Peace through victory - the American way.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Mister Americano Goes To The Polls

Mister Americano headed to the San Diego County Registrar of Voters on Saturday to vote early. Not often, unfortunately. (Don't tell Lou Dobbs but the overweight security guards protecting the polling place spoke Spanish. Yet another mortal threat to our fragile democracy and not a Minute Man in sight. Don't forget, that's pronounced "my newt" as in small and insignificant.)

Statewide offices in California show the consequences of term limits. Two offices, Governor and Secretary of State have Republican incumbents running. The rest are open seats. Most candidates for the other offices are professional politicians term limited out of one position and running for another. Term limits hasn't led to the rise of citizen politicians who serve and then return to private life. Instead we get a political version of musical chairs.

Perhaps the most pathetic candidate this year is Lt. Governor Cruz Bustamante. He failed to beat Arnold in the recall election, he's term limited out of his current office, and so he's running for, drumroll please, Insurance Commissioner. And he stands a good chance of losing to one of the few neophytes in the election, businessman Steve Poizner. We can only hope.

You've to to look to the federal ballots for the other pathetic candidate. Dianne Feinstein's opponent, Richard "Dick" Mountjoy. He is such a nobody that he lists his occupation on the ballot as, get this, "Immigration Control Consultant." These border security types have got their heads in a very dark place. Five years after 9/11 they suddenly have decided Mexico is the enemy. Wrong! It ain't Catholic workers from Mexico that the US has to worry about. It's those other monotheists who thnk God has a harem of 72 virgins waiting for them in heaven if they blow themselves up and kill a few Jews and Christians in the bargain. Mountjoy is the one Republican Mister Americano refused to vote for.

As usual California voters had to decide on a long list of ballot propositions. Mister Americano surprised himself and voted in favor of increasing property taxes in order to fund education. All the bond propositions to upgrade California's infrastructure got a thumbs up too, except for the one to build so-called affordable housing. Housing is not the government's job. You want affordable housing? Let developers build lots more houses, condos, and apartments.

The hot button propositions this year involve, what else, abortion and the issue of the moment, sexual predators. Of course parents should be notified if their minor daughter is seeking an abortion so Proposition 85 got a "yes" vote. Mister Americano works in criminal law. Contrary to popular belief, sexual predators do not get off easy in California. Proposition 83, which among other things will force all paroled sex offenders to live in the countryside to avoid living within 2,000 feet of a school and require them to wear a GPS tag for life, is overkill. That got a big "no" vote from this Republican.

And speaking of overkill, the proposition to tax cigarettes an additional $2.60 per pack got a big "thumbs down." Cigarettes are taxed enough. We've already got enough of a crime problem with the real illegal drugs in California, we don't need to create a black market for tobacco.

Proposition 90, which will curb government's eminent domain power and also give property owners the right to compensation from so-called regulatory takings, got a thumbs up. Proposition 90 is California's answer to the United States Supreme Court's Kelo decision that upheld an overly expansive interpretation of eminent domain. The national movement to curb eminent domain is an example of how the states will handle the abortion issue if the US Supremes ever get around to throwing out Roe v. Wade.

Locally, San Diego's biggest time waster on the ballot is Proposition A, which is solely an advisory vote on whether San Diego should pursue Miramar as the site for a new commercial airport. Right now Miramar belongs to the Marines but the movers and shakers in San Diego's political and business communities want the base. Five years after 9/11 in the midst of a shooting war in Iraq and a terror war with no end in sight, the Marines need the air base just a bit more than San Diego does. So, Proposition A got a very big thumbs down. When the Marines no longer need the airbase, maybe then San Diego can put a commercial airport there.

Proposition B, requiring a vote of the people before city workers can get a big retirement increase again, and Proposition C, allowing for outsourcing city jobs, got hearty "yes" votes. Government workers should get 401K's like the rest of us and businesses should be allowed to compete for non-essential government jobs. It's the American way.

Now get out there and cancel my votes.


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