The other day, as I sat in my brown recliner clicking through various political talk shows, I discovered that just about the only thing politicians could agree on seemed to be “closing loopholes.” It was unanimous. “Loopholes” are bad. Not a dissenter in the house. But what they say on talk shows doesn’t always match […]
A few days ago, a friend and I were having lunch in a Greek café in downtown Sacramento and the conversation turned to education reform. My friend has been a teacher, administrator, and for the last ten years, an education policy analyst with the California Legislature. She admits that she has lost more battles than […]
President Thomas Jefferson wrote, “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.” Jefferson’s wise admonition has been ignored. According to the Legislative Analyst’s Office (LAO), 72% of incoming students to our California Community Colleges need remedial instruction in the English […]
Reading SB 331 (Mendoza), I was reminded of the proverb made famous by playwright Clare Booth Luce, “No good dead goes unpunished.” SB 331 would significantly increase the costs of providing vital services to residents to punish any local government that had the temerity of enacting an ordinance that discloses to the public the provisions […]
“It is not my intention to do away with government. It is rather to make it work – work with us, not over us, and stand by our side, not ride our back.”
California’s system of government, consisting of elected representatives and the direct democracy of the initiative, referendum and recall, serves the public interest only when leaders stand up for what is right.
The Lincoln-Roosevelt League volunteers and Governor Hiram Johnson, who spearheaded the grassroots drive to create the ballot initiative process in 1911, wouldn’t be surprised that […]
Pythagoras, the ancient Greek philosopher and mathematician, said “choices are the hinges of destiny.” Are state lawmakers making good or bad policy choices as we enter the forth year of the worst drought in California history? What kind of future are they building for us?
On April 27, the Assembly Natural Resources Committee heard AB 311 […]
When I drive to the Post Office on Nevada Street or pick up a few plants at Eisley’s Nursery, I’m reminded how fast time flies. I always smile when I see the ten tall trees in a row like brave sentinels guarding the Domes on the corner of Fulweiler Avenue and Nevada Street.
Twelve years […]
For my generation, the 1975 music video “I’m just a Bill,” by School House Rock was our first introduction to civics. Kids still watch this classic video. As the cartoon kids sing about how “knowledge is power” – channeling the 17th Century English statesman and scientist Francis Bacon – one gets the strong […]
Watching the devastating impacts on human beings as the Sand Fire swept through the borderlands of Amador and El Dorado counties, it reminded me that momentum is a powerful force in both nature and the creation of public policy. For instance, there is a scientific phenomenon called a firestorm. A firestorm occurs when the fire […]