How I voted

The will of the California people seems to differ somewhat from my own. Most of the Propositions I voted for failed and most that I voted against succeeded.

I found casting my semi-libertarian vote pretty easy. I voted for (in order, starting at #73) “warning labels” but not bans, competition in the workplace, informed consent, smaller government, unbiased government, open marketplace, open marketplace, open marketplace.

(California election results)

PROPOSITION 73
Minors must inform their parents before an abortion

The bill was actually quite well written. It included provisions where the court could decide not to inform parents under many circumstance. It also had several (likely intentional) vague loopholes making it into a law that said, “Hey kid, you should really probably tell your folks about this, but you gotta do what you gotta do.” I think that, as a guideline, that is a very good idea. I also firmly believe in the freedom of choice. My hope would be that this law would help in the following situation: A 15 year old girl gets pregnant. Not knowing what to do, she decides to have an abortion. She goest to a doctor and he asks how carefully she’s thought about this situation and whether she’s consulted her parents. She says that she’s too ashamed to talk to her parents and would he just do the operation. He then says, having evaluated the situation and believing her to just be your average scared kid, that he is obligated by law to contact her parents.
The bill failed :-(


PROPOSITION 74
Increasing the time before a teacher gets tenure

I would love a tenured posistion. Who wouldn’t. But the truth is, good teachers should keep their jobs, and bad ones shouldn’t. It makes very bad employment sense to say that when there is a crunch, long time teachers should keep their jobs and new teachers shouldn’t. Good teachers should keep their jobs and that should be decided by some sort of performance evaluation, not how long they’ve been on the job.
It failed :-)


PROPOSITION 75
Public Unions must ask permission before funding politcal actions.

If you can’t explain to your group’s members why you want to spend their money, then you shouldn’t spend their money. That is a no brainer. I would have a hard time belonging to any organization that spent my membership fees in ways that I disagreed with. Organizations that I fund should be working for me, not the other way around.
It failed :-(


PROPOSITION 76
State spending caps; if the congress can’t figure out how to save money, then the governator will decide what to do.

Though the spending formulas looked complicated, it looked like a pretty sound way to rein in spending. Since everyone thought that the congress would never agree on a budget and it would always go to the (Republican) governer, (showing a huge lack of faith in the resourcefulness of our representatives), it failed. I believe that such a hard deadline would instill resourcefulness in our congress. Spending deadlines are pretty hard (if they’re not met, government employees don’t get paid, so government stops… that’s a pretty hard deadline). Therefore, spending decisions should be decided on a hard schedule.
It failed :-(


PROPOSITION 77
Redistricting congressional lines by impartial(?) retired judges

Everyone in California knows that redistricting is a horrid, dirty game where only the powerful players that have a hand in the redistricting win. This causes the congressional lines to be skewed in unnatural ways, splitting populations up so that the district fail to represent the people. This bill replaces it with something far less partisan and underhanded. I have some doubts about having “retired judges” do the job but then again, I can’t think of any more impartial an arbiter.
It failed :-(


PROPOSITION 78
Drug Discounts part 1

“We’ll ask the drug companies if maybe we could get a discount for some Californians because they like us.” What? You’re kidding, right? What a useless law.
It failed :-)


PROPOSITION 79
Drug Discounts part 2
“We’ll make the drug companies give us a discount.” And the drug companies will go out of business and we’ll all die from SARS. If you’re unhappy about pharmacutical company profits that are out of control, then buy their stock on the New York Stock Exchange.
I just buy my drugs from Canada.
It failed :-)


PROPOSITION 80
Electric Re-regulation

Yes, the Enron thing really fucked things up but most of the players are in jail now. Happily, it failed.

(San Francisco City Propositions)
(San Francisco Election Results)


PROPOSITION A
Shall San Francisco Community College District (City College) increase opportunities and improve conditions at its campuses throughout San Francisco by issuing $246,300,000 in Phase II bonds.

As a friend said, passing a bond for this use is like paying for college with a credit card. It passed. Idiots.


PROPOSITION B
Shall the City incur $208,000,000 of bonded indebtedness to finance street reconstruction, pavement renovation,

The roads are just fine (really, CA’s system is in great repair), the Bay Bridge toll is just $3 they float a bond anyway? Idiotic (or a whole lotta graft) It passed.


Prop C, D, E, G I didn’t know how to vote so I didn’t


PROPOSITION F
Shall the City maintain and operate all 42 firehouses and specific emergency and rescue vehicles and equipment at the same levels that were used on January 1, 2004?

Otherwise known as the “keep unneeded government services because firemen need jobs too” proposition. At the outset, it sounds like the safe thing to do to say “yes” to this, but it turns out that firefighting technology (along with the rest of the world) has progressed such that fewer fire fighters are needed.
It passed :-(


PROPOSITION H
Ban handguns entirely in San Francisco

Among others, the local police were opposed to this (the same people that theoretically stand to get shot by these handguns. The Supreme Court has already ruled that only states (not cities or towns) can regulate firearms so this isn’t even constitutional.
It passed anyway :-(


PROPOSITION I
No Military Recruiters in Public Schools

Institutionalized traitorous censorship in our schools. Brilliant. While being in the military is dangerous, it is still voluntary, and some would think patriotic.
It passed :-(

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