Patterico's Pontifications


California Diversifies in That Time-Honored Way: Set-Asides and Quotas [And a Bonus Story Too!]

Filed under: General — JVW @ 12:21 pm

[guest post by JVW]

The latest advance in social justice:

California has become the first state to require publicly traded companies to include women on their boards of directors, one of several laws boosting or protecting women that Gov. Jerry Brown signed Sunday.

The measure requires at least one female director on the board of each California-based public corporation by the end of next year. Companies would need up to three female directors by the end of 2021, depending on the number of board seats.

Affirmative action as initially practiced, with minority set-asides and quotas, was apparently to the minds of California Democrats such a roaring success that they felt it should be replicated to allow wealthy and connected women to have more perks. And make no mistake, it’s the already wealthy and connected women who benefit from this law. That public school teacher or supermarket cashier or pharmaceutical sales rep isn’t suddenly going to find herself serving on the board of Uber or Tesla, it will be the retired politician, leader of a nonprofit, academic, or business executive who gets the designated female seat. Naturally, the argument will be that these well-connected women will ensure that these corporations provide more opportunities and greater protections for female employees, but considering that women are now overrepresented among the ranks of college graduates I’m not too sure if they truly need the extra boost. As usual, when progressives deign to “level the playing field,” you can bet your bottom dollar that the wealthy and connected are the first (and maybe only) ones who will benefit.

Because Jerry Brown is craven and weak but not mindlessly stupid, he seems to realize that the state is on dubious ground here:

The Democratic governor referenced the objections and legal concerns that the law has raised. The California Chamber of Commerce has said the policy will be difficult for companies to implement and violates constitutional prohibitions against discrimination.

“I don’t minimize the potential flaws that indeed may prove fatal to its ultimate implementation,” Brown wrote in a signing statement. “Nevertheless, recent events in Washington, D.C. — and beyond — make it crystal clear that many are not getting the message.”

This bill was percolating through the legislature since the beginning of the year, and it actually passed through the legislature shortly after Labor Day, so it’s not as if this is really a reaction to the whole Brett Kavanaugh controversy. But why wouldn’t Moonbeam size the opportunity to demagogue on events in Washington? Behold California progressivism’s two ideological pillars: there is no social problem that can’t be fixed by invasive legislation and anyone who sets foot in this state is subject to the whims of the rancid political class that rules the state. Just another day in our increasingly third-world avocado republic.


Anyone recall hearing about Gilbert Cisneros, the Democrat candidate to replace retiring GOP Congressman Ed Royce in California’s 39th District this fall? He was accused by a female party activist of propositioning her for sex this past winter but, lo and behold, as polls began to show the GOP candidate, Young Kim, slightly ahead in the race suddenly the accuser is recanting her allegations, claiming now that it was all one giant misunderstanding. The accuser/activist is a documentary filmmaker, so look for her to have plenty of work come her way from the state and national party now that she has fallen back into line. Believe all women, but give them room to change their minds, I suppose.


42 Responses to “California Diversifies in That Time-Honored Way: Set-Asides and Quotas [And a Bonus Story Too!]”

  1. This should be another aggravating week.

    JVW (42615e)

  2. Whew, that bonus story is interesting. Thanks for providing it.

    Dejectedhead (787359)

  3. they still need to codify that some percentage of these womyn have to be sexual assault survivors

    but you knew that already it’s kinda obvious

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  4. Teh stupid, it burns!

    Soronel Haetir (86a46e)

  5. The CEO puts people on the board that aren’t going to make waves. So this changes nothing.

    AZ Bob (885937)

  6. The CEO puts people on the board that aren’t going to make waves. So this changes nothing.

    You know, this brings up a good question. Let’s say I as a company founder have seven-member board of directors currently with no female directors, but there are two open seats: one controlled by me, and one controlled by my largest investor. If I very quickly appoint a male to the open seat that I control, does that mean that the investor is now the one who has to appoint a woman? This could lead to some interesting instances of straw-woman directors who are being controlled by someone else, or it could lead to a lot of intrigue where appointments are made in order to block other potential appointments. But of course, there’s no way that state Democrats spent one moment wondering about the law of unintended consequences.

    JVW (42615e)

  7. and then the woman director lied about being raped and the company went bankrupt the end

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  8. This law has severe Commerce Clause problems, possibly also federal securities law preemption problems, and arguably federal Equal Protection problems. By “California-based public corporations,” they mean this bill purports to regulate

    a[ll] domestic general corporation[s, and also all] foreign corporation[s] that [are] publicly held corporation[s], as defined, whose principal executive offices, according to the corporation’s SEC 10-K form, are located in California ….

    Arguably the California legislature could get away with this for corporations incorporated in California; but trying to extend its reach beyond those, to all publicly traded corporations with their principal executive offices in California regardless of their states of incorporation, is a big, big reach.

    But this is going to be great for states (like Texas) who are systematically friendly, instead of hostile, to business; and it will accelerate the movement of companies already inclined to leave California, and discourage new ones from moving or starting there. It will also be great for Delaware and the Wilmington Bar Association, long a haven for incorporating one’s business even if the business has nothing to do with, and no presence in, Delaware.

    I again feel sympathy for the sane people of California who are plagued by this dangerous nonsense.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  9. Nevertheless, recent events in Washington, D.C. — and beyond

    What on earth does that mean? Employment for POC is the highest in history!

    Patricia (3363ec)

  10. @ JVW (#6): I see at a glance that the bill’s operative language is:

    No later than the close of the 2019 calendar year, a publicly held domestic or foreign corporation whose principal executive offices, according to the corporation’s SEC 10-K form, are located in California shall have a minimum of one female director on its board. A corporation may increase the number of directors on its board to comply with this section.

    That’s a permissive rather than mandatory “may,” so it’s not inconsistent with the very sort of game-playing to meet the deadline that you hypothesize.

    I’m not even going to get into the gender self-identification provisions or the confusion they might create, especially in combination with the rules regarding seats held by a woman for only part of a year (which, I think, generally still satisfies that year’s quota).

    Beldar (fa637a)

  11. “Packaging” is a metaphor. The judgment as to its applicability to Judge Kavanaugh is exactly that — a judgment.

    I never claimed it to be an objective fact. New rules or not, people here sure seem to enjoy twisting my words, or better, simply making them up.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  12. Sorry, that last (#11) was intended for another post. And it’s just as well I not re-post it there, since it’s troll-feeding anyway.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  13. I identify as a woman when I attend Board Meetings and Cash the checks.


    Bob the Builder (564d53)

  14. @ Bob: I think that might actually literally satisfy the statute, yes.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  15. Forget that! This discriminates against the gender-fluid!

    nk (dbc370)

  16. Patience, nk. Every long journey starts with a first step.

    JVW (cdb359)

  17. A lot of wives are going to join boards soon, I think.

    Kevin M (d6cbf1)

  18. How would you count Caitlyn Jenner?

    AZ Bob (885937)

  19. How is this rule going to be enforced? What is the punishment for failure to have a female trustee?

    AZ Bob (885937)

  20. By the way, the state cannot enforce this on any corporation controlled by the state or any political subdivision (Prop 209, 1996). So, it is attempting to impose rules on others that it is SPECIFICALLY banned from imposing on itself.

    If this is allowed, then it could require all private colleges to institute Affirmative Action, while being unable to do the same thing in state colleges.

    Need to get this into the hands of some “spirit of the law” judge.

    Kevin M (d6cbf1)

  21. Can the state do this without requiring that a man be on every board? How do gays and lesbians count? I’m told they are a different gender.

    Kevin M (d6cbf1)

  22. Section 31 is added to Article I of the California Constitution as follows:

    SEC. 31. (a) The state shall not discriminate against, or grant preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education, or public contracting.
    (b) This section shall apply only to action taken after the section’s effective date.
    (c) Nothing in this section shall be interpreted as prohibiting bona fide qualifications based on sex which are reasonably necessary to the normal operation of public employment, public education, or public contracting.
    (d) Nothing in this section shall be interpreted as invalidating any court order or consent decree which is in force as of the effective date of this section.
    (e) Nothing in this section shall be interpreted as prohibiting action which must be taken to establish or maintain eligibility for any federal program, where ineligibility would result in a loss of federal funds to the state.
    (f) For the purposes of this section, ”state” shall include, but not necessarily be limited to, the state itself, any city, county, city and county, public university system, including the University of California, community college district, school district, special district, or any other political subdivision or governmental instrumentality of or within the state.
    (g) The remedies available for violations of this section shall be the same, regardless of the injured party’s race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin, as are otherwise available for violations of then-existing California antidiscrimination law.
    (h) This section shall be self-executing. If any part or parts of this section are found to be in conflict with federal law or the United States Constitution, the section shall be implemented to the maximum extent that federal law and the United States Constitution permit. Any provision held invalid shall be severable from the remaining portions of this section.

    Kevin M (d6cbf1)

  23. Is Rain Dove, Rose McGowan’s current squeeze, who claims to be gender-fluid (that’s where I first saw the term), a Mounds or an Almond Joy?

    nk (dbc370)

  24. Makes Marilyn Manson seem from earth?

    Narciso (54490f)

  25. Flock of seagulls vampire look, # seems to have released the Asia emails

    Narciso (54490f)

  26. #14 Beldar, when words mean nothing — they literally mean nothing. Even the Law.

    Bob the Builder (564d53)

  27. Great post by the way, JVW. It hadn’t occurred to me that of course the appointees will all be “made women” and not business people of any sort.

    Patricia (3363ec)

  28. @ AZ Bob, from the bill:

    (e) (1) The Secretary of State may adopt regulations to implement this section. The Secretary of State may impose fines for violations of this section as follows:

    (A) For failure to timely file board member information with the Secretary of State pursuant to a regulation adopted pursuant to this paragraph, the amount of one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000).

    (B) For a first violation, the amount of one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000).

    (C ) For a second or subsequent violation, the amount of three hundred thousand dollars ($300,000).

    I suspect it was an accident that they omitted the proposal that male directors be castrated if necessary to compel compliance. But they can always amend.

    OT: Does anyone know how to trick WordPress into not converting a c in parenthesis into the copyright (c) sign?

    Beldar (fa637a)

  29. Oh. Hmm. Perhaps the conversion only shows up in the preview. Never mind.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  30. Wow, that’s poorly drafted. I think it leaves open the possibility that you could avoid the fines by filing the information required on a timely basis, even if that information indicated your company’s noncompliance. That is, I don’t see where noncompliance is itself penalized. Am I missing something?

    Beldar (fa637a)

  31. Beldar–

    Not seeing the whole section, so I may be wrong, but I think that (A) is about ignoring them and (B) and (C) are about non-compliance. It would seem possible for a Board of all women be fined for not reporting to their masters.

    Kevin M (d6cbf1)

  32. The California constitution permits the imposition of administrative fines in those amounts without trial by jury? California really is a [redacted] up place.

    nk (dbc370)

  33. But again, can they penalize a board for not having a female director, yet not penalize a board for not having a male director? How is that not flat-out sex discrimination?

    Kevin M (d6cbf1)

  34. it’s raining here

    big globs of rain

    i have a pretty candle; it smells like pumpkins

    fall isn’t so bad so far

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  35. The California US constitution permits the imposition of administrative fines in those amounts without trial by jury? While “twenty [1790] dollars” may need some adjustment, I think $100,000 is still more that the 7th Amendment had in mind.

    Kevin M (d6cbf1)

  36. Jerry Brown continues to fail in his crusade to lure me back to the state.

    Kevin M (d6cbf1)

  37. The Seventh Amendment has not been incorporated into the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth and does not apply to the states.

    nk (dbc370)

  38. Spanky’s not much of a fan of California either. So tomorrow he’s going to one of the most backward states in the union, Mississsippi, for one of his rallies. Ye-haw!

    Tillman (61f3c8)

  39. snoop dogg always looks so aidsy anymore

    i worry about that

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  40. The Seventh Amendment has not been incorporated into the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth and does not apply to the states.

    It should be.

    Kevin M (d6cbf1)

  41. one of the most backward states in the union, Mississsippi, for one of his rallies.

    I can never figure out why they don’t vote for liberals there.

    Kevin M (d6cbf1)

  42. The corporations I own stock in have shareholders vote on the board. I guess there will be a point where only women will be nominated to ensure one wins a seat.

    Jim (2690d9)

Powered by WordPress.

Page loaded in: 0.2176 secs.