That’s a big — and a glib — commitment for the mayor to make to the 500 owners of manufactured homes who were wiped out when fire raged through the Oakridge Mobile Home Park in Sylmar.
Despite endless rounds of hikes in taxes, rates and fees, he’s mismanaged his basic responsibility to look after the public treasury. The city faces a soaring deficit even as revenues are falling.
Every dollar squeezed out of the public’s pockets means there’s even less money to spend on goods and services that create jobs and wealth. It’s a downward spiral to oblivion.
And the mismanagement is even worse at the state level wherre profligate spending is about to lead to higher taxes that will take more money out of the economy and reduce spending on education and law enforcement and social services and health care and just about everything else.
None of that incompetence can even compare to the bungling misfeasance in office of the federal government which is printing trillions of dollars to try to prevent the entire world from tumbling into a greater depression than the Great Depression.
When the elected representatives of the people all say the same thing — it’s a long and painful road ahead — you know we’re headed into troubled times. It would be comforting to hear them all say they screwed up terribly and are resigning in mass so more prudent people could step in and manage our affairs.
Don’t hold your breath. They are all lined up to protect themselves and their privileges and to go on making promises they can’t fulfill like building 500 new homes just like that for people who are huddled in shelters, having lost everything they own.
It’s not like we provided much help to the 41 families who lost their homes at Sky View Terrace mobile home park in the last brush fire. Less than half even got federal housing vouchers or much aid of any sort.
The problems we face are not just of the temporary sorts caused by catastrophes like the brush fires that are raging across Southern California.
We have ignored the warning signs for too long, building too many homes in the wrong places out of the wrong materials without regard to the certainty that fires and earthquakes and mudslides and floods are natural phenomena common to the area.
The time has come for accountability. We can’t go on electing people who fail us. We can’t go on approving taxes for half-baked schemes that achieve little but filling the bank accounts of special interests that provide millions of dollars to sell us a bill of goods — manipulations made easy because we prefer to be gullible and uninformed as if ignorance will make us blissful and safe.
Wake up all you little people out there. Let’s grow up and demand institutions and leaders that serve us, that solve our problems.
The era of hyper-consumerism is over. The era of endless growth is over, A fundamental economic restructuring is taking place that will force enormous economic, political and cultural changes.
We can’t afford to be passive bystanders when our futures, and the futures of children and our society, are at stake.