Driving in to work on Friday, I heard one of the most despicable political radio ads I've ever heard. A woman tells her husband that she signed a petition outside a store and the husband berates her for opening the family up to identity theft. The goal is to scare people away from signing voter-sponsored initiative petitions even though there is absolutely no evidence that giving out your name and address is in any way an invitation to identity theft. The ads have been the buzz around Sacramento and it turns out that unions are sponsoring the ads to try halt initiatives, which tend to advance ideas the unions hate.
Paul Jacob has a good piece on this in Townhall, in which he writes: "It's actually an attempt to frighten people about identity theft so that they will refrain from engaging in the democratic process by signing petitions to place citizen initiative measures on the ballot for voters to decide. A number of petitions now gather up steam for a batch of newly proposed ballot initiatives, some strongly opposed by organized labor." The unions' allies in the Legislature haven't succeeded in gutting the initiative, despite their efforts. So now it has come down to this kind of dishonest scare campaign.