COVID taught us that money talks in California on masks and mandates

Newsom, Garcetti caught maskless at 49ers-Rams game despite stadium rules

‘Fox & Friends’ discusses Democratic leaders Gavin Newsom and Eric Garcetti being caught without their masks at the conference championship game.

In California, COVID mandate rules bend are bent for those with money and influence while the school children still remain masked indoors.  

For 22 months now, Gov. Gavin Newsom has claimed that there is a state of emergency in California because of COVID. According to the applicable law, an emergency is defined as the “existence of conditions of disaster or of extreme peril to the safety of persons and property within the state caused by conditions such as air pollution, fire, flood, storm, epidemic . . . causing a ‘state of war emergency,’ which, by reason of their magnitude, are or are likely to be beyond the control of the services, personnel, equipment, and facilities of any single county, city and county…”  

No one who watched the Super Bowl this month could logically conclude that a state of emergency still exists throughout California. Indeed, many questioned whether that legal definition of an “emergency” ever existed. The absence of masks at the game received nearly as much press as the outcome of the game.  

Photo of Gov. Gavin Newsom and Magic Johnson 

No one should be surprised, however, by the lack of masks or the lack of enforcement of the mask mandate even though Newsom maintains his “emergency powers” and he “mandated” masks pursuant to that power.  

So, why wasn’t that enforced for the Super Bowl? The reason is simple. Money.  

Obviously, the Super Bowl is a big money event.  It was expected to bring some $500 million to the Los Angeles region.  Branding it as a “super spreader” event or requiring masks for the over 62,000 people who attended was not going to be good for the bottom line. Money talked and mandates walked.  

You know who else has money? The California Prison Guards Union. They are big political donors to California Democrats. So, what was a very union friendly  governor to do? 

Newsom exempted California prison guards from his vaccine mandate.  That garnered this, October 2021, headline from the Mercury News: Newsom Bows To Prison Guards Union – Again: So much for the Governor’s insistence that California follow the science when it comes to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Once again, money talked and mandates walked.  

FILE – Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks at a news conference in Oakland, Calif., on Oct. 27, 2021. Gov. Newsom has changed plans and won’t be going to the upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Scotland. Newsom’s office cited "family obligations" as the reason.
((AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File))

Last but certainly not least – indeed, perhaps the most blatant example of power/money politics, are the mask mandates for schools. To say the least, it is a rather unpopular mandate in many parts of the state.

There is a lot of literature and science behind this headline and others like itChildren are not COVID-19 super spreaders and behind conclusions such as the following: “children most frequently acquire COVID-19 from adults, rather than transmitting it to them.” The latter headline appeared in an article in the American Academy of Pediatrics, Volume 146, in August of 2020.  

California children and parents, however, are no match for the California Teachers Association. That public employee union, which gets its revenue from taxpayer dollars, is arguably the most powerful union and political player in California.   

During the pandemic, they kept their lead and, according to the Mercury News, outspent “Big Oil” on lobbying Sacramento legislators and politicians.  That is nothing new.  With respect to political spending between 2000 and 2010:  

“The California Fair Political Practices Commission released a report titled “Big Money Talks” that revealed the California Teachers Association was the largest political spender in the state over the last decade, spending more than $200 million on ballot initiatives, candidates for state and local office, and lobbying. The $211.9 million spent by the CTA is nearly twice as much as the $107.5 million committed by the second-highest spender, the California State Council of Service Employees.”

The children and parents of California are no match for that kind of money and power.  That’s why public schools in California were among the last in the nation to have children return to in person school. Further, the school mask mandate in California remains in place for now despite Newsom lifting the mask mandate, effective February 16th , for most of California – with the noticeable exceptions of the unvaccinated and on public transportation.  

FILE – California Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks in San Francisco on Sept. 14, 2021. 
(AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File)

Of course, no one should be surprised about California, unions and lobbying.  “The 2022-23 Governor’s Budget proposes spending of $286.4 billion in total state funds”  – the largest government budget in the nation — by far.  Historically, the growth in budgets is accompanied by increased lobbying as special interests fight over government spoils.

In 2022, California’s state government spending will be the Super Bowl of big government spending. No one can mask that – nor can they mask the failures of rampant crime, poverty, job and business flight and the state’s 49th in the nation education results.  

In other words, California’s big government approach has failed its citizens. 

However, there may be a light at the end of the tunnel. The recent recall of three members of the ultra-woke San Francisco School Board shows that there is a limit to what a people will withstand – even in California. 

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