Barbara Simpson, "The Babe in the Bunker," as she's known to her KSFO 560 radio talk-show audience in San Francisco, has a 20-year radio, TV and newspaper career in the Bay Area and Los Angeles.More ↓Less ↑
One word fits everything about California: entitlement.
It suits every level of power in the state from every politician regardless of jurisdiction, the ensconced and powerful bureaucrats, regulators, everyone involved with education, public health, transportation, insurance, medicine and whatever else the state has its fingers in that add up to controlling our lives.
I don’t know about you, but I grew up with the fanciful idea that people have a right to privacy. A family was private, and parents and children belonged to each other, were responsible to each other, taught and disciplined each other and despite the usual, day-to-day conflicts that arise, love each other.
But in California – and increasingly in the country as a whole – you can toss that prehistoric attitude.
Privacy? Gone. Nothing is private anymore.
The Assembly last week passed a bill allowing owners of businesses contracting with the state to reveal their sexuality – lesbian, gay, bisexual or transsexual. Only one Republican supported it. General Services is required to collect data on race, ethnicity and gender. Now, add LGBT.
Parental rights and authority? What’s that?
It hit home with me years ago when I heard the quote of a state school administrator who made the flat statement that when children walk through the front door of a public school, from that point on, they belong to the state.
So, it’s “your kids are ours, get out of the way while we teach them whatever we want. If you don’t like it – tough!”
State law say it’s OK for children as young as middle school to be taken out of school for medical appointments, condom use education, abortion referrals, drug, alcohol and mental health counseling and more – all without the parent’s knowledge. It’s called “comprehensive health education.”
Schools are required to teach about and identify the sexual orientation of people in history and current events. It’s a diversity-based curriculum in K-12. All classes are pro-diversity and woe to anyone who objects.
There was huge controversy in February when it was revealed that a 41-year-old teacher left his family to move in with his 18-year-old former student. They insisted they never had sex until she was 18.
That led to A.B.1861, which would have made it a felony for a teacher to have relationships with students, regardless of age; teachers involved would lose pensions and health care.
The California Federation of Teachers opposed it, as did the ACLU, and the bill was voted down in committee, 3-0. One Democrat abstained, and two Republicans were absent.
The bill’s sponsor, Assemblywoman Kristin Olsen, R-Modesto, said the committee sided with predators.
Inasmuch as politicians make major decisions affecting all Californians, you might think they’re paragons of virtue.
You might. And you also might think elephants can fly.
Consider these, just in Northern California, now.
The newly elected sheriff of San Francisco is fighting for his job.
In March, Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi pleaded guilty to one count of misdemeanor false imprisonment, which stemmed from an incident New Year’s Eve when he allegedly bruised his wife’s arm.
Mayor Ed Lee has filed a brief with the Ethics Committee to have the now-suspended sheriff removed from office. The issue is official misconduct. The mayor says Mirkarimi was in office at the time of the incident; Mirkarimi says he was just </>”sheriff-elect.”
Speaking of elections, current State Treasurer Bill Lockyer, in the midst of scandalous marital issues, plans to stay in politics, where he’s been for some 40 years – in the Legislature, as attorney general and now treasurer.
He’s almost 71. His wife, Nadia, is 30 years younger, and they both have tales to tell. She accuses him of supplying her with drugs and says he urged her to commit suicide.
He says he had no idea she was in rehab for alcoholism when he put $1.5 million into her successful campaign for Alameda County supervisor. He also claims he had no idea about her affair with a meth addict.
She just resigned her post; he didn’t. In fact, he has plans to run for state controller, the top fiscal position in California. He’ll be 73 then, and varied pundits say he’ll probably win.
Then there’s Assemblywoman Mary Hayashi, D-Castro Valley, who pleaded no contest to misdemeanor shoplifting $2,500 in clothing from Neiman Marcus, after first blaming the incident on a brain tumor no one knew she had.
She got three years of probation, was fined less than $200 and has to stay 50 feet away from Neiman Marcus.
Has she resigned? No. Are people marching to be rid of her? No.
Are you crazy? It’s California!
She’s thinking of running for the seat vacated by Nadia Lockyer!
AB-1527 passed in the Assembly last week. It would ban the open carry of unloaded rifles and other long guns. Last year, they banned the open carry of unloaded revolvers.
The Contra Costa Times reported the author of both bills, Anthony Portantino, D-La Canada/Flintridge, said such open carry could lead to tragedy because the only person who knows whether a gun is loaded is the person holding it.
Californians actually pay this guys salary and fund his pension!
The state has the toughest “climate-change” law – refineries are refused permission to upgrade and new ones are verboten. Coal plants? Don’t be silly. Nuclear? Hah! They even want to tear down the dams, to “restore rivers to their pristine condition.”
Now, in addition to cars displaying their smog score, new cars must have a label showing their global-warming score.
Tax-happy lawmakers are now considering taxes on anything that could conceivably cause someone to gain weight, and statewide there seems to be a race to find new places to make smoking illegal.
Judging by the fiscal disaster California faces, maybe the Mayan prophecy of the end of things in December 2012 isn’t really farfetched.