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looking at the ballot

My voter's guide for the upcoming election has come in the mail, and I'm going to comment on it :

Proposition 1 authorizes bonds to fund housing assistance programs. I always vote no on anything that issues bonds or adds or raises taxes: It just encourages state officials to imagine that they have room in the budget, when in fact state spending is ruinously out of control. But beyond that, what CAlifornia needs is not state constructed "affordable housing," but massive repeal of zoning laws that prevent construction, especially multiunit construction, in many areas.

Proposition 2 moves mental health funds from general mental health expenditures to providing residential facilities for the homeless mentally ill. I'm not sure about this one; as C points out to me, it takes away funds from the other mentally ill, but on the other hand, putting crazy people on the streets isn't good either for them or for anyone else.

Proposition 3 issues bonds for water and environmental projects. No.

Proposition 4 issues bonds to fund hospitals providing children's health care. No.

Proposition 5 allows all homeowners who are over 55 to be eligible for property tax savings when they move. I'm against this; it's yet another measure turning the relatively prosperous elderly into a privileged population at the expense of the less wealthy young, and I think if we have to have taxes we should follow the Scandinavian model and have them hit everyone, rather than "Don't tax you, don't tax me,/Tax that man behind that tree."

Proposition 6 eliminates recently passed fuel and vehicle taxes and thus removes funding for highways, roads, and transit. I'm really undecided about this one; one one hand, it does get rid of a tax, but on the other, California transportation infrastructure is deteriorating.

Proposition 7 allows California to change (perhaps eliminate) daylight savings time. I'd like to have the option of doing away with it. Yes.

Proposition 8 limits the amount dialysis clinics can charge and prohibits their turning down patients based on payment source (meaning Medicare and Medicaid, which are notoriously cheap). That way lies driving clinics out of business, and leaving people with a right to dialysis at "affordable" prices but noplace in reach that does it. No.

Proposition 10 authorizes local governments to engage in rent control without state-level controls. Rent control has been tried over and over; it leads to excess demand for housing, drastically reduced turnover in rentals, and reduced incentive for landlords to maintain property or build new apartments, all of which are detrimental to renters like me, as well as depriving owners of some of the value of their rental properties. No, no, a hundred times no.

Proposition 11 requires that private-sector ambulance workers not be on call during their breaks. That sort of thing should be between the employer and the worker. And it's really ugly if someone is dying and the ambulance crew can't be sent out because they're on break. No.

Proposition 12 requires that confinement of food animals meet increased space requirements. Another interference with private business decisions, and one that likely raises food costs. No.

U.S. Senate: I really didn't plan to vote in this one; it's de León, a Democrat, against Feinstein, a Democrat, and I gave up voting for Democrats in 2009. And I really dislike the California system where write-in votes are forbidden in the general election, even if both candidates are from the same party. On the other hand, after Feinstein's handling of the Kavanaugh confirmation—sitting on the charges against him for weeks, and then going ahead and bringing them forward when they would cause the maximum disruption and delay—I think she deserves to be driven out of office, even though her rival is even closer to being an outright socialist, and endorses almost no positions that I support. (If she thought the charges were true, they were too serious to be delayed in that way, and if she thought they were false, she shouldn't have brought them at all.) So I'm undecided.

The other elections for offices are mostly either Republican versus Democrat, in which I'll vote for the Republican unless they're unendurably obnoxious, or two Democrats, in which I'll abstain.

In the nonpartisan election for Superintendent of Public Instruction, Thurmond has endorsements from Kamala Harris and the Democratic Party, and has pledged to oppose Betsy DeVos's proposals, so I'm definitely against him; Tuck seems less bad, and I may vote for him.


( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 2nd, 2018 11:07 am (UTC)
Although I can't vote on any of these, I enjoy reading your assessments.
Oct. 2nd, 2018 02:57 pm (UTC)
Glad to be of interest!
Oct. 4th, 2018 02:34 am (UTC)
Mine came as well. I was disgusted at the sample ballot when I saw that I had only two choices for each each office, and that the choices were Republican or Democrat.

As always, I am interested in your opinion.
Oct. 4th, 2018 08:47 am (UTC)
The Democrat vs. Democrat Senate race is even more annoying. But what really offends me is that the option of write-in voting has been removed. I think that's a direct attack on voter sovereignty. If I want to write in the leading Republican for Senate, or the leading Libertarian, or Bugs Bunny, I should be able to.
Oct. 6th, 2018 02:07 am (UTC)
Agreed. However, the Big Two have a firm grip on this nation's politics.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )

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