Thursday, June 17, 2010

Are You Ready for the AB 32 Wars?

It really is going to be a war, you know. AB 32 is on the ballot, and could be going down to defeat this November. And those heavily invested in it are in something of a panic.

On the one hand you will have those entrenched Sacramento big money interests trying to prop up a collapsing California economy through state mandated development on a scale never seen before. Backed up by the Orwellian notion that by rapidly incorporating dense urban development into areas such as ours, along with vastly expanding mass transit, we will somehow save the world from global warming. However, since dense urban neighborhoods are major greenhouse gas producers, nobody seems to know exactly how this magic will occur.

On the other side you will have those who support and love the suburban California lifestyle, one that involves single family homes, small low density communities, personal transportation, and the freedom to get up and go whenever and wherever you want. An individuality and spirit that has been a part of life here for as long as there has been a California. Something that apparently now has quite a few very active and powerful enemies not only amongst the newly empowered Sacramento central planning elite, but also those ambitious local politicians who dream of becoming one of them. In Sierra Madre we'll see a few of those at work this evening.

Of course, that is not how it will be seen by many of those going to the polls in November. They will see AB 32 just as it is advertised on the label, that it is a "Green" law that will help save the world. Rather than what it really is, which is an undemocratic and authoritarian centralization of power within Sacramento, and at a level unprecedented in the history of any American state. All painted green and with a decorously civil feel good message that rivals the intellectual depth of your average Hallmark greeting card.

As a dedicated reader of just about anything on the topic, I have noticed a distinct rise in the number of articles challenging the AB 32 myth. I've collected what I feel are some of the better passages on the topic I've seen lately, and I'll share a couple here.

The first quote comes from an article that appeared on Salon.com recently called Goodbye, Trains and Windmills. Here political writer Adam Lind describes the ideological origins of those who would happily turn low density towns such as ours into something approximating the worst aspects of the dense new mixed-use condo zones in Pasadena and Glendale:

The answer is the fusion, in the last decade, of two previously distinct post-'60s activist movements on the left: urbanists, who despise suburbs, and Greens, who despise automobiles and airplanes. Many liberals have unthinkingly treated the goals of these single-issue movements as their own. But one can be a liberal in good standing -- by, for example, supporting a living wage, universal social insurance, and government-backed manufacturing policy -- and still reject the infrastructure agendas of urbanists and greens.

Often we have heard the laughably dogmatic John Buchanan talk with dewy-eyed reverence about "Green Jobs" during City Council meetings here. This being, of course, the promised panacea for so many of California's ills currently being peddled by the dysfunctional Sacramento elite. But is this really the case? On a blog called PROPZERO, which is run by NBC News Los Angeles, that notion is treated with some considerable skepticism.

Hey Jerry, Have You Heard About the Green Job Myth? - - Jerry Brown, the Democratic candidate for governor, believes green jobs are the way out of the recession. According to an interesting study by a Spanish economics professor, though, he might be off the mark.

The study found that for every green job created by the Spanish government, 2.2 jobs were destroyed, and that only 1 in 10 jobs were permanent. According to the study, most of the jobs were temporary -- only 10% were permanent jobs in operations and maintenance of renewable power systems.

Apparently the "green economy" in Spain has been something of a disaster. This is a country rapidly approaching the kind of economic denouement faced by Greece and other bankrupt European nations. The Spanish government staked much of its credibility on building an economy based on all things green, and the results have been skyrocketing energy prices, massive job losses, and near economic collapse. Nice to see we now have people calling the shots in Sierra Madre who want to duplicate that level of success here.

The good folks at the California Jobs Initiative have been alerting people to what exactly the California Air Resources Board has in mind for us. CARB (as the acronymically inclined would have it) is apparently moving purposefully into its new enforcer role as Sacramento's "Green" shock troops. Not only will they be the ones to decide what kind of RHNA numbers we'll be SCAG'd with in 2012, they are also active on many other fronts as well. Here are a couple of them:

Taxes on vehicles CARB does not approve of: CARB plans to institute "feebates" (taxes) on vehicles they deem to cause global warming. Trucks, minvans, SUV's, and sports cars are likely to be targeted.

Imprisonment for not inflating your tires: CARB proposed regulations that your car tire pressure be checked to make sure they are at a state-mandated pressure. Before this proposal was withdrawn, CARB's proposed punishment for noncompliance was a $1,000 fine and 6 months imprisonment.

And these are the guys who will be instrumental in establishing our new AB 32 compliant RHNA numbers in 2012. Want to bet that they'll be through the roof? CARB, by the way, has 1,176 employees, with an average salary of over $85,000 a year. And while teachers and other government employees who actually do some true good in the world are being laid off all over the state, CARB is actually adding hundreds of new highly compensated employees this year. All of whom are anxious to start telling you how to live your life.

One last item. In an article on AB 32 that ran yesterday in The Sacramento Bee, Ben Boychuk, managing editor of the Heartland Institute's School Reform News, gave these reasons for why it simply has to go.

California's Global Warming Solutions Act was unsound public policy when the state unemployment rate was 5 percent and a recession was still 18 months off. But at a time of sustained unemployment and sluggish economic growth, AB 32 isn't just unsound; it's practically suicidal.

AB 32 requires the California Air Resources Board to regulate carbon emissions "in a manner that minimizes costs and maximizes benefits for California's economy," "minimize costs and maximize the total benefits to California" and "minimize the administrative burden of implementing and complying with these regulations." In a word: impossible. But, as always, don't take my word for it.

"California's economy at large will likely be adversely affected in the near term by implementing climate-related policies that are not adopted elsewhere," the state's nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office reported in May. "This is in large part because such policies will tend to raise the state's relative prices for energy, such as electricity."

AB 32's adverse effects on California's economy would occur mostly through "economic leakage, as certain economic activity locates or relocates outside of California where regulatory-related costs are lower." The law encourages businesses that cannot bear the burden of higher regulatory fees and costs to drain away to more business-friendly climes.

And to think of it, the fun is only just getting started.

36 comments:

  1. Spain's torrential spending — no other nation has so aggressively supported production of electricity from renewable sources — on wind farms and other forms of alternative energy has indeed created jobs. The jobs often are temporary and have received $752,000 to $800,000 each in subsidies — wind-industry jobs cost even more, $1.4 million each.

    And each new job entails the loss of 2.2 other jobs that are either lost or not created in other industries because of the political allocation — sub-optimum in terms of economic efficiency — of capital. (European media regularly report "eco-corruption" leaving a "footprint of sleaze" — gaming the subsidy systems, profiteering from land sales for wind farms, etc.) The creation of jobs in alternative energy has subtracted about 110,000 jobs from elsewhere in Spain's economy.
    This is one of the reasons AB 32 must be suspended.

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  2. John and Joe pushing their Green Agenda are nothing more than Little Green Maggots feasting on our city.

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  3. Watch Joe Mosca start to defend the incorporation of AB 32 and SB 375 elements into our General Plan (and at the cost of $300,000 to the taxpayers) as "just following the law."

    Of course, the "I'm just obeying orders" defense is nothing new.

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  4. High density development is to "green" what a parking lot is to a forest. This is nothing more than big lie politics.

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  5. If California voters had all been reading the Tattler this past year, no one (except developers) would vote for this horrible AB 32.

    Most of us Tattler readers (with the exception of John and Joe) signed the petitions against it.

    Talk radio KFI has been really pushing it's defeat, like Crawford, they have been exposing this bill for what it really is, a SCAM, and a very dangerous one for us all.

    Thanks for exposing this Crawford, along with several informed posters such as Laurie Barlow.

    This is what Crawford, Watts and Alcorn and MaryAnn MacGillivray were trying to alert people to. Sadly, their very critical message was naively overlooked by Sierra Madre voters.

    You had all better hope AB32 goes down and gives Sierra Madre time to correct this outrageous error of the past election.

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  6. AB32 and SB375 are the guns being held to our heads to force development. Watch Karen Warner and the Bobbleheads work this angle tonight. Water infrastructure, General Plan elements, Housing Elements, all the pieces of the puzzle are coming together. You'd have to be blind not to see them.

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  7. California is in a depression.

    Commercial real estate is in a depression.

    Los Angeles is in a depression.

    We have loons running California, loons running
    Los Angeles and now loons running Sierra Madre.

    Let's hope Sierra Madre remains solvent.

    MaryAnn can't do it all......we need all of you Tattlers to help us.

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  8. California has become a Loonocracy.

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  9. Don't forget to attend the Housing Element Presentation this evening 6:30 at City Hall starring Miss Karen Warner of RHNA and BIA stardom. Following MS Warner rendition of "Up Yours Sierra Madre", will be Dr. Sami asking the Planning Commission to ignore the city's parking requirements and reduce the required number of parking spaces by 10 cars. These cars will be parked on the Blvd or in public lots and will join the ones from the new eatery formally Steamers) which is expanding and also wants street parking instead of on site parking.

    Spell
    P A R K I N G S T R U CT U R E

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  10. Hey Anon 9:34 AM, Don't forget about the "loon" running the police department.

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  11. Birds of a feather, as they say.

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  12. It's Field of Dreams development. By building all this stuff, will people come? No because "creating jobs" is easy to say, but how is it actually done? Not merely by constructing buildings. Interesting theater.

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  13. Remember when the message from SCAG was that we had to build because of the millions of people heading to California? Guess that one isn't operative anymore.

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  14. Last time Consultant Warner spoke, a resident pointed out that very fact 3:13, but Warner held firm. The population is growing. No more need for discussion. It'll be interesting to see if the same thing is said tonight.

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  15. tattler, fantastic article.

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  16. What is the thing I've heard about our having to build homeless housing here? Would that mean homeless people would have to be relocated to Sierra Madre?

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  17. When is CARB going to fine the auto designers/makers?
    Look, my family conserves energy, we consider the impact our actions have on the environment. I finally even agreed to help in the vegetable garden.
    We make it ok, but we do not have the money to buy a hybrid or an electric car. We have a sensible car, but it runs on gas, because that was the only kind people in our economic bracket could afford.
    So CARB is coming after me???

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  18. Car makers have lobbyists with big
    connections in Sacramento, 3:23. All
    we have are crooked elected officials.

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  19. 3:21, can you be more specific?
    There are requirements for low income housing, but are you talking about homeless shelters, or...?

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  20. It is just what I heard. That we are going to have to find places for homeless people to live. We don;t have any homeless people, so won;t they have to be bussed in?

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  21. The part that drives me crazy in all this is how well intentioned the ideas were originally, and how corrupt the end result is.
    The new forms of incubus/succubus - the development industry.

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  22. For those interested in the homeless aspect to a housing element it is called SB 2.

    This bill requires cities and counties to identify specific sites with by-right zoning to accommodate the community's need
    for homeless shelters, requires cities and counties to identify zones where special needs facilities and transitional housing are permitted either by right or with a conditional use permit,and prohibits a city or county from disapproving application for shelters and special needs facilities unless specified
    findings are made.


    Here is the site:
    http://info.sen.ca.gov/pub/07-08/bill/sen/sb_0001-0050/sb_2_cfa_20070322_161958_sen_comm.html

    also read http://www.housingadvocates.org/docs/SB2.pdf

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  23. That's the thing about bigtime liars. They use good things to sell their bad products. How many oil company and car ads do you see touting the green aspects of their very ungreen products?

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  24. sM dodged a bullet - so farJune 17, 2010 at 3:43 PM

    The fact that AB32 made it to the ballot is a positive.
    Be mighty nice if it was time to undo some of those big time lies.

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  25. Greens tend to be idealistic. Most likely they did not notice that the wolf was snapping up Grandma.

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  26. BP was the largest lobby for Cap and Trade.

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  27. Where do the day laborers in Memorial Park live? Are they homeless, too?

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  28. If they are, maybe they could get rooms
    at Hail Hamilton's house. You know that
    he cares deeply about them.

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  29. How on earth can anyone suggest folding AB32+SB375 into our General; Plan when AB32 may go down in a few months in the defeat it richly deserves.

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  30. Are you kidding? That's what Joe and John were hired to do. You don't think either one of them are capable of independent thought, do you?

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  31. been there, done thatJune 17, 2010 at 3:56 PM

    Reality speak: unless the low income housing comes with COVENANTS it will be up to the highest bidder in no time at all.
    It doesn't matter what people SAY the housing will be for.

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  32. 3:55, the point is to build. All the happy talk about "green," or "homeless" is designed to placate the saps. Messages delivered in a warm bottle with a big rubber nipple on it.

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  33. Speaking of Day Labors Courts ruled Redondo Beach authorities are entitled to prohibit people from soliciting work or money by approaching motorist in the street.

    Go Redondo Beach
    The 2-1 ruling by a panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals overturns a lower-court opinion that barring street solicitation interferes with individuals’ 1st and 4th Amendment rights unless alternative sites are identified where the solicitors can speak and assemble freely.

    Redondo Beach city leaders were sued by the National Day Laborer Organizing Network after they passed an ordinance in 2004 prohibiting solicitors from city streets.

    The appeals court decision that cities are justified in taking such steps to prevent safety hazards and traffic disruptions could encourage other municipalities to ban solicitation on their streets and highways.

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  34. Fellini or Serling?June 17, 2010 at 4:04 PM

    Are we being forced to develop beyond our capacity to provide water?

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  35. Yes Frederico and Rod, our new city council will ask us to swallow RHNA numbers whole, and tell us that there's plenty o'water for all - or there will be plenty o'water for all after we pay the rate hike, so we can fix the pipes up pretty, and maybe buy water from Arcadia.

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