Plebiscite Time Is Fun Time
The Alameda County Registrar has finally deigned to process my new residency, so I have a question for the lawyers in the audience: I know it’s legal to run around naked in your own home, but does that still apply if your home is also a polling place? Or should I vote in underwear and bunny slippers?
Update: Oh, for love of crikey – what part of “approval of all abortions by the relevant Regional Air Quality Management Board” do you people not understand? These remarks are, variously, allusions to recurring political tropes, hopelessly cryptic comments on the broader role of ballot initiatives in California political culture, exaggerated caricatures of my actual opinions, and total nonsense. I’m certainly not out to convince anybody here, I was merely hoping to entertain.
But, the votes given are the ones I intend to cast. If you’d like to have serious arguments in the comments, that could be fun too; I’m particularly open to discussion about propositions 77-80. And about bunny slippers.
Prop. 73: Abortion Notification for Minors
This is hideously awful public policy. It’s also completely banal and derivative; I don’t know how many other states nearly-identical legislation has been proposed in, but it’s more than zero, for sure. Ballot initiatives are supposed to represent the unique personality of the California electorate – let’s not be afraid to let our inner soul shine through! Maybe we could require notification of a minor’s favorite tree spirit, or approval of all abortions by the relevant Regional Air Quality Management Board, or something.
Rating: F for plagiarism
My vote: No, no, no, a thousand times no!
Prop. 74: Fucking with Teacher Tenure
There once was a teacher from Glucked
Who … oh, never mind.
My vote: No
Prop. 75: A Trojan Pony for Unions
I own little dribs and drabs of nearly every large corporation in the US (yay index funds!). The officers of these corporations are fully empowered to further my financial interests in whatever way they deem best, up to and including attempts to influence the political process with savvy lobbyists and judiciously distributed campaign contributions. I’d rather have this money back as extra dividends, but no – even though it’s my money, I don’t get to micromanage its use. Why should public employee unionmembers get a nice pony when corporate shareholders and private unionmembers don’t? I want a pony!
Rating: A- – fiendishly clever, but it should promise all Californians a pony, not just public employee unions.
My vote: No
Prop. 76: Fiscal Strangling and Autocratic Governator Initiative
Another proposition crafted in the ancient tradition of California budgetary nawa shibari. Until they start tying up the budget (or the legislature) with actual ropes, instead of metaphorical legal ropes, I’m against it.
My vote: No
Prop. 77: Redistricting
I’m guessing, from the responses of those who’re more attuned than I to the universal vibrations of realistic political calculation, that if this measure passes it will cause severe short-term harm to the Democratic Party. Some of the plan’s specifics are poorly thought-out, and a clerical error in the submission process could mean that the initiative is thrown out by the courts. Oh well.
Rating: C- – revise and resubmit for an A.
My vote: Yes
Prop. 78: Drug Benefits from Drug Companies
A mediocre rendition of the classic poison pill: if someone proposes a new law you don’t like, ask that compliance be made optional! Then congratulate yourself for being so sneaky.
My vote: No, subject to the state of the polls on Monday night. If it looks like 78 might pass and 79 is totally fucked, I’ll vote yes.
Prop. 79: Drug Benefits from Well-Meaning People Who Like Absurdly Complicated and Mostly Ineffective Health Care Policies
Something something discount card something, vague language about profiteering, blah blah blah special Treasury fund.
Program administrators can remove a drug from MediCal’s “approved” list if its manufacturer refuses to sign up. Proponents argue that this provision makes the whole thing enforceable – but the law’s teeth are apparently built from the crushed-up bones of MediCal patients, who would be stuck with a lesser selection of drugs to choose from.
My vote: Yes, it’s totally shitty but still better than nothing. I actually do believe in incremental reform.
Prop. 80: Electricity Re-Regulation
Yay regulation! Yay! But as always, there are devils in the details. Confusing devils.
My vote: Abstaining
More California bloggers’ voter guides can be found here.