George Skelton: 34% is a ‘small minority’

Dec. 13, 2012

By Chris Reed

The persistence with which George Skelton writes silly, slanted stuff is hard to exaggerate. He only occasionally tells his L.A. Times readers that unions run Sacramento. He is a constant advocate of the Sacramento establishment’s mantra that the main thing wrong with California is our low tax structure, even if our taxes aren’t low. Now Skelton is at it again, depicting 34 percent of voters as a “small minority” in his column calling for “adjustments” to Prop. 13 and an end to its requirement that many taxes can only be approved by a two-thirds vote.

Property taxes are the only taxes in California that aren’t high by national standards. Our income tax is now the nation’s highest and our gas and sales taxes are very near the top, and our corporate taxes are the highest in the West. Meanwhile, our unemployment is the second highest in the state and has been over 10 percent for more than three years, and we’re about to saddle industry (and consumers) with the highest energy costs in the nation.

And George Skelton surveys this picture and concludes our biggest problem is … the fact that one category of taxation in California isn’t among the highest in the nation.

But, hey, he’s got his own grand tradition to uphold. Last December, George wrote a column trashing Jerry Brown for saying in 2010 while running for gov that he wouldn’t back “new taxes unless the people vote for them.”

“This was an unfortunate promise Brown made when running for governor in a too-clever-by-half effort to undercut opponent Meg Whitman’s false characterization of him as a liberal tax and spender.

“It’s hard to find anyone around the Capitol outside the governor’s office who doesn’t think the promise was wrongheaded.”

Inside George’s bubble, everyone wants higher taxes, you see. Those who resist? They’re a “small minority,” if they exist at all.

George Skelton: Still delivering the big laughs after 50 years on the job!

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