Thursday, March 11, 2010

The state we're in...

Greetings from California…or what’s left of it…

More good news from the Golden State: unemployment has now topped 20 percent in at least eight counties.

Greece hits the skids. Could this be what’s ahead for California?

What pushed the Golden State into the state it’s in? The reasons are myriad, but here’s one: its vaunted higher education system.

The other “beach state” – Florida is being hit by a 35-year high in unemployment: 11.9 percent. California’s is still in excess of 12 percent.

Who will lead us out of this mess? Who will sacrifice so that the state regains its once-enviable position in the world? Probably not its special interest constituencies. To get an idea who is pulling the strings, it's important to know who is pulling the strings in Sacramento. So who are California’s biggest political spenders? According to the Los Angeles Times, the teachers union is tops:
“Five special interests were responsible for more than half of the billion dollars spent since 2000, including:
--The California Teachers Assoc., which spent $211.8 million.
--The California State Council of Service Employees, $107.4 million.
--The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, $104.9 million.
--The Morongo Band of Mission Indians, which operates a casino under a state-approved compact, $83.6 million.
--The Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians, which also operates a casino, $69.2 million. PG&E, Chevron, AT&T, Philip Morris USA and Southern California Edison are also among the top 15 spenders.“

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