Thursday, September 28, 2006

Taking Advantage of our Gay-Friendly Governor

Governor Schwarzenegger announced today that he signed AB 1207 to add to the Code of Fair Campaign Practices a provision that would demand that candidates not appeal to negative prejudice of sexual orientation. The bill was authored by Assemblyman Yee and sponsored by Equality California after an almost identical piece of legislation was vetoed by Schwarzenegger last year.

While this bill certainly isn't at all a bad thing for the Gay community, don't expect it to help us. The Code of Fair Campaign Practices is a voluntary pledge that candidates may choose to sign. This pledge is a fuzzy, feel-good measure that asks candidates to remain positive and to avoid appealing to racism, sexism, and now homophobia. However, there is no provision to enforce the code. In fact, it would likely be impossible to enforce the code as many of the provisions are so very vague it would be impossible to fairly determine whether a candidate is in violation or not.

The only method of enforcement on the Code of Fair Campaign Practices can be found in the media. If a candidate appeals strongly to racism, sexism, or homophobia, regardless of whether he or she signed the pledge, the media would blast the candidate. A recent example of this is the man who once had his eye on the White House.

In short, AB 1207 won't be helping any Gay people any time soon. In fact, I really think that our friends at Equality California only sponsored the bill to put the Governor is a tough spot. If he had vetoed the bill he would have allowed Equality California the ability to claim he was a homophobic bigot. By signing the bill, he has further alienated a part of the Republican base of Christian Conservatives that Arnie needs to secure his reelection.

It's Getting Hot in Here

This week California made monumental strides in attempting to reduce the effects of Global Warming. Our state is the twelfth largest emitter of greenhouse gases in the world (the largest emitter being the United States) but will be reducing emissions by 25 percent before 2020. Effectively, the new plan will put our state in line with the Kyoto Protocols.

Not surprisingly, the Chamber of Commerce has strongly opposed this new law. They claim that the policy will put California business interests at a disadvantage. While this certainly could lead to reduced profits when the reduction begins in 2012, careful planning should be able to mitigate some of these costs.

The truth is, greenhouse gases are a real issue and we are facing a slow depletion of the ozone. Whether the current increase of global temperatures and frequency and severity of hurricanes is part of Global Warming or a cyclical trend is irrelevant. I don't need to discuss the dangers of global warming as I am sure you have already read all the statistics I could provide and remember the handouts we were all given in second grade explaining how we are going to go extinct like the dinosaurs.

The California business community has had no better friend than Governor Schwarzenegger. In his term, he has refused any increase in taxes and has done all that he can to improve the business climate here. His efforts have helped, too. Under his administration, business has increased here and the California economy is back on track.

This law, while not necessarily pro-business is good for California and good for the world. Some Republicans have argued that it would only be a drop in the bucket that is unlikely to effect any global change and should, therefore, be vetoed. In reality, not only can permanent reductions of California's emissions make a significant change in the fight on global warming, they can reduce smog, improve the health of Californians, reduce health care costs, and provide a model and incentive for other states and nations to follow.

It is time that Republicans either stop criticizing the Governor for his green policies or come up with better arguments against them.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Kate on Sports!

Every old Blue should be cheering a big GO BEARS right about now. Mic Man Kate Troescher is BACK!

Ok...well, so she isn't standing on the platform anymore and I doubt she will be wearing ties to every football game anymore. Still, our favorite Golden Bear hasn't gone into hibernation yet. Her latest project is a weekly podcast about sports.

What has always been great about Kate is that she actually knows sports. In her days at the microphone, she led cheers at the right moments and kept everything going with the flow of the game. Next time you are standing in the Cal student section, notice how often the Mic Men of today lead the wrong cheer for the situation, don't lead a cheer, or fail to successfully lead the section at all. More importantly, pay attention to how many times the crowd starts chanting, "We Want Kate!" There is a reason for this--KATE ROCKED!

And now we can have all the Kate we want on her new podcast found at Even though her new podcast show is about all sports, if I know Kate, she will feature the Bears prominently.

Why do we hate Arnold so much?

No Gay-themed, Republican blog would be complete without a positive review about the Governator. In this election year, it makes no sense why the LGBT community opposes having a Republican governor. LGBT support (and money) should not be wasted on Phil Angelides.

No Governor has ever had as positive an impact on Gay rights as Arnold Schwarzenegger. Yes, I know he made headlines when he notably vetoed AB 849 last year which would have given us marriage equality. Still, he has signed bills that have given us equal rights in nearly every other way. Thanks in part to Arnie, Domestic Partnership laws in California have been strengthened and are now stronger than just about anywhere else in the United States. Specifically, Gay people are protected against discrimination in just about every area of law from housing and employment to service in the California National Guard.

Groups out there like Equality California aren't looking out for our community when they blindly endorse Democrat candidates at the expense of Gay-friendly Republicans--especially when the Gay-friendly Republican is all but guaranteed a victory in the race. Instead of wasting precious time and money on loser candidates against our own allies, we should be focusing our efforts on ensuring that candidates (regardless of party affiliation) are elected that will represent our views in the Legislature. Do we really want another Dennis Mountjoy?

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

A Star is Born!

Yet another anonymous political blog has hit the scene!

Wait...that isn't news at all!!!

Just like everybody else, this blog will provide criticism and praise for the goings on in the news. My goal is to bring you interesting stories and critiques with a spin that you might not have heard yet. More specifically, look for me to bring you posts on my favorite topics: Cal Football (Go Bears!), GOP politics, and Gay Rights.