Governor Jerry Brown is about to deliver delivered his first California State of the State address since Ronald Reagan was President. Flusher days back then, to be sure. Remember the “obscene surplus“? Now it’s the deficit that’s obscene — $25 billion.

There’s an old slogan: “There are no victims only volunteers.” But the way various California constituencies have reacted to Brown’s double-whammy tax extension/cost-slashing budget proposal, that saying has been reversed: No volunteers, just victims. Nobody wants to take a haircut — not state college students, not redevelopment agencies, not anti-tax advocates, not libraries. The wolf’s at the door, and just because it’s a Democratic wolf doesn’t make it any easier for those who want to hold onto already shrunken state benefits. Live blog below.

For post-speech news coverage, here’s a time-sorted Google News search .
Update 5:52 p.m. Brown’s speech lasted just over 14 minutes.

Update 5:38 p.m.: Full text of the speech.

Republican response by State Sen. Republican Leader Bob Dutton says Brown’s proposal is mostly an “accounting shell game.” Dutton focuses on opposition to tax-hike extensions.

Update 5:24 p.m. Ends with some great-speech boilerplate language, and he’s outta there… Speaker of the Assembly adjourns the session. But members are not excused, someone reminds the legislators. They’ve got a floor session on tap now. Oh wait motion to adjourn…they can go home now. Time to turn to your radio or online to listen to Scott Shafer hosting The California Report’s coverage of the speech.

Update 5:23 p.m. Mentions of Google and Yahoo! as symbols of California’s inventiveness. Maybe he should have left off the latter.

Update 5:22 p.m. Apropos of nothing, I think Jerry looks vaguely like Rod Steiger.

Update 5:20 p.m. For third time he calls for better ideas if anyone has them, implicitly suggesting in my view that there aren’t any.

Update 5:20 p.m.Cut somewhere else! Brown says various groups say.

Update 5:19 p.m. Delving into redevelopment flap. Saying mayors claiming redevelopment funds are different.

Update 5:18 p.m. People have a “right to vote” on this plan, given “unique nature of crisis” and impact implementation will have.

Update 5:18 p.m.Trademark aside: “I want to see some Republicans clapping here.”

Update 5:16 p.m. Invoking Egypt and Tunisia, saying we can’t block vote of people concerning special election he’s called for. A bit of a stretch if you ask me.

Update 5:14 p.m.“Kicking the can down the road” is not an option. He’s casting himself as the only adult in the room — ideological adherents of both state spending and tax-cutting will have to give.

Update 5:13 p.m. KQED’s John Myers is tweeting from the scene.

Update 5:12 p.m. “Need to find the courage and summon to will” to tackle deficit.

Update 5:07 p.m. Gavin Newsom is speaking, opening up with a quote from Oliver Wendell Holmes. We can only hope Newsom doesn’t speak longer than Brown. Introduces Brown. I see the blogger are focusing on the substantial. One tweet: “Who does Newsom’s hair?”

Update 5:09 p.m. Brown corrects introduction by Newsom, says it’s his 8th, not 7th. Now he’s going into prepared remarks. Folks around here say you never know when he’ll deviate from script…

Update 5:03 p.m. – SF is well represented with Gavin Newsom and Kamala Harris being introduced. The old hands around KQED all refer to Brown as “Jerry,” just like they did to “Arnold.” Brown’s got something in the way of charisma, to be sure. He’s a funny cat, though he never seems to smile. He makes a pitch for the hard-sale Brown budget plan, introduces Jerry…

Live Blog: California State of the State Address 31 January,2011Jon Brooks


Jon Brooks

Jon Brooks is the host and editor of KQED’s health and technology blog, Future of You. He is the former editor of KQED’s daily news blog, News Fix. A veteran blogger, he previously worked for Yahoo! in various news writing and editing roles. He was also the editor of, which documented user-generated content about the financial crisis and recession. Jon is also a playwright whose work has been produced in San Francisco, New York, Italy, and around the U.S. He has written about film for his own blog and studied film at Boston University. He has an MFA in Creative Writing from Brooklyn College.

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