Author Archive: K. Lloyd Billingsley

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

Costing Out Governor’s Tunnel Vision


Wednesday August 24th, 2016   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 3:49pm PDT   •   0 Comments

As we noted, California’s vaunted high-speed rail project will require 35 miles of tunnels through the mountains north of Los Angeles. Governor Jerry Brown, a backer of the bullet train, also has tunnel vision for the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. Brown wants to dig 35 miles of tunnels to convey water to the State Water...
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Armed Enforcement: Bureaucracies Get Bigger and More Militant


Monday August 22nd, 2016   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:11am PDT   •   0 Comments

They came before dawn, a squad of six armed officers, banging on the door of Maria Elena Hernandez, 62, a Los Angeles grandmother. When she identified herself, one of the officers twisted her arms behind her back and slapped her in handcuffs. Hernandez protested that the officers had the wrong person, but they duly...
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Trickle-Down Debt, Failure


Monday August 15th, 2016   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:38am PDT   •   0 Comments

Politicians may bill it as “free”, but government monopoly in education is big business that racks up considerable public debt. As Dan Walters of the Sacramento Bee observes, in recent decades California has issued $45 billion in school bonds now being repaid at a cost of nearly $3 billion a year. With interest the...
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Bullet Train Railroads Property Rights, Taxpayers


Wednesday August 10th, 2016   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:35am PDT   •   0 Comments

As we noted, in Blazing Saddles the devious Hedley Lamarr (Harvey Korman) plots to build a railroad and has his eye on the land he needs. “Unfortunately,” he laments, “there is one thing standing between me and that property – the rightful owners.” As Ralph Vartebarian notes in the Los Angeles Times, California’s bullet...
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The Problem with Mo’ Bigger Government


Monday August 8th, 2016   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:31am PDT   •   0 Comments

The Sacramento Bee is disturbed that the Assembly has derailed SB 1190, which would ban lobbying of California Coastal Commission members. Lobbyists had set up meetings between commissioners and David “The Edge” Evans, a guitarist with U2, who sought to build a house in Malibu, and members of the Newport Banning Ranch Project in...
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The Truth About the Pension Crisis


Wednesday August 3rd, 2016   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 8:40am PDT   •   0 Comments

Rob Feckner, president of the CalPERS board of administration, has heard stories that all is not well with the massive pension fund, with assets of more than $301 billion. “Nothing could be further from the truth,” writes Feckner in the Sacramento Bee. “Let me tell you why.” Investment returns for fiscal year July 1,...
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Covered California Misery Mounts a Surge


Thursday July 21st, 2016   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 4:12am PDT   •   0 Comments

We have been tracking Covered California, the Golden State’s wholly-owned subsidiary of Obamacare. Emily Bazar of the Center for Health Reporting has exposed glitches in the system’s $454 million computer system, problems with cancelation of policies when people turn 65, and difficulties in enrollment for others. For Bazar, these and other problems resulted in...
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Conventional Wisdom on Education?


Wednesday July 20th, 2016   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 10:12am PDT   •   0 Comments

The Republican National Convention in Cleveland this week has showcased plenty of hoopla and boilerplate rhetoric – some of it apparently plagiarized – but provided little enlightenment on key themes such as education. On Tuesday, House Speaker Paul Ryan and New Jersey governor Chris Christie bypassed the subject completely. Not so Donald Trump Jr.,...
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Proposition 13 Liars Exposed


Tuesday July 19th, 2016   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 4:53am PDT   •   0 Comments

In 1978, when Jerry Brown was governor, soaring property taxes were literally driving people from their homes. Embattled Californians responded with the People’s Initiative to Limit Property Taxation. This measure capped property tax rates for residential and commercial properties at 1 percent of the assessed value and prevented assessed value from growing more than...
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Bullet Train’s “Blended” Boondoggle


Thursday July 14th, 2016   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 5:17am PDT   •   0 Comments

We have been keeping track, so to speak, of California’s high-speed rail project, the vaunted “bullet train.” In February, we noted that farmers are not eager to sell the land the project needs. The alleged cost of $68 billion was already more than double the $33 billion estimate before California voters approved $9.95 billion...
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