Saturday, January 02, 2010
So hungry we are for a winner in this city, the past couple of months have been wonderful watching people rally around the Bearcat's football team. If someone had told me ten years ago that teenage girls would be walking around town wearing a UC football sweat shirts, it would have been grounds for random drug testing.
With that in the back ground, to say last night was disappointing would be an understatement. The team truly looked rudder less without a true head coach at the helm. I wonder what Brian Kelly thought as he watched his team take an ass kicking.
In all the scenarios I had played out in my head, what happened last night would have been the worst case. It was uglier than my prom date.
Despite the beat down last night, next year's team promises to be even better. 1) the only contributors on defense will be back 2) Most of the offense will be back 3) The new coach won't totally ignore the defensive side of the ball 4) We get Oklahoma at home.
Regardless, the team provided this city with a reason to be proud for the first time in a long time.
Congratulations on a great season to Mardy, Tony and the guys. You'll always be remember for bringing pride to the city again.
PS On a related note. You remember the good old days when New Year's Day was the last of college football? Now we still have something like ten more games brought to you from the people who keep telling us that a D-1 playoff doesn't work because it will make the season longer.
Friday, January 01, 2010
The government's been good at seeing that everyone has "coverage"; Care? not so much.....
And now we're going to see it in practice...............
The Mayo Clinic, praised by President Barack Obama as a national model for efficient health care, will stop accepting Medicare patients as of tomorrow at one of its primary-care clinics in Arizona, saying the U.S. government pays too little.Welcome the the future of Obamacare
More than 3,000 patients eligible for Medicare, the government’s largest health-insurance program, will be forced to pay cash if they want to continue seeing their doctors at a Mayo family clinic in Glendale, northwest of Phoenix, said Michael Yardley, a Mayo spokesman. The decision, which Yardley called a two-year pilot project, won’t affect other Mayo facilities in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota.
Obama in June cited the nonprofit Rochester, Minnesota-based Mayo Clinic and the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio for offering “the highest quality care at costs well below the national norm.” Mayo’s move to drop Medicare patients may be copied by family doctors, some of whom have stopped accepting new patients from the program, said Lori Heim, president of the American Academy of Family Physicians, in a telephone interview yesterday.
“Many physicians have said, ‘I simply cannot afford to keep taking care of Medicare patients,’” said Heim, a family doctor who practices in Laurinburg, North Carolina. “If you truly know your business costs and you are losing money, it doesn’t make sense to do more of it.”
Last year, I went with getting my concealed carry permit and start target shooting. Unfortunately, getting enough ammo to do any substantial shooting proved to be difficult so last year's was kind of a bust.
In other years, I've done, in no particular order, train and run in a marathon, ball room dancing, taking saxophone lessons, this blog, reading and studying the entire Bible, volunteering, etc....
After two different episodes where I was told my blood pressure was through the roof, I went and got a full physical a couple of weeks ago.
Outside of needing to lose weight, everything checked out OK; including the blood pressure. Never the less, I decided to make this year about my diet. I eat a lot of crap; processed foods, trans fats, high fructose corn syrup, aspartame, fried foods, etc. My biggest enemy is processed bleached flour.
If you have ever noticed, every culture has a recipe for some kind of bread. It could be made out of wheat, corn, rice, potatoes and I've always wondered why. I believe the reason is that it is a cheap fuel source.
Given that we all live comparative sedentary lives to our ancestors, isn't eating bread the equivalent to putting jet fuel in a Toyota?
So this year, I'm going to concentrate on what I choose to fuel my body with. My intention to eat foods as God put them on earth and avoid processed crap where I can. Call it the God Diet.
I'll give periodic updates to what I find.
None the less, I'm pretty sure my blood pressure will drop when Obama's out of office.
I usually don't put celebrities in this feature because we pretty much already know how most celebrities would vote.
But I'll make an exception to Gilbert Arenas and his Washington Wizards teammate, Javaris Crittendon......
Yup, the Gilbert Arenas gun in his locker story just got a whole lot more interesting, people. For Wizards' fans it just a whole lot more depressing. According to multiple sources, including that minstrel of good cheer, Peter Vescey, Gilbert Arenas and back-up guard Javaris Crittenton pulled guns on one another over a gambling debt on Christmas Eve following practice.
Allegedly, Crittenton was incensed that Arenas welshed on a bet and got in Gilbert's face, saying "I'm not your punk!" Arenas, apparently feeling otherwise, then pulled an unloaded pistol on Crittenton. Crittenton grabbed his own gun and the standoff ensued. It is not clear what happened at this point but obviously (and thankfully) no one was shot.
We don't know what teammates saw the dispute but you have to wonder what Fabricio Oberto was thinking. I am guessing it was something like, "I used to play with Tim Duncan...I used to play with Tim Duncan...I used to play with Tim Duncan...please don't let me get shot!"
These guys are obviously law abiding, concealed carry permit holders so I'm thinking that November, 2009 they pulled the chain for John McCain.
I also know that me and my Redville, republican, redneck, gun toting, buddies usually spend Christmas Eve playing chicken shooting each other.
What say you?
For the month of December the average high temperature was 40.23 degrees versus an historical high of 42.71. The average low was 26.32 versus an historical average of 26.39.
The gives the cooling crowd a 13-11 victory. The second straight year cooling won the challenge.
I will keep the challenge going for the next year since I'm still waiting for one of the sex offenders from Plunderbong to "put their money where their mouth is".
A few notes regarding the challenge.
1) I'm not a global warming scientist. As a result, I'm making my source available to the public for checking. I used the Weather Underground for the CVG airport. Feel free to double check my figures.
2) Once again, I could gloat about the results. However, I get that the world's climate is more a result of solar radiation than anything man can do. The results are as random as a coin flip. However, if you are a branch Gorvidian, how do you reconcile the fact that it keeps getting cooler when you espouse warming.
3) If you think my scoring system is suspect just note that the average high temperature for the year was 63 degrees versus an average historical high of 64.1. The average low 44.5 v. 44.4. In addition, I compared the numbers for 2009/2008 and they came up high 63/63.8; cool 44.5/43.8. The last I checked, The Greater Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky airport is part of the globe. You Branch Gorevidians keep saying that it's getting warmer but the number certainly don't reflect that now does it?
So which one of you Branch Gorevidians are willing to take me up on the challenge. If you believe it's warming, wouldn't it be great to take some money from the incredible Gordon Gekko? I'll make a deal with you. We'll put up $100 using any location on the weather underground and the loser funds a reforestation project in the Amazon. It's all good.
Unless, of course, you really don't believe the earth is getting warmer.
Tonight's the conclusion of what I hope is a perfect football season for the 'Cats.
Unfortunately, they're going to have to do against probably their worst match up off all the BCS bowl teams.
Given the 'cats inability to stop the run and Tim Tebow's ability to humiliate defenses with the run, this could be ugly. But then again, I thought they've had lot's of bad run match ups and have managed to pull them out.
I'll be at the Kenwood Willie's tonight watching the festivities.
Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Josh Rogin has the story at the Cable:
Jide Zeitlin, the Obama administration's nominee to be America's point man for financial reform at the United Nations, has withdrawn himself from consideration for the job, an administration official tells The Cable.
Zeitlin, a former Goldman Sachs executive and telecom entrepreneur, had faced criticism for his business dealings related to Indian contractors and was also accused of identity fraud for an incident in which he admitted to sending an email to investors masked as coming from one of his competitors. Zeitlin testified before Congress that the email was a prank.
Rogin also hints at the the possibility that there is another scandal here that isn't financial:
But concerns about his nomination grew as rumors swirled around Washington and New York that Zeitlin was engaged in other activities that called into question his overall character and also may have included elements of identity fraud.
Specifically, one woman contacted several government offices and multiple news outlets, including The Cable, with allegations that Zeitlin had used deception to lure her into what eventually she claims was a romantic relationship. Those allegations could not be independently confirmed by The Cable. The administration official declined to comment as to whether they had been investigated as part of Zeitlin's vetting process or afterwards.
Here's a news flash from Planet Obvious: Chris Warren, Cleveland's regional development chief, says wasting tax dollars to help folks buy homes they can't afford is not smart policy. He needs to make sure it doesn't continue to be city policy.
Cleveland's role in aiding and abetting its very own foreclose crisis, one of the worst in the country, was highlighted by Plain Dealer reporter Mark Gillispie on Sunday. His investigation into Cleveland's Afford-A-Home program revealed a shameful lack of oversight.
The city provided at-risk buyers with down-payment loans of up to $20,000 through the federally funded program -- without the obvious caveat of ensuring that they could continue to make mortgage payments.
As a result, nearly half of the 584 homes sold between 2000 and 2007 by the top three firms using these loans to entice buyers have gone into foreclosure. Among the recipients: A homeless woman living in a car with her children. Contrite city officials acknowledge they were asleep at the wheel as millions of taxpayer dollars were lost in the firestorm of sheriff's sales that followed. They've promised to clamp down immediately on how they qualify buyers.
Yet city officials did little, until this newspaper's investigation uncovered the problems, to halt these practices or to provide adequate oversight of the private rehabbers that used the loans to sell homes.
Officials need to explain such an appalling lack of accountability.
They don't need to explain anything. They're democrats in government. That should about explain it all.
What's so "progressive" about rampant foreclosures?
I don't know why
You call some place Paradise
Kiss it Goodbye
So the state of California is attempting to deal with 60 to 80 billion in budget deficits so what does the largely democratic congressional representation do for the state. Pass health care of course which will add billions of additional medicaid burdens on a state already tinkering on bankruptcy.
So how does one Diane Feinstein manage such trivialities.........
The problem is that the health care bill would include more people in the Medicaid program, which is partially funded by the state.
Governor Schwarzenegger says that’ll cost California an extra 3 billion dollars a year.
Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein says she’s aware of the problem. "I’ve seen the Governor’s numbers," she says, "and it’s a worst case scenario. So hopefully, that’s not going to happen and we have some time to deal with it."
Too bad the California "progressives" are so easy. They could have worked a deal out like Ben Nelson.
Someone at The New Republic has picked up on the continued presidential trend..........
Excuse me, I have a tee time to make.
It’s been a tough first year for President Obama, as critics throughout the body politic bemoan that Mr. Change-We-Can-Believe-In is looking more and more like Mr. Politics-As-Usual. With the coming new year, however, POTUS has a prime opportunity to regroup, reload, and revamp his image. He could start by ditching golf.
Seriously. Its venerable White House history notwithstanding, golf is a dubious pastime for any decent, sane person, much less for this particular president. Why would a leader vowing to shake up Washington--to alter the very nature of politics--sell his soul to a leisure activity that screams stodgy, hyperconventional Old Guard?
There are signs that Obama has been nursing a creeping golf addiction for some time now. He took up the game a little more than a decade ago as a newbie state senator hoping to bond with more rural, conservative colleagues. Next thing you know, he was hooked--playing for cash, fretting over his form, and goading staffers to cut out of work early for a quick round.
During the 2008 race, Obama’s golf outings drew less notice than his battles on the hard court. But, now that he’s firmly ensconced in the Oval Office, the sticks have come out of the closet as Obama constantly looks to squeeze in a few holes: on Father’s Day, during the family’s summer holiday on the Vineyard, immediately upon touching down from his June trip to Europe. It is often noted that this president hit the links more frequently in his first nine months than the reared-on-golf George W. did in his first two years (after which W. conspicuously swore off the game out of respect for the troops). Currently ranked eighth on Golf Digest’s list of presidential golfers (sandwiched between Clinton and Reagan), Obama seems intent on moving up the ladder--despite reports that he’s something of a duffer.
Tuesday, December 29, 2009
There is a sense of déjà vu in the Obama administration’s response to the attempted terrorist attack on Christmas Day. A by-now familiar pattern has been established for dealing with unexpected problems.
First, White House aides downplay the notion that something may have gone wrong on their part. While staying out of the spotlight, the president conveys his efforts to address the situation and his feelings about it through administration officials. After a few days, the White House concedes on the issue, and perhaps Barack Obama even steps out to address it.
That same scenario unfolded over the summer, when Obama said Sgt. James Crowley, a white Cambridge, Mass., police officer, “acted stupidly” when he arrested Henry Louis Gates Jr., a black Harvard professor, in his own home. It happened in March when the public was outraged over AIG dishing out hefty bonuses. More recently the public witnessed the dynamic after a security breach at President Barack Obama’s first state dinner.But the fact that the issue now is a terrorist incident — albeit an unsuccessful one — makes the stakes much higher, and the White House’s usual approach more questionable. That this test of his leadership comes while he’s on vacation in tropical Hawaii further complicates things.
Journalist ethics? That's a laugher.
NBC’s interview with David Goldman has drawn a scathing review from the Society of Professional Journalists’ Ethics Committee.
The panel says it’s “appalled” because NBC News chartered a plane for Goldman and his son, Sean, to fly from Brazil to the United States. They were reunited after a five-year custody battle, and they arrived in Orlando on Christmas Eve. In paying for the plane, NBC News engaged in “checkbook journalism,” the Ethics Committee says.
The journalists’ group has a code of ethics that urges reporters to refrain from bidding for news.
“The public could rightly assume that NBC News bought exclusive interviews and images, as well as the family’s loyalty, with an extravagant gift,” Ethics Committee Chairman Andy Schotz said.
In a statement, NBC News said: “The Goldmans were invited on a jet NBC News chartered to fly home to the U.S. on Thursday, December 24. NBC News has followed this story since the Goldmans’ story first ran on Dateline nearly one year ago — David Goldman since has appeared on Today seventeen times. NBC News has not and will not pay for an interview.”
Hey did you hear about the iconic African-American guy who plays golf, and whose relationship with the public is in a free-fall lately?
No, as a matter of fact I'm not talking about Tiger Woods.
You know, I've really been trying not to write an article every other week about all the things I don't like about Barack Obama.
But the little prick is making it very hard.
Like any good progressive, I've gone from admiration to hope to disappointment to anger when it comes to this president. Now I'm fast getting to rage.
How much rage? I find myself thinking that the thing I want most from the 2010 elections is for his party to get absolutely clobbered, even if that means a repeat of 1994. And that what I most want from 2012 is for him to be utterly humiliated, even if that means President Palin at the helm. That much rage.
Did this clown really say on national television that "I did not run for office to be helping out a bunch of you know, fat cat bankers on Wall Street"?!?!
Really, Barack? So, like, my question is: Then why the hell did you help out a bunch of fat cat bankers on Wall Street?!?! Why the hell did you surround yourself with nothing but Robert Rubin proteges in all the key economic positions in your government? Why did you allow them to open a Washington branch of Goldman Sachs in the West Wing? Why have your policies been tailored to helping Wall Street bankers, rather than the other 300 million of us, who just happen to be suffering badly right now?
Read the rest of this panty bunching hysteria here.
At ThreatsWatch.org, Steve Schippert and Clyde Middleton have dug up the bizarre and unsettling issuance of an executive order recently signed by President Barack Obama. Executive Order — Amending Executive Order 12425, signed December 16 and released a day later, grants the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) rights on American soil that place it beyond the reach of our own law enforcement agencies, such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
Schippert and Middleton note that Obama’s order removes protections placed upon INTERPOL by President Reagan in 1983. Obama’s order gives the group the authority to avoid Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests — which means this foreign law enforcement organization can operate free of an important safeguard against governmental abuse. “Property and assets,” including the organization’s records, cannot be searched or seized. Their physical locations and records are now immune from U.S. legal or investigative authorities.
If the president of the United States has an aboveboard reason for making a foreign law enforcement agency exempt from American laws on American soil, it wasn’t shared by the White House.
Andy McCarthy, former assistant United States attorney for the Southern District of New York and senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, notes at National Review that the limitations that Obama removed are “what prevents law-enforcement and its controlling government authority from becoming tyrannical.”
A paragraph later, McCarthy describes Obama’s actions in the starkest of terms:
This international police force (whose U.S. headquarters is in the Justice Department in Washington) will be unrestrained by the U.S. Constitution and American law while it operates in the United States and affects both Americans and American interests outside the United States.
Some bloggers covering this story are noting that the law enforcement agency to which Obama has extended such extraordinary powers to has had a dismal past.
If I go to Delaware (where there is no sales tax) and buy a computer, I don't pay any Delaware sales tax but I owe Ohio use tax since I am a resident of Ohio. That use tax is the equivalent of Ohio sales tax.
In addition, if I buy a computer from a Kentucky company via the internet, they are not required to collect Ohio sales tax unless they have "nexis" in Ohio (essentially a business presence of some kind).
As a result, companies like Amazon save people sales tax dollars provided their state has no Amazon warehouses or other business locations within the state.
To make sales tax matters even more ridiculous, states have determined that the tax be levied where service/product is delivered. So for a Cincinnati local landscaper who performs services in Hamilton, Clermont, Warren and Butler counties, they are required to collect sales tax for each of those counties.
If you have an internet company in Ohio, you'd be required to collect the sales tax for over 90 different taxing districts within the state, a logistical nightmare.
So for a company like Amazon, it behooves them to not deal with the over 8000 different taxing districts throughout the country.
Well, people like the Times don't like that............
BEFORE settling on Seattle as the home of Amazon.com, the founder, Jeff Bezos, considered placing the company on an Indian reservation near San Francisco. “This way, we could have access to talent without all the tax consequences,” he said in a 1996 interview with Fast Company.
The reservation couldn’t be used as a sales-tax haven, after all, Mr. Bezos said he learned, so he had to look elsewhere. Offering prices free of sales tax to customers in California, the most populous state, would be possible only if the company were placed elsewhere. “You have to charge sales tax to customers who live in any state where you have a business presence,” he said then.
Today, Amazon collects sales tax in only five states, which gives it a continuing advantage over companies who do collect them in all or most states. Competitors aren’t the only ones hurt by Amazon’s stance on sales taxes: it also means the loss of considerable revenue to states and localities that badly need it.
The thing that makes this so ridiculous is that all this could be averted if the states agreed on one simple principle; you collect the sales tax from where the sales originates. As a result, Amazon would be forced to at least charge the 8.5% Washington sales tax from customers.
But that doesn't work for states. Why? because it would create a natural advantage for states like Delaware who have no sales tax and we all know how governments love competition.
It’s a favorite government trick to announce bad news on a Friday afternoon, so it appears in Saturday’s paper, the least likely edition to be read. By Sunday and Monday, it’s old news. The Obama Treasury just went one better, announcing on Christmas Eve that they were uncapping the amount they believe will have to be invested in Fannie and Freddie. The Bush Treasury first estimated the government-sponsored enterprises’ (GSEs) losses at $100 billion each. The Obama administration, which has been using the GSEs to stabilize the housing market by reducing their underwriting standards, upped the ante to $200 billion each. Now the administration has thrown in the towel completely, and dropped a large lump of coal in each taxpayer’s stocking—it won’t even try to estimate the total losses of Fannie and Freddie.Anyone have a golf tee?
This is the culmination of an unprecedented policy disaster, inflicted on the American taxpayer by congressional supporters of Fannie and Freddie who refused over many years to approve new and tougher regulations for the two GSEs. Now that many of these folks are in charge of the House and Senate committees that deal with financial reform, they have suddenly found new respect for regulation and are trying to apply it to the entire financial system. Perhaps the American taxpayers, acting as voters in 2010, will decide that one disaster per career is all they should be allowed.
It's getting to the point where the twin news stories more or less write themselves. No sooner is the fanatical and homicidal Muslim arrested than it turns out that he (it won't be long until it is also she) has been known to the authorities for a long time. But somehow the watch list, the tipoff, the many worried reports from colleagues and relatives, the placing of the name on a "central repository of information" don't prevent the suspect from boarding a plane, changing planes, or bringing whatever he cares to bring onto a plane. This is now a tradition that stretches back to several of the murderers who boarded civilian aircraft on Sept. 11, 2001, having called attention to themselves by either a) being on watch lists already or b) weird behavior at heartland American flight schools. They didn't even bother to change their names.More....
So that's now more or less the routine for the guilty. (I am not making any presumption of innocence concerning Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab.) But flick your eye across the page, or down it, and you will instantly see a different imperative for the innocent. "New Restrictions Quickly Added for Travelers," reads the inevitable headline just below the report on the notoriety of Abdulmutallab, whose own father had been sufficiently alarmed to report his son to the U.S. Embassy in Abuja, Nigeria, some time ago. (By the way, I make a safe prediction: Nobody in that embassy or anywhere else in our national security system will lose his or her job as a consequence of this most recent disgrace.)
In my boyhood, there were signs on English buses that declared, in bold letters, "No Spitting." At a tender age, I was able to work out that most people don't need to be told this, while those who do feel a desire to expectorate on public transport will require more discouragement than a mere sign. But I'd be wasting my time pointing this out to our majestic and sleepless protectors, who now boldly propose to prevent airline passengers from getting out of their seats for the last hour of any flight. Abdulmutallab made his bid in the last hour of his flight, after all. Yes, that ought to do it. It's also incredibly, nay, almost diabolically clever of our guardians to let it be known what the precise time limit will be. Oh, and by the way, any passenger courageous or resourceful enough to stand up and fight back will also have broken the brave new law.
As a follow up, she also announced that 80 year old women will be subject to full cavity searches to prevent additional attacks.
Monday, December 28, 2009
It’s much more likely not to happen than to happen but the clock is ticking for the death of Gary, Indiana. State law imposes property tax caps on all local governments far below the level Gary has grown accustomed to. Gary finances 80% of its $80M+ general fund operations through the use of property taxes. A vote on including the tax caps in Indiana’s Constitution is widely expected in 2010.
Gary has appealed and gotten special exemptions at a level unique in the state to maintain higher taxes while undergoing adjustments to bring government down to a size that can survive on anticipated revenue. Absent that relief, Gary’s 2010 property tax receipts would drop from a projected 62.9M to 28.1M.
As a condition of the transitional relief, a financial monitor was required for Gary and its related municipal districts (sanitary, storm water, public transport corp, and airport authority). The transition ends in 2012. If Gary has not adjusted sufficiently that it can handle somewhere between 20-30M less in revenue by that time, the 5th largest city in Indiana will be forced to declare bankruptcy.
Complicating matters are at least $34M in outstanding debts on top of its impending structural deficit. The term at least is used advisedly because unlike most cities, and most private organizations of its size and complexity, Gary uses a cash based accounting system. Future obligations that have not been presented for payment are not accounted for at all in a cash based system. The city government literally doesn’t have the capacity to accurately know what it owes. Because of the lack of information the financial monitor is forced to guess at some basic information.
The current Gary financial monitor’s report makes for frightening reading. Property tax revenue is scheduled to drop 50%+. There is no likelihood of a local income tax and Indiana does not share its sales tax revenue with local government. One of two casinos operating in Gary has entered bankruptcy and even before then a dispute with the casino operators disrupted payments to Gary. The bad news keeps on rolling for 265 pages.
What's so "progressive" about a city who can't even support a casino?
- They look for and find opportunities where others see nothing.
- They find a lesson while others only see a problem.
- They are solution focused.
- They consciously and methodically create their own success, while others hope success will find them.
- They are fearful like everyone else, but they are not controlled or limited by fear.
- They ask the right questions – the ones which put them in a productive, creative, positive mindset and emotional state.
- They rarely complain (waste of energy). All complaining does is put the complainer in a negative and unproductive state.
- They don’t blame (what’s the point?). They take complete responsibility for their actions and outcomes (or lack thereof).
- While they are not necessarily more talented than the majority, they always find a way to maximize their potential. They get more out of themselves. They use what they have more effectively.
- They are busy, productive and proactive. While most are laying on the couch, planning, over-thinking, sitting on their hands and generally going around in circles, they are out there getting the job done.
Just a wild guess but I'm thinking the more of these you answer no to, the more likely you voted for Barry and Co.
But in the case of health care, republicans did show up for a change.
How do I know? I read this piece defending Max Baucus's drunken tirade on the house floor where the writer laid out this claim.........
Now, if you can read that, and you can, then you have to agree Baucus was not "slurring" or "drunk" , or "slobbering" when he was speaking. Otherwise he could not have got off such a great blast against Wicker.
And Conservatives know it.
Rather, Baucus was just plain tired and really angry. The product of long hours of debate against Republicans who just don't play fair at all.
Baucus made a great point. People like Maine's Republican Senator Olympia Snowe were really interested in passing health care reform, but were relentlessly pressured into not doing so. Personally, I think they're on the wrong side of history.
The place to be
They watched the hazy sun
Sinking in the sea............
The "ought" decade was one promise after another turned into trauma for California. It began with a popular Democratic governor, judging from the voter majority that put him in office. But his popularity plummeted in tandem with the state's nosediving finances. The decade ends with a Republican governor who, at first, was every bit as popular, judging from the wide voter margin that elected him. His popularity and the state's finances likewise hit bottom. The chief distinction between Democrat Gray Davis and Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger may be that the former was recalled from office, and the latter will be permitted to finish his term next year. Perhaps Schwarzenegger was spared because voters remember the lousy results of the previous recall.
California's bipartisan gubernatorial failures were uncomfortably similar. Profligate spending, overextended borrowing and looming deficits were Davis' undoing. Schwarzenegger promised to "blow up the boxes" and cut up the credit cards, but ended up spending and borrowing on a par with, and sinking every bit as deep in debt, as Davis. This downward trajectory means Californians are among the highest-taxed, most over-regulated and poorly served citizens in the 50 states.
Yet to hear the pols tell it, it's those selfish voting bastards who refuse to accept more tax increases.
A little too much holiday cheer?