Sunday, August 19, 2007

Term Limits, California Style

Once again, the California Legislature has failed to pass a budget on time. As nearly as I can tell this time (and I admit to some bias here), the Assembly Democrats passed a budget which actually reduced the deficit, sort of, and at the last minute the Republicans in the Senate held out for even more spending cuts and put the whole business on hold.

Frankly, at this point I don't care if those details are right or not. This happens every year, and I'm fed up with it. Every year, thousands of poor, ill, elderly people, and the businesses who serve same, have to sit and wonder when they'll get their payments, and if they'll be able to make it through until the Lege acts, because state payments to them are frozen while the legislators posture. People are even expecting this:
The state keeps humming along, however, largely because thousands of people, from hospital administrators to school officials in all parts of the state, have learned to prepare for California's chronically late budget deals. They know either to have cash on hand or which banks to turn to for short-term loans when budget negotiations bog down.
This idiocy is also why California has the second-worst state credit rating in the country; only Louisiana is worse.

These people are incompetent. An employee of a business with a bottom line, who repeatedly behaved like this, would be fired. And on top of this they have the brass-bound balls to ask us to extend term limits so they can spend more time in office. Well, I have another suggestion, and I'll bet it would pass if we could get it on the ballot:

No member of a legislature which failed to pass a budget on time would be eligible to run for state office again. Any state office, ever. This is what it'll take, folks; we've already tried suspending their pay while they argue about the budget, and it doesn't help, because it's "only a few weeks", and they all have the resources to ride it out, unlike the poor people dependent on state aid whom they routinely nail to the wall, every year, for political points.

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