Wednesday :: Nov 5, 2008

California: Ungovernable


by paradox

Leaving aside the appalling hate and bigotry embraced by the Mormon Church in passing Proposition 8 last night, readers need to understand that the Proposition was a constitutional amendment, not a law, which of course makes it much harder to overturn in the courts. All that is required to amend the CA constitution from a Proposition is a majority of the voting public.

California cannot legislate a freaking tax increase without a super-majority, yet any Proposition to amend the constitution just needs 50.1%. Plain lunacy, employing the same kind of weird denial and rationalizations that accepts the federal alternative minimum tax: we have a taxation system, but also this funny parallel system with different rules. We have a legislative system in Sacramento and then a goofy parallel system employed every two years by ballot initiative.

Needless to say this has been an unparalleled disaster and has made California totally ungovernable. Term limits stupidly rob us of any experience and put lobbyists in control of the legislature (so many freshmen appear every year lobbyists write the bills right on the floor as they’re worked up on the fly). Draconian unjust sentencing mandates have crippled the judicial and prison system. Regressive taxation is baked into the constitution that continues to smash our education spending.

Somehow we need leadership to fix this mess, yet I haven’t the faintest clue or hope where that could come from. No one ever mentions junking the initiative process or changing amendment requirements, it’s just accepted this insanity is the way things are, we’ll just have to live with it.

Well, living with it means a lousy education system, a smashed penal and judicial system, a fresh crop of gullible morons in Sacramento every election, and no real way to invest for the future. Maybe someday a great politician or the Democratic Party can try to fix it, but all we have now is the ruins of a once great Republic, and my heart is heavy.

paradox :: 10:50 AM :: Comments (19) :: Spotlight :: Digg It!