FlashReport Weblog on California Politics

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Congressman John Campbell

“Increasing Income Disparity”

State of the Economy, Part 3 – “Increasing Income Disparity”: Last week, I laid out for you the case that “income inequality” should really be called “increasing income disparity” and suggested that it is a worldwide phenomenon. I also debunked commonly expressed “solutions” for this problem you often hear from leaders in Washington. However, I have not yet presented solutions of my own. Before I do, let’s first examine the factors at work here that I believe are causing this phenomenon.

There were a number of serious recessions during the Industrial Revolution of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. No one alive today has ever talked to anyone who experienced the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. So, with the exception of historians, it doesn’t get as much coverage in contemporary discussion as say, the Great Depression. What you may not know is that the Industrial Revolution caused a large job displacement at first. When the jobs on the farm went away, they were not immediately replaced in a factory. It took time before people figured out what to do with the extra disposable… Read More

Ed Ring

Detroit’s Pension Reform Sets an Example for California Cities

“I see a beautiful city and a brilliant people rising from this abyss.”

– Charles Dickens, Tale of Two Cities

Traveling through suburban Detroit, a sprawling city of 143 square miles whose population has dropped from nearly two million to less than 700,000, you can often imagine you are in rural Tennessee. Rutted narrow roads bend past groves of cottonwood, oak and silver maple. Deer and jack rabbits forage in tall grass. Until you pass a burned out ruin of a home, not yet removed, obscured by greenery, it is difficult to imagine that these neighborhoods once were filled with homes, set 35 feet apart and carpeting the land for mile after mile.

According to the so-called “right wing propaganda machine,” the tale of Detroit’s demise is attributed to the unchecked power of labor unions. Private sector unions were inflexible in the face of foreign competition, driving Detroit’s auto industry into irreversible decline. Public sector unions gobbled up every dime of taxpayer revenue they could bully and intimidate politicians into granting, further straining the finances of an already imploding city. Financially unsustainable… Read More

Katy Grimes

LAUSD Teachers Demand 17.6 Percent Raise… Don’t Yawn, read on

Does a salary increase of 17.6 percent translate into 17.6 percent better job performance? Chances are, it does not.

The Los Angeles Unified School District and Service Employees International Union recently cut a dubious deal to increase 33,000 minimum-wage non-teaching workers’ pay to $15 an hour, nearly doubling some workers’ salaries. I wrote about it July 7 in “Dubious Deal Between Los Angeles School District and SEIU.

Only 10 days later, the newly elected president of Los Angeles Unified School District’s teachers union, United Teachers Los Angeles, announced a demand for a 17.6 percent… Read More

Katy Grimes

What Drought? Govt. Doesn’t Live By Drought Rules

If 80 percent of California is in extreme drought, as the Los Angeles Times just reported, where is the data and evidence?

City and county governments are still running sprinklers and wasting water as though there is no drought, yet threatening and even imposing penalties on citizens who violate unclear water policies.

The State Water Resources Control Board adopted new drought policy and regulations to give local agencies the authority to fine water wasters up to $500 a day.

Who are these board members,comfortable with imposing fines on citizens?

Water Board memberDorene D’Adamo, was also on the… Read More

Neel Kahskari: A Candidate Without A Party

Of course, Neel Kashkari, the GOP candidate for California governor against incumbent Jerry Brown in the November election, is a member of the Republican party and is officially endorsed by it. When I say that he is a candidate without a party, I mean that he is not backed by his party in a way that could promote his victory.

Kashkari, who trailed Brown by 35 points in the June 3 primary, is not expected by anyone to win, and that includes his own party leadership, as I prove below. He is playing the time honored tradition of candidate expected to lose, for the sake of giving his party some representation. My point is that what the state party needs now is a GOP candidate to win a statewide office, not just run a show-campaign designed to manage the party as a shadow of its former self. A losing candidate will not give California what it needs: a viable opposition party.

Kashkari did take some advice I offered in Flashreport concerning… Read More

Jon Coupal

LAWMAKERS FOCUS ON THE FRIVOLOUS

Given California’s many serious problems, including high unemployment, a listless economy and drought, one might think our Sacramento politicians would not have time on their hands to promote laws that have no force or effect in California. One might also think it unwise, at a time when our state is surviving on temporary tax increases (Proposition 30), to spend millions to place such a pointless law on the statewide ballot. One would think that state lawmakers would have more sense than to waste time and money on such legislation, but they would be wrong.

The California Legislature recently approved Senate Bill 1272, which would submit to California voters an “advisory” ballot proposition advocating a change to the U.S. Constitution that is intended to overturn the U.S. Supreme Court… Read More

Katy Grimes

United Farm Workers Labor Union Stages Phony Protest

Posing as Gerawan Farming employees, a small group of other farm workers and United Farm Worker union posers protested a meeting of the Agricultural Labor Relations Board Wednesday. Gerawan workers sent out a press release making sure the public knows that the protestors at the Agricultural Labor Relations Board meeting in Sacramento Wednesday were not Gerawan employees. “Every time hundreds of us real Gerawan employees demonstrate, we see a very small group of UFW counter demonstrators, and most of them we don’t recognize,” said Silvia Lopez, a Gerawan employee for more than 16 years. Lopez is also the leader of the thousands of workers who are fighting to decertify the UFW at Gerawan.

Gerawan employees have staged a series of walkouts and protests against the UFW and ALRB. The last protest was July 9 at the Visalia office of the ALRB. Videos of that genuine protest can be seen at the links below:

<iframe width=”420″ height=”315″ src=”//www.youtube.com/embed/n_qA9T2rnxg” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

<iframe width=”420″ height=”315″… Read More

Katy Grimes

CA Air Resources Board – No Legislative Oversight, No Rules, and Nothing to Stop It

The California Air Resources Board is a state agency completely out of control. With no oversight by the Legislature, as the California Constitution calls for, Mary Nichols, ARB Chairman, is setting policy on behalf of this regulatory body, for the entire state.

ARB Goes It Alone

The ARB has taken a great deal of liberty, particularly with its interpretation of AB 32, California’s Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006. TheARB devised a cap-and-trade system whereby it holds a quarterly auction program “requiring many California employers to bid significant amounts of money for the privilege of continuing to emit carbon dioxide — or be faced with closing their doors in California, laying off their… Read More

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