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How do you feel?

Also, what is the left doing to MAKE Democrats do it this time? The left needs to organize and build their infrastructures from the bottom up, starting with local elections AND the Democratic state legislatures.

Your plans? Any thoughts?

Jerry Brown wants to continue to push for High Speed Rail completion, significant tax code reform (and allow tax revenue increases through that), and other good priorities. Democrats are open to changing fees into broader taxes, according to the senate majority leader of the California Senate. They also are willing to change the Constitution for the better.

We need to hold their feet to the fire for those priorities and also for finally getting Medicare-for-all with the funding mechanism.

The Democratic legislature ALMOST passed Medicare-for-all with the funding mechanism to be accepted by the people last legislative session. Unfortunately, in the final floor vote in the senate, the few insurance company leech democrats had enough sway to kill it. It hurt being so close.

The super majorities now blunt those Democrats. With better organizing and pressure from the left this time, California has got this IMO.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Two things that need to happen in California... (11+ / 0-)

    ... (but probably won't):

    1. Repeal "Law-by-Proposition." It's sloppy and too often rewards deep-pocketed corporate interests.

    2. Repeal Proposition 13 which has crushed infrastructure and local school funding.

    •  why do you say that? (0+ / 0-)

      Prop 13 is 2/3 majority tax increases isn't it?

      I am sure Democrats want to make it easier to raise taxes.

      •  sreeizzle - all would need voter approval (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        PatriciaVa, Neuroptimalian, nextstep

        Can't change any part of Prop 13 without voter approval. There have been several ballot attempts to lower the hurdle from 2/3, including one to 55% and all have failed.

        "let's talk about that"

        by VClib on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 03:47:56 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I don't think so (0+ / 0-)

          They were all constitutional amendments.

          It takes 2/3 majority to change the constitution through legal means - as opposed to referendum.

          I believe that 2/3 of the houses can vote to amend the constitution to alter or remove the bits that were referendum-ed in. A constitutional clause is a clause regardless of whether it was put in through legal means or by referendum.

          I think the state houses have it in their power to remove (bad idea, I think) or alter (good idea - drop the corporations) parts of Prop 13.

          I am progressive. I am liberal. I make no apologies. - Kos

          My political compass: - 8.38,-6.97

          by pucklady on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 04:21:01 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  pucklady - not in California (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            FG, Odysseus

            the legislature and governor, acting on their own, cannot change the California Constitution. What the legislature can do, by supermajority, is place constitutional amendments on the ballot without the very expensive, and time consuming, process of obtaining the required number of signatures.

            "let's talk about that"

            by VClib on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 05:14:04 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Why not put all tax increases to a vote? (0+ / 0-)

        Some will get thumbs up, other will fail.

        One thing is clear.

        After the voters rejected a bid to hike the cigarette tax by one dollar a pack, despite an 82% non-smoking electorate, the California voter will not support regressive taxation.

        Learn about Centrist Economics, learn about Robert Rubin's Hamilton Project.

        by PatriciaVa on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 04:02:37 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  No, I would not support law-by-prop. There are (0+ / 0-)

      some very good reasons for doing this. In a word, republicans.

      I realize this system is very imperfect, but I couldn't support its repeal.

      202-224-3121 to Congress in D.C. USE it! You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to discourage them. "We're not perfect, but they're nuts."--Barney Frank 01/02/2012

      by cany on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 03:41:36 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Looking in my crystal ball, (0+ / 0-)

      I don't see Prop 13 being overturned at first. If anything, it may be gutted. I have a hunch that's exactly what Brown is on his way to doing.

      Speaking of funding for public infrastructures, Prop 30 heartened me greatly, and not because its goals (stemming further, massive cuts to education) are so ambitious. What's ambitious about Prop 30, in the current political climate, is its provision for an old-style PROGRESSIVE tax. Prop 30 will actually enact a tax on top earners, people who may whine, but who can afford it. (It'll be good for 'em :)

      Now, Prop 13 was passed in the 1970s to solve an actual problem. We need a full understanding of what that problem was, before we understand why Prop 13 was a bad fix. Until that understanding is common knowledge, and is fully is incorporated rhetorically, we can't make headway on legislative milestones. So our first victories regarding Prop 13's legacy, have to be rhetorical.

      It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

      by karmsy on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 03:46:34 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  The "problem" that Prop 13 was to solve (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        karmsy, sreeizzle2012, Simplify

        was Jerry Brown. The paleocons of Orange County and Palm Springs were terrified that Brown would implement a successful progressive agenda and they desperately wanted to keep control of the state even though they were only able to hold 35% of the Assembly seats so Prop 13 made the 2/3 rule on anything that impacted taxes.
        As a result, the gridlock they were able to cause took California from first in the nation to nearly last on everything from road surfaces to quality of public education (and they are so thankful that Louisiana and Mississippi are there to keep them from being dead last).
        Prop13 rolled back property taxes and held them there while the value of real estate in CA went through the roof.  Sounds good right?
        Property taxes were allowed to rise only when a property changed hands, so people who sold one house and bought another were paying a higher mil rate than their next door neighbor who hadn't moved.
        But the real winners in this were the corporations that own property because they don't turn over.
        They're still paying 1978 tax rates on large chunks of California real estate.
        The disparities only got more glaring over time.
        Meanwhile, the state was strangled. The UC system was priced out of reach for most kids, the public schools system, once the best in the nation, fell through the floor at the same time that the number of students doubled. New infrastructure development stopped and keeping up the maintenance on the standing structure was neglected. By 1985, the freeways were pothole nightmares (and that's more than just uncomfortable on a motorcycle).
        Howard Jarvis and Paul Gann, the bas+ards that wrote and promoted Prop 13, were the ideological parents of Greeedheads like Grover Norquist and they gave us a preview of what TeaBagger Nation would look like. Along with the white-patent-leather-shoes-and-matching-belt set that held just over 1/3 of the Assembly, they were practically the blueprint for the current GOP.
        Their scorched earth, obstructionary, anti-democratic putsch destroyed what was once the Golden State. And their national progeny is busily doing the same to the Nation as a whole.

        If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

        by CwV on Wed Nov 28, 2012 at 07:08:32 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Interesting analysis, thanks. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          A short time after Prop 13 went through in California, nationally, we saw the Reagan Revolution. It's informed everything in the 3+ decades since, from domestic social priorities, to international policy, to political talking points of every kind.

          Now, it's waning. We are witnessing its slide into irrelevance. California is pointing the way.

          It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

          by karmsy on Wed Nov 28, 2012 at 08:49:23 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  Bob - all would require voter approval (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PatriciaVa, Neuroptimalian

      They are part of the CA Constitution.

      "let's talk about that"

      by VClib on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 03:48:38 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Repeal Prop 13 for commercial properties (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FG, jakedog42, killjoy

      only.  There are still elderly people who could not afford to live in their homes if it were repealed for residential property.

      •  and yet somehow elderly people live in the other (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        49 states that don't have prop 13 restrictions on property tax, and those states have better funded schools and local governments to boot. the "taxing old people out of their home" BS was a lie back in '78, and it remains a lie today. a profitable lie for rich people and corporations with 1978 property tax valuations, though.

      •  The elderly people (0+ / 0-)

        could be given an exemption if relatively poor.

  •  Is Repeal of Supermajority for Tax Increases (6+ / 0-)

    in the works? Ohioan here.

    It might be spectacular for the country if California could become a demonstration bed for some progressive policies.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 03:28:59 PM PST

    •  From what I hear (4+ / 0-)

      Democrats are definitely going to look at it.

      Considering that 2/3rds requirement really capped California for years, I am sure they would want to get rid of it once and for all.

    •  my hunch is that they'll nibble at the edges (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      ending the supermajority requirement for local bonds and taxes but not at the state legislature level, for fear of looking too tax-happy. brown in particular is inclined towards decentralization and localization, so i can see him agreeing to it.

      i think it might require another initiative to ratify changing 2/3 at the state leg level, but it's not clear whether that change would be a constitutional amendment (and thus needing to be ratified by popular vote) or whether it would be a statutory adjustment of an existing amendment and thus doable with a simple 2/3 vote.

      the supermajority also exaggerates the power of a small faction of conservative democrats, so i would be surprised if they will be able to pass progressive tax legislation with their newfound supermajority. that wider margin should make regular non-tax legislation a lot easier to pass, though, and it should make the annual budget clusterfuck a lot less odious, as buying off centrist dems makes for much better deals than buying off right wing nutjobs.

      the longer dems hold a supermajority, the more likely they are to stop looking over their shoulder on taxes. look for them to place a bunch of good initiatives on the 2014 ballot, though.

      •  It'll come from the state Senate (0+ / 0-)

        Here's our fearless leader of the Assembly:

        When Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez (D-Los Angeles) was asked what he intended to do with his caucus' new power, he responded with one word: Nothing.

        Government and laws are the agreement we all make to secure everyone's freedom.

        by Simplify on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 12:36:46 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  wtf? (0+ / 0-)

          See this is the critical part. MAKE them do it.  pelosi would not be like perez.  

          What exactly does he mean by nothing?  John perez is gay and he used to be a big supporter of democratic values. You would think after going through struggles he would want to help others who are struggling.

    •  Gooserock - these are all part of our Constitution (3+ / 0-)

      and would require voter approval.

      "let's talk about that"

      by VClib on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 03:49:32 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  You Mentioned High Speed Rail (3+ / 0-)

    if all things stay the same my state (IL) is going to have the best high speed rail in the country. I wish at many levels my state had the government of one party, but alas we're pretty good at getting shit done with two parties on the local level.

    There is a story I like to tell. I live in southern IL just outside of St. Louis. We're called "down state" since much of the power in the state is from Chicago up North.

    A few years ago the folks from my part of the state were not getting the transportation dollars we were supposed to get for our new rail and bus system (which is a stunning story itself).

    So they banded together as a group and literally shut down all government in Springfield until the issue was addressed.

    WiSH bi-partisanship went to different/better levels than this. But I will take it :).

    When opportunity calls pick up the phone and give it directions to your house.

    by webranding on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 03:37:26 PM PST

    •  Oh Highlights Of My Mass Transit System (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sreeizzle2012, FG, Odysseus

      I live in a town of 5,500 folks. I can get on a bus two blocks from my house. Then locations and three lines run through the town. Rail service 3.4 miles away. Free parking. Cost is $2.50 for two hours on it, all free bus transfers. $7 all day access. Seniors ride for FREE.

      Now if I can just get them to grasp that letting me take my bike on the system is a good idea, I wouldn't drive much anymore.

      When opportunity calls pick up the phone and give it directions to your house.

      by webranding on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 03:42:59 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  the idiocy of the CAGOP is astounding (4+ / 0-)

      the CA HSR project runs right through regions of the state that the GOP has long represented, and long won votes by appealing to local resentment of state taxes that fund projects elsewhere but don;t bring them any pork. so what do the local GOP pols do, with this opportunity to finally build some infrastructure in their districts, hire a bunch of people for construction, and boost the local economy?

      throw everything against the wall to block this project, and demonize it as a socialist boondoggle and waste of taxpayer dollars.

      blocking things is the only relevance they have left. they have lost any chance of winning the state, and have settled into a grim determination to burn the state down out of spite.

      •  Most Folks Don't Get IL Is A Lot Like CA (5+ / 0-)

        not as large of a state, but close from north to south. It takes me six hours to get from where I live outside of St. Louis to Chicago.

        I find most people think we're only a few hours apart. But nope, not close to true.

        I can get an Amtrak ticket to get to Chicago for like $33. But it takes more than seven hours to get their. What a waste.

        With our rail system we're looking at around 2.5 to 3 hours.

        That would mean I could get on the thing at 6 AM and be to Chicago, spend the day there, and come home. I would do that at least a few times a year.

        I can't wait.

        When opportunity calls pick up the phone and give it directions to your house.

        by webranding on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 04:00:11 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, it's just nuts (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        webranding, sreeizzle2012, wu ming

        I can't figure out what their problem is either, other than it's just change itself they can't stand.  Of course, maybe that's it, the HSR will have big impacts on cities and towns up and down the Central Valley which will impact those towns politically, economically, and socially.   Suddenly some of those towns will be only an hour away from the big cities.  And they get the payoff first!

        "It's too LATE to stop now!" - John Lee Hooker

        by Rolfyboy6 on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 04:03:29 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It won't be "high speed" ... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          if it makes several stops along the way.

          "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity, and I am not sure about the universe." -- Albert Einstein

          by Neuroptimalian on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 04:20:59 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  they hate california more than anything (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          sreeizzle2012, Rolfyboy6

          since their old california is gone, they have an existential hatred of the emerging california. it really is that simple. perhaps some of them even grok that the central valley is set to be yet another safe democratic base in the coming decade or two, and that they will eventually be defeated by young liberal latinos, just like bob dornan was in the 90s.

          the mayors of the cities with HSR (except for bakersfield) are all big fans of the project.

          •  The CA Repub have a vision of the old Californias (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            wu ming

            which isn't true.   California was always much more wooly than their sanitized dream, and was much more varied.  The Republican Party up until the late 60s was very unlike what it is now and had roots in the old Bullmoose Progressive populist Republican Party of the early 1900s.  The old California Republican Party would be burnt at the stake by the present one.

            "It's too LATE to stop now!" - John Lee Hooker

            by Rolfyboy6 on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 08:02:44 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Let's have the operator of HSR assume all.... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        ..downside risk.

        If HSR is not viable given the current set of assumptions, then the operating company must assume all the operating losses, and under no circumstances will the residents of California have to assume any of them, beyond what has already been agreed to (the 20b bond).

        I'm aware of far too many infrastructure projects which are sold with rosy assumptions that are never met.  The government is then forced to bailout the operator (privatizing gains), while the taxpayer is forced to shoulder the shortfall (socialize losses).

        So, if we can agree that the California/US taxpayer will, under no circumstances be forced to bailout a non-viable HSR system, then let's do HSR.

        Learn about Centrist Economics, learn about Robert Rubin's Hamilton Project.

        by PatriciaVa on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 04:28:03 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  name another HSR system anywhere in the world (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          sreeizzle2012, Odysseus, Tam in CA

          that isn't viable. hell, even the craptastically slow acela turns an operating profit.

          none of you guys ever blink an eye about several billion being spent on highways. california cannot afford not to have an oil-free transport infrastructure.

          •  Acela + one route in Japan + another route... (0+ / 0-)

            ..elsewhere do post operating profits.

            All other HSR networks depend on government subsidies.

            Learn about Centrist Economics, learn about Robert Rubin's Hamilton Project.

            by PatriciaVa on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 06:22:12 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  wrong (0+ / 0-)

              all HSR covers their operating costs. there is a tremendous amount of disinformation by oil corp-funded think tanks by reason, etc., but high speed rail usually subsidizes other slow rail in their national systems.

        •  Vehemently disagree! This is what John McCain (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Leftleaner, Tam in CA

          has already done to Amtrak over the past 20 years.   What you suggest is a **core right wing talking point**.  Why is it okay to subsidize oil, auto, and air to the tune of trillions of dollars and then turn around and say that rail is on its own.  A well integrated high speed rail system would hugely benefit our economy and deserves government stimulus.

  •  Fortunately (4+ / 0-)

    one of those insurance leech democrats is no longer in the California senate. Unfortunately, Juan Vargas is now a member of congress.

    These capitalists generally act harmoniously and in concert, to fleece the people... -Abraham Lincoln

    by HugoDog on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 03:39:34 PM PST

  •  3rd worst unemployment rate in the country (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sreeizzle2012, Gooserock

    If that doesn't change, the supermajority won't be so super for long.

  •  Here's the last bite at Medicre-for-All (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sreeizzle2012, Odysseus

    The so-called "Medicare for all" proposal, Senate Bill 810, fell short of the 21 votes needed to pass the upper house, by a vote of 19-15. Four moderate Democrats abstained and one joined Republicans in voting against the bill.
    Looking at the current make up:

    Senate: 28-10 (1 run off GOP likely / 1 undecided Dem ahead)
    Assembly: 54-26

    One would hope that they could get single payer through.

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