Tag Archive: California

Ed Schultz interviews the guy Christie bossed around in California

There are a few reasons I’m posting this clip of Ed Schultz’ segment about Chris Christie. First hat/tips Nick Lento & SmartyJones. We’ve all had an infuriating week watching Christie suck up adulating national coverage both on his GOP promotional tour and especially as he basked in reflected glory standing next to Cory Booker as Mark Zuckerberg handed him a bonus for Newark’s kids on Oprah. I thought we deserved some alternative national coverage of the governor, even though as POLITICO reports, the msnbc hosts – including Rachel Maddow & Schultz – don’t have the juice compared to the screamers, the cryers and the loofah fans on the right like Glenn Beck and Bill O’Reilly. Yet. Schultz has an interview with the man Gov. Christie tried to intimidate at a Meg Whitman event in California – this guy. Turns out the guy – his name is Ed Buck – isn’t who you might think.

Ed Schultz (msnbc):

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Loretta Weinberg: Citizen-generated laws: Every issue would be politicized

This is posted here under my name, but I didn’t write it – Loretta Weinberg did. I’m posting this for her, as her west coast family is visiting. Loretta’s Op-Ed was posted last week at The Daily Record, and it’s posted here with Fred Snowflack’s permission, and Loretta’s. – REE

‘Let the people decide.” It sounds populist and popular, and to the proponents of initiative and referendum – I&R – it’s all they have to say to gin-up their supporters.

But before New Jersey rushes headlong into accepting I&R as the ultimate savior for the state’s ills, we need to take a big step back and look at what, exactly, is before us.

The faults of the legislative process are that it’s slow, deliberate and boring. But it is a process, and that’s a good thing. Making good policy requires conversation, careful analysis and care. Most importantly, good policy is independent of rank politics.

But I&R makes every issue inherently political. Under I&R, every issue that can be put on a ballot-no matter how innocuous- would become the focus of an organized political campaign. Gone would be hearing process, replaced by sound bites that fit on a bumper sticker. Major state issues deserve better than competing 8-by-10 glossy mailers bankrolled by special interests.

TX Oil Companies Try to Kill CA Clean Energy Legislation

As if the oil companies from Texas – and their allies in the corridors of power – hadn’t done enough harm to our country already (for more, see the late, great Gulf of Mexico), now they are at it once again.  This time, it’s Valero and Tesoro, pouring money into a campaign this election season to undo California’s landmark, clean energy and climate law, AB 32.  On Tuesday, the oil companies’ proposition was certified for the November ballot. The fight, as they say, is on!

Why should you care?  Let us count the ways.

Corzine talks GM, California and the overall economy

The Governor joined the Morning Joe crew on MSNBC this morning to discuss California, GM and the overall economy.

Corzine said that he believes that in these difficult times, it becomes that much more important who is Governor. He said he didn’t think the government should have let GM go bankrupt 6 months ago, despite the bankruptcy today. Corzine said he thinks the Federal government guaranteeing the debt of California should be a very last resort and touted some of the cuts his administration has made.

He said it’s not a a great time to be running for re-election, but you have to make tough choices.   Saying he didn’t really get the California setup, Corzine said if he had to get 2/3 of the vote in his legislature, he probably wouldn’t have gotten much done.

Just after 6 minutes in, you get a pretty good exchange between Corzine and host Joe Scarborough about spending and deficits as we try to help the economy recover. Scarborough closed by saying he’s glad he’s not a Governor now.

Here’s the video:

NJ and Gay Marriage

I plead ignorance on the status of gay marriage and civil unions in New Jersey.  Who knows the current status?  As important, is anyone familiar with bills floated in State legislature regarding gay marriage/unions?  

Personally, I find the passage of Prop 8 offensive and a clear violation of civil rights.  By my logic, the only defensible reason for preventing gay marriage is religious beliefs…and religious beliefs have no place in state or Federal laws or constitutions.  Gay Americans are at a severe disadvantage in fighting such discrimination due to their limited numbers.  Gay Americans remain a relatively small minority group in the USA, with, as I see it, relatively little power.  They don’t have the funding, PACs, caucuses, or other power mechanisms that other minority groups enjoy (e.g., blacks, women, immigrants).  

I believe that progressive Americans need to help Gay Americans carry the flag for this fight.  Its not just a gay rights issue, its a personal freedom and civil rights issue.  If Judeo-Christian values dictate the definition of legal marriage in this country, what’s next?  Ban’s on marriage between atheists and agnostics?  Prop 8 is a slippery slope, and its in the interest of progressives to not only stop the tide, but also turn it back the other direction.  

Which direction for equality?

While we rightfully celebrate the history-making election of Barack Obama, we need to take a moment and realize that history was made elsewhere, too.  In Florida and in Arizona, amendments defining marriage as a union of one man and one woman were approved easily.  In California, Prop 8 was approved by about five points.

It’s disturbing for those of us who see this as the leading civil rights issue of the day.  Sure, pro-Prop-8 money poured in from out of state, but marriage equality forces can’t claim that they were outfunded.  In California – historically one of the more liberal states in America – with plenty of funds, marriage equality was defeated when put to a vote.

So where does this leave our fight here in New Jersey?  What direction do we take now?  Personally, I fear that Jon Corzine (or anyone else) will be unable to defeat Chris Christie next year and the scandal-laden lege will flip with Drumthwacket.  Then a similar ballot measure could be on New Jersey’s ballot in 2010.

It’s time to go to work.  People depend on us.

Maybe Jersey isn’t so bad after all…

Remember when Republicans wanted to amend the Constitution to allow Arnold Schwartenegger to run for President because he did such a great job as Governor of California?  Turns out, not so much.

From CNN:

California may need a $7 billion emergency loan from the federal government to pay for “teachers’ salaries, nursing homes, law enforcement and every other state-funded service” this month, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger warns.

In the South, the joke is that the state motto of Alabama is “Thank God for Mississippi”.  Maybe we should take up the cry, “Thank God for California”?

California Supreme Court overturns gay marriage ban

This has no legal force in New Jersey, but the California decision is obviously of great interest to us.  This court is made up of six Republicans and one Democrat. The case was triggered by the famous San Francisco marriages. Yesterday’s discussion was interesting, so chime in please.

Updated below the fold with quotes from the decision, available at the LA Times link above as a PDF file.  Basically, the court is saying that the state has already allowed legal same sex relationships, but the “civil unions” are a form of second-class citizenship.

Marriage Equality (in California)

The California State Supreme Court will rule at 1pm ET tomorrow on Marriage Equality for same sex couples, according to Marc Ambinder:

California has a very strong civil unions law, which gives gay people virtually every state-granted right that married couples have access to. What the court is really dealing with here is whether whether the deprivation of the word “marriage” is in and of itself a constitutional harm.

I’d say there’s a lot more than a word at stake, and I’m hoping for a positive ruling in California that would be influential here.  

Budget Lessons from California

Something about the plan to fix New Jersey’s budget problems seemed familiar to me.  Wh said that  a one-time debt issue would fix problems caused by borrowing operating expenses year after year?  For course, it was Californias Arnold Schwarzenegger:

The $15 billion bond approved by voters in March of that year [2004] to pay down California’s persistent gap between spending commitments and revenue collections was the same kind of consolidation, Schwarzenegger said.

“We tore up the credit card,” Schwarzenegger said. “Never again will government be allowed to spend money it doesn’t have. Never again will the state be allowed to borrow money to pay for its operating expenses.”