Saturday, July 26, 2003

Temporarily blinded by the underpants

Some commentator said that the California recall could presage events in the rest of the country, as Cal. trends so often do (like fish tacos, the Daily Show said). No worries there, this is too silly to replicate. Unlike at the national level, the D’s here are disciplined and unified, with none looking like running against Davis; if they lose, it’ll be that discipline that does it to them. Conversely, the R’s are highly undisciplined here, which could be their downfall: suddenly this week a dozen or more R’s realized that the cost of entry into this election is almost nill--just $3,500, 65 signatures and a pure heart--and developed an interest in becoming. Who knew we’d ever have Michael Huffington to kick around again, much less Gary Condit? Incidentally, the candidates evidently can’t be independents, since those signatures must be from members of their party, which also means those of us registered with no party preference can’t sign. Also, if you don’t vote yes or no on the recall, your vote for a replacement won’t be counted (some of this will no doubt be changed as a result of several legal cases before the election).

Many counties were gearing up to replace punch cards with new voting systems. These won’t be ready by October (and possibly not by March anymore either, since many counties are robbing the funds for next year’s primary to pay for the recall election), which should lead to all sorts of electoral mayhem. Something else no one thought of: there will be something else on the recall ballot, Ward Connelly’s latest screw-the-black-people initiative, something about not counting the race of people served by various state programs, which should have been March, but had to be put on the next state-wide ballot after it qualified, which is this one. All in all, a circus, even if The Arnold doesn’t run.

Remember how Jessica Lynch was supposed to have been shot and stabbed after making a heroic stand, emptying her gun at the Iraqis, etc? Evidently it was all true. The story came from intercepted Iraqi communications, but as usual the US got it wrong. It wasn’t a moderately cute hillbilly girl, but a 33-year old named Sgt. Don Walters, and he was killed. His family is not pleased at missing out on the media deal...sorry, I meant the honor, of course, not the media deal at all.

Jeb Magruder says that Nixon authorized the Watergate break-in, which if true finally answers the question, what did the president know, and when did he know it. Asked why he didn’t mention this before, Magruder says, because nobody asked.

Ariel Sharon will be meeting Bush yet again soon, so he has made the generous offer of withdrawing troops from two more West Bank cities. That they aren’t actually in.

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