“Government Doesn’t Have The Resources To Stop It”

This post originally appeared at Campaign for America’s Future (CAF) at their Blog for OurFuture. I am a Fellow with CAF.

People want the President to exert leadership to turn things around.

The oil leak. Unemployment. Credit card scams. Foreclosures. Predatory corporations. Environmental destruction. Global warming. Roads and bridges crumbling. Incomes stagnant. Schools getting worse. Companies moving overseas. Problem after problem.

People want to know, “Why doesn’t the government push BP aside and take over?” The answer is, “Government doesn’t have the resources to stop it.”

People want to know why the government can’t do more to help unemployed people, help with health care, help provide good educations, help with college, maintain the infrastructure, and all the other things that government does.

The answer, these days, is always, “Government doesn’t have the resources.” And that, in a nutshell, was exactly the plan.

We, the People no longer have the resources to solve our problems. We now must depend on and defer to the corporations and the wealthy few to make the important decisions and get things done instead of being able to decide and do on our own.

This is the legacy of 30 years of conservatism. They called it “starving the beast.” Reagan called it “cutting their allowance.” President Bush, told that his policies had turned the country back to massive deficits, said this was, “Incredibly positive news” because it will create “a fiscal straitjacket for Congress.” He came into office with a $236 billion surplus. His last budget left us with a $1.4 trillion deficit. “Incredibly positive news.”

They disemboweled the regulatory agencies. They “privatized” government functions and resources, letting a well-connected few profit at the expense of the rest of us.

The Reagan deficit plan was right there for everyone to see: 

    Step 1: Cut taxes to “cut the allowance” of government so that it can’t function on the side of We, the People. Intentionally force the government into greater and greater debt.

    Step 2: Use the debt as a reason to cut the things government does for We, the People. When the resulting deficits pile up scare people that the government is “going bankrupt” so they’ll let you sell off the people’s assets and “privatize” the functions of government. Of course, insist that putting taxes back where they were will “harm the economy.”

    Step 3: Blame liberals for the disastrous effects of spending cutbacks.

And here we are. Every time you hear someone say that we have to fight the deficit instead of getting things done that We, the People need done you are witnessing The Plan in action.

And now, government doesn’t have the resources to stop it.

Deceptive Mailer: Vote For Greener California

There is a mailer reaching California’s voters titled Vote for a Greener California, with a label that says “Californians Vote Green.”

This mailer is deceptive.  It says to vote for Proposition 16, the “PGE Initiative.”  This is a paid endorsement, and is designed to trick people into thinking there is an environmental reason to vote for a proposition that actually keeps people from being able to buy green energy. The California Secretary of State’s website shows that PGE paid $40,000 to be part of this mailer:  (While you’re there, look how much they paid for “Petition Circulating.”)


Please do not be fooled by this mailer.  Speak Out California recommends voting no on Proposition 16.  It is a proposition that enforces PG&E’s monopoly if it passes. 
Others have noticed this mailer.  At Calitics see Warning: Fraudulent(?) Mailer, and Prop. 16, Slate Mailers, and Voting ‘Green’ at Infospigot.

Speak Out California June 2010 Endorsements And Voter Guide

Speak Out California’s positions on the ballot propositions for the June election are as follows:
Proposition 13, the Earthquake Retrofit Property Tax initiative: No position.
Proposition 14, the “Kill the Parties Initiative”: NO
Proposition 15, the “End Corporate Financed Elections Initiative”: YES
Proposition 16, the “PGE Initiative”: NO
Proposition 17, the “Mercury Insurance Initiative”: NO
Voter Guide:

In keeping with Speak Out California’s long-standing tradition, we’re again providing progressive voters with a one-stop guide to the upcoming election. We believe it is important to cut through all the hype and excessive corporate money being spent to mislead and thus persuade our voters on what each of these measures does or doesn’t do.
Watch, in particular, for Props 16 and 17 — they are each funded by billion-dollar corporations to pad their own pockets, to the detriment of the people. Prop 16 is solely financed by PG&E to keep competition, especially alternative energy companies, from challenging their monopoly of local energy service. They call it “the right to vote” but it’s anything but. 
Proposition 17 is a ploy by Mercury Insurance to be able to raise rates. They’ve single-handedly funded this measure — from signature gathering to commercials claiming they’re going to lower rates, when what they are really going to do is raise them on the least able to pay, such as people who miss a payment.
Feel free to share the information with your friends. OR better yet, please click here to join us and continue receiving progressive news and analysis from a reliable and independent source.

The Speak Out California June 2010 primary election printable voter guide can be downloaded by clicking this link.
Vote Progressive June 8!
(Note, click the name of each org at the top of the chart below to go to their endorsement page.)

California Needs Fairness Doctrine

Roy Ulrich of the California Tax Reform Association and Richard Holober of the Consumer Federation of California have written an important op-ed on the need to restore the Fairness Doctrine. They argue that the unlimited funds that big corporations can throw at California’s ballot initiatives — props 16 (the “PGE Initiative”) and 17 (the “Mercury Insurance Initiative”) in particular — are stifling the ability of opponents of these measures to be heard.
From their op-ed,titled California Needs The FCC To Restore The Fairness Doctrine,

Neither was able to get the legislature to do their bidding, so they hired political consultants, paid millions of dollars to gather signatures, and proceeded to put these self-serving measures on the ballot. Now, they are flooding the airwaves with well-crafted bunk.
… a core principle of the First Amendment’s guarantee of free speech is the ventilation and airing of opposing points of view.
There can be little doubt that the effect of broadcasters’ refusal to provide under-funded campaigns free response time since the repeal of the Fairness Doctrine for ballot measures in 1992 has been to increase the amount of one-sided information voters receive before entering the voting booth. This is hardly the kind of open and free debate the framers of our Constitution had in mind when they wrote the First Amendment.

It is time to restore the Fairness Doctrine so the non-wealthy can reach the public too.