Author Archive: K. Lloyd Billingsley

K. Lloyd Billingsley is Communications Counsel at the Independent Institute.
Full biography and recent publications

Government Raisin Ransacking


Friday April 24th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 8:50am PDT   •   0 Comments

“Central planning was thought to work very well in 1937,” observes U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, “and Russia tried it for a long time.” So did the United States, through schemes such as Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937. Authorized by Congress during the New Deal the Act set up cooperative boards and...
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State Employee Scam Burns Taxpayers


Monday April 13th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 8:53am PDT   •   0 Comments

In California, prodigious waste of taxpayer dollars is inherent in the system but politicians look the other way and few in the old-line establishment media are watching. One notable exception is Jon Ortiz of the Sacramento Bee, co-author with Jim Miller of “The Public Eye” watchdog report headlined “Audit: California departments break law, game...
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Bullet Train Cap and Raid


Monday March 30th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:41am PDT   •   1 Comment

Politicians promoted the California high-speed rail project as a rapid route between Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area. But as we noted, the “bullet train” broke ground near Fresno. Now Dan Walters of the Sacramento Bee finds a gap between other bullet-train claims and reality. The California High-Speed Rail Authority claims that...
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More Government IT Waste


Wednesday March 25th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 5:36am PDT   •   1 Comment

As we recently noted, California’s Department of Consumer Affairs was implementing a computer system pegged at $27 million. Problems with the system boosted the cost to $77 million, but that still didn’t get it done. Consumer Affairs bosses want another $17.5 million, bring the cost to $96 million, more than three times the original...
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Government Greed Gone Wild


Monday March 23rd, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 5:42am PDT   •   1 Comment

California’s Franchise Tax Board (FTB) says inventor Gilbert Hyatt owes $55 million in taxes. Hyatt says he’s the target of a vendetta, and as Dale Kasler shows in the Sacramento Bee, Hyatt has a strong case. In 1990 Hyatt was awarded the patent for the first single-chip microprocessor and earned $350 million in royalties....
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Bay Bridge Crack-up Continues


Wednesday March 18th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 5:19am PDT   •   1 Comment

As we have noted several times, the new eastern span of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge was $5 billion over budget and ten years late. Despite all that time and money, safety issues with the bridge seem to be getting worse, as Jaxon Van Derbeken of the San Francisco Chronicle explains. For example, the...
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Consuming More Taxpayer Dollars


Monday March 16th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 5:03am PDT   •   2 Comments

As consumers know, modern computers are incredibly reliable machines that work right out of the box, simplify many tasks, and save consumers money. In the hands of government employees, however, computers often fail to work, make life more complicated, and cost taxpayers much more money than advertised. As Jon Ortiz notes in the Sacramento...
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Proposition 63 Pays Off At Last


Friday March 6th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 6:22am PDT   •   2 Comments

As we recently noted, California’s Little Hoover Commission, a state watchdog, reported that the state cannot even document whether or not the $13.2 billion raised by Proposition 63 improved Californians’ lives. That is of interest because the 2004 measure, sponsored by Sen. Darrell Steinberg, was supposed to keep people off the street, out of...
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GovInternetAbuse.Con


Monday March 2nd, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:40am PDT   •   1 Comment

When government says it’s going to be “neutral” about something, taxpayers can’t go wrong thinking that precisely the opposite is the case. Consider, for example, the latest government power grab, disguised as “Internet Neutrality.” If government were indeed neutral it would leave the Internet alone. But under Federal Communications Commission chairman Tom Wheeler, government...
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Wasted Energy


Monday February 23rd, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 5:03am PDT   •   1 Comment

The U.S. Department of Energy claims lineage from the Manhattan Project of World War II, and its official history cites none other than Albert Einstein. Actually, the DOE dates its inception from 1977: “[T]he twelfth cabinet-level department brought together for the first time within one agency two programmatic traditions that had long coexisted within...
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