Buckle Up. Hang on for a Ride
From Issue: Volume XX - Number 15
By Les Robbins
While I am still anticipating a soon to be released city budget, it would appear that I will have to wait a little longer. Not really sure when the mayor will release the budget but, I know that I am not the only person awaiting the bad news.
Speaking of bad news there was a little more in local newspapers as crime stats were released. Contrary to what some of you may have read in the Beachcomber ‘Letters to the Editor’ section, crime is not on the decline anywhere in the County of Los Angeles. While one of my most favorite letter writers would try to make you think otherwise, he is, as usual, very incorrect in his assessment of what is going on.
Both FBI and Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department statistics show sharp increases on all types of crimes, and based on my 32 years in law enforcement, as well as what the state is doing to cities and counties with the prisoner release, I do not expect this trend to change any time soon.
The prospect of further cuts in local law enforcement coupled with the rumored reductions on fire service are a very bad omen, so I still think that a lot of you should buckle up and hold on for the ride. Things will get worse before they get better. What will be fascinating is to see how the various council members react to the upcoming budget and its cuts. When you promise everyone that you will not gore their ox and then you do it becomes very interesting.
Speaking of interesting, I suspect that the fall federal elections will be something to behold this time around. The impact of the Supreme Court decision on the funding of political campaigns will take us to a place never before experienced. I have always felt that transparency was a good thing, in both government and in politics. Unfortunately our Supreme Court has set back transparency in political elections to lows never before imagined and I really suspect that we will see stuff happen this time around that will be unprecedented.
California is not a swing or battle ground state, but I have visited a couple in the past few months and the television is just being pummeled with the ads that are being paid for by the Super-PAC’s. The old political saying that if you throw enough crap on a Teflon coated wall, because some of it is bound to stick, is being tested to a fare thee well in many states. Negative campaigning is done for one reason and that is because it works.
Personally, I find Governor Romney’s decision to not release his tax returns to be a very fascinating political move. I also believe that it is a very calculated one in that he has made a very conscious decision to not release them, because he knows that if he does he will play hell with the electorate. He has made a decision to take the heat for not releasing them because that heat will pale in comparison to that which he will experience, politically, if he does release them.
I suspect that it has a great deal to do with tax free, off-shore accounts, and his role as CEO of Bane Capital Management. He has put himself in a very unenviable position with respect to both, and it is very difficult to paint yourself as the epitome of credibility and leadership when you have taken a great deal of your personal wealth and hidden it offshore so you do not have to pay taxes on it at the same time that you are trying to convince middle class Americans that if you vote for him he will create untold numbers of jobs that will improve your plight.
I don’t think, however, that the last chapter of this whole issue has been written yet, at least I sure hope not because Middle Class America has a right to know the answers to these things. For this man to think that he doesn’t have to do what virtually every other presidential candidate has done for over 60 years is just plain arrogant and ludicrous.