Monday, November 23, 2009

Not with a bang.

The condemnation of the current political regime in Sacramento has become nearly universal. The following T. S. Eliot inspired quote appeared in the August/September issue of Connections, a publication of the Peace and Justice Center, Stockton, CA.
This is the way California ends. Not with a bang, but a whimper. With a failure of leadership so complete, so total, as to leave the state bereft of hope for its future.
Those were the final words of an opinion piece by Robert Cruickshank from his July 19th post at Calitics.

I am not as pessimistic as Robert was in this post, but then maybe he sees more of the intestinal insides of power politics than I do. After all, he is a delegate to the State Democratic Party. I still hold out the hope of a fundamental change that I believe is necessary if the never truly realized dream of California is to have another chance.

It should be clear to all that the frustration with Sacramento politics as usual has essentially gone viral in California. Comb through the comments to OpEds in the opinion pages of any California newspaper from the very Libertarian Orange County Register to San Francisco Chronicle and you need to hack through the resentment with a mental machete, filtering it out to determine if there is any real substance to the comment or just emotion.

We are now ready to got through another long, painful and secretive budget process. Economic recovery has not come to California. If history repeats itself, California will lag the rest of the nation in terms of job creation and that makes it very difficult to be optimistic about revenue projections for the State. It appears that history will also repeat itself in that the real negotiations will take place in secret meetings and then both sides will run to the nearest microphone to sell the result as a victory for their side.

California needs a legislature where there are no backroom deals, where the process of legislative budgeting if fully transparent and open to media and the public, where the education of our children is an assumed responsibility of government, where the care of the ill and dying is not determined by the need to pay executive bonuses, where water is a human right and not a tradeable commodity.

If your legislator is not running to deliver all of the above, then it is time to go in a new direction. Those goals, common to most Californians, define what Green candidates can, and if elected, will deliver. Green candidates who do not accept corporate donations are set free to serve the public rather than their masters.

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