Jackie Cochran admitted in her April 22 letter to the editor ("Voters should have the right to vote if they want a tax hike") that she was not at state Sen. Doug LaMalfa's town hall meeting. I have to wonder if Glen Brunner, author of the Tuesday Coastal Voices piece, "Thwarting our right to vote," was. He didn't say so, and he seemed to be unaware of what the senator said.

The people of California have voted many times not to be taxed, but too many in Sacramento think it's the easy answer. Look around you. People in this county, like many more in the state, cannot afford to keep up the tax-and-spend mentality of the Democrats. They cannot afford the high cost of gasoline, with a high state tax, plus one of the highest auto registration fees, the high cost of commodities, thanks to gasoline, etc. If they can find a job in this county, they cannot afford the gas to get to work! It is truly a vicious circle.

The special election that Gov. Jerry Brown requested would have cost

the taxpayers (us) over $90 million! When he ran for his third term,

Jerry Brown said he would cut spending, he would do something about

runaway entitlements, and improve the business atmosphere in California.

Now that he has been elected he seems to have forgotten those things in

favor of his special interest friends.

The governor and the Legislature threaten to cut funding to schools

and social programs. Why? Because that always gets our attention. Being

good parents and caring citizens, we naturally want to protect our kids

and those less fortunate.

To be honest, we also want to protect what's "ours." Our fat

paycheck, our retirement. What the governor does not want is to draw

attention to all the waste in California. Did you read Roger Gitlin's

April 23 Coastal Voices piece ("Over-government everywhere") about the

more than 570 departments in the state? All with a hierarchy, all with

offices and staffs. Many duplicating each other's services.

How about all the commissions? We don't need all that bureaucracy,

and like Sen. LaMalfa said, "the California Coastal Commission was once a

good idea." Unfortunately, like everything else in government it has

grown into a self-perpetuating monster. Its sole purpose was to ensure

public access to the beaches. Now it interferes in every aspect of

coastal living from commercial fishing to remodeling your home! Each

commission has numerous "commissioners," each drawing a fat paycheck,

and each with support personnel.

No, Senator LaMalfa did not suggest that we wait around for the

economy to turn around. He said what many in Sacramento and Washington

have been saying for months - for at least the last 18 months -

tax-and-spend does not work! Capitalism does work, but only if big

government gets out of the way.

We must cut spending, curb our overly generous promises to big labor,

and do everything in our power to bring business and jobs back to

California. Assemblyman Wesley Chesbro said in an interview a few weeks

ago that if we didn't vote to keep the taxes, we would have to cut

spending. Like it was a bad thing. It is not a bad thing. To live within

your means is a good thing, and the only thing that will save

California from bankruptcy.

A note to anyone with lucrative labor contracts: You don't want

bankruptcy, because then the state can legally get out of those


Yes, by all means, write your representatives in Sacramento.

Encourage them to tighten their belts and get off the backs of the

people. Save our state!

Virginia Walworth is a Crescent City resident.