Schwarzenegger and California

Our governor, the Terminator, is quite the personality.  I don’t want to complain about him too much since he has been o.k. to the glbt community, considering he is a Republican.  However, someone got to Arny recently.  A few months ago he actively worked with the Democratic majority in the State Assembly and Senate to push through legislation to help with the horrible budget.  This included raising taxes (which I don’t have a problem with).  However, the special election didn’t go through.  Now, all of a sudden, he is totally against new taxes.  All the republicans in this state signed  a pledge not to raise taxes.  Someone from that outside group must have gotten to Schwarzenegger because now he won’t even discuss new taxes.

Now he proposes to take away help to the elderly, the sick, state workers (whom he has forced into taking a 3rd unpaid day/month).  So how do you think the Terminator feels about California and all the people he is hurting?  Here is a quote from a New York Times article:

Schwarzenegger and I then repaired to a tent that he had put up in a courtyard next to his office, which allows him to smoke cigars legally at work (no smoking is allowed inside the Capitol). The tent is about 15 feet square, carpeted with artificial turf and outfitted with stylish furniture, an iPod, a video-conferencing terminal, trays of almonds, a chess table, a refrigerator and a large photo of the governor. Schwarzenegger reclined deeply in his chair, lighted an eight-inch cigar and declared himself “perfectly fine,” despite the fiscal debacle and personal heartsickness all around him. “Someone else might walk out of here every day depressed, but I don’t walk out of here depressed,” Schwarzenegger said. Whatever happens, “I will sit down in my Jacuzzi tonight,” he said. “I’m going to lay back with a stogie.”

So while people go hungry, go without medicine, go without jobs and money, our governor doesn’t care.  He has his giant cigars and his jacuzzi.  You want to know what I think about this?  As a historian, I can’t help but see the parallels to Marie Antoinette in her (supposed) statement “let them eat cake.”  Marie lost her head over that one.  I wonder if Arnie will get to keep his cushy job after this?

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5 Responses to Schwarzenegger and California

  1. Justin says:

    Hi Kevin, The devils advocate here :). I know your post deals primarily with your being upset about the Gov\’s words about his jacuzzi and cigars but, I have to ask. Correct me if I\’m wrong but wasn\’t it 65% of the voters in California who nixed the tax increases? Who does the govenor represent? Didn\’t the democratic controlled senante want to divert money from tobacco taxes, mental health programs and childhood development funds into the general fund? Wouldn\’t diverting those funds hurt the poor and elderly of your state? Did you personaly vote to pass the increase in taxes? Do you donate funds or food to your local food bank? Do you do volunteer work with programs assisting the poor and elderly? 🙂 I know a mean question but, you know me. With the rate of unemployment in California just how much of a tax increase would you be willing to go for? After all people who don\’t have jobs don\’t pay taxes do they? How much of a tax increase would it take to get California out of the mess it is in? How much of the states money is being spent on programs that are not really necessary? Wouldn\’t it make sense to cut those before running to cut funding for the poor and elderly? Do you really believe in temporary tax increases? Look at your telephone bill. There is a temporary tax increase on it that was first put in place in 1898 and has continued since then. Ok enough of the devils advocate. I can see how his statements would upset you because they upset me. However I do have to question just how much the legislators are really doing to make honest cuts in the spending of state funds on projects that are not really necessary, just as I question it on the federal level and g-d knows the gross squandering of our tax dollars is massive there.

  2. Kevin says:

    Hey Justin!I talked about the spread of reading and newspapers in Europe in the 1700s today in my class, and I then told them about the Arnie story. I think they made the connection between the people in the 1700s who were complaining about their government and today…O.k. mr. Devil\’s advocate (hey, isn\’t that another name for Satan??? 🙂 Let\’s see–yes, 65% nixed the tax increases–including myself. However, that is not why most of those 65% voted no. They voted no because they are sick and tired of a useless legislature and governor who refuse to actually do anything. The Republicans refuse to raise a single penny in new tax and California needs a 2/3 majority to pass a budget (the Republicans here are in the minority). The vote was not to say no to new taxes (and I for new taxes) but to send a message to those governing this state. Did it work? Well, not yet. But it doesn\’t really affect Schwarzenegger–he has his fancy cigars and his jaccuzi to make him happy.I don\’t know about the diversion of money into a general fund–I haven\’t heard about that. In general the democrats are against taking money away from the poor and from the education budget.To answer your question–nope, I don\’t volunteer at food banks. However, I give most of what I grow away to our neighbors who are in pretty bad economic condition. I figure that takes care of giving money to food banks and volunteering for the poor and the elderly (since most of my neighbors fit those categories). I also give it away to anyone who wants it. How much of a tax increase would I be up for? Well, the state income tax just went up a hair–I have to say that I only teach part time but it hasn\’t affected me all that much. If a tax increase is spread out, then it doesn\’t hurt most people. I don\’t know how much a tax increase it would take to get us out of this mess. The Republicans refuse to raise any tax at all and they aren\’t budging. That is ridiculous and dangerous. The housing market fell, therefore tax revenue fell. Where do they think the money is going to come from? The deficit is at around 25 billion. That is a lot of tax–and it can\’t all be fixed with taxes alone. Lots of things can be cut–but not education, not health care and not help for the poor. Many businesses here in the state could be taxed more (sorry Rob!). For example, oil isn\’t taxed very much. It could be. I wish I knew how honestly these legislators and the governor were really serious about this mess. They get paid regardless even though they are happy cutting other people\’s pay. They should have seen this mess coming, or they should have reacted to it faster. It doesn\’t take a genius to see that if the housing market starts to go down, state revenue goes down as well. Instead of pretending it will go away, California legislators decide to foist the decision making onto the public. O.k. Now I will get down off my soapbox and start writing lectures about the American Revolution–which was all about taxation and overturning a bad government! 🙂

  3. Justin says:

    Hey Kevin, "O.k. mr. Devil\’s advocate (hey, isn\’t that another name for Satan??? :)" I am so glad you were able to pick up on that . We will discuss your reservations at our great thermal spa later LOL. You passed all the tests :). Your right it doesn\’t affect Schwarzenegger the only thing will be to vote him out of office but with all his monies and his wifes connections he will never really hurt. The only ones who really get hurt in these things are the people who desperately need the help the most. I still do not understand why lawmakers always run to cut programs that help the poor and the elderly first. They refuse to look at programs that are truely wasteful because of the big donor factors. That is both on a local state and federal level. I know that the 1 A prop did call for taking money that has been set aside for mental health and childhood development programs and put it in the general fund. You know from history the Feds did this with Social Security so they could make their deficet look less than it was and SS has been a mess ever since. I just threw that Food Bank thing in there to be mean (oooops did I really put that in print? :/ ). I kinda had you pegged for the type of individual who would share with others who are having a rough time. The only problem with this is it is going to make my arguments with ST Peter about you a lot harder 🙂 hehehe. I really hope you didn\’t take it personal because I really think your a great guy and will make a great addition to our staff ROFL. I hope your state lawmakers can pull their heads out of their a _ _es or at least change the plexiglass in their belly buttons and see just how their in-action is really hurting people who need help. Of course I say that about our Fed people too but I dont think there is much hope for either group. I would have loved to hear your lecture about the 1700\’s. Perhaps a lecture about the Constitution would do them some good as well. Now don\’t you feel better getting up on that soap box and just being able to let go? BTW I just went over the reservation book and ummmmmm oh well we will discuss that later (toodles Kevin )

  4. Kevin says:

    Hey Justin!I definitely didn\’t take that personally! \’A member of our staff\’? I thought I was already a member. I\’ll have to check on my status with the American Family Association. Big Don can probably fill me in pretty quickly! 🙂

  5. Kevin says:

    hey~how are you? 🙂

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