Claremont Insider: Just Say NO

Monday, May 4, 2009

Just Say NO

to Propositions 1A, 1B, 1C, 1D, 1E, and 1F

We now turn to the statewide ballot propositions, put on the ballot by the Legislature and the Governor for a special May 19th election. Taken all in all, these six measures, 1A through 1F are indicative of the very low regard the governing elites hold for the electorate. They deserve to fail.

Really, nobody believes the arguments for these ridiculous propositions. For example, the well-funded "Budget Reform Now", a coalition of taxpayers (hah!), business, labor, educators, public safety, seniors, Jerry Perenchio*, and Governor Schwarzenegger's "Dream Team" (what??), is so desperate it is selling these measures as "drawing the line on out-of-control state spending". Or the first flyer mailed by this ballot committee claiming "families have to live within their means. Our state government should, too."

Honestly, the politicians who put these measures on this special election ballot are campaigning for the measures by attacking themselves--the politicians. This election is all about papering over the immediate and structural issues and kicking the budget ball down the street to 2011.

Anyone with the slightest sense realizes that Propostion 1A is a huge tax increase--opponents say the largest in the history of the State of California--disguised as a spending cap. The framers of the ballot statement, with the complicity of the Legislative Analyst, conveniently neglect to mention that key fact in the ballot summary.

Proposition 1B, a corrupt political deal with the powerful teachers unions to keep them from opposing 1A, makes short-term savings in the next two years with a potential for "state costs of billions of dollars annually thereafter."

Proposition 1C steals money from the lottery to dump down the General Fund rathole, "borrowing" from future lottery profits. We've always thought the lottery was a tax on people who couldn't do arithmetic, but the People, in Their wisdom, enacted it. Our own State Senator, Bob Huff, authored the ballot argument against 1C.

Proposition 1D is another quick fix cash infusion to the General Fund for the short term, attempting to circumvent previous voter-approved initiatives on Children and Families.

Proposition 1E
raids the Mental Health Services Act (Proposition 64 in 2004) programs of a half billion dollars over the next two years with "corresponding reduction in funding available for Mental Health Services Act programs."

Proposition 1F is a silly "bone" thrown at the ignorant voters by the Legislature, claiming to force politicians to do their jobs with the threat of withheld salary increases. While we think politicians ought not to be paid at all, this petty proposition is included to give a patina of propriety to the whole sorry lot of them. Fuggedabboudit.

Even the League of Women Voters--and we're no fans of the League--agree with us on the key measure: NO on Proposition 1A. And 1C, 1D, and 1E.

The last day to register for the May 19th Special Election is today, May 4th. Your voter registration document must be postmarked not later than today. Claremont City Hall is the most convenient place to take care of this today, in person.

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*Perenchio is an ├╝ber-wealthy Hollywood-type with a penchant for privacy.