Wednesday, January 29, 2014

California Legalized Selling Food Made At Home And Created Over A Thousand Local Businesses

There is a lesson to be learned here.  But I doubt the Leftists in CA will ever learn it.
More home bakers have followed. In Los Angeles County, there are almost 270 cottage food businesses. Statewide, over 1,200 homemade food businesses have been approved.

Under the California Homemade Food Act, local governments cannot ban cottage food businesses based in private homes. Instead, home-based entrepreneurs can sell their goods after passing a “food processor course” (which can be done online), properly labeling their goods and practicing common-sense sanitation when cooking and baking. Those who want to start their own cottage food business legally need only register or obtain a permit, as either a Class A or Class B operation.


GOP pushes California drought bill Democrats call irresponsible

Is it really irresponsible to do something about the situation?  Not in the least.
Opponents say the Republican efforts would undermine endangered species, threaten crucial habitats and wreck delicate compromises reached in the past, all while steering more Northern California water to San Joaquin Valley farms.

“The Republicans continue to play politics with this tragic drought rather than bringing us all together to address this problem,” said Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer.
And we know the solutions that the Dems are famous for.  Such as shutting down the farming in the Valley and throwing tens of thousands of farm workers out of work.  Creating massive unemployment in the area.

And solutions to provide water to CA areas via desalination just keep falling on deaf ears.  And the Dems solution?

Well, that's easy: give less water to the people.  It's always their go-to solution.  Provide less.

California regulator seeks to shut down ‘learn to code’ bootcamps

Oh yeah!  Regulators will SO MUCH improve the education system of these boot camps!

Anthony Phillips, cofounder of Hack Reactor, said the founders of these bootcamps are not averse to oversight and regulation in principle. ”I would like to be part of a group that creates those standards,” he said in an interview at the Hack Reactor offices in downtown San Francisco. “However, what that looks like and what makes sense for our schools is not necessarily going to fit in the current regulations.”



Monday, January 27, 2014

California's 'wall of debt' is only a slice of its liability problem

Wow.  That's a lot of money.
On the issue of retiree health care, the state hasn't set aside money for future expenses, instead opting to directly pay the costs as they arise. But if the state started saving now for the future cost of coverage that's been promised to state workers in retirement, that would trigger accounting changes. As a result, the state could reduce its long-term liabilities by $20 billion almost immediately, said Ryan Miller, a senior analyst in the state's Legislative Analyst's Office.

While teachers' pensions and retiree health care have gotten the most attention, they're not the only liabilities.

Almost $65 billion is needed to pay for deferred maintenance of state roadways, bridges and other infrastructure.

Nearly $9 billion is owed to the federal government for unemployment benefits that have been borrowed over the years.

The University of California pension and retiree health care plans are $25 billion underfunded.   

The graphic is from the article, too.

California hens are flapping their wings over this act in Congress

The LA Times tries to be cute.  What gets me is that journalists are some of the poorest paid people.  Surely, they can't think raising costs on themselves is a good thing.


Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), who represents the top egg-producing state, had persuaded the Republican-controlled House to include in its farm bill a measure to prohibit a state from interfering with another state’s production of agricultural products. He contended the California law was infringing on Congress’ power to regulate interstate commerce by imposing conditions on farmers who want to sell eggs in the nation’s most populous state.

King could not immediately be reached for comment.

But the measure did not make it into the proposed House-Senate farm bill agreement, according to three sources. Details of the bill are expected to be made available later today. The eagerly awaited bill could come before Congress this week.
So, let the games begin.

Which is more environmentally friendly: paper or plastic?

What a big fat DUH.
Before you brown bag it, consider these environmental disadvantages of paper: Causes pollution: Paper production emits air pollution, specifically 70 percent more pollution than the production of plastic bags [source: Thompson]. According to certain studies, manufacturing paper emits 80 percent more greenhouse gases [source: Lilienfield]. And, consider that making paper uses trees that, instead, could be absorbing carbon dioxide. The paper bag making process also results in 50 times more water pollutants than making plastic bags [source: Thompson].

Consumes energy: Even though petroleum goes into making plastic, it turns out that making a paper bag consumes four times as much energy as making a plastic bag, meaning making paper consumes a good deal of fuel [source: reusablebags.com].

Consumes water: The production of paper bags uses three times the amount of water it takes to make plastic bags [source: Lilienfield].

Inefficient recycling: The process of recycling paper can be inefficient -- often consuming more fuel than it would take to make a new bag [source: Milstein]. In addition, it takes about 91 percent more energy to recycle a pound of paper than a pound of plastic [source: reusablebags.com].
Produces waste: According to some measures, paper bags generate 80 percent more solid waste [source: Lilienfield].

Biodegrading difficulties: Surprisingly, the EPA has stated that in landfills, paper doesn't degrade all that much faster than plastics [source: Lilienfield].

I'm sorry, but if you weight the advantages/disadvantages, paper LOSES big time.  I don't think there is any contest.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Covered California: If this is a success story ...

So far the net effect of Obamacare has been negative.


So the state’s version of Obamacare has reduced the number of Californians with health insurance while doing a terrible job with the single community that was most in need of health coverage and assistance in navigating the bureaucracy to obtain it. The program also appears likely to be far more costly to taxpayers than previously estimated.

If this is an Affordable Care Act success story, that’s a profound comment on how badly the rollout is going elsewhere around the nation.

The Best State in America Is…?

Well, it ain't CA.

Since South Dakota and Tennessee appear in the top 5 of all measures, I’m guessing that means they are the best states (and it’s presumably no coincidence that they don’t have broad-based income taxes).




Thursday, January 23, 2014

Desal can mitigate California’s water woes

Desalination in CA is fought against by environmentalists tooth and nail.  Articles I've read constantly criticize it and always brings up the gazillion sea critters that are sucked into the units each year.

But this article talks about the areas of the USA where it's been successful. Places such as, would you like to guess? TEXAS!!


Contrast that with Texas, which has less than half the coastline of California, but boasts nearly 100 desalination facilities, producing 138 million gallons of water per day fit for the Lone Star State’s homes and industries.

The reason Texas has found it much easier than drought-ridden California to bring desalination plants online is that environmental groups are less extreme in Texas than they are here in the Golden State.

Indeed, the Sierra Club’s Lone Star Chapter published a report this past November that recognizes the promise desalination represents. It “offers the potential,” said Ken Kramer, the chapter’s Water Resources Chair, “for taking pressure off freshwater resources that are vital to environment.”

Meanwhile, here in California, environmental groups are dead set against desal.

SMITH & WESSON TO END MOST CA SALES DUE TO MICROSTAMPING REGULATION

Yes, CA will make sure that the ONLY people who have firearms are the CRIMINALS.

Smith & Wesson president and CEO James Debney said his company "will continue to work with the NRA and the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) to oppose this poorly conceived law which mandates the unproven and unreliable concept of microstamping and makes it impossible for Californians to have access to the best products with the latest innovations."


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

California court upholds mother's right to spank daughter

It's small rays of light like this that makes me ting it's still not too late for CA.


Gonzalez argued at trial that no consideration was given to her parental right to impose reasonable discipline on her child, who was slacking off in school.

Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Mark H. Pierce agreed with Gonzalez, saying the Legislature has recognized reasonable corporal punishment as a legitimate disciplinary measure.

Monday, January 20, 2014

U-Haul Index for January....uh...Late Edition

Sorry.  But I have just finally settled into a routine here in Seoul.
Anyway, here is the "Late Edition" of the Uhaul Index.  I think things are quiet right now due to the time of year.  I expect things to heat up in May/June.

For late January:

San Francisco ==> San Antonio, TX $1,395
San Antonio ==> San Franscisco, CA $ 821

For Fresno ==> San Antonio, TX  $1,728
San Antonio ==> Fresno, CA $845

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Chefs hate new law requiring them to wear gloves: 'It's terrible'

From the LA Times:
"The band-aid of a blanket glove regulation is potentially dangerous," says Neal Fraser, chef-owner of BLD restaurant and Fritzi Dog. "People get into the tendency to not wash their hands. And environmentally it's very unfriendly. It's funny that at the same time L.A. institutes a plastic bag ban, there's this."
This is a really good point.  The thousands and thousands of restaurants will generate an untold number of plastic wastes.  And many communities banned plastic grocery bags to curb the waste.

Additionally, since you aren't required to wear the gloves during all steps of food preparation, there is a good chance the workers will forget to wash their hands in the process.  The end result is that this law may do nothing to curb food borne illnesses.

But…it gets worse.  Reason.com covers the law in more detail and it's just horrifying.

If it appears to you that the exception pretty much swallows the rule, then you're absolutely right. How many bartenders are zesting lemons for custom cocktails destined for "preschool age children" at, say, a kidney dialysis center, right?

So if the law isn't worth the paper it's printed on, then why are chefs and bartenders up in arms? It's the confusion it causes. And the paperwork required to avoid it.

In order to qualify for a "highly susceptible population" exemption, the law states that restaurants and bars must "obtain prior approval from the regulatory authority;" must maintain "[w]ritten procedures" on site "that include a list of the specific ready-to-eat foods that are touched by bare hands," and must present "diagrams and other information[.]" And that's not even the half of it. (The multi-step compliance language runs more than 400 words.)

And then there's the fact that "it's not clear how the Los Angeles County health department will enforce the new regulations or how it would allot exemptions," reports theLos Angeles Times.

"In pursuit of the mirage of perfect safety, this rule sacrifices craft, proportion and common sense," says Olson. "Even though laws like this often go ignored in practice, they open up every ungloved bartender and sushi chef to selective enforcement or an inspector's shakedown."

This…is a nightmare.

HIGH-SPEED RAIL LINKING TEXAS AND MEXICO PROPOSED TO INCREASE TOURISM, BUSINESS

More rail news than you can shake a stick at.


Spearheading the measure is Representative Henry Cuellar (D-TX), who predicts that it will pump more tourism dollars into San Antonio, help Monterey with their small businesses, and will revolutionize trade and travel. “People from those two large cities, San Antonio and Monterey, can travel in a fast way and in a safe way,” the Democrat from San Antonio insists.

Cuellar is hoping the rail is operating within the next six to eight years “if everything falls into place.” The already swelling of business development in Monterey has prompted some to refer to the city as "Sonterrey." Cuellar affirms that "You can see on the northwest side a lot of people who have opened up businesses from Monterrey.”

Dallas/Fort Worth to Houston in 90 minutes

Well…we can dream….

Dallas Morning News: Need for Speed

Terrific article from the Dallas Morning News about the possible development of high speed rail the USA.  Lots of pictures and graphs.



Monday, January 13, 2014

Vaping hysteria California assemblyman wants to ban online e-cigarette sales

I just can't believe what control freaks there are in CA.  This is really out of hand.  What is it the CA G-men will let CA'ians do for fun??

Meanwhile, the new tobacco is marijuana. No one is placing excessive taxes or declaring war on ingesting unfiltered marijuana smoke along with pharmaceutical grade levels of THC.

Still having trouble adjusting to the time zone even after a month.  Our office location moved and I have to find a place with Wi-Fi that serves pastries.   I don't really like bagels and cream cheese, but right now, that's all I can find.  Can't wait to settle into a routine.

I sure could go for a Kolache.




Wednesday, January 8, 2014

CA’s top court rules illegal alien can join bar

I'm finally settling in in Seoul.  It's been pretty rough not having internet.  But I finally have some of the fastest internet in the world at my fingertips.

Anyway, what CA is doing is making me question what makes a citizen of the USA any different from a non-citizen.  I'm waiting on CA to decide anyone can vote regardless of their status.

From the Washington Times:
Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye said state legislation signed last year by Gov. Jerry Brown removed the final barriers and Mr. Garcia can be licensed, even though he is not in the country legally.

“We conclude that the fact that an undocumented immigrant’s presence in this country violates federal statutes is not itself a sufficient or persuasive basis for denying undocumented immigrants, as a class, admission to the state bar,” the chief justice wrote.
So, they can join the bar, and what else?  Own a business? They can drive a car. They don't get arrested now, in CA.