The events that are unfolding in California today (5/23/09) are unprecedented and will affect every state in The United States of America. The people have spoken and they have said “NO MORE NEW TAXES” A catalyst for a perfect storm on Tea Party Day July 4th, 2009.
What has transpired over the years in California that I have been in here (1980) is nothing less than tragic.
I moved to a state that was relatively easy to get a job if you really wanted one. If you didn’t want to work and wanted to be on welfare it was a lot more difficult to accomplish that goal.
California was led by the Democratic party from a land of sunshine, plenty of work and an occasional earthquake to a land of excruciating high taxes, huge numbers of illegal immigrants, easy welfare accommodations for anyone, strong control by the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) and SCAQMD (South Coast Air Quality Management District) and radically powerful, strong unions that have crippled the work force with a total disregard or understanding of how the economy works. Every day now there are protests in the streets by these unions demanding that their particular financial interests should be continually supported by the California government that is fiscally broken. They fail to see that the economy in California has completely collapsed.
Due to the Democratic mantra of “Tax and Spend” California has become the most unfriendly environment for both small and large businesses to flourish in. Consequently a lot of businesses have closed or have left California for other states and more than likely other countries.
An example of this is when Lockeed closed down it’s Burbank facilities instantly putting 15,000 people out of work. That is the figure just for Lockeed. It doesn’t address all the subcontractors for small parts and materials that went into the building of the aircraft in that facility.
Another example of that is the General Motors Plant in Van Nuys, CA. Built in 1947 and closed in 1992.
This plant towards the end built some of the worst cars ever assembled by General Motors. The Chevrolet Corvair, Camaro, Nova and Firebird.
While it is true that the plant was old, the property and the location were ideal for GM to build cars specifically for the California market. With some effort the palnt could have been rebuilt and modified for newer assembly line could have been built. How ever the decision was made to move this assembly plant to Sainte-Thérèse Assembly in Quebec, Canada.
So the issue at hand is jobs. As I have written about in the past, government does not create jobs. private enterprise creates jobs. The Democrats have completely damaged the business environment here in California. In the process of damaging the business environment the Democrats have diminished the tax base dramatically at the same time they have tried to make up for the lack jobs by huge tax rates for the people that still have jobs and businesses that are still open. The squeeze has to end somewhere or sometime and that somewhere and sometime is now.
I voted for Arnold Schwarzenegger (R-CA) hoping that he could get the job done. In the beginning he was doing a great job. But the Democrats saw his power and popularity as a threat and stone walled his every move and he finally capitulated to the Democrats and agreed to raise State Income Taxes, DMV (Department of Motor Vehicle) taxes, and State Sales Tax which is the most destructive tax a legislator could ever raise. This has exacerbated the crumbling economy here in California.
As long as California is a Democratically controlled state it will never ever regain the grand status that has left us in the late 70’s and the 80’s. The Democratic stranglehold on the State of California will be very hard to break because of two simple facts. 1. The number of business owners that would lobby against the Democrats is dwindling. The number of employees that expect their employers to provide all kind of services for free greatly out number the employers. 2. The number of people that expect the California Government to provide everything for free is in control of who is put in office.
In fact California is so damaged that there is serious discussion about rewriting the California Constitution. The California Constitution is not broken, the Democratic party that is interpreting the California Constitution is broken.
How is rewriting the California Constitution going to help the people of California get new jobs created by new companies that start and flourish and old companies that expand and grow and hire people?
I’m sure that with the state of California being run by Democrats, the “New and Improved” version of the California Constitution will be so severely flawed and skewed towards the Democratic mantra of “Tax & Spend” that the State of California will just continue to deteriorate at a much greatly increased speed.
Here is the next thing to think about. California has always been on the leading edge of trends that eventually move through out the rest of the states. If the California Constitution gets re-written will the following happen?
1. Will the Democrats in the other 49 states try to rewrite their own states constituion?
2. Will Barack Obama and the Obama Administration try to rewrite the US Constitution making the United States an even greater ‘Land of Entitlement”? Thus creating a land that contains a plethora of welfare available to anyone from the United States or any other country just by asking for it and not proving that an individual really needs welfare funds to begin with?
For some reason in past years there has been a fairly complex and sometimes efficient system of checks and balances between the Democrats and the Republicans. But all that has changed with the deteriorating economy.
I have a comment about education in California. I understand and I am in sympathy of what is happening in the schools with the cutbacks and overcrowding. But here is a question. Do you remember what John Kennedy said” “Ask not what your country can do for you, Rather ask what you can do for your country!” I have to admit for a Democrat he was connected to reality more than any other Democrat or Republican for that matter by saying this.
So here is my point. When some one decides to have a child, the responsibility of education should be partially funded by the individuals that have children that are being taught in the primarily the K-12 education system. Junior Colleges and State colleges are already paying tuition. To believe that education can be completely funded by state and local property taxes is absurd. I believe that the parents of these children should pay something towards enrollment for students. This tuition payed can only be used in that school that the tuition was payed to. Not to all the schools in the district. Maybe it is a small amount to subsidize, but it is something that that will help ease the financial burden of the California educational system. Which leads to why I brought up John Kennedy’s famous statement. Not all property tax payers have children in the educational system especially older citizens. Why should the burden of funding people that have children in the system be places on people that are not using the system. This is not to say that people that do not have children in the education system should not pay anything. That is not what I am saying. What I’m saying is that the people that do have children in the education system have to pay some kind of a tuition to offset the shrinking tax revenue do to loss of jobs, poorer paying jobs that does not generate high volumes of income tax and of course the number of foreclosure on homes that is diminishing property taxes. I do not know the numbers exactly but the logic is that the greater majority of people with children are renters and do not pay any property tax yet their children are in the schools. The amount of property tax on a commercial apartment building doesn’t even come close to paying for all the kids in that building. OK so you ask why doesn’t the landlord pay higher taxes? Well the local county could raise taxes…..but guess what? You are right. Rent would go through the roof and people would not be able to afford the apartment that they are renting nor would they have a big enough deposit to move to a different building. In general raising taxes is always a bad thing.
It all goes back to what I believe.
If the Democrats can keep people poor, uneducated, unemployed and desperate they will always have a voter base.