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Sunday, February 26, 2012

Governor Moonbeam goes dark

by digby

Sometimes you just want to give up. This is a seriously great idea. And Governor Jerry Brown seems determined to tank it.

Howie Sez:

So how does our experienced problem-solving governor in his third term and umpteenth elected office overall, and his merry band of establishment Sacramento Democrats, screw it up? Let us count the ways he does:

Proposes their own idiotic tax ballot measure that sucks in the following ways: (1) It raises sales taxes. Regressive and wildly unpopular. (2) It raises taxes on those making over $250,000 instead of just those making over $1 million. Unpopular (a lot of Californians think they might make that much one day). (3) Sends all the new revenue straight to the General Fund in Sacramento instead of counties so they can spend it on refunding prisons or who knows what. Politically stupid and unpopular (the legislature has a lower approval rating than Congress, if you can believe it). (4) Lasts only 5 years, so we have to do this all over again when, because of Prop 13, we have no property tax revenue coming in and income/sales tax revenue drops off a cliff when we enter another recession, so more cuts on the way. Plain stupid public policy.

Raises money to pay for signature-gathering and the campaign from the following entities all of whom, by the way, have business before the governor: Occidental Petroleum ($250,000), Blue Shield ($100,000), Kaiser ($250,000), American Beverage Association ($250,000) CA Hospital Association ($500,000), various casinos ($375,000), PG&E ($25,000), California Beer and Beverage Distributors ($75,000). Corrupt, scummy and not exactly good press.

• Gets all his buddies in the Legislature, namely Speaker Perez and Senate President Steinberg, to kow-tow to his line and decree no Legislature Democrat shall endorse the Millionaires Tax of 2012, they shall only endorse raising taxes on their own constituents by way of his stupid measure. Right, because in this Occupy/99% environment, I really want my caucus members explaining to reporters why they oppose raising taxes on greedy millionaires and want to raise them on all the poor people in my district. Politically suicidal and immoral.

• Has his loyal sidekick, political adviser Steve Glazer (the one with the odd homoerotic twitter handle @steveforjerry) to tweet various nasty things about the folks working to pass the Millionaires Tax of 2012, such as that they are in political denial and a circular firing squad. Divisive and obnoxious not to mention the fact that his boss is backing the less-popular measure that's more likely to fail and screw a lot of people over if it passes. If you are concerned about a firing squad, Steve, maybe you should, uh... stop firing?

• Goes to the CA Dem Party Convention two weekends ago in San Diego to tell a ballroom full of activists and delegates that he hasn't quite figured out all this tax measure stuff yet, but don't worry: "you'll get your marching orders soon enough." Haughty and just plain stupid. Thanks Jerry, I was waiting for you to tell me what to do.

• And just this week, releases a made-up poll of just 500 people that tell him what he wants to hear: multiple measures on one ballot will lead to all of them failing. Although funny enough, the same poll shows that the Millionaires Tax of 2012 is actually more popular than his, the 4th straight poll to do so. Transparent tactic.

• And the icing on the cake: rumors fly yesterday that he's proposing a 24% fees hike (over 4 years) for the UC system. So that's right, if you're planning on going to college this fall, you can expect to pay a quarter more than the number you're staring at today. But don't blame Jerry, he's only the one proposing a ballot measure that doesn't fund the UC to help keep fees down while attacking the one frigging ballot measure that does.

Read the whole thing. Oy vey.

This polls really well. The political environment is ripe. And once again the corrupt and risk averse politicians are determined to keep our government corrupt and dysfunctional. It works fine for them, I guess.

As Howie concludes:
I don't know what the hell Jerry Brown is doing, or what kind of political genius Jerry Brown thinks he is, but I ain't waiting around for his marching orders, and neither should you.
If you're a Californian, here's your petition.