Monday, October 16, 2006

California - Proposition 85

    • Amends California Constitution to prohibit abortion for unemancipated minor until 48 hours after physician notifies minor’s parent or legal guardian, except in medical emergency or with parental waiver.
    • Permits minor to obtain court order waiving notice based on clear and convincing evidence of minor’s maturity or best interests.
    • Mandates various reporting requirements, including reports from physicians regarding abortions performed on minors.
    • Authorizes monetary damages against physicians for violation.
    • Requires minor’s consent to abortion, with certain exceptions.
    • Permits judicial relief if minor’s consent coerced.

    Summary of Legislative Analyst’s Estimate of Net State and Local Government Fiscal Impact:

    • Potential unknown net state costs of several million dollars annually for health and social services programs, court administration, and state health agency administration combined.
    The Pro’s on this one include a Catholic newspaper publisher James E. Holman (Los Angeles Mission (1994), San Francisco Faith, and La Cruz de California (1997), Catholic Conferences of Bishops, the California Pro-life Council, and the governor (see he really is a Republican) and out-of-towner Tom Monaghan, owner of Domino’s pizza (whom I’ve written about before).

    The Con’s are Planned Parenthood, ACLU, League of Women Voters, And Colleges of Gynecologists and Obstetricians.

    The initiative is funded by the same guy who wants to build Catholic town, and is likely funded by money funneled in from the Catholic Church. I am cautious to say that this is an initiative being pushed by the Catholic Church (see church/state separation) when it’s backed and funded by a bunch of church guys. The line from the La Times by the proponents that says: “Without secret access to abortion, teenagers would avoid behavior that could lead to pregnancy. With parental notification, teen pregnancies and abortions would decrease”. My thought is that it would just lead to more abandoned babies or more babies born to teens in dictatorial households. Maybe we should inject some criminal charges to parents who allow their minors to become pregnant.

    If a teen becomes pregnant with no means to take care of the child, then I would hope they would make the right decision for them, whether it means an abortion or not. Putting the decision in the hands of the parents alone is really too little control to late. Where was the parent in the first place? Maybe the Catholic publication and Catholic bishops who support this can answer this one.

    My Vote is NO on proposition 85.

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    Sunday, October 15, 2006

    California - Proposition 84


    • Funds projects relating to safe drinking water, water quality and supply, flood control, waterway and natural resource protection, water pollution and contamination control, state and local park improvements, public access to natural resources, and water conservation efforts.
    • Provides funding for emergency drinking water, and exempts such expenditures from public contract and procurement requirements to ensure immediate action for public safety.
    • Authorizes $5,388,000,000 in general obligation bonds to fund projects and expenditures, to be repaid from the state’s General Fund.
    Summary of Legislative Analyst’s Estimate of Net State and Local Government Fiscal Impact:
    • State cost of about $10.5 billion over 30 years to pay off both the principal ($5.4 billion) and interest ($5.1 billion) costs on the bonds. Payments of about $350 million per year.
    • Reduction in local property tax revenues of several million dollars annually.
    • Unknown costs, potentially tens of millions of dollars per year, to state and local governments to operate or maintain properties or projects acquired or developed with these bond funds.
    This one was interesting to me. The Times reported that the Pro’s include the Democrats, the governor (shhh he’s a Republican) 100’s of conservation groups and a lots of water districts. Its intent is to invest in infrastructure, clean up waterways, and create better access to nature.
    The con’s are essentially from the Republican’s and that it will cost too much. I guess they don’t want to pay for the arguments against this one say that it’s costly and only pet projects for conservationists.

    I find it interesting how Arnold crossed the divide on this one, but if it means better water habitats and cleaner water then it sounds like a win, and the expense seems like a pittance at the end of the day.

    My vote is Yes on 84

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    The 2006 California Election Ballot Measure 83

    Ok, election season is coming and as a citizen of Los Angeles, and of California I thought going over the initiatives, state and local, is pretty relevant and may help spur others to get off their bum and VOTE. Like other people who vote, the ones that don’t vote really shouldn’t be allowed to be citizens. I don’t mean this in any Orwellian kind of way, but the right to vote is why were here. It’s the reason we have 100,000 soldiers in Iraq and why we can write and publish stuff like this.

    Biographicially, I am a white male, employed, married, with 2 children, and intelligent (or at least like to think so). Does what I think matter? Probably not, but I am a voter and I care...and so should you.

    Some of the initiatives and proposition descriptions come from, in part, the Los Angeles Times, Sunday edition on October 15, 2006.

    I’m sure all 3 people who read this will take the time, but I really hope this reaches other voters. So, without further adieu, I present to you, the California Initiatives for 2006.

    Proposition 83


    • Increases penalties for violent and habitual sex offenders and child molesters.
    • Prohibits registered sex offenders from residing within 2,000 feet of any school or park.
    • Requires lifetime Global Positioning System monitoring of felony registered sex offenders.
    • Expands definition of a sexually violent predator.
    • Changes current two-year involuntary civil commitment for a sexually violent predator to an indeterminate commitment, subject to annual review by the Director of Mental Health and subsequent ability of sexually violent predator to petition court for sexually violent predator’s conditional release or unconditional discharge.

    Summary of Legislative Analyst’s Estimate of Net State and Local Government Fiscal Impact:

    • Net state prison, parole, and mental health program costs of several tens of millions of dollars initially, growing to a couple hundred million dollars annually within ten years.
    • Potential one-time state mental hospital and prison capital outlay costs eventually reaching several hundred million dollars.

    Net state and local costs for court and jail operations are unknown.

    The pro’s on this one say that it will keep sex offenders from living near schools and parks, which would protect children. Because we (the non-offender good guys) will know where the offenders are (the bad guys) because “the bad guys” would need to wear electronic ankle bracelets to tell us where they are.

    The con’s say only a small number of offenders attack strangers which doesn’t reduce the risk to the crime of opportunity or family predators. And by restricting where the offenders live will push them out into rural areas where law enforcement is less able to deal with them.

    I’m torn on this issue. I despise sex offenders just like the next parent, but at the same time wonder if we can continue to punitively punish someone once they have served the required prison time for the crime? I’ve also looked at the Megan’s Law site to see who lives nearby and found I had a “former” pedophile living 2 blocks away from me. It was a hard to suppress anxiety and anger but I had to temper that with knowing they served their time and had been “rehabilitated” through our prison system. That was a joke; I really don’t feel our prison system does anything to rehabilitate anyone.

    In the end, I am for this initiative, but concerned about the exile of these offenders. Sooner or later, with no where to go, we may will end up with tiny communities of offenders in places where they can live a quarter mile away from a schools or parks, and then what? What about those cities we are pushing them into? My guess is that it will push them into lower economic cities, putting them in contact with more criminals, adding to the civic diversity. Maybe it will make them build more parks?

    As I said, this one is doing something. I just wish the initiative had something in it with some funding to help lower recidivism in the ones who could be treated.

    My vote is Yes on 83

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    Sunday, October 08, 2006

    Despotism (1946) Encyclopedia Brittanica Films

    This is a great film from 1946. Pay attention to the scales, espicially the 2nd set..

    Despotism (1946), Film, 11:00min

    Measure how a society ranks on a spectrum stretching from democracy to despotism. Explains how societies and nations can be measured by the degree that power is concentrated and respect for the individual is restricted. Where does your community, state and nation stand on these scales?

    Tuesday, October 03, 2006

    Rep. Mark Foley

    Disgraced former Rep. Mark Foley said Tuesday that he was sexually abused by a clergyman as a teenager...


    accepts full responsibility for sending salacious computer messages to teenage male pages.

    But his lawyer went on to say for him..."He continues to offer no excuse whatsoever for his conduct." - except that he was molested as a teenager... Did he mention that? Just wanted to make sure you got it...

    oh, and "Roth also said Foley was under the influence of alcohol when he sent the e-mails and instant messages." - but no excuses here...

    I really hope he gets prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. I wonder if we can sue him for mis use of tax payers money, while he was Chairman of the House Caucus on Missing and Exploited Children. I guess he finally found some...

    I really hope this criminal burns.

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