Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Bill Lockyer

My most recent project is an intensive research program covering ALL cantidates for office I will have the opportunity to vote for this November, as well as the start of an ongoing effort to monitor the (recorded) activities of elected officials. I subscrubed to Google Alerts for every person currently serving in an elected office I can vote for, as well as every cantidate for the upcoming election. Today, I am going to tell you a bit about my findings for Bill Lockyer.

First off, Bill Lockyer is a lawyer. He currently serves as Attorney General. Now he's running for Treasurer? Now, maybe I don't know how these things work, but wouldn't it be better to have--oh, I don't know--a accountant or an economist or something for such an office? (For the record Marian V Smithson, Libertarian, is a CPA currently serving as treasurer for a city government, and Claude Parrish, Republican, has a degree in accounting.)

And now, the news.

The Good

Bill Lockyer is in favor of legal fee reimbursement for the attorney general's office. I don't know if this means he's generally in favor of reimbursement for losers in civil cases, but if it does, that's a good thing.

The Middle

Bill Lockyer is against the Supreme Court ruling in regards to medical marajuanna. I consider this "middle" because, as important as I find the actual issue to be, I am ambivalant about the court ruling. Because, when it comes right down to it, the court ruling was "constitutional," assuming having anti-drug laws on the book is constitutional in any way, shape, or form (it isn't). The only truly "constitutional" ruling would have been to slice our drug regime back, at the very list, to covering only drugs shipped across state borders. Where, exactly, the federal government derives its authority to criminalize production of a plant that is often grown, processed, and consumed in the space of a single lot, let alone a single state, I don't know.

But assuming the drug laws are constitutional, this ruling was the right ruling.

The Bad

Bill Lockyer is convinced, despite all evidence to the contrary, that current gas prices are due to gouging. An investigation by the California Energy Commission has found that there was no price gouging; the recent increases in prices are purely economic, and the higher rates for California gas are due to scarcity in specific compounds requred by law for California, but not for other states. Never mind the turmoil in the largest oil-producing countries in the world, or the fact that there hasn't been a new refining plant built since the seventies (if not earlier). It has GOT to be gouging that is driving our prices up, says Lockyer.
"I think the report essentially provides a lot of excuses why oil company prices ran up," Lockyer said. "They aren't excuses that make any sense to me."
Well, of course they don't. He's a complete ignoramus when it comes to economics, or, at least, he plays one on TV for the benefit of other economic ignoramuses.

Bill Lockyer wrote the first ever Thought Crime law in the United Staes--euphemistically referred to as Hate Crim legislation. As far as I'm concerned, theft is theft, murder is murder, vandilism is vandalism, assault is assault. The motivation for said crime shouldn't be an issue, except of course for the usual purpose. It is enough that being on the record as a hater provides one with a continually filled "motivation" slot to be used in any criminal trial. I believe prosecuting people for hateful thoughts is a dangerously slippery slope.

In other words, unless Google digs up something better about Mr. Lockyer, I won't be voting for him.

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