The OC Register provided two very kind, but profoundly on point, letters to the editor in the pieces below. It’s refreshing to see a couple of independent voices explain the reasons for my victory so succinctly (see MOORLACH CAMPAIGN UPDATE — How I Won — March 30, 2015 — March 30, 2015). To the writers, I say, "Thank you."
BONUS: The Wall Street Journal, in its March 28th edition, printed an editorial piece that saw AB 91 in the same light that I did. My very first vote will be a memorable one, as I was the only one to oppose this legislation in both houses (see MOORLACH UPDATE — First Full Day — March 25, 2015 – March 26, 2015) . I’m providing the WSJ‘s piece below as a bonus, as it provided some encouragement for my position on this emergency bill. I was referred to the piece by a Brietbart.com column (see http://www.breitbart.com/california/2015/03/29/jerry-browns-drought-bill-spends-660-million-on-flood-control/).
Some have commented that I should be careful in this new role, advising me that I should go along to get along, in order to avoid putting a target on my back. But, I came here to speak truth to power. AB 91 ran contrary to many of my personal policies. I am opposed to creating more debt. I don’t appreciate disingenuousness. And, I’m not in the mood to grant pay raises when the balance sheet of California is in catastrophic shape. California’s liabilities, excluding unreported unfunded liabilities, exceed its assets (more on this in future UPDATES).
The Wall Street Journal got it. This is most helpful. Now I need to educate my colleagues on the Legislature’s fiscal stewardship responsibilities. Let’s hope that I can collect a few more votes, cumulatively, with similar bills in the future. Hopefully, over time it will build to a majority and we can prevent giving our state, and thus our children and grandchildren, more debt.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Moorlach victory based on principles
Neither the writers of the piece, nor the “experts” cited, mentioned exactly where Don Wagner’s 3-1 cash advantage came from [“How seat was won by Moorlach,” Front page, March 30]. The funds where substantially raised from public employee and public safety unions. Sure, the negative – “dirty” in this case – ads hurt Wagner. But John Moorlach’s name and reputation, and the voting public’s strong dislike for government unions, were the story here. You would never know that from the article.
Wagner comes across as a person who just wants to be elected to something. What kind of a Republican doesn’t care if he tarnishes his opponent’s reputation or becomes beholden to public employee unions?
Stephen E. Olear
I see you reported the political version of Moorlach’s victory from consultants desperate to place blame. The analysis does not give the voters any credit for a thoughtful ballot. It was not just name ID for Moorlach, it was principled name ID. Moorlach has always represented the voter, politics be damned. Wagner came across as a normal politician that would do anything to get elected, even taking money from the unions! Who would he represent if he got elected? Not the voter. Moorlach was a real vote for smaller government.
Review & Outlook
Jerry Brown’s Ark
How to turn ‘drought relief’ cash into a spending flood.
A NASA scientist this month warned that only a year of water is left in California reservoirs, and Sacramento regulators last week barred restaurants from serving water except upon request. So it makes perfect sense that Democrats want to earmark $660 million of “drought relief” money for . . . flood control.
Welcome to Sacramento where any crisis, real or invented, becomes a pretext to spend. Governor Jerry Brown on Friday signed a bill of his own design that appropriates $1.1 billion for “direct relief to workers and communities most impacted by these historic dry conditions.”
A Democratic senator provided a useful translation: “There’s something in this for every community that has a dramatic need about drought, and that’s all of us.”
Only about $40 million would provide emergency drinking water and food assistance for the hardest hit. Roughly $270 million would finance water-quality improvements that won’t be completed for years, if ever, due to green tape. But the labor unions are happy.
An additional $30 million would fund water-efficiency projects (i.e., green businesses) that reduce greenhouse gases. Another $4 million would help control "invasive aquatic plants" plus $18 million to protect fish and respond "to problems of human/wildlife conflict from animals seeking food and water." How much do state lawyers charge to resolve disputes between mountain lions and ranchers?
But most—$660 million in general-obligations bonds—is for flood control. According to Mr. Brown, climate change makes “extreme weather events” more likely. “All of a sudden, when you’re all focused on drought, you can get massive storms that flood through these channels and overflow and cause havoc,” he explained last week to dunderheads in the press too thick to understand this connection.
The real reason for the spending is that the bonds that voters approved in 2006 for flood protection expire next year. Now that the legislature has appropriated the money, the state has until 2020 to choose how to spend it. Maybe the Governor plans to build a giant ark to save wildlife when rising sea levels inundate the state.
Per Mr. Brown’s request, Democrats added an amendment to collective-bargaining agreements increasing pay for prison social workers and psychologists. So Democrats are grabbing credit for mitigating the drought while leaving farmers hanging out to roast. But there will be a check in every other interest group’s pot.
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