Politicians don’t deserve your hard-earned money

Pension moneyIt must be getting to the end of June. My junk and regular email boxes are filled with pleas from various political organizations and candidates begging for money prior to the end of the reporting period. Apparently, once the calendar reaches July 1st, politicians turn into pumpkins and must report their contributions for the world to see.

For California gubernatorial candidate Gavin Newsom this means:

Gavin needs to hit a big goal before the public filing deadline – and we were making progress, but now membership numbers are coming to a halt. This is the worst possible time to see a drop-off like this. Gavin’s numbers go public soon and reporters will pick them apart. Opponents will look for weaknesses.

We have the chance right now to elect Gavin and blow past the nonsense in Washington. We will make sure every Californian has health care and affordable education. We will take smart climate action and defend immigrant families. But we can ONLY do this if you chip in to hit this goal. Time’s running out, so a group of donors has agreed to match every dollar you give now to help Gavin.

Newsom isn’t alone in his plea for funds that more resembles Cinderella’s curfew than what we see in the real world of politics: Scott Walker asked me to open up my check book to further the conservative cause for the same reason. A group just contacted me who warned of the threat Senator Elizabeth Warren posed.

With the health care debate at the forefront of American politics, Democrats have come out in force to expand Obamacare. This alarming email was received which said:

Senator Elizabeth Warren thinks she knows what is right for all Californians: single payer health care. The Democrats don’t want you to think for yourself, and Elizabeth Warren is taking her radical agenda and bringing it to the front door of California.

The Senator from Massachusetts was quoted in the San Diego Union Tribune as saying: “Now it’s time for the next step. And the next step is single payer.” The solicitation concluded: It is important that you help stop Elizabeth Warren from forcing her ideals onto the people of California. Donate today and keep Warren out of CA.

Even House Majority Leader Paul Ryan has entered the fray saying:

Not only have we secured these policy wins, but we’ve also had incredible results with the special elections. So let’s add one more victory to our list by closing out the month with a strong FEC report. Chip in $50 right now. Because we need to finish strong, I am triple matching every donation made to House Republicans before midnight tomorrow.

In evaluating these pleas for cash, I have to ask the obvious question, what have you done for me lately?

In the case of Gavin Newsom, the prospect of having sanctuary cities, free education and single payer health insurance for the entire state – including illegal aliens – is what he offers. The only thing that scares me more than this agenda is figuring out how to pay for it. Apparently there won’t be enough money left from Newsom’s campaign fund to take care of any of his social programs.

In the same vein I’m not sure my donations will do much to stop Elizabeth Warren’s invasion of my state to impose her health care ideas down my throat. Unless money collected was to be used as a bribe to thwart the senator from Massachusetts from invading my turf, purchasing lottery tickets would seem to be a better investment for me.

As for Paul Ryan it would be difficult for me to send him my hard earned dollars because other than winning a few special elections, what has Congress accomplished the past several months? Most of their energy has been spent on ridiculous Russian investigations that are likely to be headed in the direction to the “stairway to heaven” school of politics.

Hey dude! Take care of fixing Obamacare and pass some tax reform legislation before you ask me to spring for more contributions.

And for my own Congressman Mark De Saulnier, D-Concord, who just sent an urgent message:

We are one day away from a critical fundraising deadline. Unfortunately, we’re falling short of our goal this quarter. This is my least favorite part of the job, but I have to ask for your help.

Fundraising allows me to keep fighting for you in Congress, where I’m trying to do my part to elect more Democrats. I need your help to continue doing my job, and to help my vulnerable colleagues keep their jobs. We’re doing everything we can to protect healthcare, women’s rights and living wages. There’s too much at stake to lose any seats in 2018.

All I can say, Mark, is that it is difficult to send money to an individual who has never had a viable opponent for occupying a seat in the House of Representatives. For what you are doing in constantly following the coat tails of Nancy Pelosi in Trump bashing, and not working with the Republican majority, giving you additional cash seems to be a waste of money.

If you are not going to interact with Republicans, at least get some pork barrel projects for the district which might create jobs and opportunity for us unlucky stiffs who are living in the boondocks. I don’t care if you are a Democrat or a Republican. Just get something done for your constituents who Congress has failed.

One last footnote for Gavin and all the others. Why would anyone other than a lobbyist or political hack care how much money has been donated to a campaign when the reporting period comes to a conclusion?

Has our democratic system of government sunk to such a low level that we would want to eliminate candidates for public office because they would not have enough funding to effectively compete? Talk about a lesson of elitism in action? This is an awful concept. Gag me with a spoon!

To the whole lot of you both Democrats and Republicans; don’t ask me to give money to your damn political campaigns. All you do is to fulfill Hunter Thompson’s immortal words, “When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.” As the 4th of July approaches, take a flying leap away from me.

California “Sanctuary State” bill a Trojan horse in waiting

If the Republican Party of California were to have a secret wish list, they would be in favor of the Assembly passing the Senate Bill 54 “Sanctuary State” legislation that has already gained approval by a party-line 27-12 tally in the Senate.

from the L.A. Times

Given the nature of the legislation where state law enforcement would refuse to co-operate with federal agencies to locate and deport undocumented residents who run afoul with the law, why would the GOP desire passage and have Governor Brown sign the bill that they have bitterly opposed?

The answer is simple. When SB-54 backfires with federal funds being taken away from California law enforcement along with what is sure to be a higher crime rate, voters are bound to take out their frustrations out at the ballot box. The Republican Party of California despite having less than one third of the seats in the Legislature and no statewide office holders may well find itself in a place to gain power once again that has long eluded them.

With California’s tight budget impaired by pension shortfalls for State workers and public assistance given to undocumented residents, losing funds from Washington, D.C., might not prove to be universally popular. Law enforcement and victims of crime are especially effected by the collateral damage SB-54 brings. This is especially true in suburban areas where the sanctuary city movement is weakest.

Where the state would be especially vulnerable is if illegal aliens/undocumented residents are not turned over to ICE and then commit serious crimes. How this could is justified by political leaders such as SB-54’s sponsor Assemblyman Kevin de Leon and candidate for governor Gavin Newsom? Is it possible to hold a pro law and order stance while trying to rationalize the victimization of the next Kate Steinle?

Even if Federal law enforcement funds being taken away from California by the Trump administration are replaced by revenues from the state budget, critics will surely claim sanctuary city legislation will result in fewer pot hole type repairs being taken care of. Even in the highly taxed progressive Golden State, there may limits of how far residents can be pushed in the name of social justice.

Public safety workers in general have been under attack by liberals in California and throughout the rest of the country. From New York with Mayor Bill de Blasio reigning in the police, to Chicago, Ferguson, Los Angeles and San Francisco, law enforcement has been put under increased scrutiny, especially in their dealings with African American citizens.

Use of deadly force, racial profiling and statistical analysis has placed law enforcement in a difficult position trying to justify their policies. Combined with civilian review boards, body cameras and politically correct interrogation procedures, those in Blue have had to adapt to what charitably can be termed defensive law enforcement procedures.

Also playing a role in the battle against crime circa 2017 has been the increased number of unprovoked violent attacks on police officers. It doesn’t take a genius to determine that this alarming trend has been enhanced by negative media coverage they have received from the fifth estate.

The bad press received by policeman has wormed its way into the local political spectrum. Recently, a group of about 400 protesters crashed a Berkeley City Council meeting to protest their involvement at an Urban Shield Expo put on by the department of Homeland Security.

The purpose of Urban Shield is to show new equipment, strategies and practice exercises to assist some 40 law enforcement agencies combat terrorist threats and violent demonstrations. As might be expected the prisoner rights organization Critical Resistance opposed advanced tactical training for law enforcement on the grounds it is oppressive, racist and discriminatory against racial minorities.

Despite a demonstration, shouting match and a couple arrests, even liberal Berkeley did not cave in (at least not that night) to having their police department skip the free federal training program. It was likely a good decision because in the past, law enforcement has been placed in multiple precarious situations in the wacky world of this progressive college town.

However, what occurred in Berkeley is not an isolated incident in California where virtually every aspect of law enforcement is challenged by well meaning groups who don’t especially like those who wear a badge. The first places they attack are any proposals to expand and modernize county jail facilities. Such tactics are the antithesis to the “build it and they will come” school of thought.

What makes this worse is that Federal dollars pay for most of these improvements. Sanctuary city proponents believe that not providing holding cells for illegal alien felons is an important component to their opposition to the activities of ICE.

Anyone wearing a uniform is subject to scrutiny by liberal media critics. Recently, extensive coverage was given to a hunger strike by some 72 inmates at Folsom correctional Institute. Sympathy was given to the prisoners who claimed lousy food, lack of exercise, isolation, poor medical care and substandard vocational training was making their lives miserable.

What wasn’t mentioned is that this group were not exactly Boy Scouts. They are serious felons who are part of an Administrative Segregation Unit. This means that those in this group have been accused of committing serious crimes while being incarcerated (including rape, murder, assault and drug smuggling). When in this program the state tries to determine if they should be prosecuted in order to add time to their mostly lengthy sentences. So if security is a bit tight with them …

Even with law enforcement being sliced and diced by progressive leaders in California, there is no move currently going on to do away with those who protect us from the bad guys. They play an important role when any type of trouble from robbery to domestic abuse ensues. A love-hate relationship has always existed between the two groups. This is why it is important for political leaders in Sacramento to be careful in their criticism of the police because one never knows when they will be needed.

Such an ever present reality is why Gov. Brown should be a follower of Aesop’s Fable reminder of “look before you leap” when it comes to signing SB-54 into law. Even though Brown is half way out the door in his fourth term, he should consider what might happen to his legacy if the sanctuary cities legislation backfires and brings his old Republican enemies into having a real say in state government once again.

Sb-54 may well turn out to be a Trojan horse in waiting. So  beware of what you wish for Jerry!