View Full Version : From Terminator to Mad Max

12-09-05, 11:02 AM
As some of the Californian Safehousers probably are aware, the California Republican Party is extremely upset about Arnold Schwartzeneggar's choice of chief of staff, a Democrat. They are so upset that the California Republican Assembly has set up a website for its candidate for governor (http://www.melgibsonforgovernor.com/) in 2006 (or is it 2007?).

PS - Note that they didn't put a picture of the crazy-Saddam-Hussein-lookalike-version on the site.

12-09-05, 11:11 AM
This brings up a question. Has Arnold been a bad gov? I mean for the most part me in timbuktoo only get to hear the controversial stuff he does but the same would be for any gov.

Good,bad,ugly how has he been?

12-09-05, 11:16 AM
Under the circumstances Arnold came out of the gate strong, and pushed the reforms he claimed he would push..

But part of that was going againts unions. A nobel goal, and it backfired on him. The unions spent a ton of money to campaign againts his special election and they all fell in defeat.

If he hadnt of been brough in as a replacemnt for the recall of Davis I think expectations would have been differnt, and he woudl be considered in a differnt light today.

But im not sure you could say he has been a bad governor.

12-09-05, 11:29 AM
From an outsiders point of view, it appears that he misjudged the people of California. He thought he had a mandate to reform the state, when really people were just mostly upset about electricity shortages.

Schwartzeneggar won a popularity contest against child actors, porn stars, and uninspiring career politicians, and when he tried to push reform down the throats of the mostly still popular California Assembly, he began to lose popularity. He didn't help himself with all the sound bites talking about "kicking the butts" of the nursing, teaching and firefighter unions, which are all very popular in the state.

Plus, I think he's probably reaping a bit of the fair-weather mentality that got him elected in the first place. Gray Davis was booted out of office a year after he was elected for a second term, and the movement to do so began just a few months after his re-election. When a public is that wishy-washy, its not completely unexpected to see popular sentiment shift like that again.

12-09-05, 11:40 AM
Whenever debate about arnold rears up all we need to do is provide this quote..

From an outsiders point of view, it appears that he misjudged the people of California. He thought he had a mandate to reform the state, when really people were just mostly upset about electricity shortages.

That sums it up perfectly.. although his misjudgement is more due to Californians being a rather fickle and finicky bunch with the attention spams of gnats.. But you didnt hear that from me.

12-09-05, 11:48 AM
How bad a job did Davis do anyway? I thought the power shortages were due more to Enron than anything else?

12-09-05, 01:07 PM
Actually, the power shortages were due to the half-assed power industry deregulation negotiated between Republican governor Pete Wilson and the Democrat-controlled legislature.

Electricity generation and provision were separated. The idea was that the power companies would buy power from the cheapest providers. This is a basic aspect of supply/demand.

There were a number of problems with the system California ended up with. One was that power companies had caps on the prices they were allowed to charge customers. Another was that they were not allowed to hedge against price volatility. A third problem was that the power companies were not allowed to sign long-term contracts. They had to purchase off the spot market.

Well, electricity prices are among the most volatile commodies. Power providers had no insulation from wildly fluctuating prices, and could not pass on the cost to consumers. This set-up worked for a few years. Unfortunately, in 2000, there was a drought in the west. Since a lot of power out west is generated by dams, this cut the amount of power available on the spot markets significantly.

Prices rose drastically, and the power companies went into major amounts of debt buying power and selling it to consumers on the cheap. Eventually, the power companies in California defaulted on their bonds, and on their electricity payments. Electricity generators had other customers to sell to, so they didn't sell as much to California.

Gray Davis is best described by his last name: Gray. He didn't have any interesting ideas or come up with any great policies. He kind of blended into the background. He was the ultimate Clinton clone, waiting to see what the public opinion polls said before taking any action at all. He had no backbone.

He really didn't deserve a 2nd term, but he managed to get re-elected mostly by avoiding any controversy in his first term.

12-09-05, 01:37 PM
Davis might have won the recall if he had deflected the state's anger about brownouts and blackouts and a emergency energy contracts, to manipulation of the energy markets by Enron. He ran the worst campaign possible.

I don't think Arnold has been a bad governor. The problem is he took on opponents that were too powerful, the unions. The Democrats and their groups, saturated the media with negative ads in the same way Republicans have in their successful campaigns, and they succeeded in the same way. His reputation was tarnished as a liar and a political pawn, and he lost big in his special election. After Schwartzenegger chose the former Davis staffer to be the chief of staff, a Democratic spokesperson talked about how ironic the staffer was now working for "Bush's boy." Schwartzenegger is miles from that description, if anything it appears that Bush views Schwartzenegger's brand of moderation as a threat to the party. Bush failed to reward Schwartzenegger with anything when he asked for help with the state budget after his election.