Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Interview: Heather Mac Donald on California in Decline

Legend Ed Driscoll interview with Mac Donald.
I think it’s the most beautiful state in the country; as a native, I’m obviously a little prejudiced, but I think it is a exemplar of identity politics, for one thing. There’s too many institutions that are convinced that the most important thing about its residents is their racial or ethnic national origin identity and — and increasingly, of course, gender and sexual identity. And we see that playing out in university admissions, in ideas about crime and policing and immigration policy, and I think that’s a betrayal of what California used to mean, which was a real meritocratic ideal, that anybody who came, through hard work could really move ahead and the — the state welcomed talent and achievement and did not worry about disparate impact or racial proportionality.

Monday, October 28, 2013

American Boondoggle Meets Chinese Methods

There are too many stories like this.  Bold BIG dreams that disintegrate into money wasted.
From Wolf Richter at Testosterone Pit:


BYD stands for “Build Your Dream.” And maybe that’s what they’re trying to do in China. But here they’re building a nightmare, lushly funded by hapless American taxpayers – and they paid Chinese workers in California $1.50 per hour to do it. Next time Gov. Brown and et al. go on begging missions to China, they need to keep that in mind.
In fact, I reported on the article that ran a few months ago. I guess it didn't work out very good...

 This reminds me of a story I thought I covered earlier: Millions spent on California water-storage plan that leaks.  Ideas that just aren't well thought out....
“They had a great vision,” said Reddy Pakala, who as Ventura County’s water director was expecting to benefit from the 18-mile-long trough running below orchards, tree farms and ranches. “It doesn’t work the way they told us it would work.” The Las Posas Basin Aquifer Storage and Recovery Project, about 50 miles northwest of Los Angeles, illustrates the risks of what’s known as groundwater banking — warehousing water below ground in aquifers to pump out during dry spells or emergencies.

Imagine a bathtub beneath the earth. If geologic conditions are right, water can be added to such a basin, supplementing naturally occurring groundwater and creating a reserve for future use, much like a water tank.

But at Las Posas, water instead disappeared.

Fed govt: No, Nevada, you cannot have oil-and-gas prosperity

And you know my #1 Posit: Disallow the Federal Government from owning land. The Federal Government amazingly owns over 84% of NV.  How is this possible?

They own so much of it, NV can't do a lot of drilling for oil like could have otherwise.

The only major obstacle to this potential boon? You guessed it: The federal government owns and controls most of Nevada, and while they will occasionally auction of some mineral rights and approve some drilling permits, they have steadily blocked the type of large-scale development we’re seeing elsewhere in the country. Unfortunately for Nevadans and Americans in general, that energy development could provide, according to one study’s estimates, more than 21,000 jobs and $100 million in revenue for Nevada — i.e., exactly the type of economic growth of which we’re sorely in need.

High school cheerleader car wash violates environmental laws

Environmental witch hunt.  So, when it rains on dirty cars, the dirt and grime DON'T end up in the storm water system?  The only other contaminant is liquid soap or detergent which nowadays is biodegradable.  So, what exactly is the pollutant?
“We had a visit from the city of San Jose Environmental Services Department who said that the car washes at Hoover [Middle School] are in violation of water discharge laws, therefore we had to cancel this and all future car washes,” said an email that was sent out to neighborhood email lists on Oct. 18.

“Anything that is not storm water or rain water is considered a pollutant,” said Jennie Loft, acting communications manager for San Jose’s Environmental Services Department. “If it goes into a storm drain, that pollutant will harm wildlife and habitats in the creeks. Water goes directly from the storm drains into our creeks.”
And these city workers are able to harass cheerleaders while San Jose is struggling with its budget.  If you ask me, the city hasn't cut its budget enough.


In his 2013-14 budget message, Mayor Chuck Reed wrote that while the city has managed to avoid service cuts for the second year in a row, San Jose needs “tens of millions of dollars more in annual funding” to restore services to pre-recession levels and needs to continue city worker pension reform.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

California Makes U.S. Citizenship Obsolete

Another great example that Leftists really never gave a shit about the little guy - the little US CITIZEN guy, that is.  All that matters is their ideology.  YOU can go to hell as far as they are concerned.

One of the historical hallmarks of tyrannical regimes is selective law enforcement. In California, leftist Gov. Jerry Brown has signed bills into law that have enshrined selective enforcement with regard to illegal aliens, violating federal immigration law in the process. His equally leftist Attorney General Kamala Harris has also decided the state will do whatever it wishes in terms of complying with federal law. Both of them do so with the utmost confidence that a compromised DOJ run by a corrupt Attorney General is more than willing look the other way. Eric Holder is confident he can look the other way because he has a “kindred soul” in President Obama, who unilaterally and unconstitutionally granted de facto amnesty to millions of illegal aliens, bypassing Congress in the process–even as that same Congress currently plots behind closed doors to reward millions of law-breakers in return for cheap votes and cheap labor.

This is where America stands in 2013. If left unchecked, one of the great ironies of all time may eventually be realized: millions of illegal aliens who have come to America to escape a Third World ethos, where the rule of law is supplanted by the rule of man, may discover, for all intents and purposes, they are right back where they started.

Fixing California: Regulation gone wild

Well, hey, you guys in CA voted for Democrats.  Did you expect anything different?  Wow.  An amazing article.
On March 12, 2009, officials from the California Air Resources Board met with representatives of U.S. automakers and auto-supply firms to discuss vehicle-paint standards that state regulators were moving to implement. Soon afterward, the auto-industry insiders’ WardsAuto website detailed how the meeting had left some attendees stunned — and major paint suppliers “tearing their hair out.”

The air board wanted to require heat-reflecting paint on vehicles as part of its effort to improve fuel efficiency. But its proposed “cool paints” initiative would have amounted to a de facto ban on black cars and trucks. And there was a fatal shortcoming with the board’s plan: Such vehicle paint didn’t yet exist.


A Tale of Two States, CA and NV: Part III

NV still has some of the highest unemployment in the nation.  But the state seems to be working hard to bring that down.  The article makes the point that NV will have to expand and grow new industries in order to make meaningful inroads in the job market.

Nevada has made tremendous progress, but it also fell further than most. For instance, its unemployment rate dropped 4.5 percentage points in the past two years — but it’s still the highest in the nation. And the state’s recovery isn’t going as fast as some would hope. Analysis from the Wall Street Journal suggested that Nevada wouldn’t return to its pre-recession employment peak until 2018.

Experts told CalWatchdog that Nevada still has to overcome serious deficiencies to reach its full potential.

University of Nevada, Las Vegas political science professor David Damore noted that, while Nevada ranks well in surveys about taxes and regulations, the state does much worse in other places like education, health care and infrastructure. He said that Nevada will have to have a more educated and better trained workforce before it can reasonably expect more major companies to move to the state.


A Tale of Two States, CA and NV: Part II

Calwatchdog.com continues their reporting on CA/NV:
Nevada’s pitch to firms interested in expanding or relocating to the state is simple. The state has some of the lowest taxes in America. California’s top income tax rate is 13.3 percent; Nevada has no state income tax.

Nevada’s regulations are limited. Given the state’s size, working with government is quick and easy (California businesses often complain about how long routine approvals take). Some firms — though certainly not all — are coaxed with even more tax incentives. And Las Vegas — known for its tourism, as well as the benefits that come with being a large metropolitan area — has always been a major selling point.

A patchwork assortment of agencies remains tasked with selling that message to firms that might want to expand or grow in Nevada.

At the top is the Governor’s Office of Economic Development. Historically, the lieutenant governor was tasked with running economic development in Nevada, but 2011 legislation centralized power in the governor’s office by creating the OED.

Fixing California: The green gentry’s class warfare

Ideology.  It's all about ideology.  No matter what. It's ideology even if it results in the destruction of everything.
In this sense, today's green progressives, notes historian Fred Siegel, are most akin to late 19th century Tory radicals such as William Wordsworth, William Morris and John Ruskin, who objected to the ecological devastation of modern capitalism, and sought to preserve the glories of the British countryside. In the process, they also opposed the “leveling” effects of a market economy that sometimes allowed the less-educated, less well-bred to supplant the old aristocracies with their supposedly more enlightened tastes.

...

Due to the rise of the green gentry, California is becoming divided between a largely white and Asian affluent coast, and a rapidly proletarianized, heavily Hispanic and African-American interior. Palo Alto and Malibu may thrive under the current green regime, and feel good about themselves in the process, but south Los Angeles, Oakland, Fresno and the Inland Empire are threatened with becoming vast favelas.

This may constitute an ideal green future — with lower emissions, population growth and family formation — for whose wealth and privilege allow them to place a bigger priority on nature than humanity. But it also means the effective end of the California dream that brought multitudes to our state, but who now may have to choose between permanent serfdom or leaving for less ideal, but more promising, pastures.


Massive Barge On San Francisco Bay Likely Secret Google Facility

Out-of-the-box thinking by Google runs smack into a bureaucracy that is incapable of thinking, period.


A BCDC official confirmed the agency has held discussions with Google about “hypothetical operations” on the water, but he complained the tech giant has been vague about how the barge would be used.

Larry Goldzband, BCDC executive director, said Google is free to build whatever it wants but the company needs to define the structure’s purpose if it wants a permit.

And that’s not the only hurdle Google faces in its quest for a permit. Docking the barge for an extended period of time at Fort Mason would qualify as “bay fill,” said a source with long experience in waterfront issues.

“The law is crystal clear in this case: The Bay is not to be used for something that can be built on land,” Goldzband said.

Friday, October 25, 2013

ObamaCare website ranks with the "World's Worst Airline" North Korean website

As I read this article I was struck by the similarities in the problems with the North Korean website http://www.airkoryo.com.kp/en with the problems that have plagued the Obamacare website.

From CNN:

After multiple trials to book a one-way ticket from Shengyang to Pyongyang, we failed to secure any reservation. Instead, we ended up with this message day after day: “We cannot find any flights for your flight schedule. Please change your schedule and try again.”

Other users have also reported slow response speeds, availability issues and other errors, according to Britain's The Telegraph.

The Korea Times reported that Air Koryo launched its website about one month after the "Supreme Leader" Kim Jong-un carried out an unannounced inspection of North Korea’s main air hub Sunan International Airport in July.

Kim called upon North Korea "to catch up with international standards" during the visit.
Yeah, we need nationalized healthcare like the rest of the world.   We need to catch up with them!

"Dear Leaders" from both countries fail miserably!

Here's one of the earlier reports of the ObamaCare website:

During the first few hours of a six-month enrollment period for health coverage via the online marketplaces, both state-run health insurance exchanges and HealthCare.gov, which is the portal for residents of more than 30 states, were plagued by crashes, long load times and error messages. The exchanges, also called marketplaces, are intended for people who don't get health benefits at work or are uninsured.




Over-Reaching California EPA Regulators Promoted A False Breast Cancer Link

That's a shocker!  The CA EPA overstating cancer claims?  No way!

All CARB and CA EPA have done is lie about the "health benfitits" of getting rid of diesel or coal power plants or other such nonsense.  And the deal with second hand cigarette smoke is a dead horse that people just keep beating.

At the time of the Cal EPA report, two prominent epidemiologists (one of whom was the Vice President for Epidemiology at the American Cancer Society ) came out and publicly criticized the agency’s conclusion that the evidence supported an association of ETS with breast cancer.

Furthermore, during the public comment period, a number of scientists (myself included) wrote in to correct errors and omissions in the draft report. However, there is no evidence that critical comments were given any attention by the agency.
They ignored the experts.  As the saying goes, why let the facts get in the way?

California gun grab triggers Colorado-style recall launch

Let's hope this works.   For places like Oakland where the crime is out of countrol, restricting firearms is no help at all.  In fact, it's putting more people in harms way.
The recall effort is being organized by the newly formed group Free California with the support of Gun Owners of California and several Republican state legislators, including Mr. Donnelly, who’s also running for the 2014 Republican gubernatorial nomination.

The drive comes two weeks after Gov. Jerry Brown signed 11 gun-control bills, including a ban on lead ammunition for hunting, and vetoed six others. Among those vetoed was a bill to ban all semi-automatic rifles with detachable magazines, which would have included many popular hunting rifles and was considered the worst of the bills by gun-rights groups.

Free California spokeswoman Jennifer Kerns said organizers have identified a half-dozen Democratic legislators as possible recall targets, based on their voting records, the party registration in their districts, and the number of valid signatures required to force a recall election.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

'The Pornography of Meat': School offers course exploring connection between misogyny and meat

Of course, it's at a CA college!

A California college has invited a speaker to teach students that eating meat is misogynistic, and that our society degrades fish because "we don't view them as individuals."

The lecture, titled "The Sexual Politics of Meat," will take place at the University of Redlands on Monday, and is to explore the "relationship between patriarchal values and meat eating by interweaving the insights of feminism, vegetarianism, animal defense, and literary theory," according to the official website of the speaker, Carol J. Adams.

California Gives Break to Job Seekers With Criminal Past

This is incredible.  A Leftist State pass so many laws that one can't HELP but be charged with something.  Then realizes it, yet keeps all of those laws on the books.

Did it ever occur to these guys that the solution would be to get rid of the laws that are turning people into criminals?  Anyway, this article just doesn't make any sense at all:

California, with the most state and local government employees in the U.S., won’t ask job applicants if they’ve been convicted of a crime, in recognition that growing numbers in the workforce have such records.

A bill signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown requires that state and municipal governments first determine if an applicant is qualified for the job before asking if he or she has a criminal past. It doesn’t stop the agency from doing so later nor does it prohibit background checks before hiring.
Same with the Federal Government.  Instapundit has covered the problem of criminalizing everything often enough:

With the proliferation of criminal law, everyone is a criminal of some sort, whether they know it or not. That means that the most important decision is the decision whether to prosecute. But while we’ve larded criminal procedure with due process, the decision to prosecute — or not — is almost entirely discretionary on the part of prosecutors. We either need to cut back on the criminalization (my first choice) or start cabining prosecutorial discretion.



Wednesday, October 23, 2013

LA Weighs Ban on Genetically Modified Organisms

It's bad enough that CA is running all of its poor out on a rail.  Now they want to take away their food and make them starve.

I just got into a big argument at work about how the Leftists (I don't use the word Liberals anymore) and the Democratic Party no longer care about the poor.  They don't care about the little guy.  All they care about is their Leftist Agenda and Ideology.

Los Angeles is considering a ban on the cultivation, sale, and distribution of genetically modified organisms that would make the city the largest GMO-free zone in the nation, reports say.

City Councilmen Paul Koretz and Mitch O'Farrell on Friday introduced a motion to curb growth and proliferation of GMO seeds and plants within the city, The Huffington Post reported.

It wouldn't affect the sale of foods containing genetically modified ingredients[JG: wink!  wink!].

"We don't want to consume mystery food," O'Farrell told The Huffington Post. "Since there's currently no requirement, anyone could unwittingly purchase a genetically modified product and not know it. I think that's irresponsible."

Yeah, the complete ban of GMOs is something the left would NEVER do!  God forbid!

NEW: A Tale of Two States, CA and NV: Part I

Calwatchdog. com does yeoman's work on CA issues.  They are carrying a series of articles comparing CA with NV.  The first one sets the stage after the disastrous drop in the economy not so long ago.

Recently, Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law a new pact with Nevada, effectively conceding to Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval’s demands that California be more open to economic development along the beautiful Lake Tahoe shoreline. It was a rare moment of agreement — created through deft political maneuvering on Nevada’s behalf — between two states that have taken different approaches to taxes, regulations, environmentalism and development.

For Californians, the moment should also be a teachable lesson about the differences between the two states — and how those differences will ultimately affect the quality of each state. But to understand how California will be affected, it’s important to first look at where Nevada was, where it is now, and where it’s headed.

It begins with the Great Recession.

California transgender law could face ballot initiative

Local 10 News:
A new effort is underway in San Diego to overturn a new state law allowing some schoolchildren the right to use any bathroom they choose.

In the past six weeks, Dran Reese has been busy collecting signatures. She heads Salt & Light Council, a nonprofit dedicated to promoting biblical values, and she believes the welfare of children is on the line.

"If this becomes the norm in public schools, we are just asking for trouble. This is a travesty of justice," said Reese.

They've got 500,000 signatures so far.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

HOW TO SAVE CALIFORNIA IN 3 EASY STEPS

SSSSSHHHHHHHH!!!!!!  Don't let CA know about this!!

Doesn't matter.  CA won't listen.

1.  Drill for oil and gas
2.  Wisconsin-style labor reforms
3.  Flat tax 6%




Dan Walters: California courts muscle up for money

The CA Judicial system is still in shambles.  That's why the fines are so high.


In brief, the budget did little to relieve the severe cutbacks in trial court operations that have been imposed in recent years, and thus did little to heal the sharp division within the state’s judiciary – judge vs. judge – over how the pain has been allocated.

The Alliance of California Judges, a rebel group, has charged that the state’s judicial bureaucracy has been spending too much money on itself, on a grandiose courthouse construction program and on a statewide “case management” computer system that proved to be inoperative, leaving trial courts starved for money.

Monday, October 21, 2013

New study finds spike in sugary drink consumption among California adolescents

Well, we know what this means:  CA should pass a law!

These types of studies are not very believable.  At least, not to me.  Taking surveys and asking people about their consumption is just not very accurate and way too subjective.

Based on interviews with more than 40,000 California households conducted by the California Health Interview Survey (CHIS), the study, "Still Bubbling Over: California Adolescents Drinking More Soda and Other Sugar-Sweetened Beverages," provides a comprehensive look at youth (2- to 17-year-olds) consumption of sugary drinks, charting consumption patterns from 2005–07 to 2011–12

The study, which also provides county-by-county youth consumption rates, was produced collaboratively by the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research and the California Center for Public Health Advocacy.

And honestly, it's none of their damn business.


World's Largest CSP Plant Completes First Synchronization to Electric Grid in California, an Industrial Info News Alert

A milestone has been reached.
The world's largest concentrating solar power (CSP) project, located in California's Mohave Desert, began generating electricity late last month. On September 24, Unit 1 of the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System (ISEGS) produced its first electricity, which was synchronized to the power grid. That electricity went to Pacific Gas & Electric Company (San Francisco), a unit of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG) (San Francisco, California).  

This project has been plagued with lawsuits.  Oh, and the cost of those lawsuits will be rolled into YOUR ELECTRIC BILL.

High-speed rail construction begins in California with an uncertain future

Finally.  The actual construction has started!  In Fresno, of all places.  I'm curious what the UHaul index will look like next month.

Now, engineering work has finally begun on the first 30-mile segment of track in Fresno, a city of 500,000 people with soaring unemployment and a withering downtown. Rail is meant to help this place, with construction jobs and improved access to opportunities once the job is complete. But the region that could benefit most from the project is also where opposition has grown most fierce.

"I just wish it would go away, this high-speed rail. I just wish it would go away," says Gary Lanfranco, whose restaurant in Fresno is slated to be demolished to make way for rerouted traffic.
The samples of people getting their land taken from them is very sad.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Map of the 2014 State Business Tax Climate Index

TX: #11
CA: #48

'nuff said.





Clif Bar & Company Moving Into Twin Falls; Adding 250 Jobs

That is, expansion isn't in CA. I love Clif bars.
"Clif bar is an incredibly vibrant company that is going to allow us to strive and inspire to realize the strategic plan and more importantly they are going to be a great quality of corporate citizens. This means additional jobs and additional investment,” said Travis Rothweiler, Twin Falls City Manager.

Initially, the plant will create up to 250 jobs.

However, the company plans to grow the plant's capacity over time, which may create up to 450 total jobs.

Is California's centrist, less-rancorous governance a lesson for D.C.?

What is this?  Some kind of joke?  Banning lead bullets is so centrist.  Not!

The turnaround from just 10 years ago — striking in tone, productivity and, at least on fiscal issues, moderation — is a lesson in the power of one-party rule.
Yeah.  There was one-party rule  in another place.  It was called the Soviet Union.
“You see Republicans voting for immigration reform, you see Democrats voting for streamlining environmental regulations,” said Dan Schnur, director of the Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics at the University of Southern California. “You never would have seen that before.”
Yes, we've put those stupid, damn idiotic Republicans in their place. They're now in the back of the bus and they say "yes massa!"  and "no massa!"  Yep! all is peaceful and calm now!

Now we can really fuck the little guy.

You know what I think?  I think there is collusion going on. All of a sudden there are articles about CA being CENTRIST???

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Study Finds Tripling Tobacco Tax Would Ignite Smuggling

Well, sort of a big "duh".

The California Foundation for Commerce and Education report on The State and Local Impact of Tobacco Prices on Smuggling and Black Market Sales found that, by failing to account for smuggling, proponents overestimate tax revenue from tobacco products by $500 million 
annually due to smuggling caused by the tax increase. “In addition, lost legitimate retail sales will eliminate approximately 11,000 direct retail jobs,” it concluded.

“The literature suggests that the $2 excise tax increase may create the unintended consequence of increasing 
organized crime in California,” the study found. 

Ah!  The old UC!  Unintended Consequences!

Roseville’s Revionics Inc. moving HQ to Austin, Texas

Well, there is a consequence of moving a bunch of CA liberals to TX.

Revionics said it will quadruple its office space in Austin and is already recruiting in that market. It said it will maintain its other offices in Scottsdale, Ariz., and London. The company employs about 120 in the United States. Spellman said active recruiting is ongoing at all offices, including Roseville.

The company opened an office in Austin in September 2012. At the time, Revionics cited the advantages of Austin as a technology hub.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Covered California removes online doctor directory riddled with wrong information

There is a lot I didn't cover in my 40 Years Of Obamacare that I could have.  Who would have thought that the Federal Government couldn't even get a website right after THREE YEARS?

The California Medical Association said it found mistakes such as obstetricians labeled as ophthalmologists and the wrong doctors described as fluent in Russian and Farsi, the Los Angeles Times reported (http://lat.ms/1aqdCqp ).

The search tool for doctors and hospitals has been offline since Oct. 9 while fixes are being made. An exchange spokesman told the Times it might be restored sometime in the next week.

The site's shutdown may prove to be a headache for California residents signing up for coverage under the new federal health care law.
To be fair, the insurance companies ran into the same issue...

...back in 1997.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Analysis: Bills signed by Brown indicate California may not be as liberal as it seemed in 2013

Only a Marxist would say something like this.

At first glance, it might seem that California lived up to its reputation for unmitigated liberalism in 2013.

Gov. Jerry Brown signed bills to let illegal immigrants get driver's licenses and practice law; raise the minimum wage to $10 an hour, the highest of any state; and make California the only state this year to increase access to abortions.

But look a little closer, and the year wasn't as far to the left as many think...

So a car traveling 180 mpg instead of 200 mpg is really not so fast, after all.  What a stupid, stupid article.


Wednesday, October 16, 2013

California poised to adopt first-in-nation energy storage mandate

I think this is really cool.  But the technology isn't ready - just like the carbon dioxide capturing isn't ready.  So what do I expect?

Fraud.

Projects going 200% over budget.

Projects that just plain FAIL.

Electricity costs doubling.

The proposed energy storage decision was written by PUC Commissioner Carla Peterman, who was appointed to the agency by Gov. Jerry Brown in late 2012. She notes that storage devices are commonplace: Think about the batteries in consumer electronics, or Tupperware, or the fat cells in our own bodies. But the ability to store electricity on a large scale to save it for when it is most needed has been elusive.

"Integrating renewables is complex, and the complexity is increasing as more solar and wind comes online," said Peterman, who previously served on the California Energy Commission. "Storage has a lot of potential, but there's no one solution. We need to develop this market to see what the potential is."


Sunday, October 13, 2013

Doctor Housing Bubble Blog: Baby boomers and the golden handcuffs of real estate: Will low inventory be a trend for the next few years?

I still can't figure out how I landed on this website.  But i was rather fortuitous since he talks about the housing situation in CA.  My recommendation?  Sell your house and move OUT of CA.
There is a large contingent of California homeowners that have what I call the golden handcuffs of real estate. They are cash poor and equity rich. That is, if they are willing to sell and move away from the more expensive market they can cash in their lottery ticket. Many will not. This trend is part of the stripping away of the middle class in California.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

ObamaCare rates trigger more sticker shock

I just don't get it.  Didn't you KNOW this was what would happen?  Didn't you KNOW IT?  How could you NOT know it? I am no rocket scientist.  **I** figured it out.  Why couldn't you?
As far as the rollout is concerned, Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., said Friday that "the problems with the exchanges are systematic, profound and indisputable," and he called on Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to resign for what he called "gross incompetence."

Posit No. 1 Disallow the Federal Government from owning land

Take it away from them.  Give it to the states.  Give it to the people.  But just DO NOT allow the Federal Government to own land.  I was preaching this years ago when I first started this blog (but I accidentally blew it away).

Here is how much land the Federal Government owns by state:

It's PATHETIC that the US Government owns almost HALF of CA and even worse owns almost ALL of Nevada.

People Storm Barricades At Lincoln Memorial

O'bama really thinks by closing up the various monuments in DC, the Republicans will get the blame?  Is he that stupid?

Yes.  Yes, he is.


Kristin Olsen: Drop corn ethanol mandate to save California dairies

I call this the Clash of Government Regulations: Damned if you do and Damned...if you do.
Our California dairies have suffered immensely in recent years due to a variety of factors, including low milk prices; but one major factor is the exponentially rising cost of feed.

The federal Renewable Fuel Standard program is the primary cause of this cost challenge because it mandates that gasoline consist of up to 15 percent corn ethanol, which uses the same corn farmers use to feed their livestock.

The competition between the corn market and the government corn ethanol mandate is creating grave challenges for our California farmers, and their ability to feed their livestock and, ultimately, the nation.

Toxic flame retardants under fire in California

I've discussed this before.  A problem that was caused by government law almost 40 years ago!
The new standards - proposed by the Bureau of Electronic and Appliance Repair, Home Furnishings and Thermal Insulation - would overturn a 1975 state rule that required furniture foam to withstand an open flame.

That standard led manufacturers to infuse upholstery foam with pounds of chemicals linked to health problems including infertility, cancer, hormone disruption and learning disabilities. But it didn’t reduce fire deaths, critics said. Similar chemicals are added to insulation materials to prevent fires from spreading within structures.

Hollywood & Rob Schneider come out of California's (political) closet

I hope I'm detecting cracks in the Democratic firewall that they've built:

Former Saturday Night Live star, actor, screenwriter and director Rob Schneider – a lifelong Democrat – is throwing his support behind Republican candidate for Governor Tim Donnelly this week, in an all-out effort to save California.

In an exclusive to the Washington Times, Rob Schneider reveals, “As a lifelong Democrat, I am horrified by what’s happening in this State with the Democrat Supermajority now in the legislature in California. The Democrats in my party have abandoned me, and so I have abandoned them.”


California's Green Trade War. Sacramento uses carbon mandates to punish out-of-state businesses.

Sorry, you can't have your cake and eat it, too.
What this means is that California's crude oil now rates the same as Alaskan light—even though California's actual carbon intensity is four times as high. Yet another convolution puts oil recovered from Canada's Alberta tar sands at a ratings disadvantage in California.

Now comes the kicker: By the California Air Resources Board's own admission, the state's fuel standard "does not result in reductions in greenhouse gas emissions on a global scale" because more carbon-intense fuels will be sold elsewhere anyway.

California environmentalists, logging industry lock horns over burned trees

So, even DEAD TREES are sacrosanct.  What idiocy.
"If any good can come of this tragedy, it would be the timely salvage of fire-killed timber that could provide employment to local mills and desperately needed economic activity to mountain communities," said McClintock, a member of the House Committee on Natural Resources.

But Rep. Peter DeFazio, ranking Democrat on the committee, said McClintock's bill—which was heard in a committee hearing Oct. 3—"would be a license to clear-cut the entire burn area."

DeFazio said he supports more limited salvage logging, while some environmental groups back almost none at all, saying it hurts forests by removing trees that provide nutrients for soil and habitat for wildlife.
So the ten, twenty, thirty or so years of tree growth that results in thousands of tons of pine needles, leaves, dead tree limbs aren't enough to  fertilize the soil?

Friday, October 11, 2013

California Can No Longer Coast

Article from Fox&Hounds:

The point: America really has become two warring camps, worse even than Charlie Sheen and Denise Richards. And Brown’s California is leading only one of them.

We know all this, of course. But what we tend to overlook is that two distinct political cultures have formed. And are firming up. While Brown signs legislation giving illegal immigrants the right to have a drivers license, 34 states have passed voter I.D. laws of some kind, many of them this year. While California is moving to make gun ownership even stricter, voters in Colorado last month bounced out two state senators in recall elections because they had voted to ban magazines that hold more than 15 rounds. Just last week, the Wisconsin attorney general put out a press release touting the fact that his office had issued its 200,000th permit in the two years since that state passed its concealed-carry law; he bragged about how his office can process more than 1,000 concealed-carry applications a week, no problem.

Dan Walters: New California immigration laws could increase chaos

Ya think?

“While Washington waffles on immigration, California’s forging ahead,” Brown said while signing one batch of immigration bills. “I’m not waiting.”

One might recall that when Arizona carved out an independent approach a few years ago, empowering local police, in effect, to enforce federal immigration laws, the state was widely criticized.

Immigration is a federal issue, it was said, and Arizona was wrong to substitute its enforcement judgment for that of federal officials.

Now California is doing the same thing in reverse, and may be creating untenable conflicts.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Crowdfunded security in Oakland - It is every block for themselves just like Judge Dredd

And do you think those people paying for the security will ever worry about those that are hired will bash down their doors for stupid reasons or something like this?
“We shouldn’t have to do this,” says Steven Kirsh, who is running the last of the three Rockridge campaigns, “but we need to do this.” He doesn’t see the Oakland Police Department suddenly getting more resources, so in order to protect his belongings, family and property value, the $82 per household doesn’t seem like much to ask, for 12 hours of patrolling five days a week. For a four month trial it will work out to less than a dollar a day.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

California court rules spanking with wooden spoon not abuse

Another whiff of sanity from CA.  But don't think I think this is a pattern!
The appeals court said the spanking came close to abuse, but that social workers and the lower court judge failed to consider the family's entire circumstances.

Gonzalez and her husband testified that other forms of punishment such as groundings and taking away her phone had failed to persuade their 12-year-old daughter to do her schoolwork and avoid gang culture. The parents said that other family members had testified that spankings in the household were a rarity.
The child welfare workers are still employed.  So they can make life miserable for more people.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Dan Walters: California’s cities face pension woes

From the Sacramento Bee. Vallejo is a mess:

When Vallejo ended its sojourn through bankruptcy in 2011, it was paying CalPERS $11 million a year – about 14 percent of its budget – but it’s now $15 million, or 18 percent, and growing.

“Now we have to figure out a way to pay for these new CalPERS rates,” Vallejo’s finance director, Deborah Lauchner, told the Reuters financial news service. “Every time we react to the last rate change they impose, they come up with another one. I understand they want to improve their funding status, but it’s on the backs of the cities.”

While Deis may be proud of avoiding Stockton pension cuts, the underlying problem is still unresolved.

Voters may weigh in next year on a proposed state ballot measure that would allow local governments to cut future pension benefits they cannot afford.

Veto Halts Bill for Jury Duty by Noncitizens in California

Wow!  Another whiff of sanity from CA.  Too bad it's just a whiff and not a tornado.
But the governor drew the line at allowing legal immigrants to serve on juries. “Jury service, like voting, is quintessentially a prerogative and responsibility of citizenship,” Mr. Brown said in a brief veto message. “This bill would permit lawful permanent residents who are not citizens to serve on a jury. I don’t think that’s right.”

Monday, October 7, 2013

California poverty even worse under new measurement

I've read other articles on this.  The thing is, you don't have to tell the poor how bad it is. THEY ARE LEAVING.  All that will be left are the really destitute who can't rent a U-Haul to escape the grinding poverty in that state.

But you know what the CA government solution to the plight will be? Raise taxes and spend more money.  Oh, and enact more regulations.

Poverty in California is serious, pervasive, and far higher than the official numbers have led us to believe. That's the outcome of a new study from the Stanford Center on Poverty and Inequality, using a new measuring methodology developed by the nonprofit Public Policy Institute of California. Unlike the official poverty rate, the methodology (called the California Poverty Measure) weighs local differences in cost of living and also usage of safety net benefits.


California Tax Miracle

Yes, I spewed coffee all over my computer screen.  Could this be the beginning of things to come??

Nah.

The tax default for California politicians is always "more," so brace yourself for rare good news. Governor Jerry Brown last week signed a law repealing a $120 million retroactive income tax increase on about 2,500 small business owners and investors.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Feds Raid Family Grocery Store's Checking Account Over Innocent Bank Deposits

This has GOT to stop!!

Texas Vs. California: Wide Gap In Policy Opposites

Wow!  A lot of good articles this weekend.  This one in IBD by Laffer:

In education, the single most important function of state and local government, student test scores administered by the U.S. Department of Education show Texas ranks a little above average among the 50 states while California remains stuck in the bottom five.

The same story holds for highways. And when it comes to poverty as a share of population, Texas has a lot less of it than California.

As this comparison makes clear, the economic policies that work best at the state level are those that promote growth. Many states — from Texas and Kansas in the heartland to Wisconsin, Ohio and Michigan in the Midwest to Florida and Tennessee in the South and New Jersey in the Northeast — are embracing this model.

The more states that move toward this training regimen, the better off all Americans will be. The issue of good governance isn't about personalities or ideologies; it's about results. Raising taxes is not the answer to any question.

Showing Contempt For Its Citizens, California Issues Driver's Licenses To Illegals

Well worded article on the subject.
What we have here is a sea change — political leadership in California that no longer serves citizens but succors those with the loudest voices, citizen or not. For Brown, aliens apparently are an even higher political priority than his beloved green lobby, given that the this lover of public transportation is encouraging illegals to drive pollution-spewing cars. The measure also contradicts his carefully cultivated image as a fiscal moderate. Some $220 million will be needed to implement the law and fees illegals must pay will cover only half of it.
I smell the odor...of war.

Trust Act Signed In California To Limit Deportation Program

The "Trust Act".  Talk about an Orwellian title!!!  This is sick and disgusting what is happening in CA.
"It makes it all the more important that California be on the lead on this," he said. "If we get the governor's signature, it will be really a benchmark. It will be one of the first states that has gone on record about this program. ... And hopefully, it will signal to D.C. that they need to start moving."
Yeah.  In the lead on this, alright.  But who wants to follow CA over the cliff?

2001 New Beetle with Diesel engine: 43 mpg

Yep!  That's what I clocked on the open highway.  I had to make a business trip from Houston to Lake Charles.  I filled up outside Beltway 8 and the next day filled up again near my home.  About 286 miles round trip and about 6.5 gallons of diesel.

So, this started me to thinking:  What if I bought a Prius?  How much would it cost me?  This was a little difficult.  In fact, the numbers probably still aren't apples-to-apples.  I decided to do a comparison of a new lowest priced VW Beetle TDI to a new lowest priced Toyota Prius.

Cars.com is a pretty good one-stop-shop.  They also have a built in calculator to figure out your monthly payments.  Based on the MPG numbers listed on their website, here are the results for monthly expenses:


Toyota Prius VW Beetle
729.24 per month pmts 579.21 per month pmts
48 mpg 41 mpg
50 per day driven 50 per day driven
20 days per month 20 days per month
1000 miles/month 1000 miles/month
21 gallons/month 24 gallons/month
3 $/gal for regular 4 $/gal for diesel
63 $/month 98 $/month
792 $/month 677 $/month


The VW Beetle monthly costs are 85% of the Toyota Prius.

Now, this was a comparison of HIGHWAY MILES driven.

For miles driven in the city, the numbers are a lot closer, but still favor the VW Beetle:


Toyota Prius VW Beetle
729.24 per month pmts 579.21 per month pmts
51 mpg 32 mpg
50 per day driven 50 per day driven
20 days per month 20 days per month
1000 miles/month 1000 miles/month
20 gallons/month 31 gallons/month
3 $/gal for regular 4 $/gal for diesel
59 $/month 125 $/month
788 $/month 704 $/month
Here's the link for the VW Beetle TDI

Here's the link for the Toyota Prius

The financing was based on no money down, 36 months and 2.73% interest rate.

In case the links don't work anymore:



California’s New Feudalism Benefits a Few at the Expense of the Multitude

I'm back to having to take my daughter to school again.  My wife volunteers at a school near us that requires her to be there around 8am. So, posting will be light to not at all.

Of course, if I stumble on a really great article, I'll post it.  Like this one.  And it's at the Daily Beast, which is the last place I would have expected an article like this.


Like medieval serfs, increasing numbers of Californians are downwardly mobile, and doing worse than their parents: native born Latinos actually have shorter lifespans than their parents, according to one recent report. Nor are things expected to get better any time soon. According to a recent Hoover Institution survey, most Californians expect their incomes to stagnate in the coming six months, a sense widely shared among the young, whites, Latinos, females, and the less educated.
And those serfs are trying to get out as fast as they can.  Just read my post on the U-Haul Index I've set up.

Friday, October 4, 2013

U-Hual Index for October

I almost forgot about my update.  Here it is for October 8th, 2013:


DateFresno=>SA SA=>Fresno   ratio SF=>SA SA=>SF   ratio
4/8/2013 2156 653 3.302 1493 862 1.7320
5/7/2013 2156 576 3.743 1617 862 1.8759
7/9/2013 1728 576 3.000 1395 862 1.6183
8/6/2013 1728 614 2.814 1674 616 2.7175
9/5/2013 1728 614 2.814 1883 616 3.0568
10/8/20131728691
2.50113958211.6991


Something that should have been obvious to me, that U-Haul rentals most likely track home buying/leasing.  Home purchases are usually in the Spring to late Summer which coincides with school schedules.  That's my reasoning, anyway.


What Is the Actual Status of Carbon Capture Technology?

IEEE website asks this question, and it is a good one.  For power plants to lower their carbon dioxide, they have to do something with it.  The easiest - well, most straightforward solution is to bury it.

Since the EPA is pushing this idea hard, they must think that CO2 sequestration could be considered "conventional technology".

But is it?

Apparently, not.


Integrated gasification combined-cycle technology involves coal gasification and then the separation of carbon dioxide from other flue gases, including those containing nitrogen. Can Kemper be considered a demonstration of a technology ready for commercialization? By no stretch of the imagination.

...

All that is well and good, but of course [technology developed at Schwarze Pumpe] does not add up to having a demonstrated technology ready for commercial deployment.
So, the EPA is pushing technology that isn't ready for commercialization.  And we will all pay the price.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Study: Ozone not linked with asthma hospitalizations in major California hospital system

Junk Science decided to take CA and the EPA to task concerning the harmful effects of Ozone to those with asthma.  Guess what?  There are none that can be detected!
These results indicate that O3 and PM2.5 measurements in the Sacramento Valley Air Basin were not correlated with asthma admissions at the UCMDC for the three-year period January 1, 2010 to December 31, 2012.

If ambient O3 and PM2.5 measurements were in fact associated with hospital admissions for asthma, one could reasonably expect — and, in fact — ought to find some correlation in these data. But such a correlation was not identified.
There.  That's done.  Now maybe the EPA and CA will change things, right?  Right??