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Good luck trimming budget of $1.6 m

Vice Mayor Couper Condit talks a lot about adding police officers to reach the 1.3 peace officers per thousand residents ratio. But at last week’s emergency budget meeting – it was only an emergency because two days prior the one-member-short City Council found itself deadlocked, once again, over approval of the budget – he led the charge for the city manager to trim $1.6 million from the budget so that the city doesn’t dip into reserves.

I’m all for balanced budgets but you can’t have your balanced budget without cuts to employees. About 75 percent of the general fund is employees. Since about 80 percent of the General Fund budget is spent on public safety, Condit cannot expect there not to be cuts to police officers and firefighters. He will most certainly make hay, once again, about eliminating the council’s stipend and benefits, which is a small percentage of the $1.6 million to be pared. What next? Cut code enforcement? Parks? Streets? Engineering? Recreation? Close the Community Center which has that ongoing operational deficit which he constantly mentions that needs to be fixed?

All of this is unnecessary since federal money is coming soon from the American Rescue Plan, and since the city saved money during the 2020-21 fiscal year in salary savings.

It’s more about burning down the house for political posturing.

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If California was a person it would be that spiteful neighbor who won’t look at you because he doesn’t like something about you. The state is forbidding its employees from traveling or doing business with a number of states which have passed laws which they don’t like. It’s a horrible thing for a neighbor to do. There are only 50 states and California has to be the biggest jerk on the block. California is that neighbor who doesn’t believe in the concept of “live and let live,” instead in the concept of payback for the way that you want to live.

Sacramento passes all sorts of bills which are out of sync with the values of most of people in the Valley yet they don’t respect the rights of states to pass laws which are in accordance with most of their residents. Lawmakers pass all sorts of ludicrous and onerous laws for Californians to live under and then meddle in the affairs of other states passing laws for their citizens. California is the bully of the United States, of course because it’s ruled by one party, the Democrat party, that doesn’t prize the right of self-determination or the Constitution.

I thought Democrats were against travel bans. They squealed like stuck pigs when President Trump banned travel from Muslim dominated countries because the Islamic terrorists were streaming out of there. And when Trump banned China travel at the outset of the COVID breakout, Biden called him xenophobic but later accused the president of not doing enough. But now Democrats think travel bans are hunky dory when it comes to punishing red states which pass conservative laws.

In case you haven’t heard, California is now trying to punish Florida by saying no state travel to that state. Now there are 17 states on California’s s***t list.

What heinous crime did Florida commit in the eyes of state Attorney General Rob Banta? Not allowing transgender females (um, biological males who are trying to be females but who aren’t) from playing on girls teams in public schools. Seems like common sense to most of us, but leave it to the LGBTQ community to see it as “another hate-driven attack from the governor and Republican legislators” said Florida State Sen. Shevrin Jones, a Democrat.

I’m embarrassed how our state treats others states with disrespect and I think turnaround is fair play. If Florida wants to dismiss travel to California so be it. Give Sacramento a taste of its own medicine.

Many of California’s problems are caused by inept state leaders who are more concerned about catering to men dressing as women than dealing with social engineering, sticking their nose in other states’ backyards, mollycoddling criminals and illegal aliens and driving up the cost of everything with their policies – housing, gas. But I don’t think I want them working on “solutions” because they typically make matters worse with their ideology. So what we should all try to do is change out the leaders. Democrats control everything so why not elect more Republicans and see what they can do?

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Gun owners who value the right to keep and bear arms, might want to think twice about ever moving to San Jose (like you’d want to anyway).

The City Council there, in its attempt to destroy the rights of law-abiding gun owners, has passed an ordinance stating that San Jose residents must have liability insurance and pay an annual fee to keep their gun. I hope that the NRA lawyers are on the plane to San Jose to file a lawsuit.

It’s a knee-jerk – and unconstitutional – reaction to the employee shooting up the VMA workplace recently. The tax on guns will do nothing to curb gun violence and will only punish the good folks who want to protect themselves within their own domain.

San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo framed this as a way of getting more money to help pay for the $442 million annual cost of public safety responding to incidences of gun violence. He said: “We’ve got to do more to ensure that burdens are property borne by those who choose to exercise their right to own a gun and to ensure that those fees and insurance requirements will incentivize safer gun ownership.”

No surprise, Liccardo is a Demcrat. 

It’s your typical socialist mindset. Making people who don’t misuse their guns to pay for the thugs who do misuse their guns is about as ludicrous as making everyone who shops at Whole Foods to pay for the cost of first-responders in dealing with heart attacks of the junk food junkies and couch potatoes who don’t take of their health.

Liberals often make misguided decisions that do nothing to reduce gun violence but do erode constitutional freedoms of the individual having a tool at their disposal for their own protection. The same politicians embrace the defunding of police, which means the next time some bad actor is breaking through your window to come kidnap your kid or steal your stuff the cops won’t be there to save you until after you’re dead. I suppose that the San Jose City Council would prefer

that their citizens arm themselves with a fireplace poker stick or a baseball bat rather than the effective means of neutralizing an evil criminal at much greater distances.

The city of San Jose website noted: “Of course, criminals won’t obey these mandates. Yet together, these rules create a constitutionally-compliant mechanism to enable law enforcement to impound guns from high-risk individuals unwilling to follow the law.”

I’m stunned they admit that criminals won’t obey laws. Duh. But they admit that they are willing to grab guns from people who won’t – dare I say can’t afford – to follow their law. And there is nothing constitutionally compliant about the law.

Voters of California must start waking up and quit electing people to city, state and national office who seek to destroy our freedoms in the name of safety. Yes, workplace violence is tragic but no gun tax will stop a madman intent to kill in retribution to the wrongs that he feels he has suffered. It’s a futile exercise. If somebody wants to shoot up a workplace they will do it no matter what ridiculous law the liberals have passed. However, those laws will keep the peaceful citizenry absolutely unable to defend themselves.

* * * * *

Americans need to start waking up as to the disastrous policies of Joseph Biden on the border. Remember, he signaled for them to come and now they are here. They think they’re being sneaky with their “catch and bus” policy, bussing and flying in illegal immigrants from South America and Mexico into heartland cities of swing states.

A senior national security office for the Center of Immigration Studies as estimating nearly 30,000 illegal immigrants having been bused into the country since Biden took office. And they are going mostly to red states.

“Immediately overwhelmed and unwilling to return children with their parents, Biden’s [Department of Homeland Security] began handing out legal permission slips to pursue more permanent legal status later and put them on outward-bound buses,” CIS noted in its report.

“This practice, in turn, only propelled the crisis because, naturally, its satisfied beneficiaries passed on word of the new catch-and-bus practice on social media networks and calls home. A kind of gold rush began over the frontier that has only gathered volume and intensity by the day.”

Of course, Politifact dismisses the claims as “false” with no explanation.

Really, Politifact? WRCB TV in Chattanooga reported Chattanooga’s Wilson Air Center is receiving planes carrying migrant children who are being bused to multiple southeastern cities during overnight hours. U.S. Senator Bill Hagerty said he was unaware of the flights into Chattanooga, but said, “It is time for President Biden to be transparent with Tennesseans and the American people regarding where the hundreds of thousands of migrants being resettled in the United States are being sent because they deserve to know.”

* * * * *

Americans are righteously indignant over Americans like athlete Gwen Berry and actress Rosanna Arquette who show their blatant disregard for the United States, its flag, its history.

As you know, Berry disrespected the flag and National Anthem after winning the bronze medal in an Olympic qualifier. Many like me have suggested she has no right representing the United States for that attitude. 

Coming to Berry’s defense is the Hollywood ilk like Arquette who said, “«I don’t know about you but if the flag and star spangled banner comes around me I kneel in solidarity and will for the rest of my life.” Strange language coming from an actress who found success in the country she hates so much.

I know I will not be watching any movies featuring Arquette. You might say it’s my way of bending my knee in solidarity to anti-patriots!

I borrowed this: “Hating your country is like hating your parents and still living in their home. Move out and be happy somewhere else.”’

* * * * *

I feel like a voice crying in the wilderness but it’s time for government to go on a fat-free diet.

As Newsom plans to send those making under $75,000 per year a $600 stimulus check as a way of bribing us to not support his recall, Republicans have been run over in their attempts to get state spending under control.

The state has a surplus of about $80 billion – thanks to Uncle Joe who is mortgaging America’s future children as he runs the money printing presses at full speed ahead. Not surprisingly the state is spending more on social programs, giving free healthcare to those who snuck across the border instead of being deported and accommodating the ever-powerful teachers union. No money for water storage projects (as you know, building dams is against the Religion of the Democrat Party).

Assemblyman Heath Flora voted against the state budget because the Democrats don’t are unwilling to pay back the $7.8 billion they stole last year from the state’s Rainy Day Fund. Flora, a Republican, said” “It made sense to dip into our savings when we thought the pandemic budget deficit would be over $50 billion” but that it only seems fair that since the state drained the $8 billion in savings and then ended up with an $80 billion surplus and that it should pay back that “loan” (read that as theft) with less than 10 percent of the state surplus. Thanks to the one party rule in California, all of the Republicans’ amendments were defeated.

* * * * *

When federal judge Roger Benitez struck down California’s 32-year ban on assault weapons last month, Gov. Newom blew a gasket. Benitez found the law unconstitutional and defended the use of an AR-15 rifle, calling it “the perfect combination of home defense weapon and homeland defense equipment.” He compared it to a Swiss Army Knife. Benitez’s ruling was refreshing; for once a judge held up the Second Amendment.

Newsom and his merry marauders of the Democrat Party put on the war paint and rattled their spears as the war cry sent up. The governor, who is not used to anyone keeping him in check, pouted at a press conference: “We need to call this federal judge out. He will continue to do damage, mark my word. They (gun proponents) are judge shopping….this is a very focused effort to work through this judge, where the decision is already made before it is presented.” He called the judge “a stone cold ideologue” and “a wholly owned subsidiary of the gun lobby and the National Rifle Association.”

God knows how the Democrats control the Ninth District Court of Appeals.

Well, last week the San Diego County Bar Association shot back at Newsom for opening his mouth, saying judges must be allowed to rule “free from political influence.” They also said that public officials “should uphold public confidence in the judicial system and utilize existing mechanisms for expressing legitimate complaints against the judiciary concerning bias or other judicial misconduct.”

They note that the governor can disagree all he wants but “attacking the personal character of the judge rather than the substance of the legal ruling undermines public confidence in the judiciary and its role in interpreting and applying the law.”

The Firearms Policy Coalition also blasted Newsom for his “outrageous and callous personal attacks” on Benitez, saying he “shows deep and continuing disrespect for the rule of law, the judiciary, the Constitution, and the human rights of California citizens.”

Newsom really needs to go.

This column is the opinion of Jeff Benziger, and does not necessarily represent the opinion of The Ceres Courier or 209 Multimedia Corporation. How do you feel about this? Let Jeff know at