Monday, October 10, 2011

A California tuneup -

A California tuneup -

First, remove money from our election, initiative, and legislative process: no corporate campaign contributions or sponsorship of initiatives, private contributions limited to an amount that would let any Californian participate and influence, and a very high bar set for Constitutional amendment by initiative.

Second, before any intiative becomes law, it must pass a stringent Constitutional review. Most initiatives, including the ones I have supported, have been fatally flawed from partisan origins and corporate sponsorship.

Mercury Insurance has twice tried to supercede our government through the initiative process, and I finally had enough. I took my business elsewhere, sending the definition of Fascism to Mercury CEO George Joseph along with my cancellation after decades of coverage.

You might still be laboring under the delusion that Proposition 13 was a grassroots, populist, anti-tax, save-Grandma movement, but it was nothing more than a corporate grab for Sacramento power along with a welfare program for commercial real estate titans. P13 and the shadow organization HJTA was funded by commercial property owners, not bad people in themselves but certainly not representing a majority of homeowners. P13 destabilized local tax collection, robbed local governments of power to run their cities and gave it to Sacramento, helped destroy manufacturing in California in favor of Big Box retailers (so some of the state tax revenue could be sent back to locals, while capping property taxes on the established manufacturers), and set the stage for our current un-equitable real estate market. All because of a corrupt initiative process, misleading the public.

Third - many of us remember when California tried to be great. When we tried to educate each of our children, when a decent home in a safe neighborhood was affordable to anyone who worked, when we had a secure future. Instead, we have an economic landscape corrupted by the ever increasing demand to rob from the middle class to stuff the pockets of the wealthy, who turn around and pay people to lie to us in grocery store parking lots in order to gather signatures for initiatives benefiting only the top 1%. We can aspire to greatness again, but our current initiative process only throws us a shovel when we are down in a hole.

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