My Wesbter's Dictionary defines an appropriation as "money officially authorized to be paid from a public treasury."
If only it were that simple. Expect a heated debate in the near future as to whether Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's decision last week to line-item veto almost $500 million in spending was within his powers as chief executive... or not.
The second and final day of then-versus-now comparisons by the venerable Field Poll makes it easy to see how the seeds of discontent and disagreement have flowered among partisan voters in California these last three decades.
In short: Democrats are more liberal, Republicans are more conservative, and hot button issues have little chance of striking consensus. And some of the only unanimity is found in pessimism.