I have got to stop reading the paper. I can’t seem to do so, though. Maybe I will just have to cancel the damn thing.
I sit with my first coffee and read a huge headline to the effect: Massive Budget Cuts Proposed.
The people of the state just the other day voted down every damn one of the initiatives on a special ballot designed to produce more revenue or to redirect some revenue already on hand towards rescuing the state from its financial morass. A projected debt of about 22 billion, which might mean, if money is not found, that the state will stop paying its bills this July.
The people did pass one punitive and purely retributional measure saying that those in government cannot give themselves a raise during a time of budget crisis.
Fine. The legislators deserved it. But rage and retribution are no substitute for reason.
Also on the front page, an opinion piece making three recommendations for recovery and I agree with each one.
A) Get rid of the law that requires a two-thirds majority to pass laws having to do with taxation. This law has produced a bottled neck, allowing a minority of rabid, reactionary right-wingers to block any sensible taxes or even tax reform. These lunatics have apparently taken a blood oath to never again raise any tax, no matter what.
B) Get rid of term limits. I remember when this utterly stupid idea swept the nation back, I don’t know when, thinking: Term limits? What do we need those for. We already have "term limits;" those are called elections and that is when you vote out people you don’t want and in the people you do want. So, now because of those term limits, the legislators are constantly churned. They can’t build up the knowledge necessary to really work the machine or to build up those alliances that might actually move it in another direction. Additionally, because they are always new, they seem more prone to giving into special interests. Term limits has built idiocy and a lack of commitment to any long term vision right into the system.
C) Over turn and get rid of all remnants of Proposition 13. Hard to remember that one–Prop 13, clear back in the late 70’s; but that was the grand daddy of them all, the tax payer revolution, with California once again out in the forefront and leading the rest of the nation straight to perdition. Prop. 13 was the beginning of the wave that crested when Ronald Regan (another California idiot) came to office and claimed that believing in government and what it could do was unpatriotic.
Will any of these recommendations come into being. Not likely.
Jeez, reading those recommendations was like a trip down bad memory lane.