Prop 30 makes me mad. If I were a college student in California, I’d be riotously angry.
Why does it make me mad? Because the California government has spent itself into oblivion, spending all the money it has (and more it doesn’t have) on frivolous, useless crap *cough*bullet train*cough*. The government of California has neglected its duties to its citizens so that there is a continuous enriching of the friends of the legislators and the friends of the legislature: trial lawyers, bureaucrats, and public sector unions. Our roads crumble, our prisons are overcrowded, and our schools only decline in performance while the people at the top of the prison guards’ union, the California Teachers’ Association, and the Service Employees International Union all get rich.
But now the bills are coming due. California is rapidly approaching bankruptcy: the point where you have no money of your own and no one will lend you money. California does not have the convenient ability to print money, so the government, in the guise of Jerry Brown, has instead come hat in hand to the voters and said “the only sane course of action is to raise taxes”. Bullshit.
There is so much to cut in the California budget, and moreover, most of those cuts would not be felt by the average voter. Cuts are needed, they would not be painful, would not be draconian, and would prevent an implosion of the government. But no, the people running the government of California won’t have any of it. Cuts are not even being considered.
Instead, the already beleaguered California tax-payer is being asked to put up more dough. It’s like a crack addict coming to you with a gun and saying “I only need a little money to get back on my feet”. Californians are being played for suckers.
But here’s what really gets my goat. Jerry Brown is making the argument that unless his tax raises are implemented, tuition at UCs and CSUs are going to have to be raised. Bullshit. There is so much redundant and wasteful spending in the budget (California Air Resources Board) that could be cut before cuts to the higher education budget need even be considered. If, however, cuts to higher education must be made, how about the state cut the automatic faculty pay raises of the UC system before raising tuition? For the governor to say “The voters will pass prop 30 and raise taxes or we raise your tuition” is nothing short of the government extorting its citizens.
That is why I’m pissed about Prop 30. If you plan to live in California for the foreseeable future, please vote no.