California Special Election Edition (May 19, 2009)
Here we go again, young conservatives. Uncle Woody was wondering just how long it would take before California politicians ("Spending Your Money So You Don't Get To") came up with a special election to hide the fact that, basically, they're just one big, happy, dysfunctional family up there in Sacramento.
Governor Steroids has already shown that he'd rather put the blame on the voters than try to get those girly men in the legislature to sit down and make tough choices in order to balance our budget. Didn't work last time, either. In fact, Uncle Woody is going to go out on a limb here and say that, pound for pound, special elections in California are about as effective as an Obama cabinet appointee.
Your California politicians were so lazy this time, young conservatives, that they didn't even bother to come up with new numbers for each proposition on the ballot. No, this time we get to decide between 1A, 1B, 1C, 1D, 1E, and 1F. 4-F is actually what comes to Uncle Woody's mind when he sees this sort of nonsense, and those who once upon a time had to worry about being drafted know what Uncle Woody is talking about. Heaven only knows what we'd be paying for if the legislature ever made it to 2.
So let's make it easy this time around and give you the ENTIRE BALLOT RECOMMENDATION IN ONE WORD, okay, young conservatives? Here it is:
It really is just that simple, young conservatives. Uncle Woody wants you all to march into your polling places on May 19, look at the silly ballot that's already costing taxpayers millions of dollars during an economic downturn (makes sense!) and select "No" for every proposition on the page.
But, of course, you young conservatives have come to rely on Uncle Woody's rapier wit and detailed analyses of these ballot initiatives over the years, so I'll go ahead and chime in:
1A (Boy, this sounds familiar, doesn't it?) In the last election, 1A masqueraded as a high-speed rail line between Los Angeles and San Francisco. I think. That was several months ago before we elected Hope and Change to the White House. My memory is already numb. Anyway, 1A has now been rebranded as "State Budget. Changes California Budget Process. Limits State Spending. Increases 'Rainy Day' Budget Stabilization Fund."
Considering the fact that we haven't enjoyed a budget surplus in this state since Pete Wilson was in office, and the fact that RINO-in-Chief Schwarzenburger, or whatever his name is, can't get anyone to agree with any of his spending policies, I can't imagine that it's actually the "process" that needs fixing. In fact, Uncle Woody envisions "fixing" a large number of Sacramento politicians in the veterinary sense of the word.
That Uncle Woody would support.
1B Titled "Education Funding. Payment Plan." It should also be sub-titled "Heavily Sponsored by the Socialist California Teachers Association." This one is a highly transparent attempt by the teachers union in this state to punish the Governator for "borrowing" $2 billion a few years ago and forgetting (you know how it is with taxes) to pay it back. Can't get it back from Arnie? Soak the taxpayers!
In fact, 1A and 1B are being heavily pursued by the CTA, and it's no wonder. They want "their" money back, and they want to prevent state politicos from ever grabbing it again.
I wish them better luck than we taxpayers have had, but they'll get no help from Uncle Woody.
1C "Lottery Modernization Act." Oh, for Pete's sake. We don't "need" a lottery in the first place, and now they think that "modernizing" it is somehow going to generate more money for the state. So, let's see: they'll need to update lottery machines across the state, then figure out a way to recoup the investment. What to do... what to do...? Wait! Of course! The taxpayers will help! They LOVE the lottery!
Just one quick question: How many of those innumerable millionaires you've created with the lottery still live in California? Anyone? Bueller?
1D "Protects Children's Services Funding. Helps Balance State Budget." So, I'm a little surprised that I haven't seen intensive video of starving children a la Ethopian relief agency ads, because that's frankly the way this proposition is written. "Temporarily provides greater flexibility in funding to preserve health and human services for young children" is how this travesty begins. What they leave out is that they're really trying to get funding for all those undocumented children that taxpayers are getting more leery of supporting when they're having a hard time saving up for their own retirements these days.
Also, and let Uncle Woody be crystal clear here, young conservatives: the State General Fund is not a sacred cow. Time and time again, Sacramento has proven itself capable of moving that money around like some legalized Ponzi scheme, and nary a nickel of it ever ends up where it was intended.
1E "Mental Health Services Funding. Temporary Reallocation. Helps Balance State Budget."
Right. Also solves global warming, cures the common cold, and generates cold fusion renewable energy sources.
Look, as with 1D, this is just another attempt by special interest lobbies in Sacramento to get their hands on money that we don't have. So, shuffle it around temporarily, then slip it back into the General Fund when no one is looking. Right? What could be easier?
Oh, Uncle Woody doesn't know... how about balancing the actual state budget for a change?
1F "Elected Officials' Salaries. Prevents Pay Increases During Budget Deficit Years." This one actually made Uncle Woody laugh, young conservatives. Not out loud, though. It's after midnight here at Hacienda Woody, and Uncle Woody doesn't want to wake Auntie Woody up. But I'm laughing on the inside.
Hey, we already have safeguards for preventing pay increases for elected officials, but we voters are typically too lazy or too stupid to actually use them. It's called "voting the bums out," and so far as Uncle Woody is concerned, no politician in Sacramento is immune. Or ought to be, anyway. If these idiots in tailored suits actually believe that they deserve to be paid more for wasting our money in the first place, then Uncle Woody thinks it's time to help them with a career adjustment.
So there you have it, young conservatives. Doubtless you're wondering to yourselves, "Gee. How can we possibly repay Uncle Woody for this extremely valuable advice?" Whereupon I reply, "Aw, shucks, young conservatives, it's nothing really. No, really. It's nothing. Put down the pitchforks and torches, young conservatives. Uncle Woody was only kidding! Really! Vote any way you like! Please!!"
I'm nothing if not a patriot.