Brent Budowsky: While the Republican Party at the national and state level is doing everything it can to destroy jobs, the Democratic Party is failing to fight for jobs with the intensity that Democrats have historically done.
Randy Shaw: He didn’t tweet a photo of his “package” to an unsuspecting woman, but California Governor Jerry Brown’s veto of the state’s budget did much worse harm to Democrats and the public by setting the stage for massive education and public service cuts.
Ivan Eland: Deep down, both Republican and Democratic politicians believe something needs to be done about the monstrous and dangerous deficit and debt, but they are scared to do anything because, unfortunately, the American people want their government handouts but are unwilling to pay for them.
James Clark: The state’s death penalty is an ineffective waste of tax dollars that we simply can’t afford, yet while the Governor and Assembly slash everything from preschool to geriatric care, the state remains poised to spend $1 billion on the death penalty over the next five years.
Marian Wang: Though the budget deal struck by lawmakers over the weekend averted a shutdown of the federal government, it still has open-government advocates worried about a shutdown of another sort: a shutdown in transparency.
Caitlin Vega: In these times of unprecedented income inequality, all the Republicans want is to cut worker pay and protections and reward corporations, even if they break the law. It’s taking from those who have the least and giving to those with the most.
Steve Ybarra: If Obama declared a national emergency based upon the oil prices and availability of fuel, we would immediately cut U.S. fuel use by 28%.
Ivan Eland: To keep with the bipartisan spirit after the Gabrielle Giffords’ assassination attempt and also to avoid partisan fighting over spending priorities, which will bog down and probably eventually kill any significant budget cuts, all government programs should be cut by 15 percent from last year’s budget level, including heretofore sacred defense and entitlement programs.
Tina Dupuy: What Planned Parenthood really does is keep poor people out of emergency rooms. The clinics treat people with or without insurance for ranges of health issues. Yes, low-cost community clinics save taxpayers’ money. Lots.
Robert Reich: The President has to reframe the debate around the necessity of average families having enough to spend to get the economy moving again. He needs to remind America this is not 1995 but 2011 — and we’re still in a jobs crisis brought on by the bursting of a giant debt bubble and the implosion of total demand.
Tracy Emblem: California taxpayers should carefully consider the cost-benefit analysis, because when we cut public funding for these institutions, we cut our state’s economic advantage and future prosperity.
Walter G. Moss: Florida’s new governor, Rick Scott, is demonstrating why most of us who consider ourselves progressives dislike the politics of Tea-Party-backed candidates. For many of us, compassion and empathy are central political values, and Scott’s first budget proposal, unveiled on February 7th, reflects little of either value.
Randy Shaw: The Obama Administration honored Ronald Reagan’s 100th birthday on February 6 by proposing steep cuts to two of the leading programs for the urban poor: community service grants and community development block grants (CDBG).