Fox and Hounds Daily Says Goodbye

With this article, we end publication of Fox and Hounds Daily. It has been a satisfying 12½ year run. When we opened in May 2008, our site was designed to offer an opportunity to those who wished to engage in public debate on many issues, especially in politics and business, but found it difficult to get placed in newspaper op-ed pages. 

Co-publishers Tom Ross, Bryan Merica and I have kept F&H going over this time investing our own time, funding, and staff help. Last year at this time we considered closing the site, however with an election on the horizon we decided to keep F&H going through the election year. With the election come and gone, and with no sense of additional resources, we have decided to close the site down. 

Fox and Hounds will live on, at least, with my articles collected in the California State Library.

On a personal note, I have spent over 40 years in California policy and politics. There have been some incredible high moments and some difficult low points. It pains me that politics too often is a blood sport, frequently demonizing the motives of opponents and using the legal system as a weapon in public discourse. At Fox & Hounds, we tried to adhere to the practice of giving all a voice in the debate, yet keep the commentaries civil and avoided personal attacks.

F&H offered the opportunity to publish different perspectives (even ones that criticized my writings!).  We had success as indicated by the Washington Post twice citing Fox and Hounds Daily one of the best California political websites and many other positive affirmations and comments received over the years.

Tom, Bryan and I want to thank our many readers and writers for being part of our journey.  The publishers of Fox and Hounds Daily believe that we added value to California and its people. We hope you agree.

Fracking survives CA Legislature — for now

After sitting through several recent marathon sessions in the Assembly, it was shocking to witness the powerful California environmental lobby lose its attempt to ban oil and gas hydraulic fracturing

For this, Californians can be thankful.

That got me thinking. What if California’s powerful environmental lobby had been as powerful during the 1849 Gold Rush as it is today? Back then, they would have harassed gold pioneer James Marshall so much he would have quit. California never would have become the Golden State.

Hydrolic fracking for oil and gas has the potential to become the next Gold Rush — this time of black gold, Texas tea. But will the environmentalists stop it? Not yet — but maybe in the future. (more…)

George Wallace Schwarzenegger?

There is the rewriting of history, there are lies, and then there is what Sen. Mark Leno tried to pull off last week – trying to blame someone for doing the opposite of what he actually did.

Leno’s subject was same-sex marriage, and Leno’s target was Arnold Schwarzenegger. The former governor is an easy target these days, given his unpopularity with the public, California media, leading state politicians, and even friends and family. But Leno, in blaming Schwarzenegger for the passage of Prop 8 and the state’s too-slow path to marriage equality, not only got history wrong, he got it backwards. Leno’s criticism does a disservice not only to Schwarzenegger but also to public understanding of what’s wrong with California’s system. (more…)

California Members of Congress Must Provide Leadership to Get Immigration Reform Done

Last week, California’s two United States Senators–Diane Feinstein and Barbara Boxer–joined with over two-thirds of the United States Senate to pass comprehensive immigration reform–legislation that is probably more important to California’s economy than that of any other state.

Now it is time for California’s congressional delegation to take the lead to ensure that California’s critical industries have the workers and talent they need to create necessary California jobs. Technology, agriculture, and tourism, among others, must have comprehensive immigration reform to thrive. (more…)

Adios, Antonio, Fare Thee Well

You got to love Antonio; he would have it no other way.

The bane of his life back when he was first running for mayor in 2005, even well after he got elected, was the LA Times and others incessantly calling him “the first Latino mayor of Los Angeles in modern times.”

He often brought the subject up with me because at the Daily News we refused to belittle him as if he were some kind of token of affirmative action, a racial-ethnic category to be checked off so everybody was put in their proper box, the cohort that chained them to their genetic and demographic code. (more…)

California’s Three Trick Pony

Fiscally, the State of California is on life-support.  The core functions are barely funded and nothing much is being done to address the tsunami of debt and deficits that have severely weakened our economy and our sense of well-being.  You would think in the midst of cities and counties declaring bankruptcy that our leaders in Sacramento would put their collective minds together and come up with a plan to ameliorate the dire situation we find ourselves in.  Well, in some ways, they have!

Sacramento is a three trick pony when it comes to paying the bills: raise taxes, borrow money, and steal money.  Unfortunately, most Californians are woefully ignorant of how often our state government has reached into their bag of tricks and just how much damage has been done as a result. (more…)

Brown Uses Veto for a Do-Over on UC Spending Plan

It’s good to be the king – or the governor – especially when it gives you a chance to get something right the second time.

Gov. Jerry Brown decided that consistency matters Thursday and used his line item veto to make his actions match his rhetoric.

Call it a “never mind” moment for the governor. (more…)