Stupid Ballot Measures Should Not Be the Reason to End Direct Democracy in California

 

Direct democracy used to be affordable in California, pay 200 dollars, write your petition to the Attorney General of California and you would be able to submit your ballot measure petition to be sent to the voters to sign to get it placed on the ballot if you had the money and the signatures required plus another 20 percent to cover any errors.

2015 led to a troll who wrote a ballot measure to ask for homosexual people to be executed and those who promoted “sodomistic propaganda” be massively fined and jailed for up to 10 years which led to direct democracy to be restricted in our state. The ballot measure was extreme and led to a massive outcry where the filing fee got increased to 2000 bucks, but this did not stop a new proponent who decided to implement an idea making abortion first degree murder. Even if one thinks abortion is the murder of innocent unborn people, this does not lead to good optics in a state such as California.

Just as how Democrats are trying to nerf the recall system because it’s not going their way, I do fear that Direct Democracy will be curtailed due to this stupid ballot measure even though it’s highly unlikely it will get the required signatures. Yes, I got slammed by Planned Parenthood and Senator Leyva calling me a Pro-Life extremist, but if we want to fight against Abortion rights extremists this ballot measure is not the tool either. You must do it incrementally such as a ballot measure protecting the right to life pregnancy centers where they would not be forced to advocate for abortion.

If we want to reduce the number of trolls and protect the right of direct democracy in California we need a kill switch that would curtail the crazy ideas or make them harder to pass. Perhaps make it where the ballot measure must pass in two consecutive cycles by majority vote or by two thirds vote in one election to adapt ideas from Nevada into our state.

Most ballot measures are mainstream, but the voice of the public should not be curtailed because its outside the political norm of the majority party either. It would be like if Republicans in California wanted to limit the power of taxation in our state or Democrats in Texas wanted to protect transgender children in schools. However, the irony is that the “Progressives” of the Democratic Party want to undo the major reforms of the founder of California progressive politics.

Munson on AB 398

Republicans ended up getting the raw deal in July’s controversial #ab398. Eight Republicans attained exceptional outcry and grief due to what they did with their votes that enabled its passage. Republicans across the board from the ones who voted for Obama to the Republicans who are part of the Tea Party movement are disgusted at the support our legislators gave to this bill.

Minority Leader Chad Mayes and Assemblyman Marc Steinorth may state that if we did not pass this bill legislators such as Senator Connie Leyva and Assemblywoman Eloise Reyes will be ready to pass an even crippling bill at first chance. Even if AB 398 is the best thing since sliced bread, this bill is not static. Democrats can still undo this agreement.

Not all of us are wealthy like Assemblyman Steinorth. We can’t afford to absorb these new economic regulations that are driving people to Texas.

Another year of life. Another chance to reflect.

My birthday happens next week and I am hoping for the best for myself.  I have been working at my current job for the last year and a half and I have been doing better than I used to.

I hope to be more comfortable driving in the long run so I can visit farther places because there is still more of California to discover.

I hope I successfully network with potential allies to see if running full on for a legislative campaign general election position would be doable with potential fundraising.

I hope to make progress with various video games I have not made a dent on such as Breath of the Wild for the Nintendo Switch.

I hope to save more money because you never know what will happen to our state or the national economy.

Two years to 40. Time does fly and I need to make good use of my youth.

Issues Matter Most in 2018 Local Elections

I do not believe that we need to dethrone a city council member by personal attacks like what happened in 2014, but the issues matter more in how Ontario Council Member Alan Wapner has conducted himself in regional organizations such as the Southern California Association of Governments and San Bernardino County Transportation Authority should be the main and only factor.

In the high desert, two members of SBCTA did get dethroned in 2016. However, we must be careful in who replaces people such as Alan Wapner if the opportunity arises. Blanca Gomez replaced Ryan McEachron in Victorville and she has become an opposite in what we want in a council member. Even though a growing number do not want toll lanes or easier passage of transportation taxes, we do not want radicals either where Blanca is an advocate for open borders and wants unqualified people to be planning commissioners.

The minimum we should ask for from our SBCTA members is the following:

Toll roads should be voted on by the residents of the counties involved.

Transportation taxes should not become permanent and continue to ask for voter re-authorization.

Threshold to lower passage of tax increases should not be lowered nor advocacy should be encouraged. The merits of transportation projects should be the main factor if voters want to increase their taxes with the 2/3rds requirement.

Bus Rapid Transit should be prohibited if lanes of traffic are blocked off from regular use.

Too Many Cooks In The Kitchen

People fail to understand the mechanics about the political system in the state of California where political campaigns are won and lost in a jungle primary called the Top 2 system.  Democrats were shut out in 2012 in Congressional District 31 and Republicans were shut out of the 2016 US Senate race. Yes, it is nice that people want to participate in the political process, but the more people entering in a race such as for California Governor then Republicans will risk a race between two Democratic Party candidates.

I recognize that 11 months prior to the primary people want to start their exploratory committees and I can understand that. However, we had around 13 candidates running for US Senate which diluted the vote share in 2016. We must have the discipline to cut it down to 2 or 3. People need to decide by November if they have the feasibility to seriously contend for a statewide race.

There are also numerous state legislative, statewide and even Board of Equalization races one can consider running for as well. For example, Assembly District 52 had no Republican running for the race and we had to endure a 2 Democratic Party candidate campaign. I know people want the bully pulpit of running for major office, but there are other ways one can get the attention desired to get their issues out in the open as a state legislative or congressional candidate.

The problem is Republicans undervote instead of voting for Loretta Sanchez in 2016. I do recognize that Republicans want a choice, not an echo however we have to fully understand the mechanics of the Top 2 primary system. The factions in the California Republican Party need to become more united than the Democratic Party in our state and figure out how to fairly divvy up the statewide slate so we can work together instead of working against each other. It would be tragic if we end up in a condition like the Hawaiian Republican Party where Charles Munger Jr. would be a king of a crumbling castle.

Lockbox The Transportation Funds

Now is the time to restrict our state legislature when it comes to transportation funds. The Objective of this ballot measure is to provide the following:

Fixed cap where transportation funds must be offered to:

  • 75% roads and freeways
  • 20% public transportation
  • 5% other

Cap can only be modified with 2/3rds vote in both houses and be approved by voters in the following state general election in even year.

Funds can only be taken out for non-transportation usage if state is in a budget crisis where state is in a budget deficit of sizable proportion with 2/3rds vote.

Toll roads must be approved by the voters in impacted communities.

Killing Off the Private Option is the Fatal Flaw for SB 562

I understand that our progressive friends want single payer health care where government manages it all. However single payer is not all that glamorous when you read the ugly stories in Canada and the United Kingdom about their system. It was predicted that the Affordable Care Act was basically training wheels for Single Payer because right now the system is ready to derail big time in the next few years. Certain states are going to have NO insurance company as part of their health care exchanges because insurance companies are unwilling to partake in the government system no matter if it is federal or state managed.

Enter SB 562, California’s effort in having a single payer health care system. Co-written by Senators Lara and Atkins it is called the “Healthy California Act”, where the authors strive to improve access to health care. I agree that something should be done when insurance premiums are approaching almost 10 thousand dollars for a family. However, the bad point of the bill is no private option.

The health plans that people rely on will be shuddered thanks to this legislation. Many people in California love Kaiser Pernamente due to it being the Mercedes Benz of health care plans. With this new law, we will be forced into the government system or if you are wealthy you would have to go out of state to pay cash for the health care you need.

The big fear of SB 562 is the reimbursement rates, I would expect to see a health care provider shortage when doctors decide to either retire or move out of California. Medi-Cal currently has a provider shortage due to reimbursement rates. The Democratic Party would likely need to have programs where if one gets educated at the UC medical school they would be required to take care of patients in the state program for a decade in exchange for a modest salary.

I think the authors of SB 562 need to go back to the drawing board and come up with an idea like Medicare Part C and D and the Australian health care system. Government cannot do it all despite many believing it can. Public option can coexist with a Private option.

Fiscally, even if we are paying a 9% tax to help fund the program, will it be sustainable? States such as Vermont crashed and burn when they tried single payer. The California Public Employee Retirement System also has funding shortfalls as well. I am skeptical of California politicians managing money if I trusted Bernie Madoff to manage my portfolio.

Also, the new California tax is regressive when it comes to low income workers. One would be paying the unsubsidized price before ACA subsidies which would take away money that one may need for their car payment or groceries. Democrats are criticizing Trump for doing similar things.

Due to the Super Majority this bill is likely to pass no matter if you like it or not to infer from a quote from Gavin Newsom when he was speaking how equal marriage rights was inevitable. However, this bill needs to go back to the drawing board. We need to come up with solutions to improve the supply of medical providers, how would the authors deal with the issue of big health care networks controlled by the private sector deciding to shut down where private hospitals such as Kaiser Pernamente will fold in California, how would the authors make the payroll tax equitable to low income workers.

Expanding the California State Assembly Ideologically

Secretary of State Alex Padilla may want our state and local governments have ethnic diversity, but how about ideological diversity. My idea is a party list system that helps ideological minority political parties have a chance at representing voters. I want to have 40 extra assembly seats for each senate district that would allow for a minority political party have a chance IF both assembly districts nested in a state senate district are controlled by one party where they would be ineligible to run for that seat. The county chairs of the political parties recognized by the state would nominate their party list nominees to be placed on the ballot.

The rule would be where party list nominated candidates have to be registered as that political party for at least four years so the system would not be gamed as how in Washington DC where the political minority in the dominantly Democratic Party are offered two seats and Democrats drop their party affiliation in order to run in those.

Yes, Democrats can run in these party list seats and win some just as much as Republicans could gain an opportunity with this proposal. Parties such as Peace and Freedom and Libertarian Party can gain with this proposal where in Berkeley or San Francisco where the Republican Party would not have strong odds.

The Giving Tree of California Will Fade Away

One of my letter submissions for the month.

It seems that legislators in the Democratic Party are looking for another government program to add to our strained state, single payer health care also known as universal health care. A costly new governmental program is one obligation our state cannot afford after our failures in taking care of infrastructure such as bridges and dams while public pensions are eating local and state government alive.

If we cannot take care of our current obligations, then why support the Universal Health Care bill from Senator Atkins and Lara. We need to limit our obligations so we can afford the programs we have now instead of crumbling down to future generations.

Sanctuary City Policies Will Backfire

I can understand the residents of our city who may be here illegally have a sense of fear and dread about the Trump administration. I understand that many of them are pressuring city councils and counties to ask for Sanctuary Status for their governing bodies. However, a blanket ban on calling ICE on individuals is a very reckless idea where we are hurting both legal and illegal residents who are minding their own business.

There is a difference between an illegal resident witnessing a drive by shooting and an illegal resident who commits the drive by shooting. We should not send ICE over to take away the drive by witness, but we should send ICE on a resident here illegally who commits very serious crimes.

Perhaps the rule of thumb that should be communicated to our residents here illegally is don’t rob banks, don’t murder people, don’t drive under the influence and life will be good.

Life in the Inland Valley