Prop 29 shaping up to be fiscal disaster

May 25, 2012

By Katy Grimes

What do stem cell research and cancer research have in common?

In California, both health causes serve as money making mechanisms for bureaucrats.

Stem cell research

In 2004, California voters passed the stem cell initiative, Proposition 71, which authorized the creation of the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine, at a cost of $3 billion to taxpayers. Touted to as the only way to find the cure for Parkinson’s disease, rare cancers and other rare diseases, eight years later, where are any cures?

Even after a great deal of scrutiny since its creation, the CIRM is planning on asking voters for even more money.  Highly paid officials, conflicts of interest, a stunning lack of results, and no accountability, CIRM has become a large and expensive problem for California.

Cancer research

In June, California voters have a chance to stop a similar fiscal disaster. Proposition 29, “The California Cancer Research Act,” exhibits all the same built-in flaws as the stem cell initiative—a lack of financial accountability, conflicts of interest, as well as the possibility of running out of money.

As with the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine , Proposition 29 is exempt from the oversights of the administrative and legislative budget process, which prevents the legislature and Governor from reining in unchecked spending, and questionable uses of funds.

And, Prop 29 was written to remain in place for 15 years, without the possibility of changes–not even by voters.

Prop 29 will provide an even larger discretionary budget to its commission by allowing $110 million to be spent every year on “facilities.”  The nine appointed commission members can spend the money out of the state, or even out of the country. If additional taxes are going to be imposed on Californians, the money should at least be required to be spent within the state.

Conflict of interest

Of the $1.1 billion dispersed by California’s stem cell research agency since its passage, $930 million has gone to research institutions with faculty or administrators on the stem cell agency board. Prop 29 contains the same conflicts of interest, and would allow the tobacco tax money to be given to the organizations which employ the commissioners.

Prop 29 raises revenue from tobacco taxes, and claims that it will discourage people from smoking. However, not only is there no scientific data showing that taxing smokers encourages people to quit smoking, if the goal is really to stop smoking, where will future revenues needed to support the agency come from?  Many anticipate that the Prop 29 commission will eventually run short of revenues, and will end up turning to voters for funding.

As Californians have witnessed with the CIRM, Prop 29 could be an even bigger fiscal disaster.  Even the LA Times editorial board said that Prop 29 was obviously modeled after the CIRM initiative, lacked the same accountability as CIRM, and said that they oppose Prop 29.

With a $17 billion deficit, California does not need one more tax or another costly, unaccountable bureaucracy.

Read Proposition 29 here, to review both sides of the argument. For the two campaigns, look at Californians Against Out-of-Control Taxes & Spending, the opposition to Prop 29, and  Californians for a Cure, the group supporting Prop 29.

May 24, 2012



Write a comment
  1. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 24 May, 2012, 19:41

    Listen, none of this is about “cures”. If they cure terminal or debilitating illnesses that means people live longer and will bankrupt the system – with too many old people in the population. The last thing these pigs want is for commoners to live longer. They want to raise the social security and medicare age so that most people don’t reach it.

    This is all about making rich connected people richer. It is a bonus program for the rich elitists – who then turn around and give huge donations to the politicians. And there is no doubt in my mind that some of those “donations” are off the books too!

    Don’t you remember the old Jerry Lewis telethons to cure muscular dystrophy? How has that worked out?? And I remember those shows back when I was knee high to a grasshopper.

    Seriously, what disease have they cured since Polio??? They made lots of progress with AIDS only because they threw $billions$ of dollars after an effective treatment since there are some very influential gays in very powerful positions throughout the world. Many who you wouldn’t even suspect of being gay.

    Whenever money starts flowing in modern day America you need to follow the money trail. Only at the end of the money trail will you find the TRUE purpose and intent of these bogus wealth transfers. 😉

    Reply this comment
  2. Donkey
    Donkey 24 May, 2012, 19:53

    Katy, Prop 29 is nothing but a RAGWUS scam out together by connected government bureaucrats and union thugs to fill thier pockets with tax dollars.

    Just what the state needs, another worthless bureaucracy to feather the beds of the RAGWUS elite.

    Thanks for the post girl! 😉

    Reply this comment
  3. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 24 May, 2012, 20:13

    “Katy, Prop 29 is nothing but a RAGWUS scam out together by connected government bureaucrats and union thugs to fill thier pockets with tax dollars”

    It’s not just a government scam, Mr. Donkey. A good share of that money is going to private research organizations who give major kickbacks to the pols. I bet pharma companies are in on it too! Some of these private corporations are no better than the government pigs! They too live off trough feed.

    Reply this comment
  4. Bob
    Bob 24 May, 2012, 23:26

    Proposition 71, which authorized the creation of the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine, at a cost of $3 billion to taxpayers.

    I thought it was 6 billion when you include the interest on the bonds.

    Reply this comment
  5. Mike
    Mike 25 May, 2012, 00:39

    Speaking of conflicts of interest, here is a dossier of all of the No-on-29 organizations that have direct ties to big tobacco:

    Nice try Katy.

    Reply this comment
  6. CalWatchdog
    CalWatchdog Author 25 May, 2012, 09:23

    Mike: Anyone being attacked by government has a right to defend himself. Same with any group. They’re also defending the little guy, too, because nowadays most smokers are poor or in the lower middle class. The tax increase advocates, including the so-called “charities,” are part of the Elite.

    — John Seiler

    Reply this comment
  7. CalWatchdog
    CalWatchdog Author 25 May, 2012, 10:25

    Mike – while ‘big tobacco’ is a great diversion, the fact remains that the proposition is ugly. Don’t let your hatred of big oil and big tobacco take precedence. Tobacco is still a legal business in the U.S., for now.

    Why do you think I gave links to both sides of the prop, as well as an independent ballot website?


    Reply this comment
  8. Fred Mangels
    Fred Mangels 25 May, 2012, 11:08

    They’re also defending the little guy, too, because nowadays most smokers are poor or in the lower middle class.

    That’s right, and I’d consider them lucky to have tobacco companies campaigning in their interests. After all, they’ll be paying the tax, not the tobacco companies.

    But one disgusting element of this proposition wasn’t mentioned: That so many people are fine with voting for a tax on someone else.

    Most of Prop 29’s proponents (I don’t know if “Mike” is one of them) would never think of walking up to a poor person walking down the street, beating him up and taking his wallet. Yet that’s exactly what they’re doing when they vote for Prop 29 and they see no problem with it.

    I would never vote for a tax that applied to someone else but not to me. I guess it goes to show what a corrupting influence “democracy” is on society.

    Reply this comment
  9. Fred Mangels
    Fred Mangels 25 May, 2012, 11:11

    Tobacco is still a legal business in the U.S., for now.

    And I’ve been surprised at how many comments I’ve read, both from proponents and opponents of this measure, suggesting if they want to get people to stop smoking, they should just make tobacco illegal. Many of these same people, of course, think marijuana should at least be decriminalized (as I do) but can’t see the problem with that conflict in their thinking.

    Reply this comment
  10. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 25 May, 2012, 12:12

    You have to laugh at the way these lying polticians all claim that they are there to help the ‘little guy’.

    But it’s the ‘little guy’ who consumes the majority of the cigarettes in California. And now they make no bones about it. The pols are out to screw him with Prop 29. They want to steal more of what the little guy has left!

    I bet a full 25% of the Sactown clowns go home after work and suck on a joint. Why don’t they give random drug tests to Sactown politicians??? You would NEVER see a law like that!!! They protect their own.

    Disclosure: I don’t smoke and have never smoked except at keggers in HS and college on rare occurrences.

    Reply this comment
  11. SimpleEconomics
    SimpleEconomics 25 May, 2012, 12:54

    “However, not only is there no scientific data showing that taxing smokers encourages people to quit smoking…” Here is where I disagree. While demand for cigarettes is very inelastic, there’s still a proportion of smokers who are price sensitive. By definition, this means a tax increase will cause the price sensitive smokers to lower their quantity demanded. If you can show me evidence that the current smokers in California have an an aggregate demand that is completely inelastic, you are correct that this tax will be ineffective. Given that there are still tons of smokers remaining in California, my guess is the odds of no price sensitive smokers remaining is really low. In a perfect world, every smoker bears 100% of the direct and indirect costs associated with smoking. That’s highly unlikely so the I don’t have a problem with the state taking the cheapest way out: reducing the number of smokers.

    Reply this comment
  12. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 25 May, 2012, 16:06

    SimpleEconomics, I bet if I taxed you heavily for using water that eventually I could get you to stop taking baths too. We could use your tax money to save the delta smelt. heh. 🙂 How would you like those apples, my friend???

    Be careful who you decide to selectively punish for a lifestyle that you happen to dislike. 😉

    Reply this comment
  13. Donkey
    Donkey 25 May, 2012, 19:09

    SimpleEconomics, or should I say RepressEconomics. Like all the RAGWUS feeder humanitarians, you seek control of others based on your sense of being annoited to the position of all seeing and all knowing universial lifeforce and world spirt. One thing that government does well is the fact that it uses it power to influence the dislike of those people that it wants revenue from by painting them in a bad light and with a broad brush.

    We don’t need another bureaucracy of any kind. What we need is harsh and quick cuts to all government workers, 30% cut in pay, 50% cut in benefits, remove all perks, and cut all pensions over $40,000 by 50% or to the $40,000 level,with no pension being over $50,000 under any circumstances, cut all COLA’s to zero and no spiking for any reason. 🙂

    Reply this comment
  14. ron
    ron 26 May, 2012, 09:15

    Tax the poor to feed the rich!!

    Reply this comment
  15. Fred Mangels
    Fred Mangels 26 May, 2012, 11:07

    Be careful who you decide to selectively punish for a lifestyle that you happen to dislike.

    Exactly, simpleeconomics. They’ll likely come after something you like next.

    Reply this comment
  16. Roger
    Roger 26 May, 2012, 15:33

    If it weren’t for the tobacco company money there would be zero ads against Prop 29. I guess Phillip Morris is right. Just keep repeating the same lies enough and people will believe it.

    Reply this comment
  17. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 26 May, 2012, 15:37

    Mr. Donkey – did you know that Anthony Orban’s trial in underway? He’s the OC detective from Westminster who kidnapped the waitress/mother as she got off work and made her drive to a industrial park where he raped and sodomized her while inserting his service firearm into her mouth. He is using the Zoloft defense and claiming insanity!!! heh. Naturally they are paying off some doctors to testify on his behalf. How many Americans are taking antidepressants and how many of them kidnap innocent women and rape/sodomize them? If the pig beats the charges or was deemed to be “insane” at the time of the act – you know the entire system is rigged.

    Naturally none of the OC newspapers are reporting day to day on the trial. The OC Register had one article in the very beginning and, as far as I know, that was it. But if an ex-NFL player is involved in a murder – they have day to day coverage. Goes to show how the mainstream media goes out of it’s way to protect the cop industry. The only paper that I can find reporting on it regularly is the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin.

    More cover-ups by discounting the story.

    Reply this comment
  18. Donkey
    Donkey 29 May, 2012, 18:48

    OCO, as to post #17, yes, I have been looking at the same Inland Valley paper.

    What I have seen when it comes to LE RAGWUS criminals, the prosecutors fail to levy the fifteen to thirty charges on the perp cop because he wears a badge. The typical “civilian” is terrorized by the sadists in the DA RAGWUS with fifty to one hundred years of prison time if they fail to cop a plea bargain.

    We have to look no further than Chief Adams of Bell to see that the gun toting arm of Bell were the muscle that harrassed the citizens with every type of code violation possible to fund their crooked scam. Yet they all walked with no charges. In my book they were the worst of the bunch, if only because they should have known better. 🙂

    Reply this comment
  19. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 29 May, 2012, 22:58

    Mr. Donkey – my point is that this is a systemic coverup. Lots of people commit crimes under the influence of drugs or alcohol. It could be argued that they were not in their right minds when the act was perpetrated. But are they allowed by the courts to use an ‘insanity’ defense. Of course not. Have you ever heard of a defendant accused of murder use the defense “Zoloft made me do it”? Besides, Orban was drinking heavily right before he kidnapped the poor woman. He did that VOLUNTARILY. No one forced him.

    Now throw in the major newspapers that are not reporting on this case. They don’t want to cast a negative light on the cops with bad publicity – so they remain silent when this case should be followed day by day.

    The entire system is set up to protect their interests, whereas if an ordinary civilian committed those crimes he would be thrown to the wolves.

    If Orban skates on this or is deemed “insane” and is allowed to go to a medical facility for mental health treatment until ‘cured’ and released – you know the system is totally rigged. Keep a watchful eye on this case.

    Reply this comment
  20. Escovado
    Escovado 5 June, 2012, 07:14

    Tax cigarettes to discourage smoking…but fight to make marijuana legal to smoke. My state never ceases to amaze me.

    Reply this comment

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