Author Archive: K. Lloyd Billingsley

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

Class-Action Lawsuit Targets Taxpayers

Wednesday September 30th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 11:58am PDT   •   0 Comments

In California Dreaming: Lessons on How to Resolve America’s Public Pension Crisis, Lawrence McQuillan discovered that California accounts for $550 billion to $750 billion of the $4.7 trillion in unfunded pension liabilities nationwide. The biggest player is the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) which in 1999 assured legislators that its investment earnings would...
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Pentagon Blimps a $2.7 Billion Bust

Monday September 28th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 10:24am PDT   •   0 Comments

The Pentagon deploys the Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System (JLENS) to guard the nation from cruise missiles and other low-flying threats. JLENS primary contractor, Raytheon, says the system is proven capable and performing well right now, but as David Willman notes in the Los Angeles Times, taxpayers might have...
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Tuesday September 22nd, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 10:20am PDT   •   0 Comments

California is the least tax-friendly state according to new rankings from Kiplinger. Much of that unfriendliness is due to the 2012 Proposition 30, which imposed the highest income tax rate in America, 13.3 percent, and also raised the sales tax to 7.5 percent, also highest in the nation. Proposition 30 was pitched as a...
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California Capitol Not Taxpayers’ House

Friday September 18th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 4:27am PDT   •   0 Comments

As we noted in 2013, California’s government employee unions are so confident of their power that they demonstrate in front of the capitol chanting “This is our house!” They were right then and are still right now, as a Sacramento Bee editorial explains. Senate Bill 376 by Ricardo Lara is “a sop to the...
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Tuesday September 15th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 5:42am PDT   •   0 Comments

As Lawrence McQuillan has observed, unfunded pension liabilities have soared to $4.7 trillion nationwide, and California accounts for $550 billion to $750 billion of the total. CalPERS, the Golden State’s biggest public pension fund, has authorized 99 types of special payments that count in pension calculations, but the only one that drew any objection...
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Government Monopoly Game Punishes the Poor

Tuesday September 8th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 11:49am PDT   •   0 Comments

In 2012, California assemblywoman Fiona Ma backed AB 2482, a bill to license, yes, interior designers. Backers of the measure claimed it would protect consumers from unqualified home decorators, but as Dan Walters of the Sacramento Bee notes, “it was quite evidently aimed at limiting who could offer design services to potential clients –...
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New Bomber Soars $27 Billion Too High

Tuesday September 1st, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:46am PDT   •   0 Comments

As we noted in 2013, politicians seemed intent on buying 280 more M-1 Abrams tanks the U.S. military didn’t want or need. The M-1 Abrams is a formidable machine but not really suited for counterinsurgency operations, and the tanks run $8 million each. Last year we alerted taxpayers to the new fleet of presidential...
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Audit Tees Off on Statewide Waste

Friday August 28th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:21am PDT   •   0 Comments

As we recently noted, the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) pays 3,500 full-time employees to sit around at their desks, as one legislator put it. According to Investigations of Improper Activities by State Agencies and Employees, a new report by state auditor Elaine Howle, they were doing much more than that. One Caltrans engineer,...
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Government Tunnel Vision Versus Drought Solutions

Tuesday August 25th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 5:44am PDT   •   0 Comments

California borders the Pacific Ocean, the largest body of water in the world, so desalination is a no-brainer for the Golden State. But as Dan Walters of the Sacramento Bee shows, government is not exactly eager to slake the parched state’s thirst. The San Diego County Water Authority is building a desalination plant near...
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Obamacare Excise Tax Inflicts Increasing Misery

Thursday August 20th, 2015   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 4:57am PDT   •   0 Comments

As we have noted, Emily Bazar of the California Health Care Foundation’s Center for Health Reporting has been working three shifts documenting the abuses of Covered California, a wholly owned subsidiary of Obamacare. These abuses include a dysfunctional computer system that cost nearly $500 million, cancellation of health insurance without notice when people report...
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