Friday, May 22, 2009

California's Economic Day of Reckoning?

Here's the problem whenever there's a discussion about cutting the state budget:

The governor's cutbacks could include ending the state's main welfare program for the poor, eliminating health coverage for about 1.5 million poor children, halting cash grants for about 77,000 college students, shortening the school year by seven days, laying off thousands of state workers and teachers, slashing money for state parks and releasing thousands of prisoners before their sentences are finished.


Here's a list of all the state agencies, commissions, boards, and offices. Can any of these be cut or eliminated before we cut education, public safety, or infrastructure? How about those bonds that were passed, $6B for stem cell research and $10B for high speed rail?

Update, 5/25/09: If I've said it once I've said it a million times--California doesn't have an income problem, it has a spending problem. I just read this article and liked the closing sentence:
Any analysis that doesn't explore how a higher-than-inflation-plus-immigration budget has failed to deliver on any increase in services, is not an analysis worth taking more seriously than common propaganda.

7 comments:

socalmike said...

Why won't anyone talk about the 600-lb gorilla in the room - the 20+ billion dollars spent every year on services for illegal aliens? Cutting the high speed rail and the stem cell research is all well and good, but we have GOT to do something about the illegals. That's why we're in the shape we're in.

Darren said...

That's not "why", it's only part. There's no one specific reason we're in this condition, except that the Legislature spends more than it takes in.

Ellen K said...

Darren,
Here's another question. If resources are finite in amounts, then why are we allowing people to come here and use our resources without any sort of reckoning? Would we in turn be allowed to use or exploit their nation's resources?

Darren said...

No, we wouldn't. But while illegals do take up big dollars, if they all went away tomorrow California would still have a budget mess.

maxutils said...

I'm not sure that we COULD cut out the expenditures for high speed rail and stem cell research; first, they were VOTER approved (blame yourselves, Californians -- not the legislature. I'm not sure that a straight majority vote in the legislature could eliminate them. But, even if it could, they were financed by bonds which we are now obligated to service.

mazenko said...

Spending, special interests, and Prop. 13 created a maelstrom. I'd put 13 at the top. Even Reagan didn't restrain the spending - at the state or Federal level.

Darren said...

Prop 13 limits the ability of the legislature to raise taxes, something we need more of. As Instapundit says, "It's not a bug, it's a feature!"