We met about thirty five years ago in a small kayak store in Venice, CA. Together we slid through the water with pods of friendly dolphins and visited with sea lion harems, flocks of scoters, stately herons, little brown bat rays, brilliant red sea urchins, and lazy leopard sharks.

Governor Newsom has laid out an ambitious agenda: including more housing and more affordable housing, universal pre-school, universal health coverage, tax reform and more. All of these cost money, and there are very real budgetary limits. Many will require the cooperation of multiple interest groups frequently at war with each other and gubernatorial leadership will have to mesh these competing agendas. Ultimately many will need approval by the state’s voters.

UCLA’s Anderson Business School is forecasting economic growth over 3% this year, dropping to 2% in 2019 and falling to 1% in 2020. It sees the chief risks to the economy are: the trade wars and tariffs, the large corporate debts being incurred in mergers and acquisitions, and the drag of the large federal budget deficits generated by the federal tax cuts and spending.

The LAO notes that headed into the next fiscal year, California will have reserves of $14.5 billion and an additional $14.8 billion for the Legislature and new Governor to allocate in the next fiscal year. Looking out further, the LAO notes that if the economy enters a recession, California will have sufficient reserves to weather the recession, assuming 1) it’s a moderate recession and 2) the state does not spend its current surplus. If the economy continues to grow the state will have operating surpluses of $4.5 billion annually.

 In the single payer systems, private doctors and hospitals deliver the services and government pays their bills for your services. We have a next-door neighbor, Canada, with a single payer system that works reasonably well. Medicare is a single payer system for the elderly and disabled and works well for them. Some well-run European systems like France and Norway are single payer, and their citizens are reasonably happy with the results. Single payer is not the only way to universal coverage. The Germans, Dutch and Swiss all have universal coverage using private insurance, whether through employers or individuals.

The election results are step one of a four-step process to return democracy to our nation. I think the next step is the 2020 election where Democrats and Republicans need to purge President Trump and his faithful corrupt acolytes. After that gerrymandering and voter suppression must be eliminated, and the corrosive elements of special interest financing have to be curtailed. Finally we will need to re-build the independence of the judiciary.  

President Trump’s campaign in 2016 and 2018 is all about bashing illegal immigrants and the policies of the administration have been consistent with his campaign rhetoric. He is not just lying to the American people about immigrants. He is damaging our long term economic growth

Asylum, Sanctuary and Refuge


Asylum dates back to medieval times when an individual could seek refuge or sanctuary against persecution in a church. It is one of the hallmarks of civilization, and an important element of one’s humanity.

My wife Katie has worked on getting better results for public school kids as long and as diligently as I have worked on health care for the uninsured. We know Marshall Tuck very well and have seen what he can do in turning around poor performing schools. At the very top of his platform are more funding for public schools and greater support for teachers.  https://marshalltuck.com/invest-in-our-teachers-and-principals/ and https://marshalltuck.com/issues/classrooms-that-are-fully-funded/

We have some very big problems that need to be addressed by our federal, state and local elected officials. Voting has never been more important, so please vote in the November midterms and get all your friends, family and colleagues to vote as well.