FROM Michael Semler
Privatize the California Lottery? California state spending rises faster than revenue, and nobody wants new taxes. Programs for the most needy people get cut first. Governor Schwarzenegger says privatizing the state lottery could raise up to 37 billion dollars. That could be enough to pay down 8 billion dollars in debt, start new public works projects and pay for universal health care. The LA Times says Democrats are skeptical, but that the promise of all that money puts them in a bind.
CA Presidential Primary Officially Moved to February 5 Governor Schwarzenegger has signed a new law moving California's presidential primaries up to February the 5 of next year. The early primaries are supposed to give the biggest state in the union more political clout than it's had for decades. Michael Semler is Professor of Political Science at California State University, Sacramento.
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?
Is the threat from Russia missing from the Russia meddling probe? There's much being made about the Trump administration's possible ties with Russia. But the bottom line is Russia's effort to influence American democracy. Do the President and his aides care enough to take action before voters go back to the polls?
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?