The Declarer (Floyd McWilliams' Blog)

Saturday, October 23, 2010


Let's take a quick look at the California propositions on the ballot in 2010, and how I would vote:

Proposition 19, legalize and tax marijuana: Yes. Marijuana should be legal. It's no more unhealthy than tobacco or alcohol.

Proposition 20, Congressional districts to be redrawn by committee: No. Meet the new gerrymander, same as the old gerrymander. To be honest whenever there a proposition tinkers with the mechanics of governments I look to see who is in favor of it. I dislike the proponents more than the opponents.

Proposition 21, increase vehicle taxes $18 per year to fund state parks: No. Why not increase park fees to fund state parks? Why should I spend $36 more per year because California cannot allocate a small fraction of its immense revenues to fund parks?

Proposition 22, prohibit Sacramento from grabbing local funds: Yes. Who could possibly be against this, I thought to myself before reading the Ballotpedia summary. Answer: Pretty much every public employee union in the state.

Proposition 23, suspend global warming emissions cuts until unemployment falls below 5.5%. Yes. There are very few propositions that I like; this is one of them. Not only does it strike a blow against the warmists, not only does it send the state government to its room until it finishes its homework, but it reminds the voters that California's current leadership has saddled the state with a terrible economy. Cutting unemployment in half would not reach the 5.5% target!

(By the way the signs opposing this measure warn us that "Texas oil" is out to subvert California. Considering the relative performance of Texas and California government, I am in favor of all the Lone Star State subversion we can get.)

Proposition 24, eliminate business tax breaks: No. Why does California have 12.4% unemployment? Because the ballot proposition system allows the teacher's union to attempt to impose new taxes, driving even more jobs out of the state. I can't even figure out what they are trying to accomplish. Maybe the union has to pander to a large proportion of its members that have a slavering hatred for capitalism.

(This proposition will surely go down in flames, but it can't make business owners feel any better about investing in California.)

Proposition 25, state budget requires majority vote: No. The current 2/3 requirement is one of very few impediments to California's out of control spending.

Proposition 26, taxes and fees require 2/3 vote: Yes. This is the opposite of 25, closing loopholes that allow the legislature to impose fees by majority vote.

Proposition 27, return redistricting to the legislature: No. Meet the old gerrymander, same as the new gerrymander.

One thing I like to do before every election is to make sure I'm on the opposite side of the San Jose Mercury News editorial board, a tired old liberal rag that never saw a tax that couldn't be higher or a government office that couldn't be larger. A prediction, before scanning their endorsement page: The Merc will recommend the opposite of the above, except on 22 and 27.

Result:

I called 8 out of 9. The Merc agrees with me on 24 (remove tax breaks) as well. They're not the state employee's union's lapdogs ... but on the other hand they recommend a straight Democratic ticket, including the odious Bill Lockyer, who said in 2001 he wished he could "personally escort [Enron head Ken] Lay to an 8-by-10 cell that he could share with a tattooed dude who says, 'Hi, my name is Spike, honey."


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