Green job? What green jobs?

Remember all those “green jobs” we were promised as a part of the Obama economic plan?

Don’t you believe it.

California is likely to see modest job losses in the near term from its aggressive climate change policy due to higher energy costs and other factors, the state’s independent Legislative Analyst’s Office said. Skip related content

The budget watchdog was responding to a request by Republican state Senator Dave Cogdill to study the effects of California’s 2006 climate change law, which mandates changes to cut greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020.

California’s environmental vanguard approach is being hotly debated in the state ahead of a November gubernatorial race and in the midst of an economic downturn that has pushed unemployment to recent records. Many other states and the federal government are watching closely.

“We believe that the aggregate net jobs impact in the near term is likely to be negative,” said the report, dated March 4. “Reasons for this include the various economic dislocations, behavioral adjustments, investment requirements, and certain other factors,” it said.

Once again, reality and economics trumps politics and wishful thinking.

Local taxes not enough – California town to charge $300 for 911 calls

This summer Tracy, California plans to charge residents a $300 fee for 911 medical calls unless you have “purchased” a $48 annual subscription. In my opinion, user fees for parks and other state and local recreation activities may be appropriate, but for emergency services?

Read more

Right to carry bill scheduled for hearing in California

Some California residents may think this is a long shot, but an effort is in place to move legislation through the California legislature to make it easier for law-abiding citizens to carry a pistol in the Golden State.

Read more

California demands US taxpayers bail them out

This is what it has come to. The state of California is sending dignitaries from the state’s legislature to the east coast “early and often” to demand taxpayers give more money to the Golden State. Government sponsored theft it is I tell you!

Read more

California rips off taxpayer – increases withholding 10 percent

For those of you who jump for joy at the thought of a big tax “refund” check, you’ll be plenty happy in California since they will be increasing the withholding amount 10 percent this weekend. The state is going to borrow money from you interest free – money you do not owe in taxes – and you might get it back later. Take action – adjust your withholding now!

Read more

End to Jeep Wrangler soft-tops in California?

New environmental regulations to be implemented in California would require special auto glass to reflect heat and reduce the need for air-conditioning. The law may require Chrysler to stop selling soft-top Wranglers and only offer the hard top, full-glass version of the popular Jeep. The regulations could also limit cell phone, GPS and other radio signals.

Read more

If I were you, I’d stop doing business with the state of California

It’s bad enough the situation in California requires the state to dish out IOUs to residents and small business owner who are owed refunds or contract payments, but now the state will not allow IOUs to be used as payment for amounts owed to the state itself.

Read more

Teachers on both coasts paid to do nothing

I remember reading about this a couple of years ago. Now seems like a good time to bring it up again to see if there would be any backlash, and the Los Angeles Times has the story written by Jason Song. Teachers across California and in New York City are being paid their full salary and benefits – in some cases for years – while education bureaucrats try to figure out if they are fit to teach.

From the Times, with my emphasis in bold.

Every school day, [Matthew] Kim’s shift begins at 7:50 a.m., with 30 minutes for lunch, and ends when the bell at his old campus rings at 3:20 p.m. He is to take off all breaks, school vacations and holidays, per a district agreement with the teacher’s union. At no time is he to be given any work by the district or show up at school.

He has never missed a paycheck.

In the jargon of the school district, Kim is being “housed” while his fitness to teach is under review. A special education teacher, he was removed from Grant High School in Van Nuys and assigned to a district office in 2002 after the school board voted to fire him for allegedly harassing teenage students and colleagues. In the meantime, the district has spent more than $2 million on him in salary and legal costs.

Last week, Kim was ordered to continue this daily routine at home. District officials said the offices for “housed” employees were becoming too crowded.

Do read the entire article at the Times’ Web site. It also includes a video report.

Why? Union contracts. Previously, these teachers were assigned duties that did not involve teaching students, but district officials are…

…prohibited from assigning chores under the contract with the teachers’ union. Although there is no specific reference in the contract to housed employees, an attorney for L.A. Unified pointed to Article 9, Section 4.0, which defines the “professional duties” of a teacher, such as instructional planning and evaluating the work of pupils.

With no mention of photocopying, stuffing envelopes or answering telephones in the contract, the district and union have interpreted this provision as prohibiting clerical duties.

“Why would we denigrate [teachers] by forcing them to do something they’re not supposed to do?” said A. J. Duffy, who is now president of UTLA, adding that housed teachers are entitled to a presumption of innocence.

Look, either they are fit to teach or not. If not, they should find another job.

Would this work in the private sector? Hell no, unless of course your backed by the United Auto Workers, they too seem to get paid for doing nothing. These union contracts are unsustainable and destroying the productivity of this country.

As Malkin says

Nice non-work if you can get it.

Stimulus money for sale. Update: Deal Off

Cities in California that can not use stimulus  money appropriated for transportation are selling their stimulus money to other cities for cash. Check it out here.

La Habra Heights, a city of 6,000, has sold its $500,000 in federal funds to the city of Westlake Village for $310,000 cash. Irwindale, population 1,500, also sold its $500,000 to Westlake Village, for $325,000 cash.

Does anyone think that this money was misappropriated? If the money is earmarked for transportation grants, shouldn’t the city have to write a grant to get the money? How is it that they just get money appropriated for something for which they do not have a need?  I honestly do not blame the cities, their solution is actually very clever.

I’m sure many cities have higher priorities than transportation. And I would have liked to have seen more direct aid to ailing local governments in the stimulus bill. Still, MTA’s approach strikes me as a bit too creative. What’s next, stimulus money credit default swaps?

I would gladly sell stimulus money credit default swaps, it’s not like we could every default on US treasury bonds. RIGHT?  China seems to be getting a little nervous.

Jim adds: Hope n change brothers and sisters. HOPE AND CHANGE.

Update: It’s a little complicated … but the deal’s off … cities cannot sell their stimulus money in California …. apparently they have to use it or loose it.

Several area cities that arranged to sell off federal stimulus funding intended for transportation projects scrambled Wednesday for ways to use the money or trade it, one day after the MTA axed such deals.The cities – La Habra Heights, Irwindale, Bradbury and Rolling Hills – now must either submit so called “shovel-ready” projects to the MTA, or trade their stimulus tax dollars for equal amounts of Measure R transportation funds. The cities have until Friday to do so, said Carol Inge, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s chief planning officer.

Oh well … such are the ways of the government. Capitalism is very out of fashion, especially when governments try it.

The other (baby) shoe drops…

The California octuplet story takes yet another twisted twist…  From the UK Times.

THE single mother of octuplets born in California last week is seeking $2m (£1.37m) from media interviews and commercial sponsorship to help pay the cost of raising the children.

Nadya Suleman, 33, plans a career as a television childcare expert after it emerged last week that she already had six children before giving birth on Monday. She now has 14 below the age of eight.

Although still confined to an LA hospital bed, she intends to talk to two influential television hosts this week — media mogul Oprah Winfrey, and Diane Sawyer, who presents Good Morning America.

Now, just what sort of genius comes up with this sort of plan?

Angela Suleman, who is caring for the first six children — one of whom is autistic — while her daughter is in hospital, said yesterday that she had consulted a psychologist over Nadya’s “obsession with children”.

Nadya Suleman, who describes herself as a “professional student” living off education grants and parental money, broke up with her boyfriend before the birth of her first child seven years ago.

One wonders what the doctors were thinking (*IF* they were thinking) when they implanted the unmarried “professional student and mother of six (including one autistic son) with *EIGHT* embryos in contradiction of professional guidance that only two to three embryos be implanted in this sort of procedure.

As result, I suspect that Ms. Suleman, professional student, will have her dreams dashed upon the harsh reality that her scenario doesn’t  generate the sympathetic interested that these events, when happening to a childless couple desperate to have a child, is suddenly rewarded with a nursery-full of children…