The Predator?

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The Orange County Register had an interesting front-pager yesterday:

A team of bureaucrats picked by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is quietly preparing a comprehensive reorganization of state government larger than any attempted in California history.

The plan, expected to be complete by April 30, would close down whole departments and consolidate others. Up to 200 state boards and commissions and 1,500 political appointees would be eliminated.

Many more specifics in the article.

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  1. Well, it’s not the Orange County Register for nothing.

  2. ? Consolidate most energy regulation under a newly created energy secretary picked by the governor. Regulation now resides in various appointed, semi-independent commissions.

    ? Create a new Department of Public Health, which would coordinate various prevention, advocacy and information programs. Eliminate a statewide health-planning department.

    ? Consolidation of the Department of Corrections and the California Youth Authority into a single prisons department. Close several prisons.

    That’s a start, I guess. If this pans out, Kudos to Ahnold. Anyone who has the cojones to start shutting down government departments is ok with me! I like the article’s author’s concern over whether layoffs will ensue. Hell yeah, as they should. Bloody government welfare job state bullshit. The government is not there to create jobs! It’s not there to provide jobs. And if people DO get layed off, what does that mean? Hey, less tax dollars needed to pay their salaries. I likey!

    Schwarzenegger has officially booked an anticipated $150 million in first-year savings from the review’s efforts. But Billy Hamilton, a deputy comptroller from the state of Texas hired to help oversee the review, said savings could be much higher.

    There you have it.

    “In an effort to look like he’s an action hero in politics, (Schwarzenegger) is bordering on trampling some fundamental precepts of a democracy,” said Sen. Jackie Speier, D-Hillsborough, who chairs a Senate government oversight committee.

    Such as…?

  3. “In an effort to look like he’s an action hero in politics, (Schwarzenegger) is bordering on trampling some fundamental precepts of a democracy,” said Sen. Jackie Speier, D-Hillsborough”

    Such as…?

    Speier’s right to buy votes with tax money, I guess.

    If Arnold actually pulls this off, I’m going to start pushing for a Constitutional amendment to let foreign-born citizens run for President.

  4. Interesting how only elected celebrities riding the wave of their apolitical popularity can seem to muster the support to reduce government.

  5. “Bloody government welfare job state bullshit.”

    HA, well put ewilliam. That sentence had me cracking up….

  6. Great movies and major cuts to government?!?!?
    This must be too good to be true.

  7. Putting a finer point on your point, Pavel, don’t they tend to be muscular and anti-intellectual?
    No wonder libertarians never get anywhere.

  8. HA, well put ewilliam. That sentence had me cracking up….

    Hey, no problem…

    But it really does piss me off to no end to hear people oppose government cuts because, god forbid, some people might get laid off! That is completely and utterly beside the point. Ahnold obviously realizes that one of the major reasons the state is in dire financial straits (this applies to the USG as well) is because it is a big inefficient beaurocracy monster. If people are part of the problem, then they’re just gonna have to take their lumps and find a new job.

  9. Ruthless–

    Um, well, obviously, most libertarians aren’t anti-intellectual. But not muscular?

  10. “Bloody government welfare job state bullshit”

    Why are you blaming the employees? Just like anyone else they tried to get the most money for their labor. They have nothing to do with creating the system.

    Getting laid off is a pretty big deal to most people. It bothers me when others lose their job. Not everyone can sit at home and do nothing except and read and post at Reason all day. Some of us have to work.

  11. Putting a finer point on your point, Pavel, don’t they tend to be muscular and anti-intellectual?

    How is Schwarzenegger “anti-intellectual”?

  12. Okay ewilliam, so you’re muscular.
    Do you have hair on your chest?
    But, wait, you’re intellectual, so nevermind.
    It’s tough to have it all.

  13. Schwarzenegger has officially booked an anticipated $150 million in first-year savings from the review’s efforts.

    Ooooh! A whole 150 million?

    Any idea how much money the State of California makes in interest by not obeying it’s own “pay bi-weekly” rule, and paying State employees monthly?

    Roughly $12 Million. A month.

  14. Only puny, wussy men have hair on their chest Ruthless. Real men wax it so you can see their huge, bulbous muscles.
    We need a Constitutional Amendment for me to be President because I have just learned that Al-Qaeda is now employing T-1000s in their terrorist efforts. These must have been the WMDs that President Bush was looking for.
    How dare you blog about me Matt Welch? You are a puny, girly man.

  15. Pavel,

    I think it’s because the people who usually espouse reducing the size of government tend to carry socially conservative baggage that doesn’t resonate with “the middle”. That’s the platform that Bush ran on in 2000… oh, bad example, my bad.

  16. Interesting how only elected celebrities riding the wave of their apolitical popularity can seem to muster the support to reduce government.

    The way politicians become popular, generally speaking, is by bribing the citizenry with its own tax money. Now, reducing the size of government, when you get right down to it, is an unpopular thing to do. If it was popular, after all, everyone in office would do it. A politician needs a certain amount of goodwill with the electorate in order to survive (politically speaking) a serious attempt to shrink government. Since shrinking government by $X costs you more popularity than increasing it by $X gains you, this means that you need some source of popularity, that doesn’t come from porkbarelling, if you want to shrink government. This is where celebrities come into play.

    … I just made that up, but hey, sounds convincing to me.

  17. The real destroyer of the liberties of the people is he who spreads among them bounties, donations and benefits. — Plutarch

    The blame for [the national debt] lies with the Congress and the President, with Democrats and Republicans alike, most all of whom have been unwilling to make the hard choices or to explain to the American people that there is no such thing as a free lunch. — Senator Warren Rudman

    A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largess of the public treasury. From that time on the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury, with the results that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship. — Sir Alexander Fraser Tyler

  18. Sen. Jackie Speier is the same idiot who introduced the legislation that banned ephedra in California, not trusting adult citizens decide for themselves. It’s no surprise that someone so paternalistic would defend the numerous overlapping and useless state government bureaucracies.

  19. Dan wondered why Ahnoldt is anti-intellectual:
    His name in German is redundant. What more do you need to know?

  20. > Up to 200 state boards and commissions and 1,500 political appointees would be eliminated.

  21. Pavel:
    “Interesting how only elected celebrities riding the wave of their apolitical popularity can seem to muster the support to reduce government.”

    We’ll take it any way we can get it. 😀

  22. Go Arnold! Terminate those departments! SMAALA GOVAMENT!

  23. How about a slight modification to the law about civil service strikers. Guarantee their right to strike, but deny them the right to return.

  24. I was just thinking….it might be helpful to the cause of smaller government out in California if a number of us contacted Arnold and offered him encouragement and congratulations. After all, we are talking about a guy who showed up at a Reason anniversary banquet of his own accord.

    It might help to ask if they “could be so kind as to see to it that Arnold himself is sees the e-mail”. And also, perhaps mention the Reason connection. Write to Arnold at:

    governor@governor.ca.gov

    Hey you Reason editors; letters from you folks might be especially helpful.

  25. Dan wondered why Ahnoldt is anti-intellectual:
    His name in German is redundant. What more do you need to know?

    “Schwarzenegger” means “black plowman” (an “egge” is a type of plow). How is that redundant?

  26. hihihihihihi! Yet another Austrian wanting to take over the world.
    Wait a moment.

    Bad Idea.
    🙂
    KK

    p.s, how widespread is the US talk about amending the Constitution to allow foreign-born to become candidates for President?

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