FlashReport Weblog on California Politics

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Ed Ring

Deceptive and Misleading Claims – How Government Unions Fool the Public

California’s public sector unions collect and spend well over $1.0 billion per year. When you have that much money, you can hire thousands of skilled professionals to wage campaigns, litigate, lobby, negotiate, and communicate. You can hire the best public relations firms money can buy. You can commission research studies that spin facts to support your agenda. You can silence voices of dissent, voices of reason, voices of reform, with an avalanche of misinformation. And it works.

Here, then, for what it’s worth, is a “top ten” list of some of the biggest deceptions and misleading claims made by California’s government unions.

1 – Government unions are protecting the middle class.

FALSE. Government unions are protecting government workers at the expense of the private sector middle class. The agenda of government unions is more wages and benefits for government workers, and more hiring of government workers. To adhere to this agenda, failure of government programs still constitutes success for these unions. More laws, more regulations, and more government programs equates to more unionized government workers,… Read More

Katy Grimes

Two CA Republicans Helped Pass Revived Assisted Suicide Bill

It’s a dark day in California politics when a bill supporting life is killed before even being assigned to a legislative committee, and a bill pushing assisted suicide gets Republican votes.

Two California Repoublicans helped pass the revived assisted suicide bill, thereby helping Democrats fast track it.

It’s as if some have been reading from Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals: “If you push a negative hard enough, it will push through and become a positive.”

What’s up is down right now in the California Legislature.

“Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” Alinsky

Following the release of several horrific videos exposing top Planned Parenthood directors negotiating to sell aborted fetus organs and tissue to the highest bidders, Assemblyman Jim Patterson… Read More

Jon Coupal


During Arnold Schwarzenegger’s first campaign for governor, one of his biggest backers, super wealthy Warren Buffet, famously said his property taxes on his Laguna Beach home were not high enough. The comment caused California homeowners to question Arnold’s bona fides as a conservative so he threatened to make Buffet do 500 sit ups for his transgression. While the controversy blew over, there seems to be no record of Buffet making a voluntary additional payment to the county tax collector to assuage his conscious.

Most California homeowners don’t have Buffet’s wealth and rightfully believe they are already paying enough to finance local services. But still, the question of just how California property taxes measure up against other states is the source of a lot of angst and disinformation. (Rumors have it that some on the far left are preoccupied with this subject as they look for opportunities to force the “evil landowning elite” to pay their “fair share.”)

For years, the curious could consult information made available by the Tax Foundation, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank whose mission is to educate taxpayers about sound tax policy and the… Read More

Katy Grimes

Labor Day California: No Right To Work, No Right To Vote

While California Gov. Jerry Brown has ignored thousands of California farm workers who don’t want to be unionized,Wisconsin became the 25th Right-to-Work state.

Happy Labor Day Gerawan farm workers. In one of the most significant labor relations fights in the country, proceedings have turned ugly, with many questioning the legal tactics and scruples of the Agricultural Labor Relations Board.

TheAgricultural Labor Relations Boardsays it exists to protect the rights ofallagricultural employees, including those not wanting labor organization representation, as is the case with Gerawan Farming employees. However, Gerawan farming employees say they have not received any assistance from the ALRB.

Whenever they can, labor unions historically try to gain control over entry into the labor market. “Such measures are for the purpose of holding down the supply of labor in the field and thereby enabling those fortunate enough to be admitted to it, to earn higher incomes,” wrote George Reisman of the… Read More

Richard Rider

Notice all the mega-hurricanes since Katrina? Me neither. MSM mum on their 2005 doomsday projections.

Evidence of the liberal bias of MSM is overwhelming. But sometimes the best examples is what these networks and newspapers DON’T report. Consider this example.

The media gave the 10thanniversary of Hurricane Katrina extensive play last month. Naturally there was heavy emphasis on the failure of FEMA, with a generous amount of blame dumped on hapless George Bush (none of which I have a problem with).

But what the MSM has largely ignored are the doomsday predictions all the networks were hyping after Hurricane Katrina — the coming massive hurricanes from global warming. Katrina was declared to be definitely the product of global warming, and just the start a series of disastrous mega-hurricanes — all caused by global warming.

Unfortunately for MSM and global warming alarmists, it didn’t happen. Not even close. In the following 10 years there was a DEARTH of U.S. hurricanes, or big hurricanes.

Okay, okay — they made a mistake. The smug assertions and prognostications were poppycock. Hey, anyone can be gloriously, fatuously, obnoxiously wrong.

But what’s… Read More

James V. Lacy

Carl Olson, RIP

Conservative activist Carl Laurence Olson, 71, passed away quietly in the San Fernando Valley on August 23 of multiple myeloma, and his smiling face and unabashed zeal for the conservative cause will be missed. I first met Carl when we were both active in conservative and Republican volunteer organizations in California in the 1970s. Carl had an outstanding background he did not brag much about. He was proud to have been a Lt. Commander in the Navy, and would talk about that, and he served in Vietnam, and worked at NBC in Burbank for eight years. But he also graduated from Pomona College and held an MS in Journalism and an MBA from the Ivy League’s Columbia University in New York City. Those are pretty big accomplishments, of which he was rather modest.

After serving in the Reagan Administration at the Department of Health and Human Services, Carl came back to California and became active in several nonprofit advocacy organizations he founded or co-founded, including State Department Watch, and the Fund for Stockholders’ Rights. He sued the California Automobile Association in a long, drawn out litigation for essentially rigging their board of… Read More

Arnold Steinberg

The Conservative Meltdown

Arnold Steinberg, a political strategist and analyst, is the author of graduate texts on politics and media.

USA Today reported nearly five months ago that the visionary and brilliant libertarian entrepreneurs Charles Koch and David Koch and their team had identified five presidential candidates with the “right message and a good chance of getting elected.” Those five were Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, former Florida governor Jeb Bush, and U.S. Senators Ted Cruz (Texas), Rand Paul (Kentucky) and Marco Rubio (Florida).

About the same time, I had discussed the growing field of possible candidates with leaders of the conservative movement, and also conservative journalists and elected officials. Several focused on Walker because “he took on the unions…and we need a governor, not a senator who hasn’t run anything.” Some hoped that Walker or someone else would unite… Read More

BOE Member George Runner

Top Five Tax Traps Small Business Owners Need to Avoid

As Vice Chair of the California State Board of Equalization (BOE), I regularly hear from small business owners who are caught off guard by tax liabilities. This isn’t surprising given the complexity of California’s tax laws. Even the most well-meaning, knowledgeable business owner can run into problems.

Because of this, I regularly host free small business and nonprofit tax seminars throughout my district to help business owners avoid these “tax traps.” (In fact, we’re hosting a series of events in the coming months designed to help small business owners be successful. Learn more at www.boe.ca.gov/events.)

For those of you unable to attend one of these free seminars, here are the top five tax traps to avoid:

1. Getting Stuck with a Prior Owner’s Tax Bill

Buying a business or stock of goods? You could become responsible for the seller’s unpaid tax, interest and penalties up to the purchase price of the business or stock of goods. Before buying a business, protect yourself from this liability by requesting a certificate of tax clearance by… Read More

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