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Keyword: smokeandmirrors

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  • Gov. Schwarzenegger exits with some big successes

    12/28/2010 8:13:41 AM PST · by SmithL · 42 replies · 5+ views
    San Francisco Chronicle ^ | 12/28/10 | Carla Marinucci, Wyatt Buchanan, Chronicle Political Writers
    As he bounded toward the stage to address Californians for the first time as governor-elect, Arnold Schwarzenegger seemed stunned at being catapulted from superstar to leader of the world's eighth-largest economy during the historic 2003 recall election. "Only in America," he whispered to reporters before hitting the spotlight. Only in California is more like it: Arnold Alois Schwarzenegger was still in a loincloth and killing bad guys with a sword as "Conan the Barbarian" in the early 1980s when Jerry Brown was finishing his second term as governor. Only in California could such a political newcomer charge into the governor's...
  • Court blocks sale of state properties, likely scuttling Schwarzenegger plan

    12/28/2010 9:23:59 AM PST · by SmithL · 9 replies · 3+ views
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 12/28/10 | David Siders
    Likely scuttling Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's controversial bid to sell 11 state office properties to private investors, a state appellate court Monday effectively blocked the sale from proceeding until Gov.-elect Jerry Brown takes office next month. Though Brown has declined to say how he will act on the sale, he previously called it "not prudent" and asked Schwarzenegger to delay the transaction until after he takes office. Brown has acknowledged, however, that the state's massive budget deficit would grow by another $1.3 billion if the sale is scotched. The transaction is controversial because it requires the state to lease back the...
  • Dan Walters: Schwarzenegger hands off huge budget deficit to Jerry Brown

    11/12/2010 7:59:57 AM PST · by SmithL · 15 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 11/12/10 | Dan Walters
    Arnold Schwarzenegger came into the governorship seven years ago on a pledge to end "crazy deficit spending." As he exits in January, however, he will leave behind a budget deficit that's just as bad, and perhaps even worse, than the one he inherited from predecessor Gray Davis. And regardless of what else he may have accomplished, that will leave an indelible stain on his gubernatorial record. The Legislature's budget analyst, Mac Taylor, calculates that the sham budget Schwarzenegger and legislators enacted scarcely a month ago – 100 days late, by the way – is already about $6 billion out of...
  • CALIFORNIA: Darrell Steinberg signals midyear budget talks

    11/04/2010 1:11:59 PM PDT · by SmithL · 16 replies
    San Francisco Chronicle ^ | 11/4/10 | Wyatt Buchanan, Chronicle Sacramento Bureau
    A day after California voters handed state leaders mixed messages on how to manage the budget, the leader of the Senate signaled that lawmakers will reopen negotiations sometime in the next few months to close a new multibillion-dollar deficit. Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, told reporters, "It is probably likely there will be a midyear budget session," and said next year's deficit could be as large as $12 billion. It marks the first public acknowledgment by a leader at the Capitol that the budget deal struck in October to close a $19 billion hole was not solid enough...
  • Feds touting National Guard mission in Arizona

    10/08/2010 1:03:25 PM PDT · by mdittmar · 11 replies
    Google ^ | 10/8/10 | AMANDA LEE MYERS (AP)
    TUCSON, Ariz. — Government officials are showing off a site where National Guard troops have been deployed near the Mexican border, despite criticism that they will do nothing to stem the tide of illegal immigration.The first troops began their mission on Aug. 30, and no member of the media has been allowed to see firsthand what they've been doing. Border Patrol agents are set to take reporters to one of several sites in southern Arizona on Friday where the troops are acting as what the agency calls "extra eyes and ears."The troops have no arrest power, and the guns they...
  • CALIFORNIA: At dawn, state Senate still at work on budget

    10/08/2010 8:07:18 AM PDT · by SmithL · 3 replies
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 10/8/10 | Torey Van Oot
    Lawmakers in the state Senate are still one vote short of approving a $87.5 billion state spending plan as a marathon legislative session on the budget approaches its 19th hour. Lawmakers worked through the night on a package of bills aimed at closing the state's $19 billion budget deficit. The Assembly finished major work on the package of dozens of bills just after 5:30 a.m. on Friday, the 100th day of the Fiscal Year. UPDATE: The Assembly adjourned shortly before 6:20 a.m. . . .
  • Budget plan a temporary fix to California's long-term fiscal woes

    10/07/2010 8:43:13 AM PDT · by SmithL · 6 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 10/7/10 | Kevin Yamamura
    The Legislature can bring California's record-long stalemate to a close today with floor votes on the 99th day of the fiscal year, ending the state's financial woes for the time being. But the pending $87.5 billion spending plan does little to solve the state's permanent fiscal problems and makes several questionable assumptions that could make next year's deficit worse should they fall short. Fiscal experts believe California is already headed for another severe budget mess. "We said they were facing a multibillion-dollar shortfall in 2011-12, and nothing has changed the underlying economics and budgeting of that," said Michael Cohen, deputy...
  • Calif. budget plan relies on accounting maneuvers

    10/06/2010 10:25:18 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 1 replies
    yahoo ^ | , On Wednesday October 6, 2010, 9:41 pm EDT | Don Thompson
    California lawmakers got their first look Wednesday at a proposal that attempts to end the state's record-long budget impasse and close a $19 billion deficit, primarily through targeted spending cuts and a large dose of creative accounting. The deal, reached late last week between Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and the four Republican and Democratic leaders of the Assembly and Senate, does not contain new taxes or fees. Instead, it relies on a series of assumptions and accounting maneuvers that in all likelihood will punt many of this year's budget problems to the next governor. It also includes a plan to create...
  • Sen. Hatch Proposes Border Security Bill

    10/04/2010 1:59:28 AM PDT · by jdirt · 53 replies
    Center for Immigration Studies ^ | oct. 3, 2010 | Janice Kephart
    If you care about illegal immigration, how bout calling your Senators and ask that they co-sponser this bill? Senator Hatch Drops a Helpful and Thoughtful Border Security Bill By Janice Kephart , October 3, 2010 Amongst all the chit-chat by the Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano and President Obama about it being time for Congress to "step up and do something on immigration," Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) has. That being said, I'm pretty sure Sen. Hatch's bill does not reflect this administration's checklist of priorities, but it should. Why? The bill is thoughtful and provides remedies to problems either...
  • Will Republicans live up to Pledge?

    09/26/2010 11:30:47 AM PDT · by Graybeard58 · 48 replies
    Waterbury Republican-American ^ | September 26, 2010 | Editorial
    "Democrats are already tagging the events as campaign gimmicks, which, of course, they are. But in the stunts can be seen evidence that one political party is finally taking seriously public demands for reform and change ... (and ending) irresponsible spending, oppressive taxation and regulation, harmful social policy and self-aggrandizement." Was this a hastily penned conservative response to the Pledge to America unveiled Thursday morning by House Republicans? Not exactly. It's a passage from The Sunday Republican's lead editorial Sept. 25, 1994, after Newt Gingrich's insurgent, resurgent GOP issued its Contract With America. The Contract was a specific set of...
  • GOP Pledge? Or Status Quo?

    09/24/2010 8:27:49 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 17 replies ^ | September 24, 2010 | Rich Galen
    Republican leader John Boehner (R-Oh) and his Republican House colleagues released their "Pledge to America" yesterday. As you might have guessed, Congressional Democrats and their allies in the Popular Press came out swinging: Too broad. Not enough specifics. No promise to cut out earmarks. Nothing new. Blah, blah … blah. Here's what I said (I have edited this slightly to make me sound smarter than I actually was, but this is the thrust) to one of my favorite sparring partners, pollster Cornell Belcher, on CNN last night. Cornell, in your next poll ask this question: Thinking about the Republican's "Pledge...
  • Schwarzenegger spokesman: Leaders have 'framework of an agreement' on budget

    09/23/2010 4:58:33 PM PDT · by SmithL · 9 replies
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 9/23/10 | Torey Van Oot
    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and legislative leaders have reached the "framework of an agreement" to solve the $19 billion budget deficit, Schwarzenegger's spokesman said this afternoon. . . .
  • "Pledge to America" Gets Mixed Reviews from Conservatives

    09/23/2010 7:55:47 AM PDT · by jessduntno · 76 replies · 1+ views
    See BS ^ | Just Now
    House Republicans on Wednesday night released their long-anticipated "Pledge to America" to mixed reviews from conservative commentators. Some pundits reacted favorably, calling the 21-page document an impressive step beyond the 1994 GOP "Contract with America." But others blasted the document as light on substance and short on promises to key conservative voting blocs, such as the Tea Party and social conservatives. "Is the pledge as bold as the Contract?" write the editors of the National Review. "The answer is: The pledge is bolder. The Contract with America merely promised to hold votes on popular bills that had been bottled up...
  • How about this pledge: “I will not swallow any more crap sandwiches”

    09/23/2010 9:15:25 AM PDT · by Notary Sojac · 70 replies ^ | 23 Sept 2010 | Michelle Malkin
    Making pledges is easy. Keeping them? Not so much. Just ask Mr. Hope and Change. The new GOP pledge is fine as far as it goes — especially the upfront acknowledgment that government’s powers derive from the consent of the governed, not from the penumbras emanating from the fingertips of all President Obama’s czars. But actions speak louder than words. And no action bespoke of the gap between conservative rhetoric and reality louder than the hysterical votes of 91 Republicans who voted with Chicken Little Democrats under the Republican Bush administration to pass the TARP all-purpose banking/auto suppliers/life insurance/AIG bailout.For...
  • A picture is worth a thousand words

    09/14/2010 8:33:14 AM PDT · by AuntB · 38 replies
    Examiner ^ | Sept. 12, 2010 | Dave Gibson
    <p>The attached photo is of a female National Guard soldier working near El Paso, Texas, along the U.S./Mexican border.</p> <p>Take a close look at the soldier’s M-16…There is no magazine in the rifle!</p> <p>If anyone still needed proof that President Obama has no intention of defending this country, this should do it.</p>
  • The Audacity of Smoke

    09/11/2010 6:16:30 AM PDT · by libstripper · 27 replies ^ | September 11, 2010 | Mike Adams
    The President of the United States of America is a dishonest man. He is also a poor excuse for a constitutional law scholar. Both of these accusations can be supported by looking at his handling of the recent controversies involving the Ground Zero mosque and an unhinged pastor’s planned burning of the Koran.
  • Border mission 'not unique' for Guardsmen

    09/04/2010 1:44:57 PM PDT · by AuntB · 7 replies · 1+ views
    National Guard Bureau/by way of NAFBPO ^ | Sept. 3, 2010 | By Lt. Col. Ellen Krenke
    Arlington, Va., (9/3/10) -- Almost 1,100 National Guard members are on duty on the Southwest border performing a mission that is very familiar to many of them, a Guard official said today. "This (mission) is not really unique," said Jack Harrison, the director of communications for the National Guard Bureau. "The National Guard has been involved at the Southwest border for two decades." During that time, National Guard members have worked in the counterdrug program in California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. "Above and beyond the 1,200 authorized for this mission, there are over 350 counterdrug personnel (in these states)...
  • National Guard troops to deploy to Arizona border on Monday; they'll be armed for self-defense

    08/27/2010 3:14:55 PM PDT · by markomalley · 25 replies
    Fox News ^ | 8/27/2010
    The first of 532 National Guard troops are set to begin their mission in the southern Arizona desert on Monday under President Barack Obama's plan to beef up U.S.-Mexico border security, although they won't have any law enforcement authority. Authorities would not say how many troops would start Monday, but said waves of them will be deploying every Monday until all 532 are on the Arizona border, likely by the end of September. In May, Obama ordered 1,200 National Guard troops to boost security along the border. California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has said the first of 224 National Guard troops...
  • CalPERS loan just latest budget-balancing gimmick

    08/22/2010 8:45:11 AM PDT · by SmithL · 16 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 8/22/10 | Kevin Yamamura
    In the ongoing budget stalemate, Democrats refuse to accept devastating cuts while Republicans reject new taxes. Nobody is budging. The longer this drags out, the more likely it is that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and lawmakers will resort to a well-worn playbook of accounting shifts, borrowing and asset sales to close out the rest of the budget. In the past, this has included paying state workers one day later and trying to sell the quasi-public state workers' compensation insurance fund. Such one-time budget tricks delay political backlash but contribute to California's long-term financial instability. They avoid taxes, so Republicans are happy....
  • McCain says he doesn't back 14th Amendment change

    08/13/2010 11:00:01 AM PDT · by Free ThinkerNY · 43 replies · 1+ views
    Associated Press ^ | August 13, 2010 | BOB CHRISTIE
    PHOENIX (AP) -- Sen. John McCain says he does not support changing the Constitution to end automatic citizenship for children born to illegal immigrants. The Republican Arizona senator told The Associated Press that despite the current flurry of news stories on the topic and a statement he made last week that was widely interpreted as saying he supported hearings on the matter, he remains unconvinced that such a change is needed.