immigration officials.

"Currently, two federal immigration agents stationed at Twin Towers Jail interview as many as 20 convicted foreign-born inmates daily.

"About 80% are placed in federal custody for possible deportation or prosecution on federal immigration charges.

"But federal officials estimate that about 40,000 of the 170,000 inmates who come through the county jail each year are in the United States illegally."

The County Sheriff, Lee Baca, favored the plan, which is at odds with the City of Los Angeles policy:

"The Los Angeles Police Department has a long-standing policy, called Special Order 40, against enforcing immigration laws. The policy was created to encourage undocumented residents to report crimes."

Baca: '"This has nothing to do with immigration enforcement....This has to do with identifying and prosecuting convicted criminals."

For victorious Supervisor Mike Antonovich's views on illegal immigration see his essay in our newsletter, Local Liberty. See also James Edwards' essay on the law-enforcement toll of illegal immigration. [visit Local Liberty Blog]

[1/26/05 Wednesday]

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 11:02am [link]
Parra "Slams Door" on Reporter From Karen Hanretty's (California Republican Party Spokeswoman) Office today...

Assemblywoman and Chair of the Joint Legislative Audit Committee Nicole Parra had a meltdown in front of a TV camera yesterday in which he slammed the door on a TV reporter.

A Capitol Television News Service transcript filed the following report to subscribers on January 24, 2005:

“With reports circulating that Shelley may resign, Republican members of the Joint Legislative Audit Committee still want the Secretary to justify tax payer dollars spent on partisan events. The head of that committee isn’t saying whether Shelley will have to testify or not, should he actually resign.”

Nicole Parra: “I’m not saying anything til we have the big five meeting.”

CNTS reporter: “It’s your decision ultimately, it is (door closes).”

Parra talked a big game early on, promising to leave no stone unturned, but hiding from reporters speaks volumes about her weak leadership as Chair of JLAC.

“Although she vowed to leave no stone unturned in her pursuit of accusations against Shelley, [Parra] seems to have no more stomach for the investigation than her Democratic colleagues.” (Editorial, Bakersfield Californian, January 19, 2005)

Senate Majority Leader Gloria Romero demonstrated that unlike Parra, she can think ­ and speak ­ for herself.

Romero, who sits on JLAC, “told The Chronicle she expects Shelley to resign and that it would be better for the party if he did. She questioned whether he can effectively run elections in California.” (San Francisco Chronicle, January 25, 2005)

Also curious is Parra’s reference to a “big five” meeting to discuss JLAC proceedings into Shelley and HAVA funds. Perhaps in Parra’s world the “big five” represents Fabian Nunez, Don Perata, Gale Kaufman, Steve Maviglio and Art Torres rather than the top legislative leaders and the governor.

While Parra was unable to answer a seemingly simple question from a reporter, Nunez’ Deputy Chief of Staff Steve Maviglio appeared “in the know.”

“Shelley’s decision about his future won’t slow the investigation, said Steve Maviglio, a spokesman for the committee’s chairwoman, Assemblywoman Nicole Parra, D-Bakersfield. ‘We’re going full steam ahead,’ even if Shelley leaves office.’” (Contra Costa Times, January 25, 2005)

Slamming doors on reporters, referencing “big five” meetings and passing the buck to Maviglio all are more proof that Parra is in way over head as JLAC Chair. But that’s probably just the way Nunez and the Democratic leadership designed it. Good thing they didn’t make Romero Chair. She’d be much more difficult to manipulate.

I have to get better quick, I'm missing ALL of the action and the fun!
[Hogue Blog - email:]

[1/25/05 Tuesday]

[Ken Masugi - Local Liberty Blog - Claremont Institute] 12:05 am [link]
Illegal Immigration and the Mexican Military: New Mexico Reroute, Hollywood Redoubt
David Kelly, LAT: Illegal immigrants are crossing in increasing numbers over the New Mexico border, the Arizona border being less porous.

'Border Patrol agents who once caught handfuls of immigrants a day here now arrest 140 or 150 a night. Armed confrontations are increasing, high-speed chases have become routine and officials say they lack the resources to hold the line. At the same time, Mexican crime syndicates using two-way radios and sophisticated cellphones have American law enforcement under surveillance.

"They will call in our agent locations and spy on us at our base right here," said Colby Morgan, an intelligence officer operating out of the Deming Border Patrol Station, the largest in the state. "We haven't seen that before. They are getting at us from both sides of the border."'

Shades of Pancho Villa and Pershing:

'Border agents say they have run into heavily armed Mexican soldiers inside the U.S.

'"I have found up to 10 Mexican soldiers in a Humvee on our side of the border," [border patrol agent Rick] Moody said. "We don't know what they are doing here. They usually say they got lost. When that happens, we confront them and escort them back."

'Some officials here think elements of the Mexican military are involved in drug smuggling.'

In the meantime, Hollywood offers its protection of illegals. AP, via Fresno Bee:

'More than 30 actors, musicians and writers, including Diane Keaton, Carlos Santana and "Million Dollar Baby" writer and producer Paul Haggis, took out the ad [for a mock award for "Best Nanny"] Monday in the entertainment industry trade paper Variety.

'The group urges Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to approve a new bill that would allow illegal immigrants to get a license as long as background checks found they had no criminal violations.' [visit Local Liberty Blog]

[1/24/05 Monday]

[Carol Platt Liebau - editorial director] 12:03 am [link]
Goodnight, Johnny: It is the end of an era. With the death of Johnny Carson, America has lost a man who was able to be funny without being vulgar, who could have a public life and yet still be a private person.

One of the difficult things about growing older is watching little pieces of your childhood disappear, bit by bit. As a little girl, I recall awakening sometimes and hearing "Heeeere's Johnny!" coming from my parents' room; as a law student about to graduate in May of 1992, I remember being taken by surprise by how sad I was to see him say farewell in May of 1992.

May Johnny Carson rest in peace. His understated, wry wit will be remembered by many for a long, long time to come. [Liebau Blog]

[1/21/05 Friday]

[Ken Masugi - Local Liberty Blog - Claremont Institute] 12:08 am [link]
Red/Blue Divisions in California: Republican Growth and Power in the Inland Empire In a report by Michelle DeArmond, the State's blue (Kerry Democrat)-red (Bush Republican) division gets statistical confirmation in a poll for the Riverside Press-Enterprise. Besides the blue coast/red inland division,

"In November, 58 percent of Riverside County voters supported Bush, and 56 percent of San Bernardino County voters went for Bush.

"In Riverside County, 47 percent of voters are registered Republican, compared with 34.6 percent Democrat and 14.3 percent independent. In San Bernardino County, Republicans make up 42 percent of voters, and Democrats are 38.7 percent. Independents account for 14.4 percent of voters."

The San Bernardino County Sun editorializes about this phenomenon and the House Ways and Means Chairmanship of Jerry Lewis (R-Redlands). The John and Ken Show yesterday vowed to attack Lewis the same way they attacked David Dreier, chairman of the Rules Committe, on the issue of illegal immigration. The editorial appears to agree: "The United States has, in effect, placed a huge, unfair burden on California estimated at $5 billion annually by failing to reimburse the state for the costs of illegal immigration." [visit Local Liberty Blog]

[1/20/05 Thursday]

[Ken Masugi - Local Liberty Blog - Claremont Institute] 12:05 am [link]
Schwarzenegger as Nietzschean; Denounces Dem Leaders as "Three Stooges"

"On Tuesday [in a meeting with the Sacbee editorial board], Schwarzenegger evoked the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche, saying that for every attack, there is a defense. Although Nietzsche may have said something of the sort, he also had a word of advice to would-be dragon slayers such as Schwarzenegger.

'"Whoever fights monsters," wrote Nietzsche, "should see to it that in the process he doesn't become a monster."'

Moreover, Schwarzenegger made another Nietzschean reference, from Thus Spoke Zarathustra earlier, in arguing he would starve "the monster," the public sector. (Nietzsche calls the state the coldest of monsters):

'"Taking money out of the private sector is a no-no," Schwarzenegger said in explaining his opposition to new taxes. "We don't want to feed the monster. We don't want to feed the state - the public sector - and starve the private sector. We want to feed the private sector and starve the public sector."'

For those unread in philosophy, the Governor clarified matters by referring to the Three Stooges--"Attorney General Bill Lockyer, Treasurer Phil Angelides and Jack O'Connell, the state superintendent of public instruction. The three have sharply criticized Schwarzenegger in recent days for borrowing to balance his budget and for what they said are broken promises to fully fund public schools." He has said no to tax increases and insisted on cuts in the rate of increase of funding.

Note the Claremont Institute's proposals on dramatically cutting the school budget but increasing teacher salaries and textbook purchases. [visit Local Liberty Blog]

[Ken Masugi - Local Liberty Blog - Claremont Institute] 12:01 am [link]
Locals Lobby the Feds: Save Our Funding:
Richard Simon, LAT: Inaugural activity includes lobbying. In some states federal aid accounts for a fourth of the budget. Cuts in federal programs such as Medicaid pose unpleasant choices for governors and hence local officials. In an essay (not on line but I'll try to find some way to post it) for the World & I, Sept. 2003, I noted that impending state budget cuts would drive us back to living in another century, 1999.

A lot of this lobbying is for questionable government activity, but there are federal obligations:

"California officials say the state spends $750 million annually to jail illegal immigrants convicted of crimes.

"Congress last year provided $305 million nationwide for the program."

Citing gubernatorial advisor Steve Frates, the OCR provides some perspective:

"The bottom line is that griping about not getting enough federal money is a distraction from discussing the necessary steps the state must make to restore financial stability. The yellow brick road to a sensible budget does not lead to Washington, D.C., but to Sacramento." [visit Local Liberty Blog]

[1/19/05 Wednesday]

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 12:02am [link]
The Widow Matsui State Senator Deborah Ortiz, who was often mentioned as a possible contender for the congressional seat left vacant by the death of Rep. Robert Matsui, said Friday that she has decided not to run.

Ortiz' decision comes in the wake of Doris Matsui's announcement on Wednesday that she planned to seek the office held by her late husband. Ortiz said not running is the "right thing to do," and pledged her full support to Doris Matsui's bid for the office.

The decision by Ortiz leaves the 60-year-old Matsui without significant Democratic opposition in a district that is nearly two-thirds Democrat.

So, "The Widow Matsui" knew that her husband, the late Robert Matsui, had a life threatening illness. They were told by their doctor in 2004. The outstanding question is...when did they know? Before the primary? Before the general?

Why didn't they inform the voters of the 'safe' Democrat district? Did they plan for this 'clearing of the way' for Doris? Is this respecting the voters of this district?

This is 'royalty'; nothing more than generational campaigning.

I thought we left England because of a King and Queen...royal blood.

What a shame that Darrell Steinberg, Dave Jones and Debra Ortiz have to sit down and shut-up for the good of the Nancy Pelosi's power and control.

This was nothing more than a planned take-over of Robert's office. The voters of this Democrat district were left on the outside looking in...on the royal family.
[Hogue Blog - email:]

[1/18/05 Tuesday]

[Ken Masugi - Local Liberty Blog - Claremont Institute] 12:08 am [link]
Ken Miller on Schwarzenegger as Heir to Hiram Johnson: In the SFC Claremont McKenna College political scientist Ken Miller considers the Governor as extending original Progressive Hiram Johnson's use of direct democracy and his relatively modest ambitions:

"The governor is hardly scheming to secure Republican control of the Legislature. California is a majority Democratic state so it is unlikely that a nonpartisan, independent redistricting commission would produce many more Republican districts than currently exist. Moreover, it is far from certain the moderate Schwarzenegger would benefit from a Republican Legislature, especially one controlled by social conservatives. And many Republican legislators, who participated in the bipartisan gerrymander and personally benefit from safe districts, dislike the governor's plan.

"Instead, Schwarzenegger hopes redistricting reform will begin to change the Legislature's institutional culture by helping replace insider entrenchment, ideological polarization and paralysis with responsiveness, flexibility and willingness to pursue an ambitious reform agenda."

The Governor has asked to give him "big ideas." Glenn Ellmers had some of these in an article he did for Claremont Review of Books and The Weekly Standard. [visit Local Liberty Blog]

[1/17/05 Monday]

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 7:02am [link]
Painting Arnold for Fall
The Sunday following the announcement of the state's budget proposal from Governor Schwarzenegger and what do we have on the front pages of Northern California's two leading newspapers?

1. An attack column on Arnold that centers on two lies and an assumption.

2. A column that paints him as a money making hound while he cuts the candy from state worker's and their over grown union.

...Think they are trying to eat at his popularity in preparation for the 'special election' coming this Fall? [Hogue Blog - email:]

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 7:01am [link]
Confessed Criminal Gets State Pension $140,000 tax dollars a year offered to a state worker who confessed to a felony.

Despite a guilty plea in a federal corruption case, San Joaquin County Sheriff Baxter Dunn will collect $140,000 per year in retirement.

Dunn entered a guilty plea to one count of mail fraud in federal court on Thursday. Under the terms of a plea deal, he agreed to resign his position and cooperate in the case against co-defendant Monte McFall, a former sheriff's deputy and ex-reclamation district official. Dunn is also facing up to 18 months in federal prison.

Just one day after his court appearance, Dunn was granted full retirement benefits by the county's Board of Retirement.

Can those of us in the "reality sector" boycott these tax dollars?

Now we have a Sacramento County Deputy back to work after a felony. Numerous Sacramento Firemen back to work after various charges and convictions. And this announcement, that despite a guilty plea in a federal corruption case, the County Sheriff gets his $140,000 a year pension.

Would this happen in the private sector? [Hogue Blog - email:]

[1/14/05 Friday]

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 5:02am [link]
To all Public Employee / State Workers... Join the Pacific Justice Institute's program for public employees members to STOP PAYING their union dues to the Union and offer the dues over (redirect) to organizations like Capitol Resource Institute or the Pacific Justice Institution.

Don't show up for the Public Employee - State Worker protests and rallies at the Capitol and redirect your union dues to organizations that fight for liberty, limited and controlled government and support the family at the same time.

"Help me, help me the money!"

I'll personally offer an 'on air statement' of respect and admiration to those state workers who stand up to the union in this fashion. [Hogue Blog - email:]

[1/13/05 Thursday]

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 11:02am [link]
A Budget Test for Everyone We interrupt this broadcast with this budget test...

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has suspended two areas of guaranteed government funding, in an effort to balance the overall budget of California.

By initiative, there are guaranteed levels of funding for education, (40-50% of the budget) and transportation (transportation taxes have to be used for transportation).

For schools, funding will actually go up, but probably not as much as guaranteed. Democrats will call that a cut, watch and see...listen.

Transportation funds may or may not go up, depending on how much money is siphoned off for roads and mass transit projects to fund entitlement programs.

Education funding impacts school kids, parents and oh, yeah...the teachers union.

Transportation funding impacts everyone in the state.

Here is your test. We have two programs, one impacts everybody, the other has a focused impact on a powerful union.

Let's see who talks about which program more.

I'm thinking Democrats (liberals) will focus on the educational funds. I'm thinking the media (press) will follow suit and also focus on the educational funding.

Here's your test.

See who complains the loudest about what, and then you'll know who counts the most to whom; The issue that impacts everybody (transportation), or the issue that impacts a special interest (education)?

You make the call! [Hogue Blog - email:]

[1/12/05 Wednesday]

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 9:02am [link]
Get Off The Train! To the State Worker (Public Employee Union)

1. Government does NOT exist to provide you a job.

2. Government exists to provide me (tax payers) services in exchange for my tax dollars.

3. Government need only pay enough to ensure that services are provided.

If you (public employee) don't like what's coming - then QUIT!

That will send the message that government isn't paying enough for you to go on providing whatever invaluable service it is that you provide.

There's a new conductor onboard the "Sacto Train", and the gravy train is coming to a stop. If you don't like it, you show them who the boss is around the Capitol...get off the train!

Try it out here in the private sector, see what it's like to actually work for a living. [Hogue Blog - email:]

[1/11/05 Tuesday]

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 10:07am [link]
Whitewashing Shelley Investigation The Democrats are whitewashing the J-LAC, (Joint Legislative Audit Committee), involving SOS Kevin Shelley's HAVA Fund scandal.

Friday we found out that the first J-LAC meeting was scheduled for this Tuesday, but was moved up to Monday. Why? On Monday Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger releases his details on the 2005 budget proposals, this provides the Democrats some media cover to work behind.

We also learned that SOS Kevin Shelley may not have to testify. Remember when the Democrats sounded like they were concerned about the Shelley HAVA Funding issue? Look at this today from the Sacramento Bee:

The head of the Joint Legislative Audit Committee, (Kern County Democrat Nicole Parra), who promised that no stone would be left unturned, in the panels review of Secretary of State Kevin Shelleys handling of federal election funds, has backed off a request that her fellow Democrat appear in person at the panels only scheduled hearing.

Republicans and at least one Democrat, (Dean Florez), complained that the approach borders on a partisan whitewash unless more substantial hearings, including testimony from Shelley, occur. (Sacramento Bee, January 7, 2005)

The Democrats 'own' Kevin Shelley mind, body and soul.

I believe the Democrats plan to 'use' Shelley to slow (hinder) the initiative process this year's special election ballot. They will keep him in office as long as they can, then toss him aside as soon as the all of the ballot initiative deadlines come and go.

Remember, it was Kevin Shelley who faced the pressure of the recall initiative and met the demand with ethical performance in 2003 - will he do the same in 2005?

He is no longer his own man, he is owned by the party...he will do as he is told! [Hogue Blog - email:]

[1/10/05 Monday]

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 12:09am [link]
Maturing Leadership I earlier said that Governor Schwarzenegger's "State of the State" address sounded as if State Senator Tom McClintock wrote the text; Daniel Weintraub believes the same.

Wednesday night, suddenly everything changed. It was if the flashy governor were channeling his straight-laced colleague. Schwarzenegger's speech sounded almost as if McClintock had written it.

"Maybe I should have copyrighted some of my ideas," McClintock said with a laugh when I asked him later about the resemblance.

This a very good sign.

My only concern about State Senator Tom McClintock becoming the Lt. Governor in 2006 is his relationship with the governor and its impact on the health and growth of the Republican Party.

(Yes, there still is the issue of his "electablity" in a liberal state like California; but that's another blog discussion)

If Governor Arnold can take content and direction from State Senator McClintock, and the State Senator can refuse the temptation to become an "Arnold Antagonist" when the governor decides to journey a slightly different path, then we have a winning combination come November of 2006.

Let's hope McClintock's support of Schwarzenegger's office, and Arnold's direction from McClintock's many years of diligence and knowledge...proves to be more evidence of a maturing party with maturing leadership for the good of the state.

The test will come soon.

Governor Schwarzenegger will NOT be able to accomplish every item from his SOS Address and 2005 state proposals, some are simply 'bargaining chips' for discussions inside of the special sessions.

If the Governor is successful with 50-65% of his proposals in the legislature and State Senator McClintock refuses to play the role of 'antagonist' during the discussions - then we have a future.

After 50-65% is accomplished the next 20-25% can be completed by the ballot through initiative. [Hogue Blog - email:]

[Ken Masugi - Local Liberty Blog - Claremont Institute] 12:05 am [link]
Teachers Rap Gov's Knuckles; Expensive Campaigns to Come Alexa Bluth, Sacbee: As expected, the teacher unions are out to blow their Terminator away for reneging on previous budget deals and a budget reform that undermines Proposition 98, which guarantees education funding. And state governmental education tools are not helping either: 'His approach would pit teacher against teacher when we know that collaboration is the key to improving student achievement," Jack O'Connell, the state superintendent of public instruction, said in a prepared statement.' In contrast, the Gov's Secretary of Education, former LA Mayor Richard Riordan, notes that "unless you hold people accountable in the public sector as you do in the private sector, you're not going to get very far."

Non-Californians (or those without TVs) will know from past political advertising that Ward Connerly's Racial Privacy Initiative (prohibiting government collection of racial data, except for, essentially, medical reasons) was an attempt to undermine public health. Expect similarly rational debate as the great legacy of Progressivism, direct democracy is brought to our living rooms and dens.

So expect a costly propaganda war. See John Wildermuth in the SFC. The figures are staggering. He also notes the timetable for getting initiatives on the ballot: "If Schwarzenegger wants to combine a statewide special election with local votes now set for Nov. 8, he'll have to issue a proclamation by June 13, 148 days in advance, said Caren Daniels Meade, a spokeswoman for the secretary of state. But state rules and time needed to verify the signatures push the initiative deadlines even earlier." [visit Local Liberty Blog]

[1/7/05 Friday]

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 12:01am [link]
Arnold was 'McClintock-ish' It was as if State Senator Tom McClintock was delivering the address Wednesday night! As a matter of FACT, have you heard the State Senator offer a criticism today surrounding the governor's proposals and presentation?

Speaks volumes, huh?

So where are the negatives from last night's "State of the State" from Governor Schwarzenegger?

If I had to pick one, I'd say the governor's ignoring of State Senator John Campbell's 'spending cap legislation'.

Campbell's legislation is NOT for the bad times, but for the good times. The major problem with the Democrats is 'tax and spend', they are addicts all of the time.

When we have a surplus - if it ever happens again in California - Campbell's initiative would control the amount of spending according to pre-determined financial variable and criteria, rather than letting the government run on auto-pilot.

"The only real problem is the budget reform proposal which does not prevent over-spending and does not protect against future tax increases. The Campbell/Jarvis/CalTax Deficit Prevention Act is much stronger." - Dave Gilliard; Republican Strategist [Hogue Blog - email:]

[1/6/05 Thursday]

[Ken Masugi - Local Liberty Blog - Claremont Institute] 12:01 am [link]
Schwarzenegger on the State of the State: Television allowed us to visualize the fight against “special interests” Governor Schwarzenegger is spoiling for. The tedious build-up he was given at his State of the State speech Wednesday night said almost all. (Sacbee audio here.) The silly Assembly Speaker Nunez, the investigated President Pro Tem of the Senate Perata, the ponderous Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante (whom the Governor sarcastically congratulated for “his wonderful speech” introducing him), all those officials down to members of the State Board of Equalization. The special interests were on parade. How could Hollywood script more sleazy villains, from criminal to petty official? And villains are what the Governor needs.

The Governor’s State of the State address is the initial volley in a war that will last into the fall and beyond, to the 2006 elections. He set up four major areas for reform, in which he speaks for people against the “special interests”: fiscal reform (his most interesting and potentially most effective proposal), pension reform, education, and redistricting. He has called a special session of the legislature to deal with all these areas. If he doesn't get what he wants, he can call for an election involving initiatives as early as this summer.

Pension reform is the easiest to pass in the special session (particularly if the changes are cosmetic). And he can get superficial education reform as well. But he called for merit pay, performance standards, and charter schools—all measures that will aggravate the teacher union. These reforms won’t work well on an initiative ballot. Can he promise the teachers something in return for changes?

The legislators responded coldly to his redistricting proposal, and even if it went through (and wasn’t struck down by the Ninth Circuit as a violation of the 1965 Voting Rights Act) there is no guarantee it would change the legislature’s composition appreciably. Expanding the size of the legislature would produce more interesting results, but budget and reform-conscious voters might gag at the idea of more politicians. But what if they worked part-time? What if he swapped a change in term limits? (Term limits is basically bureaucracy protection, for it prevents the formation of a majority that has the power and will to eliminate the bureaucracy that protects “special interests.”)

But the best prospect for conservatives is budgetary reform. “We don’t have a revenue problem, we have a spending problem.” The budget is largely on automatic pilot, with much spending mandated by initiative. He proposes another automatic system, this one cutting the budget across the board when it exceeds revenues. (Sounds fair, but wait until it is put into practice.) In order to be worth doing (at its best like Colorado’s TABOR), budgetary reform would have to be done via initiative. That would be the great prize of his administration. Politically he would have the conservatives on his side (it would have to be tough enough) and enough Dems and independents to win; he can do it, especially after the special session fracas. No more Mr. Nice Guy.

Schwarzenegger praised his California Performance Review as the lighted fuse that would lead to a blowing up the boxes he advocated in his first State of the State address. The Governor sought out more villains as he proposed reforming the corrections department, building more roads, cutting regulations discouraging home construction, fostering energy production, and (at relatively little cost, or so he says) giving low-income Californians a drug discount card.

Most of this is pleasing to conservatives, especially of the market-oriented type.

But our disappointment with the Governor can be epitomized in his support of Proposition 71, subsidizing of stem-cell research. The immorality of cloning and experimentation on human life aside (and that is what is involved here), the law makes Californians pay $6 billion, $3 billion to “special interests.” And the law is almost impossible to alter. This isn't exactly blowing up boxes but rather constructing prisons. Which Schwarzenegger will we see over the rest of his term? [visit Local Liberty Blog]

[1/5/05 Wednesday]

[Ken Masugi - Local Liberty Blog - Claremont Institute] 4:19 pm [link]
Hugh Hewitt is for the Birds Declaring "I am not a species guy," our friend Hugh Hewitt uses Lincolnian courtroom strategy to defend his mobile home park clients, whose site may be turned into a campground.

'Hugh Hewitt told a federal judge Monday in Santa Ana that the well-being of the Western snowy plover — an endangered migratory shorebird — would be disrupted by the removal or demolition of the beachfront trailers.

'"The species is desperate," Hewitt pleaded.

'The legal tactic is a reversal of the norm in which environmentalists cite the presence of an endangered species in an effort to block development.'

Hugh is making a defense of property rights using the law as best he can.

From Hewitt's blog:

"The far better, but still incomplete report, was filed by Christine Hanley in the Los Angeles Times, on the front page of the paper's California section. It's header is accurate: "State's Campground Plan May Run Afoul of Rare Bird," but the story fails to convey the number of species at issue or the severity of the penalties that face the residents if the state stampedes them into illegal activity. The reporter is more interested in the apparent irony that a long-time landowners' counsel --me-- is using the ESA as a sword to protect his clients' interests where in the past I have to protect clients against the ESA's abuse. That may be interesting to a handful of readers, but the importance of the case lies in the unprecedented action of the federal bureaucracy, an action taken apparently because it favors the state project, and thus was willing to ignore its precedents and act in a responsive manner that private landowners who have pleaded with this agency for fairness and responsiveness for years will find nothing short of amazing.

"There few areas of reporting that are more deeply biased than environmental reporting, where it seems every environmental activist is celebrated as a selfless hero and every landowner a heartless villain."

For more on the Claremont Institute's war against crazed species guys, see our newsletter Local Liberty. [visit Local Liberty Blog]

[Ken Masugi - Local Liberty Blog - Claremont Institute] 5:13 am [link]
Dan Walters on the Folly of the Full-Time Legislature In reflecting on the state legislature's dilatory start and Governor Schwarzenegger's strategy for the year, Walters indicates how the state legislature is unworthy of its full-time "professional" status. Of course the on-going investigations of the Democrat Senate President Pro Tem Perata haven't helped either.

Walters' Sacbee colleague Dan Weintraub argues that Schwarzenegger will grow bolder, not more conciliatory, in the coming term. Should conservatives rejoice or become even more fearful?

For more on how the current legislative structure came to be see our book Democracy in California and Dan Walters' essay in our edited volume, The California Republic. [Local Liberty Blog]

[Nick Winter-CRO administrative editor] 12:02 am [link]
LA County Seal, Cross & ACLU: CRO’s Dubious Sources editors have come across the ACLU’s redesign recommendations for L.A. County’s seal… click here

[1/4/05 Tuesday]

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 12:03am [link]
Assisted Suicide in Sacto The Dems are returning to the "Beast" with their core issues ready to be debated in the state's liberal Capitol.

Is it time for the Republicans to encourage a statewide cultural fight over the leaderships agenda in 2005?

Sunday we learned that 'same-sex marriage' and 'driver's license for illegal immigrants' has been joined by 'physician assisted suicide' in Sacramento.

Those pushing for California to address the subject of physician- assisted suicide say ending needless suffering is also a quality-of-life matter -- one that deserves a new public airing.

"You can't stop these issues from being discussed," said former Assemblywoman Dion Aroner, D-Berkeley, who was unable to garner legislative support for her own assisted-suicide bill in 1999. "You have to make some decisions about what's right and wrong.

When is there a better time? There's never a better time."

Legal language will take shape after two public hearings, one to be held in San Francisco on Feb. 4. The bill is likely to be modeled after the landmark Death with Dignity Act given final approval by Oregon voters in 1997.

How long until we have the Groningen Protocol arriving at the "Belly of the Beast" in Sacramento?

You understand that ALL of this is about 'costs and government control'; it is NOT about compassion or respect for the terminally ill.

If the government can create 'universal (socialized) healthcare', then ALL of the major decisions will be made by the government's majority party. They will be able to control population, offer selective birth, life's health care and death's end game.

And the ultimate criteria will always be 'budget'.

The last six-weeks of a person life is the most expensive for healthcare - and the government knows this. So they can lower healthcare costs by supporting assisted suicide, while working the back door for legislation to provide (control) all healthcare in the future.

Look at this quote in Sunday's column:

Laura Remson Mitchell, legislative coordinator for the California Disability Alliance, said her group of disabled adults believes "there is no way you can safeguard people from being pressured into taking advantage of the option of assisted suicide."

"The way the health care system works," she said, "why wouldn't my HMO prefer to pay the $35 or whatever it costs for the (fatal) medication, instead of the $13,000 a year" in medical costs?

Control the birth, life and death of citizens.

Attack the free enterprise and 'research & development' of the drug companies; "we really don't need any more drugs to keep us alive longer (costlier) - do we?"

Grab the healthcare decisions and programs, so government can decide our health.

Provide for government workers a better healthcare package. When you own through with tax dollars, you can provide a better plan for those who work with you - not against you!

Literally "rub out" the competition! [Hogue Blog - email:]

[1/3/05 Monday]

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 12:05 am [link]
Roseville Parental Consent Reverse Attorney General Bill Lockyer's opinion has created more controversy in Roseville...(rather, it was a "quid pro quo tool" offered by Bill for the special interest of Planned Parenthood and the ACLU to threated school boards like Roseville.)

A controversy that rocked Roseville school officials last year and ricocheted in districts around the region is likely to erupt again Tuesday when trustees address the issue of confidential medical release for students.

Superintendent Tony Monetti said the issue landed on the school board agenda at the request of the teachers union's lawyer and trustees who had reviewed the opinion from the office of state Attorney General Bill Lockyer.

"According to (Lockyer's) interpretation, we're in violation," Trustee Garry Genzlinger said. "And we don't want to be in violation of state law."

Here is what (Governor Wanna-be) Bill Lockyer said in his opinion:

"Generally speaking, parental consent is required for a minor's medical treatment. There are, however, exceptions, such as when the public interest in preserving the health of a minor takes precedence over the parent's interest in custody and control of the minor. In addition, a number of 'medical emancipation' statutes allow minors to consent to medical treatment without parental knowledge, approval, or consent."

Beginning at age 12, the opinion states, minors can make their own medical decisions - without their parents' knowledge - concerning reproductive health, mental health or substance abuse treatment.

That right continues through the school day, the opinion states, and by notifying parents of a student's absence for medical care, school officials would violate the student's right to confidentiality.

"Statutes protecting the privacy of medical information are based on the Legislature's awareness that the threat of disclosure might deter persons needing treatment from seeking it."

Two years ago Roseville School Board - with the parents behind them - voted to contact and inform ALL legal parents on ANY off campus medical visit operated by the school district and faculty with their children. Now, the liberals want to use the courts (and an attorney generals opinion) to reverse the local school board's decision.

Someone needs to ask the 'new' Roseville School Board members why they are bowing to Bill's opinion?

Is it the ACLU threat that fears them?

Is it the threat from Planned Parenthood?

Or, is it the fact that they actually believe in this trumping of parental rights in Roseville?

Here are the school board members who need to answer these questions:

Jan Pinney - endorsed by Congressman John Doolittle and the Teacher's Union (Planned Parenthood too).

Jim Joiner - endorsed by Congressman John Doolittle.

Gary Genzlinger - endorsed by Supervisor Ted Gaines, Bayside Church (?) and the Teacher's Union. (Maybe the 10,000+ members/attenders of Bayside Church need to call the church office and ask what gives with Gary Genzlinger's position.)

We'll be talking about this in the morning on the show on 1380 KTKZ.
[Hogue Blog - email:]


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