Karen Bass Should Dissolve The Terrorists And Elect Another

Politics & Current Events

In the course of a wide-ranging interview with the Los Angeles Times, California State Assembly speaker Karen Bass laments that her fellow Californians enjoy the right to vote, to speak, and to petition their government for the redress of grievances:

How do you think conservative talk radio has affected the Legislature's work?

The Republicans were essentially threatened and terrorized against voting for revenue. Now [some] are facing recalls. They operate under a terrorist threat: "You vote for revenue and your career is over." I don't know why we allow that kind of terrorism to exist. I guess it's about free speech, but it's extremely unfair.

What Bass, a Democrat, calls "terrorist threats" against her Republican colleagues is what most Americans call the exercise of First Amendment rights.  It's one of those outdated traditions in American politics that any drooling troglodyte can communicate his displeasure to elected representatives.

In fact, I understand that under federal and California law, Bass herself might be subject to "terrorist threats" from her own constituents, people like my friend Ezra, who enjoys the freedom to call her office and say, "You vote to cut spending on the Greater Los Angeles Area Pacific Islander Parade subsidy and county calligraphy budgets, and your career is over."

Now a charitable person, a very charitable person, might assume that Bass is referring only to talk radio hosts as "terrorists" here, and that she actually meant to make some incredibly inept argument for the return of the "fairness doctrine" in radio.  Unfortunately Republican talk radio hosts also enjoy the right to engage in terrorism as Bass defines it.  A less charitable person might say that Bass was referring to Republican voters, whom everyone knows are poorly educated and lack understanding of the importance of tax increases in an economic crisis, or something, and that …

No I'm stumped.  There's no way to be charitable to Bass, the elected speaker of the California assembly, who just called voters who dare to complain to their representatives terrorists.  Her statement positively drips with contempt for the rubes she was elected to serve.  If only she could lock them up…

Well, maybe she can.  Buried deeper in the interview is this fascinating tidbit.

I do think that some fundamental reforms need to take place. I would be concerned about a constitutional convention, only because, as I understand it, if you open that door up, all kinds of things can be put on the agenda, like [abortion rights]. While we're trying to solve this budget crisis, we are also figuring out how to launch reforms that would address some of it.

But why not hold a constitutional convention Ms. Bass?  Sure, it might open up the door to things you don't like, but you're the California Assembly speaker.  You're one of the most powerful people in the state.  I'm sure you can finesse it, and get a brand-spanking new constitution which finally allows you to lock up those terrorists who dare to complain to the State.

And it would work too, if only it weren't for that meddling United States constitution.

Via Patterico.

Last 5 posts by Patrick Non-White

16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. Ken  •  Jun 29, 2009 @1:19 pm

    I hate you for getting to this before I could rant about it. Curses!

  2. Ezra  •  Jun 29, 2009 @2:15 pm

    Between Bass & Feinstein, we have a long and proud tradition of ignoring our constituents here in California. But, you're for a constitutional convention in California but not in Honduras?

  3. Patrick  •  Jun 29, 2009 @2:17 pm

    Clarify your terms Ezra.

  4. Denny  •  Jun 29, 2009 @5:36 pm

    Glad to see that I am not the only citizen outraged by Bass' comments. In addition to the stupid (and basically fascist) terrorist comment, there is this exchange:
    Q) As an African American woman, are you able to do things a white man would not be able to?
    A) No, I think it's a lot easier for white men, absolutely…If you're the overwhelming majority, you function that way.

    Hmmm…white men are the overwhelming majority? Let's see, non-Latino whites make up about 43% of the CA population, and let's assume males make up 50% of the population. By my calculations, that means white males make up 21.5% of CA's population. I think Karen needs to look up the definition of "majority".

    Here's another nugget: "My job is to protect programs, but I can't be unrealistic and say we're not going to cut." And here I thought her job was to represent her constituents and maybe protect them, instead of the programs that all the tax and spend Democrats have foisted on the state.

  5. mojo  •  Jun 30, 2009 @8:15 am

    And it would work too, if only it weren’t for that meddling United States constitution.

    And those darned kids and their dog!

  6. BikerPuppy  •  Jul 1, 2009 @11:07 am

    Amen!!!!

  7. Jamo  •  Jul 2, 2009 @3:21 pm

    The more I read and hear from this Bass character the more it makes sense of how a 3rd grader could run this state better. Fucken morons, fucked up our state soo bad, we should hold a hanging and hang the state senate, F the constitutional convention.

  8. Ken  •  Jul 2, 2009 @4:36 pm

    Sorry for the delay in your post, Jamo. I had to rescue it from the spam filter. Apparently the software doesn't like lynching jokes any more than I do.

    So, presented with a politician who overreacts to voter activism by calling it "terrorism", your response is to one-up her by calling for the hanging of politicians?

    Are you familiar with the concept of irony?

  9. john  •  Jul 8, 2009 @9:31 am

    In My Opinion: I think we should consider re-writing the California constitution, and include limiting term limits. Not only that, I think we need more people to be elected or appointed who have a broader spectrum of knowledge who have the best interest in mind for the people of California. We need to be able to weed out, and get rid of the small mindedness, career money bought politicians, who are paid to enact legislation that benefit only a minority.

  10. TomH  •  Jul 8, 2009 @11:51 am

    Altruistic and wise politicians do not exist. Despite the acknowledged existence of isolated (very, very isolated) altruistic or wise political acts.

  11. john  •  Jul 8, 2009 @12:06 pm

    Before you read this, know that it is a JOKE, and it is Funny…..
    The
    Pope took a couple of days off to visit the rugged mountains of Alaska for some
    sightseeing. He was cruising along the campground in the Pope Mobile when there
    was a frantic commotion just at the edge of the woods.

    A
    helpless Democrat, wearing sandals, shorts, a 'Save the Whales' hat and a 'To
    Hell with Bush T-shirt,' was screaming while struggling frantically and
    thrashing around trying to free himself from the grasp of a 10-foot grizzly.

    As
    the Pope watched in horror, a group of Republican loggers came racing up. One
    quickly fired a 44 magnum into the bear's chest. The other two reached up and
    pulled the bleeding, semiconscious Democrat from the bear's grasp. Then using
    long clubs, the three loggers finished off the bear and two of them threw it
    onto the bed of their truck while the other tenderly placed the injured Democrat
    in the back seat.

    As
    they prepared to leave, the Pope summoned them to come over. 'I give you my
    blessing for your brave actions!' he told them. 'I heard there was a bitter
    hatred between Republican loggers and Democratic environmental activists but now
    I've seen with my own eyes that this is not true.'

    As
    the Pope drove off, one logger asked his buddies 'Who was that guy?'

    'It
    was the Pope,' another replied. 'He's in direct contact with heaven and has
    access to all wisdom.'

    'Well,'
    the logger said, 'he may have access to all wisdom but he doesn't know squat
    about bear hunting! By the way, is the bait still alive, or do we need to go
    back to Massachusetts and get another one?'

  12. Chris  •  Jul 8, 2009 @12:17 pm

    If you want to start talking about fixing California's problems with structural changes to the state government, term limits aren't where I'd begin. Supermajority requirements to pass a budget and easy referendum that dedicate funds and restrict revenue seem like far bigger problems than having experienced legislators.

  13. BikerPuppy  •  Jul 8, 2009 @12:30 pm

    Chris, I gotta totally disagree with you. The supermajority is all that protects CA taxpayers from financial oblivion. Bass and her cronies just passed the largest tax increase in US history in February, and now want to extract even MORE taxes out of us (a mere 5 months later) to avoid cutting any of the money flowing to their pet projects. Not only that, they are fighting like crazy to avoid even cutting any of the scheduled increases to their pet projects (although when the scheduled increase is decreased, Bass calls it a "cut" as if real money was taken away).

    When someone has a spending problem – a shopaholic – the last thing you should do is give them yet another credit card. Removing the 2/3 majority requirement for raising taxes would give Bass the ability to take every dollar you earn and give it to her favorite projects. Stop spending when you're out of money!!

  14. BikerPuppy  •  Jul 8, 2009 @12:32 pm

    By the way, despite Bass's refusal to call a spade a spade, "revenue" means "taxes."

  15. Patrick  •  Jul 8, 2009 @12:58 pm

    The only thing that protects California taxpayers from oblivion, BikerPuppy, is themselves. While there are many things I find ridiculous about California law, all of them could be solved by voting the rascals out, something the state's voters seem unwilling to do except in the case of the weird Gray Davis recall.

    California has the government that it wants. Not coincidentally, it has the government it deserves.

  16. BikerPuppy  •  Jul 8, 2009 @1:08 pm

    Patrick, you're right, Californians vote like idiots and the vast majority only have themselves to blame.

    Have you ever asked people how they vote for state reps? It's an interesting experiment. A large percentage of them vote for the incumbent because it's a name they recognize. That's their criteria. Or because that incumbent got a local project funded. Another large percentage vote for the candidate from the party they belong to. They forget that if they moved to CA from another part of the country, Democrat doesn't mean the same thing here. Here, it means outright take-from-the-masses-to-disperse-as-we-see-fit Socialism.

    Also, if you look at poll data, people give extremely low ratings to the CA legislature as a whole, but like their guy. They don't realize they are perpetuating the problem.

    I honestly believe you should have to prove you know what's going on in the State before you are allowed to cast a vote. I don't care which way you vote, as long as it is an INFORMED vote.