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The state passes bad laws, while cities take the brunt

The way I see it, the state has done a pretty good job of screwing cities. This is, of course, on top of screwing the average citizen and taxpayer.

Not many of you are aware that state lawmakers will mandate all these things for cities to do and then the poor city councils take the brunt of it. It’s not like many people will storm the gates of the state Capitol so they’re insulated from their damaging actions.

Take for example the complaints about peddlers on the street. Ceres residents have expressed concerns about the guys ringing the bells or honking obnoxious horns on their little bicycle carts peddling ice creams and other things in their neighborhoods. Or the flower vendors standing out at rural intersections. It has the earmarks of an impoverished Third World nation like Mexico or all of South America. When a complaint was brought up recently at the Ceres City Council, Mayor Chris Vierra had to break it to the resident that state Democrats have taken control away for local regulation when they passed SB 946. People like state Senator Anna Caballero was one of those who wanted to take away local control, saying last April, “many communities were just banning it altogether.”

Well, Anna dear, there is a reason that cities were banning that activity.

Sacramento lawmakers have also told cities that they must allow homeless people sleeping overnight in their parks if no shelter beds are available. Sacramento also dictated that police can’t stop people from parking on their streets to sleep in cars.

Sacramento is all about robbing local control.

It’s time for a part-time legislator like in Texas to limit the damage this Democrat Party controlled Legislature does.

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I actually find no pleasure in arguing on Facebook because it wins over nobody. But I also cannot let incorrect statements go unchallenged, which means that I tend to disagree with my eldest son 99 percent of the time.

My son throws fits over Trump. I mean absolute fits, calling him an illegitimate president when he was duly elected by the people and the Electoral College system that has been in place since our founding.

He was more than eager to jump on Wednesday’s media dogpile narrative that Trump is responsible for what they predict is an impending recession – and giddy to blame it on him. This comes despite the signs that no recession is on the way. The same people like my son who never would be honest and give Trump credit for a strong economy would absolutely blame Trump for a recession – if one comes under his term. Ironically the media wants you to think one is coming and mark my words, they will push the idea that a recession is coming as the election nears right as a way of a self-fulfilling proficiency. By that I mean the media will harp all day about a recession coming and people will believe it and scale back on buying homes or furniture or cars or TVs and thus slow the economy.

Whenever you hear ALL the media using the exact same talking points in unison you know there is collusion to get rid of Trump.

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Most of the people who commented on the Courier’s Facebook page agreed with my summation that guns are not the real issue in regards to mass shootings and that it’s a problem of certain individuals. I called them “defective” human beings to which Crystal McCoy questioned with “Defective people?” David Eckhardt backed me up on my terminology, saying: “yeah, I’d say if you shoot a bunch of people up you’re defective.”

I actually borrowed the term from the movie, “The Jerk” when Steve Martin is working at the service station and being shot at by a crazed killer across the street. Navin R. Johnson thinks oil cans are exploding because they’re defective but his boss, Harry Hartounian, explains, “We don’t have defective cans, we have a defective person out there!”

Ceres resident Chris Henry said I was asking the questions that “everyone should be asking.”

Frankie Alvarez suggested that he’s “so sick of this guy,” meaning me. He declined my invitation to write a letter to the editor. Of course, it’s easy to take shots from the cheap seats but when it comes to putting together a thoughtful, well-written opinion piece based on logic, some just can’t rise to the challenge.

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As proof that they are delusional in Sacramento, Democrats are offering Senate Bill (SB) 310 which would allow felons to serve on juries. This stupid proposal makes no distinction between violent and non-violent offenders and allows convicted felons who are still on probation or parole to serve.

People with common sense – unlike the lack of common sense prevalent in Sacramento – realize that people who have been busted by police, convicted by juries and sent to jail or prison might have a propensity to go easy on others accused of crimes. It’s called jury nullification.

Hughson Police Services ran an online survey and there was 95 percent opposition to the insane plan.

While Democrats in Sacramento want felons to be able to vote – because they sure as hell wouldn’t vote for tough-on-crime Republicans – the rest of us see a problem with that too.

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Okay, I have to share this meme.

I mentioned before that my grandmother – who was white like me – had it so rough in rural Oklahoma that she once had to eat banana peelings for lunch because there was no money for food. They also heated up potatoes, stuck them in their pocket to warm their hands, and ate them for lunch.

This meme shows a photo of poor white children circa 1910 or 1920 with the caption: “White privilege – the ability to suffer life’s universal indignities without blaming another ethnic group.”

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County Supervisor Jim DeMartini pointed out to me that Democrats in Sacramento want to negate Trump’s estate tax reduction. The president and Congress enacted estate tax exemptions of $11.4 million per person (or $22.8 million for couples) but state lawmakers want to make their own estate tax with a much lower exemption. Try $3.5 million (and $7 million for a couple).

SB 378 seeks to place a measure on next year’s ballot also to direct these taxes – estimated to steal $500 million to $1 billion annually – on estate inheritances into a “Children’s Wealth and Opportunity Building Fund.” In other words, it’s a socialist program to rob those who rightfully inherit property and give it to complete strangers who have no entitlement to that money. It’s a Robin Hood scheme for sure.

Anne Price, who must be a socialist as president of the Insight Center for Community Economic Development, endorsed the bill and said: “…much of our economic policy is built on the long-standing false belief that anyone can make it financially through grit, resilience and hard work.” Are you kidding me? The Left is always trying to dissuade people that hard work pays off and how they need to depend on the Almighty God of Government to make it.

Of course people can and do make it economically through hard work. Millions do it every day. We go to work and we pay our bills. I’ve done it for nearly 40 years and I have a house to show for it. That’s called success and we do it despite the government stealing a lot of our paycheck.

I find it absolutely hilarious how the Democrats put spins on things, too. A press release from state Senator Wiener (he is one) announcing the immoral bill states a positive as a negative: “As a result of these actions over the past two decades, we now have the highest estate tax exemption in United States history…” How that should read is, thanks to the Republicans, government takes less from what should rightfully stay in your family.

With their mentality it wouldn’t surprise me in the least if Democrats pass a bill to take 40 percent of the proceeds of your house when you sell it and stick it in a fund for the poor. When that happens, it’s time to wage holy war on Sacramento.

Dolores Huerta, that extreme socialist born from the farm laborer’s movement, suggests that people keeping their families’ property and wealth is “total corruption.” Hey Huerta, it’s total corruption for you to steal what doesn’t belong to you!

We really have entered the days when evil doers call what is good evil and evil good. Look no farther for evidence of Huerta’s socialist mantra.

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Another weird vote from Channce Condit.

For two decades the city has had Community Facilities Districts. They were designed to be placed on new housing to pay for the operations of police, fire and parks. There are two such districts and owners have been paying special taxes on these for years. They knew it when they bought their houses.

On the agenda was an inflationary increase in those special taxes.

Condit asked a few questions about the districts and assessments – which exposed his lack of understanding of the issue – and without so much as an explanation, voted no on the increase of the existing tax. He was the only one of the five who voted no.

It’s a strange vote given how Condit has suggested that new growth pay its own way.

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The Left has waged war on the right to bear arms for decades. With each shooting we hear the hue and cry for more gun control, even though all the mass shooters violate existing laws to do their dirty deeds.

But you’ll not find more hypocrisy than on the Left. Illinois state Sen. Martin Sanodval, a Democrat had to apologize for the fact that a fundraiser held for him featured a mock assassination of President Trump, decked out in Mexican garb. A series of photos of the mock shooting appeared on his Facebook page.

Hollywood is guilty too. Really, a movie about hunting and shooting conservatives? We should all protest that one.

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