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Daniel Weintraub

California Insider

A Weblog by
Sacramento Bee Columnist Daniel Weintraub

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« September 19, 2006 | | September 21, 2006 »
September 20, 2006

Making laws really is like making sausage (or schnitzel)

In an editorial meeting this morning with the Sacramento Bee, Gov. Schwarzenegger explained the way he has changed his approach to working with the Legislature from last year to this year:

“I’m much more inclusive. Last year was one of those situations where…it was the approach that was wrong. To go out in the state of the state (speech) and say, ‘Hey, you do this in the next two months and if you don’t, I go to the people,’ I think that was too harsh. It makes everybody feel defensive: If that’s his approach I’m not going to help him. It was kind of like I expect you to do this.

"It’s communication.

"You know it is the same thing, I can go to my wife and I can go and say, ‘Look, I have some friends coming over from Austria and I expect you to make the best wiener schnitzels they’ve ever eaten. This is absolutely a must.’ She most likely will burn that and they will all choke to death. That’s what she would do.

"But if I say to Maria, ‘I have some friends coming over from Austria, and the Austrians claim that Americans don’t know how to make wiener schnitzel. Let’s show them. I know you make the best wiener schnitzels in town. Better than my mother ever made. It is unbelievable. You make those wiener schnitzels, and its going to be a winner.’ Now my wife is going to kick in and go and do everything she can because it’s a different approach.

"It’s communication. It’s the way you talk to people.”

Posted by dweintraub at 1:21 PM

Angelides on health care

Phil Angelides says the answer to our health care problems is more government control of the health care industry: a cap of 10 percent on overhead and profit for HMOs. But no limit, apparently, on what HMOs can spend paying hospitals, doctors, pharmacies and labs, where most of the costs in health care actually are. Read the whole plan here.

Posted by dweintraub at 12:44 PM

Lockyer sues automakers

Attorney General Bill Lockyer has filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court against the "Big Six" automobile manufacturers over the issue of global warming.

From the press release:

The complaint alleges that under federal and state common law the automakers have created a public nuisance by producing “millions of vehicles that collectively emit massive quantities of carbon dioxide,” a greenhouse gas that traps atmospheric heat and causes global warming. Under the law, a “public nuisance” is an unreasonable interference with a public right, or an action that interferes with or causes harm to life, health or property. The complaint asks the court to hold the defendants liable for damages, including future harm, caused by their ongoing, substantial contribution to the public nuisance of global warming.

Posted by dweintraub at 10:16 AM

First, fire all the consultants

"Saigon Bob" (not Mulholland) has some free but harsh advice for his fellow Democrat, Phil Angelides:

At this point in the campaign, I would suggest that Angelides dismiss his pollsters, and most of his campaign management and almost go it alone. Perhaps, he could save enough money to buy television commercials that informed voters about what he would do differently than Schwarzenegger as Governor of California. He doesn't need any more negative researchers or a big press office or even a campaign director. He just needs to go on the road and sell his case, not in hotel news conferences, but in the fields of Delano, and the nursing homes, where people have lost their health insurance.

There are many other issues and strategies which I could suggest at this point, but they would probably be ignored. One suggestion I will make: Stop pointing the finger at your opponent and make positive suggestions on what issues will improve the quality of life for the average Californian.

Posted by dweintraub at 9:41 AM

Reason opposes bond measures

The Reason Foundation and the Performance Institute say the infrastructure bonds would fritter away too much money for ongoing programs and not enough on construction of public works. An AP story is here. You can find their full analysis here.

Posted by dweintraub at 7:59 AM

U-T: No on 86

The Union-Tribune opposes Prop. 86, the tobacco tax initiative:

If state leaders said California must fix a health care system that leads millions of people to seek routine care in emergency rooms, we'd be enthusiastic about having such a debate. If those same leaders said something more must be done to discourage smoking, we'd be interested in hearing their ideas. Nevertheless, wedging two issues worthy of attention into a mish-mash of an initiative is highly unlikely to yield thoughtful public policy.

Posted by dweintraub at 7:50 AM

Bee: No on 88

The Sacramento Bee opposes Prop. 88, which would levy a statewide parcel tax to raise more money for schools. The editorial says this is another example of piecemeal change in an education finance system that needs a comprehensive evaluation and overhaul.

Posted by dweintraub at 7:47 AM

English is good enough, court says

Rick Hasen reports here on the Ninth Circuit reversing an earlier ruling that had held recall petitions had to be circulated in multiple languages.

Posted by dweintraub at 6:20 AM

Sex offenders, part 1

Schwarzenegger this morning is expected to sign SB 1128, a bipartisan bill on sex offenders that lengthens sentences and monitoring without the extreme residency rules that are part of Proposition 83, which many fear would drive all paroled sex offenders to rural areas.

Posted by dweintraub at 6:12 AM

Shades of 1994

Robert Salladay on the state of the governor's race: is a blow-out brewing?

Posted by dweintraub at 6:06 AM



At Crossroads, a panel of experts and the public debate the future of health care in California. We'd like you to join the conversation.

Daniel Weintraub


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