14 White Men of Principle, Yeah Right.

The Orange County Register’s Brian Joseph reports today on the impact of the state budget stalemate on public services in Orange County.

For Orange County, it could be worse. Much worse.

In ways big and small, the effect of a late state budget is being felt across California by community colleges, government vendors and special education programs whose payments stop until it passes.

Since July 20, the $145 billion budget has been held up by 14 Senate Republicans who are pushing for more cuts and changes that would prevent a greenhouse-gas law from being used as the basis for lawsuits until regulations can be drafted.

“The impact is real,” said Sen. Lou Correa, D-Santa Ana, who toured affected clinics this week. “Despite Orange County doing better than other counties, the impacts are real.”

Bills are mounting. People are frustrated.

But for the Medi-Cal providers that are perhaps most hurt by the impasse, Orange County has the advantage of its financially sound CalOptima health system. While many hospitals and nursing homes are coping without payments, most in the county are being paid from CalOptima reserves.

That money has helped prevent major cutbacks. But even so, places such as UCI Medical Center must operate without several hundred thousand dollars a week. And others who can’t be paid through the system are faring worse.

Charee Clark, a director of Acacia Adult Day Services, said the nonprofit is considering closing its Cypress facility – one of two it runs – because of the impasse. Clark’s 83-year-old mother, who has Alzheimer’s disease, spends her days at the facility instead of in an expensive nursing home.

“That would be devastating for my family’s situation,” Clark said of the potential closure.

If the budget is not approved today – and it almost certainly won’t be – this year’s impasse will become the fourth-longest in recent history.

The Los Angeles Times Michael Rothfeld reports today; The senators, unswayed by the governor’s pleading, say they’re standing up for their constituents and the state’s fiscal integrity.

When state Sen. Bob Margett walks among the manufacturers and dairy farmers of his conservative district, he says, “it’s all attaboys” for his part in the seven-week budget stalemate that has paralyzed much of state government.

” ‘Bob, . . . thank God for the Senate,’ ” the Arcadia lawmaker recalled hearing time and again. “I’m getting all these attaboys to hang in there, and that’s my constituency. I don’t have a single vote in San Francisco.”

Margett represents parts of Los Angeles, Orange and San Bernardino counties.

Nor is he beholden to voters in other largely Democratic urban areas. Margett and 13 GOP colleagues in the Senate represent a minority of Californians, mostly in rural towns, yet by banding together to withhold the one vote still needed, they have stretched the budget deadlock to 48 days.

Margett, who was home in Arcadia nearing the end of Leo Tolstoy’s 800-page novel “Anna Karenina” as the stalemate wore on this week, said the governor’s move to the middle had alienated the senators from him politically.

“He could, other than on fiscal issues, be a very good Democrat,” Margett said. “It’s not that we don’t like the governor. He’s a hell of a guy. He’s great to have at a cocktail party.”

Lawmakers will almost certainly pass a budget eventually, but Margett is unlikely to vote for it. During six years in the Assembly and two in the Senate, he never has voted for one.

“We’ve been in a financial jam for years,” he said. “We haven’t run this state like a good corporation would be run.”

The problem with Margett’s is that government is not a for profit enterprise and the theory that it should be run “like a good corporation would be run” is a flawed concept promoted by people, who based upon their ‘principles’, do not believe in government at all.

People who do not believe in government cannot possibly govern.  The majority of Californians know this, but these 14 budget terrorists are holding our state, and vital services hostage.

The Register goes on to report:

Since July 20, the $145 billion budget has been held up by 14 Senate Republicans who are pushing for more cuts and changes that would prevent a greenhouse-gas law from being used as the basis for lawsuits until regulations can be drafted. Only one Republican needs to change his vote to end the stalemate.

More than two weeks remain before the state breaks its Sept. 5 record for the longest impasse, but already there’s talk this could be one for the books. 

Ackerman’s band of 14 says what it wants is simple and straightforward, but Democrats and Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger say they don’t really understand what the Senate Republicans are after. They blame Republicans for the problems Acacia and other clinics are facing.

“The impact is real,” said Sen. Lou Correa, D-Santa Ana, who toured affected clinics this week. “Despite Orange County doing better than other counties, the impacts are real.”

The budget is being held up not because Ackerman’s band of 14 want to stand for fiscal responsibility as they have been claiming.  Rather these guys are holding government services hostage to pushe their minority view on the entire state of California.

Their strategy is really simple.  Shut down government so that people believe that government doesn’t work.  Then use that perception of government failure to further their agenda to reduce the role of government and transfer those functions to private control.

Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1). Random House, Inc. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/Terrorism (accessed: August 18, 2007). defines terrorism as a terroristic method of governing or of resisting a government.

These men of privelege, who do not believe in government, are not standing on fiscal principle at all.  They are simply holding budget approval hostage to further their own agenda on issues unrelated to the budget, that would otherwise never have a chance of approval.

  23 comments for “14 White Men of Principle, Yeah Right.

  1. August 19, 2007 at 7:05 am

    I believe you left out the part of the Register article that says:

    “Republicans counter that they proposed emergency appropriations for such groups that Democrats rejected.”

    Hmm, important detail?

  2. Andrew Davey
    August 19, 2007 at 7:29 am

    Adam-

    PUH-LEESE! The Democrats did NOT reject any proposal to fully fund our obligations. It’s the REPUBLICANS in the Senate that are obstructing a budget that fully funds our priorities. And now, the REPUBLICANS are trying to spin this fact away with their BS. So no, I don’t consider their spin to be “important details”.

  3. Democracy Works
    August 20, 2007 at 9:34 am

    Democratic whinos… If the liberals don’t want an impasse on the budget then maybe they shouldn’t run rough shod over bils that hint of any fiscal conservatism or bolstering the growth of businesses rather than entitlements. What do you expect when 9 out of the 10 months the legislature is in session liberals get their way on everything and prevent any substantive dialogue with their stacked committees?

    There were alternatives to the budget impasse. They just weren’t liberal Democratic alternatives…

  4. Rick2L
    August 20, 2007 at 12:21 pm

    It amazes me how those who support the elitist and anti-democratic methods of the 14 ‘publicans holding up the budget can unashamedly snivel about bolstering the growth of business. What about business needs bolstering in California?

  5. August 20, 2007 at 12:30 pm

    The problem with Margett’s is that government is not a for profit enterprise

    You’re right about that part, Chris.

    A business earns revenues be providing a service that customers are willing to pay for.

    Government gets its revenues to forcibly taking money from people and throwing them in jail if they refuse.

  6. Dan Chmielewski
    August 20, 2007 at 1:16 pm

    so what do you propose Matt; an all-volunteer contribution for roads, police, fire, jails, courts system et al?

    There is a considerable amount of corporate welfare out there too.

  7. August 20, 2007 at 1:27 pm

    No Dan — just making a point that seems to get forgotten. If one is going to object to the notion of trying to run government in a business-like manner, then it merits pointing out the basic distinction between government and business.

    It’s always struck me as funny how liberals (and yes, I’m generalizing) love the institution that is based upon force but are suspicious or disdainful of the institution based on voluntary cooperation.

  8. RHackett
    August 20, 2007 at 5:19 pm

    Jubal. Could be because that most liberals are well read enough to know the history of business and how it treated people. They were so into voluntary cooperation that most people were owned by the company store if they could even get a job and this la la land concept of laissez faire economic policy allowed the so much opportunity the US eventually had economic collapse that almost threw the country into anarchy.

    Dan brings up the point of corporate welfare. I’ve brought up the companies that have de facto monopolies (cable TV et al) and why folks like Greenhut and yourself never assail those groups who have manipulated the “free” market to their own gain and yet I rarely if ever read or hear a critical word from either of you. Why is that? Could it be those companies could be potential clients or pay for ad revenue in a dying communication model? Not that I see lone gunmen behind grassy knolls. But the two of you have no problem criticizing public employees.

  9. RHackett
    August 20, 2007 at 5:20 pm

    Pardon the typos. I’m not an op ed writer or public affairs professional. I do recognize the difficulty in getting copy correct the first time.

  10. demmother
    August 20, 2007 at 5:46 pm

    Holding up the State Budget is costing companies that contract with the government a ton of dough. I just love Republican principles.

  11. August 20, 2007 at 6:20 pm

    Jubal. Could be because that most liberals are well read enough to know the history of business and how it treated people. They were so into voluntary cooperation that most people were owned by the company store if they could even get a job and this la la land concept of laissez faire economic policy allowed the so much opportunity the US eventually had economic collapse that almost threw the country into anarchy.

    Sounds like you’ve been reading too much Howard Zinn. You might try reading some real history books.

    You know, they’re still trying the “capitalism stinks, let’s put government in charge” experiment over in Cuba. Why don’t you visit and let us know how it’s working after almost 50 years?

  12. RHackett
    August 20, 2007 at 6:38 pm

    Like which ones? Are you going to tell us with a straight face the owners of the Trusts at the turn of the last century treated the working class well? I would say you’re the one who believes in revisionist history.

    I guess Teddy Roosevelt pushed the Sherman Anti Trust Act because he nothing better to do in between hunting trips. And I like Teddy. One of the great Presidents of our nation’s history despite his paradoxes. He supported big business while passing the the aforementioned Anti Trust Act. He was a staunch conservationist establishing the national parks while being an avid hunter.

    I’m sure child labor didn’t exist, nor did abhorrent conditions in factories.

    You didn’t answer the question on why you never go after corporate welfare or private companies that have defacto monopolies. I’ll take your point of view seriously when you start going after those entities as aggressively as you do government.

  13. Dan Chmielewski
    August 20, 2007 at 7:53 pm

    “You know, they’re still trying the “capitalism stinks, let’s put government in charge” experiment over in Cuba. Why don’t you visit and let us know how it’s working after almost 50 years? ”

    Working pretty damn well for the PRC; how much of our country do they own?

  14. RHackett
    August 20, 2007 at 9:10 pm

    Great minds think alike Dan. I was going to mention the PRC. Interesting what a communist country can become when we are their trading partners and not imposing a trade policy that is not in conflict with the concept of the “free market.”

    And I would be willing to bet the conditions in all those state run factories/sweatshops aren’t much different than those in America at the turn of the last century.

  15. August 20, 2007 at 10:24 pm

    Working pretty damn well for the PRC;

    The PRC has succeeded economically to the extent they embraced communism and eschewed government planning.

    Although that one-child per family thing hasn’t worked out too well, since now their aren’t enough women to go around.

    Oh well — the best laid plans of government planners!

  16. August 20, 2007 at 10:24 pm

    Substitute “capitalism” for communism.

  17. August 20, 2007 at 10:27 pm

    And I would be willing to bet the conditions in all those state run factories/sweatshops aren’t much different than those in America at the turn of the last century.

    I think the key word their, RHackett, is “state-run.”

  18. RHackett
    August 21, 2007 at 6:17 am

    Jubal.

    Do you really believe working conditions would be better were it not for government in the form of OSHA etc.? When business had the opportunity to provide a safe clean environment for their work force they chose differently. Privately owned business at that time were probably (since I haven’t seen them first hand) no different than the PRC state-run factories that exist there today. And while they have eschewed government planning they haven’t embraced capitialism either. I find your stereotype that since I’m a critic (not an opponent) of business that I must be Cuban style commie. Good to know the mindset of a conservative.

    And when are you going to start addressing my point on the monopolistic practices of the concerns I asked about earlier? Or is one of the types of companies a client? Or is a client of one of your partners? Either way it doesn’t matter. Your silence on the issue speaks volumes.

  19. Dan Chmielewski
    August 21, 2007 at 8:11 am

    well, if you want a closer look at “self-regulation by industry,” how long has the Superfund been dry? This was supposed to be funded by the polutters iin order to cliean up toxic waste sites.

    That self-monitoring for safety by the mining industry is working really well in Utah.

    Matt, Government can be effective managers of public policy; but to say Government should function as a business is a reach.

  20. August 22, 2007 at 11:17 am

    …most people were owned by the company store if they could even get a job…

    There were about 75 million people in the U.S. in 1900, a year before TR became president. So you’re telling me most of those 75 million people lived in company towns?

    According to the Census, in 1900, 46.5% of Americans owned their own home.

    …and this la la land concept of laissez faire economic policy allowed the so much opportunity the US eventually had economic collapse that almost threw the country into anarchy.

    You really might want to read some real history. The “capitalism caused the Great Depression” remains an article of faith only among hard left historians because it is unsupported by the evidence. It was inept government actions and policies that transformed an economic downturn into a cataclysm.

  21. August 22, 2007 at 11:27 am

    Matt, Government can be effective managers of public policy; but to say Government should function as a business is a reach.

    I’m really not one of the “government should operate like a business” crowd. Like Chris said, government isn’t a business. The former obtains revenues by force, the latter voluntarily.

    That doesn’t mean government shouldn’t adopt private sector best-practices that increase efficiency in order to help government provide the services at a lower cost to taxpayers.

    My attitude tends towards the Barry Goldwater line: “I have little interest in streamlining government or in making it more efficient, for I mean to reduce its size.” While I do have an interest in streamlining government and making it more efficient, Goldwater’s point — to which I subscribe — is reducing its size is more important.

  22. August 22, 2007 at 11:35 am

    And when are you going to start addressing my point on the monopolistic practices of the concerns I asked about earlier? Or is one of the types of companies a client? Or is a client of one of your partners? Either way it doesn’t matter. Your silence on the issue speaks volumes.

    And your historical ignorance is deafening.

    And are uninformed insinuations what you resort to when argument fails you?

    You didn’t answer the question on why you never go after corporate welfare or private companies that have defacto monopolies.

    Given the nature of Red County/OC Blog — covering OC politics — it doesn’t offer much opportunity for covering those topics. But for the record, I’m opposed to government subsidies for businesses. If I had my way, I’d abolish farm subsidies, ethanol subsidies, export subsidies, etc. I don;t want government taking my money and giving to some business that didn’t earn it and than I want them taking it and giving to some individual who didn’t earn it.

    As for the “de facto monopolies” question, you’d have to give some specific examples, but I do support the principle of preventing a single company from controlling a particular market.

  23. RHackett
    August 22, 2007 at 11:41 am

    The “capitalism caused the Great Depression” remains an article of faith only among hard left historians because it is unsupported by the evidence. It was inept government actions and policies that transformed an economic downturn into a cataclysm.

    And who was pulling the levers of government in their favor? I doubt it was the factory or field workers. It was the owners of capitalism.

    Please don’t try and tell us the sweat shop reality that existed during the Industrial Revolution is incorrect. I doubt you’d find many (save the wacko right wing) who would believe that.

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