We spend an inordinate amount of time on the bad of California politics here on the site. And with a system this dysfunctional, there’s a lot of bad to go around. But as the budget hostage crisis continues, and state workers don’t know if they’ll be able to afford their bills come Monday, I wanted to at least recognize some of the positive developments around the city and state:
• The Governor signed a bill today banning trans fats in all state restaurants and bakeries by 2011. Combined with the law signed earlier this week to crack down on the sale of downer cattle in US groceries, and the LA City Council moving forward on a one-year moratorium on new fast-food restaurants in South Los Angeles, this is a good week for food safety, nutrition and public health.
• As mentioned by Shayera, the Los Angeles City Council voted to ban plastic bags by 2010, if the state does not mandate a $0.25 charge for every bag by then. Additionally on the environmental front, there’s also the statewide green building code adopted by the California Building Standards Commission, and another passage for the third year in a row, of a port container fee which would be invested in fighting pollution (Hopefully this time the Governor will sign it). This too is good.
• Leland Wong was convicted yesterday on 14 counts of public corruption and bribery while he was LA City Commissioner. Accountability is good.
• In Orange County, the Laguna Beach City Council, which is majority Republican, became one of the first to publicly oppose Prop. 8, the hate amendment. Saying no to hate is good.
• Unfortunately, not everything is good. Foreclosure rates are skyrocketing nationwide, more than doubling in the second quarter. In one incredible example, almost 1 in 20 homes in Merced have been lost to foreclosure, the highest rate in America. Wow. Not good.
• A couple more good things: PDLA is kicking off a Legislative Education Project and assigning progressive scores to individual Congressmembers (The first, David Dreier, has a 0). They’re also going after Lou Dobbs for his criticism of their deeply unserious notion that health care is a human right.
What set off Dobbs’ eruption? Apparently it was his correspondent reporting that PDA “is urging the Democratic Party to adopt a plank at the party’s convention in Denver, guaranteeing accessible health care for all.”
You can help us push back against Dobbs and other media demagogues.
Within a day, you’ll be receiving a follow-up email from Norman Solomon, co-chair of PDA’s “Healthcare NOT Warfare” campaign, about our efforts to bring the principle of guaranteed health care for all into the heart of the Democratic Convention in Denver. And ways you can participate throughout the country.
For now, I want to ask you to click here and help PDA talk back to the media attacks now underway against us.
They should take the lead on Dobbs the way Color of Change took the lead on Fox News.