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California Politics
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The Perfect World >> Politics >> California Politics

California Politics

GregD -- Friday, November 12, 2004 -- 05:00:24 PM

It's the fifth largest economy in the world, the largest state economy in the US, representing 13% of the GDP, and a global hub of tomorrow's technologies and industries. Its central valley is one of the world's most fertile growing regions, producing much of the nation's fruit, vegetables, and nuts. It contains three of the top ten most populous regions of the United States. It's the Golden State. The Land of Milk and Honey. It's California.

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Pincher Martin -- Thursday, December 22, 2011 -- 06:00:32 PM -- 2531 of 2775
"Whoever is winning at the moment will always seem to be invincible." -- George Orwell

"A Vandalized Valley" by Victor Davis Hanson

A couple now in their early 90s lives about three miles away from me on their small farm. I have known them for 50 years; he went to high school with my mother, and she was my Cub Scout leader. They now live alone and have recently been robbed nine, yes, nine, times. He told me he is thinking of putting a sign out at the entrance to his driveway: “Go away! Nothing left! You’ve already taken everything we have.” Would their robbers appreciate someone else doing that to their own grandparents? Do the vandals have locks on their own doors against other vandals?
There is indeed something of the Dark Ages about all this. In the vast rural expanse between the Sierras and the Coast Ranges, and from Sacramento to Bakersfield, our rural homes are like stray sheep outside the herd, without whatever protection is offered by the density of a town. When we leave for a trip or just go into town, the predators swarm.
Last summer several cars drove into my driveway, the surprised occupants ready with all sorts of innocent-sounding inquiries: “We just are looking for a rental.” “Do you have scrap for sale?” “We’re having car trouble.” And so on.
All this serves as a sort of red/green traffic light: If someone comes out from the house, the driver poses the question and then abruptly leaves; but if no one appears, he strikes quickly. I remember three or four intruders I confronted this year who had trucks as nice as or nicer than my 2006 Toyota. Two had sports apparel more expensive than my jeans and sweatshirt. All were heavier than I. In other words, malnourishment, the desire for basic transportation, the need for clothing on their backs — all the classically cited catalysts for stealing — are not what is driving these modern vandals.
Kate D -- Thursday, December 22, 2011 -- 10:06:25 PM -- 2532 of 2775
What will it profit a man to gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?

How depressing. Combined with the direction my former town is taking and the burglary of my parents' home, it's enough to make me want to buy and learn to use a gun for property protection.

AytchMan -- Thursday, December 22, 2011 -- 10:58:38 PM -- 2533 of 2775
...the noise electric never stops...

You'd have a lot of company. Forty-seven percent of US households now own at least one gun.

Amaxen -- Thursday, December 22, 2011 -- 10:59:43 PM -- 2534 of 2775
In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.

Gun company stocks are doing really, really well, I might add.

jenrenton -- Friday, December 23, 2011 -- 01:43:07 AM -- 2535 of 2775
Snowflake mother

The worst, though, is the dangerousness of the driving in the central valley. My parents were nearly killed two weeks ago (my father just managed to avoid being hit) when a car blew through a stop sign and crossed the major road that they were traveling on, in the dark, at at least 60 miles per hour. Head-on and T-crossing collisions are appallingly common on valley roads. No one has any knowledge of the rules of right-of-way, and drunk driving is par for the course any evening after five or six.

Pincher Martin -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 06:23:44 AM -- 2536 of 2775
"Whoever is winning at the moment will always seem to be invincible." -- George Orwell

California's Demographic Revolution

A long but excellent piece showing how my "pet issue" -- as Sheridan described it in another thread -- has completely transformed the politics of my state.

U.S.-born Hispanic households in California already use welfare programs (such as cash welfare, food stamps, and housing assistance) at twice the rate of U.S.-born non-Hispanic households, according to an analysis of the March 2011 Current Population Survey by the Center for Immigration Studies. Welfare use by immigrants is higher still. In 2008–09, the fraction of households using some form of welfare was 82 percent for households headed by an illegal immigrant and 61 percent for households headed by a legal immigrant....
Hispanics’ reliance on the government safety net helps explain their ongoing support for the Democratic Party. Indeed, liberal spending policies are a more important consideration for Hispanic voters than ethnic identification or the so-called values issues that they are often said to favor. “What Republicans mean by ‘family values’ and what Hispanics mean are two completely different things,” says John Echeveste, founder of the oldest Latino marketing firm in Southern California and a player in California Latino politics. “We are a very compassionate people; we care about other people and understand that government has a role to play in helping people.” That Democratic allegiance was on display in the 2010 race for lieutenant governor, when Hispanics favored San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom, the epitome of an elite tax-and-spend liberal, over the Hispanic Republican incumbent, Abel Maldonado, despite Newsom’s unilateral legalization of gay marriage in San Francisco in 2004. La Opinión, California’s largest Spanish-language newspaper, cited Newsom’s “good progressive platform” in endorsing him. In the 2010 race for state attorney general, Hispanic voters helped give the victory to liberal San Francisco district attorney Kamala Harris, who was running against Los Angeles district attorney Steve Cooley, a law-and-order moderate—even in Cooley’s own backyard of L.A.
Republican political consultants routinely argue that California’s Hispanics were driven from their natural Republican home by a 1994 voter initiative—backed by then-governor Pete Wilson, a Republican—denying most government benefits to illegal aliens. But it would be almost impossible today to find a Hispanic immigrant who has even heard of Proposition 187. Jim Tolle, pastor of one of the largest Hispanic churches in Southern California, La Iglesia En El Camino, says that his congregation knows nothing about Prop. 187.

Even today we still have idiots in the Republican Party who claim we need to appeal to Hispanics, as if small state conservatives have any common grounds in which to lure them over.

CalGal -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 07:28:03 AM -- 2537 of 2775
I remember a time, back in the late 90s, when I thought nonsense like this mattered somewhat more than I do now. Now I see well-educated people yammering about the birth control choices of their daughters, or gay marriage, and I think they are morons.

I can't stand Heather Macdonald. Overwrought and full of herself.

Even though I'm worried about California's demographics, I hate Macdonald so much that I'm less worried now that she's hyperventilating about it. Not much. Just a little. But she's that utterly useless.

CalGal -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 07:28:50 AM -- 2538 of 2775
I remember a time, back in the late 90s, when I thought nonsense like this mattered somewhat more than I do now. Now I see well-educated people yammering about the birth control choices of their daughters, or gay marriage, and I think they are morons.

And before you go blaming California residents again, remember that the state has tried in multiple ways to stop this from happening. If there were a ballot to ban illegal aliens from public schools, it would pass.

jenrenton -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 07:48:20 AM -- 2539 of 2775
Snowflake mother

Why dislike Macdonald? That seems irrational to me; she's written many articles on underreported issues without most of the emotional bloviating that so often characterizes female journalism.

CalGal -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 02:51:49 PM -- 2540 of 2775
I remember a time, back in the late 90s, when I thought nonsense like this mattered somewhat more than I do now. Now I see well-educated people yammering about the birth control choices of their daughters, or gay marriage, and I think they are morons.

Clearly you haven't read her on the subject of atheism.

And once you do, it really starts to look as if she's just faking it to be successful, which is what I've believed about her ever since. I think she just writes what will get Republicans going.

I no longer believe that she's genuine on anything--except her expectation that, having carried so much water for conservatives on immigration, she should warrant extra consideration for being an atheist.

ETA: When looking for an article that echoes my contempt, I found this, which accurately captures not only my disdain for her hackneyed objections to religion, but also my belief that anyone who thinks like this can't be taken seriously on any subject.

Amaxen -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 04:04:41 PM -- 2541 of 2775
In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.

...and the logic behind PM's article is why, for instance, the CA GOP doesn't consider old people as a potential voting block, what with their built in preference for government programs like SS, Medicaid, and Medicare. That's why the CA GOP tries to punch old people in the face every chance they get - they know that old people are a natural constituency for big government, so they are of course the enemy, to be antagonized and insulted at every opportunity.

Amaxen -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 04:06:09 PM -- 2542 of 2775
In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.

The real problem that the CA GOP has is that it's apparently made up of idiots too stupid to count to thirteen without taking off their shoes.

Pincher Martin -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 05:39:47 PM -- 2543 of 2775
"Whoever is winning at the moment will always seem to be invincible." -- George Orwell

Wouldn't it be sweet if people here actually read the article and took critical note of the important information and arguments contained therein instead of merely riding their favorite hobby-horses to death?

Amaxen writes:

...and the logic behind PM's article is why, for instance, the CA GOP doesn't consider old people as a potential voting block, what with their built in preference for government programs like SS, Medicaid, and Medicare. That's why the CA GOP tries to punch old people in the face every chance they get - they know that old people are a natural constituency for big government, so they are of course the enemy, to be antagonized and insulted at every opportunity.

That makes great sense for conservatives in the state. I don't know why I didn't think of that. We should now privilege Hispanic voters with the same set of government preferences at the state level that we have already granted old people at the federal level. It's not like this state doesn't have money to burn, and it's not as if we are struggling with the money we give to older people at the federal level.

Amaxen -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 05:52:29 PM -- 2544 of 2775
In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.

No, idiot. The problem is that you and the article are focused on why any particular group isn't a perfect republican constituency. If you hadn't noticed, republicans are in the *minority* in California. If you don't at least pick up some significant number of Hispanics, how can you hope to be anything *but* a permanent minority? Where do you plan on finding the votes? Or are you going to fall back on your fantasy of federal reconstruction somehow magically introducing a new master-race of republicans who will give you the votes?

Pincher Martin -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 06:25:19 PM -- 2545 of 2775
"Whoever is winning at the moment will always seem to be invincible." -- George Orwell

I swear to God you are biggest dumbass I've ever encountered.

If you hadn't noticed, republicans are in the *minority* in California.

Oh no, Amaxen, I haven't noticed that. Please tell me more.

If you don't at least pick up some significant number of Hispanics, how can you hope to be anything *but* a permanent minority?

You don't. Conservatism in California is over. It will never come back in my lifetime. Yes, a Republican or two will sneak into office, just as Republicans occasionally sneak into state office in places like Massachusetts or Hawaii. But those Republicans are not solid conservatives. They have names like Scott Brown and Linda Lingle. (In California, they are known as Arnold Schwarzenegger.) They run like Mitt Romney ran in the 90s, when he said he was a moderate and not a supporter of Reagan.

If the GOP in this state wants to pick up Hispanic voters, it must adopt a wide range of Democratic policies. And then it has to convince Hispanic voters that they can be trusted to run welfare programs for the benefit of Hispanics. After all, why should Hispanics switch parties when the Democrats already give them what the Republicans only promise to give them?

And if Republicans have to adopt the opposing party's platform on welfare programs to become a majority party in this state, then why bother becoming a majority? Who needs it? I don't. Especially if the local GOP heresy on welfare affects the party's stance on national issues, which of course it will.

This is what makes your promotion of local GOP heresy in the state so invidious, for it will inevitably and adversely affect national politics.

Where do you plan on finding the votes?

You don't. There are no votes to get. Never have been; never will be. You simply don't know this because you haven't look at the numbers, which leads you into egregious errors like claiming that Arnold won in 2003 because of Hispanic male voters.

Or are you going to fall back on your fantasy of federal reconstruction somehow magically introducing a new master-race of republicans who will give you the votes?

No, even with federal help, California will be at best a purple state with strong leanings to the blue side of the political ledger. But certainly if the feds push California in helpful ways, they can create more problems for the Democrats in this state.

jenrenton -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 08:35:13 PM -- 2546 of 2775
Snowflake mother

so they are of course the enemy, to be antagonized and insulted at every opportunity.

Did you read the part where the Hispanic pastor said that most Hispanics had never heard of or did not remember Prop 187 and that in his opinion they all voted Democratic because they feared that Republicans would cut off the flow of public money? Did you read that part? If you did read it, what did you think of the pastor's notion that most Hispanics want more and better government support and that this is their overriding political concern? Did you think he was wrong? If so, could you please cite some evidence that there exists a large group of Hispanic voters who prefer limited government and less government support waiting to be tapped?

By ignoring this basic issue, you ensure that your argument that California Republicans should court the Hispanic vote is a complete farce.

Pincher Martin -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 09:19:20 PM -- 2547 of 2775
"Whoever is winning at the moment will always seem to be invincible." -- George Orwell

If so, could you please cite some evidence that there exists a large group of Hispanic voters who prefer limited government and less government support waiting to be tapped?

I think Amaxen showed in his #2541 that he doesn't really believe small government ideology should concern Republicans anymore. If we can't cut back on welfare to old people, what right do we have to cut back on welfare to Hispanics?

Amaxen -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 10:52:07 PM -- 2548 of 2775
In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.

Sigh. Jen - for starters, do you believe that Hispanics are monolithic and that none of them own their own businesses? Furthermore, along the Hispanics being monolithic angle, do you think that Hispanics will vote for one party or the other but would never split their vote?

PM: > If we can't cut back on welfare to old people, what right do we have to cut back on welfare to Hispanics?

You don't have anything to say on policy. If you can't win elections there's absolutely no use in fantasizing about doing anything policy related. So you should confine yourself to whining about the old days.

CalGal -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 11:09:41 PM -- 2549 of 2775
I remember a time, back in the late 90s, when I thought nonsense like this mattered somewhat more than I do now. Now I see well-educated people yammering about the birth control choices of their daughters, or gay marriage, and I think they are morons.

Hispanics are monolithic and that none of them own their own businesses?

Not enough of them own businesses that are sufficiently profitable to override the value of government support to their not nearly as motivated family.

Amaxen -- Monday, February 13, 2012 -- 11:28:44 PM -- 2550 of 2775
In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.

"If the upward mobility of the impending Hispanic majority doesn’t improve, the state’s economic future is in peril."

Gee, I dunno, you could try something really radical, like doing some work among Hispanics to convince them that the GOP stands for them becoming owners of family businesses while the Dems stand for them becoming welfare peons. It would certainly have a better chance of giving the GOP a future in CA than PM's whine-about-the-old-days-and-play-piano-with-Edith strategy, but hey, whatever.

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The Perfect World >> Politics >> California Politics