Pharma ducks Obamacare debate and fights transparency. And yet it wants our trust: Drug companies fight drug price transparency, take no stand on the repeal of Obamacare, and claim they have patients’ interests at heart.
If Sacramento must have a marijuana industry, let’s at least make it fair: Joe Devlin, the city’s chief of cannabis policy and enforcement, has a plan to do both, and Mayor Darrell Steinberg and City Council members would be wise to listen.
San Luis Obispo Tribune: At a minimum, citizens of San Luis Obispo County have every right to expect cannabis to pay its own way. In fact, they should demand it.
Markos Kounalakis, McClatchy D.C.: Trump’s friend Putin urges Americans to question more. The hypocrisy is rich.
Dan Walters, CalMatters: Having checked gas taxes and cap and trade off their 2017 agenda, California political leaders will turn to the state’s housing crisis after a monthlong midsummer vacation. It’s high time.
Crystal Strait: A Beacon: Sacramento show this week in downtown Sacramento explores reproduction, and Planned Parenthood will embrace it. Why? Because art is powerful, and because, more than ever, we must fight in solidarity to ensure that access to medical treatment is understood as a civil right backed by a sustainable system.
Take a number: $805 million
If the Trump administration follows through on nixing the “fiduciary” rule, investors could lose big time. The delay in implementing the rule – which says that financial advisers must act in the best interest of their clients and is part of Wall Street reforms proposed by the Obama team – has already cost retirement savers $7.6 billion over 30 years, says the Economic Policy Institute. Another one-year delay would increase that hit by another $7.3 billion, including $805 million for investors in California. That’s nearly double the loss in any other state; Texas is second at $432 million. The rescinding of the “fiduciary rule” is only one of the ways that President Donald Trump is trying to rip up Obama’s legacy and to boost Wall Street instead of Main Street. – Foon Rhee, @foonrhee
Las Vegas Sun: If Donald Trump could quit throwing tantrums long enough, he might realize that Sen. Dean Heller and the other holdouts have given him the opportunity to get the political win he’s so desperately craving. That would involve working with Democrats to fix Obamacare, a triumph for which he could take credit.
Philadephia Inquirer: Outside Washington, Americans can only hope Democrats and Republicans will one day put the needs of the public above partisanship and fix Obamacare.
Orange County Register: There is an initiative heading for the ballot that “Eliminates recently enacted road repair and transportation funding by repealing revenues dedicated for those purposes.” Who could be for that? Well, what if we told you that was the title of an initiative put forward by Assemblyman Travis Allen to repeal the recently enacted gas tax increases? That title and a similarly slanted summary were crafted by the state Attorney General’s Office.
Santa Rosa Press Democrat: California can’t afford to continue shortchanging its roads.
Denver Post: What could a similar tax — call it a $15 statewide tax on adult bicycles at the point of sale, like the one Oregon just implemented — do for bicycle infrastructure? Quite a bit, and it would be infrastructure that crosses jurisdictions.
L.A. Times: City Hall has a clear mandate to legalize, regulate and tax pot. But it’s not doing that. Instead the regulations proposed last month would keep marijuana businesses illegal in L.A. – but then offer them “limited immunity” from criminal prosecution if they comply with city and state regulations.
San Diego Union-Tribune: State Auditor Elaine Howle should investigate harsh allegations lobbed against Metropolitan Water District of Southern California by its largest member agency, the San Diego County Water Authority.
The Mercury News: Unless the tech industry rallies internet users across the nation to rise up in force, the online world as we know it will be no more by as early as mid-August.
So long, Spicey
San Francisco Chronicle: White House press secretary Sean Spicer waited six months too long to resign. If he wanted to preserve the credibility and respect he built during his communications career, he would have walked out the door on Day Two of the administration.
The New York Times: Oh, Sean Spicer, our four-Pinocchio press secretary, is this the end? We know we are not supposed to “just yell out questions,” but rather “raise our hands like big boys and girls,” but is it really, truly over?
Dana Milbank: Sean Spicer is the latest Donald Trump casualty. He won’t be the last. In business, Trump tended to destroy those around him, walking away from failure relatively unscathed while others – lenders, partners, vendors – paid the cost. Something similar is happening to those around Trump now, but this isn’t a casino – it’s our country.
Jonathan Bernstein: Sean Spicer wasn’t the problem at the White House. Reports are that Anthony Scaramucci got his job by impressing the president with his hard-hitting defense of the administration on cable TV shows. While appearing on television certainly is part of the job of a White House communications director, the real job is to map out and execute an overall communications strategy.
Ross Douthat: Why Charlie Gard’s parents should have the right to try one more time.
David Brooks: Back when the Republican Party functioned as a governing party, it used government in positive ways to widen people’s options. It aimed at many of the same goals as Democrats – broader health coverage, lower poverty rates – but relied on less top-down mechanisms to get there.
Maureen Dowd: Donald Trump has struck gold – or Goldman Sachs – with his appointment of Wall Street hedge fund guy and cable TV diva Anthony Scaramucci as White House communications director.
Frank Bruni: Jared Kushner leaves fingerprints and throws his weight around, then floats above it all. No wonder the president’s lawyers are fed up with him.
Nicholas Kristof: Jared Kushner should not be working in the White House, and he should not have a security clearance.
E.J. Dionne Jr.: Donald Trump appointed a presidential commission solely to justify an offhand lie about illegal votes. And now that this body exists, it will almost certainly try to find ways to rationalize purging legitimate voters from the rolls and erecting yet more barriers to voting.
Timothy Egan: For a time, the Kootenai National Forest fell into the wrong hands. The barbarians nearly destroyed a land that was meant to remain a place of wonder for our children’s children’s children.
Paul Krugman: The reason the assault on Obamacare failed wasn’t that Donald Trump did a poor selling job or that Mitch McConnell mishandled the legislative strategy. Obamacare survived because it brought about a dramatic reduction in the number of Americans without health insurance, and voters didn’t and don’t want to lose those gains.
Ruben Navarrette: The original DREAM Act was the epitome of elitism before that was even a political talking point. The new bill has a requirement that recipients speak English and know U.S. history. Great idea. But shouldn’t we start by demanding those things from native-born U.S. citizens?
Kathleen Parker: Alan Shearer has managed to ignore the wailing, weeping and lamentations of his devoted cadre of columnists and cartoonists.
Leonard Pitts Jr.: The hypocrisy is staggering. Scientific consensus isn’t enough to convince the president and his party to get serious about climate change. Meantime, a few dubious anecdotes of voting irregularities get us a presidential commission investigating a “problem” that does not exist.
“ ... he was a minority and I was afraid to call 911 for fear the police would kill or injure him. What a sad situation we’ve come to.” John Wagner, Sacramento
Taylor Batten, Charlotte Observer: Mr. Trump, meet Justices Brennan, Brandeis: Tireless questioning of government officials, from Trump on down, should not pit Democrats versus Republicans; it should pit those who want authoritarian rule against the rest of us.