Unless you have some skin in the game - that is, unless you're poor, sick or going to school - there's a good chance you've been tuning out. But the deficit numbers have gotten so huge and the stakes are so compelling that perhaps more folks will be paying attention. Perhaps. The last polls I checked show a continuing disconnect between reality and presumed entitlement. Voters don't want to pay more taxes, but they also don't want to see cuts in education or other core services. I get into all that, along with L.A.'s budget problems, during this week's Business Update. Available at kpcc.org and podcast (Business Update with Mark Lacter).
By the way, the FT has just posted a piece by Matthew Garrahan on California's budget cutting. It begins thusly:
It has been a tough week for Deborah Miles, a 49-year-old mother of two from south Los Angeles. She suffers from arthrogryposis, a rare congenital disorder that has confined Ms Miles to a wheelchair and deprived her of the use of her hands, yet her disability has not held her back - she has earned two degrees and works as a mental health case manager. Ms Miles credits her achievements, partly, to the flexibility she has thanks to California's "in-home support services" programme. But she learnt this week that her IHSS allowance, which lets Ms Miles pay her daughter to provide the specific care she requires, is to be scrapped - one of many cuts proposed by Jerry Brown, California's governor, to close the state's projected $15.7bn deficit. "Without in-home support I would not be able to get up, get into bed, bathe or dress myself," Ms Miles said. "My in-home care means I can function."