Tuesday, December 02, 2008

The path to oblivion

California is facing more crises than most of us can comprehend. The list includes an out of control State budget, a failed water policy, a near the bottom of the class educational system, health care costs that deny care to an increasing number of citizens, a total lack of appreciation for the effect of climate change and an unswerving faith in magical cures.

In the middle of crisis there is always opportunity. Yet the Green Party of California is nearly silent on most of these issues. It is no wonder that most citizens no longer see the Green Party as having a role to play in the future of this state as Green Party registrations are tanking worse than the Golden State Warriors in the 4th quarter. This must be turned around for us to continue. I have a few suggestions if you care to Read more!.

In the midst of all of these crises, the Green Party of California has turned inward rather than outward, regurgitating the past rather than advocating for a better future. On no issue is this more clear than regarding the budget making farce that plays daily at the Sacramento Theater.

Yesterday (Dec. 1) the San Francisco Chronicle wrote about the fact that the New California Legislature faces an old mess.
There is no escaping the grim math. The solution must involve a matter of addition (raising revenues) and subtraction (cutting spending). But the immediate challenge for legislators is to overcome the allegiances - to ideologies and to special interests - that prevent them from acting decisively on a crisis that is growing larger with each day of neglect.

If this is the most significant issue for California, you would never know it from the discussion on the GPCA email lists. It is as if it is unseemly for a Green to talk about the green, to actually discuss how we can solve the short run fact that the government of California is running out of cash, looking around for ways to borrow money that our children will pay back.

It is not as if we are out of people with experience. There are Green Party mayors and ex-city council members who fully understand the effects that our system of financing government is having on all level... but especially on local government who frequently see their revenues cut in order to satisfy State Government needs.

If we continue our silence on the issues of crisis, we will have missed the opportunities that they bring. We need an ad-hoc committee of current and ex-members of government to draft a position for the party and carry it to the public. Would it not be great if there were actually Greens in the Assembly who could provide a balance point between the ideologues whose political battles have paralyzed all action in Sacramento.

1 comment:

Alex Walker said...


I was just about to blog on this, using some of the same links, but once again Wes, you beat me to the punch (or in this instance I should say you beat me to the oasis of clean, clear water in the desert of California politics).