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PostPosted: Tue 05 May , 2009 5:17 pm 
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perpetual adolescense is a sad thing to witness

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There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs. - John Rogers


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PostPosted: Wed 06 May , 2009 5:52 am 
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sauronsfinger wrote:
perpetual adolescense is a sad thing to witness


But a fun thing to indulge in. :horse:

But back to the thread topic - here is a list of the propositions:

http://www.voterguide.sos.ca.gov/

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PostPosted: Wed 06 May , 2009 6:09 am 
Als u het leven te ernstig neemt, mist u de betekenis.
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Perhaps with all this global warming a 'rainy-day' budget will never be used?

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Screenshot from the upcoming ROTK: EEE. PJ, I love ya and all you've done to put us Tolkien geeks into the mainstream, but this crosses a line.


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PostPosted: Wed 06 May , 2009 2:57 pm 
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Gov. Schwarzenegger has given job security guarantees to the SEIU members, the cubicle workers and assessors and janitors. Now that he's given those job security guarantees to the expendable employees he's telling the voters that he will have no choice but to lay off the fire fighters if we don't pass his ballot props.

This happened the same week that is Wildfire Awareness week, the same week a television commercial in favor of the props came out with an actor dressed as a fireman, and the same week that an out of season wildfire started.

He's also threatening to empty the jails if his props do not pass, since unlike the expendable employees the prison guards aren't given the job security guarantees.

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It is a myth that coercion is necessary in order to force people to get along together, but it is a persistent myth because it feeds a desire many people have. That desire is to be able to justify hurting people who have done nothing other than offend them in some way.

Last edited by Cenedril_Gildinaur on Tue Feb 30, 2026 13:61 am; edited 426 times in total


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PostPosted: Wed 06 May , 2009 3:42 pm 
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California residents should not despair. Your Governator has a solution to bring prosperity to your state and make you feel very good about living there at the same time.

http://cbs5.com/politics/schwarzenegger ... 02086.html" target="_blank" target="_blank

Will Arnold also push to change the state song to the Afroman anthem "Beause I Got High"?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_qD9uZ8kB8

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Because_I_Got_High" target="_blank

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There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs. - John Rogers


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PostPosted: Wed 06 May , 2009 4:14 pm 
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Cenedril_Gildinaur wrote:
Gov. Schwarzenegger has given job security guarantees to the SEIU members, the cubicle workers and assessors and janitors. Now that he's given those job security guarantees to the expendable employees he's telling the voters that he will have no choice but to lay off the fire fighters if we don't pass his ballot props.


Just the opposite of what is going on in some of the cities: the firefighters and police are eating up the general fund at a million dollars a month, in a totally unsustainable way, because taxes for property, construction, and sales just aren't coming in during this economy. Each firefighter and policeman is getting double his already attractive salary in overtime. Then he gets to retire at 50 with full medical benefits and a very hefty retirement. The cities keep feeding the police/fire salary and retirement fund with their reserves from other departments, until they are dry, then they lay off their cubicle workers and other expendibles (planners, engineers, accountants, lawyers, librarians, parks gardeners, senior center workers, sewer maintainers, electrical workers, IT repairmen, etc.) who are already overworked and understaffed. This goes on until the city goes bankrupt. Then the firefighters and police try to blame someone else for strangling the goose that was trying, but failing, to lay golden eggs for them each month.

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PostPosted: Wed 06 May , 2009 4:51 pm 
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You're also right laureanna.

There are more than a few stories about how police and fire fighter unions, being powerful, are able to procure extremely rich pensions and benefits. And normally the cubicle workers are the ones laid of.

The reverse situation is happening as a political ploy. Once the governator protects those most likely to be laid off, he can present an ultimatum to the taxpayer.

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It is a myth that coercion is necessary in order to force people to get along together, but it is a persistent myth because it feeds a desire many people have. That desire is to be able to justify hurting people who have done nothing other than offend them in some way.

Last edited by Cenedril_Gildinaur on Tue Feb 30, 2026 13:61 am; edited 426 times in total


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PostPosted: Sat 09 May , 2009 2:32 am 
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This just in...

Greens Turn Thumbs Down to Propositions on May 19 Ballot

Quote:
The Green Party of California today - after polling its members and county councils statewide for the past month - strongly urged state voters to vote “no” on all propositions on the May 19 special ballot, calling the plan a “rotten deal.”


Among the honest, 1F seems to be the real dividing point. Some say "it is the only good one on the ballot no matter how weak it is" while others say "it is so very watered down to be useless so let's send a message to Sacramento by opposing all six." Professional politicos like all of them except 1F.

On 1A through 1E, the Greens, the Libertarians, and the Republicans are in agreement - and the general population if the polls are reliable indicators.. Only the Democrats stand out in neutrality or support of 1A through 1E.

Oh, and the Peace and Freedom Feminist Socialist Party also opposes all six.

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It is a myth that coercion is necessary in order to force people to get along together, but it is a persistent myth because it feeds a desire many people have. That desire is to be able to justify hurting people who have done nothing other than offend them in some way.

Last edited by Cenedril_Gildinaur on Tue Feb 30, 2026 13:61 am; edited 426 times in total


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PostPosted: Wed 20 May , 2009 2:27 pm 
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And the props bombed.

1A through 1E, the taxing and spending props, went down 2 to 1. They lost among whites, blacks, asians, and latinos. They lost among men and women. They lost among Republicans, Democrats, and Independents. They lost among conservatives and moderates and almost broke even among liberals.

1F which says "no legislator pay raises if the budget is in deficit" passed by 3 to 1.

The whole deal now has to go back to Sacramento, and a budget must be passed by July 1st according to the laws of the state. They wasted a lot of time with these measures instead of trying to solve the hard budget problems.

This is sweet.

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It is a myth that coercion is necessary in order to force people to get along together, but it is a persistent myth because it feeds a desire many people have. That desire is to be able to justify hurting people who have done nothing other than offend them in some way.

Last edited by Cenedril_Gildinaur on Tue Feb 30, 2026 13:61 am; edited 426 times in total


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PostPosted: Wed 20 May , 2009 8:35 pm 
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In the wake of the ballot results, some are looking at one of the root causes for the problem

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.c ... 164CBA.DTL

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There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs. - John Rogers


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PostPosted: Wed 20 May , 2009 10:01 pm 
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Scrapping the requirement for there to be two-thirds to raise taxes will make it easier to balance the budget on the backs of the taxpayers and relieve the politicians of the burden of having to live within a budget. Since California is already one of the most taxed states in the union, being able to raise taxes even more is a great idea. That way the tough decisions will never have to be made.

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It is a myth that coercion is necessary in order to force people to get along together, but it is a persistent myth because it feeds a desire many people have. That desire is to be able to justify hurting people who have done nothing other than offend them in some way.

Last edited by Cenedril_Gildinaur on Tue Feb 30, 2026 13:61 am; edited 426 times in total


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PostPosted: Wed 20 May , 2009 10:05 pm 
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Quote:
Scrapping the requirement for there to be two-thirds to raise taxes will make it easier to balance the budget on the backs of the taxpayers and relieve the politicians of the burden of having to live within a budget. Since California is already one of the most taxed states in the union, being able to raise taxes even more is a great idea. That way the tough decisions will never have to be made.



As far as balancing the budget "upon the backs of the taxpayers", what other citizens who are not currently taxpayers have available backs to be used for that purpose?

Scrapping the 2/3 requirement will not eliminate the need for elected officials to balance the budget. It will only place California in line with most other states and the way they pass laws. Those states also have legal requirements to balance their budgets regardless if it is done by a simple majority or by a super majority.

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There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs. - John Rogers


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PostPosted: Wed 20 May , 2009 10:19 pm 
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You can balance the budget by cutting spending or raising taxes. Politicians only know that one option exists. That's why the phrase "balance the budget on the backs of the taxpayers" was used, because the other option of cutting spending is ignored. I can understand why some have an ideological dislike of the idea of there being any constraints on politicians or cutting any budgets, but the voters of California have spoken. Attempts to make it easier to raise taxes have been rejected time and again.

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It is a myth that coercion is necessary in order to force people to get along together, but it is a persistent myth because it feeds a desire many people have. That desire is to be able to justify hurting people who have done nothing other than offend them in some way.

Last edited by Cenedril_Gildinaur on Tue Feb 30, 2026 13:61 am; edited 426 times in total


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PostPosted: Wed 20 May , 2009 11:15 pm 
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I have little doubt that politicians - of all stripes - fully know that there is more than one option here. They certainly know that they can cut spending because anyone who lives in the USA and is politically involved has heard that mantra uttered many times in the last few decades. It is well known. As it is with most things, the devil is in the details not in the broader statements of purpose.

Which roads do the people of California want shut down? Which poor persons getting public support do the people of California want to be allowed to go without that help? Which children do the people of California want to go without a public education? Which law enforcement officers do the people of California want fired or laid off? Which prisons do the people of California want to be closed and their prisoners freed and let loose into the general population? Which State lands and parks do the people of California want auctioned off to private develpers to offset the deficits? Which quality of life programs do the people of California want stopped? Which courts do the people of California want to be closed up and shuttered and those cases either never heard of postponed for months or years?

These are but a few of the examples of choices that will have to be made. I wonder if the people of California are ready to make those choices and live with the consequences of those decisions?

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There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs. - John Rogers


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PostPosted: Thu 21 May , 2009 12:25 pm 
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The state and federal governments have done a pretty poor job of "selling themselves"; mostly because they haven't needed to. It's fine to talk about spending cuts and it's going to have to happen, but I don't think the average person understands just how much s/he benefits from having an active, well-funded government. There's some net meme picture floating around of "zero tax" protesters where someone drew arrows to all the government power lines, government traffic lights, government sidewalks, etc. that they're making use of to complain about the government. It makes its point. I wonder what these same people will have to say once services they used to rely on start to disappear? For some reason, I feel pretty confidant they won't take it stoically.


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PostPosted: Thu 21 May , 2009 2:03 pm 
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I agree completely Dave. Like yourself, I too saw that photo ofthe teabagger protest with all the arrows and signs pointing out how they used government services and protectionsto be there protesting against the government. It was great.

Its one thing to spout tired old cliches and slogans about small government and lower taxes and getting government out of our lives. That is easy. Its quite another thing with having to then face the consequences of your actions by cutting government programs and spending. That is the hard part.

Which roads do we let go unrepaired? And do those same potholes then cost us even more money when we pop a tire or break an axle or damage our suspension on our vehicles? Do these unrepaired roadsthen cause accidents which take lives or injure people?

Which parole officers get laid off meaning that nobody is there to check on dangerous peoople in the community? Do we then pay even more for that when they commit crimes against us? Do people pay with their health or even their lives because of such cuts?

Which schools should close when we lay off teachers and other professionals jamming more into already overcrowded classrooms? And do we then pay even more for that when students drop out and become anchors on society for the rest of thier lives?

You could create scores of such choices that will have to answered. And lets hope the choices are faced. It would be terrible if there was a federal baliout to save the day like the cavalry riding in at the last minute. Make people take their tired cliched slogans and see what actually happens when they are even partially put into action.

I would only hope that such a list of cuts would be widely published and debated. And before enacted and the cuts actually made, ask the people to vote again voicing if they really want to follow through on this. I think you would get a far different answer with reality staring them in the face. Not from all. But from most.

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There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs. - John Rogers


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PostPosted: Thu 21 May , 2009 3:04 pm 
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Dave_LF wrote:
The state and federal governments have done a pretty poor job of "selling themselves"; mostly because they haven't needed to. It's fine to talk about spending cuts and it's going to have to happen, but I don't think the average person understands just how much s/he benefits from having an active, well-funded government. There's some net meme picture floating around of "zero tax" protesters where someone drew arrows to all the government power lines, government traffic lights, government sidewalks, etc. that they're making use of to complain about the government. It makes its point. I wonder what these same people will have to say once services they used to rely on start to disappear? For some reason, I feel pretty confidant they won't take it stoically.


I dunno. It's kind of like when a Wal Mart opens next to a Le Expensive Boutique. People who have been using products from the overpriced competitor can be said to have benefited from the overpriced competitor all along, and are now considered ungrateful because they're now getting the same products for a much lower price elsewhere.

True there's a lot the government provides. And they do it without having to ask their customers what they actually want, and they do it without having to convince customers to pay for it. Actually only most of the time they don't have to ask their customers to pay. But the basic question is whether or not the current system is the most efficient system. Must we shop at Le Expensive Boutique for basic items when we could potentially save time and money?

Moreover the debate in California over what's to be cut has gotten really absurd. First Schwarzenegger gives guarantees to all the cubicle workers and janitors that they won't get laid off. Every assessor and every auditor is safe. Having given guarantees to the expendable workers those who ideologically hate the thought of a restrained government are now able to run around screaming that the sky is falling because firefighters, teachers, and police are the only ones not covered by the guarantees and therefore are going to be laid off. Perhaps if the guarantees were given to the critical employees instead? It's a typical tactic - offer to cut the most important stuff and don't offer to cut the least important stuff as a way to convince people there should be no cuts to anything. The sky is not falling, the world is not ending.

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It is a myth that coercion is necessary in order to force people to get along together, but it is a persistent myth because it feeds a desire many people have. That desire is to be able to justify hurting people who have done nothing other than offend them in some way.

Last edited by Cenedril_Gildinaur on Tue Feb 30, 2026 13:61 am; edited 426 times in total


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PostPosted: Thu 21 May , 2009 3:17 pm 
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The sky never falls and the world never ends unless you happend to live in Hiroshima or Nagasaki in 1945.... and even then it only came close.

This debate badly needs to be about actual substance and hard choices and not slogans or metaphors or analogies that mask the reality of it all. Nobody can pretend that cutting government service can be done painlessly and without a public cost. I am most interested in that part of the debate.

I only hope it is frank and detailed.

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There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs. - John Rogers


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PostPosted: Thu 21 May , 2009 3:23 pm 
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True, it's quite possible to abuse it in the other direction and politicians who don't want to make the tough choices are prone to do so. I'm sure California has plenty of fat that it could trim; whether it could balance its budget cutting only fat is the difficult question. And even if it really is fat you're cutting, the whole economy is worse than a zero-sum game at the moment so it's likely that any salary or expenditure you eliminate will revisit you in the form of bankruptcies and unemployment claims (but maybe that will cost you less; hard to say).


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PostPosted: Mon 25 May , 2009 1:21 pm 
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Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman has a good opinion piece on the California situation:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/25/opini ... ef=opinion" target="_blank" target="_blank

here is the heart of it

Quote:
The seeds of California’s current crisis were planted more than 30 years ago, when voters overwhelmingly passed Proposition 13, a ballot measure that placed the state’s budget in a straitjacket. Property tax rates were capped, and homeowners were shielded from increases in their tax assessments even as the value of their homes rose.

The result was a tax system that is both inequitable and unstable. It’s inequitable because older homeowners often pay far less property tax than their younger neighbors. It’s unstable because limits on property taxation have forced California to rely more heavily than other states on income taxes, which fall steeply during recessions.

Even more important, however, Proposition 13 made it extremely hard to raise taxes, even in emergencies: no state tax rate may be increased without a two-thirds majority in both houses of the State Legislature. And this provision has interacted disastrously with state political trends.

For California, where the Republicans began their transformation from the party of Eisenhower to the party of Reagan, is also the place where they began their next transformation, into the party of Rush Limbaugh. As the political tide has turned against California Republicans, the party’s remaining members have become ever more extreme, ever less interested in the actual business of governing.


Any system that permits a minority one-third plus one to control the much larger majority has to be seriously questioned.

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There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs. - John Rogers


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