This press release was issued by the Party for Socialism and Liberation in response to the California state budget. For a related statement from the Peace and Freedom Party State Central Committee, see here.
October 8, 2010
The Carlos Alvarez campaign for Governor denounces the new state budget reached today by politicians in Sacramento. The campaign unequivocally demands that Sacramento fully fund human needs and revoke all tax breaks for the rich and corporations. The Alvarez campaign rejects any cuts to public services, including the $7.5 billion reduction in social spending.
"We need a budget that provides for human needs," said Carlos Alvarez. "Working class people deserve housing, health care, free education through college, a pension and a job. These things are not commodities —- they are fundamental rights. It is criminal that in California, the eighth largest economy in the world, working families are bearing the burden of an economic crisis caused by elite capitalist owners.
"The state's priorities of the must change," stated Alvarez. "The billions that fund prisons and police need to be redirected toward educating youth, and providing shelter and health care to the poor. Building prisons and incarcerating people is a profitable method of warehousing vast quantities of workers that the profit-based system is incapable of supporting, so they will slash 1 billion in prisoners’ medical care costs before even thinking about assisting prisoners’ re-entry to society."
He continued, "The pro-capitalist politicians in Sacramento have launched an all-out war on public employee unions by shoving wage and pension cuts down their throats. State workers make the state run—not politicians—and they deserve every penny they make, including their pensions. If elected governor, I will defend state workers every step of the way. Unlike the big business politicians, Brown and Whitman—both of whom want to increase the retirement age for state employees—my campaign demands that it remain as it is today."
Alvarez concluded, "Corporate tax breaks need to be repealed, and tax rates for the richest Californians should be returned to what they were decades ago. This alone would generate billions for the state. But politicians—both Democrat and Republican—have clearly chosen a side. They have concluded that massive cuts to social services for the poor are perfectly fine; meanwhile, they handed out a $30 million tax break for one of the richest families in California. I will change this by fighting to put power in the hands of workers who produce the wealth of our state and take it out of the hands of capitalist exploiters."
The Alvarez campaign stands firmly against the current budget "solutions" of massive wage, service and pension cuts, layoffs, temporal federal handouts and guesswork. California can have a budget surplus if we tax Big Oil, rich corporations and banks—this is exactly what Alvarez will do if elected governor.
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Carlos Alvarez is the Peace and Freedom candidate for Governor of California. He is also a member of the Party for Socialism and Liberation.