Archived: To Sacramento: Do No Further Harm

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The residents of California have been holding their collective breath and worrying about what would happen if the state legislature and the governor failed to reach agreement on a state budget.

Well, the cataclysmic day arrived Wednesday with our political representatives failing to pass and get a budget signed. While the sun still rose and we are all still safe — at least for the moment —that doesn’t mean all is well.

The embarrassment of having a Legislature which is composed of Democrats who refuse to compromise enough to make the hard but necessary cuts to balance our budget with out papering over the problem, and Republicans whose only contribution to the crisis has so far been criticize Democrats and stubbornly refusing to consider any tax increase, without any real proposal comprehensive enough to solve the budget shortfall, has left us all in limbo.

As for our governor, his nonsensical pledge to not accept partial solutions to the budget shortfall is one for the world of the absurd. He, more than anyone else, should know that a partial solution for the next year or two is better than the current impasse, that has left the state issuing IOUs that even some banks are reluctant to accept. Since no one knows what the next year or two holds in the way of the state’s economy or the national economy for that matter, it makes no sense to try and forecast too far into the future.

Granted, we must get control of the multi-billion dollar deficit, which rose again yesterday as a result of the state’s failure to pass a budget, but it must be done in a way that will cause as little additional harm as possible. Sacred cows and ideology must be put away until better days.

Our elected officials need to deal with the economic crisis; after all, that’s what we pay them darn well to do. Or perhaps they should all go home as some angry residents have said; maybe they will do less harm.

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