Sunday, October 22, 2006

Two Exciting Things on My Ballot: Angelides and Prop. 89

First off, California has the opportunity to elect one of the most competent leaders in the country as governor. Sure he's a little nerdier than Westly or Schwarzenegger, but he's instituted some great programs as state treasurer: used pensions to fund instate emerging economies, developed a plan to promote smart growth, provided teachers with the ability to purchase homes of their own, and used his position to push for divestment from Sudan. His policies have been nationally recognized (e.g. by the Clinton Administration). Sadly, he was the only candidate with the courage to point out that long term California economic prospects are in a precarious situation due to structural deficits, exacerbated by Schwarzenegger's reliance on bond measures rather than making actual budget decisions. Basically, he's been kinda like an irresponsible college student with a credit card and then calls himself a leader. But the positives about Angelides indicate that he could put California on the right track, both short and long term. Democrats who are "not excited" about Angelides should read a little more about his record. Far from being the rogue taxer Westly and Schwarzenegger like to paint him as, he's a fiscally prudent--and wise--leader. Something California could use while the economy is in a so-called "expansion".

The second thing on the ballot that I like most is Prop. 89. I generally hate the initiative process because it's been perverted and manipulated beyond usefulness. It takes a lot for me to consider voting for a ballot initiative, but Prop. 89 is a good idea. And it's something that I feel is necessary, much more so than redistricting reform. It's also something I don't see the legislature ever taking on seriously.

Yeah, I know there are other candidates on the ballot. More on those later. But California could become a global leader in so many areas with an Angelides administration. We probably won't have a chance like this for a long time.


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