Patterico's Pontifications


California State Assembly Speaker: Republicans Have Been Subjected to “Terrorism” by Voters

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 10:58 am

California Assembly Speaker Karen Bass (a Democrat) (of course), replying to a question by L.A. Times interviewer Pattt* Morrison:

Q: How do you think conservative talk radio has affected the Legislature’s work?

A: The Republicans were essentially threatened and terrorized against voting for revenue. Now [some] are facing recalls. They operate under a terrorist threat: “You vote for revenue and your career is over.” I don’t know why we allow that kind of terrorism to exist. I guess it’s about free speech, but it’s extremely unfair.

Excuse me? The Republicans signed a pledge not to raise taxes. There is no justification for going back on that pledge, because California has a spending problem and not a revenue problem.

So it’s “terrorism” to hold elected officials to their word??

She “guesses” it’s about free speech, but it’s “extremely unfair”?

This is the sort of attitude we’re seeing in Sacramento. They want to do what they want to do (raise taxes ad infinitum) — and they’re so very irritated at having to deal with petty annoyances like their signed pledges, and the voters’ wishes.

Thanks to Pat C.

46 Responses to “California State Assembly Speaker: Republicans Have Been Subjected to “Terrorism” by Voters”

  1. Voters terrorize? Yeah, right.

    These word from SEIU don’t amount to terrorist threats, but they are certainly direct threats:

    Budget Bully:Union Official Threatens Lawmakers

    ManlyDad (060305)

  2. This is just a natural extension of the Leftists calling speech that disagrees with theirs hate speech, racism, homophobia, et al

    JD (b6cfbe)

  3. This turns the previousaly received wisdom about criticism on its head.

    Previously those who criticized an idiot like Karen Bass, or the Republicans who’ve gone back on their promises, would be violating the right to free speech.

    Now we can condemn the right to free speech itself as unfair, and those who exercise it are terrorists.

    Patrick (934d5a)

  4. I didn’t think anyone could be a worse speaker than Fabien Nunez, but I was obviously wrong. It irritated me to no end after the May election that Bass said the voters of CA were “confused” and “misled” by the language on the ballot. How hard is it to understand NO tax increases and NO new taxes? All they’re doing is plugging their fingers in their ears and going, “Lalalala, we can’t hear you!”

    I’m so disgusted with the Legislature, more than I am with the governor. What I’d like to tell the legislature to do with their taxes/increases is not fit for polite company.

    wherestherum (d413fd)

  5. How ironic one in such a high place of state government is bitterly attributing freedom of speech, well, to, freedom of speech. I would think by default, one in such a position would hold all of our freedoms in much higher value.

    Her prejudice is very unbecoming.

    Dana (8d88ef)

  6. happyfeet – What say you?

    By this mental midget’s standards, the citizens of CA have been subjected to economic terrorism by the Dems policies for decades now.

    JD (b6cfbe)

  7. _______________________________________

    I’m so disgusted with the Legislature, more than I am with the governor.

    But you also have to blame we the voters of California for favoring a preponderance of “lefty” politicians and policymaking for over 15 years. And we pushed Schwarzenegger to the left, or encouraged him to become even squishier ideologically, by resoundingly voting down his reform measures, per below.

    So the people of California (aka “Golden State”—and a round of snickering towards that title seems appropriate right about now) need to look in the mirror and proclaim:

    The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, But in ourselves, November 2005

    California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger lost his bid to push through a broad package of government reforms in a special off-year election on Tuesday that he called in an attempt to flex his political muscles.

    With more than 85 percent of the votes counted, Schwarzenegger trailed on all four of the initiatives he had championed, and four other measures also appeared to have lost.

    As a result, the most expensive special election in California history — at least $300 million including advertising and administering the poll — appeared to have failed to change public policy and left the Republican governor wounded a year ahead of his reelection bid.

    Schwarzenegger was soundly beaten on two of the most substantive of his policy measures: Proposition 76, which would have limited increases in state spending, and Proposition 77, which would take power to draw legislative districts away from legislators and give it to a panel of retired judges.

    His strongest showing came on Proposition 75, a bid to curb the influence of public-employee unions over state government by requiring union officials to seek permission from members before spending their dues on political causes.


    Mark (411533)

  8. I think Karen Bass must be related to DCSCA. The thinking, or lack thereof, is very similar.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  9. It’s like the word “nazi.” If you keep defining things down, it gives a pass to the real thing (or makes it more acceptable).

    So “terrorism” is now a fear that voters won’t vote for you if you do not honor a pledge?


    On the other hand, I will bet cash money that this nimrod would object to someone describing a suspected jihadi as a “terrorist.”

    It takes me back to Yeats:

    Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
    Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
    The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
    The ceremony of innocence is drowned.
    The best lack all conviction, while the worst
    Are full of passionate intensity.

    Yeah, he wrote it in response to WWI, but it sure seems applicable to our modern political doublethink.

    Eric Blair (acade1)

  10. So it’s “terrorism” to hold elected officials to their word?? Great canard. Of course it’s pigheaded to ignore a changing socioeconomic situation in California as people nd industries flee and the demand for social services rise. California’s government employees could start by policing themselves. Example- The Mercury News reported the following:

    San Jose firefighters…have been ranked the third-highest paid in California behind Oakland and Los Angeles. Top-scale base annual salaries range from $98,238 for firefighters to $157,602 for battalion chiefs, though automatic overtime and financial benefits boost annual earnings well beyond that. City records provided to the Mercury News show the highest-paid firefighter made $209,848 last year, while the highest-earning battalion chief collected $284,245.

    Who says you can’t make any money working for the government.

    Eliminating all perks and indexing all city and state salaries against the mean national income of the U.S. would be a great place to start cutting the cost of govenment in California. The mean nat’l income was last measured at a little over $50,000/year.

    DCSCA (9d1bb3)

  11. This voting thing really annoys legislators. Imagine: having to repeatedly get the consent of the governed. Too bad we can’t just have a Supreme Leader who appoints all the candidates so that they are all properly progressive.

    Kevin Murphy (0b2493)

  12. Mark, #7

    Oh, I do blame the voters to a certain extent. I blame them for being too lazy to actually get more information on ballot measures instead of simply voting the way commercials tell them to. The only thing that hinders me a little in completely laying the blame on the voters is the gerrymandered districts. I live in LA and it’s damn near impossible if not totally so to elect a conservative to any office. Or to even unelect any official for that matter. Even then, I think the blue side of the state greatly outnumbers the red side. When the unions stop voting for these corrupt people (yeah, like that’s ever going to happen since the unions are the ones abetting in the corruption) then I’ll think the people of CA are serious.

    wherestherum (d413fd)

  13. I enjoy to see California prosper under the wise leadership of California Assembly Speaker Karen Bass and urge all Californians to join with her in reconceptualizing voters as violent insurgents.

    happyfeet (e8d590)

  14. I’m sure Patt Morrison called her on it.

    Alta Bob (851ed8)

  15. Oh, I do blame the voters to a certain extent.

    I fault them pretty much entirely — referring to certainly all those registered “D”, or “independent,” not to mention a very squishy “R”, and who vote with the logic and emotion of teenage kids (ie, “I’m liberal, therefore I am”) — except for the rare moment of sanity several years ago when they recalled Gray Davis and replaced him with Arnold Schwarzenegger.

    Imagine how much more unhinged and irresponsible Calif state government would be today if it were being managed by both a “lefty” legislature and an out-and-out, flat-out “lefty” governor.

    I blame them for being too lazy to actually get more information on ballot measures

    I don’t think it’s their laziness as much as their tendency to, again, be in love with the notion of “I’m liberal, therefore I am,” and vote accordingly.

    If you’ve observed the “lefty” biases in the people around you — in your immediate family, in-laws, friends, co-workers, neighbors, acquaintances — (and in yourself on occasion too), you should understand what I’m talking about. I know whenever I’ve been nonsensical or naive, if not outright foolish, regarding some issue, idea or person, it’s often sprung forth from the “lefty” side of my own thinking.

    Mark (411533)

  16. Ah, our friends the Dems. No longer will they use the word “terrorism” to discuss the threat of Islamic extremists who wish to subjugate the world to their nasty ideology, but they are more than happy to use it to describe citizens who peacefully petition their legislators for redress.

    JVW (a8c610)

  17. While stationed at Travis AFB, Fairfield, Ca in ’65 and ’66 a San Francisco tv station did a story on a local prison work release program.
    The guy that was focused on worked for a local sign company.
    The prison kitchen packed a lunch for him, a prison van took him to work and picked him up that afternoon.
    His take home pay was almost 200 bucks a week, not bad money anywhere in those days.
    As an AF s/sgt with 12 yrs active duty my base pay was $237 a MONTH.

    Joseph Brown (c51f84)

  18. Mark, #15

    I think in general most voters are apolitical and don’t really tend to identify left/right/middle. Looking at my own friends and family, the ones who aren’t outright leftists are apolitical. (I do have a couple right wing relatives as well.) But I do agree that because most voters lean to the left, they’re easily influenced by the “feel good” manipulations used by those always seeking more gov’t intervention and higher taxes.

    For example, school bonds are always “for the children.” God forbid class sizes increase because it’ll “hurt the children.” So, because it’s always “for the children,” school bond after school bond gets passed. And most voters don’t know that bonds are borrowed money and eventually need to be paid back. MediCal, disability, etc., all can’t be cut because it’ll hurt (insert special interest group here). I’m sick to death of the CA Teachers Union commercials by Barbara Kerr or whoever constantly whining about how education is always getting cut. Considering that education is the majority of the budget, it makes no sense to me that the schools have no money.

    Maybe it’s ignorance more than laziness. Our public education system doesn’t teach kids how to be successful in life. And I say this as a graduate of LAUSD.

    wherestherum (d413fd)

  19. #7 Comment by Mark — 6/28/2009 @ 11:49 am

    I remember my girlfriend’s mother taking great pride in calling me up to brag about how she “bitch slapped” Arnie by voting NO on all his propositions. I then asked her what each of those props were about. She had no clue. She voted against him because he was a Rethuglican. I then went through each of them and asked her how she would have voted had she bothered to read them. Sh answered that she would have voted for each of them once she was aware of what each one would have done. So I blame her and all the other stupid sheep who vote for the letter rather than the legislation or the policy.

    Have I ever voted for a Democrat? Yes. There have been occasions where a Democrat was more in line with what I believed to be correct than his Republican opponent. It doesn’t happen often though.

    I just wish there was a Conservative party as the Republicans are way to squishy for me.

    Jay Curtis (8f6541)

  20. wherestherum (1:31 pm), the moment I lost all hope for Governor Schwarzenegger is when he came up with the famous line that bond money “is a gift from the future.”

    What’s ironic too is that school bonds tend to pass in districts that are generally affluent, even if they are more moderate to conservative in political leaning, but they seem to fail more often in low-income districts that are politically very liberal. Further proof that the left mostly likes spending other people’s money.

    JVW (a8c610)

  21. Most Liberals are mentally ill. Why this would surprise anyone is beyond me.

    HeavenSent (1e97ff)

  22. Brian Garst over at Conservative Compendium had this story yesterday.

    John (86bb62)

  23. Someone, anyone, please show me any state government in these United States that has succumbed to defaulting on debt obligations.

    At least two complete generations have grown up hearing mean Republicans warning about profligacy, yet have never, ever, ever, seen real consequence. Somehow, any time there may be a real reckoning, debt is floated and business proceeds as usual.

    Why would a sane and rational person believe that the day will ever come when the consequences will be brought to bear? After what we’ve witnessed in Washington since October, on what basis would an average semi- or completely ignorant voter fear that his state was not too big to fail?

    As Neal Boortz has lamented for years, this is the product of decades of “government school” education.

    Pogo had it right, too. “We have met the enemy and he is us.”

    Ed from SFV (dde255)

  24. Karen Bass is such a diehard Democrat she can’t even use the word “Taxes”. She must use liberal-speak so she calls it “Revenue”.

    Filthy scumbag liberal – that is what I call demicrats like Karen Bass.

    AJ Lynch (e54992)

  25. gosh….. all that free speech and abiding by signed pledges stuff is just so- disturbing!

    Asrai (f9d761)

  26. Well now you know how the dhimmies will justify arresting you people who will not go along with the dhimmie program. You are officially terrorists.

    Off to the gulag with you, after a sghow trila of course.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  27. At least two complete generations have grown up hearing mean Republicans warning about profligacy, yet have never, ever, ever, seen real consequence.

    I guess the increasing federal, state, local taxes and fees, sales, infrastructure usage and property taxes are of no consequence when you don’t pay taxes.

    I know in NY, between all the above the rates are somewhere north of 70%.

    “Mean” is better than infantile morons with beggar they neighbor mindset.

    HeavenSent (1e97ff)

  28. I need to remember all this nonsense next time I hear about McCarthy from some wit infant lib..

    HeavenSent (1e97ff)

  29. For example, school bonds are always “for the children.”

    And as another example of how the voters must take a lot of blame for the mess they’re in, the electorate of Los Angeles in 2008 approved for the third (3rd!) time in only a few years a huge bond measure, involving billion of dollars for new school construction and repair. This after their previously voting “yes” on 2 other school-bond measures entailing BILLIONS (repeat: BILLIONS) of dollars for similar projects, which as of late 2008 already had been spent.

    An example of how foolish — of how leftwing-loony — the electorate is, certainly in LA, if not in Calif in general? Even the Los Angeles Times, no less, recommended that people vote against the LA Unified School District’s most recent bond measure. But the one time — the one time! — they should have listened to an otherwise often unreliable and unwise voice, they didn’t.

    Sh answered that she would have voted for each of them once she was aware of what each one would have done.

    That’s surprising, because based on the way you describe her political instincts, I never would have thought she’d be objective enough to allow a bit of common sense, at least on occasion, to influence her behavior in the election booth.

    Mark (411533)

  30. ^ Actually, I misspoke, because all of the huge amounts of funds approved by voters in 2 previous elections have yet to be spent. That was one of the major reasons even the LA Times recommended a “no” vote on the 3rd school-bond measure.

    Mark (411533)

  31. Ugh, this irresponsible rhetoric just hurts the GOP position. That’s really bad; the liberal position must be countered. Someone give these kids their [whatever it is they take] so they can build some consensus and act in a manner befitting their position.

    Terrorism, my hide…

    Harvey M Anderson (a664fb)

  32. In Obama’s economy we all have a revenue problem… none of us are free to go steal money from someone else to cover the gap. We all need to decrease our spending to match the drop. Those who have never created economic value in their life just don’t get it.

    Ray (3444e6)

  33. Some times you wish all this “revenue” seeking folks were on that bus at the end of “Traitor

    Neo (46a1a2)

  34. […] Patterico has a short article up, concerning the Speaker of the California Assembly, Karen Bass (D-LA). It seems that Mrs Bass doesn’t like the idea that elected officials are responsible to the voters. Q: How do you think conservative talk radio has affected the Legislature’s work? […]

    Common Sense Political Thought » Blog Archive » Philosopher-Kings (73d96f)

  35. I’d say that it’s rather simple: if the elected representatives think that they know so much better than the rubes who elected them, they can always demonstrate their political courage by not listening to the “terroristic” threats to their seats.

    The Dana who wonders how Californians can elect the idiots they do. (474dfc)

  36. This country has had the highest level of compliance with tax law of any country in the world. The IRS has had little trouble with collecting taxes and most of the problems have to do with trying to understand tax law. That may change soon. Italy is the best example of an economy that is probably twice as large as the official records show. This has been one of my favorites from Theodore Dalrymple and may suggest a future trend in this country if Obama and the Democrats actually get their laws passed.

    The Democrats either don’t care or are too stupid to understand what makes an economy work. Surely, you would think they can see how countries like Sweden are backing away from socialism even though they have a history of communal living going back centuries. It has always been the practice in Sweden for people to live in communal housing going back to the Vikings. The socialist gene seems to have been there all along but now surprising things are happening. Some of this may be the breakdown of the social contract as immigrants, mostly Muslim, live off the Swedish welfare state without contributing.

    This accentuates the irony that this country, the bastion of free enterprise that has been the economic engine of the whole world, seems to have taken leave of its senses and is going to try an obsolete economic system that everyone else is abandoning. The only country that seems to be on the same path that Obama is choosing is Britain and they are nearly moribund economically.

    If you like California, you’ll love Obama land. The only way to survive may be to learn how the Italians evade the welfare state tax collector.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  37. Why don’t they call them “legislator freedom fighters”?

    jeb2 (394b1d)

  38. Comment by Mike K — 6/28/2009 @ 5:24 pm

    Perhaps Holland should also be added along with Sweden’s pull away from socialism. In light of Geert Wilders’ party winning four more seats in the election, the tides there are also turning.

    “The Netherlands is waking up from a leftist nightmare, a nightmare of tremendously high taxes, crime, bad health care, headscarves and burqa’s, impoverishment, mass immigration and islamization.”

    Blunt examples of the downward spiral such economic enterprises manifest, and yet Obama is still compelled to take us down that road.

    In regard to California, until someone in Sacramento, left or right, speaks up about and fights against the stranglehold of the unions, the taxpayer doesn’t stand a chance.

    Dana (8d88ef)

  39. What is the core problem in California?

    The legislature is more Democratic/liberal than it should be for three reasons: gerrymandering, illegal immigration, and a wildly biased news media.

    California had been one of the primary destinations for illegal immigrants to the United States. Even if those immigrants couldn’t legally vote they still altered districts for the legislature, because the districts are drawn according to the census count of total population. This has given an edge to Democratic/liberal representation in the legislature as more districts are drawn to fit into areas of the State which already vote Democrat/liberal.

    The Democratic edge has given them frequent opportunity to gerrymander election districts, which magnifies their advantage even more. Sadly when reapportionment is due, all too often a Democratic governor is holding office at the same time as the Democrats have majority control of the legislature, enabling them to gerrymander districts with ease. The Democrats (and their allies such as the SEIU) are quick to sabotage any efforts to get rid of gerrymandering.

    This imbalance explains why the Democrats hold such a dominant position the legislature (near 2/3 in both houses) while at the same time Governors elections are much closer affairs. I estimate that the true divide in California is closer to 50/50 than the 2 to 1 domination in the legislature.

    The final factor tipping things, which must not be underestimated, is the lazy, stupid, biased and agenda setting news media. I assume they mainly influence the vast disinterested non-partisan voting public, which in California amounts to the largest bloc of voters.

    Brad (d49774)

  40. I love it when liberals drop all pretense and show their true colors. we’ll be seeing more of this in the near future.

    trentk269 (086ecc)

  41. Karen Bass is the poster-child for a return to a part-time legislature, where they meet for a limited time each year (doesn’t TX get its’ legislative business completed each year in 4-months?) with a two year budget scheme that is passed in even (election) years prior to the Primary Elections, and policy matters dealt with in the non-election years.

    AD - RtR/OS! (766ec7)

  42. Brad, you would like George Skelton’s piece today on how to fix California. I didn’t have to read it, actually, to know the solution is to raise taxes and reverse Prop 13. They have a one-track mind at the Times.

    The real reasons, aside from leftist politics, is the dependence on income taxes. In good times, California has a high income segment of the population that really churns out the money during booms. New York has a similar dynamic. In the days of George Dukemajian, the state accumulated a reserve fund and then rebated excess revenue to the taxpayers. That stopped when the Democrats got so powerful and had a Democrat as governor.

    The second factor is the abysmal behavior of Republicans who chose secure seats in a gerrymander rather than principled opposition. Willie Brown figured them out with a few exceptions like Tom McClintock. Another reason for weak governors is the Bush fixation of loyalty above all else. Bill Jones, who was the only Republican holding statewide office, endorsed McCain in 2000. In 2002, he was stiffed by the national GOP for a cypher named Bill Simon, a sort of goofy RINO in the mold of GHW Bush, whose dad made millions in bond trading in the 80s. Simon went out as a sacrificial goat (a la Jurassic park) and Gray Davis came in sort of like Jimmy Carter in 1976.

    The state energy crisis hit soon after and Davis froze like a deer in the headlights. Arnold was no improvement. Instead of waiting for the 2006 primaries to run his initiatives, he gave the Democrats an issue with the cost of the special election and they lost. If Bill Jones had been the nominee in 2002, he would have had a good chance of winning and a lot of this would never have happened. McClintock would have been better but he was unknown then statewide.

    Jerry Brown really began the slide but Dukemajian was able to reverse it for a while. Pete Wilson was not much better than the Democrats. He raised taxes in the 1991 recession and the state was the last in the country to recover.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  43. True terrorism by the voters is doing to Democrats and RINOs what the voters did to sitting Assembly Speaker and sellout to Willie Brown, Doris Allen, and recalling them to end their political careers.

    PCD (02f8c1)

  44. […] Patterico: So it’s “terrorism” to hold elected officials to their word?? She “guesses” it’s […]

    Sunroom Desk Paperweight Links, June 28-July 4, 2009 cover the California state budget crisis and political fallout | Sunroom Desk (34cbe8)

  45. […] California State Assembly Speaker: Republicans Have Been Subjected to “Terrorism” by Voters – Patterico’s Pontifications, Sunday, June 28, 2009Outrage over Assembly Speaker Karen Bass equating citizen’s rights to unseat representatives or elect different ones with “terrorism.” […]

    Sunroom Desk Paperweight Links, June 28-July 4, 2009 | Sunroom Desk (34cbe8)

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