This holiday season, let’s thank José Arnulfo Arias, and the Reagan-era judge who gave him justice. When California dairy worker José Arias asserted his rights, the dairy’s lawyer called the immigration. Arias’ legal aid attorneys sued. The law should protect Arias, but does it? The question is before the U.S. Supreme Court,
Erika D. Smith: The drug war destroyed their neighborhoods. This Sacramento weed policy could help. On Tuesday, the City Council can make it easier for minority business owners to claim a stake in the capital city’s marijuana industry.
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Erika D. Smith: There’s no easy way to convince homeless people to accept the help they need – especially if they’ve been living outdoors for years. Sacramento should remember this when it launches the Whole Person Care program, as Sister Libby Fernandez does every day with her ministry, Mercy Pedalers.
Jack Ohman knows how to make Sacramento’s smart parking meters even more complicated. See his suggestions here.
Marcos Breton: These laws are eroding public trust with police. And they are hurting good officers, too.
Bill Whalen: Starting next year, California voters will automatically receive their ballots by mail four weeks before the election. But early voting deprives citizens of being more physically and spiritually involved in the democratic process.
Andrew Malcolm, McClatchyDC: Recited by fundraisers, President Donald Trump’s tweets are well-received by supporters as candid insights into the unorthodox president’s thinking. And they’ve fueled an historic flow of donations into the Republican National Committee.
Dan Walters, CALmatters: California’s state budget seems healthy, but it isn’t. Gov. Jerry Brown should spend some political capital on tax reform.
Maia Paras Evrigenis: “Lady Bird” is a much more accurate depiction than I expected. To me, the movie is a documentary and as the credits rolled, all I could think was: That was exactly it. And now everyone knows.
Jim Knox: Big Tobacco makes its big mea culpa in court-ordered newspaper ads that started appearing Sunday and in prime-time TV spots that begin Monday. But the corrective ads won’t derail tobacco companies’ attempts to circumvent what’s in the best interest of public health.
Hilary Seligman and George Manalo-LeClair: California’s housing crisis is worsening hunger and health. For many families, rent comes before food. They skimp on food at the end of the month.
Reuven H. Taff: The fall of Charlie Rose reminds us of our dark side, but also that we can improve it. We’re mostly born with personality traits, while character largely involves defining our integrity. Character traits are based on beliefs – that honesty and treating others well is important, for example – and though beliefs can be changed, it’s far harder than most realize.
Take a number: 191,135
Alabama Senate candidates Roy Moore and Doug Jones face a deadline of Thursday to file their latest campaign finance reports. But those reports won’t necessarily show up at fec.gov until December, this for the Dec. 12 election. Under Senate Leader Mitch McConnell and Harry Reid before him, the U.S. Senate in a bipartisan display of arrogance stubbornly refuses to insist that Senate incumbents and candidates file their campaign finance reports online. That denies the public timely access to fund-raising details. Once the paper reports arrive at the Senate, hard-working Federal Elections Commission staff gather them up, pay an outside vender to input details about donors, and post the reports at fec.gov. It’s a ridiculous and wasteful process. Candidates can voluntarily file online, as Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris do. Most don’t. We pawed through Republican Moore’s post-primary report filed in October and found that California was his third largest source of campaign money at $191,135 in increments of $200 or more, after Alabama at $1 million and Texas at $275,121. California also was Jones’ third largest source of money at $66,308, after Massachusetts at $356,000 and Alabama at $475,883. All this happened before details emerged of Moore’s predilection with teenage girls. The Take expects those numbers will change significantly once the new reports appear online, in the fullness of time.
Lexington Herald Leader: If your goal is to create jobs in Eastern Kentucky – and that’s a great goal – there are many better ways than by building yet another federal prison there. As desperately as Kentucky’s mountains need economic activity, there’s just no credible case to be made for the proposed federal prison. Nonetheless, it’s in the budget that the House approved in October over the opposition of the Justice Department.
Denver Post: Colorado officials have drafted a letter warning tens of thousands of state residents that the children in their care may soon lose coverage under the Children’s Health Insurance Program, known as CHIP. It’s a sad message, and a sad testament to Congress’ inability to set aside partisan politics long enough to help protect the most vulnerable among us.
Seattle Times: Federal Communications Chairman Ajit Pai’s noxious proposal would erase net-neutrality protections established in 2015. The existing rules are essential in ensuring that the small but powerful group of companies that function as internet gatekeepers do not prioritize, throttle, block or discriminate against any information delivered by their networks. U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Washington, who tried to block Pai’s appointment, is encouraging residents and especially the business community to tell the FCC why they need the certainty and level playing field that net-neutrality rules provide.
Los Angeles Times: The California Legislature lacks clear and consistent guidelines for how to deal with a lawmaker who has been convicted of a crime, let alone accused of sexual misconduct. Without such guidelines, punishments appear to be situational and meted out in accordance with the inclination of the leadership and the popularity of the accused. That’s unacceptable.
Santa Rosa Press Democrat: California is installing an earthquake warning system. The state participates in a global tsunami alert network, and there’s a government unit dedicated to predicting floods. The goal is obvious: save lives by giving people time to prepare and, if necessary, flee. Yet in the early hours of October’s wildfires, Sonoma County authorities didn’t use, or even contemplate using, a system designed to reach virtually everyone in a disaster area.
Jared Bernstein, Washington Post: In a moment marked by political chaos, terribly nonrepresentative politics and men abusing their power, Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen has been a trailblazing woman in a male-dominated field, applying her big brain and equally large heart to the challenges presented by the modern economy.
David Brooks, New York Times: Today, we have no common national narrative, no shared way of interpreting the flow of events. Without a common story, we don’t know what our national purpose is. We have no common set of goals or ideals.
E.J. Dionne Jr., Washington Post: Republicans are lying coming and going. They hold down the sticker price of the bill and minimize its impact on the deficit by having the middle-class tax cuts (but not the corporate reductions) expire. But they insist that future Congresses would keep the middle-class tax cuts in place. So they are either lying about the deficit, or misleading the middle class.
Thomas L. Friedman, New York Times: Unlike the other Arab Springs – all of which emerged bottom up and failed miserably, except in Tunisia – this one is led from the top down by the country’s 32-year-old crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, and, if it succeeds, it will not only change the character of Saudi Arabia but the tone and tenor of Islam across the globe.
Michael Gerson, Washington Post: It is sometimes assumed that the presidency sets a moral tone for the nation. But the sexual harassment revolution emerged from society in spite of – or even in defiance of – a president who has boasted of exploiting women.
Dana Milbank, Washington Post: Famous and powerful men will continue to fall from high positions in the sexual harassment scandal. But the problem is worse for women in low-wage, low-skill jobs.
Ruben Navarrette Jr., Washington Post: The secret is out. Organizations used to ask me to speak about stories that the media covers. These days, they ask me to talk about the media itself – and its propensity toward “fake news.” How did the Fourth Estate get this far off course?
Andres Oppenheimer, Miami Herald: Venezuela is not the only nation at risk, but few pay attention. If Nicaragua and Bolivia continue on their present course, they may soon be called Latin America’s emerging dictatorships.
Kathleen Parker, Washington Post: Online shopping is expected to break records at $100 billion by the end of the holiday season, yet there are hopeful signs that humanity may resist mass-marketed gluttonous consumption. Young people are moving back to farming, and small towns are being revitalized.
Leonard Pitts Jr., Miami Herald: It wasn’t that long ago we were hearing that men were in trouble, that our manly maleness was under siege from a culture of runaway political correctness. The recent spate of sexual harassment and assault headlines suggests, not shockingly, that this concern was a tad overblown.
Eugene Robinson, Washington Post: President Donald Trump won election despite the allegations, but his victory did not erase his history. Now, virtually overnight, the paradigm for thinking about and dealing with sexual harassment has changed. A kind of Judgment Day has arrived for men who thought they had gotten away with their misdeeds.
“I am all for economic development and decent jobs for this area, but millions of dollars to incentivize them? Combine that with the tax giveaways Congress is promoting and soon we will have to pay corporations to work for them.” – Elizabeth Guzzetta, Sloughhouse