Posts by K. Lloyd Billingsley
K. Lloyd Billingsley is a Policy Fellow at the Independent Institute and a columnist at The Daily Caller.
Family Crime Drama Illuminates California Pension Crisis


Kyle Scarber, a former California Highway Patrol chief in the Fresno area, draws a state pension of $125,000, but he thinks it’s not enough. So recently he paid a visit to state public-pension agency CalPERS to augment his retirement payout. With California’s government-employee pensions set to rise by $676 million, California taxpayers might note...
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SF Official Arrested for Graft Should Have Been Axed Years Ago


Last month, when the FBI arrested San Francisco Department of Public Works boss Mohammed Nuru, many Bay Area residents breathed a sigh of relief. As Susan Dyer Reynolds noted in Marina Times, Nuru’s ascent started in 1991 when he became second in command at the San Francisco League of Urban Gardeners (SLUG), a nonprofit...
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Protestors Rail Against California’s New Restrictions on Freelancers and the Gig Economy


On January 28, hundreds of freelance writers and other independent contractors gathered at California’s state capitol to protest Assembly Bill 5, authored by San Diego Democrat Lorena Gonzalez. Her bill targeted the so-called “gig economy,” specifically the independent drivers for Uber and Lyft, but it also attacked freelance writers, who could have been the...
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How California Can Solve the Housing and Homeless Crisis


“Homelessness is a national crisis, one that’s spreading across the West Coast and cities across the country,” proclaims California Gov. Gavin Newsom. “The state of California is treating it as a real emergency.” Newsom wants to spend $750 million to help homeless people get off the streets. To that end, the governor has signed...
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The New McCarthyism Has No Sense of Decency


During CNN’s last presidential debate in Des Moines, Sen. Amy Klobuchar said Sen. Joseph McCarthy had “blacklisted people” and that Joseph Welch said to him, “Have you no sense of decency?” If anyone in 2020 found this reference puzzling, it would be hard to blame them.

Ruby Ridge Documentary Series Inflicts More Damage on the FBI


The second episode of the Fox News “Scandalous” series on the 1992 Ruby Ridge siege revealed the massive military force the FBI deployed against a single-family. As Sunday’s third episode revealed, key unknowns linger into 2020. 

Resisting California’s Two-One Punch Against Liberty


“First Amendment is first for a reason,” notes comedian Dave Chappelle, “Second Amendment is just in case the first one doesn’t work.” California politicians are attacking both amendments, in reverse order. 

Lessons of Jazz Great Jimmy Heath Go Beyond Music


Saxophonist, composer, and arranger Jimmy Heath has passed away at 93, one of the last jazz artists going back to the 1940s. Heath played with many of the greats, including Miles Davis, James Moody, and John Coltrane, according to Heath a man capable of focusing on his musical difficulties. That was also true of...
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Fox News Documentary Puts Brutality of the Militarized Central State on Full Display


Back in 2012, Anthony Gregory wrote “Lessons From Ruby Ridge” on the infamous bloody siege from 1992. Gregory charted the federal efforts to entrap military veteran Randy Weaver, who had opted to live in a remote corner of Idaho. When the entrapment went awry, the FBI brought in massive military force against a single-family,...
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Robert Klein, Davy Crockett, and the Quest for Another $5.5 Billion for Stem Cells


As this column has often noted, the 2004 ballot measure Proposition 71, the $3 billion California Stem Cell Research and Cures Act, promised life-saving cures for Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and other diseases, plus a steady stream of royalties for state coffers. In 2020, a ballpark estimate for the promised cures and therapies is zero, and...
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