Fiddling While California Burns

This week there is even more evidence that the ruinous taxation and out-of-control spending of California politicians and the state’s big spending lobbyists have pushed the Golden State over the edge. Today, the state announced massive cuts to essential services like schools and police. About $980 million will be slashed from the budget, with K-12 education and law enforcement bearing some of the biggest cuts. And yet, Sacramento politicians are handing out fat pay raises to their staffs.

As California circles the drain financially, each and every year more and more expensive ballot measures and initiatives are proposed to sap the state’s resources. And despite the fact that California can’t pay for the basics, the spending lobby wants to add other massive obligations to the budget. One in particular is the so-called California Cancer Research Act, a plan that creates a brand new $855 million spending program that duplicates many programs already in place. This boondoggle, which will come before voters on the June ballot, commits the state to the same kind of auto-pilot spending that bankrupted her in the first place. It includes an additional $16 million per year to spend on new government employees, adding to California’s growing pension burden.

Voters need to send a clear message to Sacramento that the way out of this financial crisis is figuring out how to pay for what the state already has before spending more money on new programs and entitlements. Voting no on this ballot box boondoggle in June is a good first step.