Immorality in California Politics … More Than Sexual Harassment

Due to my bypass surgery, not only do I walk a couple of miles or more every day, but go to the gym twice a week and have a personal trainer.  The young man is 24, gets paid well, has a college degree and is looking toward his future as a realtor.  Yesterday he told me that he was not interested in politics and did not care.  I asked him if he got paid—YES.  Does his employer take taxes out of his paycheck, YUP.  So, you are having government take your money, you are well educated—but not interested in what government is doing to you?  For various reasons I suspect he is a “liberal”—but obviously has no understanding of issues or how they affect him.

I explained that every aspect of our lives are controlled by government.  Then he told me that government gives him “things”.  Like roads—I explained HE paid for them through taxes.  Education—again paid by his taxes.  From the time he gets up in the morning till the time he goes to sleep every aspect of his life is controlled by government.  At the end of the discussion I had him thinking.  Just one person at a time—but we have to start somewhere.

“Citizens should compare political performance with campaign promises. But most don’t — and that’s why citizens often become victims of legislation introduced to please special interests who do pay attention. But now, organizations such as Govern For California that support pro-citizen legislators and legislation are paying serious attention.

We know not only what legislators say but also what they propose and how they vote. We know they have reduced the share of the state budget available to universities, courts, parks and social services nearly in halfdoubled spending in favor of healthcare industry cronies at the expense of other programs, magically created debt to the detriment of the state’s most vulnerable citizens and taxpayers, and much more.”

Capitol

Immorality in California Politics … More Than Sexual Harassment

David Crane, City Watch LA,  1/1/18

GUEST COMMENTARY–Sexual harassment by elected officials in California is all over the news but less visible forms of political immorality are just as prevalent. One example is that of state legislators who sell students, families and vulnerable citizens down the river to boost prison guard compensation.

Another is legislators protecting the profits and turfs of cronies while ignoring the healthiness and convenience of 14 million customers of the state’s sub-functional single-payer system, Medi-Cal.

Other examples include state officials opposing student civil rights and legislators robbing K-12 students and young teachers of their futures out of fear of powerful commercial interests.

Corrections employees in California collect compensation far exceeding the revenues of the country’s largest private prison corporations. The cost is borne by families, students and the needy. Where is the morality in that trade?

Citizens should compare political performance with campaign promises. But most don’t — and that’s why citizens often become victims of legislation introduced to please special interests who do pay attention. But now, organizations such as Govern For California that support pro-citizen legislators and legislation are paying serious attention.

We know not only what legislators say but also what they propose and how they vote. We know they have reduced the share of the state budget available to universities, courts, parks and social services nearly in halfdoubled spending in favor of healthcare industry cronies at the expense of other programs, magically created debt to the detriment of the state’s most vulnerable citizens and taxpayers, and much more.

Mark Twain famously said “everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.” The same aphorism applies to politics. Few subjects are more discussed — and fewer conversations are less informed. That leads to dangerous outcomes as well-meaning people too often support legislators who say one thing but do another.

The California Legislature reconvenes January 3rd. We will be watching every bill and every vote. It’s not enough that just sexual harassers are on their way out. Politically immoral legislators also need to shape up or depart.

We all owe it to our fellow citizens to be well informed and to take smart actions. There are plenty of ways to do so. Know what legislators do, not just what they say — and then hold them accountable.

 

(David Crane is a lecturer at Stanford University and president of Govern For California.)  

 

About Stephen Frank

Stephen Frank is the publisher and editor of California Political News and Views. He speaks all over California and appears as a guest on several radio shows each week. He has also served as a guest host on radio talk shows. He is a fulltime political consultant.