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Here’s one definition of lunacy. In 2012, more than 4,200 bills were introduced in the California legislature. But there is a good side to this madness. It gives writers and satirists, like Greg Lucas, geysers of material.
Lucas spun some of his favorite political buzzwords the other day to a group of 60 hospital government relations worry-warts, including me, during a lunch break at a California Hospital Association forum at the Sacramento Hyatt.
Consider some of these meaningless/zesty-as-salt-free-peanut-butter words that are routinely sandwiched in the world of politics. “Reform ... Level playing field ... Trial balloon ... Win-win legislation ... Work in progress ... Stakeholders ... Broad-based, grass-roots coalition ... Ongoing negotiations ... Being at the table ... Real time ... Blow back ... In the loop.”
Even as Lucas was regaling the group, across the street under the Capitol dome another example of wisdom or witlessness was occurring.
San Francisco Assemblyman Tom Ammiano introduced AB 5, the “Homeless Person’s Bill of Rights and Fairness Act.” It would allow loitering, sleeping, congregating, panhandling and urinating in public, as well as sleeping in cars, providing safeguards for shopping carts and possessions and recycling materials gathered. That would be OK on sidewalks, plazas, parks, subway tunnels, bus stops, beaches and, presumably, outside any commercial business.
Needless to say, the bill is being pilloried in newspaper editorials. Consider some of the buzz terminology used in editorials published in McClatchy newspapers: “Silly distraction ... not a vehicle for a serious discussion.”
But the last bit of derelict language belongs to Ammiano, quoted in the editorial as saying his bill is “far from being fully formed.”
Certainly gives me boffo reassurance.