California pols exempt themselves from gun control laws

  • 13 June 2016
  • NormanL
California pols exempt themselves from gun control laws

California is noted for its trend-setting ways. If that is still true, then we can point to the Golden State as a source of the rot that has overcome so much of the nation's political class. Consider this action, taken last week in the California Senate:

The California state Senate voted 28-8 Wednesday to exempt itself from the pointless gun-control laws that apply to the rest of the populace. Legislators apparently think they alone are worthy to pack heat on the streets for personal protection, and the masses ought to wait until the police arrive.

Gun control is for the little people. But given the perks of office California legislators enjoy, they may need to pack heat...just in case the proles get a bit angry:

This is just one of many bills Golden State politicians used this legislative session to set themselves apart from the little people, the ones who pay their inflated salaries. Annual compensation for legislators averages about $140,000, not counting luxurious perks such as taxpayer-funded cars and free gasoline. By comparison, the average Californian earns $50,000 a year, and the unemployment rate is 11.9 percent - far above the national average. Exact salaries for state assemblymen and senators are obscured by the use of a “per diem” payment scheme that shelters a significant chunk of income from taxation.

Attempts by a handful of reformers to require politicians to provide a full annual disclosure of the benefits received from the public treasury have been rebuffed. Currently, government officials must file a statement of economic interests revealing income from any source other than a local, state or federal government agency. Gifts worth more than $50 also must be disclosed, but lawmakers rejected a bill that would have prohibited acceptance of concert and sporting event tickets, gift cards, spa treatments, golf outings and other benefits from lobbyists trying to buy votes.

Twenty-six years ago, California voters imposed term limits on their state legislators. The aim was to break up the comfortable, crony networks that raised the politicians above the masses, and enriched the pols at the same time.

We've long been fans of term limitation. However, it does appear the California experiment with the idea is turning sour.

Then again, we're reminded of the words of H.L. Mencken:

Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.