“What’s Next After $15?” a forum recently held by the American Civil Liberties Union’s Pasadena chapter, brought together community organizers and antipoverty activists to discuss the challenges now faced by the City of Roses to implement its new living wage law.
Obama-ology, written by Aurin Squire, takes place in 2008 and revolves around a youthful volunteer for the Obama campaign and the life education he receives from his senior colleagues and the folks in the community where he’s working.
Bill Raden reports how Big Oil is trying to scuttle California’s program to reduce greenhouse gases.
Last month millions of undocumented immigrants were left in legal limbo when a divided U.S. Supreme Court let stand a lower court ruling that had blocked President Barack Obama’s executive action on immigration.
The next step in deciding whether California will join other state efforts to demystify the drug pricing practices of pharmaceutical manufacturers will be taken tomorrow as the Assembly’s Health Committee votes on a drug pricing transparency bill introduced in February by State Senator Dr. Ed Hernandez.
For the state’s first hundred-plus years, certain unspoken rules governed California politics. In a state where agriculture produced more wealth than any industry, the first rule was that growers held enormous power.
One of the unfortunate byproducts of the matchup between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump is that the presidential race has already become a contest of personalities rather than one of ideas.
The last time California enacted comprehensive tax reform, FDR was president, Babe Ruth was still playing baseball and the Golden State was five years away from seeing its first freeway open.
Most of us ignore the electoral process except when we’re voting. We stand in line and punch the card, carefully sweeping off the chads before we put it in the box. And leave the polls believing in the validity of our vote.
As next week’s June 15 budget deadline looms, legislative leaders hammering out differences between the Assembly and Senate versions of this year’s $171 billion budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1 will also be deciding the fate of retirement security for future University of California workers.
On April 25 state Sen. Holly Mitchell (D-Los Angeles) presented her case in Sacramento for the Repeal Ineffective Sentencing Enhancement (RISE) Act, a bill to roll back a 1985 law extending jail terms for certain repeat drug offenders.
If you’re a woman and running for political office has ever crossed your mind, historian Nancy L. Cohen’s new book, Breakthrough: The Making of Americas First Woman President, is a must-read.
California is often perceived politically as a sea of solid “blue” – a state, with its Democratic governor and Democratic-controlled legislature, that has become synonymous with progress.
Barring an unexpected reversal of fortune, California is on track to become the first state to officially raise its minimum wage to $15 an hour. News first emerged on March 26 of an agreement with Governor Jerry Brown and leading Democratic legislators to raise the wage from its current $10 hourly mark to $10.50 beginning January […]
While the media distract us with the shinier attractions of the presidential-candidate road shows, the dirty work of politics continues in the shadows. I do not mean to diminish the importance of who gets elected or even nominated, but the secret and behind-the-scenes work often makes for decisions that change public policy in favor of […]
In books, blogs and newspaper pages, Los Angeles journalist and social critic Erin Aubry Kaplan has offered astute and unforgiving opinions about America’s race and class divides. (In 2005 she became the Los Angeles Times‘ first weekly black op-ed columnist.) In Black Talk, Blue Thoughts, and Walking the Color Line, the KCET website contributor gave this […]
Self-employed independent contractors in the Golden State can neither form unions nor negotiate collective bargaining pacts, but part of those conditions could soon change, according to Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego). Gonzalez, Chair of the Assembly Select Committee on Women in the Workplace, introduced Assembly Bill 1727 on January 28 as an amendment to the […]
I turned off onto a long dirt road about 15 miles outside of Montevideo, Uruguay and drove towards a wooden guard shack that stood across from a small farmhouse hidden by a long row of trees. Usually, if you want to meet a country’s president – or even ex-president – you have to fight through […]
Last week, the country’s two largest private prison operators, Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) and GEO Group, released their annual financial reports. The numbers were what we’ve come to expect — staggering. Combined, the two publicly traded companies collected $361 million in profits last year. That’s profit — taxpayer money that could be going to […]
With the lead poisoning tragedy in Flint, Michigan still playing out in the national headlines, we’ve been due for good news about our nation’s water—and Wisconsin just delivered it. Yesterday, state leaders scrapped a bill that would have made it easier for private corporations to buy municipal water and sewer utilities across the state. The bill, introduced at […]
By now, many are familiar with the tragic details of the water crisis in Flint, Michigan. But a key chapter in the story is being overlooked. In February 2015, almost a full year before the news of widespread lead poisoning gained headlines, the world’s largest private water corporation, Veolia, deemed Flint’s water safe. It was hired by […]
Flint was a failure of government — but it didn’t have to be so. And government wasn’t the root of the problem. It was about the people, and ideas they advocate, who have taken control of governments across the country. Water is a public good provided by public institutions — i.e. governments. It should be […]
Robert Reich stepped down from his post as Labor Secretary in 1996 to spend more time with his teenage sons, Adam, now a sociology professor at Columbia University, and Sam, a writer and director who heads the video department at the popular comedy site CollegeHumor.com. (Reich and Clare Dalton divorced in 2012; he […]
It’s two weeks before Thanksgiving, and a crowd of 500 people has filled the Silicon Valley Commonwealth Club to hear former U.S. Labor Secretary Robert Reich discuss a decidedly less than festive topic: How the economy is leaving most Americans behind. The subject, which inspired Reich’s latest book, Saving Capitalism, hits particularly close to […]
Fred Hiatt, the Washington Post’s editorial page editor, has fired columnist Harold Meyerson, one of the nation’s finest journalists and perhaps the only self-proclaimed socialist to write a weekly column for a major American newspaper during the past decade or two. At a time when America is experiencing an upsurge of progressive organizing and activism — from […]
Chuck Reed today declined to address the findings of a Capital & Main poll that showed weak support for two Reed-created ballot initiatives aimed at reducing pension benefits for California’s public employees. If either measure receives the necessary number of petition signatures to be placed on the 2016 ballot, it will face fierce opposition from […]
There’s a chance that lawmakers in your city or state have recently floated something called “Pay for Success” as an innovative way to fund public services. Also known as Social Impact Bonds, Pay for Success programs bring the high-risk attitude of venture capital to critical, yet underfunded public services. This week we, along with our […]
As Governor Jerry Brown touted California’s environmental initiatives and prodded world leaders in Paris to embrace tougher environmental policies during the United Nations summit on climate change, it was instructive to look back at how one of Brown’s top environmental priorities suffered a major defeat in the California Legislature this year. That priority was to […]
The story of Mary and Joseph leaving their small town for Bethlehem has spawned dramatizations, poems, carols and a lot more since it was first told in the late First Century CE. The Latin American enactment, called Las Posadas, runs for nine nights, from December 16 through Christmas Eve. Each night families make a procession […]
San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo has confirmed to Capital & Main that his city is nearing a settlement with its nine non-safety unions over a contentious pension-cutting law that resulted in an exodus of public employees, followed by costly legal actions. Measure B, passed in 2012, sought to reduce pensions for new hires, eliminate extra “bonus” checks […]