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Can’t Improve on the Lede of This Article

Jan. 8, 1976, Page C-2 

By Nancy Skelton, McClatchy Newspaper Services 

Sacramento – Peyote. Snakes. Pocketknives. Pregnant goats.

An odd combination to begin with.

Odder, still, when they come up, front and center, at a Governor’s Prayer Breakfast.

But these were subjects chosen this morning by anthropologist-writer Gregory Bateson, who delivered the main address at the annual gathering held to seek God’s help for state leaders during the coming year.

His aim, he indicated in a text released earlier, was to show that the words “religion” and “prayer” have a lot of different meanings to a lot of people.

Some Read more »



The Place of “Morality” in Public Policy

Morality can’t be legislated, the timeworn saying goes.

Two initiatives in circulation appear to attempt to do that — without defining what constitutes “moral.”

Like “reform,” morality tends to be in the eye of the beholder.

The two initiatives, which require 504,670 valid signatures before June 11 to qualify for the November ballot, use the word “moral” a total of eight times. Yet offer no definition.

One measure would allow public school students to be “excused” from listening to any part of “health, social science and family life” classes in which the topic conflicts with the “religious training and beliefs” as Read more »



From 1850: A History of California’s First 27 Counties

Among the tasks of lawmakers during California’s first legislative session, which began December 15, 1849, was naming the state’s counties.

Twenty-seven counties were established. Mariposa, for example, was the largest covering one-fifth of the state. Twelve subsequent counties were created in whole or in part out of Mariposa. Some original counties didn’t survive like Branciforte which became Santa Cruz.

On April 15, 1850, the Select Committee on the Derivation and Definition of the Names of the several Counties of the State of California filed its eponymous report.

The select committee was chaired by Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo, a California native and one of Read more »



Space is Extremely Limited! This Event Will Sell Out!

According to the Secretary of State, AT&T spent $270,001.43 in  2011 hosting the 14th Annual Speaker’s Cup at Pebble Beach, Spyglass Hill and The Links at Spanish Bay.

The “Ultimate” package — golf for four for two days — was $60,000.

Apparently, the economy is on the mend because the identical package is $65,000 this year.

Mark the calendar: May 4 and May 5

And don’t forget to include jacket and shirt size!




The More Things Change…

As adopted December 19, 1849 – four days into California’s first legislative session – the 6th Rule of the Senate reads:

“No member shall speak to another or otherwise interrupt the business of the Senate or read any newspaper while the journals or public papers are reading and while the President is putting a question, no senator shall walk out of, or across the house, nor while a senator is speaking pass between him and the chair.”

While laudable, the rule met the same fate as many other legislative efforts to regulate human behavior — particularly their own.

Englishman William Kelly, writing in Read more »



“Looking Forward to Working” for “Real Reform”

Lots of folks have lots to say about Gov. Jerry Brown’s January 18 State of the State speech, which, certainly seemed to generate more comments than the content warranted.

(Lamentably, none of these myriad statements note that the arguable highlight of the speech was use of the adjective “dystopian” in the sixth paragraph to define a certain brand of journalists the governor believes exists.)

There was a canned response, apparently filmed the day before Brown’s speech was presented, by Senate GOP leader Bob Huff of Rancho Cucamonga and Assembly GOP leader Connie Conway of Visalia.

Speaking directly to the Read more »



Couldn’t Resist: Gov. Brown Issues Short Statement on Think Long Committee’s Decision


SACRAMENTO – Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. released the following statement in response to the Think Long Committee’s decision today to place a long-term tax reform measure on the 2014 ballot: 

“Think Long is doing very important work and I look forward to working with them on the critical issue of more permanent tax reform.”




News Would Have Been If She Got Less Than 100 Percent





 Sacramento — Senator Loni Hancock, an Oakland Democrat, announced January 17 that she has received a perfect score on issues relating to workers’ rights and worker protection from the California Labor Federation. Sen. Hancock received the 100 percent rating based on her votes on 33 bills that (the union said) mattered most to California’s working families during 2011. 

“We salute Senator Hancock’s unwavering commitment to the California labor movement’s agenda of creating better jobs, stronger communities and greater opportunity for workers,” said Read more »



“…Twisted By Those Who Would Use His Name for Their Own Political Gain.”

(Editor’s Note: Donnelly is a Republican from Hesperia. He was detained and cited at Ontario International Airport on January 4  for trying to board a plane with a loaded gun in his carry-on luggage.)