Monday, June 30, 2014

Oyster farm owners eye options after ruling

This case reveals all that is wrong with the Environmental Movement, especially, in CA.  They don't care about people.  People are just in the way.  Even when they are at balance with nature.
The case began in 2007 when the Department of Interior made it clear it would not renew the oyster farm's 40-year lease when it expired in 2012. the agency cited a 1976 Congressional decision to return the waters of Drakes Estero to wilderness status.

The department also cited research critical of the operation's effects on harbor seals, which use the estuary to reproduce.

Scrutiny of the research, however, unearthed errors and omissions that critics say showed park officials had an agenda to get rid of the oyster farm.

Lunny bought the oyster company in 2004, figuring he and his lawyers could negotiate a long-term lease extension.

Lunny, whose family has owned a cattle ranch overlooking the estuary since 1947, said his case is important to a dozen other families with cattle ranches within the national park who have not had their government leases renewed.
Oh, well, there's your problem.  Evil Cattle Ranchers!

Dan Walters: California courts sought stability, found instability

Yeah. I've discussed this before.  Underfunded.  Undermanned.  People are turning to the private sector for judicial assistance.  Which, apparently, is faster.

What seemed like a good idea at the time, however, has become a classic example of how political decisions often carry unintended consequences.

The takeover created a very large state agency that must compete politically with schools, colleges, prisons, health services and myriad other claimants on the state’s always-limited revenues. And the judicial branch has been losing that zero-sum game.

Between 2008 and 2012, court financing was whacked by more than $700 million. Dozens of courtrooms were shuttered due to a lack of funds, even though courts dipped into construction funds, spent down their reserves, furloughed or laid off employees, and closed their doors on certain days of the week.

One local court even staged a garage sale to raise money and keep its judges and employees on the job.

However, as a surge of revenues drives overall state spending to record levels, the court system’s financial woes have continued. They are receiving just a fraction of the new funds that George’s successor, Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye, says are needed to prevent further cutbacks.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

California lawmaker heads to Texas to lure jobs

Wow!  What a turn of the tables.  It'll be interesting to see how successful he is.
A California state lawmaker is heading to Texas to poach jobs.

Sen. Ted Gaines plans to visit the state Capitol in Austin on Monday and meet with businesses to promote California's business climate.

The Republican from Roseville is taking a page out of Gov. Rick Perry's playbook. The Texas governor recently visited Sacramento and test drove a Tesla electric car.

The New Majority

I picked up this info from Breitbart.  Speaking of Breitbart, they have a Breitbart Texas blog in addition to one that focuses on California.  They discovered, like I did, that the differences are so start, they are constantly worth highlighting.

I'm not sure what the New Majority will accomplish that other conservative organizations in place can't do.  But, hey, good luck!

S.F. loses another HQ as Union Bank's parent moves to New York

This happened about a month ago.
San Francisco often comes up short when major companies decide where to locate their headquarters and it's happened again: Union Bank's parent is moving its headquarters to New York from San Francisco as it pursues its national banking ambitions.

The bank's holding company joins a long list of companies that once called San Francisco home, including Bank of America, (NYSE: BAC) Transamerica, Chevron (NYSE: CVX) and Visa. (NYSE: V)


Dem lawmakers worry California’s cap-and-trade expansion will drive up gas prices

Amazing.  My jaw just clanged on the floor.  Dems actually CARING about the poor!
"Fuel prices for consumers are going to be driven up once fuel is covered under cap-and-trade at the start of next year, weakening the economy just as California is recovering from the last recession, and hurting the most vulnerable members of our communities who must commute to work and drive long distances for necessary services like medical care," they wrote.

The letter signals a break in the Democratic ranks over California's robust cap-and-trade program -- something Democrats at the national level have been unable to push through Congress.

California already has the highest average gas prices -- topping out at over $4 per gallon -- in the continental United States. The prospect of that price rising higher still has lawmakers of both parties concerned it could stunt economic growth at a fragile time.
Hey!  Soak the rich!

Environmentalists Call U.S. Workers ‘Collateral Damage’

Like I've been saying:  THEY DON'T CARE.

Mr. Becker wants more government programs to help the “disrupted” families, as though yet another government job training program will solve the problem that these workers’ lives have been turned upside down. Perhaps this is what the left means by “environmental justice.”

The “let them eat cake” attitude may strike readers as unbelievably offensive and cavalier. Imagine the outcry if a Republican referred to middle class job losers as acceptable “collateral damage.” The story would be on the front page of every newspaper in the country and if Mr. Becker were the head of an industry group he would almost surely be facing intense pressure to resign.
They're doing the Lord's work, dontcha know.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Motley Fool: Angry About Wind Power Subsidies? So Was Texas

This is a pretty good and readable article on wind energy in TX.
Everything is bigger in Texas -- including wind energy. But bigger isn't always better, and the Lonestar state has felt its fair share of renewable energy growing pains. But like any cowboy worth his weight, the Texas is readjusting to come out ahead. Here's how.

Getting bigger When it comes to wind power, "deep in the heart of Texas" is exactly where generators want to be. The state has some of the strongest, most accessible wind in the nation, and it's quickly become wind power's home base.

Texas produced 36 million megawatt hours (MWh) of electricity from wind in 2013, more than any other state. Its closest competitor, Iowa, churned out a measly 15 million MWh in comparison. The reason for Texas' flurry of wind energy is three-fold.  

Below is a wind speed map of the USA.  What you should look at are the midwest...and CA.  And I think I find this pretty curious.  CA has a very poor showing for wind speeds.  Because of this, I predicted that CA'ians shouldn't expect to extract a lot of its energy from wind.  And that's probably why the big push for solar.



This is called an "80 meter map".  The description on the web sate says these are predicted annual wind speeds at 80 meters height.  But that still doesn't have a lot of meaning.  Are these average speeds Median speeds?  I would think that sustained speeds would be almost as important.


Friday, June 27, 2014

Forget Huy Fong; Houston has its own Sriracha company

Well, this is kind of cool.  Looks like there have been a local Texas producer of a Sriracha sauce.

Nguyen explained that each sauce can be used for specific foods. For the yellow sauce, Nguyen said it was good with noodles or steak, the green for seafood and the red a general Sriracha that can be used on anything.

When coming up with the recipes for the different sauces that Sang Sang makes, Nguyen only had one place to look.

"(My mom) always made these fresh Srirachas for us, and I wanted to run with the idea that lets us create a sauce line for my mom, and through a lot of trial and error we were able to successfully accomplish this now," Nguyen said. "So she's happy."

Nguyen's Sriracha sauce is expected to hit the shelves in September, and Nguyen says the price shouldn't be much different than his competitors, around $4 for a 10.5-ounce bottle.






Proposed Dallas-Houston rail line to get federal review

OK.  Slow but steady progress on the Dallas to Houston line. 

The Federal Railroad Administration published a document on its website Wednesday officially kicking off a highly anticipated environmental review of a proposed high-speed rail line between Dallas and Houston.

The document, called a Notice Of Intent To Prepare An Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), marks the start of a process that will involve public input on Texas Central High-Speed Railway’s ambitious endeavor, which aims to connect travelers between Dallas and Houston in 90 minutes or less. The company has said it plans to operate the country’s fastest and only profitable high-speed rail line without public subsidies. Company officials have been preparing for the federal review for more than a year and have quietly worked on the logistics of it with federal officials in advance, according to people involved in the discussions.
Well, you know, the impact statement was most assuredly started earlier.

California High-Speed Rail Project Takes a Step Forward (on Paper, at Least)

Well, I hope it gets built.  But at what cost?  Projects in CA have a way of spiraling out of control.

The Federal Railroad Administration says it has issued a Record of Decision for the 114-mile Fresno to Bakersfield section of California’s High-Speed Train System.

Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx called the decision “a major step forward, both for the State of California and for High Performance rail in the U.S.”

The FRA announcement Friday said the decision “clears the way to break ground on the project.” But federal funding for the project remains doubtful, as a Government Accountability Office report underscored last year.

“Obtaining $38.7 billion in federal funding over the construction period is one of the biggest challenges to completing this project,” the GAO said.

The GAO said the 2012 business plan for the project “relies on approximately $42 billion in federal funding for the project’s construction, which includes the $3.3 billion that has already been obligated. The remaining $38.7 billion in federal funds have not been identified in federal budgets or appropriations” but would amount to an average of more than $2.5 billion annually — more than the federal government’s average annual appropriations to Amtrak since 2008.

Venezuela blackout leaves commuters scrambling, silences president

The slide into oblivion contnues with Venezuela.  How much will the poor put with before they finally say they've had enough?
A blackout cut power to much of Venezuela on Friday, snarling traffic in the capital Caracas and other major cities as authorities scrambled to restore electricity after the outage, which twice interrupted a presidential broadcast.

Pedestrians streamed into the streets of Caracas as the blackout shuttered the underground metro trains and left frustrated drivers honking in the chaos without stoplights.

Government ministers in the late afternoon said they expected power would be restored shortly. It was the second nationwide major electricity outage in less than a year.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

UNDER ONE PARTY RULE: MS GOP AND DEMS CONSPIRE AGAINST TEA PARTY

I mean, this is about as obvious and plain as the nose on your face.  In MS we have tacit collusion between the Dems and Repubs to destroy the Tea Party.

Since there is no news that the S GOP has come out against the robo-call, I can only assume that they are ok with it, if not in collusion to put it out.

I think we call this a One Party State.

Which means we are in so much trouble.

I don't think this is the end of this type of collusion.

Update:  Yeah, looks like I'm on track.  Gateway Pundit is reporting a Dem Pr-Cochran group put out the flier.  Dems and Repubs are all in cahoots.

I don't think I'll vote One-Party.  I'm sick of the GOP.











Wednesday, June 25, 2014

6 states that want to steal California jobs

I just love how this writer opens his article:
With an economy that rivals some nations, it comes as no surprise California and its jobs spark envy in other states.
Oh yeah.  Right.  Envy.  How about PITY.  Because that's what I feel when I think of how CA makes businesses jump through massive numbers of hoops in order to set up shop there.

And when I read statements like the follow, I just shake my head.  They just don't get it.

"We're really a model throughout the country," Linscheid said. "Tech jobs have only been 25 percent of our growth. What we’ve done that’s been good is have an environment where investment occurs. Private equity, angel investors, investor funds, help to get these companies off the ground."
These guys just don't get it.  Or maybe they're stupid or insane. The main reason they can attract talent and money is because the infrastructure was put in place BEFORE they went completely ape crazy.

Does CA honestly think that, starting from scratch, they could establish Silicon Valley today?  I really, really doubt it.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Facility for undocumented kids opposed

Finally, the populace is rising against an unlawful federal government.  Even in  (gasp!) CA!

Nearby residents who oppose the Escondido center said they’re concerned it will hurt property values, increase crime and cause other problems.

But some also decried the idea of federal tax dollars being used for such purposes, especially in their city.

“We want our City Council and the Planning Commission to push back to the federal government and adhere to the laws,” said Kitty Demry, who lives about a one-third of a mile from the proposed facility. “We don’t want an organization housed in our community with a huge number of uncertainties.


VDH: Lawmakers Gone Wild

What did you expect?  A group of like-minded socialists working together for the betterment of mankind.  What a beautiful sight!
In sum, the now-dysfunctional California legislature grew out of a destructive political alliance between the state’s poor interior and its rich coastal corridor, while the once-robust middle class either fled or declined into irrelevance. The odd power-coupling will end only when coastal elites begin to suffer the consequences of their progressive utopianism, or when the border closes and Latinos become politically indistinguishable from other Americans tired of subsidizing the pipe dreams of the rich and a welfare state that institutionalizes poverty. In other words, California’s hope lies in a middle-class resurgence.
There will be no resurgence.  Once bitten, twice shy.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Captiol Alert: California backs constitutional amendment limiting campaign money

Oh yeah.  Right.  They really want us to believe that DEMOCRATS have the people's interests at heart?  Now that they own CA, we're to believe NOW they want "big money" out of politics?

puh-lease.

Seeking to reverse a tide of money inundating politics, the Democratic-controlled California Senate on Monday called for an amendment to the U.S. Constitution limiting corporate campaign activity.

"If the only voice heard is the one with the most money," said Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, "what's become of our democracy?"
Now they want to stop REPUBLICAN money from changing the Democrat's ownsership of CA.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

It is insane that California has a whooping cough epidemic in 2014

About 15 years ago, I had this great idea.  I wouldn't get a flu vaccination.  I would depend on everyone else to get one. That way I could have my cake and eat it, too.

Shortly after that, I was on my back with a fever. and chills.  I had the flu.

So when I read about people not vaccinating their kids, I shake my head.  I've ignored the problems in CA that I've read about concerning once dead diseases coming back.  But now whooping cough is now an epidemic.  It's so easy to see and understand where this was headed.

It doesn't take a CDC employee with a PhD to understand when you allow ( or ignore) unvaccinated people coming into the country (ie, illegal aliens) and mix them with Americans who are not vaccinated, that the end result is the spreading of diseases.


Joel Kotkin: One-party rule is no party in California

Great op-ed piece showing the state of politics in CA.

Let’s be frank. California’s democracy is fading, the result of one-party politics, a weak media culture and a sense among many that politicians in Sacramento (or city hall) will do whatever they please once in office. As under the old PRI in Mexico, a lack of competitive politics has also bred the kind of endemic corruption with which California, in recent decades, was not widely associated.

The case of state Sen. Leland Yee, the Bay Area crusading liberal now accused of being a wannabe gun-runner, was just the most extreme example. If Yee is convicted and sent to jail, he might be joined by two Senate colleagues, one convicted of voter fraud and the other of bribery. The scandals have damaged the Legislature’s approval ratings.

California Can't Mimic No Income Tax Texas Without Substantial Spending Reforms

So, if you get rid of CA income taxes and sales taxes, you'll automatically turn into TX? Really?  I don't think so.  There is an ideological difference between the two that is wider than the Grand Canyon.

The largest issue keeping California from adopting this simple economic equation is out-of-control government spending. One of the most significant drains on California’s collected revenue is the state’s pension program and unfunded pension liabilities. Just last week, the California state legislature approved full funding for the troubled California State Teachers Retirement System (CalSTRS) – which is currently only 67 percent funded – to the tune of over $5 billion dollars coming from school districts that get no offsetting money from the state. However, as noted in my newest book (An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of States), California already pays its teachers almost 50 percent more than Texas, despite employing 40 percent fewer teachers per 10,000 people than the Lone Star State, and despite the fact that California students rank fifth from the bottom in education testing scores.

Dan Walters: California falling behind in civic and economic participation

CA'ians are not voting and they're not working.
The erosion of voter turnout parallels the decades-long decline in “labor force participation,” the percentage of adults who are either working or seeking work.

California’s rate is now down to 62.5 percent, the lowest since 1978.

Just as low voter turnout distorts our politics, low labor force participation skews our economy, or at least our perceptions of the economy.

The unemployment rate, widely seen as an economic barometer, is the percentage of those in the labor force who are jobless, but if the labor force is declining vis-à-vis the adult population, it makes the unemployment rate look better than it actually is.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

O'BAMA EPIC FAIL: Northern Gateway pipeline in Canada approved

Yep!  O'Bama's working tirelessly to raise employment in the USA.  He's working so hard to...

He's working hard to smash the citizens into poverty.  How incredibly disgusting.  Instead of a pipeline running from Canada to the Gulf Coast (XL Pipeline), it's running to the Canadian west coast to seel their oil to someone else.

"The prime minister endorsed this pipeline publicly three years ago," Mr Mulcair said ."No matter what evidence, how many people speak out, how many people stand up against him, he keeps pushing this project."

Mr Harper has said diversifying Canada's oil sands production is essential, especially after President Barack Obama has delayed a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline, which would bring crude to the Gulf of Mexico.
It's ALL O'BAMA'S FAULT.  The Poverty President.


California lawmakers consider expanding teacher tenure despite court ruling

Since teacher tenure is working out so well and boosting the level of education...NOT!!
Her bill, which passed the Assembly and was set for a vote Wednesday in the Senate's education committee, would require small school districts to grant tenure to credentialed teachers after three years on the job. Districts with fewer than 250 students are not currently required to grant tenure. It also would require all districts to grant tenure to vocational education teachers, nurses, psychologists and counselors after three years.

Republican Senate leader Bob Huff said the bill "represents a step backwards from the court ruling," which declared the state's practice of offering tenure to teachers in large district's lifetime jobs after two years to be unconstitutional.

The ruling, a major setback for teacher unions that could also have national implications, came in response to a lawsuit complaining that tenure and other protections hurt poor and minority students by effectively funneling incompetent teachers to schools in disadvantaged areas at disproportional rates.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

NEW: Sick leave bill could kill jobs, cut hours

The CA government just doesn't know when to stop hurting employees.
Assembly Bill 1522, which passed the Assembly and is making its way through the state Senate, would require businesses to provide paid sick leave for employees who work seven or more days in a year. Sick time would accrue at rate of one hour for every 30 hours worked.

Layoffs, cutbacks

Mandated sick leave legislation in San Francisco, Seattle and Connecticut has resulted in about one in seven businesses paying for the new benefit by laying off workers or reducing their hours.

15 percent of surveyed San Francisco employees said their hours had been reduced or they had been laid off after the city’s sick leave mandate was implemented, according to a 2011 study for the Institute for Women’s Policy Research; 14 percent received fewer bonuses or had other benefits cut. More than one in five reported increased work demands. Low-wage workers were hardest hit.
Yet again, IDEOLOGY trumps REALITY.

I just don't understand it.  I shake my head everytime I read what CA'ians have to put up with.  Why do they think Democrat Leftists are their answer?

Monday, June 16, 2014

Group sues to halt California refinery revamp

It's not that the environmentalists care about clean air.  They just want you to pay more for gas, make gasoline scarce and finally drive you OUT of CA.  They don't care whether you live or die or struggle in poverty.

The suit alleges that BAAQMD engaged in "flagrant disregard" of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) when it initially granted and subsequently renewed an air permit to Chevron for construction of the Richmond project before a final environmental impact report (EIR) was made available for a public review and commentary period, according to CBE's filing in San Francisco Superior Court.

While the city of Richmond released a long-awaited revised draft EIR for the refinery modernization earlier this year showing substantive differences from a previous 2008 EIR for the project (OGJ Online, Mar. 19, 2014), BAAQMD has yet to consider these differences or, more importantly, consider a final EIR as required by CEQA, the petition said.

CBE also contends that the Richmond modernization project—which would increase greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 1 million tonnes/year—has yet to be reviewed under the heightened scrutiny of federal laws governing air permitting since BAAQMD last renewed the permit in 2012 (OGJ Online, July 3, 2012).

In addition to its request that the air permit be invalidated, CBE also has asked the court to direct BAAQMD to refrain from granting Chevron any further approvals to advance the Richmond modernization project until the company has fully complied with all applicable requirements under both state and federal law.

I think Chevron ought to just shut the plant down and tell CA to go screw themselves.

California Student Speaks Openly About His Christian Faith in Graduation Speech Defying School's Order

Kids like this will change the world and live by his own rules - on in his case, God's rules, not man's.  I wish him the best.
"In life, you will be told, 'No,'" added Hamby, who has been a mock-trial star, s cross-country runner and U.S. Senate page. "In life you will be told to do things that you have no desire to do. In life, you will be asked to do things that violate your conscience and desire to do what is right."

As the speech caused whispering among the crowd, Hamby responded by saying, "No man or woman has ever truly succeeded or been fulfilled on the account of living for others and not standing on what they knew in their heart was right or good."

Sunday, June 15, 2014

U-Haul Index for June 2014

Running late on this.  Numbers haven't changed.  Generally, the mass transfer is OUT of CA and IN to TX.


San Francisco ==> San Antonio   $1395
San Antonio ==> San Francisco   $616

Fresno ==> San Antonio    $1536
San Antonio ==> Fresno    $845

But when natural gas and oil prices should crater, you might see all of this change.


IT experts call BS on IRS claim to have lost Lerner emails

I agree.  If the emails are really lost, then there was a CONSPIRACY to remove all traces of the emails.   And all those involved should be in JAIL.

Jason Howerton of The Blaze interviewed veteran IT expert Norman Cillo, “an Army veteran who worked in intelligence and a former program manager at Microsoft,” who laid out six reasons, complete with charts, why he believes Congress is being lied to. Among them:

I believe the government uses Microsoft Exchange for their email servers. They have built-in exchange mail database redundancy. So, unless they did not follow Microsofts recommendations they are telling a falsehood. (snip)

Every IT organization that I know of has hotswappable disk drives. Every server built since 2000 has them. Meaning that if a single disk goes bad it’s easy to replace. (snip)

ALL Servers use some form of RAID technology. The only way that data can be totally lost (Meaning difficult to bring back) is if more than a single disk goes before the first bad disk is replaced….

He notes “All email servers in a professional organization use TAPE backup. Meaning if all the above fails, you can restore the server using the TAPE backups.”

And then there is the case of the local hard drive that failed.  So what?  Unless it took a direct hit from lightning, the data is very much extractable.  The easiest way is to remove the disk platters and just put them into another hard drive that is still functioning.  My brother did that!  That's how easy it is!

Otherwise, you bring in the experts and they can work their magic to extract data from a dead hard drive.  And it's not that expensive.  A while back I was presented a price of $400 to extract the data fro a dead hard drive.  But....I had back ups so this wasn't necessary.

The company I'm working for right now uses the Domino Server with Lotus Notes and I can NOT store my archive locally.  Microsoft Outlook allows you to do this.



Thursday, June 12, 2014

The President with the "Sidam Touch"

There is a Tweeter (?  Is that right?  I don't know what the actual term would be) whose handle is @TheSidamTouch.

She has one follower.  There are no tweets except for her first one which reads:
I now feel the need to keep an updated list of all the ridiculous misfortunes that happen on a daily basis.
The definition of The Sidam Touch is the exact opposite of The Midas Touch.  Everything one touches, turns not to gold, but withers and disintegrates and falls to dust.

Yes, a President Obama is a great example of The Sidam Touch in action.  The stunning disintegration of the situation in Iraq is only the latest example of our President's lack of President-level self-equipt tools and Character to be able to "see past his nose" and understand the interacvtivity of all of the playing pieces.

Yes, as the saying goes, while O'bama is playing checkers, everyone else in the world is playing chess. O'Bama keeps calling "funsies!  funsies!" but the Child President doesn't realize that the world is a cold, hard place for a child in which to be playing.

What a sad, sad pathetic spectacle he is.  And if this were the only calamity he could be blamed for causing maybe he could be forgiven to a certain extent.  But the sad truth is this president, of all the presidents throughout history, has had such a stunning list of not just what we would call failures but downright disasters.

O'Bama, is a democrat - you know who those are, right?  Those are supposed to be the ones for "the little guy"; the ones who stand as the vanguard to take the arrows for the "worker" to help lift the poor and unfortunate to a higher plane.

I have never ever seen a president work so hard to PREVENT people from working.  The XL Pipeline is STILL being held up.  The EPA, under the directions of an uncaring president, is shutting down the ENTIRE COAL INDUSTRY.

He's also using the EPA to burden industries with stupid and eye rolling regulations limiting, what? CO2 emissions which almost NO SIZABLE MANUFACTURING FACILITY IS CAPABLE OF LIMITING.  By doing this, he has made it IMPOSSIBLE for meangingful employment to take hold.

When the people want JOBS JOBS JOBS, his Sidam Touch brings us POVERTY POVERTY POVERTY.

Honestly, I really don't want to go through all of this.  Let me just list the stunning disasters the Man with the Sidam Touch has wrought:

Fingers on the hand of the Man with the Sidam Touch:

1. Afghanistan
2. Iraq
3. Obamacare
4. XL Pipeline
5. Solyndra
6. IRS Scandal
7. VA Scandal
8. NSA Scandal
9. Clive Bundy land grab
10. Benghazi

The only good news out of all of this is that for sure, when his administration is over, he will be so unloved, so burdened with failure after failure after failure that NO ONE, not even the Democrats, will have anything to do with him.

And then, we can only hope he will drift into obscurity as Jimmy Carter did.

And I say, good riddance.



Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Why Ameriflight is moving its HQ, and jobs, to D/FW Airport from California

From bizjournals.com:

The company is relocating its headquarters and maintenance department to D/FW Airport from Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, Calif.

Gov. Rick Perry, who has made a concerted effort to relocate California companies to Texas, took to Twitter to express his thoughts on the relocation.

"Another business knows the sky’s the limit in Texas!" Perry Tweeted.

The central location was one of the biggest drivers as was the business-friendly reputation that Texas has nationwide. “Dallas was one of the few finalists,” Lotter said. “It’s everything that Dallas has going for it. The driver was growth and we have been in the same facility for 46 years. We were out of space.”

Sony Pictures Imageworks moving headquarters to Vancouver

Wow.  Is Canada the new Land of Opportunity?
“Vancouver has developed into a world-class centre for visual effects and animation production,” said Randy Lake, executive vice president and general manager at Sony Pictures Digital Productions, in a statement issued on Friday morning.

“It offers an attractive lifestyle for artists in a robust business climate. Expanding our headquarters in Vancouver will allow us to deliver visual effects of the highest calibre and value to our clients.”

...

Journalist David Cohen, who covers the visual effects — commonly abbreviated to VFX — industry for Variety Magazine in Los Angeles, says the move makes Vancouver the VFX capital of North America.

"The whole visual effects industry is basically built with a global migratory workforce of the best artists from around the world," says Cohen.

"So they might be coming from Canada, but they might also be coming from India, China, France, you know, the U.S.A., Germany — wherever there are skilled visual effects artists. So they hire from a global workforce."


As Oil By Rail Set To Skyrocket In California, State Behind On Spill Response Capabilities

The article doesn't quite have it right.  CA is behind on PIPELINE infrastructure, which causes CA to have to import oil by rail, which causes the rise in rail wrecks and oil spills, which CA doesn't have the expanded capabilities because they didn't do the right thing and put in ore oil pipelines.  Whew!

Imports of crude oil from North Dakota and Canada into California are expected to rise from just 1 percent of total oil imports in 2013 to 25 percent by 2016, according to state energy officials. Much of that oil would travel through densely populated parts of the state en route to coastal refineries.

The increase has raised concerns about the state's ability to respond to derailments. Crude oil trains have been involved in numerous accidents in the past year including the fiery explosion that killed 47 people in Lac-Megantic, Quebec last July.

The multi-agency report from Governor Jerry Brown's administration outlined a dozen recommendations, which include better training and real-time shipment information for emergency responders.
And no recommendations for more pipeline.  Why am I not surprised?

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Inclusive Capitalism: The End Of Man

From the Politico:
It is not just George Soros, the hedge-fund billionaire, who cheerfully describes himself as a class traitor and has been worrying about the shortcomings of what he calls free-market fundamentalism for decades, anymore. Among the plutocrats, this once-radical perspective is going mainstream.

You could see that in London in late May, at a conference on “Inclusive Capitalism.” In the graceful, gilded rooms of the Guildhall, the historic seat of the City, one of the world’s two centers of finance, international investors controlling $30 trillion worth of asset–one third of the global total—gathered to discuss, as Paul Polman, the CEO of Unilever, put it, “the capitalist threat to capitalism.”

Capitalism, Polman and Lynn Forester de Rothschild, the conference’s organizer, wrote in an introductory essay, “has often proved dysfunctional in important ways. It often encourages shortsightedness, contributes to wide disparities between the rich and the poor, and tolerates the reckless treatment of environmental capital. If these costs cannot be controlled, support for capitalism may disappear.”

What fools.  They will reap their own demise and don't even know it. All you have to do is look at countries like South Korea and China and see what Capitalism has done to right the wrongs of keeping people down and see the Tsunami of Capitalism that has lifted boats.

What shear, utter nonsense that people so smart can be so stupid. It goes to show that you can be smart and foolish all at the same time. With the huge successes of Capitalism, it's easy to see that we don't need less of it. We need more it!! "Income Inequality" is brought about by government policy, not IN SPITE OF IT.

I am afraid that even after all of the successes, we are staring at the beginnings of the end of Capitalism, free thought, and unleashed imagination and entering a dark, oppressive greyness that means everyone will be equal - equally destitute. We should mark this moment as the End of Man.

Inclusive Capitalism is yet another tactic of Leftists (Marxists) to overthrow Capitalism.  But this one looks to be sticking.

The use of the quote from Jefferson is nauseating. The early Americans REJECTED SOCIALISM. The Pilgrims' experiment with it failed miserably. They realized that people needed to take ownership and must be the sole entity responsible for their well-being. I am OFFENDED by the use of Jefferson's words. If he were alive, Jefferson would be too!!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Ohio One Step Closer To Ending In-State Renewable Energy Mandate

OH is one of those states I can;t ever figure out which way it will go.  Sort of like VA.  But this is good news.

Legislation that would unplug Ohio's in-state renewable energy mandate and require a re-evaluation of the entire law is headed to Gov. John Kasich.

And it appears that Gov. Kasich plans to sign the bill.

The issue could be significant for the region because Michigan also has an in-state renewable energy mandate that outlaws it from being able to buy renewable energy from surrounding states, which could lower costs for Michigan taxpayers.

Renewable energy in Ohio and Michigan mostly refers to electricity produced by wind turbines. Ending Ohio's in-state mandate would allow the state's utilities to shop for cheaper wind-produced energy from states that produce more wind, such as Minnesota and Iowa. That, in turn, would force wind energy producers in Ohio to compete or find other markets.
Better news would have been to get rid of renewable fuels mandates altogether.  What a waste.

Part 2: CA utilities outfoxing Cap and Trade law

Hard to believe you can actually go to JAIL because you bought the wrong electricity.  A utility company supplying electricity to your home should be a very straight forward thing. And yet we see mangled and onerous laws in place to make sure CA'ians may MORE.

Part II of Calwatchdog.orgs report:

The way “resource shuffling” works is a municipal or private electric utility terminates its contract for “dirty” coal power from a power plant in Arizona, Nevada or Utah to comply with California’s green laws. The utility then signs a contract with a natural gas or solar power plant, or both, to buy cleaner power. But the natural gas and the coal power plants just swap contracts and ship the cheap coal power to California and the cleaner gas power to other customers.

In many cases it is legal to do so if the transaction involved 1) is in compliance with SB1368 of 2006; 2) is in compliance with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; or 3) “safe harbor” rules are followed for the early divestiture of a power resource allowed under the state’s cap-and-trade law.

The reason that California utilities are trying to trick CARB is that they must keep power rates low for their customers. Stanford economist Frank Wolak explains:

“Resource shuffling is the same thing as serving the interests of your shareholders or your customers, and therein lies the big problem and the challenge in trying to prohibit it. It’s analogous to telling utilities not to do what is least-cost to comply with the regulation.”

Energy reporter Debra Kahn says that definitively proving resource shuffling is difficult and hard to answer.
So, now we see "electricity laundering" is equivalent to "money laundering" with drugs.

Is this what we've come to? Doesn't anyone see the problem like I do?


Sunday, June 8, 2014

Part 1 Study: Green power worst way to cut CO2

Calwatchdog.org goes through the numbers and CA is found wanting.
As Frank summarizes:

“The emission benefits of four of the five low-carbon alternatives per kilowatt-hour are roughly the same, about five cents per kilowatt-hour (see line 3). The benefits of wind and solar, minus their additional costs, are negative (line 5, columns a, b). The net benefits of the other three alternatives are positive and substantially higher (line 5, columns c, d, e). Gas combined cycle ranks number one in terms of net benefits while hydro and nuclear rank two and three.”

Here’s how Frank explains why wind and solar are losers:

“A wind or solar plant operates at full capacity only a fraction of the time, when the wind is blowing or the sun is shining. For example, a typical solar plant in the United States operates at only about 15 percent of full capacity and a wind plant only about 25 percent of full capacity, while a coal plant can operate 90 percent of full capacity on a year-round basis. Thus it takes six solar plants and almost four wind plants to produce the same amount of electricity as a single coal-fired plant.”

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Bilingual education idiocy in California

Linda Chavez agrees with me.
As Ron Unz, the man who managed to pass the 1998 California ballot initiative banning bilingual education, pointed out recently, white nationalists Richard Spencer and Jared Taylor both have endorsed bilingual education.

Spencer recently tweeted, “I oppose forcing Hispanic children to learn English,” which drew widespread approval from his followers. Their hope is that bilingual education will lead to the de-facto segregation of Latino kids.

But some nine out of 10 Latinos believe it is imperative for Latinos to learn English. And immigrants are especially eager for their children to learn the language that will enable them to build a better future for themselves.

Indeed, it was immigrant parents who pushed hardest for eliminating failing bilingual programs in California.

Craven politicians of both parties will do great harm if they return California to the bad old days when kids who desperately needed and wanted to learn English were stuck in classrooms where they were denied that opportunity.

Thankfully, the proposed repeal must still go before California voters. Let’s hope voters have more sense and compassion than their elected leaders.   


Friday, June 6, 2014

Berlin prepares to allow fracking

Flopping Aces posted the link.  You'll need a Financial Times account to read the article, unfortunately.

The operative word here is "prepares".  Which means that Germany won't see the fruits of their labor for several years.  Not only does Germany have to go through the legislative motions to approve the fracking, the natural gas industry will have to lay the infrastructure (pipelines) to transport the natural gas from the fields.  This won't be easy and will take time.

Add on top of that the propensity of the German government to regulate things to death.  You are looking at an environmental and regulatory burden much greater that what we have to deal with here in the USA.

This article also dovetails nicely with the American article I referenced in an earlier post.  The Germans are facing the prospect of a good portion of their chemical business moving to the USA due to the cheaper natural gas prices.  This is striking the Fear Of God in them.

The number for shale gas reserves is pretty amazing 2.3 trillion cubic meters. Wikipedia lists Germany 48th in the world for proven reserves for natural gas at about 175 billion cubic meters.  If this number is conservative (which I doubt) it would propel Germany into 11th or 12 place between Iraq and China.  So, for the Germans fracking is a really, really big deal.

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Fracking has been the subject of a fierce debate in Germany’s ruling coalition, with some politicians keen to reduce reliance on Russian energy imports, while others fear the impact of fracking chemicals on a densely populated country.

German manufacturers have been strong advocates of the new technology, which they believe has provided cheap shale gas energy to their US competitors while Germany grapples with a costly switch to subsidised renewables.

Details of the new regulations emerged in a letter from Sigmar Gabriel, German economy minister, to the head of the Bundestag’s budget committee. In the letter, Mr Gabriel wrote that permission to carry out fracking would be subject to approval from regional water authorities and that “further requirements for the fracking permit process are still being considered”.
Without a doubt, fracking is changing the geopolitical landscape.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

ARE REEDUCATION CAMPS OUR FUTURE??

A large number of you probably aren't aware  what these are.  We'll let Wikipedia explain:
Reeducation camp (Vietnamese: trại học tập cải tạo) is the official title given to the prison camps operated by the government of Vietnam following the end of the Vietnam War. In such "reeducation camps", the government imprisoned several hundred thousand former military officers and government workers from the former government of South Vietnam. Reeducation as it was implemented in Vietnam was seen as both a means of revenge and as a sophisticated technique of repression and indoctrination, which developed for several years in the North and was extended to the South following the 1975 Fall of Saigon. An estimated 1-2.5 million people were imprisoned with no formal charges or trials.  According to published academic studies in the United States and Europe, 165,000 people died in the Socialist Republic of Vietnam's re-education camps. Thousands were tortured or abused. Prisoners were incarcerated for as long as 17 years, with most terms ranging from three to 10 years.

The term 'reeducation camp' is also used to refer to prison camps operated by the People's Republic of China during the Cultural Revolution, or to the laogai and laojiao camps currently operated by the Chinese government. The theory underlying such camps is the Maoist theory of reforming counter-revolutionaries into socialist citizens by re-education through labor.
 Here is a first hand account of a person's experience:

HOUSTON: THE NEXT LA. WON'T SOLVE PENSION CRISIS, BUT ELIMINATES GENDER-BASED RESTROOMS.

How utterly utterly stupid.
It’s now legal for men to use women’s bathrooms, showers, and dressing facilities – and vice-versa – thanks to the passing of the Equal Rights Ordinance in Houston, TX last Wednesday night.

Mayor Parker, Houston’s first openly gay mayor, called it “most personally meaningful thing I will ever do as mayor.”

The ordinance’s stated goal is to eliminate discrimination in housing and employment for gays, transgenders – 14-characteristics in total – including race, ethnicity, age, religion and disability.

Opponents have 30 days to attain more than 17,000 petition signatures to appeal the decision.
So, instead of tackling the truly hard issues such as Houston City debt, they do this.
The political way to describe the numbers, presented by city budget chief Kelly Dowe, might be to say they present a challenge, or perhaps an opportunity. In plain English, they are bleak.

Beginning next summer with fiscal year 2016, Houston will face a projected $142 million gap between expected revenues and expenses in its general fund, which is fed chiefly by property and sales taxes and funds most basic city services. That exceeds the $137 million budget gap Houston had to close during the economic recession, when Mayor Annise Parker laid off 776 workers in making numerous cuts in 2011.

And the projected gap will widen in the years to follow. By fiscal year 2018, the budget deficit is expected to top out at a projected $205 million.

The calculations resulting in those projected deficits assume no raises for city workers or added investments in vehicles and technology that cannot be put off forever, said Councilman Stephen Costello, meaning the actual deficits could be higher.
And property taxes have been rising like crazy.  What the hell has Houston been doing with my money?

Oh.  Yeah.  The same problem LA and other cities have been struggling with:  PENSIONS.
Driving the problem are soaring pension payments and a spike over the next four years in the cost of servicing debt.

The single largest expense increasing in the proposed 2015 general fund budget is a 21 percent hike paid into the city's three pension funds, to $261 million. That's more than what is spent on libraries, parks, trash pickup and municipal courts combined.

And pension payments are only projected to increase. Next year, Dowe said, the city expects to cough up $50 million on top of its scheduled payment to the police pension thanks to a contractual trigger that requires the account to maintain a funding level of at least 80 percent.

In refinancing debt, Dowe added, past mayors put off principal payments for future leaders to pay, creating a debt bubble that now is coming due. General obligation debt payments will jump from $297 million this fiscal year to $355 million by fiscal 2018, before falling.
And we all know who will suffer, right?  THE TAX PAYERS.

Christian Baker Stands Firm

I'm glad he's standing firm.   And this article mentions something that I find especially appalling:

A Colorado bakery owned by a Christian family is refusing to comply with orders from the state of Colorado that they change their policies and attend mandatory “training sessions” after refusing to bake wedding cakes for same-sex couples.

Todd Starnes of Fox News is reporting that Jack Phillips, owner of the Masterpiece Cakeshop in Lakewood, Colorado, is being pressured by the state to undergo comprehensive training on the state’s anti-discrimination laws after losing a lawsuit brought by a same-sex couple who accused him of discrimination when he refused to bake a cake for their “wedding” reception.
REEDUCATION CAMPS.  That's what this is!  I find this absolutely DISGUSTING.

Why don't they just round up ALL CHRISTIANS and bus them off to these camps?

This.  Is. Evil.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The Problem of Lost Technology: When Proctor & Gamble forgot how to make Ivory Soap

Back in the mid-80s I became friends with a very brilliant mechanical engineer.  Lou Gibbons loved to work on cars.  He loved gadgets.  He programmed robots for GM plants in the northeast and was an expert at designing assembly systems to reduce costs.  The guy was great and he was never at a loss for words.  Until he was assigned to an Ivory Soap facility.

I had known him up to this time for about a year or so.  His career had had some interesting bumps in the road. He once taught at a local junior college in another state where one of his students engaged him on the future of robotics. The subject segued into employment and replacement of workers.

"It was just a normal conversation you have with a student.  Sure, workers would be replaced.  But other workers would be needed to maintain the robots, build the robots, design the environment.  The net loss would be negative, zero or only slightly positive."

I may be putting words in his mouth since the conversation was about 30 years now.  But the gist was that there was nothing remarkable about the conversation.

"Gary, I had no idea the student was really a reporter for the local newspaper."  He let the air out of his lungs during a long pause.  "The next day, the front page of the local paper top bold headline read: 

COLLEGE PROFESSOR WANTS TO REPLACE ALL WORKERS WITH ROBOTS

"My reputation and career were ruined.  I finally made the decision to leave the state and start a new life with my family."

About a year later Lou helped me rebuild the engine in my "sporty" 1981 Dodge Colt.  I think that was the last car you could see through the engine compartment all the way to the ground.

Lou was back briefly from a project in Cincinnati.  Fluor-Daniel had a long term contract with Procter & Gamble to assist in various plant and product upgrades.  We sat together during a break, both sipping on nice cold glasses of sweet ice tea (which in the South is only known as "ice tea")

"It ... was the oddest thing."  Lou looked perplexed, searching for the right words, his wide handle bar mustache seemed to follow his furrowed eyebrows in expressing bewilderment.  Lou, at a loss for words. It didn't seem possible.

"P&G forgot how to make their Ivory Soap."  He looked off into space.  Then he turned looking at me, finishing his sentence.  "And I had to show them how to make it all over again."

I'm not an expert on soap making, but most likely, you could divide the process into two parts: Soap formulation and soap bar forming.  Lou was involved in the latter.  It was the back end where they made the bars of soap that was the problem.

"All of their experienced engineers and operators had retired.  The new guys they hired were inexperienced.  Yeah, they were cheaper, but the bar production line was a disaster." If I recall what he said, it was a classic case of fixing something that wasn't broken.

"The young engineers just thought they knew better.  The whole line from extrusion, to cutting, to packaging was a mess.  Stacked bars of soap were falling all over the floor.  The operators weren't properly trained.  The engineers thought they could do a better design.  But it was a disaster."  Production was slowing.  Downtime had greatly increased.

Fluor-Daniel, our employer was called in to assist in re-redesigning the line.  Lou was sent to help troubleshoot.

"The automated system cut the bars right off of extrusion, stacked them, then transported them."  He explained that the stacked short bars had no stability and were always falling over.  They had to stop the production line frequently to retune the automation.

"I had to redesign the facility so that an intermediate cut was made such that the bars were very long.  These longer bars had better stability for transporting and never tumbled.  Then before packaging, the bars were automatically cut to length, then wrapped and packaged.

"It was after the re-engineering of the automation process and I started the operator training that it dawned on me: I had to teach P&G how to make soap!"


That conversation intrigued me to no end.  How do you lose the ability to make something you made for decades?  But here I was facing the reality that it could happen.  That it would happen again.

I never forgot that conversation and mulled it over for years. I extrapolated his experience to other areas, such as electronics production.  As more and more of our operations were sent to China and Japan (at the time Japan was considered a real threat), what did that mean to us here?

What it meant was that if we ever wanted to make a certain product in the USA again, it was not going to be easy.  And maybe even impossible.  All of that experience. All that knowledge.  All gone.

At the time I coined the phrase the Problem of Lost Technology.

And here we are.  The circle is complete.

Walmart, in trying to sell "Made in America", is finding Made in America left a long time ago.

Companies that make the leap have to grapple with a host of challenges, including a shallow pool of component suppliers, an inexperienced workforce, and other shortcomings that developed during the country's long industrial decline.

"A lot of the tribal knowledge and skill sets are gone because the humans who used to do that work have either retired or died," says H. Kim Kelley, the CEO of Hampton Products International, a privately held maker of locks, lighting and other household hardware. The Foothill Ranch, California-based company began selling products made in Asia to Walmart in the 1990s and is now supplying it with some U.S.-made products.

Trying to rebuild that manufacturing capability, while making products that meet Walmart's standards, can require companies to “start from scratch,” Kelley says.

Cindi Marsiglio, the Walmart vice president overseeing the U.S. sourcing push, says the retailer and its existing suppliers have 150 active reshoring projects in various stages of development. For all too many, she says, finding U.S.-made component parts has emerged as a vexing problem.
What really makes me mad is I saw this coming.  And if I saw it coming, others did, too; people in positions who could  do something about it.

And they did nothing.

And here we are.






Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Record Number of Film, TV Projects Apply for California Tax Credits

I think this is the very definition of Corporate Welfare.
“This year’s dramatic growth in the number of applications reaffirms that California is the preferred choice for projects of all types and sizes,” said California Film Commission Executive Director Amy Lemisch. “The industry wants to base productions in California, but incentives now drive those decisions.”

The program is far smaller and less lucrative than in competing states such as Georgia, Louisiana and New York. It attracted 67 applications in 2009, followed by 70 in 2010, 176 in 2011, 322 in 2012 and 380 last year.
I guess it never dawned on anyone that maybe they should just relax labor laws for EVERYONE.  Lower taxes for EVERYONE.




Special Report: How fracking helps America beat German industry

This is a big, big deal.  I told you all in 2011 that Natural Gas was THE NEXT BIG THING.
"It's not a question of whether other countries are competitive or not," Huntsman, brother of former U.S. presidential candidate Jon, said in an interview. "They're not."

Power isn’t the only reason the United States is becoming so attractive to manufacturers again. Average labor costs in China have more than doubled since 2007 to around $2 per hour, while they’ve risen less in the United States to around $18 per hour, with worker productivity far higher in the United States, according to U.S. government statistics. When you factor in the cost of shipping goods from Asia, it’s little wonder that America has re-emerged as one of the most competitive places to build stuff.

That’s a dramatic change from just a few years ago, when Germany was held up as a model of manufacturing prowess. As recently as 2011, politicians in Washington were openly discussing how to copy Germany's success.

"We need to be more like Germany," General Electric Chief Executive Jeffrey Immelt said in an interview that year with Reuters.

Now things are heading the other way. German Chancellor Angela Merkel's energy policies - designed to sharply boost the share of renewables in Germany’s energy mix, tackle climate change and cut Germany’s dependency on foreign gas and oil - are a rising source of concern for the country’s industry, particularly energy-intensive companies like Wacker.

According to Germany's Chamber of Commerce and Industry, half of the country's industrial companies believe their global competitiveness is threatened by Germany's energy policy, and a quarter of them are either shifting production abroad or considering doing so. The United States is among the top destinations.

Surprise! Leftist minimum wage policy backfires in Seattle suburb

This is only a surprise if you are a Leftist Socialist.  To the other Americans, who have plain Common Sense, it was so predictable.
Earlier this month, Seattle voted to raise its minimum wage gradually to $15 by the year 2020. Unlike the SeaTac wage hike, Seattle’s hike will apply to all businesses.

But 15 minutes south near the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, employees are already seeing the negative effects of such a hike. A February report from the Seattle Times revealed:

At the Clarion Hotel off International Boulevard, a sit-down restaurant has been shuttered, though it might soon be replaced by a less-labor-intensive cafe…

Other businesses have adjusted in ways that run the gamut from putting more work in the hands of managers, to instituting a small “living-wage surcharge” for a daily parking space near the airport.

That’s not all. According to Assunta Ng, publisher of the Northwest Asian Weekly, some employees are feeling the pinch as employers cut benefits. She recalls a conversation she had with two hotel employees who have been affected by the wage hike:

“Are you happy with the $15 wage?” I asked the full-time cleaning lady.

“It sounds good, but it’s not good,” the woman said.

“Why?” I asked.

“I lost my 401k, health insurance, paid holiday, and vacation,” she responded. “No more free food,” she added.

The hotel used to feed her. Now, she has to bring her own food. Also, no overtime, she said. She used to work extra hours and received overtime pay.

What else? I asked.

“I have to pay for parking,” she said.

I then asked the part-time waitress, who was part of the catering staff.

“Yes, I’ve got $15 an hour, but all my tips are now much less,” she said. Before the new wage law was implemented, her hourly wage was $7. But her tips added to more than $15 an hour. Yes, she used to receive free food and parking. Now, she has to bring her own food and pay for parking.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Bill calls for breast pumping rooms at 10 major airports in California

Well, so much for the breaths of sanity.  I guess they were just flukes.
The bill, proposed by Assemblywoman Bonnie Lowenthal (D-Long Beach), requires that existing terminals offer rooms with an electrical outlet for the pump and a chair, while new terminals must include rooms with sinks.
Please.  

Just...stop.

Fracking moratorium fails in California despite strong public support

WOW!  More than a whiff! A nice breeze of sanity!
The bill was defeated when four of 24 Democrats joined all 12 Republicans senators in voting “nay,” while three other Democrats abstained, preventing the moratorium from gaining a majority. The loss comes even though two-thirds of voters in the Golden State said they supported the ban, and a majority of voters said they would be “more likely” to vote for a legislator who supported it as well, a recent survey on the issue by Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates found.

“This is the second time a house of the California state legislature has soundly rejected a moratorium on a routine practice that’s been deemed safe repeatedly,” Dave Quast, California director of Energy in Depth, an oil industry-backed group, told Reuters.

He said fracking in California creates jobs, increases state revenue and lessens the state’s dependence on oil imports.

...

“In Kern County, we have been safely fracking for decades,” GOP Sen. Andy Vidak told the Times. “[The moratorium] would lead to a heavy reduction of jobs.”

Jobs may not have been the only economic loss the state would have faced with a ban. According to a state Senate Appropriations fiscal summary of the bill, a fracking moratorium would cost California “at least in the mid-tens of millions” of dollars in lost revenue. However, the state will already be missing out on projected fracking revenue because of downgraded estimates of the Monterey Shale’s productivity.
And what a shame about the Monterey Shale.  But the story on it isn't over yet.

California lawmakers reject GMO labeling bill

Another whiff of sanity.  Why are there so few?
Senate Bill 1381 fell short of passage by just two votes in the 40-member chamber. The bill’s sponsor, Democratic Sen. Noreen Evans, said she would attempt to convince Senate leaders to bring a reconsideration vote on Thursday, according to the Sacramento Bee, before the legislative session ends on Friday.

The measure would demand all distributors who sell food in the state to label their products if any of the ingredients were made with genetically-modified organisms (GMOs). The bill excludes alcohol and food sold at farmers markets.
What an utterly worthless law.  In my opinion, passing it will not cause people to change their buying habits.  At first, there would be mild concern to shock.  Then when the consumer tries to find an alternative, they will discover one of two things:

1) there is no alternative
2)  the alternative is expensive.

So, the consumer will just keep buying the GMO.

Bill passes to push California's minimum wage to $13 an hour

I can't believe it.  They were WARNED.  Yet still, they are willing to kill the little workers' chances of having a job.

The bill by Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, comes about a month before the state's minimum wage is set to increase from $8 an hour to $9 in July as part of legislation signed by Gov. Jerry Brown last year that also included another $1 per hour by 2016.

Leno's SB 935 would override and increase the ladder raise as minimum wage would move to $11 in 2015, $12 in 2016 and $13 by 2017. Starting in 2018, the bill calls for additional adjustments annually for inflation. The bill is sponsored by the Women's Foundation of California and SEIU California State Council and is now headed to the stat Assembly for consideration.

"No one should be working full-time and living in poverty," Leno said. "Even with our increase last year, Californians will still be paid poverty wages and qualify for public assistance."
So, they want people 100% on public assistance.  How does that help????

I already posted an article about how fast food restaurants will just start closing restaurants if the minimum wage is increased.  So, the manager and assistant manager who make more than the line workers will lose their jobs. Thanks CA!  What stupidity.

Joel Kotkin: California's choice - growth or decline

Mr. Kotkin does a good job of trying to put a positive spin on things.  Nice try there, fella.
Last week, I decided to confront this issue over lunch at Citrus Grille in Orange, just down the block from Chapman University, where I teach. Charlie noted that the negative points I was making were correct, but I owed it to the readers to “write a piece on why California can be, and should be, a state with the right climate for business growth.”

So, we sat in the restaurant, working on a list of positive things for California to build on. We centered on working with our population, including many immigrants and entrepreneurs, reinforcing our connections to Asia and Mexico and, finally, taking advantage of our climate. “The great strength of California,” Charlie suggests, “is people – people who go out and make it on their own.
And it's a good list. But his statistic on immigrants - 25% of the CA population; does that include illegal as well as legal?

Paleo, vegan, gluten-free -- the only certainty about health trends is their reversal

A funny article about the diet trends in LA and how meaningless they are.

There are few cities that can compete with Los Angeles for the sheer energy its residents pour into health and diet trends. This town is the world leader in anxiety over what you should, and shouldn't, be eating. That's not necessarily a good thing. Having spent the last few years studying the evolution of various food trends, it's become clear no food trend is more powerful, and potentially dangerous, than one that targets health and diet.

Health trends are not new. Ever since humans have had enough to eat, we have worried about the right things to eat and devised diets to target various goals, including weight loss, beauty, sexual health and disease prevention. Nearly every consumable food and beverage, whether organ meats, tomatoes and grain liquor or sugary sodas have been praised, at one point, as a panacea.

Dan Walters: State policies exacerbate poverty by raising living costs

I don't know how many times this has to be said.  Hopefully, at some point, the state will wake up and see what its doing to itself.
For those who can afford to live here, high costs are offset by the other amenities of living in California, such as its scenery and mild weather.

For those at the other end of the ladder, however, living in California is a struggle to put roofs over their heads, food on their tables, clothes on their children and gas in their cars, and to stay warm in the winter and cool in the summer.

It’s fine to talk about government programs to help the poor, but wouldn’t it be better to alleviate the high living costs they face every day, and to create an economic climate that would give them more opportunities to climb the ladder through better jobs?

Or at the very least, not consciously push their living costs even higher?