by Ben Cohen
The awesome Mayor from San Francisco, Gavin Newsom, highlights what is wrong with California, and suggests a series of radical steps to change it:
Right now, our government is an opaque system of special
interest-driven constitutional amendments, archaic legislative rules,
and complex ballot initiatives that have created systemic gridlock.
California, the country's most populous state, is governed by a
constitution written 120 years ago and yet is already burdened by the
weight of more than 500 amendments. Our constitution is eight times
longer than the U.S. Constitution.....
Let's repeal the two-thirds vote requirement to pass a budget so a few
members of the minority party can't hold up the budget process and
California won't have to issue IOUs. Let's consider instituting a more
robust rainy day fund, so we save when times are good for those times
when things aren't so good. We need to think about a multi-year budget
cycle, something that will force the legislature to take a longer view
when considering priorities. And it's time to give more local control
to counties and municipalities - after all, they know what is best for
their communities, and they should have more discretion on how to spend
Newsom is running for Governor of California in 2010 on a very, very progressive platform. If you live in California, I'd certainly suggest voting for him.