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Bruce Bialosky

What Happened to Our Civility?

We see an increased level of crime in our country. We see an increased level of negative political discourse. More importantly in our daily actions with the people around us, we see a degradation of human interaction and consideration for people in general. That has been on full display recently in one of my main hobbies – attending concerts. During the pandemic, the principal thing I missed more than anything else was live musical performances. Most people think of me as a baseball person, but my main activity is music. Music is on at my home, my car, and my office as much as possible. There is nothing like a live performance though for me. At concerts I have seen the deterioration of people’s behavior over a period of years. It is especially fascinating because the price of concert tickets has soared – due in part because of people’s willingness to pay but also to compensate for the artists’ lost revenue on CD sales. Regardless, one must wonder why people act like they are in their own homes while surrounded by others trying to listen to a performance. Why are they loudly chatting about recent shopping trips instead of listening to the… Read More

Bruce Bialosky

Goodbye Ms. Pelosi

As soon as the news broke, a cavalcade of plaudits started coming in from left-of-center politicians and journalists lauding the accomplishments of Nancy Pelosi as Speaker of the House and leader of her party. Ms. Pelosi had two four-year stints as Speaker. Let’s look at her years as leader of the House and second in line to the Presidency. Ms. Pelosi is being heralded by her cronies and the Left-wing press as the most consequential Speaker in history. A large part of that is because of legislation passed during her terms. They seem to have forgotten Democrat Sam Rayburn who served for seventeen years between 1940 and 1961. He was the Speaker during two major wars and engineered the first civil rights legislation since Reconstruction. He worked with President Eisenhower with funding for and building of the national highway system. Unlike Speaker Pelosi, he worked with the opposition party and President. But Ms. Pelosi is the current darling. Probably her most significant act of recent was traveling to Taiwan in the face of relentless pressure from the Chinese overlords. It was truly a shining moment, but we all get some things right. Probably her… Read More

Bruce Bialosky

The Joys of Being a Californian

Our California governor Gallivanting Gavin has his eyes on running for President, assuming the octogenarian in the White House bows out. Gavin will be telling America what a wonderful job he has done here in California to deserve being promoted to ruling over all fifty states. We should review the sparkling aspects these days of being a Californian. California ranks first in many ways. For example, we have the highest gas prices in the country. We unfortunately have fallen behind Hawaii and come in at number two at having the highest energy prices in the country. Again, we are falling behind in another key area. We come in at #3 for the highest cost of living, falling behind Hawaii and New York. We are really slumping when it comes to overall tax rates ranking just #3. That is despite ranking first for individual tax rates. We are all confident that in his second term as governor, Gallivanting Gavin will strive to get us back to being number one in all these categories. And then there is our poverty rate. Mississippi comes in at the top with highest. That is before you adjust for cost of living. California ranks 26th when you just look at the poverty… Read More

Ray Haynes

Something Didn’t Smell Right

Yesterday, one week after the election, the Legislative Analyst Office released a report on California’s fiscal outlook. It reported that there was going to be a $25 billion deficit. Assembly Budget Committee Chairman, Assembly Phil Ting, a Democrat, told the press there was nothing to worry about, “last year,” he said, “the LAO reported there was going to be a deficit at this same time, and it turned out to be a record surplus.” That is a false statement. I use the harsh word “false” because it is easy verifiable (though no one in the press even made the effort to verify if it was true or false). Read last year’s fiscal outlook report (on November 17, 2021) and you will find the LAO predicted a more than $30 billion surplus, with surpluses into the future (whoops, that was wrong too).

Contrast that with my prediction made in the run up to the state budget last year, in an article I wrote on December 15, 2021 entitled “My Advice to Legislators: Don’t Rely on LAO Rosy Scenarios For A Budget Surplus.” In that article, I said: “History has shown that pre-election projections of largeRead More

Bruce Bialosky

Big Brother Has Finally Arrived

Absence of Malice is a 1981 Sydney Pollack film starring Paul Newman that I recently rewatched. If you have not seen it — or have not recently — it is timeless. Newman’s character is accused of killing a union boss which he asserts he is innocent of the charge. Sally Field plays a reporter who writes a story “accusing him” of the crime. During one encounter, Newman says “I gotta know where that story came from. ‘Knowledgeable sources,’ you said. You write what they say and then you help them hide. You say you have a right to do that, and I got no right to know who they are.” Fields says “If they clear you. I’ll write about that too.” Newman replies. “What page?” Matters have not changed much when it comes to the press except they now attribute most claims to “experts say” and we are supposed to drop to our knees and thank them. Yet this kind of behavior has spread throughout our society. You are aware of it – “it” is called cancel culture. People express something on social media, and they are harassed for being a bigot etc. etc. etc. We now have advanced past cancel culture as proceedings have gotten even worse and… Read More

Bruce Bialosky

Pelosi Attack Was Not Political Violence

We have lived for 32 years in a neighborhood that until recently had virtually no crime incidents. We live in the Santa Monica Mountains away from major boulevards. We kept our garage door open during the day without concern. Then things changed. Three years ago, on a Sunday, when I was at my office seven minutes from our home, a person pulled into our garage in my space. He saw no activity in the house but sat in the garage for fifteen minutes waiting for our dogs to calm down. The Beautiful Wife (TBW) was in her office on the other side of the house, so the alarm was not on. She heard the continuing barking by our three dogs and came over to the other side of the house thinking there was a critter driving the doggies crazy. On that side of the house, she was facing a man who came in from our garage. When she asked what he was doing in our house, he said “I am a visitor.” She told him to get the hell out, and he immediately exited while she called the police. That very evening, the police suspected it was same the guy casing a house around the corner, got us and TBW identified him as he was wearing the same shirt he wore when entering our home.… Read More

Bruce Bialosky

What This Election is About

Yes, we are having an election in next week and there could not be a clearer choice. In fact, there never has been. I understand why some people wanted to toss Donald Trump out of office. He has a great ability to say things in ridiculously stupid ways. But he had this country in a rather good place until his replacement took over. Let’s recount what has happened since Mr. Biden took over: 1. He has given away over $426 billion of our money to people who made a choice to take out college loans and now somehow feel oppressed. That does not include the billions he has already given away through other college loan relief programs. And yet he has proposed zero reforms to prevent this from happening again. 2. Parents in this country finally woke up to the fact the country’s public schools are dismal. This is the best thing that came out of the pandemic. They have come to realize the teachers’ unions have negligible interest in our children. The already horrific performance of these schools only became worse. Standardized test scores have plummeted from their already dismal levels. It is easy to brand the teachers’ unions as the most… Read More

Richard Rider

Why I voted FOR the massive, grossly unfair Prop 30 “soak the rich” tax

I have a terrible confession to make. After much soul searching, for the first time in my life, I just voted for a massive tax increase — Prop 30. So did my wife and sons.

It’s a HORRIBLE tax increase — a 1.75% income tax increase on the over-taxed super-wealthy of California — those with $2,000,000 or more in annual income (including, of course, capital gains) to fund elect vehicle (EV) infrastructure. It’s a special interest propfunded 95% by Lyft. Initially I opposed this EV tax increase, and I included that opposition position in my list of recommendations.

Here are my reasons for changing my mind:

The overwhelming majority of these wealthy Californians either actively support the woke movement (including higher taxes) or choose to stay quiet. According to the Legislative Office (LAO), the top 1% of CA income taxpayers pay 50% of all the state’s income tax. Too bad for them. Only a handful of the super-rich have had the guts … Read More

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