Okay, the budget mess in California is getting ridiculous.  Because the legislature couldn’t come up with something that they could pass — really, that whole two-thirds thing really needs to go! — or that the governor would sign, they just added a couple of billion to the deficit.  Why?  Because IOUs have interest attached, and some 28 thousand IOUs will go out by the end of July.  The Orange County courts will close one Friday a month, and state workers are looking at a third unpaid furlough Friday every month.  Every level of education is girding themselves for deeper cuts.  Already, there have been pay cuts of up to 8%, and a hard freeze on hiring.  

But closer to home, it means that my neighbor may not have a job next year.  It means that until that contract for my two classes in the fall comes in the mail, I’m worried.  I don’t know if my classes will be cut, despite the fact that they are transfer classes.  Despite the fact that they are full every semester, and this past year, community colleges have seen their enrollments go way up.  

Look, it shouldn’t be this hard.  Perhaps it’s time to think about the hard choices. Like, oh, cutting the salaries of lawmakers (really, $133 thousand?  for THIS?!).  Maybe the UC system should rethink paying Yudof over $700,000 a year.  Is anyone worth that kind of money?  And don’t get me started on the unions.  Don’t get me wrong…unions have a place and a purpose.  But when universities can’t hire students to do yard work, because the union complains, or a teacher can’t be fired despite obvious problems because of union rules, there’s a problem.  When unions, not taxpayers, set the agenda, that’s a problem.

And more importantly, someone has to stand up and say that yes, indeed, the sacred cow of California, Proposition 13, needs to be overturned.  The cow has outlived its usefulness, and it’s time to BBQ the damned thing.  With some really good marinade…maybe union tears?

Just saying.

Published in: on July 2, 2009 at 11:42 pm  Leave a Comment  

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