It looks like I have enough signatures to make the ballot. Thanks to all those who have helped. You know who you are. I won’t tell Barbara! … 5:01 P.M.
Impatient for results of Gawker Kaus Oppo Research Project. Would save me from having to hire someone to tell me the dirt on me. But they are taking their sweet time. … Note to Nick Denton: Is it that I don’t attract enough hits? Sorry! You will have to get Julia Allison to run for Senate. … 3:35 P.M.
Government of the unions, by the unions, and … : Are low and middle-income L.A. residents about to be hit with a big–up to 28%–utility rate increase in order to create questionable “green” jobs for government employee unions? Bill Boyarsky at LAObserved:
It is unclear how this money would be spent. David Zahniser and Phil Willon reported in the Times that the money “would help pay for new environmental initiatives, including more aggressive conservation programs and a solar initiative designed to create 16,000 jobs.” What kind of jobs? The presence of union officials at the mayor’s side is a pretty good sign that they would be union jobs at the Department of Water and Power, whose employees are being spared the layoffs ripping through the rest of city government.
Villaraigosa said the Water and Power Department would hire “green doctors” to evaluate the energy efficiency of homes. The “doctor” would also help residents buy energy efficient lightbulbs and refrigerators. in my opinion, the guy at the hardware stores knows enough about energy efficient bulbs, and Costco will be glad to sell me an energy efficient refrigerator without the city’s help.
Update: Ex-Daily News editor Ron Kaye is all over this issue. He says the plan resembles an earlier, rejected ballot measure in that it
requires the DWP to own and maintain all major rooftop solar installations in the city to create even more IBEW jobs even though it dramatically increases costs to the public, stifles the growing private solar industry …
As a Dem who thinks we need effective, “affirmative government,” I stand in solidarity with Willie Brown:
Over the years, however, the civil service system has changed from one that protects jobs to one that runs the show.
The deal used to be that civil servants were paid less than private sector workers in exchange for an understanding that they had job security for life.
But we politicians, pushed by our friends in labor, gradually expanded pay and benefits to private-sector levels while keeping the job protections and layering on incredibly generous retirement packages that pay ex-workers almost as much as current workers. …[snip]
Either we do something about it at the ballot box, or a judge will do something about in Bankruptcy Court.
Brown can say that because he’s no longer running for office. He notes: “Talking about this is politically unpopular and potentially even career suicide for most officeholders.” [E.A.] … On the other hand, if you don’t have a career …. 3:48 P.M.
Jill Stewart: Meg Whitman used to be a hottie, could use a makeover. … Stewart cites late ex-Chief Justice Rose Bird’s epic glam redo. But did that help Bird (who lost her retention election)? I don’t think so. … 3:27 P.M.
Made first call to try to get into the Democratic state convention on April 16-18. Left message. … They’re charging $60 for Arianna but only $20 for Los Lobos. … 3:22 P.M.
Ricochet, a new podcast featuring Rob Long, Scott Immergut and Mark Steyn, among others, interviews me here. Fun! If only one of them were a Democrat. … 3:07 P.M.
Pelosi is deciding which members of her caucus “will be given absolution to vote no” on health care? I didn’t know she had that luxury. … Do Dem leaders really have votes to spare, or is this a story ordered up by a NYT editor on clever conceptual grounds disconnected from actual vote-counting reality? … 1:33 P.M.