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Posts tagged ‘Jerry Brown’

US West Faces ‘Worst Drought in 500 Years’.


California’s three-year drought could end up being the area’s worst in 500 years, forcing even tougher restrictions on residents who have been cutting back on showers and farming already.

On Friday, the State Water Project, which is the main distribution system of municipal water in California, announced it would not be allocating any water from its reservoirs to local agencies this spring. It is the first time it has taken such action in its 54-year history.

Drinking water for 25 million people and irrigation for 1 million acres of farmland will be affected, Fox News reports. 

“We are on track for having the worst drought in 500 years,” B. Lynn Ingram, a professor of earth and planetary sciences at the University of California, Berkeley, told The New York Times.

Gov. Jerry Brown already had called on Californians to cut back on water use by 20 percent.

The State Water Project typically makes an announcement of water allocation on February 1, enabling farmers to plan what and how much they will plant based on how much water they will be able to use for irrigation. With the announcement that no allocation will be made, some farmers have opted to plant nothing, The New York Times reports. 

Others are planning to drill more wells to tap aquifers, which aren’t regulated by the state. But previous years’ use of those aquifers already have lowered their levels, and the ongoing drought has not given them time to return to normal range.

With fears that California could be in a 500-year drought, officials want water supplies to be preserved in case they are needed over the next several years.

“These actions will protect us all in the long run,” State Department of Water Resources Director Mark Cowin said in a news conference.

The crisis is pitting farmers, city dwellers and environmentalists against each other, but officials are appealing to residents to put aside long-held divisions.

A snow survey Thursday in the Sierra Nevada showed a snowpack of only 12 percent of normal, Fox reported. Reservoirs are lower than in 1977, one of the state’s previous worst drought years.

With forecasts still calling for no rain, 17 rural communities that provide water to 40,000 people could run out of within 60 to 120 days, The New York Times reports.

“Every day this drought goes on we are going to have to tighten the screws on what people are doing,” the governor said.

“I have experienced a really long career in this area, and my worry meter has never been this high,” Tim Quinn, executive director of the Association of California Water Agencies, told The New York Times. “We are talking historical drought conditions, no supplies of water in many parts of the state. My industry’s job is to try to make sure that these kind of things never happen. And they are happening.”

Besides drinking supplies and farm irrigation, the lack of water is threatening the endangered salmon and other fish species. And air pollution in Los Angeles, which had been declining over the past 10 years, is on the rise without rain to clean the air. Bans have been put on fireplace wood burning to combat the problem.

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.
By Greg Richter

States Buck Public Opinion, Offer Driver’s Licenses to Illegals.


Nevada has become the latest state to allow illegal immigrants to obtain a driver’s license — even as public opinion polls show that the great majority of Americans oppose such measures.
A national poll conducted in October by Rasmussen Reports found that 68 percent of likely U.S. voters think illegal immigrants should not be allowed to obtain state driver’s licenses. Just 22 percent favor licenses for illegals in their state.
Critics say the laws encourage illegal immigration by legitimizing the status of those who come to the United States illegally.

“It is a kind of amnesty. It doesn’t given them any legal status, but by giving them a government-issued ID, it helps them imbed in society,” Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies in Washington, D.C.,  said in an interview with Newsmax.

“This is a way of protecting illegals from coming to the attention of immigration authorities,” Krikorian said. “It’s a way of documenting the undocumented.”
In Nevada, Democratic-led lawmakers approved a driver’s license law in 2013. It was signed by Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval, the state’s first Hispanic governor, who considers it a public safety measure, and went into effect at the beginning of this month.

“Allowing undocumented immigrants to obtain a driver’s privilege card will increase the number of drivers on Nevada’s roads that are insured and aware of traffic rules and regulations,” Sandoval said in a statement after signing the bill.

When Nevada began issuing licenses on Jan. 2, long lines formed at the Department of Motor Vehicles in Las Vegas, waiting for the 8 a.m. opening of the office. The Associated Press reported that “thousands of Nevada immigrants” sought to obtain licenses on the first day.

Those applying for the driving privilege cards must show some proof of their identity as well as evidence of Nevada residency and insurance. New drivers must pass a driving test, and pay to retake the test if they fail.

The information provided for the licenses, however, may not be used against them for purposes of enforcing immigration laws, a key provision in a state like Nevada where about a fourth of all residents are Latino.

Other states that have approved similar laws include Utah, Washington, Maryland, Oregon, Connecticut, California, New Mexico, and Illinois, along with the District of Columbia.
Said California’s Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown, in signing his state’s law last year: “No longer are undocumented people in the shadows. They are alive and well and respected in the State of California.”

The climate of permissiveness licenses for illegals follows a crackdown period after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacksthat came in response to widespread fears of foreign-born terrorists entering the country.

“After 9-11, things were tightening up. Now those states that are mainly run by Democrats are backtracking,” said Krikorian, noting that Congress has given leeway through the REAL ID law to states to issue immigrant driver’s cards, but those cannot be used for federal identification purposes like boarding planes.
New Mexico, with the nation’s largest Hispanic population, is one state attempting to buck the trend. Republican Gov. Susana Martinez is hoping to convince the Democratic-led state legislature to repeal the state’s current law, which offers licenses to illegals.She has tried before and failed, but vows to continue.
Polling shows that Martinez has support for her position, said Brian Sanderoff, president of Research & Polling Inc., a New Mexico firm that has polled for the Albuquerque Journal twice on the issue.

“Both times, the polls that we did for the Journal showed approximately 70 percent of registered voters opposed granting licenses to undocumented workers,” Sanderoff told Newsmax.

“I think it’s a significant issue to the extent that the governor is once again latching onto it,” he said.

New Mexico differs from its heavily Hispanic neighbor Arizona, where its governor, Republican Jan Brewer, has taken an aggressive stance against illegals in her state. In New Mexico, most Hispanic residents are natives, tracing their lineage back to Spain, said Sanderoff.

“Most New Mexicans are Americans, born and raised here, more so than the average state,” he said, which likely explains why voters there oppose the law by a wide margin.

The trend could continue as Congress renews its debate on immigration reform this year and proponents continue to push for the measure in more states.

“The push for it is nationally coordinated,” Krikorian said. “There is a broader push by national groups to have more say in the issue. They see it in two ways. First, as a practical matter, it helps to imbed the illegal immigrants in the U.S., making it less likely they will leave. Also, it will be presented as evidence of nationwide momentum for immigration ‘reform.'”

Related stories:

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.
By Andrea Billups

Sheriffs are Refusing to Enforce New Gun Laws.


By Melanie Batley

New gun control laws are unconstitutional, say scores of sheriffs throughout the country, and they are either refusing to enforce the statutes or have signaled that enforcement will be a very low priority, The New York Times reports.

In Colorado, a law passed by the Legislature that requires universal background checks and bans ammunition magazines that hold more than 15 rounds is being challenged in a lawsuit by all but seven of the state’s 62 elected sheriffs who say it’s a violation of Second Amendment rights.

New laws in other states which were brought about as a result of the Newtown, Conn. school shootings, are also facing resistance, the Times reported Sunday.

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In New York, two sheriffs have said publicly they would not enforce new gun laws, some of the toughest in the nation. In California, a delegation of sheriffs tried to convince Gov. Jerry Brown to veto gun bills that would ban semiautomatic rifles with detachable magazines and lead ammunition for hunting, according to the Times.

“All law enforcement agencies consider the community standards — what is it that our community wishes us to focus on — and I can tell you our community is not worried one whit about background checks or high-capacity magazines,” Sheriff W. Pete Palmer of Chaffee County, Colo., told the Times.

Nevertheless, in Colorado, officials argue the laws are already having an effect. They point to figures that show, of the 3,445 background checks on private gun sales since the law went into effect on July 1, 70 people were denied weapons.

“Particularly on background checks, the numbers show the law is working,” Eric Brown, a spokesman for Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, told the Times.

Police chiefs in the state, particularly in urban areas, agree that the new laws are making an impact, saying most gun stores have stopped selling high-capacity magazines for personal use, though some continue to do so illegally.

Law enforcement officials, however, acknowledge that sheriffs have wide discretion in enforcing state laws. And while sheriffs could be removed for refusing to enforce state statutes, one expert suggests that many governors could be reluctant to use such powers.

“In my oath it says I’ll uphold the U.S. Constitution and the Constitution of the State of Colorado,” Sheriff John Cooke of Weld County told the Times. “It doesn’t say I have to uphold every law passed by the Legislature.”

Related stories:

Gun Advocate Pratt: Bloomberg’s Anti-Gun Effort ‘Arrogant’

Sports Group’s Lawsuit Fails to Stop Conn. Gun Control Law

© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Three-Parent Families—the Gay Agenda’s Trojan Horse—Legalized in California.


 

young girl
The legislation allowing children in California to have three parents will come into effect at the beginning of next year. (mokra/rgbstock.com)

Children in California will be able to legally have three parents under a new law that critics have branded a “Trojan horse for the same-sex marriage agenda.”

The new legislation is designed to cover situations in which same-sex couples have a child with an opposite-sex biological parent.

The bill was partly prompted by a complicated custody battle in 2011 involving a child of lesbian parents who was placed in foster care after one parent ended up in jail and the other in the hospital.

The child’s biological father was initially granted parental responsibilities by a court, but the decision was later reversed after an appeals court concluded a child could not have more than two parents.

“Once we started trying to normalize parenting by same-sex couples and redefine marriage to remove the dual gender requirement, we had to end up with triple parenting,” says Jennifer Roback Morse, founder of the Ruth Institute, which seeks to promote traditional marriage.

The legislation, signed by Gov. Jerry Brown, will come into effect at the beginning of next year, making California the fifth state in America to pass such a law.

The bill was sponsored by the National Center for Lesbian Rights and by the Children’s Advocacy Institute at San Diego School of Law.

Brad Dacus, president of the Pacific Justice Institute, says, “This is, in the long run, going to be a mistake.”

He adds, “The ones who are going to pay the price are not the activists, but it’s going to be children, who will see greater conflict and indecision over matters involving their well-being.”

Dacus says having more than two legal parents will create the potential for greater conflict over what is best for a child and will result in more complicated court fights.

In 2010, a lesbian mother in the U.K. lost a bitter custody battle with the homosexual man who fathered her two children through artificial insemination.

Norman Wells, director of the Family Education Trust, previously warned, “It’s always a recipe for disaster to try and create children to order by artificial means to satisfy the desires of natural parents who are unrelated and lack a shared commitment to parenting.”

Source: CHARISMA NEWS.

Brown Vetoes Bill Banning Semi-automatic Rifles.


California Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed a bill Friday that would have imposed the nation’s toughest restrictions on gun ownership, saying it was too far-reaching.

The legislation would have banned future sales of most semi-automatic rifles that accept detachable magazines, part of a firearms package approved by state lawmakers in response to mass shootings in other states.

It was lawmakers’ latest attempt to close loopholes that have allowed manufacturers to work around previous assault weapon bans. Gun rights groups had threatened to sue if the semi-automatic weapons ban became law.

“I don’t believe that this bill’s blanket ban on semi-automatic rifles would reduce criminal activity or enhance public safety enough to warrant this infringement on gun owners’ rights,” the Democratic governor wrote in his veto message.

He also noted that California already has some of the nation’s strictest gun and ammunition laws.

Democratic Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, who proposed the measure, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The bill sought to ban the sale of assault rifles, but Brown objected that it also would have applied to low-capacity weapons commonly used for hunting, firearms training and target shooting, and some historical and collectible firearms. Brown also didn’t want thousands of legal gun owners to have to register their existing weapons as assault rifles and be blocked from selling or transferring the weapons.

The governor’s actions were a mixed bag for both gun rights groups and those seeking greater restrictions.

He signed a measure from Democratic Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner which bans kits that allow people to turn regular ammunition magazines into high-capacity magazines, as well as two other pieces of legislation that restrict the ability of mentally ill people to possess firearms.

Brown approved a measure making California the first state to impose a statewide ban on lead bullets for all types of hunting. Hunting with lead bullets already is prohibited in eight counties with endangered California condors. About two dozen states also have partial bans, most in sensitive wildlife refuges.

But he vetoed other bills including measures giving several San Francisco-area communities special authority to regulate weapons and gun shows, as well as several other bills he said went too far to restrict the sale or possession of certain types of handguns or shotguns.

Some of the new laws could trigger legal challenges.

Gun owners’ rights groups have said they also could consider mounting recall campaigns or election-year challenges against Democratic lawmakers who voted for the gun bills. Final votes on the legislation occurred last month, just as two Colorado state lawmakers were recalled for supporting tougher gun laws in that state.

Related Articles:

Jerry Brown Vetoes Bill to Allow Non-citizens on Juries

Obama Renews Push for Gun Control Legislation
 

© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Source: NEWSmax.com

The Ruse Of True Federalism In The Hands Of The Profiteering Elites! By Jaye Gaskia.


By Jaye Gaskia

‘True Federalism’ has over the years and decades become the swan song of every ‘progressive’ politician, activists and revolutionaries alike! But what is true federalism? Does true federalism mean the same thing to each of these categories of social forces and social formations? What does it mean to so-called progressive politicians? What does it mean to activists and active citizens? And what does it mean to revolutionaries?

Let us illustrate with two of the most recent, but also recurring examples. On Local Government governance; progressive politicians have been united with their conservative counterparts on rejection of what is referred to in popular discourse as ‘Local Government autonomy’. So in this particular instance they insist that everything that has to with the running of local governments should be left exclusively to the states to manage. On the surface of it, this makes sense, and sounds commonsensical. But we also know that in practical terms, in reality, common sense is not always that common, and what sounds commonsensical, is not always factual.

What do we mean? In our own context, we operate a Federation, and Federal constitution, where the component federating units are created by the Federal center; where they do not have their own constitutions, and where, they actually do not enjoy fiscal autonomy and have to go cap in hand every month to Abuja to beg for their share [and the LGA’s as well] of the revenue allocation! This is therefore at best a dysfunctional federation and federal system.

In a proper Federation, [and the nature and character of polities, including federal systems, is an evolving one, and keeps changing with practice], where the federal union was the result of consenting constituent units, the articles of federation would have laid down some very minimum standards that every citizen or resident of the federal entity, and every administrative unit of the entity would have to meet, and enjoy. And one would also then expect that the constituent units would then have their own articles of existence or constitutions, which cannot provide less than the minimum standards agreed by the federation. In such an instance, coupled with the fiscal autonomy of the federating units, we can then speak of administrative units under the states of federating components being the exclusive preserve of the federating units, once they meet the minimums agreed in the article of federation.

But here we have a situation where the federal constitution recognizes states as the federating units, but equally recognize three tiers of government, with the LGAs as the third tier; and accords to each tier a share to be agreed to by all, of the total federal revenue. In such an instance, and given the history of the muscling of local autonomy by states, with respect to taking over their share of the revenue allocation, and running them not as democratic entities but as appendages of the state chief executive’s office; it behooves on those of us whose allegiance is to the working, toiling and impoverished majority of Nigerians, those of us who owe allegiance to the content of processes and not just to their forms, to insist on fiscal as well as administrative autonomy of the LGAs within their states! It is important that we insist that they have direct access to their share of the revenue allocation; and that their properly and popularly elected governments are allowed to run the affairs of the LGAs within the bounds of the laws of the state and the federation.

Now let us move on to the second instance to illustrate the issue being discussed. This relates to the minimum wage for workers. Again, progressive as well as conservative politicians and governors are united in their assertion that the question of minimum wage should be left to states to decide, again because this is a federation! Yet, these politicians, as governors, deputy governors, commissioners, speakers, deputy speakers, lawmakers, and aides to politicians all receive identical wages and allowances; even if in some instances there may be additional allowances which may differ from state to state! So whereas a minimum and uniform baseline of wages for politicians is appropriate in a federation, but a minimum and uniform baseline of wages for workers and working people is not appropriate for a federation! What self serving hollowness! Again, those whose allegiance is to ordinary citizens, the majority who are toiling, exploited, but impoverished; those whose allegiance is to social justice and equity, for those people, the question of the minimum wages and uniform baseline standards for workers and working people cuts across the entire federation!

As activists and even as revolutionaries, there can be no difference between our attitude to a national minimum wage regime for working people, and fiscal and governance autonomy for local governments! We cannot have the luxury of saying No to one, and Yes to the other!

There are no such things in reality as ‘Value free Federation or federalism’; ‘value free democracy’ etc. We are interested not just in the end, but also in the means; not only in form, but in content, not only in appearances but also in essence!

The most important thing is that a system and process can only work for a people if their active participation and involvement is not only encouraged, but ensured.

These two examples show us how truly nonexistent is the difference between the so-called progressive politicians and their conservative counterparts. They are one and the same; it does not matter if they are APC or PDP [regardless of its many incarnations].

This is why We must take our destinies into our own hands, retrieve our country from the death and vice grip of the swarm of locusts and Take Back Nigeria.

Visit: takebacknigeria.blogspot.com; Follow me on Twitter: @jayegaskia & [DPSR]protesttopower; Interact with me on Facebook: Jaye Gaskia & Take Back Nigeria
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of SaharaReporters 

The Ruse Of True Federalism In The Hands Of The Profiteering Elites! By Jaye Gaskia.


By Jaye Gaskia

‘True Federalism’ has over the years and decades become the swan song of every ‘progressive’ politician, activists and revolutionaries alike! But what is true federalism? Does true federalism mean the same thing to each of these categories of social forces and social formations? What does it mean to so-called progressive politicians? What does it mean to activists and active citizens? And what does it mean to revolutionaries?

Let us illustrate with two of the most recent, but also recurring examples. On Local Government governance; progressive politicians have been united with their conservative counterparts on rejection of what is referred to in popular discourse as ‘Local Government autonomy’. So in this particular instance they insist that everything that has to with the running of local governments should be left exclusively to the states to manage. On the surface of it, this makes sense, and sounds commonsensical. But we also know that in practical terms, in reality, common sense is not always that common, and what sounds commonsensical, is not always factual.

What do we mean? In our own context, we operate a Federation, and Federal constitution, where the component federating units are created by the Federal center; where they do not have their own constitutions, and where, they actually do not enjoy fiscal autonomy and have to go cap in hand every month to Abuja to beg for their share [and the LGA’s as well] of the revenue allocation! This is therefore at best a dysfunctional federation and federal system.

In a proper Federation, [and the nature and character of polities, including federal systems, is an evolving one, and keeps changing with practice], where the federal union was the result of consenting constituent units, the articles of federation would have laid down some very minimum standards that every citizen or resident of the federal entity, and every administrative unit of the entity would have to meet, and enjoy. And one would also then expect that the constituent units would then have their own articles of existence or constitutions, which cannot provide less than the minimum standards agreed by the federation. In such an instance, coupled with the fiscal autonomy of the federating units, we can then speak of administrative units under the states of federating components being the exclusive preserve of the federating units, once they meet the minimums agreed in the article of federation.

But here we have a situation where the federal constitution recognizes states as the federating units, but equally recognize three tiers of government, with the LGAs as the third tier; and accords to each tier a share to be agreed to by all, of the total federal revenue. In such an instance, and given the history of the muscling of local autonomy by states, with respect to taking over their share of the revenue allocation, and running them not as democratic entities but as appendages of the state chief executive’s office; it behooves on those of us whose allegiance is to the working, toiling and impoverished majority of Nigerians, those of us who owe allegiance to the content of processes and not just to their forms, to insist on fiscal as well as administrative autonomy of the LGAs within their states! It is important that we insist that they have direct access to their share of the revenue allocation; and that their properly and popularly elected governments are allowed to run the affairs of the LGAs within the bounds of the laws of the state and the federation.

Now let us move on to the second instance to illustrate the issue being discussed. This relates to the minimum wage for workers. Again, progressive as well as conservative politicians and governors are united in their assertion that the question of minimum wage should be left to states to decide, again because this is a federation! Yet, these politicians, as governors, deputy governors, commissioners, speakers, deputy speakers, lawmakers, and aides to politicians all receive identical wages and allowances; even if in some instances there may be additional allowances which may differ from state to state! So whereas a minimum and uniform baseline of wages for politicians is appropriate in a federation, but a minimum and uniform baseline of wages for workers and working people is not appropriate for a federation! What self serving hollowness! Again, those whose allegiance is to ordinary citizens, the majority who are toiling, exploited, but impoverished; those whose allegiance is to social justice and equity, for those people, the question of the minimum wages and uniform baseline standards for workers and working people cuts across the entire federation!

As activists and even as revolutionaries, there can be no difference between our attitude to a national minimum wage regime for working people, and fiscal and governance autonomy for local governments! We cannot have the luxury of saying No to one, and Yes to the other!

There are no such things in reality as ‘Value free Federation or federalism’; ‘value free democracy’ etc. We are interested not just in the end, but also in the means; not only in form, but in content, not only in appearances but also in essence!

The most important thing is that a system and process can only work for a people if their active participation and involvement is not only encouraged, but ensured.

These two examples show us how truly nonexistent is the difference between the so-called progressive politicians and their conservative counterparts. They are one and the same; it does not matter if they are APC or PDP [regardless of its many incarnations].

This is why We must take our destinies into our own hands, retrieve our country from the death and vice grip of the swarm of locusts and Take Back Nigeria.

Visit: takebacknigeria.blogspot.com; Follow me on Twitter: @jayegaskia & [DPSR]protesttopower; Interact with me on Facebook: Jaye Gaskia & Take Back Nigeria
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of SaharaReporters 

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