Flogging Prop 13

Loren Kaye
President of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education

Peter Schrag today praises Joel Fox with faint damnation. Schrag claims that the F&H editor was "partially right" in complaining "vociferously about people who he thought blamed too many of California’s problems on Proposition 13."

He further concedes that Howard Jarvis cannot be held responsible for earthquakes and wildfires. But that seems to be the extent of his absolution. Schrag identifies nearly every major post-1978 public policy affront as the progeny of Prop 13. Not just tax limitations but the adoption of term limits, anti-crime initiatives, and the stem cell boondoggle. It’s as if – if not for Proposition 13 – the California public (not to mention interest groups) would never have discovered this obscure constitutional power to legislate by popular initiative.

I suppose that makes Howard Jarvis – not a "fuming curmudgeon," in Schrag’s words – but the Hiram Johnson of his day. (On the other hand, it turns out Governor Johnson was quite the curmudgeon, as well.)

Comment on this article

Please note, statements and opinions expressed on the Fox&Hounds Blog are solely those of their respective authors and may not represent the views of Fox&Hounds Daily or its employees thereof. Fox&Hounds Daily is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the site's bloggers.