My Voting Guide

Tim Wayne's 2008 California Ballot Initiative Voting Recommendations

Here are my voting recommendations for the November election for California ballot initiatives. Candidates and local San Francisco recommendations are coming up later.

I will re-post this again right before Tuesday, November 4th.

Proposition 1a – Yes
Proposition 2 – Yes
Proposition 3 – Yes
Proposition 4 – NO
Proposition 5 – YES!
Proposition 6 – Nope
Proposition 7 – Yes
Proposition 8. – NO!
Proposition 9.  – No
Proposition 10 – Yes
Proposition 11 – YES
Proposition 12 – Yes

Here are my reasons:

Proposition 1a
SAFE, RELIABLE HIGH-SPEED PASSENGER TRAIN BOND ACT
Yes.
I've always wanted to be able to take the train from San Francisco to San Diego. Currently, we can't. And that's retarded. Tax money should be spent on useful stuff, and a high-speed rail line is extremely useful. And a hell of a lot safer than driving. And cheaper and better for the environment.

Proposition 2
STANDARDS FOR CONFINING FARM ANIMALS. INITIATIVE STATUTE.
Yes.
I've always been bothered by the horror stories of factory farms. I think we should aim towards a more humane treatment of farm animals and this bill is written to help get us there.

Proposition 3
CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL BOND ACT. GRANT PROGRAM. INITIATIVE STATUTE
Kinda sorta yes.
I don’t like paying for things with bonds. It’s the worst way to pay for something — we end up paying twice as much, after interest. Plus, it seems this is the sort of thing that should be dealt with by the legislature. But, how can you say “no” to a children’s hospital?  So, color me conflicted.

Can you say no to this boy?

 

Proposition 4
WAITING PERIOD AND PARENTAL NOTIFICATION BEFORE TERMINATION OF MINOR’S PREGNANCY.  INITIATIVE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT.
No, no, a thousand times NO.
The opponents of choice and reproductive freedom, in their never-ending quest to chip abortion rights (and other privacy rights) away around the edges, have succeeded in their latest anti-choice stealth campaign. I urge you to please VOTE NO!

Proposition 5
NONVIOLENT DRUG OFFENSES. SENTENCING, PAROLE AND REHABILITATION. INITIATIVE STATUTE.
STRONGLY YES!
I like this bill for several reasons:
1. I am absolutely against the drug war. People should not be thrown in prison for possession of marijuana. It’s stupid beyond belief. The “war on drugs” has caused far more damage to our country and its citizens than drugs ever have. This bill would turn possession of pot from a misdemeanor to an infraction (like a traffic ticket).  It will save us a TON of money in enforcement.
45,000 California citizens right now in prison for possession of small amounts of marijuana will be released.
It will clear up lots of prison space for actual criminals
The Prison Guard Union is against it. That alone is enough for me to support it.

Proposition 6
POLICE AND LAW ENFORCEMENT FUNDING.
CRIMINAL PENALTIES AND LAWS. INITIATIVE STATUTE.
No thanks.
This initiative removes sentencing discretion from judges. Hey, do you know what we hire judges to do? To exercise  JUDGMENT. This bill automates the process and this sort of thing leads to messy unintended consequences (like the dude who got twenty-five years in the slammer for stealing a slice of pizza from a garbage can behind a pizza joint — as a taxpayer, do you really want to pay for keeping someone in prison for twenty-five years for stealing a slice of pizza? I don’t.  it’s totally retarded.)
This initiative also removes some of the rights of people who have served their time and paid their debt to society. I’m against that, too.
Also, I think lately that police have a bit too much power.

Proposition 7
RENEWABLE ENERGY GENERATION. INITIATIVE STATUTE.
Yes.
I hate to support a bill simply because of who is funding its opposition, but if the Prison Guards’ Union, NAMBLA, the American Family Association, the Klan, Exxon or PG&E are involved with a bill, you can count on me voting the other way. In this case it's PG&E who is, once again, funding a fairly nasty campaign against some type of energy bill. Maybe they think they will lose money if it passes. Who knows? I do know that it is usually a safe bet to stand against them.

Proposition 8.
ELIMINATES RIGHT OF SAME–SEX COUPLES TO MARRY.
INITIATIVE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT.
No. Duh.

Proposition 9.
CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM. VICTIMS’ RIGHTS. PAROLE.
INITIATIVE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT AND STATUTE.
No.
I don’t like the parole hearing reductions. Why take this step? seems needlessly punitive. I’m already suspicious of “victims” initiatives. The unintended consequences of such bills in the past have had a stark, chilling effect on our civil liberties.
If these measures are necessary, let the legislature take care of this. That's what the legislators are there for – to represent us. Let them. This sort of policy should not be decided at the ballot box.

Proposition 10
ALTERNATIVE FUEL VEHICLES AND RENEWABLE ENERGY.
BONDS. INITIATIVE STATUTE.
Yeah, sure, why not?
This is another bill I am supporting based on who is supporting it and again on who is against it. I like the people in favor of it (upstanding green organizations, not the crazy ones) and I loathe the people against it (again, the PG&E).  

Proposition 11
REDISTRICTING.
INITIATIVE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT AND STATUTE.
YES.
I’m in favor of non-partisan redistricting, even if it’s not necessarily in my favor (but as long as it’s fair). And since our districts, which once used to be more grid-shaped, have been gerrymandered into obscenely unfair shapes and this has raised the incumbency rate to somewhere in the high eighties or ninety percent. It’s a system that reinforces and entrenches the status quo. It’s easier to unseat a misbehaving incumbent of either party with a primary challenge if he or she isn’t representing a ninety-plus district.
The people in support of this bill are the ones who are always in favor of transparency, fairness, and good government. The people opposed to this bill are running a dishonest campaign: they’re lying about who is making up their organization, they are obfuscating on their source of funding and they are using sensationalist, misleading scare tactics in their arguments. You know a tree by its fruit.

Proposition 12
VETERANS’ BOND ACT OF 2008.
Yes.
This is a no-brainer. The State government backs housing loans to veterans. These are loans, not grants, so the state gets most of the money back. Win-Win. No one but the crazies oppose it. 

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Skivie
    Oct 18, 2008 @ 23:37:00

    What do you think of this voter guide? http://www.couragecampaign.org/page/s/2008voterguide

    Reply

  2. Timmy!
    Oct 19, 2008 @ 12:06:00

    I disagree with their "NO" on prop 10 (energy). I think it's inconsistent to support a $10 billion bond for high speed rail but not support an energy bill that will help all of us in the much shorter term. I also disagree with their "NO" on prop 11 (redistricting), though I am open to being swayed on that one. I may change it to NO myself, since the anti-side has picked up the endorsement of some non-partisan progressive groups. I'm also in favor of prop 7, another energy bill. They have no endorsement. Other than that, I think their PDF is nicely formatted and easy to read. I think I'll follow their example and do up a PDF when I get my other recommendations written.

    Reply

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