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Real public servants are free enterprising individuals who, inspired, embrace challenge, take risks, and create, sometimes big, and often, they create jobs in the process, all out of their ideas, and self initiative...

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Found an even better quote from Greenhut's piece on why No on 22: "Remember that redevelopment agencies are not local agencies. Legally, they are state agencies, although they are managed by local officials. If Prop. 22 passes, these agencies will get protection from state “raids” on their finances, which makes them largely unaccountable: the locals can’t control their abuses because they are state agencies, and the state can’t grab their money because they are local agencies. They apparently want it both ways."

Prop. 22 protects corporate welfare

AUG. 23, 2010

It’s always entertaining watching various tax consumers fight with one another over a shrinking revenue pie, which makes the Proposition 22 campaign a spectacle. Despite the chatter from supporters about “saving local services” and stopping Sacramento from “raiding” local treasuries, this November initiative simply pits different government groups against each other to save their resources.

The main beneficiaries if the initiative passes: developers who receive tax subsidies to build their so-called “redevelopment” projects and bureaucrats who like to micromanage land use in their cities. This one is an easy “no” vote for any number of reasons.

Prop. 22, the Local Taxpayer, Public Safety and Transportation Protection Act, “prohibits the state, even during a period of severe fiscal hardship, from delaying the distribution of tax revenues for transportation, redevelopment or local government projects and services,” according to the attorney general’s ballot description. In simple English, the measure would stop the state government from diverting money from redevelopment and transportation agencies to the general fund – no matter what disastrous fiscal mess the state finds itself in.

Both sides are trying to depict themselves as advocates of some sacred principle such as local control, but this is nothing more than various groups fighting to preserve their budgets by throwing other budgets overboard. Keep that in mind as you sort through all the campaign mailers that will soon be coming your way. Virtually all these government groups would love to simply raise everyone’s taxes to preserve their programs and pensions – but in this case they are fighting each other rather than ganging up to fleece taxpayers.

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Botched Paramilitary Police Raids: An Epidemic of "Isolated Incidents"

"If a widespread pattern of [knock-and-announce] violations were shown . . . there would be reason for grave concern." —Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, in Hudson v. Michigan, June 15, 2006. An interactive map of botched SWAT and paramilitary police raids, released in conjunction with the Cato policy paper "Overkill: The Rise of Paramilitary Police Raids," by Radley Balko. What does this map mean? How to use this map View Original Map and Database

Key

Death of an innocent. Death or injury of a police officer. Death of a nonviolent offender.
Raid on an innocent suspect. Other examples of paramilitary police excess. Unnecessary raids on doctors and sick people.
The proliferation of SWAT teams, police militarization, and the Drug War have given rise to a dramatic increase in the number of "no-knock" or "quick-knock" raids on suspected drug offenders. Because these raids are often conducted based on tips from notoriously unreliable confidential informants, police sometimes conduct SWAT-style raids on the wrong home, or on the homes of nonviolent, misdemeanor drug users. Such highly-volatile, overly confrontational tactics are bad enough when no one is hurt -- it's difficult to imagine the terror an innocent suspect or family faces when a SWAT team mistakenly breaks down their door in the middle of the night. But even more disturbing are the number of times such "wrong door" raids unnecessarily lead to the injury or death of suspects, bystanders, and police officers. Defenders of SWAT teams and paramilitary tactics say such incidents are isolated and rare. The map above aims to refute that notion.

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