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Just a quick California note. On Tuesday, following our habit of the past few decades, we approved Proposition 22, which limits the ways the legislature can allocate property tax funds, and Proposition 26, which essentially eliminates the legislature’s ability to levy new fees on businesses. Today, we will undoubtedly return to our usual hobby of yelling and screaming that the legislature isn’t doing enough to balance the budget and make government work. For the past 30 years, in election after election, we have relentlessly reduced Sacramento’s ability to raise money at the same time that we’ve piled on an endless series of new spending requirements — and as the cherry on top, insisted that this citizen-created circle be squared by a bunch of term-limited amateurs who have no idea how the machinery of the state really works. And then we wonder why things aren’t going so well.

We are insane.

(And in case you’re wondering, this is why I don’t really care much that Proposition 19 failed. Legalized pot might be nice, but we’ve got way bigger things to worry about here.)

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We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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