California Dreaming

Sacramento Bee Columnist Daniel Weintraub comments on Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s legislative loss Friday evening.

What Arnold Schwarzenegger wanted before he became Gov. Schwarzenegger was a government that lives within its means, one that spends no more than it takes in and doesn’t face massive deficits. He could have won a measure guaranteeing all that Friday night. He still might, if he takes a step back, takes a deep breath, remembers who he is and gets back to work.

It’s amazing (and distressing) to watch this California politics stuff play out. The California Legislature is essentially useless — so polarized that 2/3rd’s can’t agree on anything. Sure seems like it’s time once again for major constitutional reform — it’ll be very interesting to see what the Gov. proposes.

Golden Gate Angel

Sometimes you just happen upon things. I bow low to serendipity all the time.

Just happened across this link to a TypePad photo album — a superb photo of a Blue Angel #5 crossing the Golden Gate Bridge.

Not sure who the photographer is – looks like a new TypePad weblog is in the process of being created here – but it’s such a great shot! The rest of this photo album is pretty special as well! Wow!

A California State of Mind

Do you miss California?

“Do you miss California?,” people ask us all the time. The real answer is yes. And no. And in a way, it’s as if we never left. Is there anyplace left in America where you can live without having to suppress the fear of apocalypse?

“Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year,” wrote Ralph Waldo Emerson. “No man has learned anything rightly, until he knows that every day is Doomsday.”

What’s wrong with California?

Take a look at this.

Some think of it as a storm out at sea, gathering gale force as it heads for shore. Others say it is merely a giant wave, demanding great effort to ride out, but survivable in the end.

Whatever the choice of metaphor, many agree that the budgetary bite of steeply rising pension costs for public employees will for some time to come erode spending for public services and programs typically provided by cities, law enforcement agencies and fire districts.

Those costs are soaring at a time when revenue for government agencies is falling — and when pension benefits in the private sector are declining or disappearing.

I certainly appreciate the dedication of municipal and state employees. But I really don’t appreciate their hand on my wallet to this extent — which is so far out of line with what’s happening in the private, non-public sector.