Prop 1A - Yes.
Even though I am wary that it could be a boondoggle. I'm all for trying to create an alternative to cars and airplanes for intra-state travel.
Prop 2 - No.
Prop 3 - No.
Yes, I am a heartless monster. However, we passed Prop 61 four years ago, and now the argument is that they need more. My problem is that they don't say what its needed for other than just expansion. The need for expanded health-care, especialy for children is always going to be there. As much as I would like to cure every child, with the budget deficit as it is currently in California, it seems wrong to add more debt on simply because "more" is needed for the kids.
Prop 4 - No.
I am mindful that the people who are affected by this law are children. And children do not have the right to make virtually any other medical decision. However, at the same time, I am also mindful that having a kid is a big deal, one that can affect their lives forever, just as the decision to choose an abortion is. But as the official ballot initiative pamphlet from the state points out, the law does allow minors the choice of treatment for anything relating to a pregnancy. So it seems wrong to take away this choice. If only the anti-abortion foes would spend more time teaching their kids how not to get pregnant... but alas I digress.
Prop 5 - No!
I am all for drug court, rehabilitation and drug treatment. However, I am absolutely opposed to anything that prevents a judge from crafting the right sentence to fit the crime. This proposition would prevent the courts from dealing with criminals who are deemed "nonviolent". There is the argument that people can blame their crimes - such as burglary, theft, and embezzlement - to get into this type of sentencing. While I am not sure that this analysis is correct, I think that by taking away the court's ability to use the stick, the carrot of drug court and diversion is going to become less effective. Therefore, vote no on 5.
Prop 6 - No.
There are some nice things in here dealing with gangs and gun violations. However, the cost of doing all this, by requiring a set amount from the State's General Fund is just wrong. In times like these, to have required spending levels, especially in budget crunches, means that the state is going to be unable to act as flexibly as is needed. This is just the wrong way to go about dealing with the problems of gangs. This proposition is no good for California.
Prop 7 - No.
Let's see, when the Republicans, the Democrats, PG&E, Sierra Club, the Green Party all agree that there is a problem with this initiative, I think there is a problem. Its badly written. It has the potential to hurt us fiscally as well as hinder small business who want to get into the alternative energy field. This is just not the way to do it. Vote No.
Prop 8 - NO!
Do I really need to go into why this is wrong? I am a religious person. I am a married person. However, I do not believe all the hoopla that the religious groups have been making over this issue. Consenting adults should be allowed to marry whomever they wish. It was wrong we told Mildred Jeter that she could not marry Richard Loving. Just because Sue might be marrying Jane, my marriage is not going to be any less valid. Will kids hear about gays getting married? They already do. Does it harm them? As opposed to buying them Grand Theft Auto IV? Or any other shoot-em-up game out there?
At its core, this is a discriminatory piece of legislation. If we adopt it, it will stain California's reputation for decades. Instead of being a state that values inclusion and equality of opportunity, we will be taking counsel of the fears of those who are unwilling to see that change is occurring. Who are we to say that someone's love for another person is wrong, and therefore not deserving of the same recognition, simply because they are in love with the person who is of the same sex? Vote No on Prop 8.
Prop 9 - No.
I've lived through being a prosecutor in a state where there are victims rights bills like this one. It just causes a mess. It changes the system from one of justice to one of retribution. We need less of the latter and more of the former. Vote No.
Prop 10 - No.
Let me get this straight? A bond measure to help consumers buy high fuel economy or alternative fuel vehicles? As the Chronicle notes, this works out to being about $2000 a buyer. When you subsidize things, the prices tend to stay higher. Why? Because it allows the buyer, in this case, to afford a higher price. How about this... lets the market drive down the price for alternative fuels. Even with the drop in gas prices in the last few weeks, we are still paying a lot higher than most can still easily afford. We are not going back to the 1980s when gas was under a $1.00 per gallon. If people have an incentive to bring a fuel efficient mehtod to market at a good price, it will be better than subsidizing a more expensive method. This is just another attempt to get money out of the state, money that is needed for other projects, not people's purchasing of a new car (especially when I don't see anything in here about the government funding my trip to the grocery store!). Vote No.
Prop 11 - No.
Redistricting is a pain no matter who does it. But one of the perogatives of being the party in power means you get to help with the redistricting. This new baord, with its equal number of seats gives too much power to the minority parties. You think electoral districts are funky under the current system, wait until there is a deadlock under the proposed one.
Prop 12 - Yes.
I know, I'm usually against anything that includes a bond. However, the program that these bonds will fund has a track record of success. The value of the bonds have been paid back with the money generated from the mortgages loaned by this project. Now its time to refund it. Vote Yes.
Local San Francisco Propositions
Prop A - Yes.
We need a hospital in this city. It needs to be upgraded to meet the new earthquake codes. Math seems pretty simple on this one. Vote Yes!.
Prop B - No.
First, San Francisco needs all the tax revenue it is getting just to pay for what it is supposed to be doing now. Second, the government should not be helping people with subsidies to buy houses. This is not going to solve the problem of affordable housing in this city. Additionally, rent subsidies are not going to be the solution in this rent control market. Its only going to exacerbate the problem by allowing the landlords to raise the rates higher (why should they care when the city is going to subsidize the tenants). This is the wrong way to deal with a very difficult problem.
Prop C - No.
Why should we prevent a qualified person from sitting on a charter board simply because they are employed by the city? If the right person works for the city, then use that person. If they dont, dont appoint them. Vote No on C.
Prop D - Yes.
Why do we have to have a city vote on this? Was this really necessary? Everyone agrees something needs to be done. So do it already. Vote Yes on D.
Prop E - No.
What is the purpose of this? Or is this just Supervisor McGoldrick trying to make it more difficult to get recalled after the scare he had before?
Prop F - No.
This is change for change sake. There is no good reason here.
Prop G - Yes.
This seems like a limited change for a specified purpose: you get to purchase (not automatically receive) credit for time taken for parental leave. Or, in simpler terms, people's retirment do not get dinged for having a kid.
Prop H - No. No. No. NO. NO! NO!
This is the ultimate boondoggle. It simply gives the Board of Supervisors a blank check to solve a problem that does not exist. Is there really a need for the City and County of San Francisco to run its own utility? Its not going to help with a move towards greening the enivronment. All its going to do is cost the San Francisco tax payers. Vote No on this proposition.
Prop I - No.
An independent rate payer advocate? Or just another government office that requires funding If they had power to actually change the rates, there might be something to this measure. However, since its just going to examine rates from the viewpoint of the PUC customer, hold investigations, and provide explanation of the PUC's rates, its just going to cost the City money. Money that the City needs for other things. Vote No on this. Its just another sinecure that will need to be filled by a Supervisor or Mayor's crony.
Prop J - No.
So San Francisco has a "Landmark Preservation Advisory Board". However, Prop J wants to create a Historic Preservation Commission with seven more people appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the Supervisors. Do we need these seven, plus the nine on Landmark Board? Or is this just another attempt to find more jobs for cronies? Let me think about that while I vote No on Prop J.
Prop K - No.
Prostitution has been around forever. And attempts to stamp it out as a criminal enterprise have been failing for just about as long. However, that being said, Prop K does not provide the solution. If this were just a legalization and regulation of the sex business, that would be one thing. But this proposition goes a bit further, and prevents the police from tyring to prevent sex-trafficking. Sex-trafficking is a major problem, where women are essentially enslaved into become prostitutes and then sold and shipped around the world. Alot of them come from Asian or Eastern European countries. The last thing that San Francisco should become is a safe zone for those trafficking in people. Therefore, Vote No on Prop K.
Prop L - Yes.
Criminalizing the homeless for being homeless and the mentally ill for being crazy does not work. Yet, that is what we have done for decades. However, Prop L works to try and change this, by funnelling people into what are being called "Community Justice Centers". Essentially its a court for infractions caused by the homeless or the mentall ill. These courts have been effective in other places. Fully fund this project by voting Yes on Prop L.
Prop M - Yes.
Now, the Chronicle came out against this one, saying that there is no need for it. They say there is no evidence of landlord harassment of tenants. If that is the case, I must be getting the only tenants in all of San Francisco who are facing some of problems which this ballot measure deals with, including refusals to cash rent chekcs, requesting invasive information about tenants (including their medical and mental health status), threats of violence, and intimidation. Of course, since I doubt that anyone on the S.F. Chronicle's editorial board rents from a landlord, that would be their view. On the other hand, these things happen ever day. And tenants in San Francisco have no recourse. If you are a good landlord (i.e. one who cashes the checks in a timely fashion and who doesnt try to intimidate their tenants into fleeing) this will probably never affect you. This is about dealing with the landlords out there, and they do indeed exist and own many a building in this city, who are less than civil. Vote Yes on Prop M.
Prop N - No.
While I think the City needs money, I'm not in favor of changing the rates to single out any one group.
Prop O - Yes.
It just brings things up to the modern era from the looks of it. I don't pretend to know everything about everything, but it looks reasonable. Even though its put me again on the other side of my favorite person to see on the ballot each year: Starchild!
Prop P - No.
This seems like the mayor's attempt to get on another board. Whats the point? Vote No on P.
Prop Q - NO!
Its hard enough to be in business for oneself. Esepcially as a sole proprietor. So why are we now goign to extend the payroll tax to these people who already pay their taxes to the city. This is just going to make it harder for the small business to do business in the city, rather than spending time trying to compky with all the rules. Vote no on Q!
Prop R - No.
Its funny. Its cute. But let's just move on. Its not worth the money its going to take to put up the new sign to vote Yes on this one. We all know that George W. Bush is going to go down as an unpopular president. Let's let it go that way. Vote No on Prop R.
Prop S - No.
Its a nice idea, but all it means is that instead of the fight being over whether there is money, its going to be over where the ballot measure is realistic about where the money is coming from. Its not a real change, its just a comestic one.
Prop T - No.
This is another attempt to hamstring the City's ability to meet future challenges. It requires that a cost (unfixed mind you) be part of each budget. This means that other programs will have to be cut, programs which may be just as necessary. While I like the idea of providing free treatment to substance abusers, doing this at the cost of other programs which may involve prevention, education, and job training is ill-advised. Vote No on Prop T.
Prop U - NO.
It'll probably win, but then again its just wrong and stupid. Vote No.
Prop V - Yes.
Keep JROTC. Ignore your prejudices against the military and recognize that this program has helped a lot of people get their lives together and go to college. The military is neither evil nor the enemy of San Francisco. Fostering a hatred and disrespect, through actions like this, is why people do not take San Franciscans seriously on other issues. This is somethign that is voluntary. No one is saying to make it mandatory. People who want to volunteer for this type of training should not be prevented by small-minded peaceniks. Vote Yes on Prop V.