Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Crocodile Tears

Not sure, but I'm thinking California is making some positive history at the moment along the lines of governmental reform. Yeah, California has led the way on a lot reform type things, but as of late, not so much, that's why this latest event is newsworthy.

Some background...
California's constitution requires a balanced budget by a certain deadline every year. This would be June 15th.
It was a requirement without consequence. For the last 25yrs or so, the budget has only been on time once, and has been as much as six months late, or longer.
A 2/3 vote of both houses was always needed to pass a budget. This led to much of the lateness, as Republicans fought tax increases that the Democrats always insist are necessary to achieve balancing.
The Constitution also requires a 2/3 vote to raise taxes.
In the past, when ever the gimmicks and hat tricks ran out, there were always the 2-3required GOP votes, after much arm wrestling, to get the budgets passed/taxes increased. Generally, these were sacrificial lambs, those who were term-limited out of the voters wrath.

Some nearer background:
Last election cycle saw a proposition put before, and approved by, the voters, sponsored by liberal teet-sucker groups with the full support of the Democrat Party, that would allow a balanced budget with a simple majority vote. The hitch: if not met by the constitutional deadline, all legislators' pay and per diem would be forfeited. Not merely deferred.
The Democrats loved this proposition. Loved it hard. Now, by simple majority vote, they would be able to have their way without those pesky GOP guys throwing wrenches and demanding compromises.

Today: California faces a 9-point something billion dollar deficit. The GOP, powerless to have any say, stayed out of the budget process while the Governor (Brown, yeah... that Brown)begged and pleaded them to go along with additional tax increases while placing more tax increases on the ballot.

The GOP held firm, promising a only to place taxes on the ballot IF public employee pension reform was also on the ballot. (A large part of the state's budget woe results from unfunded pension obligations.) The Governor was unwilling to throw his benefactors under the bus, so we now have what we have.

At basically the midnight hour, June 15th, the Democrats passed a 'balanced budget' that included understated obligations, over-stated revenue sources and non-existent taxes and fees... cheering publicly that they had performed their duty and would be receiving their pay checks as scheduled.
The next day, Governor Brown vetoed the fairy tale budget calling it, basically... a fairy tale budget.

Last Monday...
State Treasurer John Chiang, the one who signs the paychecks, declared the budget null, in bad faith, and about $2 Billion out of balance. He also announced that the legislators had not met their obligation, and have forfeited all pay and per diem (somewhere around $400+ per day) until they do.

There was much wailing and gnashing of teeth before the cameras from the Democrats on California's Capital Hill.

I'm loving it.
Politicians who are not doing their job are not getting paid.
What's not to love?

The only improvement I'd like to offer: take all their pay,their jobs and including health and pension benefits. In short: terminate them. That's what would happen to me if I didn't do my job, wouldn't it?

(I expect our next Governor to be of Chinese decent, and named 'John')


Foxfier said...

*evil villain laugh* Outstanding.

Can we take this to a national level? ^.^

Vanesa Littlecrow W. said...

Why didn't anyone think of this sooner? I am totally envious of California.

(Did I just type that?)

Night Writer said...

Would that be John Wang, pilgrim?