Strange Bedfellows

The Los Angeles Times on Wednesday had an article remarking on the ‘slow’ response of unions to Proposition 1A, the spending cap placed on the ballot as part of the budget compromise passed last week.

The official ballot arguments have been submitted, and in what administration officials hope is an encouraging sign, the best-funded labor groups opted not to weigh in against the measure. At least not yet.

Frankly, it doesn’t seem that their response has been ‘slow’, but rather that the deadline to submit ballot arguments passed oddly quickly. The real issue, though, isn’t going to be the ballot arguments, but rather whether money is ponied up to run ads against the propositions. I certainly hope that they will.

This, however, is a new opinion for me, as of today. I am firmly opposed to spending caps of any kind, especially spending caps that are put in place after massive, unpopular, and extortion-driven cuts are made to the budget. Even spending caps that account for population growth and inflation ignore costs, like health care, that rise faster than the rate of inflation. However, I’ve had to spend the last week thinking about whether the desire to avoid a repeat budget crisis outweighed the intense belief that a spending cap would be dangerous in the long term. I am no longer conflicted. I am, however, willing to accept that the unions may need time to come to the same conclusion.

A far more interesting part of the article was on the division among anti-tax groups.

In addition, the state’s major antitax groups have split over the measure, with at least two supporting it even though it would prolong the tax increase that the Legislature passed last week. The California Taxpayers’ Assn. signed the ballot measure backing the spending cap, and Lew Uhler of the National Tax-Limitation Committee said he also favors the measure, called Proposition 1A.

“At this point, it seems to be a reasonable restraint device,” Uhler said in an interview Tuesday.

Jon Coupal, president of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Assn., said he was surprised at Uhler’s stance and said his own group would fight to defeat the measure.

“I’m not sure we’ll be able to match the proponents dollar for dollar, but we’ll certainly get the message out,” he said.

I never really expected to be on the same side of any issue as the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers’ Association, even for completely different reasons. Still, the more opposition the better. I do wonder, however, how the public will response to differing arguments against Proposition 1A, one because of the tax increases, and the other despite them.

Addendum: See the discussion over at Calitics.

Advertisements

The URI to TrackBack this entry is: https://msalamander.wordpress.com/2009/02/26/strange-bedfellows/trackback/

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: