Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's call, in his inauguration speech Monday, for a new partnership "that challenges each and every one of us to serve our state in a joyful, productive and creative way" is ominous in the extreme. For someone who references the "miracle in Philadelphia" and professes admiration for what this country stands for, he has learned nothing. The country was founded on the principle that individuals lead their own lives -- a notion Sacramento has long forgotten. Schwarzenegger was elected on a general desire for "change" and supported by those desiring a reduction of government interference in our lives. Given his rhetoric, his supporters will be disappointed.
I was moved by the new governor's boldness and eloquence in his speech and feel that he will bring us an "era of good feeling."
There are two types of elected officials in California: those who keep their promises when elected into office and those who renege on campaign promises. The newly elected governor kept his promise and rescinded the car tax increase. This may cause financial disaster for cities in the funding of vital services such as fire and police departments. But for poor and low-income people, the rescinding of the car tax spells relief.
Our new governor keeps referring to the tripling of the car tax as a 300% increase. Actually, when you triple something, that's a 200% increase. With all of the budget problems he's facing, I hope his math improves.
"High Hopes on Opening Day" (editorial, Nov. 17) noted that refinancing existing debt with a $20-billion bond would heap California's current problems on future generations, unlike a "temporary" tax increase now. First, most tax increases are not temporary, and second, there could be a presumption in that statement that closing the multibillion-dollar debt would not include painful spending cuts. If the latter is true, then one could argue that California's current generation should not be sacrificed in the short term for a healthier state in the long term, because our state's future depends on the education they receive now. I live in Orange County, where the massive bankruptcy was mostly solved by a bond measure. As a student of economics, I can say that it is unlikely that the deficit could be solved by mere spending cuts and tax increases -- the gap is too wide.
If one would ask Schwarzenegger to define what he has been about politically, he would probably first claim to be an advocate for children. Why, then, is he considering bond issues to clear up the current deficit? Such a solution only borrows from Peter (our children's future) to pay Paul (the adults of today). We created the current financial problems with which we are faced, and it is we who should suffer the hardships, whether they be tax increases or tough budgetary cuts (or both). If Schwarzenegger loves our children so much, he will not saddle them with the bill.
William O. Gaynor