Egypt Has Something to Do With California’s Budget, But I Don’t Know What

Back in the day they called him Governor Moonbeam, in part for things like this recent state of the state. This is the LA Times account:

Citing the pro-democracy unrest in Egypt and Tunisia, Gov. Jerry Brown called it “unconscionable” that GOP legislators are vowing to block his attempt to ask voters to extend tax hikes to balance the budget.  

“When democratic ideals and calls for the right to vote are stirring the imagination of young people in Egypt and Tunisia and other parts of the world, we in California can’t say now is the time to block a vote of the people,” Brown said in his first State of the State address in nearly 30 years.

He said the budget has tough choices but that the people “have a right to vote” on the package.

He challenged both parties to take the difficult votes necessary to balance the budget.

“If you are a Democrat who doesn’t want to make budget reductions in programs you fought for and deeply believe in, I understand that,” he said. “If you are a Republican who has taken a stand against taxes, I understand where you are coming from. But this time things are different. In fact, the people are telling us — in their own way — they sense something is profoundly wrong. They see that their leaders are divided when they should be decisive and acting with clear purpose.”

I suppose he is being selective in comparing a possibly democratic uprising (we’ll see) in Egypt with a special election here. He is, of course, forgetting that California was an aberration last November in returning him to the governor’s mansion and permitting Barbara Boxer to continue her misfeasance in the senate. He simply contradicts himself when he says he understands where anti-tax activists are “coming from” but somehow expects them to roll over and not use the political tools at their disposal to fight taxes.

As I noted earlier his budget proposal isn’t likely to win him friends. In fact, his base is girding their loins.:

One of the problems we face in California is that it is easy to see why people like Mayor Bloom and probably dozens or hundreds of other mayors are aghast at Brown’s proposal. Much of their work on the city council and much of the work done by the city staff depends on these funds. That the funds were never intended to do what they are being used to do is irrelevant to city politicians. This is why we truly need to downsize the government. We must sunset agencies and stamp expiration dates on laws. Yes there would be problems resulting from this but they wouldn’t be the same problems caused by an ever-bloating bureaucracy.

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