California, Here They Come

The Daily Californian reports on a large, economy-fueled protest happening today out West:

Hundreds of members of the UC community are expected to rally today throughout the 10-campus system in efforts aimed at publicizing the impact of state and university budget cuts on faculty, staff and students.

The walkout and union strike have been organized in response to budget decisions by the university administration. However, organizers said they are also seeking a response from the California legislature concerning the state of the university.

While the protesters blame administrators, administrators blame California. “The state is not a reliable partner,” said UC President Mark Yudof at a recent UC Board of Regents meeting. As usual, Prop 13—a.k.a. “one of the worst, most disastrous-in-the-long-term ballot initiatives ever conceived of”—is part of the reason things are so screwed up at the moment:

[L]awmakers said the economic recession has taken a heavy toll on state revenues. Other issues, such as the two-thirds majority vote needed to pass a state budget and raise taxes, coupled with a long-term decrease in state revenues, have impeded the ability of the state to adequately fund higher education.

Inside Higher Ed has more on what the protesters have planned.

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Jesse Singal

Jesse Singal is a former opinion writer for The Boston Globe and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. He is currently a master's student at Princeton's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Policy. Follow him on Twitter at @jessesingal.