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  • Wannabe the next Governor?
  • Hewitt - Mulholland, attack hack
  • Chron - recall steams ahead current tally
659,458 out of 898,157 petitions

81 days to go
[go to the Recall Follies weblog]

contributor commentary

[Streetsweeper] 7:07 am
“Diverse” Fathers: Conservatives in the Assembly get caught on all sides - this time having to vote against Fathers Day. Why? Because Progressives thought the very diverse Christine Kehoe’s “diverse” acknowledgement of the holiday was in order. In the Bee ["If all they'd said was 'we honor all fathers,' and left it at that, then every single father would have felt we were honoring them," said Assemblyman Ray Haynes, R-Murrieta. "But they have to inject all this extraneous garbage into it."] And just what “garbage” was that? [Controversy centered on wording that praised the "wonderful diversity" of America's fathers, saying they include "single fathers, foster fathers, adoptive fathers, biological fathers, stepfathers, families headed by two fathers, grandfathers raising grandchildren, fathers in blended households, and other non-traditional fathers."] Ah, Johnny has two daddies, don’t ya know?

more at CRO Blog

being Tom McClintock


California has a spending problem. As State Senator Tom McClintock likes to point out, population and inflation combined have grown at a rate of 21% the past four years; revenue has grown 25%. Yet California government spending has grown 40%. The result is an unprecedented state budget deficit expected to exceed $35 billion.
- Thomas Krannawitter 5/2/03

go to Shadow Governor

Wannabe the Next Governor?
[Streetsweeper] 6/13/03 | Well, you need to get your paperwork in at least 59 days before the election, whenever that is… You should be a registered voter – that should be easy ‘cause the state’s made it oh, so convenient even dead pets can vote. Lived in the state for 5 years. Be a U.S. citizen [not that we want to be judgmental or nativist or anything like that but it’s just one of those things]. Get 65 of your friends [who must be registered to vote – you can all go to the DMV together and handle it all at once] to sign your filing. Pony up $3,500 for the processing fee. Presto! You’re in the race! [go to CRO Recall Follies]

WEST BANK OF THE SEINE/ From American Spectator
Cardinal Godfather
by George Neumayr 6/13/03 | The drip-drip of scandal continues in Roger Mahony's archdiocese. Will the dam soon break over the Cardinal Law of California? Mahony's survive-through-spinning strategy clearly isn't working. Take a look at Thursday's Los Angeles Times. Above the fold on the front page, the Times headline reads, "Mahony Resisted Abuse Inquiry, Panelist Says." Inside the front section, the Times reports that "prosecutors consider whether to charge church officials with conspiracy." | Mahony is not just stonewalling prosecutors; he is even stonewalling the American bishops' abuse panel. The head of it, former Oklahoma Governor Frank Keating, tells the Times that certain bishops have behaved "like La Cosa Nostra." Keating didn't name these bishops, but one can reasonably assume that Mahony makes his list. After all, in the same interview Keating told the Times that Mahony's resistance to his inquiries has been "stunning, startling." [more at American Spectator]

Budget Meltdown
Stop shouting and start dealing
by the Editors 6/13/03 | Barring a miraculous breakthrough between now and midnight Sunday, the Legislature will not meet its constitutional deadline of June 15 to get a budget to Gov. Gray Davis. What's more, a spending plan may not even be approved by Aug. 31, which is when the state will run out of money and may start issuing IOUs to pay its employees and vendors. | A similar budget stalemate took place a decade ago when then-Gov. Pete Wilson and the Democratic-controlled Legislature didn't reach a deal until early September. The budget deficit they resolved was less than half of the current shortfall, which ranges from $38 billion to $40 billion. Factor in a nasty effort to recall Davis, which could generate a costly special election this fall, and a complete meltdown in Sacramento appears imminent. | California's unprecedented budget crisis requires responsible behavior on both sides of the aisle. Instead, both sides seem more concerned with scoring political points than in seeking consensus to close the massive deficit and, more important, achieve the structural reforms that can help prevent future fiscal crises. | The rancor is typified in Senate President Pro Tempore John Burton's storming out of a meeting of key legislative leaders with Davis earlier this week. The volatile San Francisco Democrat could be heard shouting before bolting from the governor's office. [more at SD Union Tribune]

WEST BANK OF THE SEINE/From Sacramento Bee
Ross Incident Underscores How Capitol's Politics Have Evolved
by Dan Walters 6/13/03 | The Capitol is atwitter over a confrontation between Richie Ross, an influential lobbyist and campaign consultant, and the aides to two legislators, in which Ross allegedly threatened career retaliation if the lawmakers didn't vote as he wanted on a controversial bill affecting farmers and farm workers. | Ross, representing the United Farm Workers union, was seeking votes for a measure that would repeal a recently enacted sales tax break on farm equipment purchases and use its tax proceeds to provide health care coverage for farm workers. | The clash between Ross and chiefs of staff of Assemblywomen Gloria Negrete-McLeod, D-Chino, and Lois Wolk, D-Davis, resulted in two closed-door meetings of the Assembly's Democrats and a pledge by Assembly Speaker Herb Wesson to appoint a committee that would look at changes in rules governing lobbyists. | There's more to this saga than those involved will acknowledge (Ross said it was just a momentary pique and apologized), but how much more is uncertain. | It could be a manifestation of the lingering displeasure with Wesson's leadership within the caucus. [more at Sacramento Bee]


Bad for Business
Countrywide's complaints speak to a statewide problem
by the Editors 6/13/03 | When Countrywide Financial Corp.'s top executive speaks, Californians ought to listen. | That's because Countrywide is one of the state's largest private-sector employers, with more than 30,000 employees (up from 12,000 in 2000), a number that could reach 100,000 by 2010. Its chairman, chief executive officer and president, Angelo R. Mozilo, is a longtime California businessman who knows a thing or two about the state's economic climate. | And his take is sobering. | At the firm's annual meeting at its Calabasas headquarters this week, Mozilo remarked that California has simply become inhospitable to business. |"I am sad to say that California, where Countrywide has been headquartered for more than 30 years, does not provide a business climate that is conducive to cost control or business productivity," he said. | Imagine that. [more at LA Daily News]

The Gravy Train Is Back On Track
by the Editors 6/13/03 | So much for some of the so-called conservatives on the Orange County Board of Supervisors. A month ago, the board dealt with a looming budget crisis in an intelligent manner - by proposing large cuts or elimination of programs that easily can be funded by the private sector. | But now Supervisors Bill Campbell and Jim Silva, both of whom describe themselves as conservatives, have joined the two more liberal members, Chuck Smith and Tom Wilson, in restoring hundreds of thousands of dollars to nonprofit organizations that should have no business taking taxpayers' dollars. | Mr. Campbell told the Register: "When I took my first look, I wasn't well-educated. ... We do have a role, I believe. I've switched." | Someone give Mr. Campbell this year's "grown (groan?) in office" award. | By unanimous vote, the supervisors restored $175,000 for the protocol office; by 4-1 votes, $575,000 to the tourism council, and $100,000 each to the film commission, the Orange County Business Council and Arts Orange County. | Supervisor Chris Norby cast the only no votes. He told the Register, "I haven't switched. A month isn't enough for me to change my principles. Private industry thrives by a lack of government involvement. It's always interesting to me when private entities come and say they need government involvement." [more at OC Register]

Gray's Attack Hack

Interviewing Bob Mulholland on the radio
by Hugh Hewitt 6/12/03
| If you google the name Bob Mulholland, you will find a number of interesting references to this brass knuckled political operative. He's the Yosemite Sam of the California Democrats, and among other things, a consultant to Britain's Labor Party on knock-down campaigning, American style. | Mulholland is also Governor Clouseau's point man, and in that capacity I had him on the radio program yesterday to discuss the pending recall of Gray Davis. Bob announced that Gray would be defending himself on the basis of his efforts to halt global warming and on the basis of California's new family leave law --which has been widely ridiculed as one of the most anti-business measures ever passed anywhere, and which any sane governor would have vetoed in less than a minute. | In short, Gray Davis has no record except one of dazzling incompetence, and the real campaign to save his job quickly emerged from Bob's frenzied delivery: Attack Darryl Issa, the Congressman who is moving the recall to the ballot with a generous contribution of resources. [more inside]

RECALL FOLLIES/From Opinion Journal
Total Recall--II
Gray Davis's governorship may soon meet the Terminator.
by John Fund 6/12/03 | A quarter century after Californians passed Proposition 13 and ignited a nationwide tax revolt, voters here may be getting ready to make history again. It looks as if an effort to recall Gov. Gray Davis will collect the 900,000 voter signatures to make the ballot . That would set up a political free-for-all at the same time the state is struggling with a $38 billion deficit. The mix of candidates to replace Mr. Davis may include both fellow Democrat Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger. | Mr. Schwarzenegger was one of several speakers at a dinner here on Tuesday night marking the 25th anniversary of the passage of Howard Jarvis and Paul Gann's tax-cutting ballot initiative. The actor remarked on the similarities between the populist revolt against soaring property taxes in 1978 and today's distrust of Mr. Davis for his mishandling of the state's budget and energy problems. | Several dinner attendees recalled they had not seen such grass roots anger at the political establishment since the days of Proposition 13. "Back then a movie called 'Network' featured a character who said he was 'mad as hell and not going to take it anymore,' " says Joel Fox, author of a new book called "The Legend of Proposition 13." "That same anger is back now in spades." [more at Opinion Journal]

Recall Madness
by Debra J. Saunders 6/12/03 | Insiders say the recall of Gov. Gray Davis is inevitable. It's a revolution -- the people of California speaking out, as they did when they passed Proposition 13. | No matter that the GOP Einsteins who thought up the recall never really had a plan. They had a swell idea. It felt good. That was enough. | They say it's the people's right to oust a politician who misled the public and put the state budget $38 billion into the hole. | Yes, it's a right, except that anyone who was paying attention knew there would be a record budget shortfall, and Davis -- like his opponents -- would be mushy on tough budget issues until after the election. And except that voters got what they were asking for when they elected an ultra-liberal Legislature. Of course, the state budget grew from the $71 billion in 1998 to the $100-billion monster budgets under Davis. | The folks who launched the Good Ship Recall somehow are convinced that California voters, who didn't elect a single Republican to statewide office in November, are going to opt for a GOP governor in a recall election. [more at SF Chronicle]

A Recall Amounts to Political Fiddling as the Fiscal House Burns
by State Controller Steve Westly 6/12/03 | With California's credit rating already the worst in the nation and in danger of sinking lower, this is no time to create more turmoil with a coup against our elected governor. That instability could only weaken the state's standing on Wall Street. | Our state budget crisis is so great, and the consequences of not solving it so dire, that no elected official should focus on anything else until the difficult job of crafting and enacting a budget is done. Yet supporters of the recall against Gov. Gray Davis are diverting time, energy and attention away from solving the budget problem to pick a political fight. | The recall should be reserved for extreme circumstances, such as criminal acts, and not used on a whim for self-serving political purposes. | The financial world is watching us. As we finalize the terms of $11 billion in short-term cash-flow borrowing, Wall Street, increasingly leery about investing billions of dollars in California, wants to know if our leaders are serious about solving the state's fiscal problems. It wants to see concrete steps toward a budget solution, now. Foremost, it wants to see that we consider getting our fiscal house in order a greater priority than maneuvering for political advantage. | That's why a recall campaign is bad for California. [more at LA Times]

FABULOUS BUDGET/From Sacramento Bee
The Public Is As Befuddled As Leaders On Budget
by Daniel Weintraub 6/12/03 | The good news for California's political leaders is that their collective stance on the budget pretty much reflects the sentiment of the people of this state. The bad news: That stance isn't going to solve the problem. | Californians, according to a new poll to be released today, don't want to cut their public services. | They're also not wild about tax increases. They might be willing to hold their noses and borrow to ease the pain. But they're not too happy about that, either. | This, in short, reflects the stalemate in the Capitol. So if Gov. Gray Davis and legislative leaders are looking for some bolt of wisdom from the electorate, they are not going to find it. They are going to have to dig down and find the solutions within themselves, and then sell them to the people. How novel. | The poll of 2,000 Californians by the Public Policy Institute of California, with a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percent, found that the state's residents are following the budget mess fairly closely but, by their own admission, still don't understand it very well. Welcome to the club. [more at Sacramento Bee]

WEST BANK OF THE SEINE/From National Review
Such a Lovely Place
Talking with Victor Davis Hanson about the future of California — and the United States.
An NRO Q&A by Kathryn Jean Lopez 6/11/03 | Regular readers of National Review Online are no strangers to Victor Davis Hanson. He writes a weekly column for us, as well as writing for City Journal, lecturing, and book composing, among other things. A professor of classics at California State University, Fresno, he is the author of Carnage and Culture, The Western Way of War, and the upcoming Ripples of Battle: How Wars Fought Long Ago Still Determine How We Fight, How We Live, and How We Think. His most recent book, just published by Peter Collier's Encounter Books is Mexifornia: A State of Becoming. He talked to NRO about Mexifornia, immigration, and his beloved California on Tuesday. | Kathryn Jean Lopez: What has multiculturalism and mass immigration wrought in Selma, California, your hometown? | Victor Davis Hanson: Well, a town once almost evenly divided between those of Mexican ancestry and others, who all sought to shed their ethnic identifications due to the assimilationist policies of the schools, government, and wider culture, is now composed of somewhere between 70-95 percent Mexican-American and Mexican residents. | Yet no one really knows due to the large number of illegal aliens who reside here. Immigration from Mexico was once as measured and legal as it is now uncontrolled and unlawful. And instead of meeting the challenge of turning illegal immigrants into Americans, our teachers, politicians, and government officials for some time have taken the easier route of allowing a separatist culture, from bilingualism and historical revisionism in the schools, to non-enforcement of legal statutes and a general self-imposed censorship about honest discussion of the problem.
| The result is that we are seeing in the area the emergence of truly apartheid communities — like nearby Orange Cove, Parlier, Mendota, and Calwa — that resemble Mexican rather than American societies, and that are plagued by dismal schools, scant capital, many of the same social problems as Mexico, and a general neglect by the larger culture, including prosperous and successful second- and third-generation Mexican Americans who would never live there. [more at National Review]

RECALL FOLLIES/From American Spectator
South Heads East
by George Neumayr 6/11/03 | Political strategist Garry South must sense doom for Gray Davis. He is ditching the effort to defend Davis against a recall. The Los Angeles Times reported last Friday that he "will take no formal role in fighting the recall effort." As he explained to the Times, "I've got other things going on in my life."
| South, reports the Times, is off to work for presidential candidate Joseph Lieberman as a senior campaign adviser. Isn't that an even more hopeless task than defending Davis? Apparently South doesn't think so. Which is telling. If South considers Lieberman's presidential run less doomed than Davis's chances of surviving a recall, Davis should really begin to panic. | Panic is certainly warranted. Tuesday's numbers at Davis suggest that the question isn't whether Davis will face a recall but when. The site reports 535,374 signatures out of 898,157 petitions necessary for a recall. | Taxpayers Against the Recall -- the phony group Davis had to scramble to form -- looks pretty rag-tag and desperate. The group consists not of grass-roots taxpayers but of union hacks who have long supped at the tax trough. Notice that Steve Smith, California's labor secretary, has taken a "leave of absence." Why? Because Davis needs him free to dial up friends in organized labor to kill the recall drive. [more at American Spectator]

The Perils Of A One-Party State
by David Davenport 6/11/03 | If Competition brings out the best in people, it is no wonder that Gray Davis is buried in huge budget deficits and low poll numbers, facing the prospect of being the first California governor ever recalled from office. Republicans have provided Gov. Davis and the Democrats with little or no competition and thus California is facing some of the challenges of a one- party state.
| It happened so fast. After holding the governorship for 16 consecutive years until 1998, no Republican now occupies an elective state office in California for the first time since 1882. With no one in the farm system of lesser statewide office, there are few bright prospects for the immediate future. Only members of Congress would be well positioned to run for governor or senator, and the risk of giving up a safe seat in the House to run in a state where only 35 percent of the electorate is registered Republican is simply too great. | So the loyal opposition is reduced to trying to recall an unpopular governor it could not defeat in the 2002 general election. Or, since the Republicans do not have a majority in either chamber of the state Legislature, to taking important issues directly to voters through endless ballot initiatives. With no obvious candidate for governor or senator in the lineup, Republicans can only hope that Arnold Schwarzenegger or National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice will pinch-hit and provide a game-winning home run. | It's not enough for the 65 percent of Californians who are not Republicans to say, "It's their party and they can cry if they want to." No, the problem of a one-party state is a problem for the state as a whole. [more at SF Chronicle]

'Blameless' Davis
by Chris Weinkopf 6/11/03 | Gov. Gray Davis chooses his words carefully. | When he came to the Daily News a few weeks ago to sell his new budget plan, he offhandedly declared, "I propose that we reinstate the vehicle ..." before catching and correcting himself. | If he'd continued as he started, the next words out of his mouth would have been "license fee," as his budget includes a provision to triple the annual tax Californians pay on each car they lease or own. | But under a handy, tortured legal opinion produced by lawyers for Davis and state Controller Steve Westly, no one in Sacramento actually has to accept responsibility for hiking the vehicle license fee. The official line is that whenever the state is sufficiently short on funds, the tax goes up all on its own, like weeds through cracks in the pavement. [more at LA Daily News]

The Newest Rip-Off
State, local government have eyes for your paycheck
by the Editors 6/11/03 | Democratic lawmakers in Sacramento want to give California's city and county governments a gift worth as much as $3.4 billion. | And you'll be the one paying for it. | The gift comes in the form of AB 1690, which passed through the Assembly last week and now awaits Senate approval. If signed into law, the legislation would allow local governments to start taxing income, a power now reserved for Washington and Sacramento. | That smacking noise you hear is the sound of Los Angeles city and county leaders licking their chops. | In a convoluted attempt to skirt Proposition 13 protections, AB 1690 would let local governments decide for themselves whether imposing an income tax would require a two-thirds super-majority or a simple majority of the affected electorate. | Gee, does anyone care to guess which threshold local governments would choose for themselves? [more at LA Daily News]

There They Go Again
posting by John Eastman 6/11/03 | Earlier this year, the Supreme Court upheld California's Three-Strikes law (much to the chagrin of my weekly debate opponent, Erwin Chemerinsky, who argued the Andrade case). No matter. Ninth Circuit Judge Harry Preferson last month refused to follow the Supreme Court's precedent, writing in dissent in Wallace v. Castro: "In good conscience, I cannot vote to go along with the sentence imposed on the petty theft count." This, despite the fact that the "good" Mr. Wallace had two prior violent or serious felonies and was, at the time of his petty theft conviction, also convicted on one count each of grand theft, check forgery, possession of stolen property, possession of a forged driver's license, and possession of a hypodermic needle or syringe. This, at least, is consistent with Judge Pregerson's testimony during his late-1970s confirmation hearing when, in response to a question whether as a Judge he would follow the law or his own conscience, specifically stated that he would follow his conscience (and ignore the law). [more at Claremont Institute]

FABULOUS BUDGET/From Sacramento Bee
Borrowing By State Merely Postpones The Reckoning
by Dan Walters 6/11/03 | State officials will open bids today for $11 billion in short-term loans to ease a severe cash crunch, but while the money will forestall defaults on other loans coming due this month, it may delay resolution of California's monumental budget crisis for many more weeks.
| Without the "revenue anticipation warrants" (RAWs) that Controller Steve Westly is floating, he and Treasurer Phil Angelides would not have enough cash to retire "revenue anticipation notes" (RANs) that fall due this month, and the state probably would default. But the political effect of the refinancing is to remove some of the financial pressure to have a budget in place when the new fiscal year begins on July 1. [more at Sacramento Bee]

El Toro: Déjà Vu All Over Again
by the Editors 6/11/03 | For a moment, it seemed like old times, but more like a scary flashback than a fond memory. Our editorial e-mail inboxes are filled with blustering messages from activists involved in the El Toro airport battle, and the news stories are filled with quotations from members of those acronym groups such as the AWG (Airport Working Group) and ETRPA (El Toro Reuse Planning Authority).
| Is the El Toro airport idea ... back? | Orange County residents can, er, "thank" Los Angeles Mayor Jim Hahn for, at least temporarily, rekindling the most divisive and long-running debate in recent Orange County history: Should the closed El Toro Marine Corps Air Station be turned into an international airport, or should it be transformed into a Great Park, albeit one with a lot of commercial and residential development to fund all the open space? [more at OC Register]

The Governor's Enron-style Accounting
Davis' definition of frugal: $2 billion in new spending, $17 billion in loans
by Tom McClintock 6/10/03 | Gov. Gray Davis' May budget revision at least answers one question: Whatever happened to Enron's accountants? By every indication, they're alive and well and hard at work on the state budget crisis. [more at OC Register]

RECALL FOLLIES/From Sacramento Bee
Recall Election Is Looking More Likely By The Day
by Daniel Weintraub 6/10/03 | On the 12th floor of the Elks Temple building in downtown Sacramento, in a three-room suite of dingy offices with a view of the Capitol dome, about a dozen young Republican operatives, most from UC Davis, are opening mail all day long and into the night.[more at Sacramento Bee]

Workers' Comp Crisis is Only an Indicator
by the Editors 6/10/03 | California always has been a costly place to do business, but its great climate and other amenities have largely compensated for the problems. But with a budget crisis, escalating workers' compensation and electricity costs, and an increasingly rough regulatory climate, more businesses are talking about leaving and others are actually doing it. [more at OC Register]

Story of Deported Dad Borders on Confusion
by Gordon Dillow 6/10/03 | I've never had a cop apologize for hanging a traffic ticket on me. And I've certainly never had a cop promise that he won't stop me for speeding outside a school, a hospital or a community center. | So why did the U.S. Border Patrol have to go on a media blitz last week to defend itself for enforcing the law? [more at OC Register]

INSIDE CRO/Fabulous Budget
Slap the Greedy Hand

Authorizing Local Taxes Is Just Plain Wrong
by Carol Platt Liebau 6/9/03 | California’s greatest governor, Ronald Reagan, once observed that a government with the power to give the people anything they wanted was also a government with the power to take away everything they had. | Without having done the former, the California legislature seems hard at work on the latter. Just last Wednesday, the Assembly approved AB 1690, which will authorize cities and counties to join the state and federal authorities in placing a clammy, grabby governmental hand into every taxpayer’s pocket. Because the bill was co-written by John Burton, president pro tem of the Senate, rest assured that it will get a full and enthusiastic hearing in the tax-friendly body over which he presides. | Californians already pay $130 billion in taxes – and has lost more than 285,000 manufacturing jobs since January of 2001. Yet many state legislators are so greedy or so stupid that they would blithely add another layer to the tax burden already borne by California businesses and citizens. Local income taxes will simply mean that people who actually pay taxes will simply leave the localities that impose them – just as California businesses and citizens have increasingly moved to more taxpayer-friendly western states like Nevada, Idaho, Utah and Texas. When will California’s “leaders” understand that a state or a city with a hounded, diminished tax base will never enjoy a healthy economy? [more inside]

We’re From the Government, and We’re Here To Heal You!
Two massive health care “reform” bills are moving through the legislature
by Ray Haynes 6/9/03 | It has been said that one of the scariest sentences in the English language is “We’re from the government, and we’re here to help you.” Look out, health care, because here they come! [more inside]

State's Profligate Short-Timers
Don't raise taxes; raise legislators' accountability.
by Benjamin Zycher 6/9/03 | Ah, California, the Golden State: sunshine, beautiful people, Hollywood, natural wonders, lush farms, ranches, vineyards, high-tech heaven. | And then there is Sacramento. | How is it that a state so rich now finds itself with one of the nation's highest tax rates, a multibillion-dollar budget deficit and poor public services? | It began with a series of campaign finance "reforms" that ironically made it harder for challengers seeking to unseat incumbents, who enjoy greater name recognition and unpaid media coverage. This system allowed officeholders to ignore the pressures of political competition and instead follow their consciences — a highly unreliable bulwark against policy disaster. [more at LA Times]

California's Runaway Recall
by Robert Novak 6/9/03 | The movement to replace just re-elected Democrat Gray Davis as governor of California is beginning to look like a runaway train with nobody at the controls. [more at Town Hall]

RECALL FOLLIES/From Sacramento Bee
Politicians Jockeying as Davis Recall Drive Gains Steam
by Dan Walters 6/9/03 | A month ago, forcing Gov. Gray Davis to face a recall election appeared to be a long shot, at best, because recall organizers lacked money for a professional signature-gathering drive. Today, it's at least an even bet, thanks to an infusion of money from Republican Congressman Darrell Issa, who wants to succeed Davis. [more at Sacramento Bee]

Garamendi's Right About Workers' Comp
by the Editors 6/9/03 | Public policy-makers, businesses and citizens recognize that something has to be done to resolve the deepening crisis in workers' compensation in California. Businesses statewide have seen total premiums nearly triple to $15.4 billion in 2002 from $5.7 billion in 1995. [more at OC Register]

A Thinner Blue Line
Jobs and services are needed in L.A. But let's start with a few more cops.
by Jervey Tervalon 6/8/03 | Over breakfast Thursday morning, I read about the execution-style slaying of Londell Murdock, father of two and a custodian for the state, killed because he wanted a soda before starting work. He wore the wrong color shoes in the wrong neighborhood, and that may have been what offended the two men arrested in connection with the killing. [more at LA Times]

Cutting Deals
Did Mayor Hahn try to buy votes for political appointments?
by the Editors 6/8/093 | In Los Angeles City Hall, political favors have been bought and sold for a long time, but rarely as nakedly as they were last week. [more at LA Daily News]

California Loses in a Recall
by the Editors 6/8/09 | Is Gov. Gray Davis anyone's favorite politician? No. Not in this lifetime. But let's think for a moment about the potential consequences of the recall effort building against him. [more at LA Times]

WEST BANK OF THE SEINE/From Sacramento Bee
Washington and Sacramento -- Capitals Occupied by Adverse Forces
by Dan Walters 6/8/03 | Had gold not been discovered in California, its admission as a state would have been delayed for many years, perhaps decades. Thus, when California gave up its brief status as an independent nation and joined the United States, it was separated by thousands of miles of mostly unpopulated wilderness from what was then the center of American finance and culture. | The passage of time -- more than 150 years -- has not diminished California's sense of being different. If anything, the size of its population and economy, its cultural diversity and its global status have enhanced California's metaphysical separation from the rest of the nation. [more at Sacramento Bee]

Prop. 13 Turns Silver
Passage of tax-limiting law showed ordinary folks could defeat powerful foes.
by Jon Coupal 6/8/03 | June 6 is remembered by much of world as a day of liberation, for it is the anniversary of D-Day, when allies launched the invasion to free Europe from the grip of Nazi tyranny. | In California, June 6 also marked another anniversary celebrating freedom - the day 25 years ago when California voters charged into voting booths and passed Proposition 13 to take control of taxation by cutting property taxes, setting tax limits and requiring votes on future tax increases. [more at OC Register]

WEST BANK OF THE SEINE/From Sacramento Bee
Connerly's Race Initiative Deserves Some Honest Debate
by Daniel Weintraub 6/8/03 | Ward Connerly has an idea. It is simple yet revolutionary. And it needs to be debated seriously. It is this: The government has no business asking individuals to report their race or ethnicity on official forms. [more at Sacramento Bee]

CALIFORNIA EXPORTS/Hollywood vs. Reality
Hollywood, History—and the Truth
by Chuck Colson 6/7/03 | In the 1942 tearjerker Now, Voyager, suave actor Paul Henreid says to Bette Davis: "Shall we just have a cigarette on it?" As the two gaze deeply into one another’s eyes, Henreid puts two cigarettes into his mouth, lights them, and hands one to Davis. | It was considered the ultimate in sophisticated romance. | Flash forward fifty-seven years. In the hit comedy My Best Friend’s Wedding, Julia Roberts sits on the floor outside a hotel room, smoking an illicit cigarette. Her friend yanks open the door and snatches the cigarette from her fingers. "I want you to quit this [stuff] before it kills you," he snarls. | It’s the ultimate in social condemnation—and a complete reversal of the cinematic attitudes of yesteryear. | What happened between 1942 and 1997 to generate such a change? The answer shines a spotlight on how we may one day win the abortion debate. [more at Town Hall]

Front Page Index
The Week: 5/31/03 – 6/6/03

The First Shot Proposition 13 is where the Reagan Revolution began. by Joel Fox 6/6/03 | The Bogus Scapegoating of Prop. 13 Government not only wasn't gutted, per-capita spending is higher than ever by Gary M. Galles 6/6/03 | Taxpayer Rights Prop. 13, 25 years later by the Editors 6/6/03 | Legislators Haven't Learned About Folly Of Ignorant Decisions by Dan Walters 6/6/03 | Worker's Compensation Insurance Horror stories from the front lines of business by John Campbell 6/6/03 | CalPERS Goosed Pension Fund to Justify Benefits by Daniel Weintraub 6/5/03 | The New Glass Ceiling Stellar credentials and a "well-qualified" rating from the American Bar Association, its highest, following her nomination to the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals should have made the road to confirmation an easy one for Judge Carolyn Kuhl. by John C. Eastman 6/4/03 | Theology Lessons with Jim Carrey Bruce Almighty by Marshall Allen | OCTA, Still Off-Track by the Editors 6/5/03 | Fathers & Sons, Under the Sea Finding Nemo by Thomas Hibbs 6/5/03 | L.A. Times Fighting Liberal Bias? John Carroll is the editor of The Los Angeles Times. On May 22, he sent a memo to all of his section editors. by Hugh Hewitt 4/6/03 | Davis Recall: Be Careful What You Wish For The effort could stain state politics with the bitterness that afflicts Washington. by Bill Whalen 6/4/03 | Slip Sliding Away "It was one of those under-the-radar bills that just slipped by," San Jose's Union School District Superintendent Phil Quon said of a measure Gov. Gray Davis signed before last year's election. by Debra Saunders 6/4/03 | Heat Wave Hits Capitol, But Politics of Budget Remain Frozen by Dan Walters 6/4/03 | Windfall for Politicians Democrats think $2.4 billion in federal funds is theirs alone by the Editors 6/4/03 | A Reverberating Proposition A tax-cut in California in 1978 is still paying dividends. by Bruce Bartlett 4/6/03 | A Taskmaster Heads North Although cash-strapped California could ill afford a $100-million expenditure this year to bail out a school district that had mangled its finances, the state couldn't leave Oakland children without an education. by the Editors 6/4/03 | Malibu Babs: Snapshots of an Eco-Hypocrite People who live in 10,000-square-foot oceanfront mansions shouldn't throw stones. by Michelle Malkin 6/4/03 | Race Still Divides Berkeley by Carrie Sturrock 6/4/03 | Total Recall The campaign to recall California Governor Gray Davis may succeed, admit a growing number of California Democrats by George Neumayr 6/3/03 | A Better Way An alternative to proposed car tax hike by the Editors 6/3/03 | Twenty-five Years After Prop. 13 by the Editors 6/3/03 | Prop. 13 This Friday, June 6, marks the 25th anniversary of one of the most important political/economic events in American history: Proposition 13. by Bruce Bartlett 6/3/03 | Democrats Recall Peace, Prosperity and Clintons by Daniel Weintraub 6/3/03 | Horowitz vs. Hollywood Tinseltown leftists try to silence David Horowitz in the name of "free speech." by Paul Bond 6/3/03 | Capitol Sees Stark Conflict Over Protecting Californians' Privacy by Dan Walters 6/3/03 | People Must Demand Recall After the Damage Davis Has Caused In One Term, Can State Afford to Go Through Another? by Shawn Steel 6/2/03 | Pomp, Sanctimony – And Hope The Ironies of a “Liberal” Education by Carol Platt Liebau 6/2/03 | Gov. Train Wreck This could be the summer of Gray Davis' discontent. Even as a recall campaign picks up speed against the California governor, things continue to go badly for him and the state he has the Editors 6/2/03 | 'Conscience' Is No Cause for Judges to Flout Laws May a U.S. Court of Appeals judge refuse to follow binding U.S. Supreme Court precedent if the judge believes that the precedent is unconscionable? by Howard J. Bashman 6/2/03 | The O.J.-ification of Laci by Debra Saunders 6/2/03 | Unintended Results of Policy Choices Litter the Landscape The solitary thread of consistency in California's complex, dysfunctional, ironic -- and often just plain wacky -- politics is that they faithfully obey the law of unintended consequences. by Dan Walters 6/1/03 | Vote to Derail CenterLine by the Editors 6/1/03 | CenterLine's Many Myths Example: It would relieve congestion. Well, no - according to OCTA itself. by Jack Mallinckrodt 6/1/03 | It Speaks Spanish, Not Republican by Frank del Olmo 6/1/03 | State Budget Crunch A 1991 lesson in cutting California's deficit. by Larry N. Gerston 6/1/03 | Spend, Tax, Beg, Borrow, Steal A spending addiction of unparalleled proportions by Ray Haynes 5/31/03 | Program Downgrade Matrix Reloaded lacks the beautiful sparseness of its precursor by Andrew Coffin | Mr. Deeds Goes to Wall Street Hollywood's bizarre lessons on corporate finance. by Stephen W. Stanton 5/30/03
[go to Front Page Archive Index]


And some
Lingering Observations

INSIDE CRO//TimesGrinder
L.A. Times Fighting Liberal Bias?

by Hugh Hewitt 4/6/03 | John Carroll is the editor of The Los Angeles Times. On May 22, he sent a memo to all of his section editors. It is an extraordinary document, and the website was the first to make it available to the public. | Carroll's subject was liberal bias in the paper. [more inside]

FABULOUS BUDGET/From National Review
A Reverberating Proposition
A tax-cut in California in 1978 is still paying dividends.
by Bruce Bartlett 4/6/03 | This Friday, June 6, marks the 25th anniversary of one of the most important political/economic events in American history: Proposition 13. This initiative, which was approved by the voters of California on this date in 1978, sparked a “tax revolt” that spread throughout the country and continues to reverberate today. [more at National Review]

Twenty-five Years After Prop. 13
by the Editors 6/3/03 | Proposition 13, California's monumental tax-limiting initiative, celebrates its 25th anniversary on Friday amid the sort of hostility and hosannas that rarely accompany laws or initiatives only months after their passage, let alone a quarter of a century afterward. [more at OC Register]

Prop. 13
by Bruce Bartlett 6/3/03 | This Friday, June 6, marks the 25th anniversary of one of the most important political/economic events in American history: Proposition 13. This initiative, which was approved by the voters of California on this date in 1978, sparked a "tax revolt" that spread throughout the country and continues to reverberate today. [more at Town Hall]

INSIDE CRO/ Recall Follies
People Must Demand Recall

After the Damage Davis Has Caused In One Term, Can State Afford to Go Through Another?
by Shawn Steel 6/2/03 | At the beginning of the 20th century, a progressive revolt added the rights of initiative, referendum and recall to the state constitution in order to give citizens recourse against the powerful special-interest groups that had made state government their handmaiden. | As we begin the 21st century, we again find ourselves faced with corruption, incompetence and the paramountcy of special-interest influence, this time centered in a single individual: Gov. Gray Davis. His continuously scandal-plagued, calamitous administration has brought our state to the brink of disaster, and it's time to take those tools of democratic accountability in hand and recall Davis. | Recalls have been threatened before, but in my decades of political involvement never has one caught fire like the current effort to recall Davis. | In the last few weeks, a broad-based, ad hoc coalition of activists, public-policy groups, business people and ordinary citizens has begun to coalesce around this effort, ranging from the anti-tax group People's Advocate on the right to Pat Caddell on the left. | It reflects a disgust and disaffection with Davis that transcends partisan affiliation, age, gender, race or ethnicity. [more inside]

INSIDE CRO the Shadow Governor
Memo to My Wife
by Tom McClintock 5/29/03 | Hi Honey --Since you've let me take over our household finances, I'm happy to report that our family budget is balanced, I've saved thousands of dollars, and I've kept us in the style to which I would like to become accustomed. | You might wonder how I've been able to do all this. I just followed the easy steps that Gov. Gray Davis outlined in his May Budget Revision. I know you're upset because I spent nearly $11,000 more than we took in this year. You really need to keep things in perspective. Gray spent nearly $11 billion more than he took in, and he's not worried. I've taken out a second on our house and Gray's taken out the largest state loan in American history to cover the difference, so just relax. | I'm being fiscally conservative and socially liberal with our budget, just like the Governor. I've cut thousands of dollars from our expenses without affecting our standard of living in the slightest. I know you're skeptical, but it was really very easy. I just added a new jet ski to my wish list and then scratched it out. That saves $5,500. Pretty clever, huh? You can actually do this in any amount - Gray "cut" $5.5 billion from the state budget exactly the same way. [more inside]

RECALL FOLLIES/From Weekly Standard
Wild and Wooly in California
The prospect of a recall vote on Governor Gray Davis has the state's political establishment in an uproar.
by Hugh Hewitt 5/21/03
| The strangest season in California's long, strange political trip has begun with a declaration of candidacy for a governorship that isn't vacant, a withdrawal from a Senate campaign that hasn't really begun, and a rumor mill spinning out of control. [more at Weekly Standard]

Recalling Our Principles

Why the Davis Recall is Worth Reconsidering
by Carol Platt Liebau 5/9/03 | It’s hard to like Governor Gray Davis. Like the stereotype of a bad politician, he is self-righteous, cynical, manipulative and grasping – without possessing any of the typical politician’s compensating traits of charm, humor or even sheer entertainment value (think Rev. Al Sharpton). | So it’s no wonder that the movement to recall Davis has caught on like wildfire. For the first time in memory, it seems at least possible that a sitting California governor could actually be removed from office. In fact, as of April 30, recall supporters reported that more than 100,000 of the roughly 897,000 signatures needed to place a recall on the ballot had been collected. | The success of the “Recall Davis” movement is thanks largely to the grassroots. Over 400,000 recall petitions are currently in circulation, with tens of thousands having been sent out in response to citizen requests, and the “Recall Gray Davis” web site estimates that it has logged over 8 million hits since it went online on February 4, 2003. The California Republican Party has endorsed the effort only cautiously, and no single big donor has yet stepped forward to bankroll the campaign entirely, although Rep. Darrell Issa recently indicated that he would offer a six-figure contribution to the recall. | But in an era when recall petitions can be downloaded on the internet, and given the governor’s 56% disapproval rate even within his own party (according to a recent Field poll), a grassroots effort may be enough. Even in the San Jose area, a stronghold of support for Davis (he defeated Bill Simon there last November, 55% to 32%), a full 36% would support recall, with 46% opposing, according to Democratic pollster David Binder. Statewide, a recent Field poll reveals that if a recall initiative were actually placed on the ballot, 46% of voters would dump Davis, with only 43% being willing to retain him in office. | The thought of handing Davis his walking papers is, frankly, an intoxicating one. [more inside]


Kuehl-Care is wrong Rx for Californians
Sally C. Pipes
Pacific Research Institute

Boycott Jim Hahn's L.A.
by Arnold Steinberg
The Washington Times

Feds Shouldn't Bail Out State
Aid from D.C. would only prompt lawmakers to overspend even more
by Richard Vedder
OC Register


Why Hollywood Hates Conservatives III
by Steve Feinberg
more at FrontPage Magazine

Saving Democracy in California
by Ken Masugi

A Boy Catches a Terroist Gang
SLA brought to justice
by Adam Sparks SF Gate

Eight Ways To Solve The Budget Crisis
by Adam Sparks SF Gate

Why Simon Lost
From the beginning, and in the end.
By Arnold Steinberg National Review

The Authoritative Guide to Why Bill Simon Lost
What Really Happened in California
By Arnold Steinberg Human Events

Simon Should Have Won
The state GOP has lost track of its responsibility to voters, letting extraneous concerns crowd out attending to political basics.
by John Kurzweil
California Political Review


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