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Ray Haynes

Mr. Haynes is an Assembly member representing Riverside and Temecula. He serves on the Appropriations and Budget Committees. [go to Assembly Member Haynes website at California Assembly][go to Haynes index]

Disabling The Spending Machine
Paycheck Protection Initiative would make it tougher for public-employee union leaders...
[Ray Haynes] 5/27/05

What causes budget deficits? Irresponsible spending - it's just that simple.

Government is heavily influenced by an inertial force that pushes the budget debate towards always bigger government. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger gets it, and, because he gets it, he is getting it, big time. The hundreds of thousands of people who make money off of the government are devoting a considerable amount of that money to beating him up on television and radio statewide, trying to make him capitulate to the forces of the status quo.

Last week, Schwarzenegger released the so-called "May revise" of his January budget proposal. The revision has not been available long enough (as I write this) to allow analyzing its details, but early reports indicate the governor is not giving up his push for reform.

Other than proposing to repay, in order to help alleviate traffic congestion, the money the state has taken from freeway construction, he has indicated he will not increase spending on the programs that caused the deficits earlier this decade. If he sticks with that, California may just pull out of this current budget debacle. (In addition, during the last two weeks, he turned in the signatures to qualify redistricting reform, teacher tenure reform and budget reform, and is still pushing for merit pay for teachers.)

Real reform, however, makes the people who live off of the current government system scream bloody murder.

Union bosses - those running the teachers union, the welfare workers union, the nurses union and all other government employees unions - know this is a critical year in California history. They've grown powerful by taking public employees' money (calling it "dues" or "fair share fees"), then using the money to manipulate the political process to serve their interests. In this way, they helped create the budget crisis, costing Gray Davis his job.

These groups put $30 million into politics last year, 90 percent of it going to liberal Democrats. These unions' agenda is constant expansion of government, which, to them, means simply more employees paying more dues to expand the power of the union bosses.

These bosses hide behind the skirts of the schoolgirls, the wheelchairs of the disabled and the so-called "environmental crisis" to justify their designs on your pocketbook. Their large resources make it hard to counter their agenda of lies and deceit. Worst of all, they really don't want to do anything for the schools, the disabled or the environment - solving problems takes away their reason for being.

Which brings us to the Paycheck Protection Initiative that also qualified for a November ballot. It would stop the forcible collection of dues for politics by these robber barons. Government union bosses would have to convince government employees to contribute voluntarily to support their politics of bigger government and higher taxes.

Paycheck protection, for instance, would mean the end of hearing teachers union bosses bashing anyone who wants to make sure kids learn something in school, the end of listening to people earning $100,000 (or more) whine about skinflint taxpayers and stingy government to explain their failures to do their jobs.

Paycheck protection would mean government workers would have to work well, convincing ordinary Californians that continuing to pay them made good sense.

That is, the people, not union bosses, would be in charge of taxing and spending in California. CRO

Mr. Haynes is a California Assembleyman representing Riverside and Temecula and frequent contributor to


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