Dilbert by Scott Adams
Daily Archive: September 12, 2011
Sep 12 2011
Dilbert by Scott Adams
Sep 12 2011
Rep. Brad Sherman has represented Thousand oaks in the past and the demographics which are not as blatantly gerrymandered in Democratic registration is competitive for him. But, the incumbent in this district who now lives just outside CA-26 is Rep. Elton Gallegly and he has NOT announced his intentions – either to run in CA-26, run against GOP Rep. Buck McKeon in his new home district (Simi Valley) or retire.
Plus, there is a referendum petition circulating since Friday and this could throw all of the new California Citizen’s Redistricting Commission Congressional Districts out. What a headache, if you are an incumbent POL.
In any case, Scott Lay has this excellent analysis of this Berman Vs. Sherman top two battle in CA-30, if the election were to be held tomorrow.
Currently, CD30 is a three-way race with Berman, Sherman and actor-businessman Mark Reed. Now, with full respect to Mark Reed, the voter performance in this district would require an October surprise against a Dem to win. In this world, however, anything is possible (such as a Republican winning NY-9 next Tuesday). The goal is to survive and have a chance to be on the ballot in November.
Now, for Berman and Sherman, their goal should be to keep Reed in the race and to knock the other off in June. After setting aside Mark Reed’s nearly guaranteed 29%, there is 71% up for grabs. It’s probably more like 67%, as John McCain received 33% in CD30 in 2008. Therefore, if Berman and Sherman are equally popular, we probably have a pie divided up three ways.
If I am Berman or Sherman, I would be focused on making nice with Reed, and going for the jugular of the other -erman. While it’s hard to see the candidates doing this overtly, it certainly could draw the attention of a SuperPAC looking to curry favor with a certain member of Congress. Again, we’re talking about the difference between French Vanilla and Vanilla Bean, but individuals do matter in the ranking committee system of Congress.
For Berman, it’s the recording industry–a huge player in the district, in Washington, and specifically in House Judiciary (where Berman is the #2 Dem). For Sherman, the interests are less identifiable as his committees are not juice. However there is a growing push for intellectual property reform from wealthy leaders in Silicon Valley, who might be persuaded Berman is too close to Hollywood and who could write some big checks.
My bet is that Rep. Brad Sherman moves to CA-26 when Rep. Gallegly decides to retire – at the last minute. Then, the race may be between Republican California State Senator Tony Strickland, Republican Ventura County Supervisor Linda Parks and Democrat Rep. Sherman.
In a three way race, Sherman could finish third there too.
Sep 12 2011
Hearst Caste, San Simeon, California
Opponents of new congressional district maps recently drawn by a citizens commission may begin a petition drive for a referendum effort to overturn the maps, the secretary of state’s office announced Friday.
Proponents of the referendum, led by Republicans who feel the maps unfairly put their party at a disadvantage in coming elections, now have less than 90 days in which to collect the 504,760 registered voter signatures required to put the matter on the June 2012 ballot.
Earlier, another group of Republicans began collecting signatures for a referendum to overturn the California Citizens Redistricting Commission’s set of state Senate maps.
The political angst that has followed an independent commission’s redrawing of 177 legislative, congressional and Board of Equalization districts is being duplicated on a smaller scale in hundreds of local governments.
Cities, counties, school districts and other local agencies that elect boards from districts must also reconfigure them to equalize populations as reported in the 2010 census, while following federal Voting Rights Act guidelines to protect non-white communities’ political standing.
The state’s most traumatic local redistricting battle is in Los Angeles County, whose nearly 10 million residents are divvied up among just five supervisorial districts.
When the board consisted of five white men a generation ago, they were dubbed “the five little kings.” It even had a Republican majority during the 1980s, thanks to a political misstep by then-Gov. Jerry Brown in filling a board vacancy.
As the county’s ethnic makeup changed dramatically in the 1980s and 1990s, however, the board also evolved, albeit reluctantly.
It took a court decision to create a Latino seat that’s been occupied for the past two decades by Gloria Molina. There’s also one black man, Mark Ridley-Thomas, and three white men, one of whom, Zev Yaroslavsky, is Jewish, and two of whom are Republicans, Don Knabe and Mike Antonovich.
A bill loaded with immigration politics and potential implications for highway safety has landed on Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk.
The legislation by Assemblyman Gil Cedillo, D-Los Angeles, would change police procedures at drunken-driving checkpoints, prohibiting officers from arresting drivers and immediately impounding their cars if their only offense is not having a license.
Supporters say the bill, AB353, would impose a consistent policy statewide – some agencies confiscate unlicensed drivers’ cars now, and some do not – while keeping DUI checkpoints from being turned into traps for otherwise law-abiding illegal immigrants who cannot obtain licenses.
“In most parts of California, you basically have to have a car,” said Mark Silverman, director of immigration policy at the Immigrant Legal Resource Center. “You have to be able to drive to survive, to get anywhere. Because of that, the truth is, immigrant drivers without licenses will be driving anyway because of the necessity. The towing of cars will not stop people from driving.”
But for families who have lost loved ones because of unlicensed drivers, the bill would endanger everyone who uses the roads.
President Obama’s new jobs-creation plan all but ignores what many economists see as the single biggest problem in the stalling economy: the continuing depression in the housing market.
Home sales, prices and construction have been bad and have been getting worse for so long that Washington and many Americans have grown numb to the problem.
But dig below the surface and housing turns out to be a root cause of many of the other problems that are getting more attention — including the high level of unemployment that Obama focused on in his speech Thursday to Congress.
“That’s probably the biggest missing ingredient here,” economist Mark Zandi said after reviewing Obama’s proposed $447-billion package of tax cuts and infrastructure spending.
More than four years after the sector’s initial collapse, housing has become the economy’s silent killer.
With about one-fourth of all houses in the United States in foreclosure or still underwater — their mortgagesexceeding their market price — millions of Americans face such severe financial problems that they cannot begin to resume their normal roles as consumers, move to new jobs or finance their small businesses.
Many have little prospect of regaining their lost financial security. The housing bust wiped out more than half the $13.5 trillion that homeowners had in equity in early 2006, according to Federal Reserve data.
In addition, the near-halt to construction of new housing has left several million once well-paid workers — many of them with advanced skills and years of experience — either unemployed or just getting by with lower-wage part-time work.
Like the troubled homeowners, most of these workers face long odds against recovering their old middle-class lives unless the industry revives.As for financial institutions, billions of dollars in bad mortgages have become an albatross that undermines lenders’ basic soundness and discourages new lending for almost any purpose. Weighed down by steep losses in its home-lending unit, Bank of America is preparing to cut 40,000 or more jobs nationwide.
Enjoy your day!
Sep 12 2011
Howard Jarvis, chief sponsor of the controversial Proposition 13,
signals victory as he casts his own vote at the Fairfax-Melrose
precinct - June 1978. Courtesy of the Los Angeles Times
The problem with Jerry Brown is that he peeled off two GOP Assembly Members (Nathan Fletcher and Cameron Smyth) at the end of the legislative session to pass his plan and really did not let his proposal have a thorough vetting. If Brown were to call a special legislative session, and the matter could be discussed and amendments considered, Brown and the voters of California may have better success.
But, I doubt George Skelton will be mollified. Oh well.