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FlashReport Weblog on California Politics

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Richard Rider

The “digital divide” is a fiction

Remember the “digital divide”? Supposedly poor folks were getting left behind in the electronic age, as they couldn’t afford a computer, etc., etc.

Well, some folks ARE getting “left behind,” but it’s not from a lack of hardware or software. Or even Internet access.

Maybe eight years ago I wrote a column about this canard. At the time, there were numerous options: 1. Used, “outdated” computers sold for a pittance. 2. Free computer/Internet access at libraries, schools and work. 3. Charities that gave free used computers to needy folks. 4. Quality free software — such as the excellent “OpenOffice” clone of Office Windows (which I use today).

I asserted that a time was soon coming when one could buy a rudimentary computer for $100. I was ridiculed by critics. Turns out, I was too pessimistic. Recently I saw a new computer “on sale” (there’s always one of these sales items) at Fry’s for $54 — and free shipping.

Yeah, yeah, it’s not much of computer compared to the beasts some of us own. It’s basically… Read More

Richard Rider

Low income teenagers: Follow these 3 rules that together all but guarantee you’ll not be poor

It may be hard for many poor teenagers to become rich, but it’s NOT too hard for most to join the middle class — IF they follow this simple advice from a Brookings study. https://www.brookings.edu/opinions/three-simple-rules-poor-teens-should-follow-to-join-the-middle-class/

EXCERPT:Drill into children the message that in a free society, they enter adulthood with three major responsibilities:

1. At least finish high school. 2. Get a full-time job. 3. Wait until age 21 to get married and have children.

Our research shows that of American adults who followed these three simple rules, only about 2 percent are in poverty and nearly 75 percent have joined the middle class (defined as earning around $55,000 or more per year). There are surely influences other than these principles at play, but following them guides a young adult away from poverty and toward the middleRead More

Katy Grimes

The Worst Kept Secret in Hollywood is also in CA’s Capitol

Sexual harassment is apparently a problem in California’s State Capitol, despite voluminous binders of sexual harassment rules and training guides. However, the ‘casting couch’ is used in many industries besides Hollywood, and especially in politics.

“Me Too” is Growing

More than 140 women working in and around the California State Capitol have written a letter claiming to have been sexually harassed inside the Capitol by lawmakers and staff. The list has now grown to 300.

“For four years in a row, the Democratic-controlled Legislature has quietly buried a bill—sponsored by a Republican assemblywoman—that would give legislative staff expanded whistleblower protections,” CalMatters… Read More

David Kersten

Is Republican-Lite a Winning Strategy?

It has been well documented that California Republican voter registration has declined significantly over the past few decades, and there have been no shortage of renewed calls for the California Republican Party to become more like the California Democratic Party—effectively becoming “Republican Lite.”

U.S. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield), the highest ranking Republican leader in California, urged the California GOP to reject becoming “Republican Lite” at the party’s most recent Republican convention, according to a report by the LA Times.

“My advice to those Assembly members in Sacramento: You will not win a majority by thinking you’ll be Democrat-light. You will win the majority by showing the differences in the party,” McCarthy said.

“You will not win the majority by voting against your own principles on a Democratic policy, and let Democratic targets vote no. You will not win the majority if you’re concerned about being able to stand behind a podium with a… Read More

Katy Grimes

MAGLITE Company Shines A Light On Breast Cancer Awareness In “Pinktober”

The White House and Empire State Building were lit in pink earlier this month. New York city police wore pink ball caps. Celebrities have been passing out pink ribbons. Professional athletes wear pink accessories or the pink ribbons.

For nearly a decade the iconic Maglite flashlight company, Mag Instrument Inc., has not only observed Breast Cancer Awareness Month by partnering with National Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc.® since 2008 Mag Instrument Inc. has donated more than $377,000 to NBCF.

Most of us have been touched by breast cancer, with a family member, friend or colleague. Breast cancer is the number one cause… Read More

Ron Nehring

Russia’s information warfare aimed to imitate, manipulate conservatives

Alexander Hamilton, writing in Federalist 68, warned that corruption of America’s political system would most likely arise from the desire of “foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils.”

Russia’s ongoing work to manipulate and undermine our society through social media is multidimensional and ongoing.

Two aspects of this campaign are particularly offensive.

First, some background.

By now it has been firmly established – beyond a doubt – that the Russian government backed a comprehensive information warfare campaign to twist and turn American public opinion and discourse to serve there interests. While the impact on the candidates in the 2016 general election garners a great deal of attention, that was only subset of a broader effort.

Those with any doubt about the Russian government efforts should read these reports: APT28: A Window to Russia’s Cyber Espionage Operations?, APT28: At the Center of theRead More

Katy Grimes

Numbers Show The Deck is Stacked for Republicans in California’s Legislature

Elected Republicans represent nearly a third of California’s legislators, but are only getting 18 percent of their bills passed, for eventual consideration by Gov. Jerry Brown. This is despite the fact that they represent nearly 40 percent of the voters who cast ballots in the last election. And even worse, Brown so far has only approved about 16.5 percent of Republican bills, while Democrats saw 83.4 percent of their bills signed into law.

A few revealing statistics surrounding the outcomes for 2,550 new bills introduced during the recent 2017 session in the California Legislature point out which party gets to feast, and which can expect leftover crumbs.

As only the… Read More

Ray Haynes

WHAT!!!!?…ARE THEY REALLY THAT CRAZY???!!!

A man enters a hotel room in Las Vegas, loaded to the gills with guns. He installs surveillance equipment so he can see if cops or security guards are coming to find him. He loads the guns, and looks out his window at a crowd gathering below. He quietly loads his guns, and stares at the people below. He raises the gun to his shoulder, breaks his window, and then starts methodically killing the people below, shooting them at random with no thought as to who they are, and who is hurting with his behavior. His actions are cold, calculating, evil, and destructive. He is a murderer.

If this happened in California, what would our Democrat colleagues in the Legislature do? Reduce his sentence. His anti-social behavior is not his fault. We let him buy the guns, it’s our fault. If he couldn’t buy the guns, he couldn’t or wouldn’t kill people. So don’t punish him more, take away everyone’s guns. Are they crazy??

How do I know that’s what the Dems would do?? Look at what they did. About a week ago, Governor Brown signed SB 620 (Bradford), it was chaptered on October 11, 2017. SB 620, according to its analysis,… Read More

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