California Prop-aganda @ 02:14 pm
Prop 1 - Died, leaving in its place...
Prop 1A - $10 billion in debt for high-speed rail? Actually completing the whole project is estimated at $45 billion? Ever hear of Ogdenville and North Haverbrook?
A bullet train-envious NO
Prop 2 - I like eating animals and I don't want them abused, but all this will do is shut down California farms, forcing us to import 'abused' meat and eggs from other states with 'laxer' laws. If the measure doesn't exclude food from other states, then it will not achieve its stated goal.
NO. Even vegan PETA-philes should vote NO.
Prop 3 - $1 billion for children's hospitals. Prop 61 (2004) authorized $750 million, and there are still $350 million left from that. Can't we spend the money we already wisely/unwisely authorized, before you hit us up for more? Won't somebody think of the children?
Prop 4 - Waiting period & parental notification on teen abortions.
Prop 73 failed in 2005, and Prop 85 failed in 2006. This one will also fail. Pediatricians, OB/GYNs and other doctors oppose it. So should you.
Prop 5 - Changing sentencing and parole for nonviolent drug offenses. Oh, and adds $460 million dollars annually for improving and expanding drug treatment programs. On the other hand, people who are in these programs aren't in prisons, so we'd be saving there. The whole thing is so bewilderingly complicated that you should...
Just say NO.
Prop 6 - Double state spending on police, DAs, probation, jails and juvie. Create new crimes and additional penalties. Makes meth possession a felony. Gang members (as defined by the Penal Code) get life sentences for certain crimes: carjacking, etc.. Failure to register as a gang member with the local law enforcement becomes a crime. ["Pardon me, officer, but I wish to register as a Crip, a 52 Hoover Gangster to be exact."] Etc. Etc. It's sort of the anti-Prop 5: Orwellian & draconian. Some good ideas buried inside a huge monster of a prop.
NO. (Unless you voted for Prop 5, in which case, vote yes so we can see them fight it out.)
Prop 7 - Increases the requirements of utilities (public and private) to generate energy from renewable sources.
I've seen the most ads about this one, so there must be something fishy about it. The one thing that stood out to me in the anti-ads was the claim that prop 7 would eliminate small producers of renewable energy. From the text:
SEC. 14. Section 25137 is added to the Public Resources Code, to read:
25137. "Solar and clean energy plant" means any electrical generating
facility using wind, solar photovoltaic, solar thermal, biomass, biogas,
geothermal, fuel cells using renewable fuels, digester gas, municipal solid
waste conversion, landfill gas, ocean wave, ocean thermal, or tidal current
technologies, with a generating capacity of 30 megawatts or more, or small
hydroelectric generation of 30 megawatts or less, and any facilities appurtenant
That really is something of a thumb in the eye of the 'little' guy. Even "large-scale" solar plants today often provide only 10-20 MW, so a 30 MW limit is just retarded. We have a zillion upstart renewable energy companies in California and they all deserve to get a crack at this. Poison pill.
Prop 8 - Re-illegalize same-sex marriage. Either way, this should settle it.
Prop 9 - Victims' rights. Expands the rights already granted by Prop 8 (1982). I really don't see the expansion as necessary. Currently, "a court is required under current state law to order full restitution [to the victim] unless it finds compelling and extraordinary reasons not to do so." Prop 9 would make restitution mandatory. What do we even need judges for, if they're not allowed to make the occasional Solomonic decision? The whole thing seems largely redundant. I also like part of the argument in favor: "CALIFORNIA'S CONSTITUTION GUARANTEES RIGHTS FOR RAPISTS, MURDERERS, CHILD MOLESTERS, AND DANGEROUS CRIMINALS." Well, I should hope so!
Prop 10 - Rebates for high fuel economy and alternate fuel cars. Money for research into renewables. Total of $5 billion.
Pish. Most of the money goes to clean alternative fuel vehicles, which requires a mere 10% reduction in carbon emissions. A ton of money for a 10% improvement? Half of the money goes essentially to rebates on 18-wheelers. I'm not knocking a 10% (or better) improvement on semis, but do we have to pay for it like this? I might vote for the $1.25 billion in research, but not when it's attached to billions of dollars of handouts for T Boone "Swift Boat" Pickens.
Prop 11 - Redistributing Redistricting
Although it has a pleasant taste of Athenian democracy, with ordinary citizens getting to turn into gerrymanders, does anyone honestly believe ordinary citizens are going to wind up participating. It's also slightly creepy to have Democrats and Republicans written explicitly into the law (the final commission has 5 elephants, 5 asses [if not more], and 4 'others').
Prop 12 - Bond for Veterans to get home loans. A mere $900 million. The Cal-Vet program already exists ($8.4 billion worth) and "has been totally supported by the participating veterans, at no direct cost to the taxpayer." There's $100 million left in the fund at the moment.
Ruining my clean sweep, I'll go...
Finally, the debt-service ratio graph is kind of interesting, showing the mountain of debt in our future.