A Modest Proposal for Financing Higher Education in California

juvenile detention

John MacMurray: The brilliantly simple/simply brilliant solution: re-designate our Cal State and University of California campuses as prisons. Since a goodly number of the current student population regards them as such anyway, it should not be too big a stretch.

Mehserle-Grant Verdict Aftermath: Oakland Lives Another Day

Mehserle Verdict

H. Scott Prosterman: Regardless of the verdict, some element of violent protest was inevitable. Ironically, most of those arrested were white, suburban anarchist, rather than black activists.

Oscar Grant Case Verdict – Involuntary Manslaughter

The Oscar Grant verdict has been handed down. Johannes Mehserle has been found guilty of involuntary manslaughter, the lesser of the three charges he was facing.

Prop 25 Most Essential Part of November Ballot

prop 16 results

Paul Hogarth: Proposition 25 was put on by labor unions and the Democratic Party, and political consultant Roger Salazar has been retained. Liberal bloggers and other progressives are skeptical, with some going so far as to claim it doesn’t make sense to get a majority for the budget – if raising taxes we need would still require a two-thirds vote.

Can Slake Quench LA’s Media Thirst?

magazines

Michael Sigman: Joe Donnelly and Laurie Ochoa — the deputy editor and editor, respectively, of LA Weekly until both were forced out by corporate overlords from Phoenix in recent years — have joined forces to produce the debut issue of the quarterly Slake Los Angeles. It’s a gorgeous, 232-page quarterly mix of journalism, fiction, poetry, photography and art.

Jury Selection “Blackout” in Oscar Grant Murder Case Troubling: LA Has Seen This Before

Oscar Grant

Anthony Samad: In the first week of the Oscar Grant – Johannes Mehserle trial, all five black juror prospects were dismissed. The racial make up of the jury was 100% non-black.

The Birthers Ruined Schwarzenegger’s White House Chance

Arnold Swartzenegger

Tina Dupuy: The Republicans siding with the Birthers and generally ramping up of the anti-immigration sentiment, are shooting themselves in the foot. And not just with Latino voters. Schwarzenegger is by far the most popular and (gasp) competent of any other candidates vying for the nomination in 2012.

First Solve Prison Crisis, Then Fix California’s Budget

Gary Gilmore

Dick Price: To get a handle on the damage California’s current approach to incarceration is having on its citizens, consider this: In a recent 23-year period, California erected 23 prisons—one a year, each costing roughly $100 million dollars annually to operate, with both Democratic and Republican governors occupying the statehouse—at the same time that it added just one campus to its vaunted university system, UC Merced.

California Fair Elections Kickoff

Campaign cash

Wendy Block: It’s impossible to eliminate money from politics, and there’s no reason to. But release candidates from huge campaign contributors and the special favors that follow victory, and you’ll see miracles after every election.

Lame Duck Terminator

Joseph Palermo: Schwarzenegger’s hackneyed “State of the State” address was pathetic and unconvincing. If it weren’t for his acting chops and his ability to emote on cue, he couldn’t get away with the simplistic platitudes that roll off his tongue. Then again, if he couldn’t act he wouldn’t be governor either.

The Oligarchy Wins Again!

CEO

Something, anything, has to be done at some point to show that the Obama Administration is not just the latest group of good people with good ideas that are absorbed into a system that makes Hamid Karzai look like a clean government activist. The corporate money so clogs the arteries of our body political the whole damn thing is sclerotic, choked off from the life-giving oxygen of democracy.

Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Knife Play

Schwarzenegger

Now we have a Republican governor in California who sees the state’s current budget catastrophe as nothing but a big joke. Why else would Arnold Schwarzenegger post a tasteless Twitter video where he wields a two-foot-long folding knife boasting about his budget-cutting prowess?

The Republicans Win Big in California!

Arnold_Schwarzenegger

When Arnold Schwarzenegger calls an agreement “a really great, great accomplishment” you know average Californians are in for a fleecing.

Arnold Schwarzenegger: Compassionless Conservatism

arnold1

Schwarzenegger doesn’t get the human costs of his actions. He seems to enjoy the attention he’s getting as well as playing on right-wing “populist” anger. He’s satisfying his Tea Bagger constituency by beating up on Californians who happen to be poor or work in the public sector.

Arnold Schwarzenegger: Tea Bagging California

arnold cuts budget

Just as many of the neo-cons seemingly cross their fingers hoping for a mass-casualty terrorist attack on U.S. soil because they see it as political gold for them, they’re also cheerleading for the economy to remain stagnant

Schwarzenegger and the Republicans Cost California $7 Billion

arnold

The California State Senate adjourned at midnight, unable to pass three stopgap bills that would have saved the state $7 billion. To appease Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, the Democratic leaders of the state legislature hastily drew up the three complicated bills to try to stave off fiscal collapse and the necessity to begin issuing IOUs. All […]

Schwarzenegger’s Budget Battle II: Another Bad Sequel

arnold

Franklin Delano Roosevelt declared that the test of our nation was “not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.” California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger might be married to a Kennedy but his governing philosophy is pure George W. Bush […]

California Democrats: “Spreading the Pain” from Sacramento

Karen Bass, Darryl Steinberg

When his term mercifully expires next year, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger will be leaving the Golden State in the worst condition than at any time its history. If Schwarzenegger and his right-wing Republican co-conspirators get their way (as they always seem to do), they’ll gut every social program and educational institution in the state in […]

Wiped? Back to Work

falling-uncle-sam

This past Sunday I ran for re-election as a Delegate to the California Democratic Party (CDP). I was on the Progressive Slate, from the 42nd Assembly District which covers parts of LA and the San Fernando Valley. Two years ago when I first ran, local progressive Dems were fired up and ready to give the […]

Prison Expansion Pushed Forward While Massive Cuts to Education Proposed

Prison Budget Expands, Education Budget Cut While the Governor and legislature propose massive cuts to education and 2,000 public works projects are on hold, a bill to propel a $12 billion prison construction project was sent to Governor Schwarzeneggar. This bill is designed to fix problems with AB900, the largest prison construction plan in history. […]

Fair and Balanced Districts?

gerrymandering

by Richard M. Mathews – In a November 25 editorial (“Prop. 11′s point”), the Los Angeles Times stated, “California is supposed to end up with a lot more of those evenly balanced districts.” The Times does not understand of the process of gerrymandering. Balanced districts must not be our goal.

Where Is California’s Barack Obama?

Fresh off a thrilling presidential campaign, California Democrats face a Governor’s race without a candidate that can rally a multi-racial, class-crossing grassroots base. The three most talked about candidates — Dianne Feinstein, Jerry Brown and Gavin Newsom — neither offer a sharply new direction nor provide the transformational message that was at the heart of […]

Obama Landslide Predicted in California Field Poll—Largest Margin Since FDR—And There’s More—Effects Seen in Downticket Races

The California Field Poll released today shows Barack Obama has widened his lead to a 55% to 33% margin over John McCain with 4% voting for other candidates and 8% undecided amongst likely voters. If this holds up, it will be the largest margin any candidate has won in California since World War II.

Do You Have a License to Have Children but Not Sex?

I was drawn to the headline of Friday’s September 19, 2008, Los Angeles Times Opinion piece entitled “Protecting Marriage to Protect Children.” It was written by New York author David Blankenhorn, President of Institute for American Values (IAV). Mr. Blankenhorn wants everyone to vote for Prop 8 to take away the right of lesbians and […]

Senator Cox Speaks Of Crime and Government

Crime

In his latest constituent newsletter, California State Senator Dave Cox confuses coincidence with causation by connecting imprisonment with lower crime rates. He also rejects the notion that California imprisons too many, saying: “California’s incarceration rate [is] very ordinary with at least 20 other states reporting more inmates per 100,000 residents.”

A Watershed Election Year

Democrat Collage

The several political or at least politically tinged events we attended this week showed us that the momentum for change is running fever pitch here in Los Angeles. Clearly, chickens have come home to roost for the woeful Bush Administration and the failed right-wing policies supporting it. Democratic candidates up and down the slate stand […]

Obama Campaign Hears the Grassroots

Obama Poster - by Shepard Fairey

There has been an extraordinary outpouring of grassroots support for Senator Obama among Democrats and Independents in all 53 California Congressional districts. In recognition of this tremendous enthusiasm, our campaign has asked the California Democratic Party to allow all persons who have filed to be a district delegate candidate for Senator Obama at the Democratic […]

Healing the Black-Brown Divide

African American and Latino Communities Must Unite. Traditional allies and friends in a common struggle for equal opportunity, the African American and Latino communities of Los Angeles have grown apart in recent years. Where once blacks and browns stood shoulder to shoulder in the decades-long fight to correct the social injustices they both faced and […]