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Posts Tagged ‘waste of tax money’



Still Gasping After Palin’s Wacko Step-Down Presser

Friday, July 3rd, 2009

palin winkCalbuzz has seen a lot of weird stuff in politics before, but Sarah Palin’s mouth-breathing stream of semi-consciousnesses — with water fowl, no less — was right up there with the strangest of them.

After serving all of two and a half years as governor, Palin has decided it would be “apathetic to hunker down and go with the flow” whatever the fig that means. So she’s stepping down to work “on the outside” (i.e. make a boatload of money as a celebrity speaker without pesky ethics investigators rummaging through her Naughty Monkeys).

Rumors abound in Alaska that federal investigators are looking at some connections between the Wasilla sports complex and the construction of Palin’s home. But Palin’s only explanation Friday was to suggest that keeping her job would be a waste of Alaskans’ tax money. WTF?

We’d love to hear your favorite riff. Ours was: “A good point guard, here’s what she does. She drives through a full court press, protecting the ball, keeping her head up because she needs to keep her eye on the basket and she knows exactly when to pass the ball so that the team can win and that is what I’m doing…keeping our eye on the ball…I know when it’s time to pass the ball for victory.”

No more politics as usual in Seward’s Icebox, promises the Alaskan Trailer Trash Queen.

A Calbuzz Look Beyond the Obvious: PPIC’s Poll on the Loser Props

Friday, May 8th, 2009

Growling BearThe Public Policy Institute of California is out with a new poll and – we trust you’re sitting down, Maude – all the May 19 budget props (1A-1E) are losing. Even 1F (which blocks pay increases for state electeds in deficit years) has lost ground (though it’s still a likely winner).

Prop 1A, Governor Arnold’s Big Dog, deficit-limiting/tax-hiking/rainy-day-fund-building kitchen sink measure, is losing 52-35% among likely voters, and runs even lamer among those following the election most closely: 65% No Way Dude vs 29% Sounds Like a Great Idea.

As PPIC pollster and big kahuna Marc Baldassare put it: “The voters who are really tuned in are really turned off.”

Here’s the PPIC Prop rundown among likely voters and corresponding Field Poll results:
• Prop. 1A (Rainy Day Budget Stabilization Fund)
52% N, 35% Y, 13% DK. Field Poll: 49-40-11.
• Prop. 1B (Education Funding)
47% N, 40% Y, 13% DK. Field: 49-40-11.
• Prop. 1C (Lottery Modernization)
58% N, 32% Y, 10% DK. Field: 59-32-9.
• Prop. 1D (Children’s Services Funding)
45% N, 43% Y, 12% DK. Field: 49-40-11.
• Prop. 1E (Mental Health Funding)
48% N, 41% Y, 11% DK. Field: 51-40-9.
• Prop. 1F (Elected Officials Salaries)
73% Y, 24% N, 3% DK. Field: 71-24-5.

What you gotta’ love about PPIC is that the late Bill Hewlett’s gonzo endowment, plus lotsa cash money from the James Irvine Foundation, lets these guys poll huge samples – in this case 2,005 respondents (+/- 2%), among whom they identify 1,080 likely voters (+/- 3%). Of course, size doesn’t always matter, since there’s not much real props news here beyond the lean, mean Field Poll published April 29.

Other numbers from PPIC, however, offer some important insight into the political landscape in California: voters are in an incredibly cranky and pessimistic state of mind. Check it:

– 91% say the state is in a recession
– 76% say the state’s headed in the wrong direction.
– 75% expect bad times financially for California in the next year.
– 51% have already lost a job or are concerned that they or a family member will lose a job.

More political gloom and doom:

– 80% disapprove of the Legislature.
– 76% say the state is run by a few big interests.
– 71% say people in government waste tax money.
– 56% disapprove of the governor.
– 16% say they trust state government to do what’s right all or most of the time.

Key nuance: While state pols are basically dead to likely voters (think Al Pacino kissing Fredo in Godfather II) and only 39% approve of the “job” Congress is doing – a staggering 66% of likelies, and 72% of all adults, approve of Barack Obama’s performance as president. Hmmm . . .

The underlying message: Those leading California today are, not to put too fine a point on it, UTTERLY TONE DEAF!

Cogito, ergo sum: When 47% of adults – and 57% of Californians making less than $40K – say they’re somewhat or very concerned they may lose their job in the next year, you have to be out of your bloody mind to propose anything that even smells like a tax increase for working people.

Will some candidate for governor tap into the voters’ fear and loathing? Will 2010 be the year of soak-the-rich populism? Will class warfare be the call of the wily? Stay tuned to Calbuzz. Plenty of free parking.