For a sharp and historically informed analysis of the pension follies of state Democratic lawmakers, no one is going to top Jerry Roberts’ and Phil Trounstine’s piece on Calbuzz.
Let’s be blunt. Democrats, whose political livelihoods have steadily and increasingly become dependent on union money since Jerry Brown in his first term signed the legislation that gave state employees collective bargaining rights, are terrified of moving an inch on pensions without permission and marching orders from the labor groups that finance their campaigns.
I’m off for a week to stew about the Lakers and hunt for a place in California that’s one-third as perfect as this place. I saw a celebrity there once who was tired and emotional, but Googling shows he’s still alive, so I will keep his name to myself. I may be outraged enough about some state issue to rev up the laptop, but I hope not. Some have compassion fatigue. I have outrage fatigue. I blame Rough & Tumble.
A tweet I sent out earlier today lamenting that birther Gary Kreep had pulled ahead in a close race for Superior Court judge here in San Diego prompted two emails ripping me for not being happy to see a “true conservative” win a judgeship. Groan. I’m a libertarian lite, not a conservative. And I remain absolutely stupefied that birthers and people who tolerate birthers don’t realize that Barack Obama and his fans love this idiocy being repeated because it discredits all critics of the president. I’m completely convinced that Obama has intentionally not acted in decisive ways to end this moronic “debate” because he knows it helps him. Duh. Duh. Duh.
For years, I whined on my old blog about the lazy way that most Sacramento reporters covered the state budget — specifically, all the stories that accepted the union/Democratic establishment premise that state spending had to go up 6 percent or 8 percent a year, or else spending was being “cut.” It wasn’t the George Skeltons of the world who tried to take me to the woodshed for my stupidity. It was Dan Walters, who is infinitely less predictable than Skelton or his colleague Dan Morain. He wrote a Feb. 26, 2009, column that basically said I was a dolt serving up right-wing talking points. (I can’t find it online any more, alas.)
I sincerely admire Keith Olbermann as a sportscaster and baseball columnist/seamhead. But on and off over the years, I’ve sent him notes saying I can’t understand the contrast between his thoughtful analysis of baseball and his ridiculously predictable political analysis, which routinely beatifies all those who share his lefty views and Nazifies those with whom he disagrees. I’ve also blogged about him.
The New York Times has an entertaining story about how Mitt Romney’s visits to the beachfront home he bought in 2008 in posh La Jolla have some of his neighbors grumbling and bummed, and for good reason. The idea that a possible future president would have a second home in a place as crowded as La Jolla is crazy. It’s not Key Biscayne or San Clemente or the Bush or Kennedy compounds. I’ve driven past Romney’s home and been flabbergasted at the idea it could be the Western White House. But beyond making this valid point, the article also has two really funny passages. One involves an anecdote about Romney confronting a pot-smoking beachgoer. The other has the Times quoting Darrell Issa in a way that makes the high-profile Vista Republican congressman look like a total liar.
Even before he quit the Republican Party in March, San Diego Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher had come into the cross hairs of influential Flashreport publisher Jon Fleischman and Steven Greenhut, the Sacramento-based libertarian think tanker, editor and pundit with a national following. Now, as an independent mayoral candidate in today’s elections in San Diego, Fletcher has lived up to their warnings. He’s essentially teamed up with public employee unions against San Diego’s leading critic of the government status quo, rival mayoral candidate Carl DeMaio. I provide the grisly details here at Cal Watchdog.